Christmas prep

December tenth, and time is slipping past me. I’ve carefully budgeted my time down to the hour most days, in order to get everything done.

Exercise in the wee hours, snatching ten minutes of writing here and there, work, kids, spending time with friends and family whenever possible.

December’s exhausting, and I haven’t even gotten to the meat and potatoes of it!

Today was a holly jolly day, with a lovely brunch with two lovely ladies, then writing in silence for an hour and returning home for Christmas baking.

The kids have gotten good at decorating, although the amount of icing was suspect.

Especially suspect was the surreptitious licking that happened the moment I turned my back.

Between the sugar cookies and the gingerbread choo choo train, there’s been a lot of sugar in the house this weekend.

Luckily, I’ve finished the baking now, most of the presents are wrapped and it’s not past my bedtime.

I’ll fold the clothes tomorrow.

And be better with my diet.

In January.

Saturday Date night

Another Saturday bites the dust, one less of my 4000 left.

( I’d been listening to a podcast, and one of the speakers has that as their website, which gave me a sad glimpse into how many Saturday’s I have left. Not nearly enough.)

So I made the most of this one.

I cleaned, cooked and laundried, made Christmas ornaments with all three children,

before eventually taking my 5&6 year olds out to Tommyk play.

(Little dude got to nap with daddy instead, as he’s taken to waking up at 4:30 lately. Little jerk.)

Anyway, the older two ran around happily for two hours before I attempted to fatten them up with McDonald’s, then we bought groceries to make Christmas cookies.

Apparently they are quite into counting, and when I called them monkey one and monkey two, the six year old informed the ladies at the cash,

“there’s five of us, you know.”

Mortified, I set them straight, and walked away.

I can hardly handle three littles, five would likely kill me.

I returned home with enough time to make peanut butter balls and kiss the kids goodnight before taking out my hacking husband for a low key movie date.

I’d wanted to see Murder on the Orient Express since the first time I’d seen the preview. I’d gone through an Agatha Christie phase almost twenty years ago, but the movie was well above my expectations.

It left me with questions of everyday morality,

about the degree to which we, as humans, decide what’s right or wrong.

What’s good or evil.

More than just sweeping landscapes and amazing actors,

I walked away thinking,

What would I do?

Which to me is the hallmark of a truly great movie.

Next on my list-

The greatest show in the world.

Maybe next Saturday.

Christmas season

The season has fully kicked off.

After a full day of work, I quickly ran to buy a few presents for the gift exchange before getting home with just enough time to put the appetizers in the oven before the first guests showed up.

Our first work Christmas party for our new clinic.

Small but wonderful.

The feeling of family and way too much food feeling me up while I somehow managed to varnish the counter with chicken wings.

The kids ran around, content with their tribe, having the culture of childhood to entertain them.

Presents were exchanged, laughter and food shared, then all too quickly the night was over and we separated to go our individual ways.

Christmas season is once a year, but it would be nice if the feeling of warmth could last all year.

Christmas goodies

Something about this time of year leads me down a bad and uncomfortable road.

This road is paved with good intentions, but it creates the urge to gorge myself on all the Christmas goodies.

I start off so strong, then think, hmmm, just one… and then one turns into all of its friends and an overly full stomach.

And there’s still over three weeks of this to go. I’m in deep trouble if the first week of December is anything to go by.

With a stomach full of regret tonight, I vow again to go slow. The food is not scarce at this time of year, and delicious things are always available.

Chill, inner child.

Sleepyhead

His halo shines

Angelic in the light

Saintly is his sleeping face,

Quietly breathing in the night.

He fell asleep with a little gasp

Fighting to the last

Now I sit here silently,

until alertness has past.

My little boy,

My bright small one

I love you more each day,

my little man, my sun.

Tech wars

Today, I braved a world I’m deeply afraid of. I’d never wanted to relocate away from the Luddite village where I was comfortable, more at home in the world of paperbacks and handwritten letters.

And it wasn’t easy. I shed real tears after spending money, partly for spending the money, partly for messing up the email and losing it. Luckily, customer support was amazing and saved my bacon.

So now after about five hours of tears, sweat, but luckily no blood, I have hooked up my author page to a mailing list. Yes, step one on the road to “things authors should do to ensure a market for their books” has been completed.

