Today I worked on the hallway painting project. I must say, it is almost done. I will post pictures this weekend.
Thursday is the little brother to Friday. He isn't as important to a lot of people, but he is a good guy. Thursdays of the week are the days that people look at and realize they still have time to get that 'certain' project done. There is hope to get some things completed.
Today I worked on the hallway painting project. I must say, it is almost done. I will post pictures this weekend.
Today is "Writing Wednesday". It is also the day the hubs and I celebrate our 42nd wedding anniversary. I don't think a lot of writing is going to be done today.
When the first book, Nan's Journey, was published, pain had begun to take over my life. I found out that it was from Fibromyalgia. In order to occupy my mind while I was not able to do too much physical things, I wrote. I wrote and wrote and wrote. Sixteen books were the result of an attempt to escape pain and to try to be productive with my life. The Lord gave me the words and stories.
I have discovered the joy of living through pain and trusting the Lord completely. This year I have also been given a gift of a chance to escape much of the pain with a simple life change. Our sweet Cari and Mikey gave me "the blue box" for Christmas. Now, I feel so good, I can hardly sit still long enough to write.
I will get back to writing. It is just so joyful to be able to do things I haven't been able to do for eleven years. Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want more information about 'the blue box'. I feel it is an answer to my prayers.
For once the note for things to do today didn't have "Finish lap quilt to sell for Maci's trip to Africa." It is done!!!
This picture shows it 'almost done', but now it is done!
Also on my list is to strip the paint from the woodwork in my small hallway. I tried stripper and also a heat gun. I like the heat gun best. I may have to follow up the heat gun with chemical stripper to get any residue left over. We have a craftsman style home and there are so many coats of paint on the original trim in that hallway. I believe it is mahogany like the original bookcases in our living room. It is a tedious job, but I am going to get it done.
IThe hubs and I have always sang together. We sing while we drive down the road. (radio optional and usually not on) We sing while doing odd jobs around the house and outside. We just love to sing.
Lately, our song that has been stuck in our heads is "Let the Lower Lights Be Burning." (Send the gleem across the waves...Some poor fainting, struggeling seaman, you may rescue, you may save.)
I've been doing craft DIY stuff also. One of them was a hanger thingy for putting clothes on just out of the dryer. It has the words "You gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em...."
Sorry, I got distracted while looking for the picture I was going to put here. This is Granddaughter #3. I will get back and post the picture of the hanger.
Last week I chose to use Thursday for focusing on stuff I don't like to do. Last week, it was getting my hair cut and styled. While I enjoy the process, I put it off sometimes. Last week I also mentioned starting to take care of my hands and feet.
I did do a quick manicure and pedicure, but they were a bit trashed after I painted for a few days. It is strange to think of doing the little girly things like that. I've also made a good attempt at putting on makeup each day. I think the hubs likes it.
I like feeling good about my efforts. I'm feeling better so getting into the habit of doing better is a challenge. The biggest hurdle is getting over feeling of being selfish. I now realize that it is okay to take care of myself.
Hello! Today is 'Writing Wednesday'. I should be writing on the latest WIP (work in progress), but it occurs to me that I need a better plan. I need to make a REAL schedule for Wednesday. By that I mean that I need to portion out the day.
I know I won't be writing the entire day. I will be eating, cleaning, cooking, and Facebooking some, if not most, of the day. I have to get a handle on this. Discipline! Today is writing day.
I am going to schedule a two hour portion of time to write. Then, I will to 15 minutes of housework. I WILL keep track of the day. I think that will work. If you are a writer or are easily distracted from your purpose like I am, share with me how you discipline yourself with time.
Today I am giving a humorous speech to the Happy Timers group at the First Christian Church. I am really excited to meet with these friends. As far as "Tackling Tues", part of the process today will be this speech.
I have my income tax stuff together so I will be making my appointment to get them done with Paul Bond. I suppose after scheduling the appointment, I will finish up the few things that need to be done to complete the "laundry room project". I promise to post pictures. Do you have a few loose ends you need to finish? Let me encourage you to tackle it today.
Music has always been one of the most important elements of my life. From my earliest memories, songs bellowed from my lips with gusto. Mama and I did our work around the house and sang endlessly. Most of the hymns I know were learned while dusting, ironing, making beds and hanging clothes on the line.
When I was in second grade Mama decided I was old enough to take piano lessons. I was scared and excited at the same time. She taught me the little rhymes that helped me memorize the names of the lines and spaces.
The songs I played were super simple. They had no words. Two months into the lessons Mama decided I had learned enough from my teacher and could teach myself the rest. (No problem, right?)
