Monday, August 14, 2017

One Year Later

I'm a little bit late, but on July 9th one year ago, our pastor pronounced us husband and wife. 

I can't believe it's been a year already. In some ways it feels like it's only been a couple months, and in others it seems like ten years.

So much has happened and changed. I think the obvious one being that we now have Henry. I'm just in awe when I look at him, and I find myself wondering why we were ever scared to begin with. He's one of God's biggest blessings on my life and I wouldn't change anything. 

Jarod amazes me every day with his drive to work hard, sometimes later than I'd like, but it's for us. He does it so we can grow and build in the future. As much as I loved him before, I love him so much more now. I literally don't know what I'd do without him. He completes me in every way. 

I know I'm not even half the wife he deserves, but I pray God would mold me into a Proverbs 31 kind of gal. 

Right now we rent a little house that's sufficient for the three of us. There's a possibility of moving in the next year or so, but we'll just have to pray on it. I'm so thankful that Jarod made it possible for me to stay home with Henry and manage the household portion of our lives. It's a simple start, but we both have dreams. Very different from each other, but capable of folding together like two separate hands. Nothing thrills me like sitting out on our deck together with Henry curled up in my lap, talking about all the things we want to do someday. Jarod listens to me and I listen to him and it all just seems so possible on those cool summer nights. Who knows if they'll come true or not, but we can dream. Maybe God will see fit to allow it. 

To celebrate the day we went to church in the morning, and age at the potluck (because you do not cook on your anniversary). My parents took Henry for the day and Jarod took about a three hour nap when we got home-romantic, right? Then we went and got ice cream and went for a drive. Like they do in books, and country music, just driving with no destination. Talking and playing old country on the ipod. It was wonderful. I got him some stuff for his peterbilt that he'd been wanting, and he got me a gun. I must say, the poor guy got the short end of the stick, in my opinion.

In the evening we went to Sportsman's, a little food and bait joint by the lake that serves AMAZING chicken. 
We did get out our wedding cake, but it was disgusting so I just nibbled on the frosting. Because frosting is eternal. 

Now we're a month in to our second year and we can laugh about the times I made a complete idiot of myself trying to get his attention, and how he shamelessly ignored me anyway. Now we're ready to press on into this new set of days and see where the road takes us.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Beautiful People- August

Its that time again people! And since I've actually been writing a story, I will answer the questions for my character.
It's gonna be Zaig, from Red as Blood.

What are they addicted to/Can't live without?
Zaig is a very conservative person. He doesn't allow himself to get too wrapped up in anything. That being said, he does have a rather unhealthy fixation on weapons, and he absolutely cannot live without one with him at all times.
Name 3 positive and 3 negative qualities about your character.
He's got a kind heart, if you can get past his thick skin.
He's loyal to his friends.
He's got a sense off humor, I think.
He's a petty thief on occasion.
He's bitter.
Does being an assassin count as a negative quality?
Are they holding onto something they should get rid of?
Yeah. The past.
If 10 is completely organized and 1 is completely messy, where to they fall on the scale?
Oh, I'd say he's about a nine. He's pretty darn meticulous. Everything has to be in its place. He doesn't like a mess, otherwise the Widow will be picking around his room tidying up, and we can't have that. She might find *things*
What most frustrates them about the world they live in?
That victims get overlooked, and the guilty go free.
How would they dress for a night out? How would they dress for  night in?
Big difference there, I know. Zaig's just kinda pain like that.
How many shoes do they own and what kind?
Do they have any pets? What pet do they WISH they had?
No, he does not. But I think he'd like to have a horse of his own.
Is there something or someone that they resent? Why and what happened?
His stepdad. Because he was a nasty, abusive drunk.'
What's usually in their fridge or pantry?
He doesn't have a fridge, and he doesn't own the panty, but the widow keeps him well stocked in baked goods and delicious treats.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Nothing Gold Can Stay

I do believe I've fallen in love. Not with Jarod.
 I mean I do love Jarod, but I've been in love with him, so there's no need to announce I've fallen in love with him. 
No, I'm meaning in a fictional sort of way. 

Have any of you ever read The Outsiders? 

