- Survived hosting the Hanukkah party. I grew up with Southern hospitality and good breeding, but having my house full of people is, like, my least favorite thing in the world. At least these were good people that I really like. That helps. A lot.
- The house is clean. Cuz we cleaned it. For the party.
- This year is one day closer to finished.
30 December 2016
29 December 2016
Had a couple of really bad days there, days in which I probably should have looked for the good but just couldn't. But here are some good things from today:
- House is pretty clean. Nothing like hosting a party to spur you to new heights of cleanliness.
- Champagne bought and ready for New Year's Eve.
Additionally, my car has new tires, which I wouldn't have counted as something wonderful given everything that led to it happening, but hey, it's still not a bad thing.
25 December 2016
24 December 2016
23 December 2016
- Was able to swap wheelchairs with no fuss. (The first one had a wheel that kept going flat.) This one works better for my son to sit at the table, too.
- Almost done with editing . . . except now I'm actually rewriting the ending of this novel. It's only the last ~40 pages. Hope to have it done soon.
- Drawful. Love family game night!
22 December 2016
21 December 2016
- Was able to rent a wheelchair for my son. He's supposed to remain in bed with his leg elevated most of the time, but now he can at least sit with us at dinner.
. . .
In truth, it was a day that was difficult to find the good in. It's as if 2016 is trying to get some final digs in, and not small ones. Here's hoping tomorrow will be a fresh start of sorts and more good can happen.
20 December 2016
19 December 2016
18 December 2016
17 December 2016
16 December 2016
15 December 2016
14 December 2016
- A day without errands or appointments. Aaaah.
- Unearthing old writing and anime/manga treasures (while searching for something else, but it was still fun to find these things).
- Re-reading and reliving one of those old manga. The tragedy of Subaru/Seishirou rivals Shakespeare. Seriously.
13 December 2016
12 December 2016
10 December 2016
09 December 2016
- Mobile enough to rush my son's clarinet to him at the last minute because he forgot it (and music is the first class of the day).
- Lost another pound. (I've gone back to monitoring my calorie intake, and I've now lost four pounds.)
- 1053 entries into my Goodreads giveaway! I'm so glad it was a success!
08 December 2016
07 December 2016
06 December 2016
05 December 2016
04 December 2016
- It's not broken, just sprained.*
- Nice chat with my dad.
- Finished the draft of the book I've been writing.
So last night, after that nice chat with my dad, I was taking some trash out. When I turned around to go back inside, I saw our little black cat sticking his nose out. He's an indoor cat, so I picked up my foot to nudge him back inside, but then my other foot gave way under me and I fell. I thought for sure I'd somehow broken my foot or ankle, but after a trip to Urgent Care this morning it turns out I've sprained a ligament. They told me that can hurt just as much as a broken bone, and yeah, it hurt all right. I'm on crutches now. But at least it's not broken.
02 December 2016
01 December 2016
30 November 2016
29 November 2016
28 November 2016
27 November 2016
26 November 2016
25 November 2016
24 November 2016
20 November 2016
19 November 2016
17 November 2016
16 November 2016
- My orthodontist sanded between my teeth. Like, basically flossing with sandpaper (or diamond grit paper in this case). And it didn't hurt. I count that as good.
- Finished writing a chapter that felt like it had been going on forever.
- Ramen. It's kind of dumb, but I actually really enjoy eating it now and then.
15 November 2016
14 November 2016
13 November 2016
12 November 2016
11 November 2016
After a few days away, I'm back on the Good Things train. It's been difficult--it still is difficult--in the wake of the U.S. election, but life can't stop. It can change, but it needs to keep going forward.
- Mother/daughter time complete with hawks, hummingbirds, and bunnies.
- Curling up with a really good book.
- Hilarity in attempting to play a board game my son created.
05 November 2016
04 November 2016
03 November 2016
02 November 2016
31 October 2016
28 October 2016
- Trick-or-Door at the kids' school. It's a stupid name, but the kids love it, and they looked great in their costumes. Also, I got to hang out with a fellow mom for part of it, so that was nice.
- More rain, but it cleared up before we had to go out.
- Finishing the book I'd been reading.
27 October 2016
25 October 2016
24 October 2016
23 October 2016
22 October 2016
20 October 2016
- Last parent-teacher conference, and it was a great one! My oldest son is doing a great job at school.
- Had a chance to meet and chat with a friend/fellow writer I met at a writing conference this past summer. Was really nice to catch up. Also, fantastic weather for sitting outside.
- Good writing group meeting. Only my second time, and I really like the group. It's nice to have found people to meet with again. (Ones that won't behave like Mean Girls.)
