Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Friday Five

Seabiscuit Breyer Horse

This week's Friday Five is:

Five favorite toys from my childhood:

1. Breyer model horses. I had lots of them and spent HOURS (dare I say weeks and months and years) playing with them.

2. Romper Stompers. We didn't have the store-bought kind. We made our own with Folger's cans and string.

3. EasyBake Oven. Though my little brother broke into the stash of little cake mixes and ate them. He had a ring of chocolate around his mouth and a "Who me?" expression on his face.

4. Glove and softball. The neighbor kids all got together to play "hot box" a game of stealing bases, most every summer evening.

5. The dining room chairs. We used to line them up in the living room and played school bus, and we tipped them back against the couch and played astronaut. :)

What did you play with as a kid?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

The Bible Reading Plan for Slackers.

Bible Study 1

So, a couple of weeks ago, my pastor mentioned that he had a "Bible Reading Plan for Slackers" taped into the front of his Bible. It looked just like the "Read Through The Bible in a Year" plan, except there were no dates beside the passages. Brilliant!

I've started many a Read Through The Bible In a Year (RTtBiaY) plans, and after a few weeks, or even a few days some years, I fall behind, get discouraged, and in a blue funk of guilt, stop reading to a plan altogether. (Tell me I'm not alone here.)

So when he mentioned the Slacker approach, I was immediately intrigued. I mean, I'm a first-class slacker!

Enter the Kindle. I downloaded a free ESV version for Kindle when I first got it, but I never used my e-reader for Scripture reading. But, since I always read for at least a few minutes every night before bed, I thought that would be the perfect time for a slacker to read her Bible.

I started a couple of weeks ago, and I am now in the book of Numbers. (Whew, made it through Leviticus!) If I miss a night, I don't beat myself up over it. I read until I get sleepy.The Kindle keeps my place, so when I fire it up the next night, I can start right where I left off.

Guilt free. The secret is to just read. If you miss a day, there's no date or chart or written code to point you out as a failure. Bliss!

Have you ever read through the Bible? Do you follow a plan?  

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Friday Five Spelling Style

Alphabet blocks #color

This week's Friday Five has to do with Spelling! 

Five words I commonly misspell and have to try over.

1. Calender Calendar. 

2. Exerpt Excerpt

3. Gague Gauge

4. Perserverence Perseverence Perseverance 

5. Definitly Definitely 

I've heard it said a synonym is the word you use when you can't spell the word you wanted to use. :)

Do you have any words you always stumble over?

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Fairy Tales


There is something so timeless and classic about a fairy tale. Good vs. evil. Risking all for love. Magic. The story structure is perfect. Damsel in distress, fragile, innocent, who turns out to be stronger and braver than even she knew. Handsome hero facing impossible odds to save the woman he loves. Talking mirrors, dwarfs, glass slippers, singing candlesticks.

Cinderella, Snow White, Beauty and the Beast. I love them all.

So what's your favorite fairy tale? Who is your favorite villain? 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Friday Five

sock monkey

This week's Friday Five is:

Five quirky things I have in my home office.

1. A sock monkey that my daughter and I made.

2. A Veggie Tales Nativity set that my husband got me for Christmas. I didn't want to put it away after Christmas was over. :)

3. A stuffed frog. When you squeeze his mouth, he sings "I Feel Pretty" from West Side Story. :)

4. A stuffed Kung Fu Panda. Love that movie.

5. A pair of little rubber duckies. :)

All of these things fit my personality. (I'm not sure what that says about me...hmmm) What is something in your office/work space that reflects your personality?

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Novels Are Like Puzzles


I've come to the conclusion that writing a novel is like building a puzzle. The edge pieces are the easiest, the framework. These are things like the setting, the time period, the genre. Then there are some pieces that stand out from the others, that you build first. Like the hero/heroine, goals, conflicts, and motivations. After those chunks of puzzle picture are assembled, it's time for the more subtle areas, the subplots, the subtext, the secondary characters, the glue-scenes that hold everything together.