I hadn't. Seriously. 
Then one day I got a wild hair to watch it, because I've owned the movie the better part of my life and never once watched it. 
But Jarod said I can't watch it till I read the book. 
Which is the best thing he's ever done in the last 48 hours. 
So, because I wanted to watch the movie I scurried to the library and tracked it down. 
For some reason I was surprised by how little it was. 
So, I finished it in less than eight hours. Starting at eight in the morning, whenever Henry ate or napped, I read. Finished it at four. 
And I didn't cry. But I wanted to.

That is a glorious book. I've never been a fan of younger narrators, but Ponyboy was perfect. Perfect! 

I was one chapter into the book when I told Jarod that I felt like it was one of those where you love everyone and there's a nice atomic bomb in the last chapter that kills everyone. 
And he AGREED with me. 
I scolded him thoroughly and told him to never agree in a situation like that. Leave me alone to hope I'm wrong. Postpone the agony. 

In a sense, I was wrong. No bombs went off and not everyone died.

I fell in love with all the characters. But mostly Dallas (Dally) Winston. 

It certainly helped when I was able to see his face in the movie, but the movie fell flat for me. 
(Only problem being the knowledge that these guys are like my dad's age now...)
The characters lacked the soul they had on the page. Timing was too rushed, they just recited their lines, sort of thing. 
But in the book....perfection. Pure gold. They were so real. 
And of course I had to fall for the baddest boy of the bunch. 
It's not at all unusual. 
I've come to expect it by now, as well as the results of loving the most dangerous one. Tragic.
(If you knew what happens to all the characters I loved you would understand why I keep such a close watch on Jarod. Joking, joking) 

Then I read up a little on S.E. Hinton. I don't know why, but whenever I see initials like that I automatically assume man. So I was surprised to find out she is in fact a woman. 

But you know what blew my brain?
She was SIXTEEN when she wrote the book. What?!?!
I was absolutely floored that a sixteen year old could create something so deep, and meaningful, and lasting. That book was published ages ago! 
When I look at the crap I wrote when I was sixteen I want to ceremoniously burn it. I don't, because I keep telling myself a rewrite and some editing can work magic, but....

I have been inspired though. To get out my Out of Darkness story. The one about Cannon. It's similar to The Outsiders just in the fact that it deals with boys on the streets. And Jarod fueled the fire by suggesting I uproot the setting from Detroit and move it to Tucson. He spent a good chunk of his life there, and he knows quite a bit about the gangs, police, location, etc. He's very kindly volunteered myself as my research partner. 

Have you read the book? If not, get thee hence and acquire a copy immediately. 
If yes, read it again, for old time sake. 
And stay gold

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Footnotes- A Link-up

I just love these sorts of things. I used to do lots and it seems like most of the old ones have kind of gone by the wayside. But here's a new one and I'm super stoked to join. 

The topic for the month: 
A quote from an author.

And they had to start off hard. 
How is someone who reads like it's an addiction supposed to choose one quote to chat about? 
How do you look at the entire universe and choose one star?

Several quotes popped into my mind when I read the prompt. 

I like his quotes, OK? No, I've never read any of his books. 

But fantastic as those are, those aren't my favorite. 
I've never met a C.S. Lewis quote I didn't like, but his are so long and theological I couldn't even begin to remember which is my favorite. 

Louis L'amour has a whole treasure trove of quotable gems but that's not what I wanted either.

And let's not forget

Quite frankly, I came very near to using this as my quote and calling it good. I relate to it on a spiritual level. 

Then I decided. 
THIS is my favorite quote. 

Because it is absolutely true. (And doesn't he look like he would so just that?) It does no good to sit around and wait for the urge to do anything. Read, write, create, clean the house....because it won't just spontaneously appear. Especially not the house cleaning bit. You've got to make it happen. Forxe yourself to sit down and write those next few words, even if they're complete rubbish. You can change them later. Just write. 
I'll never have time to read my Bible unless I make it. 
I'll never decide how I want to refurbish the dresser until I get out a paintbrush and start. 
If I spent half as much doing things as I do looking at Pinterest for ideas I'd have built a new house entirely by now. 
And I'll certainly never wash my dishes until I lock both feet into place and plunge my hands into the water. 

