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Sunday, April 30, 2006

Injustice Righted

Bless the sweet Lord Jesus

I am crying I am so happy. You see, over the course of the past few years, in pursuing a career as a writer, I have been gravely concerned by the abuse of one of the most important and frequently misused pieces of English grammar. Yes, my friends, I am talking about the apostrophe.

I don't know what is so damn hard about people using this little gem correctly, however, it seems that many of my fellow writers fail to share the love.  As I was working on The Edits, I used an apostrophe, and I thought, "What if... what if *I* am the one who's wrong about the use of my beloved apostrophe?"  I decided to Google it.

For the record, I am right, and much of the writing universe is wrong.  I probably won't get to say that very often, so allow me to bask in that grammatical superiority for just a moment, if you will.

Moment over.

Not only are there some fantastic apostrophe resources out there, but there is, wait for it... The Apostrophe Protection Society.  Oh, I am in love.  If That Man would somehow find a way to harness the power of the apostrophe, he would *so* get lucky.  Sadly, he's probably reading this trying to figure out what the heck an apostrophe is.  Possibly some of you are.  Here it is-the magnificent apostrophe:  '  .

A few resources for those of you who may be, or just may fear that you are, confused about my beloved apostrophe. (The Apostrophe protection society also has a nice summary).
Rules and Examples
A very brilliant and funny site about apostrophes with links
If anything, you must check out this cartoon.  I thought about posting it, but I don't know all the proper rules for posting other people's stuff, so I didn't.  Take note, you apostrophe abusers-if you don't know the rules, don't do it!
Another funny but brilliant cartoon.

My friends-even if you are not a writer-learn these rules.  Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.  Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.  And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE use them in all of your writing-casual or formal.  You know I'm passionate when I start hitting Deuteronomy.  I think that the Lord would agree that even the apostrophe deserves to be loved.

And no, I am not procrastinating.  I was researching a legitimate concern about my writing, and my heart got so full of passion for the apostrophe that I simply couldn't write another word without addressing this horrific abuse in our society today.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Fighting it

I’ve spent the past couple of days dealing with a lovely intestinal ickage. Sadly, I think it’s from the spring rolls from my favorite restaurant, as I seem to remember having this same ickage last time I went there. I tried blaming it on something else, however, I suppose I’m going to have to concede this round. I’ll have to find another place that makes yummy spring rolls.

Last night, as I was finally admitting that my favorite food was making me sick, peering into that white porcelain bowl and finding undigested bits of what could only be spring roll, I had a thought about vomit. Go figure.

I’d been fighting the urge to throw up for at least the past 24 hours, but I kept telling myself, “I’m not sick. I’m not going to throw up.” I’d eat and then lay there, praying to keep it down, doing everything I could to ease my sensitive, queasy stomach. Funny thing, when I finally did throw up, I noticed that the contents of my stomach were not the most recent thing I’d eaten, but the meal I’d been fighting to keep down for the past 24 hours or so.

And then it occurred to me-the same thing that occurs to me every time I get sick like this. Why didn’t I just throw up when I needed to instead of spending 24 hours fighting the inevitable? If I’d just gotten sick when the urge hit, the nasty icky spring roll would have been out of my system and I’d have been on the mend. Instead, I’m just now hitting the upswing.

Which brought me to the next thought, after all, who else do you think about while puking your guts out, but God? As many times as I’ve done this-fighting the inevitable vomit, even though I need it to feel better, I continue fighting it. And I wonder, how much of my life is like vomit? The whole reason our bodies vomit is to get rid of toxins-things that make us sick, things that are not good for us. Yes, the whole process is messy and uncomfortable. But without it, like my ill chosen spring roll, all of the ick just sits in there, making us feel even worse.

So many times, we fight the growth and change that we need to make us better. Lately, and maybe it’s the nausea talking, as much as I have been growing and changing, there’s still so many things I fight. I wonder how much of what I’m fighting is like this stomach ick-I fight, but really, it’s the fighting that’s keeping me sick. If I’d just thrown up the other night when I first felt the urge, I wouldn’t feel so bad right now. I’d have gotten it out of my system, and over with.

Next on the agenda: exercise, work on the house, go back to some of the other disciplines I should be doing but dread. Vomit, all of it, but once I get it over with, I’ll feel much better.

Friday, April 28, 2006

dumb, dumb, dumb

Dear stupidhead,

Firefox is awesome and tabbed browsing is the awesomest. However, when you go on a bunny trail research hunt for the newest book that God tells you to write and decide to close some of the tabs, don’t close the one that has your latest unsaved blog entry.

Your friend,


So anyway, I had a really cool, awesome post about the Hill of Doom. And maybe tomorrow, you will learn how I conquered it. J Oh wait, I just ruined the ending. Ah well, you know with me, it has to be a happy ending, so I probably just ruined all the endings of all of my stories. Buy my books anyway.

Headache status-still here, however, my encounter with the Hill of Doom may have had a positive impact.

Had tea with my Sara last night. Have I mentioned how much I love her lately? We didn’t do anything special, but it was just so good to see her. It’s been a month, I think, so I needed time with her. We shopped for bathing suits for my girls (which were too big, so I have to return them-ugh), bought some books, drank tea (and I had to have herbal-no caff for me), and talked.

Things to blog about later:
-Our discussion of men
-The Hill of Doom
-The thing I found at Borders that has me peeved

But for now, I’m off to bed because my butt hurts.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Headache update

Went to the doctor-he pretty much said what I thought he would say. He has two cures for all ills: more exercise or antidepressants. So I got the "you need to get more exercise" lecture. But at least I didn't get the "you need to lose weight" lecture. I'm finally at the target on that one. He did tell me to stop the stuff I'm taking and gave me a migraine medicine instead. Getting ready to take that and go to bed. Let's all pray I wake up headache free. :)

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Figuring it out

Sooo... of course we all know that usually when I gripe about stuff, there's always something else-and given that I was in pain, I didn't do all that great of a job of getting at the underlying thing. There are reservations there that I do believe are of God-whether it be a warning or about something specific, or the thing in general, I don't know. So given that God and I have been pretty close lately and he's been talking to me really clearly, it had me a little freaked out. I didn’t know where it was all coming from. I knew some was an attack, and some was well… I didn’t know what. Which is why I needed prayer.