Teaching myself was a big challenge. Mama gave me a church hymnal and said I could learn how to play church songs so I could play the piano at church. (Now I was really scared.) I looked at the tiny little shaped notes and said, "Every, good, boy, does, fine, F, A, C, E"
As I figured out which notes were which on the right hand, I took a pencil and wrote the note names down in the songbook. We had learned the Bass notes as well...All, cars, eat, gas. Great, big, dogs, fight, animals. Those were also noted.
In two months of formal piano lessons I had learned one sharp and four flats. I stayed stuck there for many years. In high school choir I finally learned the notes between the clefts in the invisable lines and spaces. I was confused before I learned that.
The first church song I learned was "When We All Get to Heaven". As I crippled through it, Mama sang. When I made a mistake she didn't let me start over. I had to keep going. The reason was that if I was to play the piano for church, no one would stop for my mistakes. I would have to learn to move on. That way of thinking was a blessing as well as a cursing. I did play for church, but when I practiced at home, I never went over and over problem areas in order to figure out how to do it right.
I wonder how Mama knew I could figure it out. Now, I'm in the process of learning how to play the guitar. Join me next Monday for an update on that journey.
I took this picture with my hair wet so that the shadows on my face would show better to give a better evaluation of what this makeup does.
You know how it is, you start watching an informercial or QVC and see something that interests you. Makeup hasn't been very important to me in the past, but as I age, some elements of the sale/cheap stuff I have purchased forever sort of bother me.
I've been up town and seen my reflection only to look like I put the stuff on in the dark. I swear, there were ridges where my fingerprints smoothed the stuff on my chin. grrrr.
IT cosmetics had my attention. I ordered it and I tried it this morning.
These are the items that came in the mail yesterday. The coverage is amazing. The little tube is a concealer. It literally takes one drop to cover under the eyes. It smooths out with the small part of the brush. The lipstick looks like it is the color of chapstick, NOPE, it changes when it hits your lips. The color is perfect for me. The foundation only takes a tiny bit. I really like the mascara, and the multicolored compact as well. The mineral powder ties it all together with a nice finish. NO MORE FINGERPRINTS.
The formua for this product is supposed to make your skin better. It feels better already, and I'll let you know how it goes as I use it.
The radio was blaring in my pickup truck today and I heard an advertisement about poor men and their 'honey do' list. I guess it got under my skin because if there is a list, it is a 'we're gonna do this' list. Sure, the hubs takes on the loin's share, but there are a lot of things I do that he has no clue of how to even start.
Today, I saw some cute things on in my email that had to do with those little ironing boards that are used to iron little sleeves and such. I think the woman who posted was on hometalk. I then did a serch on Pinterest on laundry rooms and my mind went crazy. Soooo ...here is what happened after I turned off my computer.
Since we are talking about laundry rooms, I'll show you a device that is very handy for drying clothes so that they aren't as wrinkled. It holds about 7 to 10 shirts at a time. I moved it to one of the guest rooms so that I would have a good place to hang the ironing board.
You will notice all the totes in the closet. Those hold all the books and things I use to set up book booths at events I go to. You will notice that the dryer hangers come apart and store very nicely.
This is the next project.
This was very handy when I was sewing little rabbits and cows all dressed in victorial garb. Since I don't do crafts like that anymore, it is time for it to be 'repurposed'.
I took them apart to get them ready to paint. I also printed off the word 'laundry'. I couldn't figure out how to do a mirror image of the word, so I had it do a dark, full sized, shadow.
I posted this today in case you didn't look at it on Friday. lol
Friday is here again. What plans have you made for your day? For some reason, I've been focused on my laundry room. Of course, I love getting ideas from Pinterest and putting my own spin on them. (Let's be honest, when I try to duplicate, things don't turn out right.)
I had seen a cute little table made from a little sleeve board like this on Pinterest, but I didn't need a table or a shelf. I looked around and decided what I really did need. I knew I needed a hanger for my ironing board, but the only place I had for it was occupied by a handy clothes dryer/hanger. Now, to find a place for that.
I put it in the guest room closet. It really does dry your nicer clothes with hardly any wrinkles. It was used a whole lot when our sons were at home.
Now, back to the project at hand. I took apart the sleeve board, removed the fabric from it and took off the hardware.
This is the completed laundry sign. I hope you enjoyed this little idea.
We can all agree that there is something fantastic about Friday. It is the end of the work week for a lot of people and planning day for the weekend. Since I work from home I slide right into Saturday. Often no plans are made.