Go on.
Grab a club. 

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

A Retelling

Hello all!
You might remember several years back I participated in Rooglewood Press' fairy tale retelling. The one I did was Beauty and the Beast, and then I didn't do it for a few years.
This year though, is their last year for the contest, so I decided to take part.
The story is Snow White.

Quite frankly, I wasn't thrilled. Snow White is about my least favorite fairy tale as far as Disney Princess movies are concerned.

But I was determined to at least try for this contest so I set about reading wiki pages on all the variations of Snow White, and let me tell ya they ranged from creepy to just flat out weird.

And still no story idea occurred. So I went to Pinterest for inspiration and searched things like Snow White retelling, futuristic snow white ...anything that turned up results besides this

So, finally I decided I was gonna do a futuristic snow white. Not a dystopia, but a futuristic, like gadgets and technology on steroids. 
But, I can't read that style of stuff, nor can I write it, so I never fell in love with or started work on it. 
Maybe I might try to go back to it later. 

So I consulted Pinterest again. And you know those tumblr posts that someone says "someone write that story"? I found one of those. And inspiration struck. I can't reveal which post it was because it has some terrible spoilers, but soon darling, soon. 

So I started this new story, and the wonderful Skye has been reading it, and I think I'm about half done with the first draft. 
I'm in love with it. 

There are several characters. 
The main one being Zaig. 

He's some kind of cross between these two pictures. Twenty five years old, with a ever developing back story, and currently serving as my huntsman character although I've posed him as an assassin. Funny thing is, I don't think he actually smokes. 

Next is my evil Queen character, Queen Minoa. 

She's regal, frightening, demanding. Just all around very queen-like. Her combination of terror instilling attitudes and incredible good looks has Zaig quite entranced. 

And of course the Snow White character. 

Her name is not Snow or White. 
It's Ailda. 
There was some sort of method to her name. Alba is white in Latin, so I originally started with that, and then about two pages in it morphed to Ailda, because it sounded more feminine, and that's how it happened. 
Ailda is sweet, vulnerable, innocent. What a good princess should be. She's rather successful at holding Zaig's attention as well. 

Besides these, of course I have seven dwarf characters, who aren't actually dwarves at all, they're loggers, and full sized. They're rather fun, as they came from different places so I can play with their accents and superstitions as we go along. 
Making Zaig an assassin has brought in a host of fun weapons to talk about, and thank goodness for a word count limit or I'd probably talk about them for pages. 
Darn it anyway. 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

What's Cooking

I could literally spend 24 hours cooking things in my kitchen and it still wouldn't be enough.
I absolutely love it. Every time I get to use my mint blue kitchen aid I turn into a giddy little kid.
I love trying new recipes. Especially for kind of odd ball things you wouldn't normally make yourself.
And this year, let me tell ya, I have been cooking.
My dad and both sisters haven't eaten any sugar so far this year. None. I salute them, but can't commit. But I have taken to making them sugar free desserts for occasions like the church picnic, father's day, independence day. Days where they would normally snack. And really, everyone has loved them. Even us sugar drenched junkies over here.

I've also been canning like crazy. Rhubarb sauce, strawberry rhubarb jam, chokecherry jelly. (I'm clearly still eating sugar)

My wonderful hubby got me a food dehydrator for mothers day so I've been making deer jerky, beef jerky, banana and Apple chips. It also works really good for drying the basil and parsley from my garden.

I stole my mom's wheat grinder for a few days.
OK, I borrowed it.

So I've ground up a bunch of wheat and popcorn so I have it on hand when I want to bake. Fresh, warm wheat is a glorious thing my friends.

I've also rediscovered the joys of kombucha. Simple answer it's like fermented tea that's really good for you and as close as you can get to drinking a pop without drinking a pop. You can flavor it all sorts of ways. Coffee, raspberry, root beer. The list goes on.

(Died and gone to heaven) 

All I can say is thank goodness the vast majority of it is healthy for you, otherwise I'd be well on my way to being a Roly Poly Oly. 