A webpage, twitter account, Facebook page. Done.

Book one for sale, book two on preorder, with the paperback hopefully getting approval in the next few days.

Now, to spread the word beyond my (very supportive) family and friends. This is truly the most difficult part when you just want to hole up and make pretty stories. But like every child, they need to eventually go out into the world and support themselves.

Fly free my babies, go pay your own bills!

Book 2- kindle preorder 🙂

End of work days

A hazy patina coats my eyes,

blurred with the haste of the day

Emotions and ails,

wounds and fails

Everything crossing my way

I lurch with fatigue

And struggle to breathe

Wondering how to get by,

I let out a sigh

and try not to bleed

I stumble through the door,

grateful to sit,

A long days work

Can never be shirked

Until it’s five, and time to quit

Sunday afternoon and the Christmas tree

Today was full of events, big and small, good and bad. It was a full Sunday of everyday moments.

I snuggled my little guy as he woke up, at 5 am today, and somehow convinced him to come to the garage while I exercised. He was still tired I think, likely why it was successsful.

I finished my final edits ( ha! For now, anyway) on my second book. I’m not sure if it was the caffeine or the sheer relief, but I almost flew home, with little birdies in my chest.

When I arrived at the manor, my children were on tenterhooks while they danced excitedly around the tree that had just been placed in the living room.

We decorated and made foam decorations (on sale at Michaels!) and had hot chocolate and popcorn.

They became wound up when I produced the advent calendar, only 3 days late, then I fought with my two year old for the remainder of the day about not eating the rest of the chocolate.

I know it’s hard buddy, I know.

Supper, dishes, story and bed. My excitement had crashed, energy depleted. My two year old crashed too, head first into a wall while I watched. He says his nose hurts, and maybe slightly blue now.

Tomorrow is work and my day job, but my sense of accomplishment over this weekend will carry me through the week. Well, that, and coffee of course.

Saturday morning

I’m really feeling my age today. Stuff and creaky when I got up, I padded around getting the couch ready for my early morning riser.

Never sleeping past six am on days when I’m home, he opens his door slowly and I hear him call for me. Carrying his favorite blue blanket, he sits on the couch with half open eyes, demanding “puppies, snack, and sucky”

We spend almost every day together alone before everyone else gets out of bed, and while part of me wishes he’d sleep in longer, a larger part enjoys these stolen silent moments early in the day.

He’s my last, my little one, and growing so fast.

He engages me more now, while watching his show, wanting me to acknowledge him, watch what he’s watching. He tells me stories about his interests, and snuggles under my arm tightly.

I sigh deeply, breathing in the early morning and soft warm smell of sleepy child.

Each day a precious gift.

Ragnarok

Friday. My end of the week. Still struggling with my altered, torch singer-with-a-cold voice, I headed to work already dreaming about the end of the day.

Once again, an early day… that morphed into a late day, causing me to be so grateful I hadn’t booked myself for clinic. By the time I left job 1, I had just enough time to get to parent teacher interviews, and by the time I left it was already three pm. This meant a quick sit down for an hour while I zoomed through paperwork and arrived at home at exactly 4:30

No writing time, no break. Until I was reminded of the babysitter coming for 5.

I grateful snuggled my trio just long enough for them to commence Thunderdome over who got my lap, then I headed out the door with my love.

Appetizers aplenty for supper, Diet can start again tomorrow, then a quick zip next door to watch Thor.

Until this series of movies, Thor has never done it for me. But for some reason, he is the superhero I can most identify with.

It could be the blond hair, his love and trust of others around him, but I think it’s his grace and smarts that get me.

I too have been known to break items by looking at them, and have had many times where I’ve missed the punch line.

Thor: Ragnarok however was my favorite movie of the bunch so far. Freakin hilarious, his hands “sparkle”- according to Jeff Goldblum’s character, who was as awesome as his kooky characters always are.

The whole thing was a great mix of funny, action and music and I left feeling like it was very possible I have magic powers too, I just haven’t discovered them.

And while it may not be the real Ragnarok, I’d love for my cold to be destroyed by fire as well, and will likely use my magic powers tonight for good. Like Thor.