So tonight, went to church, even though I wanted to stay in bed, but that new little convert of mine thinks we need to go to church every day. Given that it’s church night, off we went. I decided to find my friend Jodi, who is an amazing and discerning prayer warrior, and we agreed to meet after church to pray. During worship, the whole breathing attacks were freaking weird. There were literally times I could not sing because the breath was taken right from me. But I just focused on the words (which, you know, could the songs they did tonight be any more perfect? David Crowder rules) and it subsided. Then Dave got up to teach, and again, it was just weird-it would come and go, but I kept feeling stronger and stronger each time it went.

Then I sat down with Jodi, and of course, we didn’t just pray, I talked it out with her. I’d already told her on Sunday (which is when the attacks sort of started) that my attitude with all this stuff God is doing in my life right now is “Bring it.” Jodi laughed, because well, that’s something one should not tell God lightly (trust me, she has seen it all-she is one amazing prayer warrior). But see, I meant it. I’m ready for God to transform my heart and just do what I should have let Him do in it ten years ago. I’ve wasted precious time, and I’m sick of it. I’m ready to move on. So whatever He needs to do, then let’s just do it and not piss around. We talked a little more about what’s going on, and then I let slip the invitation I issued God yesterday. Which was, whatever is standing in the way of my worshipping Him, to take it away. Given that I’d just finished reading Job, that’s one big fat invitation. If you read something about some crazy lady’s house blowing up, killing everyone inside, well, now you know, it’s me, and I, dummy that I am, asked for it.

And yet, I’m either incredibly stupid or just really ready to lay it down, because I mean it. Whatever is standing in the way of me and my God, I want it gone. I’m not satisfied with this place where I am. Honestly, if God said, “sell everything and move to Africa,” I would. Crap, He’s gonna send me someplace really sucky like um, I dunno, someplace I don’t want to go.

So, going back to the whole conference thing. Jodi pointed out that this is my old self and my transforming self at war. Flesh versus God. The parts I am afraid of-totally flesh. The rest-God is asking me to trust Him in doing things that are not me. And duh, that’s kinda sorta the point. Which led to us praying about the God voice thing, that His voice is so clear to me that I have absolutely no doubt that it’s Him. However, that also means when I hear it, there’s no excuse for not obeying. Because see, the thing I do realize, and Jodi reminded me of again, is that it doesn’t matter what things look like to me. God will make all of this happen and I don’t need to do a single thing, other than get out of His way and obey when He comes calling.

The fear that God has put into me? Well, He reminded me (as well as Jodi and my beloved Todd Agnew-I at least owe the guy a pan of brownies-anyone know if he likes brownies?) that this thing… it was borne out of anger, hurt and frustration. I need to let God mold it into love, and that’s what I need to keep in check. There is a ferocious beast inside me, and yes, God is working on it and healing it. But the warning is that at every step, I have to ask, “is this about me or about God?” "Is this my flesh or my faith?"

Because here’s the thing: Ultimately, what was revealed to me, what I have refused to admit until now, is that this is bigger than a book. God has set me on a path, a calling, a ministry, that is absolutely huge. The scary part, at least for my fleshy self, is that He’s not intending this for some “down the line” deal. It’s coming. It’s coming soon. And I have to be ready. Which is something I guess I recognized all along, otherwise, I probably would not have said, “Bring it,” or told Him to take away whatever stood between Him and I. However, admitting it publicly like this, well, I can’t exactly turn back now, can I? Not that I could have, given what I’ve already committed to the Lord.

Yeah. I sound so brave, don’t I? I sat there in church tonight, praying with Jodi, shaking and tears rolling down my cheeks, and all I knew was that I’d asked God for something really huge, and the things it was going to take… didn’t matter. Remember what I said in a previous post, about believing God? That I either did or I didn’t? If I don’t step out on faith, I’m still that same liar, now aren’t I?

Prayer Time

Okay, fine, I'm going to do it... I need some prayer on a couple of things.

The first is that I've been getting really bad headaches for the past few months. For a while I put it down to stress, since I was working so much, and then allergies due to the weather, but I'm really sick of feeling like this all the time. Basically, my headaches are exactly what most people describe as migraines, except that they're sinus headaches. Part of my worry with the headaches is that I've been using a combo of Sudafed, Tylenol, and Caffeine to make it through, which is fine, however, a lot of times, my body becomes so dependent on the medication to function that it becomes this weird cycle of dependence and I hate that. So I'm going in to the doctor tomorrow (which is a total God thing, because I have one of the highest rated doctors in the area, and he usually can't get people in so quickly). I'm 90% positive he'll just say it's stress, yada yada yada, which is part of why I've fought going, but I'm hoping he'll be able to do something (other than try to put me on antidepressants, which is the only thing I don't like about him-he's really fond of those things-and I have HUGE issues with them).

The second is this writing conference I'm thinking about going to. Heather told me about it because it has a lot of nonfic stuff. There's a part of me that says I should go, and yet, as I sit down to commit to going, I am literally having anxiety attacks over it. And while I know Heather is probably going to counter it with it being the bad guy attacking me over it, I honestly don't know that's where this is coming from. Last night, when I read over some of the editor/agent stuff (you get one appointment each day), I literally could not breathe. Every time I even think about it, my heart just thunders in my chest so badly, I feel like it's going to explode. So here are my concerns about this conference:
1. I don't know anyone there. I realize most of you think I'm this social butterfly, however, that's only true if I'm around people I know and am comfortable with. Around complete strangers... let's just say I do not do that. This would be a first for me-committing to going to something where I know NO ONE. (And yes, I know Heather wants to match me up with her friends, but I don't have peace about that idea either).
2. Roommate thing-Cost wise, I should probably have one, but again, that means finding a room with strangers. They have roommate matching, so that's not a concern, but I just don't know if I can do it.
3. The whole market thing. I'm going because of this stupid nonfic book that I'm being forced to write. But here's the deal: I really am not aiming for the churchy people of the world. So why on earth am I putting myself in the path of the very people I DO NOT want to be around? Plus, as I was reading about what the various editors/agents are currently acquiring, big surprise (NOT) to find out that they don't want what I'm writing.