Sometimes I do have book events on Saturdays, Sundays, or both. Those are woking days for me. While I enjoy visiting readers face-to-face, the work behind the scenes is wearisome. Through the years I've edited some of those events down. Since I'm feeling better these days, I may pick up some of those events because I miss going those places and seeing the nice people.
What kinds of things do you plan for Saturdays? The hubs has to work on Saturdays and is off on Sundays and Mondays. Sunday and Monday is our "weekend". Many times we choose those days to kick around our acreage, work on the place, go to church, and make home improvements.
After writing this post I realize it is high time to go shopping...somewhere....Amarillo??? Where is your favorite place to shop. Comment and I'll send you a free Running to Her Future Tee shirt. Include your size in the comment. (Offer for Feb 10 & 11, 2017 only)
This Thursday I have an appointment with my hairdresser. I'm looking for a 'new' look for me, but I don't know if I am brave enough to go through with it. It is a good thing my hairdresser is my nephew because he powers through my angst and does what I NEED done and helps me through the process.
Today is Writing Wednesday! If you are an author/writer/blogger, it is a good day to write. If you don't write everyday, you need at least one day you commit to this work. If you aren't a writer, you are not off the hook. You probably have birthday, anniversary, or sympathy cards you need to get out. How about some of your friends who don't have internet? They would probably love a note from you. Yes, in your personal handwriting. It doesn't have to be long and wordy. Just let those dear ones know you are thinking about them.
Do you have warranties and other pesky paperwork that you have failed to fill out? How about getting your tax information together for the tax prep guy? Meeee tooooo! Commit to do one or two things like this done today. You will feel such a feeling of accomplishment.
Think of me while I write on the next book, "Christian Single". It is about a nice girl who is tired of not having a boyfriend. She lives in a small town and all of her friends are already married. Her mother and dad are worried about her. Get the picture? I'm hoping to make this both funny and inspiring. Pray for me.
See you on Thursday - Hurdling Over Thursday!
Tackle Tuesday! I've decided to title the days of the week and how to approach them. If you are like me, Tuesday is a challenge. It is usually the second day of the diet you started on Monday, the second step into a busy week, and a sink full of stray leftover casserole dishes.
No? Hang on and see how it is on the 'other' side. Usually the umph I had on Sunday to do better has fizzled a bit so I have to inspire myself to get Tuesday rolling in the right direction. So here we go:
Pray: Yep. I have to remind myself to pray.
Put music on and sing. Yes, SING. It feels different when you sing along.
Conquer that sink and those kitchen counters. (I had a mess and it took way less than 10 minutes.)
Look around your house and jot down a list of unfinished projects. We will be working on them on Tuesdays.
Right now I have a quilt to finish. I have been procrastinating for weeks. I know it will take about an hour. (maybe 2 at the most)
I have a book I really want to read. I will take that in bite sized pieces of an hour each.
I have two books I am in the midst of writing. One is closer to the finish line than the other, so I will tackle it first.
I have a perscription that needs picked up. That goes to the top of the list along with some mail that needs sent out.
That is enough for my list today. What's on your list?
(If you want to bid on the lap-sized quilt, leave me a message here.)
Sixteen books...16 books...how on earth did I write sixteen books from 2006-2015? How did I stay focused on the task? I don't know. I do know that in November of 2015 I was abruptly derailed when my sister passed from this life.
There is a part of a writer that has to let go and let the mind wander to "what if" places. When I attempted to find those places, my mind just sunk into grief. I indulged myself in a lot of grief for many months.
During that time I distracted my mind with a lot of projects. Some of them are documented here on this blog. There came a time I had to come face-to-face with the calling of writing. Was I still a writer? Were there more books in my future? Should I stop writing? Is God through with using me in this way?
I found that I really like to do projects around the house. I also like to quilt. (I've never taken lessons, but I like to do it.) I like to garden and do outside work. Do I do that instead of writing? I was praying about this one day and I had a strong impression that I had to move away from soaking myself in grief. I felt that I had built a monument to my sister and walked away from my calling. I don't want to do that anymore. I still miss her, but there are more books to write.
If you want to join me in this journey, please sign up for this blog.
One thing I really enjoy doing while I'm working on a new book is making pretty things for my home. I've had a project in my head for several months.
I like looking at sale pages on Facebook and going to resale shops. Today, I found the perfect chandelier for 'the blue room'. It is a guest room now. It used to be our eldest son's room. He and his brothers think I've 'girlied' things up a little too much. I guess I have.
