Thursday, August 31, 2006

Thirteen Hours

I have thirteen hours until the children leave and thought I would pass the time by thinking of all the things having them here has taught me.

  • I do not, in any way, shape or form, want another baby.
  • I don't think I was cut out to be a mom to little ones.
  • That sex leads to poopy, bad smelling, whining, needy, demanding creatures who take over your whole life.
  • How good a clean baby smells.
  • How close we are as a family
  • That sometimes you have to do the right thing even if it hurts.
  • Sharpened our negotiation skills.
  • That six year olds always have one more thing to say.
  • How funny little ones can really be.
  • That a two year old can ask you what you are doing fifty trillion times... even if they can see what you are doing.
  • That women who can have successful writing careers while wiping noses and making snacks are to be held in awe.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Odd, Unusual and cool on I84

Had to make an emergency trip up through the Columbia River Gorge yesterday. Came back this morning. Everyone(meaning my parents) is fine, but they needed me, so fisher boy and I made a wild road trip. This is what we saw: (Remember, part of the Gorge is pines and cliffs and the other part is sagebrush and hills, like nothing there for miles, which made our sightings even odder)

  • Six airplane wings flying up the freeway on the backs of semi trucks.
  • Seven half houses. So does that mean someone is getting a half a house? Or a house and a half?
  • A cafe called Spookies. Hmmm.
  • Fifty gazillion watermelon stands.
  • Fifty gazillion smashed watermelons on the side of the road.
  • Two midgets holding hands at a rest stop. Had much fun trying to figure out which vehicle was theirs.
  • A guy with a horse trailer almost crash in front of us when an extra strong gust of wind hit us.

Interesting trip.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Four days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

September first. They are leaving September first. Need I say more?

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Ch Ch Ch Changes?

The changes are coming. I can almost smell them. No, wee one hasn't filled her diaper. Life changes.

Change number one?

Children's services is now eager to get the kids back to their mother. Is this motivation caused by a reluctance to pay childcare? Who knows. But as soon as Mom gets a place the caseworker said she would advocate the kids going back with their Mom. Well, Mom called me today and said she is 90 percent sure she has a place. Have crossed my fingers, legs, toes and eyes. Would appreciate everyone in cyber space doing the same.

Change Number two:

My own lovely ice princess has tired of her ice obsessed life and is going to high school. She has never been to school nor even on the big yellow school bus, but she has decided she wants it. The whole thing. Dance Squad, report cards, track team. Have reservations, but am going to allow her to do so. She can go as long as I don't see any big changes in her behavior and she knows it. I actually think it will be good for her. She doesn't know who she is aside from skating and I think her renewed interest in youth group and school will help her find her direction.

Change number three:

My son will be (knock wood) starting college this year. I can already see the changes in him from his trips this year and am excited for this new chapter of his life.

What this means for me?

More money for one thing. We have been spending thousands of dollars a year on the ice princess. THOUSANDS. I can get a new car. Get my own cell phone. Pay off our bills.

More time. I won't be spending hours and hours a day on the road. Ice princess will take the bus to school. My boy will be driving soon. I will be able to write more. Do some of the things I have been wanting to do. Kick up my writing career a notch or two.

But for right now, I will wait. Make it through each day. Know that this too shall pass.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006


I got five days of child care! I got five days of child care! I didn't mean to play hard ball with them. I told them I couldn't take the kids after the first of September and I got an offer of five days. Funny how that work. They seem to think that Mom is going to get them back fairly soon so I think that is one of the reasons they caved. I just couldn't let my writing career go in the toilet. I worked to hard for it. Plus... I am hella tired. So tomorrow or the next day I will be able to take the munchkins to daycare for the day. Good thing because I started taking assignments again for next month.

My son got back from North Dakota the other day and he had the experience of his life. We only had a few hours to talk after he arrived home(he had a camping trip planned) and he was so excited about his time there. What really struck me was how close his squad had become in such a short period of time. He told me that the parting at the airport was incredibly emotional. I checked out some of their MySpaces and am seeing things like "I left pieces of myself in ND and traded it for memories" "North Dakota changed me forever" "Bravo Company 1-1-1 is my new family" and things like that. These kids are in constant contact with each other and planning a reunion. He made friends from all over the US; Alabama, New York, Texas and Maine. I am so happy for him. Daughter had a blast at camp. She has never been away for that long before and even though she missed us, she was glad to get away and do teen things like tubing behind a jet boat, white water rafting, swimming and hiking. The son joined her there and proceeded to get really sick. I think the airplane ride did him in. So in spite of the wee ones coming to live with us, I think the kids had a decent summer.

No news on the writing front. Finished a couple of articles. Have one more to do before I get started on next months. Didn't get any fiction done though.