Okay, I'm having a hard time breathing again, so I'll shut up now. Plus, I'm at the need to throw up stage of the headache, so um, yeah.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Blowing Stuff Up

Now that's a title for a post, if I ever did write one.

I decided to update my MySpace blog and profile.  I talked a lot about blowing stuff, and I realized that I am BORED.  So I started to bug Heather, and she was no help, I just sent her a buncha stuff to read for some unknown reason-hey, maybe she can make some sense out of the two books.  Or not. 

And since I'm SUPPOSED to be writing, I thought I'd do some of that.  Well, there's the problem, oh genius self (did you know that the subconscious doesn't know the nuances of sarcasm?  So if I'm being sarcastic in calling myself a genius, my subconscious thinks I'm really saying I'm a genius and acts accordingly).  Bored bored bored.

No, make that PRO-CRAS-TINATING.  Okay, so my edits-did I tell you all that my CPs LOVED my rewrite of ch 1?  I totally rocked it.  I know, I rule.  So here I am, staring down chapter two, and I know I have to get rid of  like, at least the first two or three pages.  But what do I do instead?  I DON'T KNOW (in my best whiney voice).  So I'm stuck.  And I'm stuck on The Book, because I don't know if I'm supposed to write IT, or the OTHER one.  And then I wrote this OTHER thing today about God, and well, I just don't know what I'm supposed to be doing.  I have too many possibilities, I think. 

However, I have NOT gone blog hopping.  I was saving that for a reward when I've been productive. 

Okay this is SERIOUSLY killing me!  Fine.  I'll work on chapter two.  But don't blame me if it sucks.

The wrong book?

Well, there I was, innocently going about my life, and through a variety of sources, I started getting a teeny tiny little message-The Book? I'm writing the wrong one. Yes, God wants me to write That one, but there's another one to write too. One that must come first. I think. I don't have a lot in it yet, the other one is longer. I'd write more about it, but my wrists are killing me, sad to say. And given that I didn't sleep last night, just a couple of naps today, my brain isn't working all that well either.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Okay, so I'm officially an old married lady

Yes, it's official. I thought life ended at thirty. However, it takes a few months, apparently.

 Here I am working on my edits, yes, yes I am, and my always intelligent and insightful CPs say, "This round of revisions was awesome. But you think you could let us know where you are?" Um, at a club? Isn't that obvious? "Yes, but which club? What sort of club is it?" Well, crap. A trendy club? "Yes, but which trendy club?" As if I know. Would you like to know the last time I went out to a club? Eight years ago, thank you very much. I don't think sitting at the bar at RWA counts, does it? Maybe it does. I don't know. Well, wait, we went dancing at that bar in the hotel in Reno. Surely that counts. Granted, it wasn't a go out and meet men sort of deal, given that my husband was upstairs sleeping, and even when I was footlloose and fancy free, I was not the sort of person to go out and meet men, but hey, that's about as wild as I've ever been. I know, boring. Although I did always have fun, so I don't think it was all that boring.

 Anyway, here is my dilemma. My characters are young, hip, and out having fun. What would be the name of a club that they would go to? You know, a trendy club? A place where they'd go, eat, and of course, dance. :) Help me out here, will you? Ah the trials of being an old married lady...

The Messenger

Tonight, I sat and watched a movie with That Man.  He was in the mood for action, so I watched his choice.  I know, I'm such a good wife.  Chalk me up one more on the sainthood list.  :) Speaking of saints...

We watched The Messenger, which is the story of Joan of Arc.  Now let me make one thing clear.  This is a violent, bloody, gross movie, and I HATE watching it.  However, I was in "be a good wife" mode, so I sat and watched it with him.  And dang it, if I'm going to suffer through a movie I CAN'T stand, dangit, I'm going to make it worth my while.

Fortunately, God was standing right there to help me out.  Gotta love it.  Watching a movie about a chick with visions from God, and God decides to smack me upside the head and say, "Pay attention, dummy."  So because I'm a very nice person and won't make you suffer through all the blood and gore (which, you know, I've decided God is a very gross dude-I mean, there's the whole blood sacrifice thing, and all the wars His people have fought over the years, and well, ICK).  Oh, I'm digressing again.  Seriously, though, even though I'm beginning to accept that God is neither obligated to nor seldom decides to tell us why, I REALLY want to know about the whys of all the gross stuff.  Why does it have to all be so gross and yucky?  Childbirth, come ON, it's a freaking MIRACLE, and God has to make it all gross and stuff.

Ah, just another thing to add to my, "Why, God" questions.   Seriously, though... Isn't there just a ton of weird stuff you want to know about God and what He's thinking on stuff?

Oh yes, back to the Messenger...a couple of really good quotes that just got me.  There's this scene right when Jeanne is talking about the seige of Orleans. 
"And what does Jeanne think?"
"I don't think.  I leave that to God."
So they talk for a moment or two, and Jeanne tells them that if the English don't go home, they should attack the Tourelle.
Dunois (the guy in charge) says "Besides, if we are at the other side of the river attacking the Tourelle, what's to stop Talbot attacking the city from the North?"
"God." Jeanne speaking
"God.  Why of course.  We've forgotten about him." Sarcastic guy, don't know his name. Everyone laughs.
"I feel a great sorrow for you.  You are laughing now, but by tomorrow night, some of you will be dead."  Jeanne speaking
"Jeanne, with respect, we can't just attack the Tourelle like that.  It's a very complicated matter."
"What's so complicated about it.  All you have to do-is do what you're told. What could be simpler than that?"  Jeanne speaking
They banter a bit about it being a girl giving these orders... and Dunois says, "Put yourself in my shoes for a moment. How would you feel if you were me?"
Jeanne says, "Knowing what I know-enormous gratitude."

Well, don't that just beat all?  By far, the most incredible, outstanding, and completely full of awesome God wisdom in two minutes of some weird secular movie about Joan of Arc that has her mostly coming off as a lunatic.  God, my friends, is everywhere.

