Thursday, December 25, 2014

A Merry Christmas

What a wonderful day. I hope everyone had as merry a Christmas as I had with these three precious babies.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Unwanted Gifts

Everyone has received an unwanted gift at some point in their life. That junky knick-knack gadget, a fruit cake, or a sweater that wasn't quite right. What do you do? Thats easy, you smile and thank the giver.

But what do you do when your loyal beloved housekeeper of umpteen years gives your daughter not one, but two, parakeets?

I smiled and thanked the giver.

Although I wasn't thrilled at first, it didn't take long for me to warm up to the birds. They're young, slightly smaller than adult parakeets, and both male. One is a delicate pale yellow with gray-blue feathers across the top of his chest and tucked beneath the wings on his back. Middle named him Pip. The second is a mix of snowy white and turquoise feathers. His name is now Buddy.

Pip and Buddy. My housekeeper probably paid around $15 for the both of them. Throw in the $15 cage and she was out around $30. But of course Middle's research on parakeets quickly revealed the inadequate size of the cage that was gifted. Over $120 later (my expense), Pip and Buddy are now enjoying a quite spacious abode. Throw in another $40 for food, chew toys and treats, and now I'm out a whopping $160.

But guess what? We love the birds.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Nathaniel Hawthorne Quote

"Easy reading is damn hard writing". 
          - Nathaniel Hawthorne

Friday, December 19, 2014

Remembering a Rainy Day

It's a rainy day in Houston, and for some reason the memories of another rainy day popped to mind. It's funny how the mind works. You can be going about your business and something completely random pops into your head. 

It was August 2013. Superman and I had taken the kids to Costa Rica and we were rafting near the Arenal Volcano when it started to rain. What a rush to white water raft the rainforest in the rain.

Here's what it looked like.

And here's how much we loved it. This is Youngest. Middle is in the background.

NaNoWriMo What?

I spend too much time surfing the internet on how to write, what to write, when to write - you get the idea. But I came across an interesting website devoted to helping novelists (and aspiring novelists) write a book in 30 days. It's, short for National Novel Writing Month.

The national writing month is November, but I'm sure the techniques can be used to complete a novel in any calendar month. The goal is to write a 50,000 word rough draft in 30 days. It's a very intriguing concept that I might look into when I'm ready to start my own novel. I'm not quite there yet. Still reading, researching, etc.

Maybe January will be my nanowrimo. I'll push my prep work these last couple weeks of December and see how much I can get done. Wouldn't that make for a fun New Years goal?

Monday, December 15, 2014

Stephen King Quote

If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.  -Stephen King

Monday, December 8, 2014

A Case For The Common

Critics and scholars disdain popular success. Look no further than Danielle Steel who has entertained thousands successfully for decades. They can't stand her, yet she laughs all the way to the bank. 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Why I Am

"We are what we repeatedly do." -Aristotle 

That's one to ponder on so many levels. 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Call Me Scrooge

Call me a Scrooge, but I'm not a big fan of the 'zone,' the period from Thanksgiving to New Years. I love the holidays, its just that I wish they were farther apart. They're so close together, and there's so much to do, that it's hard to think of one without the others looming in the background.

Take Christmas decorations... some years I do (most years I do), but some years I don't. Same with Christmas cards. Then there's gift wrapping - bahumbug. But I've found a way around that. Years ago I started hiding my kids's gifts and then writing clues as to their locations, turning the whole ordeal into a fun scavenger hunt. Now, what secretly started out as a way to get out of wrapping presents, has turned into a cherished family tradition.

Ever the economist, I try to find ways to cut corners. Online shopping is a big one. I avoid malls at the holidays like the plague. Gift cards is another. Everybody loves gift cards, don't they?

I told you, call me a Scrooge.

UPDATE: (Note to self) Don't post about the holidays when I've had a long day and am very tired. I've heard a few Christmas songs on the radio and am now in a more festive mood. But still no work toward decorations or cards. TBD...