Saturday, August 19, 2006


So much legal mumbo jumbo going on with the kids, I can't even explain it all. Suffice it to say that they are now backpedaling on their offer to give the girls daycare. The conversation went like this:

Caseworker: "I'm not sure about five days a week daycare. We really want the children to be in your home most of the time."

Me: "Are you telling me that you don't certify duel income households, where both people work outside the home?"

Long pause

Caseworker: "Well, yeah, we do. And we often pay childcare for them."

Me: "Then can you tell me what the difference is?"

Another very long, heavy pause.

Caseworker: "I guess there really isn't one."

Me, the light dawning on me. "Just because I work at home, doesn't mean I don't work!"

GAWD! They should see my monthly invoices. June: $2200 July: $1100 August: $550! I work on nonfiction and fiction a total of 35 to 40 hours a week. Or I did. Now I am down to maybe five total weekly hours. FIVE! Do they want to talk to my editors to prove I am a writer and make money? My tax preparer? Or maybe I should have my agent call them from New York?

Just wanted to let you know, fellow writers, that we aren't really working. What we do isn't really a job. It must follow that publishing isn't really a business.

Just to let you all know.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

This and That

What to say, what to say?

Kids were gone yesterday. I got started on a couple of the articles I have due this month. If anyone's child contracted roundworms from somewhere or if you take measures to prevent that, I would love to hear from you. Having trouble finding anecdotal sources for that one. Didn't look at any fiction. Took a nap instead.

The boy is in North Dakota this week. I missed his call this morning at 5:30 am. Just couldn't wake myself up enough to run for the phone. The Lewis and Clark Rondezvous sounds amazing. He gets to watch a show called the Medora Musical while eating a big pitchfork fondue banquet. Gets to ride in covered wagons to eat a meal in the Dakota Badlands, float the Missouri River on the Lewis and Clark Riverboat, do a high ropes adventure course, tour Custer's last home, visit Fort Mandan, watch Calvery reenacters and all sorts of amazing things. They chose ten students from every state for an all expenses paid trip, so he will be amongst 500 other students from around the country. He comes in Friday. I miss him horribly. If he wasn't five inches taller than I am, I'd call him mini me. We are pretty tight and he often finishes my sentences for me.

I have read so many books this summer. Funny how that happens. When I'm stressed, I read more. Haven't picked up Diana P.'s book, Secret Society Girl, yet. That's next on my list. I have some more YA to catch up on, as well.

Hark! I hear a baby. She's playing my song again.

Monday, August 14, 2006

On the Home Front

Had the entire weekend to myself. Well, almost. They came and got the kids on Saturday about 2 pm and from then on out it was just me and my kids. My husband had a wedding to attend so the kids and I went to our favorite Chinese food and talked about the situation. The mom went to court on Friday and turns out they want her to do more work. The caseworker called and begged us to keep them for 45 more days. Sigh. We were counting down till September first. This would put it at the end of September. Basically, the boy would be starting first grade and then moving to another school in about two and a half weeks which doesn't make sense to me if they are going to just give them back to mom anyway. There is a family meeting on Wednesday that I want to attend so I can make that point known to them. At any rate, the caseworker asked if we would take them if the state provided childcare for the two girls as well as the boy, (until he starts school) And promised that they would be able to go to Grandpa's place every weekend.

I had mixed results from my kids. My son was okay with it. He figured that if they are gone almost everyday and over the weekends so we can kind of get back to our own lives, he would be able to do it. My daughter was adamantly opposed. She wants them out of the house, like, yesterday.

Then the kids and I went to the book store where we bought a few study books for my daughter and Reality Chick for me. My daughter spent Saturday night with a friend and was taking off for the beach with friends on Sunday and my son took off for North Dakota for a week 4am Sunday morning so it was just me and my dh and the book. Was fabulous. Read it in one sitting. I should have been writing in HOT, but couldn't put the book down. Rounded out the day by running errands with my husband and relaxing.

My daughter takes off on Thursday for camp. Then the boy gets in and we have to bring him home, dust him off, repack and drive him to camp with his friends. But... they are taking the kids again this next weekend so I will have another whole weekend to myself. I promise to write that weekend.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Writing This Time... Promise!

Actually that's a lie. More on reading, which as at least writing related!

The book I picked up was Once Upon Stilettos. Wonderful, fab, can't say enough. I love the concept of these books. Very different and highly entertaining. Her characters are wonderful.

