Tuesday, July 22, 2008
I've not written anything on Ivory since July 11. It is July 22nd now. No good excuses. Just stalled. I'm close to being done! In relative terms anyways. I've got 11 scenes left to write for my first draft to be done. At about 2-3 thousand words apiece we're looking at about 22-33 thousand more words to write. Now If i was at my goal of writing at least 1,000 words every weekday, I'd be done in 22-33 weekdays. Aug 20 - Sept4. Now I'm not at that and I know I will be unable to be at that for part of Aug even if I went into the month at that pace. So we're looking at the end of Sept, beginning of Oct. I can't do it the last half of Oct, I'm my cousins maid of honor. A.K.A. her slave from a week before the wedding until the ceremony is over. My original goal was to have a completed novel before my 22nd birthday. That is still feasible, but not completed ready for querying. Which sucks. I want to be at that point but I won't be. I'm trying my hardest and I'll keep trying that hard. If I'm at least done my first revision/edit by then I'll be happy.
Lesson for today: Goals are wonderful motivators. Sometimes.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Monday, June 30, 2008
I lost about 4.5k of work on Ivory today. Now, that isn't horrible as Ivory was at 90k words. But now I'm back at 86.5k after seeing the lovely 90k mark. Its depressing. *sigh*
Lesson, back up after every session of writing. EVERY SESSION.
Time to try to remember what I already wrote...
Friday, June 27, 2008
Thursday, June 26, 2008
No I didn't magically finish my novel overnight. It is a submission of a short story to a regional magazine back home. I've got another short story that just needs a bit of polish before its ready for the mailbox. Then I have a very short start to a short story that isn't just in need of polish, its in need of finishing. hehe. then of course I have my novel. Desperately in need of finishing, editing, revising, and then polishing. A novel really is the definition of a long-term project. At least for me anyways. Not so great at focusing.
And of course I have ideas for short stories often, so that list will lengthen. However, I will not start my next novel until I finish this one. I will not. Having rough character sketches, rough plot outline, scene tag lines, and some dialog isn't starting the novel. Its prepping the novel. Right? *sigh* I am determined to finish Ivory before devoting myself to Entry into Madness. Crap its already got a title, MMC, FMC, bad guys up the wazoo. Its a thing. I don't want to end up with multiple unfinished novels. I figure if I finish the first one, it will be easier to finish the second one before starting the third and so on down the line. I know I am not at the point where I can be working on multiple novels at once. Many later in my writing adventure but not now. Short stories and a novel is doable.
Laters for now
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Edit: I can tell it was late for me. Its not 55 words short, it's 455 words short. I'm guessing 455 words short matters much more than 55 words short.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Okay. Off to sleep I really should go, but I'm up till midnight at least to check the bank for Andy and I did just drink a small glass of soda.
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
I am trying to write a tone while hes gone, but last night my wrist started rebelling against typing. So either I've got to learn real quick how to type fast one handed, or I've got to take it slow. Phooey. I am planning on making those sour cream cookies sometime this week...the kitchen is just still a mess from when he left. I haven't gotten the urge to tidy it completely yet, mostly because I do feel so ill. I went shopping for food yesterday only to discover my stomach will not settle with most foods I eat. I'm on the cracker diet at the moment, not willingly.
Sunday, June 8, 2008
I made an earlier post about cloudy days, it is true, they mess with me like crazy. I love sunshine in the morning, it starts my day off wonderfully.
Going to try to get a nap in, we're leaving at 3am to get him to the airport in time to make it through security.
Saturday, June 7, 2008
I've been handwriting my novel for the last couple of weeks, it gets more than staring at the computer screen done does, but I'm still ending up not making my goal. Now honestly, a lot of that has to do with me letting myself get distracted. So, all my instant messengers are signed off, and once I'm done doing my normal first thing online stuff I'll be writing. Hopefully I'll get a head today a little, to start catching up. Monday I'm bringing my hubby to the airport, which is about an hour away and hes got a 5:45am flight....ick.
Friday, June 6, 2008
1 roll big flaky biscuits, the one with 5 in it I think
A normal sized muffin tin
Cinnamon and sugar
Fruit pie filling of your choice, blueberry, peach, strawberry, w/e you want
Little bit of flour and butter to make the crumble top
Cool whip (or canned whip cream, I can't do dairy very well so non dairy cool whip for me)
Separate each of the biscuits into two, flatten them each out into about 4 inch circles. Dip one side in the cinnamon sugar, then stuff them cinnamon sugar side down into the muffin tin. Fill with desired filling. Smush together the flour and butter, and some cinnamon sugar until its crumbly. Sprinkle on top of each of the mini muffins. Bake in the oven at around 375 degrees for about 15 minutes. Pull them out, drop a dollop of cool whip on the one you're going to eat, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and enjoy! Oh, to get them out of the pan I let them cool a minute then used a fork, I plan to try them using paper muffin cups but haven't yet.