19 October 2016
18 October 2016
17 October 2016
16 October 2016
- Hosting a Facebook party for a dear writer friend. I'd never done that before, and it was really fun!
- A new review for Manifesting Destiny that recommends fans of Harry Potter and Percy Jackson read it. Wow! What a compliment!
- Finally got to watch Timeless, and it's as cute as I hoped it would be.
15 October 2016
14 October 2016
13 October 2016
- Though it took almost three hours and was really cold in the waiting room, the guys at my car dealership were also really nice to me and gave me cookies. And my car got fixed. (Not that it was broken, exactly, but there was a recall that required them to do something.)
- I still had time for a quick lunch after the car thing and before I had to go pick up the kids.
12 October 2016
11 October 2016
09 October 2016
I've been away at a conference, so there are a lot of great things:
- Meeting so many warm and welcoming authors who happily took me under their wings and included me in their ranks.
- Getting to dress up! And get my hair and makeup done!
- DRAGON! It looked just like Livian, too...
- Getting to take pictures with lovely cover models. (Yes, I'm susceptible to such charms. *swoon*)
- Hearing from the director for my next short film. Yay for progress! We're starting to talk casting...
- Sitting on panels—again, with such amazing authors.
- Being invited to eat breakfast with these amazing authors. Who were willing to give me advice and help me out by discussing book contracts and suggesting other cons for me to attend! I just cannot get over how great these people were to me. I don't know why I expected anything different, but wow.
- Being able to sell Manifesting Destiny to a school librarian. I hope her students love it!
- Seeing my wonderful new friends win RONE awards.
- Getting to see my dear friend Kimberley, who I haven't seen in over a year.
- Coming home to my loving family.
07 October 2016
06 October 2016
04 October 2016
- Hawk! It swooped over me as I was walking this morning, close enough that I felt it in my hair. I watched it grab a mouse from the field, then it went into a nearby tree and ate its breakfast.
- Nice lunch with my mother-in-law.
- Salon night! Hair and nails ready for InD'Scribe in two days!
01 October 2016
30 September 2016
28 September 2016
27 September 2016
- Doing the lockdown drill with my son's class while in the school library. I wouldn't necessarily count this as "good" except I was able to explain to them that we had to stay quiet and still "because a T-Rex is loose." It became a game, and they liked that.
- Talking to my daughter's class about writing. Those kids were great!
- Thai food for lunch. It was a long morning and I earned it.
26 September 2016
25 September 2016
24 September 2016
23 September 2016
22 September 2016
- Meeting a new friend for tea.
- Discovering a great new tea house.
- Meeting a new writer.
Yesterday was remarkably social for me, which is kind of exhausting for an introvert, but rewarding too. Normally I wouldn't schedule two outings on the same day but somehow it fell out this way, and I survived! Not only that but enjoyed most of it.
21 September 2016
- I was good and didn't eat fast food for lunch even though I really wanted to.
- Another day in which I didn't have to drive anywhere.
- Chatting with a dear friend on the phone. I don't love the phone, but there are two or three people I don't mind spending time with that way—people who mean so much to me that any way I can spend time with them is good.
20 September 2016
19 September 2016
- Getting lots of writing done. Am now approximately 20% through the Changers sequel.
- News from the bookseller at the upcoming conference that my books had arrived. (Well, the first shipment anyway.)
- Not having to go out and run any errands. There were plenty of chores, but I got to stay in out of the heat.
17 September 2016
16 September 2016
- Family picnic night at the kids' school.
- Finding out the school mascot's name is Ace!*
- Documentary Now! is back.
*The kids' school is something like 15 years old and their mascot is "The Wildcat." But they got a new principal this year and she felt like The Wildcat should have a name. So there was a nomination process, and "Ace" is the name I nominated. (I think other people also submitted it; the school's initials reduce to ACE, so it makes sense.) It made the short list, and then it won! Yay!
I'll be honest. It's been a tough week. I'm fighting a cold and there have just been a million other things... But I'm still grateful. I'm grateful for having a home, and clothes, and food, and clean water. It's more than a lot of people in this world have. I'm grateful that I'm able to do the work I love as a writer. I'm grateful that I have bright, beautiful children and that a cold is the worst thing wrong with me when so many others have chronic and terminal illnesses. I really have no reason or right to complain. So I won't.
11 September 2016
09 September 2016
08 September 2016
07 September 2016
06 September 2016
05 September 2016
- Fun time at the neighbor's birthday pool party & potluck.
- Many requests for Changers 2. At least I know people want to read it!
- Continuing to gather what I need for the conference next month. Feel like I'm close to done, which worries me because that usually means I'm forgetting something.
