Monday, March 26, 2007

Back Home

A trek across the western hinterlands with a ratio of one adult to one baby and one dog is something I would only try once.

That said, I want to move to Colorado or Utah. (But mostly Colorado.) It is beautiful, and the wide open areas are covered in grasses and fir trees, not cacti and joshua trees like Southern Cal. In fact, the expanse is what drives me to want to move. I'm tired of living in a town house, not having a yard, and living in a neighborhood that is a street with two dead-ends, surrounded by a golf course we won't ever want to belong to. (Unless they put up a mini-golf area...)

My parents live in a town house too, but they've got a yard that backs up on Cherry Creek State Park. Every morning, I took Silver out on a walk there, leash-free. She loved it. It's something she'd never be allowed to do here, and the mountain range in the background was splendid. She liked to lay out on the yard, surveying the mountains as if she owned them. Here's a pic of Silver at Vale Pass.

Along the way, I took some pictures. I first got the idea when passing a live-stock trailer that had somehow opened up on the highway and let out sheep. They stopped, and fortunately I didn't see any hurt sheep, but it looked like the whole town had gathered to corrall the sheep on the side of the road. I tried to inconspicuously take a pic while driving past. That picture didn't come out too great, so here's one of the best street in the US... and it's in the middle of nowhere, California.

I also got some writing done in Colorado, thanks to my mom. I re-wrote two chapters and outlined some more.

So, now we've got to get back into a routine. Elizabeth is trying to walk now. TRYING. All she does now is pull herself up on something, let go, and fall. She hits her head a lot, and I feel bad, but I think it's a right of passage. (I sound awful!) She doesn't hurt herself badly, though. She mostly cries because she's so frustrated.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

A Baby, a Dog, and 1,000 Miles

Wish me luck and enhanced patience ~ I'm driving to Denver today, sans husband. He is doing his 2-weeks with the Navy, out on a boat, so I'm going to visit my parents. My daughter hates her car seat and Silver is terrified of cars, so it will be so pleasant.

Jim called last night from the boat before they left and said he was out on a sort of balcony, where his cell would work. He asked around about a place to use it and they pointed to a hatch (door) that was 2 1/2 feet tall. He asked, "is this a new-guy trick?" But no, he really had to walk through a tiny door to get to a balcony.


Monday, March 12, 2007

Re-writing through Muck

I took a look back at Chapter Three and realized things had to go a different way... so before I could go on with Chapter Eleven, I had to fix it. So here it is, 2:30am. Chapter Three is fixed for now, but I can't leave Chapter Four as it is. I guess I can't just keep plodding on like some writers do and THEN go back and revise. It's bothering me too much that I have a huge gap there. Thank goodness I like the actual writing part of novel creation. It doesn't matter much right now where I'm writing in my book, as long as I'm writing in my book.

Ok, I really need to join my family in bed. No more green tea lattes at 9pm.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

A Movie to Cry With

Jim and I got some unusual free time together last night, and we spent our two hours at the movies, watching Bridge to Terabithia. I read the book when I was...twelve? I can't remember, exactly, and I couldn't remember the whole story except that I was mad when I finished it and cried and cried. (I was mad because I hated it when bad things happened to characters that had become as real to me as my family - like when Matthew died in Anne of Green Gables.)

Jim couldn't remember if he had ever read the book. I continuously find these things odd because his mother was his elementary school librarian (she still is). I would have lived on a cloud if my mother were the librarian, but no, he was more interested in computers than books.

Anyway... the movie. I told him it would be sad, but good. And it was. However, although I cried once again and was wrapped up in the characters on the screen, I could see WHY everything happened. It had to be that way to be real. It had to be that way so Jess would never forget (and could never ignore) the differences in his life. Of course, I still wanted it to end differently, but I could accept it the way it was. So I wasn't mad, thank goodness. I don't care how much it might have differed from the book because the tone, the story, the characters, and the dream were all there. Boy did it affect me!