Its very yummy and sweet. I only eat one at a time, too sweet for me to have more than one, too much sugar makes me go to sleep. :D
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Cloudy mornings also make my to-do list look insanely long. Now don't get me wrong, I love cloudy days in the afternoons, it generally keeps it cooler this time of year. But in the mornings, when its already cooler, it sucks.
Short post for me this morning. I might post more later, but I've got some catch up writing to do.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
A box of Aunt Jemima's pancake mix, original, the just add water one.
You'll use 2 cups of the above mix
1 1/2 cups water
1/3 cups oil (I use veggie oil, olive oil would be too heavy I think)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 and 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon, I think
You can add various things to the batter, blueberries, strawberry chunks, whatever you want really. With this amount of batter, no more than a cup I would say. But thats me. :D
A waffle iron, a mixing bowl, a spoon, a ladle, cooling racks, a fork.
Various toppings. I top mine with cool whip and normally fresh strawberries, my husband likes butter and Mrs. Butterworth syrup. If i want syrup, I go for the good stuff thats like 5 bucks a bottle. Thankfully I don't go for it much. This morning my husband used his syrup and peanut butter, that was on pancakes made with this mix straight up. So yeah, use whatever you want for toppings.
Follow the instructions on the back on the box, the waffle instructions are on the bottom left corner above the chart for different amounts of pancakes. Add in the brown sugar and cinnamon once you've got the water and oil mixed together. Now, this is important. Do not set your waffle iron to heat before you make this. Right now, walk away from the batter. Get the waffle iron out of the cupboard and set up. Spray it lightly with Pam and plug it in to start heating up. Stay away from the batter.
After about 5 minutes or more, the waffle iron should be heated, and your batter should be full of air pockets. This is what you want. Ladle a good amount of the batter onto the iron, you want the batter to be almost reaching the edge on its own while its still seeping around the iron. Close the lid and back away. I want to say walk away, which you can, just don't forgot about it. I'm not sure how long it will take to cook, it depends on the waffle iron. Tried and true method, don't open the lid until after it starts steaming and stops. So. You close the lid. No steam. It starts to steam. It stops steaming. It is safe to check the waffle. I use a fork to pop the waffle out of the iron and onto a cooling rack. No I don't let it cool, its just that if you put it right onto a plate, the bottom gets soggy from the steam. So let it sit on the rack for a minute before serving.
Thats it really. You can also make like a double batch and freeze some if you want. I haven't tried that because I'd want to eat them all.
I usually make these on Sunday, around noon when my husband and I finally wake up. hehe. I'll take a photo and post it. I didn't make them this past Sunday, we had friends over Saturday night and my husband was only able to get me out of bed by luring me out with cinnamon buns. :D
Monday, June 2, 2008
I've got a large crochet project, and a large for me cross stitch project I'm doing for my cousins wedding.
I know theres more but that is all I can think of at the moment.
My main focus is my novel. Thats my major project. Its called Ivory and is currently about 76,000 words long and about 1/3 complete. I've got a full outline and almost every chapter is at least started with a small blurb. I try to write at least 1,000 words every day. On a normal good day, I do it with no problem. How often do I have normal good days? every other week or so. I'll be going good for 3 days then hit a rock. I get thrown off course for a week, then get back on track. It is very annoying and frustrating but I have come to learn fighting it only makes it worse. I lose focus very easily, especially when I am feeling even the slightest bit ill. We're talking a minor headache and its all over. Plus I really cannot wait to go back and start editing it. I've been working on it for about seven months now. It is my first novel so it is taking longer than I wish it would. I'm hoping to be done with this first draft by August 1st.
By editing I mean printing out each and every page and attacking it with a red pen, highlighters and those flag post-its. I love post-its, they are just so expensive! I want to get those ones that are shapes, but I can't bear spending 5 bucks for sticky notes that I rarely do use. I've got two packs of the large flags so I'll be using those. I want to edit it so badly because I can see areas that need to be fixed, there are parts that need to be edited because I wrote scenes out of order so now some people are in scenes that shouldn't be there. I really think I'll edit those before printing it off, because I know where they are and there is no point in printing out pages I know have to be totally rewritten anyways.