What is hard to do is building a puzzle with a major section of pieces missing. Which is what I've been trying to do. I couldn't quite see how the elements in my story would combine into a rousing, exciting climax that will make the rest of the story seem as if it had reached an inevitable and natural end.

This weekend, after a productive week on my WIP, I finally found those missing pieces. After trying out lots of possibilities, I found the ending that would work. And I knew it as soon as I jotted it down. THIS is the one. This is the piece that makes all the other pieces make sense. 

Whew! What a relief! I can now begin to layer in the foreshadowing of this final event in the story and write toward this ending with purpose. Woohoo!

My friend Katie Ganshert and her husband are in the process of adopting a child from the Congo. In order to help raise the needed (and considerable) funds, they're holding a Puzzle Piece Fundraiser. You can sponsor a piece of this puzzle, and you can become part of their adoption story. Please consider supporting the Ganshert family, with prayer, with encouragement, with financial gifts. I just know this child God is preparing for them to bring into their family will be blessed and changed forever.

Q4U: When you build a puzzle, do you build the outside pieces first? Do you separate and turn over the pieces before you start building?

Thursday, February 07, 2013

The Friday Five - It's a Shoe Thing!

I Like Shoes

After my daughter and I read Robin Jones Gunn's Sisterchicks Say Oo-La-La! We started using the term 'yummy shoes.' Yummy shoes are shoes that fit great, look great, and match what you're wearing. Shoes you love and can wear all day. 

So, this week's Friday Five is:

My five favorite pairs of shoes.

1. My tennis shoes. I wear these most days. Currently, they are New Balance shoes, tan with a little pale blue.

2. My zippety boots. Suede calf-length with buckles and fake fir. Very warm!

3. My new slippers. Lambswool lined leather slippers with non-slip soles. As a diabetic, I'm not supposed to go barefoot, or even in stocking-feet. A good pair of house-slippers is invaluable.

4. My red sandals. In summer time I don a pair of red, canvas and elastic sandals, purchased at Bealls in Lakeland, FL. If I can't get to Florida, my mama sends me a pair. :) She's kinda awesome that way.

5. My brown quilted Champion brand walking shoes with a criss-cross of brown elastic across the top. So comfy!

How about you? Do you have a pair of yummy shoes? Are you a shoe person? Do you dare to confess how many pairs of shoes you have?

Sunday, February 03, 2013

When the Lights Go Out.

American Football

The lights went out at the *Big Game* and everything changed. (Supposedly, we're not allowed to say the name of the contest without signing a licensing agreement with the NFL.) Anyway, back to last team was creaming the other, and then BAM! The lights went out in half of the stadium, necessitating a half hour stoppage of the game while they figured out who tripped on the cord and the proper launch sequence to reboot the lights.

Once the lights came back up, the team that was getting pasted came roaring back and actually made a game of it. They regrouped, regathered, and recharged. The other team seemed a bit lost for awhile, as if they hadn't quite realized the game was back on. 

Which got me to thinking about how I handle unexpected change. Do I regroup, or do I lose my focus? Do I see an opportunity, or does it derail me? 

How about you? How do you treat unexpected events in your life?

Did you watch the *Big Game*? What was your favorite commercial? Here was one of mine, a continuation of one that aired during the game: El Plato Supremo. (Thanks to Elizabeth S. for pointing me to this video. :) )

Friday, February 01, 2013

The Friday Five

Jayhawks Cheerleaders & Mascot

Today's post has nothing to do with basketball, but it is basketball season, so I thought I'd show a photo of Jay, the Kansas Jayhawks' mascot. :)

I've been struggling to set and keep goals lately. Whether it's tucking into my WIP, keeping up with the bookkeeping, or giving the housework more than a lick and a promise. So this week's Friday Five is:

Five things I want to accomplish this week:

1. Get books entered into the ACFW Carol Awards.

2. Get a gift returned to the store for an exchange.

3. Move my WIP from 22,500 words to 30,000 words. (this will involve sneaking away on Saturday for sure!)

4. Clean off my desk.

5. Make a menu for next week.

How about you? Are you a goal setter?