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Archive for July, 2013

Some of you have asked for it, so here it is. This is the dress I’m going to wear to the costume ball. It’s a regency style dress, which has the empire waist.

Incidentally, this is the FIRST public picture I’ve ever posted of myself. Unfortunately, it’s not a very good one, but I wanted you all to see the dress.

dress

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There’s really nothing to report today. After the awful travel experience I had Sun-Wed, I didn’t want to do anything but sleep. I wanted to write on Saturday, but my husband wanted to go on the lake on my son’s father-in-law’s boat. We got to spend time with my son, his wife, and his wife’s father. I tried to ski, but the rope handle broke and hurt my hand. 😦

I really hope I get some writing done next week. The week after that is the RNConvention, and there is going to be so much to do that I won’t have time to write. But, at least most of the time will be spent in classes that should help me as a writer. There’s a costume ball, movie night, bingo (with novel covers as the squares), and a welcome party on the first night. I’m not much of a party animal, so if things get wild, I’m going to my room. I’m there to learn AND to have fun, but some people have a wilder idea of fun than me. LOL. I HOPE I sell all my books at the book fair so I won’t have to have them shipped home.

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Most of you know what kind of ordeal I’ve been through this week with all the airport stuff. I hadn’t even thought about how I was eating, and I certainly didn’t get any exercise in. But as I got on the scale at home, I had a pleasant surprise. Here are the stats. πŸ™‚

Stats for this week:
Beginning weight: 193
Today’s weight: 167.5
This week’s loss: 1.5 lbs.
Total loss: 25.5 lbs.

On an unrelated note…my dress for the costume ball at RNConvention in Las Vegas is almost finished. I’m supposed to go by this evening and see how everything fits and get the hems figured out. I have no idea what kind of shoes I’m going to wear, so I hope the hem will be okay. For a little teaser, this is the material for the main part of the dress.

material

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I noticed I had three texts, but I was on the road coming back home from the airport, so I didn’t know the good news. I drove up and saw Chipper welcoming me home. Then I saw something else…tied back up to his run was…DUKE! I couldn’t believe it. My husband, son, and son’s fiancee all texted me, but I didn’t see them until I had already seen Duke. It turns out that my brother saw him down the road, but couldn’t get him into his truck. So he called my son and he went down there, but by that time, my husband had already seen him on the way to church and picked him up. What has probably happened is someone had him tied up and he got loose and started home. That’s the only explanation I have for why he has been gone so long. It’s lucky I had bought him a collar right before he disappeared so my husband had something to tie him up with. We are going to have to find a better way to restrain him. I wish we could afford a fence. 😦 The bad thing is that my brother actually puts up fencing as part of his business, but I STILL can’t afford it. Bleh.

After all the trouble I had on my trip, it was nice to come home to my precious dog. Btw, the trip back was happily uneventful.

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Sooooo…I’m still sitting here in my hotel room waiting on my bag to be delivered by the airline. They say it will be on the flight coming in at 12:00, but with all the delays the past two days, I’m not optimistic it will be here on time. I missed the whole day of the conference yesterday. I’ve already missed a half day today. If my bag doesn’t get here in time for me to take a shower, brush my teeth, and put on my makeup before 2:00, then I’ll miss the bus to the tour,which is going to be an all day thing, ending with a reception. I don’t know why they can’t come back here and have the reception like they usually do. If I don’t get on the bus and do the tour and reception, that means I’ll only be able to do the half day conference tomorrow. And my boss has wasted all that money on this conference. All because the airline 1) delayed EVERY flight I was on, even though they had to change my flights four times, and 2) Sending my bag to NY even though they changed my flight to go through Detroit. They ASSURED me when it was changed that my bag would be changed as well. That didn’t happen. And they offer, from what I saw online, to refund the fee I paid for checked baggage…in the form of a travel voucher. The thing is, I’ll probably NEVER use this airline again, so what good does a voucher do? They should refund my MONEY.