04 September 2016
03 September 2016
- My daughter's birthday. She chose In-N-Out Burger for lunch followed by Cold Stone ice cream for dessert. The look on her face when she got the books she's been wanting and when we gave her the plush Puss In Boots was priceless.
- Finishing a draft of the short script for the director.
- Chats with my mom and my friend Abby.
02 September 2016
01 September 2016
31 August 2016
30 August 2016
29 August 2016
27 August 2016
25 August 2016
24 August 2016
23 August 2016
- Writing again! I'd barely done any over the summer, so it feels so good to stretch those writing muscles!
- A reviewer agreed to look at Manifesting Destiny. It's been very difficult to land reviewers; they're all so swamped.
- Kids continue to enjoy school. Sure, it was only the second day, but I feel like setting the tone early goes a long way toward having a good year overall.
22 August 2016
21 August 2016
19 August 2016
18 August 2016
17 August 2016
- My youngest's birthday. I took him to the store to pick out a cake, and he chose breakfast for dinner.
- Getting entrenched in an astrological report I was writing for a friend. It took a while, but it's not work when you're enjoying it.
- I'm also really enjoying Wolf Hall (the novel). Found a copy of it at Half-Price Books. Glad I gave it a go.
16 August 2016
- Back-to-school shopping, which I always find a bit fun, plus it means the kids will finally be going back to school!
- Getting the kids' classroom assignments, and also running into other moms I haven't seen all summer.
- Winning wine in the raffle! Really, this school seems intent on giving me wine. Last spring I ended up with more than our cabinet could hold and now there's more!
15 August 2016
It's not that nothing good has happened the past few days, it's that I was away at a conference in NYC. And lots of great stuff happened! So here's a partial list of all the positive things I'm grateful for these past few days:
- Extra legroom on the plane.
- Sitting next to French people and surprising them with my (very rusty) French.
- A short taxi line.
- Being made Guest of the Day at the hotel, which got me a great upgrade, free wifi, and access to the Executive Lounge.
- Meeting fun new people.
- Not having to pitch.
- Lots of great information and advice.
- Running into Steven James in the elevator and him giving me advice for when I do my first panel in October.
- Kwame Alexander telling me he loves my hair.
- Lots of other people telling me they love my hair.
- People telling me they think my chrome toenails are cool.
- Drink vouchers.
- Views of Central Park at dawn and dusk and during a lightning storm.
- Dr Pepper in the hotel cafe.
- Invitations to dinner with fellow writers.
- Discovering Ippuku.
- Learning there's an Ippuku in Berkeley.
- Upgrades to the exit row for the flight home.
- Being sent to TSA Pre-check and not having to take off my shoes.
- Surreal 4-way stops between shuttle buses and 747s.
- Coming home.
08 August 2016
07 August 2016
- Twix ice cream bar.
- Perfect weather.
. . . I'm at a loss for #3. It wasn't a bad day but also wasn't anything special. Though I suppose I should count every day as special just because I'm alive and well. I'm mostly feeling anxious about my new book. I'm desperate for it to do well, and that's coloring my mood at the moment.
06 August 2016
04 August 2016
03 August 2016
02 August 2016
01 August 2016
31 July 2016
30 July 2016
29 July 2016
28 July 2016
27 July 2016
26 July 2016
- The Changers: Manifesting Destiny cover! It's amazing!!!
- Walking with the kids to and from lunch. Also, lunch.
- Crazy squirrel outside my office window barking at me. We had a very nice conversation.
Sixteen-year-old Cee has a hopeless crush on her best friend Marcus. Unfortunately for her, he's gay. In the wake of Marcus's older brother leaving home to join the Aerie, Marcus has become increasingly distant. Then, when Cee discovers she has a troublesome dragon named Livian living inside her things grow even more complicated.
Marcus urges Cee to go to the Magi to have Livian removed, but the more used to Livian Cee becomes, the less certain she is about letting him go. Should she change her natural self for the crush who will never love her anyway?
25 July 2016
23 July 2016
21 July 2016
19 July 2016
16 July 2016
13 July 2016
12 July 2016
11 July 2016
09 July 2016
08 July 2016
07 July 2016
06 July 2016
04 July 2016
03 July 2016
01 July 2016
30 June 2016
29 June 2016
28 June 2016
27 June 2016
24 June 2016
21 June 2016
20 June 2016
19 June 2016
18 June 2016
16 June 2016
15 June 2016
14 June 2016
13 June 2016
- Awards day at the kids' school. Each of them brought home a couple. Very proud of them!
- Edits arrived from my publisher. This is a good thing—progress—though I'm very nervous about some of what I've seen so far.
- I did a workout AND had the willpower not to snack after dinner. Yay!