I won a contest and got my prize in the mail a few days ago. Flirting With Forty, by Jane Porter. If you haven't read this book yet, grab it. I lurved it! It really resonated with me, having turned forty last year. It was romantic and introspective and had a lot of very true things to say on being forty, sex and motherhood, as well as dreaming and wanting more. Knowing the inside story added to the charm of the book. Suffice it to say, the author met and fell in love with a surf instructor, much as the heroine in the book did. Her descriptions are wonderful and I wish I could write more like she does. Can you tell I loved this book? I stayed up till one am last night to finish it and, as you know, I really need my sleep. Was so worth it though, except now it's done. Sob.

Okay, Have to get the children in bed. Blessed Bed. So I can write!!!

Oh, my CP loved my first chapter of HOT. YAY. Maybe I can write an adult contemporary!

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

The pleasures of a good nap

Took a nap today and got a great idea. More proof that sleep tickles the muse. There I was, dreaming about working at starbucks (Even more proof I drink too much coffee,) and a phrase slipped into my brain. I want to have more children.

Now that isn't me, HA! So it had to be a character. A woman. A woman who thinks she wants more children, but what she really wants is a life. So there it is. The kernal that will make the book. Fun stuff. Delightful stuff. The stuff a writer's life is made of. Besides waiting, that it.

Speaking of waiting, I had some good news for OTE. It was requested by another editor. Very excited, but trying not to be. I thought the sucker was almost dead, but apparently, not quite. If that sells as a two book series deal and then LIPS sells with another publisher, that would make me a multi contracted author!

Ahem. Get a grip, Teri.

Spent the day without children, hence the nap. Worked a bit on chapter two of HOT. Spent the rest of the afternoon at a college with my boy taking tests etc. He is trying to get into a program where he can get his highschool diploma and his AA at the same time. Then he can just transfer to a four year college for his last two years. And viola! We get two years of college for free. Keep your fingers crossed. He has two more days of evaluation and then a private interview. We will know by September 11th. You know, just the day Spetember 11th jars me. We will be talking about something and the date comes up, like "You'll get it on September 11th," or, "We're leaving on September eleventh," And my heart stands still. I wonder if that happens to people who lived during Pearl Harbor. Does December 7th still resonate with them?

Will have to remember to ask my Mom.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

A tough Choice

Went to the bookstore yesterday. Wanted to get Shanna Swendson's latest, Once Upon Stilletos. Found it and Lauren Barnholdt's Reality Chick. And my son wanted the latest Artemis Fowl. Went up to the counter. $35.00. WTF? There were no hardbacks here. They were all paperbacks. GAH! Couldn't afford that. I had 30.00 cash. I looked at the books in my hands. I was committed to Artemis Fowl. Reality Chick? Once Upon Stillettos? Even the wise women of the ages wouldn't be able to figure that one out! When I finally put one down and paid for the others, I felt a deep sense of loss. This wasn't the road less chosen, it was the book not chosen and in my mind, a book is far more important than a road.

Oh, and I will never take the little ones to the book store again. Not a satisfying trip AT ALL!

Question... which one did I choose? Eh?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Lovely, lovely

Yesterday, the kids went on an all day visit with their mom and grandpa. I took my own kids to the lake. The ice princess met her boyfriend out there , (he lives next to the lake,) my son fished and I lounged on a blanket and read a book I had picked up at the little store on the Lake. It was Fantastic. Mimosa Grove, it was called. Can't remember the author's name, but lurved the book. I rested, I relaxed, I fought off killer bees. Yes, killer bees. The minute I opened my Coke, they swarmed me. I finally covered the can and took it down the beach from me. The bees didn't bother me again.

Was lovely. The idea was for me to write, but the day was just perfect, about 80 degrees, with a slight breeze and the quiet was too seductive to even want to work. The scent was intoxicating, warm pine needles mixed with fresh water. Mmmm. A fine time was had by all. My son caught several fish, my daughter held hands with her boyfriend and got to know him better and I lazed in the sun like I used to. After we left, I took my kids to the rink where they were meeting their youth group after the Ice Princess taught a couple of classes. I didn't have to go out again. I took a nap, which would have been delectable, except I got six phone calls in two hours. Oh well, it was almost better that way because there was a smile on my face everytime I hung up the phone and realized I could go back to sleep again. I may not have recieved as much rest as I would have from a solid nap, but I enjoyed it more.

And the best part? They go on another visit today! But no rest today, I have to work on the few articles I have for the month of August and work on my fiction. Sounds like fun to me!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006


I actually wrote soem fiction yesterday! Mostly it consisted of opening HOT and changing a few things and starting the end of the first chapter, but I actually did it! It felt good and I didn't want to come back from that world, but I had to. Too much going on here.

I want to go deeper into the characters, learn about them in a more meaningful way. That's the only way I will be able to do them justice. I am excited about writing again. Want to do it so badly.

That's a very, very good thing!