I couldn’t sleep last night (after staying up until after 1:00 waiting on my bag, which didn’t arrive) because I was so upset about this whole thing. I had gotten up at 3:30 yesterday morning, so I’m SO tired. I’m tempted, when my bag finally comes, just to take my shower and go back to bed. Forget about the tour and the reception. Just SLEEP. And then, hopefully, I can get a lot of good out of the speakers at the conference tomorrow. There are actually three speakers tomorrow. And maybe I can network with a couple of customers somewhere in between the speakers. There are at least three people I need to see.

I’m so sorry to vent like this. No one wants to hear all the whining. But, after all, it’s my blog. I can tell by how few comments I got on this subject yesterday that it’s not what people want to hear. But that’s okay. I’ll try to post something cool and interesting someday soon. LOL

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In all the times I’ve flown, I’ve never had the awful experiences I’ve had this time. I’m already going to miss the first day of the conference. This is a work trip. I could have honestly DRIVEN to Burlington, Vermont in the time it’s taken me on this trip. First, my flight from Chattanooga to Atlanta yesterday was delayed multiple times. Finally, it was delayed to the point I would miss my connection in Atlanta. They rescheduled for the next morning…Chattanooga to Atlanta to New York to Burlington. Then I got a call that the flight from Chattanooga had been delayed again after I had already gotten up at 3:30 am. Then, somehow, the part of my itenirary from Chattanooga to Atlanta got cancelled. I had to call and fix that. Then, after I got to Atlanta, I found my flight to NY had been delayed an hour…which would make me miss the flight to Burlington. So then they changed my flight to go to Detroit instead of NY, which was fine with me…except for two things. 1) I have to stay in this airport 3 extra hours and 2) this flight has also been delayed. If it’s delayed any more, I will NOT make my flight to Burlington. And I have a feeling that’s the last flight to Burlington. WHO has a conference in a place where there aren’t that many flights coming in? Why couldn’t they have left it in Chicago? I would have driven. I have no idea what I’ll do if I miss that flight. I don’t want to be stuck in Detroit. *sobs*

Honestly, I’m about ready to find a flight back home. If my boss hadn’t already paid for the conference and the hotel, I just might. I honestly don’t know what to do but pray the flight from Atlanta isn’t delayed.

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A friend and I went yesterday to a place called Bread Beckers in Woodstock, GA. We have another friend who mills her own grain, and we were interested in doing that if the benefits seemed to be worth it. We both came to the conclusion that it was, so we both purchased a grain mill and some grain. I got hard white wheat, soft white wheat, and hard red wheat. Her main purpose is to help with some health issues her son has. My main purpose is to help regulate my blood sugar, as well as for overall colon health.

Why mill yourself instead of just buying whole grain flour? Well, this is how it was explained to me. You should only mill what you are going to use RIGHT THEN. The hull on the outside protects all the vitamins within. When the grain is milled, oxidation begins and the vitamins start disappearing. The sooner you use the flour, the more vitamins you get to keep. You can mill extra and store it, but you will lose a lot of the vitamins, although you will still have the protein and the fiber. It took me about 30 seconds to mill what I used last night. Because, even though it was late, I just had to try my first batch of bread. I was skeptical of the taste, although I was willing to tolerate it if it had the health benefits claimed. It tasted amazing! I had a slice last night, and for breakfast this morning, I had some with homemade paneer cheese fried in butter. The bread was a nice brown color, partly from the red wheat and partly from the honey. As a diabetic, I was a little uneasy about using honey, but I realized that there was just a little bit of honey, and the whole grain probably balanced out everything. Some people make the mistake of thinking diabetics aren’t supposed to eat carbs. We are supposed to eat GOOD carbs, such as whole grains and beans. Not so much white bread.

