Friday, January 30, 2015

Starting Over ...

Well, so far my attempt to keep up better with my blog has failed miserably. I guess that's okay. I'm not going to be too hard on myself for that just yet. I am also in the process of transferring from one computer to another, so that's a lot to bear with (pun intended) to begin with.

One thing I really want to do is begin prepping my middle grade story, Encroached. I believe I am going to self-publish this one. At least that's what I'm thinking right now. For the most part, it is pretty much complete. I have a few simple edits to do, and I'd also like to redo the cover. The current cover has a grizzly bear on it, which I like, but the rest of the cover doesn't give it a middle grade feel. So anyway, that's what I need to work on.

I went to the doctor today for my annual physical. I have one of those doctors that likes to sit down and talk. I swear, I certainly can't say she doesn't give me enough time in the exam room. That's never been an issue. I think she'd sit there and talk for hours if she could. Anyway, during our conversation she asked if I was still making time for my writing. I said yes—I'm always thinking of new story ideas—but the fact is that I really haven't sat down and wrote anything in a long time. I need to change that.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Go Hawks!

If you told me a few months ago that I'd be painting my fingernails to match the color of the Seattle Seahawks, I probably would have laughed at you. I've never been a huge football person, nor have I ever had a specific team I've cheered on. Rick likes football, so he watches it often, and occasionally I'll join him. Mostly though, the extent of my football-fandom revolves around Super Bowl Sunday. I'll watch that, although I never really paid attention to who was playing. Well, maybe ... unless the Red Hot Chili Peppers were performing at half-time. Ha!

For me to have Seahawks t-shirts and earrings ... well, that's just plain weird. I've really become obsessed with the team for some reason. Montana has two college football teams—the Grizzlies and the Bobcats—but the closest NFL team is Seattle. The Seahawks are huge here in this little section of northwest Montana. You can't go anywhere without seeing someone sporting some sort of hat, shirt, etc. I may not know much about football and I'm definitely a newcomer, but that's okay. I guess you're never too old to get interested in something new!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Fishy! Why are you sleeping?!?!

Well, it looks like we're back in the world of aquariums. This is our tank above. When we moved from California to Montana in 2008, it was full of fish, and we didn't want to have to get rid of them. There were too many, and no way they could make the drive with us. So, my in-laws were kind enough to take the tank for us. They enjoyed it and their cats loved it. Even when we went to visit them just this past December, there were two of our remaining fish still alive. We moved EIGHT years ago, and the fish were old then! I couldn't believe they lived that long. However, one passed while we were there, and the other wasn't doing well at all. The fish my in-laws had added was an algae eater, which wasn't doing well either.

So anyway, the tank had become way too much work for my in-laws to keep up with. They're getting up in age, and my FIL is dealing with cancer and treatments, so it was just way too much work. Since we had our van this time, we decided to take the aquarium home with us. The two remaining fish were so bad off, so it wasn't as dramatic had it been emptying a full tank of fish. Rick got it all cleaned out and we brought it home. We got it set up right after Christmas.

We bought 16 new fish for the tank. Up until last night, they were all doing great. Sadly, we lost one of the Dalmatian Platys just yesterday. We'll probably replace that one, since there's only one now, and I just can't stand that he or she is in there without a partner. I'll probably pick another one up tomorrow. Other than that, the rest of the fish are doing great. I tried to take some photographs last night. That was a lesson in patience and frustration. I realized that maybe aquatic photography is not for me. Ha! They'll float motionless until just about the time I get the camera focused ... then they swim away like little spaz monsters!

Even so, I'm so grateful to my in-laws for taking such good care of the aquarium. I never expected to get it back, but it really is nice having fish again. Denny loves them as well.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

What'cha reading?

I'm currently re-reading The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank. It's been years since I read it, so I wanted to read it again. For Christmas, Rick gave me the DVD set of War & Remembrance. That's one of my all-time favorite mini-series, although it's a hard one to watch. Rick also gave me the book below, which I want to start reading next. It's about an Auschwitz survivor as well.