Don't know where that came from, but it probably beats my other weird and shallow observations for the day.  Speaking of, and going back to the movie... the comraderie between supporting characters was awesome.  I loved the character of Aulon, played by Desmond Harrington, who is going on the list of potential heroes.  And I really loved the whole deal with the blasphemous guy. (in the middle of the scene I just described.  REALLY good scene.  Worth sitting through the bloody bits for, IMO, even though there's only one really bad scene before this one.  However, if you want to fast forward and only watch this one, it's just under an hour into the movie).

I should probably point out that this is like the 4th or 5th time I've watched the movie, we own it, in deference to That Man's preference to gross movies.  He does, however, sit through my countless watchings and re-watchings of movies like How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, so I don't complain overmuch. :)

Speaking of blasphemy, and yes, I admit this is the romance lover in me, but as I was watching the interplay between Aulon and Jeanne, I really thought he was in love with her, even though her mission/mind was on God.  So I was thinking, what if Jeanne didn't get caught and burned at the stake-what if she completed her mission and God let her live out her life in peace?  Wouldn't that be an interesting story?  The hero fights alongside the heroine, not because it's his calling, but because it's hers, and then SHE conquers all, or they do it together, but you know... it's more than just the man rescuing the damsel in distress. 

And okay, let's just go back to my, "Why God" questions, even though, yes, this movie did point out that it's not my job to think, but you know, God made me this way... but I'm digressing-again.  So I want to know, and let's assume here, that Jeanne was truly a messenger of God.  Why did He let her burn?  What Kingdom purpose was there in her suffering?  Moreover, there's this really gross scene where she's surrounded by all the blood and stuff, and she's totally grossed out and confused by it all, because she doesn't understand how God is glorified by all of it.  The next scene, God just makes the English all leave.  Why does God choose to do both?  Even if you look at the Bible, because you think Jeanne was loony tunes, all of these wars the Israelites fought, they were bloody and gory as all get out.  Why not just blow up the bad guys and get it all done with?


At least that's what the little voice is telling me.  Would the victory for the people of France have meant as much if God just smited their enemies on the spot?  Would the victories of the Israelites have meant as much?  Would Christ's sacrifice mean as much if we'd never had the precedent of having to get all bloody and gory to be right with God?  Without sacrifice, victory means nothing.

Then, of course, is the final piece I got from this movie-obedience.  Could you be obedient to the point of being burned at the stake?  If God says, "Don't tell," and telling could save your life, would you be able to obey?  Truthfully, I hate and fear pain.  I don't know if I could or not.  Could be why there's no Saint Danica.  :)  Anyway, the other obedience point I noticed was that when the people (besides Jeanne) were obedient, God delivered them.  He promised Orleans by nightfall, but when Jeanne was wounded, despite her urging to go on, they pulled back.  And the battle was longer and bloodier.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Working in my heart

As you all know, God has been bugging me/working on me to write The Book.  And YES, I am working on it.  YES, I am writing it RIGHT NOW.  Look at the freaking time if you don't believe me. 

So here I am, getting all this work done on my heart, and YES, I am letting God deal with my sin.  But you know, I'm getting really pissed off and touchy that He has to deal with it ALL RIGHT NOW. 

I have to tell you all the story that I didn't tell last week.  Thursday, at the Bible study, prior to the whole Easter conviction crap (which ended up being really cool because that led to Bay accepting Christ), we did the last session of the Beth Moore video.  Long story short, it had been a crappy morning, got to a late start, missed a lot of it, but got in time for the end.  One lady starts praying about how she's not been believing God (which is what the study was about).  And CRAP. 

I bawl about weird stuff.  I do not just start freaking crying over important stuff.  You eat the cupcake I've been saving for my treat, I'll bawl.  You run over my dog, and I'll just sit there and do nothing.  Put me in front of a sappy movie, I'll bawl.  Blow up my house, and I'll just laugh.  God stuff does not make me cry.

And then, this other woman starts confessing her sin.  God touches my heart in just the right place, and I start freaking bawling.  And I mean bawling.  I'm crying sitting there, confessing my sin to God, and CRAP.  He did something freaky in my heart, and now it's just all over the place.  Every little screwed up thing in my heart is now pouring out and God has decided we're going to work on it all.

So what was my great sin?  Some of you will probably go, "DUH, Moron, I could have told you that," but me, I didn't get it until that moment where that wall in my heart broke.  This whole thing is on Believing God.  I've always said I believe God.  I do.  I believe God's promises.  But see, when God said, "Danica, write this book," I said, "Oh, God, I'm not worthy."  All of that stuff about believing God? BULLSHIT.  If I believed God, I would believe that God would be there for me to write the book and it wouldn't be at all about me and how worthy I was, but about HIM.  I lied.  I lied to myself, I lied to God, and I lied to everyone else in my life-I said I believed God, but what I meant was that I believed God about the things I chose to believe God about.


So you'd think THAT would be enough.  And nope, it's not.  There I am, minding my own business, and God says, "Hey Danica, you know this thing?  Let's work on it."  Okay, fine.  A short while later, "Oh, and this other thing, Danica?  Let's take care of it too."

Am I grateful?  Well, of course I am.  Yes, I want to be a better person, and yes, I want to be the person God wants me to be.  The crazy thing is that lately, I have all these people telling me what a great person I am.  We're sitting there in the bar at 1 am last night, and I have my coworkers sitting there going on and on about what a great compassionate person I am.  Every day at work, these people were saying, "Oh, Danica, you are so patient.  Oh, you are so kind."  I'm regularly issuing death threats, and yet the people around me think I'm this great person.

I am NONE of those things.  The person they were going on about how compassionate I am towards is actually this person that I continually think mean things about because he's a pain in my butt, and so I feel guilty and am therefore extra nice to him because I know it's wrong to thing mean stuff about him.  The people I'm patient with?  I can only be patient because I have visions of their little heads blowing up into little tiny pieces and that somehow placates me enough to be kind to them.

You want to know the kicker?  There I am, on one of the online boards I've started frequenting of late, and this gal decides to pass on this quote about how we only love God as much as we love the person we love the least in the world.  CRAP.  Any guess on what God is working on now?  So not only do I now have to be nice to all the people I want to have smited off the face of the earth, I have to actually love them.  Where's my bomb emoticon?