12 June 2016
09 June 2016
08 June 2016
06 June 2016
01 June 2016
31 May 2016
28 May 2016
26 May 2016
23 May 2016
22 May 2016
21 May 2016
18 May 2016
- Getting out of the house, even if only to do grocery shopping.
- Shorts weather. (I look so much better brown than yellow.)*
- A hummingbird hanging out by my office window.
*I'm Creole. In the winter I turn this sort of yellow color, but once we start getting sun again, I turn toasty brown.
16 May 2016
14 May 2016
13 May 2016
12 May 2016
11 May 2016
10 May 2016
- Time out with friends.
- Date night.
- Very British Problems.
Date night included painting pottery at an art café, dinner at an Afghani restaurant, pastries at a French patisserie, walking around downtown and then going for a drive through wine country while watching the sun set. Also, almost getting locked in a regional park by the ranger. Would've made for a great story, but I'm glad we didn't!
08 May 2016
- Day started with doughnuts, flowers, and handmade cards from the kids.
- Lunch out at a Chinese restaurant followed by ice cream from my favorite local place (chocolate with marshmallow topping).
- Calling my mom.
- Ordering a couple treats for myself online (a Sagittarius pendant and new Lenormand deck).
- Pizza for dinner. Then a workout because have you seen everything I ate today?
Of course, the day was punctuated by the fact my oldest son was punchy from being overtired. He actually sleepwalked down to dinner, took a couple bites of pizza and then wandered off. He hasn't sleepwalked in a long, long time, so I'd forgotten what that's like. He woke up later thinking it was time to get up for school when it was still evening. Just super confused and out of it. Sort of funny but also I felt bad for him. He has state testing all this week at school, so it's important that he get enough rest.
Speaking of which, I also need some sleep. So off I go . . .
07 May 2016
06 May 2016
05 May 2016
02 May 2016
01 May 2016
30 April 2016
29 April 2016
You know what I'm most grateful for? That in the big scheme of things, all the important things in my life are good. I'm healthy. My family is healthy. We have food, clothes, and shelter. We are (mostly, usually) happy. This isn't me bragging. This is me putting things into perspective. I fuss when I don't hear from my editor or publisher, I'm sad when my sales aren't as good as I'd like them to be. But in the big, big picture, those are small, small concerns. I am so very fortunate. My goal is to keep that in mind whenever I'm tempted to start complaining or bemoaning.
28 April 2016
Sorry! I know I've been remiss in posting three good things each day. Thing is, I'm struggling a bit to find those things. My days have been pretty dull, plus I'm mostly waiting on news and information from various sources. This is no excuse, I realize. The point is to find three good things regardless, no matter how small. So here goes.
- My garden is really beautiful right now. Everything blooming, just a riot of color.
- Warmer weather is coming. I may be able to break out my shorts soon.
- Getting back into workouts. I don't always love doing them, but I feel so much better about myself when I do.
24 April 2016
21 April 2016
20 April 2016
19 April 2016
18 April 2016
17 April 2016
16 April 2016
15 April 2016
14 April 2016
13 April 2016
11 April 2016
10 April 2016
08 April 2016
07 April 2016
06 April 2016
We've been getting away in Vegas for a few days. Many good things to recount!
- A beautiful dinner at Picasso, sitting outside by the Bellagio fountain as the sun goes down.
- Secret Pizza.
- Winning. (Thanks, Cleopatra!)
- Fabulous dinner at Andrea's.
- Le Rêve.
- Breakfast on the terrace at Mon Ami Gabi.
02 April 2016
- Hiking with the family.
- Beautiful weather.
- Finding out about the cat that comes into our yard sometimes.*
*We've always called the cat GiGi (as in G.G., as in "Grey Ghost" because she's grey). But it turns out her name is Alley, as in "Alley Cat." She lives on the street behind ours. She was on our front porch about to head into our garden, which isn't unusual. GiGi/Alley likes to go sleep on our patio furniture. But her owner had spotted her and had come up to the house to try and get the cat back. Just as well because the hummingbird mama who lives in the climbing roses by the porch was ready to take the cat on. She was buzzing all around GiGi's head. Anyway, the owner told me the cat's name is Alley (and she even said, "as in Alley Cat") and where she lived and such. I told her we didn't mind if and when the cat visited. It's all good. Fun way to meet a neighbor.
01 April 2016
- An invitation to present at a writing conference in October.
- A shipment of Big Red goodies! Including a taste test of the Big Red Float.
- Time spent reading. It's great when you have a good book to lose yourself in.
And none of these are jokes! I'm not really much for the whole April Fool's thing. Practical jokes are one of my least favorite forms of entertainment.