I read Fortunately The Milk to the boys not too long ago. That was a fun, quick read. We all really enjoyed it as well. I also read Coraline sometime around Halloween. I love Neil Gaiman's work. I still haven't read The Graveyard Book, but I hope to someday.

My friend Walter sent me a copy of Jacob Have I Loved by Katherine Paterson. I read that while we were driving down to California. The boys and I are the only ones in our family that can read in the car. Rick and the girls all get carsick, for some reason. I really enjoyed this book though, and could totally relate to the main character.

I'm still reading The One Year Bible too, which was one of my New Year's Resolutions. Today is the seventh day, and so far I'm keeping up with it. And you? Read anything good lately?

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Road trip ...

Saturday morning we left early to drive Nicole back to school. She goes to Rocky Mountain College in Billings, which is eight hours away. She has a car at school, but it's older and not super dependable, so we drive her back and forth for now. It was so nice to have her home for the holidays. The time went by way too quickly, as always. Anyway, we were expecting a big storm all the way across the state from Saturday through Monday. Our plans were to drive her back on Sunday, since she started classes on Monday, but with the storm we left a day early. It's a good thing we did. Driving home was treacherous on Sunday. By Monday, some of the interstate we had driven on the day before was closed down. So, I guess we timed it well, despite having to get her there a day early.

As usual, any road trip is a chance for me to take photographs. It's fun for me to take them as we're driving because I never know what I will catch. Sometimes I use my phone, and other times my camera. The picture below here is an old, abandoned house on a farm. We drive by it all the time. You can't see it, but just to the left a few years is a toppled over car. It's a really, really old car too. We call it the "Cow Car" because the first time we saw it there were a bunch of cows hanging out by it. We joked that they were car tipping. But anyway, the old house is fairly close. I took this with my phone, then zoomed in and added a filter to make it look older. Once I posted it on Instagram, I couldn't get over how much it looked like a sketch. Weird.

Below is another picture of Our Lady of the Rockies. It's a 90 foot tall statue in Butte, Montana. It's on private property, so the only way to see it up close is by private tour. I don't know how much that costs. The only time I'm ever in Butte is when I'm driving through, so the only way I've seen her is from I-90. I zoomed in really far, and this was taken while Rick was driving pretty fast. One of these days I'm going to have to stop and get a proper photograph of her ... if not go on the tour itself.

I hope everyone is having a great New Year so far. I'm doing well with keeping up with my Bible program. If I keep it by my bed, I shouldn't have any problem. It's only a few pages per day. Now that I'm home from our trip, I hope to keep up with blogging as well.

Friday, January 2, 2015

I resolve to ...

I resolve to ... to what? Normally, I make New Year's resolutions, and I'm pretty good at keeping them most of the time. I know a lot of people aren't into them at all. That's okay. I have to laugh though, because the other day I was digging in my closet and I came across the bag with my leopard latch-hook rug kit in it. I think I resolved TWICE to finish that. It's pretty sad that the only time I even got it out was to take a picture of it for a New Year's resolution. Pathetic. What's even more funny is that I pulled the damn thing out of the closet yesterday, so now it's sitting in the hallway—taunting me—again!

So anyway ... here I sit trying to come up with some sort of New Year's resolution that I think I can keep. For starters, I've really slacked off with my weight-loss/exercise routine this past year. That is something I know I need to work on, regardless of resolutions. However, I would like to get out a Bible I have that allows you to read the entire thing in a year. That's doable for me. The other thing I really want to do is get back into blogging. I don't just mean keeping up with my own blogs, but visiting others as well. So, blogging and Bible are two things I'm going to work on. I have two days to catch up on, but I can do that. Anyway, I just went downstairs and got my Bible and ... I'm blogging, so ... so far, so good!

At the top is another shot taken from Lake McDonald in Glacier NP yesterday. The clouds decided to clear away just as we were getting ready to leave. Go figure.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy 2015!

Rick and I drove up to Glacier for a little while today. We did this last year too, so maybe it will become a new New Year's Day tradition for us. I reposted the photo I took in 2014 for my last post, and here's the new one for this year. It was chilly today—14 degrees—but we were dressed for it, so we weren't cold at all. I'll try to post more of my photos soon. I hope you all have a wonderful New Year!