When we got home, I went upstairs to see my daughter. She was on the aerobed, where my dad had finally gotten her to sleep (she's impossible in that way). She looked as soft as the quilt. I picked her up and nursed her while she was half-asleep, and as we rocked in the chair, I cried a little for the parents in the movie. Her hair was sticking up, and I wiped it down with my tear-moistened fingers. Eventually, she filled her tummy and fell back asleep with her mouth open and I laid her in our bed.

I'll read the book again, when she is old enough to sit and listen.

Friday, March 9, 2007


Despite a busy day of going to the beach, getting a passport application in the mail, and a visit to the dentist (all with my daughter, which was a bit insane), I ALSO got 500 words written. No, it's not a lot, but what a feat! Forgive me for my obvious pride at the moment, but really, I didn't think it would happen when I woke up this morning.

So I've got 2500 more to do this weekend. It'll happen, I swear.

Since Dad's in town, we're going out for Mexican tonight. Woohoo!

(Maybe I'm on some kind of flouride high and don't know it.)

Thursday, March 8, 2007

slow week

I've been fighting off a cold this week and trying to keep Elizabeth free of it, so I haven't done anything for my book except a few character sketches. ([the old lady] is now called Paana, btw.) BUT my dad is here this weekend. He told me he'd only be here last night, but when he showed up, he said he'd be here all weekend. It's great news to me, because that means I've got a free babysitter. I'll do some writing, go out on a date with my hubby (it's been eons since we've done that), and do some more writing.

Saturday is my writer's group meeting. We meet twice a month but only submit once a month. I sent them chapter three (this critiquing is slow-going) and they'll be giving me feedback on it in just two days. Having a critique group is beneficial, especially one like this that's no-holds-barred. If it sucks or doesn't make sense, they let me know, but they're not mean about it. The coolest thing is that everyone's story is completely different. It's amazing how creative just one small group of people can be - imagine what the whole world could be!

Oh, it's nursing time, apparently. Ciao!

Saturday, March 3, 2007

New Pic and a Plan

We went out to the grass on our street (doesn't that sound weird) and took pictures this afternoon. We got there later than I wanted (the sun was setting), but at least some of the pictures came out good. My mom wanted a picture of her in that dress.

This morning, after Jim got back from yoga (something we can't do together anymore), I went to a coffee shop and sat down to write. I ordered a latte, which was unusual for me since I'm a tea drinker, but I was feeling run-down. Whoo. Can't do that often. I talked to an older man for the better part of an hour before I finally settled in my chair and wrote. I did around a thousand words, which was nice. Then, when the writing got harder and I was grasping at what comes next, I looked at my calendar and made a rough plan.

1. Write 3,000 words a week. This shouldn't be too hard, and I'm aiming low. If I can do a thousand words in an hour or two, I should get enough time per week to make this goal.
2. Adding that up to 12,000 words a month, I should be done with the first draft by June. I will have a party, too, when that happens. How many people finish a novel, even just a first draft?
3. Work on Draft #2 and finish that by end of August. Yes, you writer friends are shaking your heads at my naivete, I know, but gosh darnit, I am motivated!

We're going to the bookstore in a bit so he can study for the GRE. I'm not expecting to get much writing time in tonight, but if she stays asleep at the store (1/50 chances on that happening), then I'll work on my characters. I'm tired of writing [the old lady] for one of the characters I hadn't intended on developing and using so much. She just won't leave - a downright boggery ole' polynesian lady.

(At this exact moment, Jim is upstairs changing Elizabeth's diaper and putting her in jammies. She is screaming. I feel a twinge of guilt, but then...they need alone time, right?)

Friday, March 2, 2007

This Week

This week has been difficult for writing, but I'm going to make up for it today and this weekend. I've got a babysitter and my husband will be home tomorrow to watch Elizabeth. Right now, she's still asleep, but should wake up any second. I sat down to eat breakfast and I thought for sure she would wake up then - she's usually got great timing - but I guess she's still tired from her non-napping day yesterday.

I did managae to finish off Chapter Nine the other day, though. :-)

Jim said I need to update my photo. It's two years old, from when I was in Quatar for R&R (that's why I'm so happy). We'll work on the image this weekend, I guess, among the other hundred chores we've got to accomplish.