And God is working on my marriage.  And on the baby thing.  And on my new house.  And on my money.  And on my family.  And I'm tired.  Crap.  It's late.  And I really can't spend all day in bed today.  I can't find my kitchen.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Coming Down

Well, here we are... the day after the last day of tax season.

So the last day... kind of anticlimactic, if you want to know the truth.  Sort of a weird day, not too busy, not really slow either.  Went out for drinks after, as per tradition.  Hang out, chatted, got home incredibly late, went to bed.  I slept almost all day today, minus a bit of time when I took the kiddos out to get some lunch.  I got up at about 5:30, fed the fam, and Bay decided to insist that we go to church.  So we did.

Great lesson, weird God thing happened, we ended up running into an old friend who'd never been to our church before, so it was very cool.  It's cooler if you know the whole story, but I want to tell a different one.

Got nagged by my friend at church about having another baby (she's on my side that I need at least a half a dozen)-brushed it off, and then I came home to an email from larry.  Now, let me tell you about my friend larry.  She was my best friend in college, we called each other larry and Bob.   Anyway, larry sent an email with a link to pictures of her newborn son.  ACK!!  She ALWAYS does this to me.  She never tells me she's pregnant (she lives in OK), until she's had the baby.  So when she had her first son, I get an announcement in the mail-funny thing is, I'd just gotten pregnant with Bay.  With her second, I actually did know about that pregnancy, because she was supposed to come visit, but had to cancel due to being on bedrest.  Would you believe THAT son was born 9 months ahead of Kay?  So here she is with son #3 and I'm thinking, CRAP, how could it be that she just had ANOTHER baby and I'm not yet pregnant!  DANGIT.  Plus, if she just had a son, then that means my next one is going to have to be a girl, because we've already decided that our kids are going to marry each other.  ARGH.  I WANT A BOY!!!! 

Okay, brilliant plan... so I'll have another girl, and then, we are FINALLY going to get together-my family and larry's.  larry's DH is going to explain to my DH how to make baby BOYS, and my DH is going to teach larry's DH how to make baby GIRLS.  Okay.  I feel better now.  However, if I got pregnant now, I'd have the baby in February, which is the middle of tax season,which really messes up my plans.  I'm telling you, it's darned inconsiderate of larry to have another child without consulting me.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Where is everyone when I'm in a good mood?

Now that is the question of the hour.  The midnight hour.  While I am sitting here, bouncing off the walls, excited and happy.  Is anyone around?  No, they're off somewhere, sleeping off their Easter basket coma or having fun or whatever, but obviously, it's not with me.  Fine.  Be that way.  I'll just have a party all to myself.

You see, after much struggling, nagging That Man to get his portion done, and general worrying and obsessing, our personal tax return is DONE.  Yes, I know, it's a miracle.  However, there's an even bigger miracle I'd like to share.  Between our Federal and State returns, we are getting back TRIPLE what I'd originally planned for.  I am so happy!  :)

I told That Man, and then I told him that he could get the thing he'd been planning to get with our refund and have money left over, and he says... get this... it is so cool.  "Well, honey, you want a new house, and before I buy anything with that money, I want to sit down and figure out the best use of the money to get you closer to that goal."

Miracle number three, thank you very much!

Of course the main miracle of the day is that today is the anniversary of Christ rising from the dead, and who can compete with that? 

Finally, I'm going to list one other really cool miracle that actually happened Friday, and thus far, no one has had a parade, even though *I* think it's the coolest thing in the universe.  Bay accepted Christ.  :) :)  Where's a cheerleader when I need one?

Can I tell the story?  Oh, I'm going to anyway, so I don't know why I'm asking permission, but here goes. :)

We were sitting there, and Bay said something to me about the Easter Bunny.  So I said, "Well, you know what Easter is really about, right?"  "No, Mom, I don't."  Which was semi disappointing, because we go over this at least annually, and we also have other conversations about it, because she's really into the whole "Jesus died on the cross" dialogue.  So I explain to her about Easter, and then I say, "And today is the day Jesus actually died."  Of course, just as my know it all five year old always does, she argues with me.  "No, Mom, he's alive."  "Well, yes.  But today is the anniversary of the day that he died, and then on Sunday, when we celebrate Easter, we celebrate that he rose from the dead to give us life."  And then I said something to her about how now Jesus lives in Heaven with his father God.  "No Mom, you're wrong.  Jesus is God."   Well crap.  I know that.  But how do you explain the whole Trinity thing to a FIVE year old when most adults don't get it.  She's too young to understand the water analogy (which is the only way I know how to explain it-theologian I am not).  So I smiled and said, "Yes, Bay, you're right."  She snuggled up to me and says, "Mom, you know that thing where you talk to Jesus about your heart?"  "You mean where you ask Jesus into your heart?"  "Yes, Mom.  I think I'm ready for that.  I need to let Jesus come live in my heart."

And so, we laid there and I prayed out loud for her and had her pray with me, repeating the words, and there ya go.  I had a brief freak out mommy moment where I wondered if I'd said the right thing or whatever, but I calmed down because I know that we have the wonderful intercessor of the Holy Spirit who knows exactly what we mean, even if we screw up in the right expression of it.  God knows our hearts.  And I know that He knows that Bay loves Him and accepts Christ as her savior. 

So I'm really excited, because this was clearly something on her heart, and not something I said, hey, you need to do this.  Plus, it's just so cool that she actually GETS it.  :)

Friday, April 14, 2006


Well, I had some exciting things of spiritual import to share, but instead, I have some cute pictures to share:  Baby's first haircut and Bay getting her long locks chopped off.  My babies are growing up.  :(


Where we started, the process of getting her hair cut, and the after shot.


Aren't they just the cutest babies ever?  But look at them... they're not so much babies, are they?

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Funny things and answered prayers

Last year, for those of you who've been reading my ramblings that long, you may recall that I got a boyfriend during the tax season.  A nice man who spoke no English, but liked me well enough to follow me around and ask if I wanted to go out for burritos.  Okay, I think he was rather icky, but I remember nothing about it other than it was a funny story.

So today, I acquired a marriage proposal.  From a gay man.  A well off gay man, but a gay man nonetheless. 

Ahhh... such is my life.