Saturday, July 22, 2017

A Lesson I Learned


Hello everyone.
You know it really is pretty funny how God works.
My dad always used to say "man plans, and God laughs."
While I don't think he's up there snickering and countering our plans, I feel the principle is very true. Quite often our plans don't align with what God has in store. 
But a lot of times that's a very good thing. Some of my plans could leave me destitute, bitter, and in a jail cell pretty easily. 
All this to say that God shook up one of my plans. I set out last week to start reading my Bible. Again. It's just terrible that I have to work so hard at something that's so good for me. But anyway, I didn't decide to read it every day, or read a certain amount every day, because I knew if I started out with a bunch of rules right off the bat that I'd fall on my face. So, thus far I've read about every other day, and even that much has drastically improved my mental wellbeing. 
See, I started this venture to learn how to be a mom. How God wants me to be. So I thought I'd go through the Bible and read about all the mom's. They usually get overlooked by the preachers, but God thought enough of them to tell their story. I'd just finished reading in Genesis, and I'm super familiar with Moses' mother, so I skipped some of those early ones to be visited later and went to 1 Samuel to read about Hannah. And it was good. I came away from it with the idea that we need to do right by our children in the Lord's will, whether or not it's convenient or pleasurable for us. Now I'm not planning at all to drop Henry off with pastor once he's weaned and come visit him once a year, but that could apply to anything. My middle sister for instance is wanting to possibly take a missions trip to Columbia once she graduates. All that's going through my parents minds right now (and mine, I'll admit) is drug cartels and gang wars and all sorts of terrifying things. But if Columbia is Gods will for her my parents are going to have to accept that. Or it could be on a much smaller scale. God flat out says to discipline your children. That's not really a pleasant thing for a parent. 
But I'm certain that's not what God had for me that day. He sat back and said "yeah, chapter one was good Mom, now go on to chapter two. That's where we really need to be." 
So I read chapter two. It's Hannah's prayer to God after he gives her a son. It basically talks about how mighty God is; how he kills and makes alive, he sets men in the positions they're in, and that he takes care of his children. 
The verses that struck me were 1, 3, and 9. 
In the King James, that's: 
...My heart rejoiceth in the Lord, mine horn is exalted in the Lord: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 
Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogance come out of your mouth: for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him are actions weighed. 
He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail. 

There's a person I have to deal with fairly frequently that I honestly had a good deal of hate toward, for years. There's no avoiding this person, and I'm expected to treat them not just civilly, but warmly, and frankly, I was getting bitter by the second about it. This person has wronged me personally, and my family in so many ways and on so many occasions and I just couldn't find it in me to show Christian love toward this person. 
God knew that. He knew that when I prayed about this person it was in more of a bolt of lightning from the sky sort of way. Not that they would come to love and repentance in him. 
Hannah wrote these verses about her husbands other wife (wife in law?), because she picked on her relentlessly because Hannah had no children and she had several. That would be enough right there to make me fly into a rage. 
But here, Hannah doesn't run to this woman and say "look here, witch. I've got a son now too. Now what you gonna say, you ugly old toad?" 
She says she rejoiced in the Lord. She was happy with God and his salvation. And that he lifted her up above the woman who ridiculed her. It didn't come through any smack talk of her own. It came from her joyful contentment in him. 
She tells this woman to not brag and vaunt herself. That no matter how high and mighty you act up town, because of how much you have or what your last name is, God knows your actions and the motives behind them. 
God will take care of his children. He goes to bat for them, so we don't have to fret about it. The wicked will be dealt with. No one is going to get by on their own power. 

When I read those verses I just kinda sat back and said "ok God."
This is not to say that when that person does something, again, that it doesn't irk me. I still feel upset, it still hurts. But, so far anyway, I haven't been overcome with rage that festers and boils for days at a time. My anger hasn't caused me to sin anymore. 
And I've been praying for this person. Like truly praying. That if they don't know Jesus as their savior that they would come to. That if they do know him, that they would return to him and start living the way they should. That in either of those things that they would be convicted of their wrong doing and stop it. That the Lord would help me to be kind to them through it all .
Part of me feels like "and Lord, if all this could just happen tomorrow that would be great." But I'm sure God's smiling saying "I think we're going to learn patience next."