Once I print it out, I will so take a picture to post on here. Its going to be a massive stack of paper.
I've got a short story that I really need to finish writing, I just...never get to it. I'm horrible at forcing myself to do things, even when I like doing then and or know its good for me. Same is true for my cross stitch project for my cousin's wedding. Its going to be a cute wedding thing for them. I have it all planned out and the thread sorted. I have started it. I've working on it that one time...at least the wedding isn't until Oct. I've got time. Really should only take me about 3 or 4 hours to do, I just know I probably cannot sit and work on it straight for that long. Eye strain and all.
As for crochet, I am trying to start a baby blanket. Hopefully for me and my husband. We aren't planning on trying for children for about 4 more years at least. But you never know. Plus, I know three people getting married this year so I figure having one started would be good to have on hand.
So whose getting married?
My cousin Daphne is marrying Ben on Oct. 24th.
My father is marrying is girlfriend of...2 years? on Aug. 8th.
My husbands friend and my friends, Joe and Linda on Aug. 27th.
Which of these weddings are we going to as a couple? None. Nice right?
I'm going to my cousins wedding as her maid of honor solo, theres no way he'll get the leave. Maybe a four day pass, but even if, the plane fare will be insane. My dads wedding, just learned about it and same problem, no leave and plane tickets. Joe and Linda's we simply don't know yet. They live close enough we can drive up. My husband might be able to get a pass. If so, we'll hopefully be going to theirs, even if just for the reception, (the church charges by the amt of people showing up. weird right?).
Oh and, who's engaged?
So far I think it is just my sister and James, they've been dating for 4 years and don't plan to get married until shes done college, another two years. My cousin Ian was engaged, but that one didn't work out. Oh! Debbie is at least seriously committed if not engaged yet. Shes been very out of contact lately, I don't blame her. :D That reminds me of a wicked yummy dessert recipe she gave me. I'll have to post that one.
Thats it for now I think, later gators!
Sunday, June 1, 2008
Note: This one can easily be halved, but since it takes a while to make and they freeze well, I just make the full recipe.
A good two hours! (Takes an hour roughly to bake the potatoes the first time, so not two hours chained to the kitchen.)
10 pounds russet potatoes
3 pounds bacon(yes, three pounds, you can cut it down if you want, I suggest trying it first then altering as you wish)
4 cups of diced onions
1 four cup package of finely shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1-8 ounce pack of cream cheese (the little box)
16 ounces of sour cream
One large cookie sheet or two smaller ones, a large mixing bowl, a fork, a soup spoon, wiring cooling racks, electric mixer, a fry pan, cutting board and knife, and I think that is it. Oh, a potato scrubber if you're big on getting the potatoes clean within an inch of its potato life, otherwise just use your hands to scrub them.
Turn the oven on to 425 degrees. Scrub all the potatoes, takes a bit and tends to tire you out, but just think, its a mini workout! Poke the potatoes with the fork a few times so they don't explode in the oven. Now I normally put the potatoes right on the oven rack but you can use a cookie sheet if you want. Bake the potatoes for an hour.
While they are baking, dice up the onions and put them aside. Heat up the fry pain to cook the bacon. Best idea we've ever come up with, slice up the bacon into chunks before frying it. Saves a lot of effort afterwards. Fry up the bacon, a pound at a time works best. Line a plate with paper towels to drain the bacon as you are down frying it. Drain the fat as needed to not create a boiling pile of fat. With the last batch reserve some of the grease to cook the onions. To make it healthier you can drain all the fat and use olive oil or some other healthier alternative. Cook the onions until they are tender. You cook try to do this while the potatoes are cooling but I find it easier to do right after I get the potatoes in the oven, then once I'm done with the onions I can just walk away from the kitchen till the potatoes are done.
Check the potatoes after the hour, I usually poke a butter knife into the biggest one, if it goes in smoothly, they are done. Transfer them from the oven to the cooling racks for about 20 minutes or so. Take the cream cheese out of the fridge at the same time so it will soften up a bit before its time to mix.