Okay, what does this mean about eating out and eating bread or hamburger buns that aren’t whole grains? I believe in moderation, not obsession. So, yeah, I’m going to eat bread at O’Charley’s or burgers at Steak N Shake. But not ALL THE TIME. I’m not going nuts about this, just like I didn’t go nuts about only using homemade beauty products. I do what I can, but I don’t go crazy with it. I plan on making lots of bread with this new milled grain. There’s really no reason to buy bread in the store anymore, so I know I’ll always have healthy bread at home. This means not only will I be eating healthier, I’ll be SAVING MONEY. I don’t know if my husband will be on board with this or not, since he was already gone to work when I got home last night. We’ll see. πŸ™‚

Incidentally, this store is a cook’s dream. All kinds of kitchen gadgets, large and small. And they have all kinds of grains, not just wheat. They have beans, brown rice, spelt, corn…just about everything. I wish I could have afforded a bread maker. I have one, but it doesn’t make a large 2 lb. loaf. My friend ended up spending LOTS of money there. I was a little more conservative since I’m broke. LOL

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I’ve never been to a costume ball before. But it’s going to be a lot of fun seeing what everyone comes up with to wear. Jimmy Thomas is getting professionals to decorate for it, so it’s going to look awesome. Only the best for our Jimmy. πŸ™‚

Anyway, my friend’s mother and I went to look for material for my dress last night. We looked and looked, and I was beginning to think I wasn’t going to find what I really wanted and would have to settle. Not so! There it was. The perfect material. I’m so excited that we found it. And I’m so happy that I actually know someone who can make a dress like this for me. We never could find the lace we needed to match, but I’m going to look at some different places. I just hope we don’t get down to the wire on this. The ball is only 3 weeks away! But I have confidence that my dressmaker is going to get it done and it will be perfect. I will NOT stress over this. πŸ™‚

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My books are shipping out today for the book fair at the RNConvention in Las Vegas. I’m a little freaked out because I realized I didn’t have enough copies. So I ordered more from CreateSpace. I hope they get here in time for me to ship those out, too, before the deadline. I also shipped out a raffle basket for the convention. 😦 I will be really embarrassed if no one puts their raffle tickets in for my basket. Here is a picture of what I sent. I decided to get a mini trunk rather than an actual basket.

raffle

And here it is closed.

raffle2

My trunk has five of my print books, a $25 Amazon gift card, and a necklace and earring set like the one in my book Soul of a Vampire. So, if you were at a convention and saw this, would you put one of your raffle tickets in for this prize? There are raffle tickets in everyone’s convention bag, so everyone will have several tickets that they don’t have to buy. I hope I picked items people would want.

I’m having my costume made for the costume ball, so I hope that turns out well. I’m going with my late best friend’s mother (who is making the dress) tonight to get material and whatever else we need. I wanted something a little more elaborate, but then I would have had to bring an extra suitcase. LOL.

Now, what to wear for the party on the first night and for the RONE awards. Sigh.

One of the things I’m most nervous about is…what if I don’t sell my books? What if I sit there at the book fair, and no one buys them? 1) I will have to pay to have them shipped home. I’ve already had to pay to ship them there. 2) I will have spent a lot of money that I can’t afford on buying my books. If I don’t sell all of them, I might have to have a big sale on my website when I get back. LOL

What happens this year will determine if I go back next year. If it is profitable (book sales, new readers, learning a lot in the classes), I will. But if not, I’m not paying that much to go next year. I know it’s an investment and you have to spend money to make money. I have to be practical, though. I think I’ll be able to tell if it’s worth it or not. We shall see.

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It’s unusual for me to miss the Sunday check in, but I just didn’t really get on my computer yesterday. I can tell that by all the emails I had waiting in my inbox today. I was just kind of unplugged yesterday. Not my normal day.

I really didn’t get much done last week. Fewer than 1,000 words. I finally figured out what my problem is, I just don’t know what to do about it. I can’t FOCUS. Every time I sit down to write, all these things are going through my head. Stuff I need to be doing. Like Saturday, all I could think of was that I needed to go to the pharmacy and get the needles for my insulin pens. And sometimes I’m thinking about the housework that needs doing. Or something. If any of you have any good ideas on how to stay focused on my WIP instead of my brain flitting around to everything else, PLEASE let me know. I used to be able to churn out a story in no time, my fingers flying over the keyboard almost every day. Of course, my plots are becoming more complicated, too. Anyway…HELP!

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