The next funny thing, I'm on the phone with That Man, and I tell him that if the house is in the same condition it was when I got home LAST night, I'm turning on the gas burners of the stove and lighting a match.  I had a semi crazed tone to my voice, and I freaked out one of my coworkers-one of the ones who thinks I'm so patient.  LOL.  Fortunately, I came home and it was livable enough that my family won't be appearing on the news anytime soon. 

That Man, however, did not take my threat too seriously, because he said something about us having insurance.  To which I replied that I was pretty sure our policy didn't cover arson.  (I think that's where I scared the coworker-the joys of cubicle living)

And then he told me about how this friend invited him to a Men's Retreat.  Now, you have to understand, I think the friend is a total nutjob.  I don't think That Man has any normal friends.  Anyway, That Man was hemming and hawing, trying to get the courage to ask me if he could go, because his relationship with God isn't so great right now.  I told him, "You should go."  He says, "Really?"  DUH.  "Yes, I've actually been praying about it."  "Really?"  Huh, am I talking to a broken record?  "Yes.  I pray every day about you-some days, I'm begging God to send down a lightening bolt to smite you, and the rest of the time, I'm praying for you to get closer to God."   Long silence.  I finally say, "You think I'm joking, don't you?"  Uncomfortable laugh on the other end of the phone.  "Uh, no."

See, I told you I'm not a nice person.  I am glad that God chose to answer the whole get closer to God prayer, though.  It really bugs me that he's just not as spiritually driven as he once was, and that I'm much more into it than he is.  At heart, I really am an old fashioned woman who wants her husband to be the head of the household and the spiritual leader.  It drives me nuts that everything is on my shoulders, and that he's just sort of there, hanging out. He used to be a pretty cool dude, and we used to have some pretty cool conversations.  I miss that.  So God, do your God thing on this man, get him to realize that it is all about You and not whatever weird crap is in his head.  Or you can just smite him.  I'd miss him, but it would also be fun to watch a lightening bolt come down from the sky and smite someone.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Oh where is my bed?

(Sing the title of my post to the song of the VeggieTales Tune-The Hairbrush song)

Did I mention I'm exhausted?

My day was just peachy.  Got up, called tech support over the thing at work FROM HOME, got it handled, only to have the client go to an alternative source.  Went in to work early, took care of the situation, went back home, took a nap, woke up late because That Man conveniently forgot about some things he had to do so he didn't call me in time to get up and get things done.  Worse, he wasn't going to get home in time for me to get to work in time and I had a busy schedule of appointments. Got THAT worked out, got  to my appointment just a couple of minutes late (I called them and worked it out :) ).   Had a fairly great night at work.

My early clients were just so delightful.  I mean, really nice folks. Had a great time.  Got stuff done.  I'm almost nearly caught up on my work. (I got behind, thanks to my tech support nightmare).  I don't care what company it is, tech support sucks.  Dear computer people, my computer crashed, can you help?  No habla english... (except that it's usually some dude in India, I don't know the Indian phrase for it).  Dear bank people, you screwed up my account (eh?  No comprendo).  Oh wait, that wasn't my point... so it was a fairly nice evening.  Got to chat with my friendly neighborhood shyster client, who felt the need to explain over the phone to me why he wasn't a shyster for 30 minutes.  Dude, I don't care.  I think you're a sleaze, however, I let the IRS make that determination.  That's life.  Pay your taxes.  Then die.  If the IRS isn't happy with that,then they will simply go after your estate.  It all works out in the end.  To their favor, not yours.

So as I very patiently (while wanting to ring idiot's neck) listened and explained, my coworkers were nominating me for sainthood.  See, that's the thing I don't get.  I could list all sorts of people who commend me for my patience.  I am not a patient person.  Frankly, I think most people are morons, and I really don't enjoy dealing with them.  I enjoy mocking them, yes. But really, dealing with stupid people is at the bottom of my list of favorite activities.   I spend the conversation imagining different ways of knocking them off.   Huh.  If you're dealing with a moron, think about knocking them off with a smile on your face, and everyone else will think you're a fabulous person.

Seriously.  I am not that good of a person.  I'm not patient.   And yes, I can smile and make nice with the worst of them.  I may look like it on the outside, but I don't feel like that on the inside.  So it BUGS me that I have all these people thinking I'm this great person.  I'd love to live up to that, but really, I have visions of exploding bombs dancing in my head.

And then I come home, and find lots more things to add to the list of why That Man needs to be strung from the nearest tree.  But I'm such a great wife and mother... ARGH.  I issue daily death threats against him. I am having to continually repent of my bad thoughts about him and pray for God to give me strength and wisdom in dealing with him.  I ask God DAILY to either change That Man so I can live with him or change me so I don't kill him.  People think I'm joking, but I assure, I am not.  Okay, I am joking-I could never kill anyone unless they directly threatened the life of someone I loved.  Even then, I'd probably only maim, and end up feeling guilty about it for the rest of my life.

I had a point about this, but really, it all goes back to the bed.  Which is where I want to be.  But I'm so mad at That Man that I'm liable to toss and turn or kick him until he wakes up long enough for me to let him have it with both barrels and then not sleep all night because I feel bad about waking his stupid snoring stinky butt up.  Yes, my bedroom smells like man butt again.  One of the items on the list. 

I'm supposed to take the kiddos on a play date tommorrow, but I'm beat and probably won't get up early enough to go.  Plus, my house is a disaster, and I ought to pick it up before it is condemned by the health department.  The thing that sucks about having the man home is that I just have one more child to clean up after.  But he is getting his paperwork done, slowly but surely, so I am thankful for that. I'm thankful he hasn't allowed the children to blow up the house.  I'm thankful the children haven't tied him up and scalped him.  And, even though it's hanging from furniture in weird ways, I'm thankful I have clean underwear.

Now to work my way through the jungle of toys, dirty and clean laundry, pieces of toxic waste I'd rather not have identified, and hopefully find my bed-if I can make enough room on it for me to sleep, since That Man (despite my frequent complaints) has yet again allowed the children to sleep in our bed. 

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

In case you were wondering...

I did not get off work until 11:30 this evening. I got to handle a messy divorce, a nasty custody battle, and a shyster who not only wanted me to help him cheat the IRS, but he wanted to teach me how to make millions buying foreclosures.

