It’s May, it’s May…

April went fast, didn’t it? Actually, the first third of the year vanished fairly quickly. I know I’ve been doing things (taxes always seem to rob me of early April), but the time always manages to surprise me.

Tonight, my daughter’s Brownies troop (Girl Scouts) are doing a Mother’s Day dinner. We were warned to bring appetites and told “all bets on diets are off 🙂 desserts will be served!” Which, of course, is why I’m posting my blog now, rather than doing it during her meeting while I wait for her (my usual m.o.). So, time with my daughter — first thing I’m grateful for today. Continue reading


group of owl figures

In junior year of high school, we had to keep a writing journal in English class. At a loss of what to write one day, I started off with transcribing what I could remember of a dream where an owl was taking me to another land to help my friends, and when the owl landed, I asked it who it was. It said, “Don’t you know? I’m you.” Eventually, this morphed into an ongoing storyline with all sorts of friends inserted as characters. (And of course, we all had magical powers and could shape-change into specific animals and had fated true loves … *ahem* It was high school.)

Anyway, ever since, I’ve always felt a fondness for owls (which retroactively included the metalwork owl in Clash of the Titans and any other version of Athena’s chosen messenger). My kids discovered this a couple of years ago, so now owls are one of their go-to presents for me. Hence, the collection that lives on my desk and keeps me company as I work.

Today, I’m grateful for ever-present reminders of my kids’ love. What are you grateful for?

Visit from a friend 

Pleasant break from routine this week — my friend Bonnie’s in town for a few days. I haven’t seen her since Boskone last year, although we do chat online more days than not. (Apologies for the blurry photo.)


One of the things we did was to finish up a jigsaw puzzle. (Yes, it’s the same image as the journal I posted about. When my daughter and I saw it at the store, she said I had to get it.)

completed jigsaw puzzle

Still did practical things, though — finished copyediting a civil engineering article, did some work on the (soon to be unveiled) Nebula websites, mailed off all the tax returns (including business tax returns that aren’t due until beginning of May), and took my daughter to her Girl Scouts meeting.

Lots to be grateful for here, from Bonnie’s visit to taxes done. What are you grateful for this week?

Life with kids

Liquid nitrogen and burning ships, that’s life with my kids.
Friday, I helped chaperone a field trip to the local science museum (DaVinci Science Center) for my daughter’s class. She found the demonstration of adding liquid nitrogen to boiling water fascinating. (Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures of the resulting cloud.) She and her friends also made slime, experimented with levers, played in a submarine, crawled through a dark tunnel, and learned all sorts of cool and gross facts about animals. I mostly got tired legs, but it was great to see the excitement on their faces. (Of course, my daughter didn’t want to leave at the end of the day.

Then a few times over the weekend (and again tonight), I played a co-op board game with my son. Dead Men Tell No Tales is a very fun game that we haven’t managed to win yet. Our current working hypothesis is that three is the optimal number of players: one each to deal with deckhands, fire, and treasure, but not so many that half the trapdoors are out before anyone even gets a second turn. It sounds complicated, and it is, a little, but it’s a fun challenge where we keep thinking that just a slight modification of our tactics will produce the desired result.

end of a game

So today, I’m grateful for time with my kids. What are you grateful for today?

April, no foolin’

The magnolias are blooming right now. There are some huge ones — towering over the houses they’re planted next to. I wish my mom could come visit to see, as they’re so much bigger than the one we had in Golden Valley. I took some pictures of the ones near the downtown library last week. Aren’t they lovely? Continue reading

Bleary days

Had a terrific weekend with the Parade of Shamrocks on Saturday and gaming with friends on Sunday. However, getting up this morning wasn’t the easiest thing between the dark and the rain. I know, I know, I’m far from the only person to observe the difficulty in getting up today.

But I have online friends in chat, in forums, on social media, on blogs — and all of you make it worth it. Thank you!


Marching forward

It’s a gorgeous spring day with croci blooming!

So much to be grateful for today — warm weather, flowers, walking, a wonderful city library, prompt payment by clients!
yellow crocus blooming in leaves from last fall

Life is good here, and I am grateful for all I have. What are you grateful for this week?

Leap Day!

I worked most of the weekend, catching up on freelance projects that should have been done last week, so I felt no guilt in taking today mostly to putter around at this and that.

Things I did:

  • Wrote 123 words on Treachery (first words in a while)
  • Chatted with other writers online
  • Read more of the current book
  • Tackled sending my first e-mail with MailChimp (I’ve been using Mailman)

"The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude." FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE
Still on tap for the evening:

  • Dinner
  • Drawing with my daughter
  • More reading
  • Maybe even some thoughts on story structure

So mostly today, I’m thankful for a nice quiet day. What are you grateful for?

Progress already

Today’s gratitude is easy to point to: I had an appointment for my annual exam, scheduled months ago, and I discovered that in the past 2 weeks, I have dropped 4 pounds, and my systolic (although still high) has dropped 8 points. Which means I’m on the right track, and — who’d’a thunk it? — eating healthy food and exercising really does make a difference.

Also, I am grateful for Sam, who sleeps with dragons (or anything else soft he can get his nose on).

Sleeps With Dragons

What are you grateful for today?

Another long weekend

At least this weekend was planned — the school district always does a four-day weekend for Presidents’ Day (unless they’re trying to make up for missed snow days). Usually, I like to spend this long weekend in Boston at Boskone, but this year, the convention is scheduled for next weekend, so that’s a non-starter.

Currently, we have snow falling and it’s so cold outside that even the salt on the roads isn’t melting it. This is due to change within the next twelve hours, however, and the snow should be rain by morning — which means the kids will not have a delay. Yay!

Honestly, though, they’ve been pretty good about letting me work. My son was designing something in Minecraft that he wanted me to look at, and my daughter wants someone to play with her on the couch, but I got done what I needed to do for the day. Can’t complain about that. In fact, since I did get done what I was aiming for, I think I will go play with the girl for a bit.

Before the snow fell, however, most of the ground was bare, and the starling flock that migrates through (both fall and spring) was visiting our front yard. I got a few pictures, including one lovely shot of them on the wing. Enjoy!
starlings in flight