After the potatoes cool a bit, cut them in half lengthwise and scoop out the meat part, leaving the skin intact making a sort of potato shell I guess. Scoop the potato meat into the mixing bowl. Arrange the potato shells onto the cookie sheets, its best to try to cook them all at once. Add the cream cheese, sour cream and mix well. Try to get it creamy. If you need to, add some more sour cream, some butter or milk to make it creamy. Then mix in the onions, usually okay on low with the mixer, otherwise use a spoon. Then its time for the bacon and cheese. Easiest to do them one at a time. Once you've got the cheese mixed in its time for a taste test. Usually needs pepper and some salt, I go light on the salt because there is plenty from the bacon, my husband knows he'll have to add more when he eats one, but he doesn't mind.
Time to preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Once you've got it salt and peppered start scooping the mixture into the potato shells. Be generous! Stuff those potato skins! Don't mound them, just stuff them. You will likely have some mixture left over, that is normal, time to treat yourself, stick it in a small bowl, pop it in the microwave and enjoy!. The potatoes once stuffed get put in the oven for about 30 minutes, might take longer, you want the tops to start turning light brown. Then eat!
What to do with the rest of them? Unless you're feeding a heck of a lot of people, you'll have a bunch of potatoes left over. I freeze about half of whats left, glad ware comes in here. The other half I stick in zip bags and put in the fridge. Don't do that until they are cool though. Hot potatoes into the freezer...not so good. You can also freeze or refrigerate any leftover mixture that didn't make it into a potato. Reheating the potatoes, microwave is the quickest but it tends to make the potato skins tougher. I reheat them in the oven, at about 300 degrees for 15-20 minutes. You don't want to brown the tops anymore, just warm them all the way through.
Recipe is from my mom-in-law Doss, side notes are from me though.
Ignoring my slightly dirty stove, this is sort what one looks like. This one is out of the fridge since I made these last week. They are wicked yummy.
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Despite the name, they can be made at times other than Christmas. These sugar cookies are so thick and fluffy, you'll never want a flat crunchy one again. These cookies freeze well and this recipe is very easy to double, or even triple. :D
What you'll need:
1 cup butter (or margarine, or such)
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon baking soda and baking powder. You need one of each.
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups all-purpose flour or the like
colored sugar, sprinkles and red hots or any other similar things for decorating. (Optional but fun!)
Electric mixer (can do it by hand, just takes longer), a sifter or a fine mesh strainer, or a whisk in a pinch, a refrigerator(to chill the dough), a rolling pin, cookie cutters or a knife to cut shapes out, a couple cookie sheets for baking, wire racks for cooling, and zip bags or glad ware for storage. Plastic wrap, two mixing bowls and a wooden spoon.
Cream the butter and sugar. Then blend in the sour cream, eggs and the vanilla (sometimes I add an extra splash of vanilla). If you're lucky and have a stand mixer you can start sifting while its still mixing. Me, I haven't earned my KitchenAid yet so I'm the stand for the hand mixer. Once you're done blending, sift together the flour, and baking soda and powder (1 tsp of each!). Slowly add the dry mix into the bowl with the wet ingredients. Use the mixer as long as possible, but it will get too stiff for it and you will have to mix in the remaining dry mix my hand with a spoon or your fingers. Wrap up the dough in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for two hours.
Roll out the dough until it is about 1/3 of an inch thick. Cut out into desired shapes, decorate as you please with the sprinkles, colored sugar and red hots (we usually use them for the eyes and buttons on gingerbread shaped cookies).
Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 9 minutes. Watch them after 5! Leave on the cookie sheet for about a minute then transfer to the wire racks to cool. Make sure to let the cookie sheets cool in between batches otherwise the cookies could cook unevenly.
* Will add photos after I make them this weekend.
Friday, May 30, 2008
What you'll need:
1 pkg. strawberry jell-o (the normal size one)
1 bag frozen strawberries
1 (6 oz.) can of crushed pineapple
1-1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 cup boiling water
A mold, we usually use a large round one with the hole in the middle.
A medium bowl, whisk and a rubber spatula.
Pour the powdered jell-o into the bowl, add the boiling water and mix until dissolved. Add in the strawberries and the pineapple. Pour half the mixture into the mold, reserve the other half at room temperature. Chill the mold until the jell-o is set, remove it from the fridge, spread the sour cream over the surface of it then pour the remaining jell-o on top of that. Return to the fridge and chill until set. Flip it out onto a pretty serving dish to serve, leave it in the fridge until ready to eat though. Its best nice and chilly.
Will add photo after I make it this weekend. :D
**NOTE: I made it, came out yummy, I had to use my phone to take the picture since I couldn't find my camera...and now I can't find my cable that connects my phone to my computer...so once I figure out how to get the picture off my phone onto my computer, I'll post it.