This is the latest victim...purchase. I found it on Facebook on a sales page from a nice person in my own town. I put it on my picnic table and started to work.
First, I took all the crystals off.
I took the light bulbs out and the hubs put pieces of paper towels in the sockets to keep the paint out. I spray painted the metal and 'candles' white. Then, I sprayed the whole thing with silver paint.
I didn't want it super shiney, so I got out the can of grey/black glaze and used an old toothbrush to appy it.
I rubbed some of the glaze off. This looks pretty rough right now. Some of the arms fold up. One of them broke and the hubs used JB weld on it. It is on hold until after work tomorrow.
Tick tock...for now, this is a picture of the 'blue room' before the chandelier.
This is pretty blurry, but you can see there is just a plain light on the ceiling.
I lightened up the grey and now for replacing the crystals and hanging.
It is hard to tell, but it is light/med grey. I think it turned pert-near perfect. (old-time phrase) We need 2 more LED bulbs, but I used what I had to fill in the empty spots. Some might like the gold look better. (It was pretty) This color goes with the silver accents in this room. I'd like to get rid of the texture on the ceiling one day, but that is further down the list.
Now it is time to dig in and write on the next book, "Stolen Hope".
It has been a few years since I've decorated for Fall. I once was a pre-school teacher, so I had some cute decorations. However, I wanted to do something outside that could withstand the prevalent winds we get around here.
We were between paychecks, so I needed to put my thinking cap on and make something from items I already had on hand. After retrieving the current decorations from the basement, I saw that I had a few things that could be proved useful. Then, I went outside to decide what I wanted to decorate.
I spotted some hanging baskets that had been given to me this summer. They were never put to use as either a hanging basket or a sphere with lights in them. Some of them were in rough shape and some were intact. I chose 2 white ones that looked good enough for this project.
They had liner stuff in them that had some dirt and leaves in them, so I did the work outside on my picnic table. (refinishing the table will occure asap) I took the liner stuff out of each basket.
The fabric was in the stash of decorations I had stored away. I've even forgotten what I ever used it for. I measured and there was enough for both of the baskets. I brought out my scissors and zip ties.
I liked the linings that were in the baskets because they gave more dimention to them. I pushed them against the fabric so that they protruded passed the wire.
Matching the wire on the baskets, I put them together with 3 zip ties. The picture was taken before I tightened the tie and clipped the end. I am planning on using the hanging baskets in my garden next summer, so it isn't something that has to last forever.
I also attached the 'welcome friends' door hanger to the 'pumpkin' and placed an old cultivator next to it.
I don't know, maybe the leaves look tacky, but I have young grandkiddos who will be thrilled when they see the decorations. The leaves and scarecrow were in the preschool box. The hubs and I got the cultivator from an antique mall in Ohio. The vendor had it marked for $35. Other vendors had theirs for $135. I love the look and have plans for it in the garden this coming summer as well.
The scarecrow was one of the decorations I used at my house in bygone years. The antique sled was purchased in PA at a garage sale that was held at a horse farm. Oh boy, was that a good garage sale. I actually wanted the farm. (The reason was it was pretty, but it was also a stone's throw away from our newest grand.)
This is also on the deck. We had flowers in the attached flower baskets, but the dirt wasn't deep enough to keep them watered. The poor things died while we were in PA. You may have noticed the spikey sticks...they are skewers we placed around the flowers to keep the barn cats off of them. Everything in this basket was from the pre-school box. The kiddos will love it. We live in the country, so we decorate the deck we use for an entry on the side of our house. You can see the location of the garden we worked tiredly on. (I was going to say tirelessly, but face it, we got really tired. hee hee)
If you want to post your Fall decorations in the comments, I'd love to see them.
In order to place books into the hands of readers who haven't read many of my books, I'm giving away 5 copies of "Six Miles from Nashville". It is an Amazon #give away and will be digital copies.
I really enjoyed writing this book. It is about a girl who has just graduated from high school. She is from the panhandle of Oklahoma. The setting is 1974-1976. Since it is pre-internet saturation, she has little idea of how the world outside her farming community works.
She falls victim to her naivety and finds herself six miles from Nashville in the hands of strangers.
This is a picture of our youngest granddaughter. It is funny because she is only 1 1/2 months old and she was giving a "thumbs up". Of course Meme just had to share with everyone what was on her mind.
Elaine & her Husband, Terry, raised their three sons in "Almostaranch" Texas where they now enjoy spoiling their grandchildren. Many enjoy listening to her humorous take on life. Even the simplest activity takes on a life of its own when Elaine is involved in the telling of it.