And to think, I get to do it all again tomorrow. First on the agenda-call tech support for the um, 5th day in a row, over a problem they still have not corrected. Then, I'm going to um, do something else, and then, I'm going to get caught up on all my work, and the clients I do have are going to be really super nice and really super easy. Actually, my clients today were all really super nice, and I did enjoy them. It just gives my brain too much to ponder-like the whole messy divorce thing-felt really bad for the gal, who seemed very sweet. Custody battle-guy was super nice, but very depressed, tried to tip me (which is against my employment contract) and made me feel bad when I couldn't accept it-it was a pretty big tip, and I knew he couldn't afford it, but he wanted to do it so bad. I felt really bad saying no, but I'd have felt worse taking it. Shyster-well, he was just a shyster, but it makes for a funny story.

And have I told you about the guy who's always in the middle of having sex when I call? *shaking head* What kind of idiot answers the phone right in the middle, only to tell the caller he'll call back later? What kind of idiot answers the phone period? And given that this has happened more than once, I want to know what kind of idiot would be having sex with an idiot that answers the phone in the middle.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Would someone please shoot me?

So there I was, minding my own business, and our Good Lord gave me a small bit of info-aka If I want to sell a book, I'd better get my hiney in gear and write the book He asked me to almost ten years ago.  Okay, fine.  I slowly begin to accept that okay, until I do what God asked me to do, I don't get to do what I want. 

And, because I'm such a good little girl, I'd planned on working on it and getting it out there so I could go back to the other stuff I want (and NEED) to work on.

Maybe it's because I was reading Job today, and maybe God wants to teach me a lesson, or maybe it's just a coincidence.  HOWEVER, I received the following email today:

Hi Danica,
Congratulations! Your entry "The Kissing Game" is a finalist in the Short Contemporary category of the Fab Five. It has already been sent on to agent Linda Hyatt for the final round. The results will be announced during the WisRWA Mad About Romance conference on the first weekend in June.


Okay, let's be honest.  I'm THRILLED to be a finalist.  It feels great.  But DANGIT, why am I getting this now when I've been clearly told by God that my nonfiction writing has to come first? 

I'm going to go stick my head in the oven now...

Saturday, April 08, 2006

NO I haven't gone to bed yet

Did I mention that unlike in previous weeks, I will not have an opportunity to do my weekly collaspe and sleep for twelve hours?

But can I sleep? No.

Have I mentioned that I'm a 10-12 hour a night kind of girl? And I'm getting 3-4?

Oh, remember my love for the Bruce Wilkinson book, The Dream Giver? Shelly gave me a CD of a talk he gave about it. WOWOWOWOW. I'm now alternating between Todd and Brucey baby. I'm slap happy again, aren't I?

Anyway, my point of this post is not to whine about my lack of sleep, or rave about Bruce-I'll save those things for another day. I spent some time updating my links. Haven't deleted dead links yet, but I did add a whole slew of them. If you aren't on there, and you want to be, please let me know. I did not intentionally leave anyone off, so I'm happy to add you. Especially frequent posters... do pipe up and say you're not on there. Even though I'm a sleep deprived, raving psychopath at the moment, I do want you on the list, so to speak.

And NO I am not working on The Book. I'm taking a night off. I had other work to do. Like make Heather ROFL about every five minutes. And introduce her to one of Todd's songs that fits her life right now. And chat with Rae. And plan the next five months (roughly) of stuff. And sort through more tax stuff.

Can I just say one thing that astounds me? I know, like I need your permission-it's my blog-ROFL. I just input a year's worth of checkbooks into Quicken. Yeah, I know, I should do it as it happens and then I won't spend a week with my arm feeling like it's going to fall off. Anyway, it disgusted me how much money went through my account in a year. That's just my personal account, not That Man's. I'm thinking we're wasting a lot of money somewhere. Ugh. And I do have another cool thing I discovered about our finances. I was a little put out doing our schedule A, because I don't have a lot of um, receipts for the money we donated, as far as amounts. I just felt like we were real cheapskates this year. BUT, as I looked at our checkbooks, I realized I actually did give away a lot more money than I thought. So I don't feel like such a grinch now. I still want to do more, though.

Okay, time to harrass Heather some more and maybe go to bed.

Well I had a picture to post

But I can't see it now... it was on That Man's computer, but for some reason, I can't find the folder he put it in.  This, my friends, is the downside to having four computers (sadly, we have two others, but they aren't hooked up).  Nice for everyone to do their own thing, but sucks in sharing info.  Logic to him is well... man logic.  Don't get it.  Ain't pretending I do.

So, you'll have to wait to hear my cool story and see the cool pic tomorrow.  I know, I'm terrible.  I can't help myself.  But once again, I am so excited, and I just couldn't keep my trap shut.

Other exciting things in my life... um, nine days and counting until I can say THE END of tax season.  Today was my day off, but I went in anyway, because I had a couple of client issues to resolve.  UGH.  Not my fault.  But I just have too much of a conscience to let people hang for several days worrying about their taxes.  And actually, the end of tax season won't be The End, because I was asked to stay on for offseason.  Which is pretty cool, since it's invite only, and most of the folks doing it have done it for years, so not a lot of slots.  I think I'm only going to do it on the Saturdays this one gal can't work, since it is a day job, and I'm hoping that by the time summer rolls around, DH will be back to work.  :)

While we're on the subject of pictures, I do have a question to ask.  What constitutes um, shoot, don't want to use the phrase and pop up in seach engines, inappropriate posting of pictures of children in states of undress?  I have this adorable pic of Kay, wearing nothing but socks and shoes, washing dishes.  She loves to "help", but hates getting wet and messy, so she strips to do dishes.  (Yes, this one is going to be some man's ideal wife-That Man wanted to know what I don't clean house like that.) 

Okay, I suppose I'd better get moving.  Even though I went to bed late last night *shaking fist at the sky* and got up horrifically early to go to the office, and had both planned naps cruelly interrupted, I'm not tired.  Right.  That whole, I can sleep when I'm dead thing, right?

