I took 220 pictures yesterday. Unfortunately, I was 200 pictures into my photo-snapping spree when I noticed a setting had been changed, so most of them were fairly well ruined. Happily, I still wound up with a couple of shots that make me smile even thinking about them. So I decided to share the cute. Happy Monday, all!
Hello my wonderful friends! If you detect a bit of cheer in my voice, that's because today is the first day of spring. The past few weeks have been insanely busy, even more so than usual, but I don't mind so much because my favorite season is upon me: gardening season!
Things are going well at Vox Dei, though it's sucking up the bulk of my time at the moment. Some days, it feels like I barely get through my emails, let alone tackle my ever-growing to-do list. I don't mind, though, because I know there are few people out there who truly, deeply love what they do and I'm blessed to be one of them.
I'm transitioning over my book reviewing duties at Word Menagerie for a couple of reasons, one being time. The other is that as the managing director of a publishing imprint, I really shouldn't be reviewing books still. (If you follow that blog, be sure to stop by tomorrow for an announcement!) Hopefully, once I've stopped reviewing books I'll have more time to dedicate to writing my own. I'm woefully behind my self-imposed schedule for Vance's stories and I have a whole slew of others I want to get to. Sometimes I really do wish I could just hook the computer up to my brain and think the books into existence. But I imagine I'd lose something in no longer having the brain-to-finger-to-keyboard relationship. Usually my fingers come up with things my brain never expected.
The exciting news around our house this week is that we got a new(er) vehicle. Reggie the Jeep gave us a couple of good years, but he's ready to take it a little easier now, so he's passing the baton to Oscar the Blazer. The next step in our quest to live on cash instead of credit, he's in a lot better shape than Reggie was when we bought him, so we're hoping for a good run with him. (Although Reggie was pretty impressive given his age and how danged cheap he was...) Maybe someday we'll have the cash saved for a brand-spanking-new car but I doubt it. Besides, used vehicles have character.
A mom isn't supposed to have favorites. I'm not sure if the same applies to writers. I hope not, because I'm kind of partial to Vance. It's made me a little crazy how many obstacles I've hit with trying to get his story out there - sometimes it seems the entire universe is conspiring to keep these stories from happening. Or maybe it's more my own inability to focus... whatever the reason, I'm thrilled beyond words to finally be able to reveal the cover for the second installment of the Vance Davis Dossier!
I love ducks. They are such happy little gossips; they bring such joy to the farm. Last fall, I sold the last of our ducks because I didn't think I had a good enough house to winter them properly. It's been almost six months since we had ducks on our farm, and I couldn't stand it any longer. I decided this week that we needed baby ducks. (Yes, needed them.)
When I get it in my head that I need a particular farm animal, I get a little obsessive about it. The hunt for the one particular breed of whatever can get a tad absurd as I search high and low for "the one." Over the years, some of the chicken breeds I've gotten a bee in my bonnet over have included: Speckled Sussex, Silver-laced Wyandottes, Marans, Welsummers, Easter Eggers, Polish, and Salmon Faverolles. (I'm a bit of a collector - I like having variety in my flock.)
So when I got it in my head I wanted ducks this week, I went to the local farm store for the launch of "Chick Days." (Which, in case you were wondering, is the real beginning of spring.) When I got there, they had Speckled Sussex, Silver-laced Wyandottes, Marans, Welsummers, Easter Eggers, Polish, and Salmon Faverolles. But no ducks. And so the hunt began.
It ended today when I struck gold. I arrived at the hatchery just before closing on hatching day. It took a lot of restraint to only leave with six ducklings (three breeds.) A lot of restraint.
But we're now the proud owners of a pair of Rouens, a pekin hen, and three Anconas of unknown gender. We've always had Anconas and Pekins in the mix of our duck flock. The Rouens are new for us - they'll grow up to look like really big mallards. I'm already head over heels in love with them. I have no idea how I survived six whole months with no ducks.
Chris: Hey Mom, do you have any more books you’re writing after you’re done with the third Vance short story?
Me: Actually, I have like 9 books in the project queue right now.
Chris: Well, when you’re done with those, could you help me with something?
Me: Um, sure. What’s up?
Chris: If I give you a synopsis, could you write my book for me - you know, work your magic?
Blake: Our life is like Minecraft, only a lot harder.
Blake: I yearn to urinate
Chris: I like WTF
Me: Excuse me?
Chris: Isn’t that the horse store we just passed?
Me: That was PFI
Chris: Oh. What’s WTF?
Dylan: Do you believe in supernatural phenomena?
Chris: I believe in Canadians
Dylan: No, man, Canadians aren’t real.
Adam: They’re an urban legend.
It's been a horrible year around here for eggs. Chickens in our neck of the woods seem to have forgotten that they have a purpose besides lawn ornament. The going theory around here is they're all off-kilter from last winter. Whatever the cause, mine have finally remembered their calling in life - they're finally giving me big, beautiful eggs again.
I love my girls, I love having an abundance of eggs, and I love the rainbow in my egg carton. So pretty... It's easy to pick out the eggs that were laid by my young hens. They're the ones that don't quite fill their spot!
As I mentioned earlier this week, I'm a bit of a tomboy. I don't usually take time for things like manicures - and things like Jamberry nail wraps are completely foreign to me.
Since I'm co-hosting a fundraiser this weekend for the Liberty for Anna fundraiser, I decided I've give the nail wraps a try.
Here's what my nails looked like to start with. Mind you, I had to cut them completely off in January for goat kidding season, so they're really short.
I watched the official Jamberry application video and rounded up my supplies. Since I'm barely a girl, I didn't have most of them, so I improvised.
I was pleasantly surprised with how easy it was. I mean really easy. It took about fifteen minutes, and that's only because I didn't know what I was doing. I did this because of the fundraiser, but I seriously think I'll start keeping nail wraps around for my one girly indulgence. They're an easy way to do something special just for me. (And when I order from Rachel Frost, I know I'm also fighting human trafficking.) The added and unexpected bonus is that I told my guys I can't do dishes today since I'm not supposed to submerge my nails for a few hours after application. Darn. And I smile every time I look down at my nails. They're kinda happy today.