Friday, April 07, 2006

Woe to me, for I am Ruined

So here I am, working on The Book.  Is it any surprise that yet again, God is not letting me sleep?   I wrote an entire freaking chapter.  Yes, a whole chapter.  And is it enough?  No.  I lay down at a most respectable 2 am, and God keeps yapping.  So fine. 

Did I mention that I committed myself to going in to work tomorrow morning, even though I don't work days, and I am supposed to be OFF tomorrow?  But I have clients to reach who can only be reached in the morning, so there ya go. 

Have I made my comment about how this is so not funny?  No one's going to be laughing when I collapse and DIE from lack of sleep.  Yeah yeah yeah.  I know, I'm not going to die.  But I feel like it and I am therefore going to whine all the leverage I can get out of it.  Do not remind me of that verse about doing everything without complaining because I will probably bite your head off.

However, I do have a much clearer vision for The Book, which is why I'm writing now, rather than saying STFU to God and going to sleep.  All in all, it'll work out.  I just really really really want to sleep.

Thankfully, I have Todd to keep me company. I've decided that the only music I can listen to right now is Todd Agnew's Reflection of Something CD. Everything else sucks. I even bit DH's head off for playing our beloved U2.

Sing with me now....

How long..... how long.... how long.... to sing this song...

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Why Bother?

Well, I could write about how I'm in such a deja vu period right now.  So many events in my life are happening similarly to events from the past, and I can't help but wonder if God is giving me a sort of do-over, to remember the things I did wrong the first time and do them right this time.  Which I have to say, "CRAP," because I'm not so sure I'm doing it right this time again.  At least we've got a patient God, right?

Heather did a very wonderful thing for me... well, she found a wonderful thing for me.  :)  And for some reason, I have a feeling I'm not supposed to talk about it yet, although I am so excited I just want to so bad!  So, you'll have to be on yet another one of my weirdo cliffhanger things.

Doncha just  hate that?  When you're bursting with all this stuff and you can't say a word?

Okay, I'll shut up now.  :)

Sooo... who wants to chat Veronica Mars?  Logan was acting like a complete jerk (although I thought it really funny how Gia had him pegged), but that moment where he danced with Veronica was very sweet.  I want him to turn back good so they end up together.

The thing with Thumper.  Totally not surprised.  The surprise witness-again, totally not surprised.  And is anyone wondering what the deal with Beaver is?  Please don't make him gay.  He's kinda cute, in a sort of him being a complete felony so it's more adorable than anything else way.   I'm starting to think that Woody is in with the Fitzpatricks.  I wonder what they have on him.  Watching the building blow up was cool.  Heh heh.  I like watching stuff blow up.  For some reason, even though they show Thumper and his motorcycle in the building just prior to the blow up, I don't think they were really blown up.  I think our beloved Rob Thomas wants us to THINK they got blown up but really, they didn't, and there's going to be some surprise ending dealing with it in an upcoming episode.  Because you know that Rob Thomas is the sort of writer I'd like think myself-he's got so many twists and threads, he leaves them hanging between episodes so you're so totally engrossed that you have to wait a few episodes for resolution.  The only thing I don't want to emulate is that I would never turn a hero into such a jerk as he has done with Logan.

Are you listening to me, Mr. Thomas?

Oh, can we go back to the Beaver being cute thread for one sec?  Sure we can, it's my blog.  I'm starting to feel old.  All these cute guys on tv are felonys.  Am I the only one who remembers admiring men on TV and thinking, oh, man, he's so old.  Now-they're all young.  I'm the old one!

Apparently, my new line is going to have to be:  "He'd be cute if he wasn't a felony."

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

The truth is so good I have to turn it into fiction

My clients of late have been giving me fodder for all sorts of things.

The first, not really on a writing front, but I've had this idea for a long time that I need to write a letter to my congressman to ask for a bill proposing a change to tax law.  I think parents who pay child support, but can't claim the kid, should at least get some sort of tax credit for it.  So, the other day, I had a client, who is getting royally screwed because of how much child support is taken from his check, which I don't think is a big enough paycheck to live off of, let alone what he's got left after paying child support, and I was reminded of it.  I have no idea how to go about proposing a bill, but hey, the idea's there, and maybe when the tax season is over, I can get right on that.  heh.

The second, this client tonight was hillarious.  I have to ask if she's married, so I do, and she says yes, but she's filing separate and in the middle of a divorce.  Okay.  A few minutes later, she interrupts me and says, "Oh, but it's a marriage of convenience."  Now you know me, the writer, I am DYING to ask.  But I was good.  I didn't.  But I really wanted to know.  So we're working on the return, she talks about her boyfriend, and then has to go home to get a checkbook and come back.  Okay, fine.  She returns, and before I can say anything, she says, "first I need to tell you about my marriage.  I don't want you to think I'm a bad person, since I'm married, but I have a boyfriend."

Can I just say that it was by far, the best story I've heard in a long time?  I'm writing it now.  SHUT UP to the voices reminding me of my OTHER projects.  I mean, this is one I've NEVER heard before.  It's actually more of a marriage of inconvenience than it is a marriage of convenience, but it is SO good.

Oh, I am so excited now... Shoot, I planned on going to bed early and giving some attention to That Man, who is feeling deprived.  Ah well, he doesn't have a job, so I'll spend time with him tommorrow.  OR, I can wake him up with my giggling when I get to bed and he'll send me to my computer and I can keep working.  Tee Hee.  I'm so brilliant.

Monday, April 03, 2006

I did mention I was tired, right?

Well, I went to bed last night at 7:30-slept until noon (although really it was only 11 due to daylight savings).  I got some things done around the house, had our small group over, and am now trying to edit this *%&#$*(#$ book.  Why is this so dang hard for me?  GRRRRRRR

Maybe when I'm satisfied with this first chapter, I'll see if I can find a chick lit reader.

Have I mentioned I'm so tired?

But, waiting for my nightly appointment with God.  So, not going anywhere, just finding weird ways of procrastinating.  ICK

And in other good news, my tickets to the Todd Agnew concert arrived yesterday.  I am so happy that I bit the bullet and ordered them before That Man got laid off, otherwise, I probably would not have ordered them. 

Have I mentioned that I'm exhausted?

I really have nothing to say, just wanted to let folks know that I'm alive.