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Saturday, September 30, 2006

Beating around the bush

Today I did an unusual thing and signed into Yahoo. Heather nearly died of shock. She asked me why and I told her-I'm procrastinating on The Book.

It's been heavy in my heart to work on it lately. But, I keep finding other things to do. The funny thing is, I know specifically what God wants me to write about. And here I am, unable to sleep with a cold that is kicking me in the butt, so I cave. I say, "Okay, fine, I'm going to go there-to that deep, dark, icky place that I don't go." So far, in my writing, I've meandered all around it, and not quite gotten to the exact story I've told so many times in my head, but can't bring myself to actually put on paper.

Just as I am finally to the point where I have no choice but to write it, I realize, I've been slacking on my blog as of late. I know, more beating around the bush. But you know, there is a part of me, knowing that people do look here for encouragement, crazy stories, and whatnot, that feels bad that I haven't been delivering lately. I know, I put too much pressure on myself.

The truth is, I am so scared of these deeper emotions that my friend told me I needed to get to. They make people uncomfortable. They make me uncomfortable. It becomes easier to push it off when I have so much else going on in my life, so much stress. Tonight, I almost missed the class I'm taking because I'm so burnt out from teaching that I just couldn't bear to get off the couch. My instructor, who's a friend of mine, laughed when I told her. She could relate. She's also an introvert who can pass as an extrovert when need be. But, like all true introverts, there comes a point when we have enough and need to crawl into our little holes and hide from the universe for a while.

I have a feeling that's why, given that I've had no contact with sick people, that I feel this horrendous cold coming on. I'm not slowing down, so my body is forcing me to. Lovely. Can I tell my body to STFU already? Oh wait, I've done that, so now it's telling me to.

The good news about beating around the bush is that eventually, you get close enough to the bush that you do end up hitting it. Or at least that's my theory. My head is about to explode and God (I should call Him That God, LOL) isn't going to let me sleep until I do it. I talked to my friend Joni today, and she brought up a good point. That when I finally do take the leap and go directly for the bush, while I will be exposing the old wounds, it'll be a step toward healing.

So why is that just as scary a proposition?

Isn't it funny how we get comfortable hanging on to our brokenness? You don't know what you're going to do with yourself when there isn't that hurt to hang on to. Suddenly, it means standing on your own feet and using the pain of the past as a tool to help lift others out of the mire. Crap. That means actually accepting responsibility.

I wonder how much cold medicine it would take to override God?
(rhetorical question, I assure those of you who stumble in and don't know me all that well-I'm not stupid enough to OD on cold medicine, and frankly, when He starts talking, ain't no amount of cold medicine going to shut Him up.)

Wednesday, September 27, 2006


So I almost gave myself a concussion yesterday. I very nearly asked That Man to take me to the hospital or something. What was my problem? I walked into a door-literally. Well, okay, I slammed a door in my face. And actually, I didn't slam it. We have one of those spring loaded screen doors. I opened the door to go in for something. I thought I heard B's bus. I turned and looked, letting go of the door. The door slammed me in the face. The nose, to be exact. I still think it's broken, but That Man says it's fine. All I know is it hurts.

Over the weekend, I went to my cousin's wedding. It was fun, like old home week. My cousin married into a family that I absolutely adore. It's a HUGE family-I think there's six or seven kids, who each have 3 or 4 kids (which is my generation), and who now have kids of their own. One of the girls has a daughter born on K's birthday, so it was fun to compare the girls. I really loved seeing everyone. I felt a bit old, given that most of the "babies" whose diapers I'd changed were there with their kids. ACK! Actually, I babysat both the bride and groom. The really fun part is that MY childhood babysitter was there.

I had some fun observations, but I don't remember them. I've been fighting a headache all afternoon. Actually, I've had it since I slammed my face in a door.

I have bible study in the morning. I wish I could just sleep instead. But if I don't go, the kiddos will still get me up, so I might as well go, eh?

OH, and another fun thing-well, not so fun, maybe, but cool or something. Or maybe it's just sad. I ran across an old boyfriend about a week ago-you know, the hot, successful one who dumped me for no good reason. God has an amazing sense of um, something. I'm not thinking all that clearly, so bear with me. Anyway, it turns out that this guy is still single, living a life that I definitely would not want to be living, and... hahahahaha... here's the funny part-he's going bald. Usually, I don't laugh at the follically challenged. But this guy was sooo vain about his hair. He spent more time on his hair than I did. If I played with his hair or anything like that, he'd totally freak and then dash to the bathroom to fix it. He had enough styling products to outfit a salon. So I am rolling at the irony of him going bald.

Oh, but God's sense of whatever. If I'd ended up with this guy, I'd be living this totally different life-one that I would not have been happy in. He knew what I needed, so even though this guy made me feel bad way back when, I am soooo glad I didn't end up there. :)

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Problem solved

Well, not exactly, but it's a start.

As many of you who regularly read my blog know, when I start whining and wrestling with God, He likes to say, "Okay, dummy, I'll show you. No sleepy time tonight." Yep.

My tired head hit the pillow and the little voice hit me...

"Who said things were supposed to go right for you?"

Excuse me? What was that?

"Where exactly do I say that things are going to go right for you?"


All right then, so what would be the point of this exercise in insanity?

"What's more important to you? Me or things going right for you?"

Ummm... you?

"So why are you spending more time whining about how bad life sucks than you are on me?"

Ummm... because?

"So what's more important to you?"


Does this mean things will get better now? Or is this just the prelude to the big dump? Yeah. I guess I'll be up a little later while we wrestle it out, eh?

I should probably comment on the fat thing before you all do

Okay, I know-some of you think I'm the skinniest thing ever. And I could live with that, except that when I gain weight like this, I feel like utter crap physically. I'm back to the weight where my doctor said, "You need to lose a few pounds". So for me, it's a medical concern as well. Yes, it bugs me that my stomach is like jello. I accept that my hips will never fit back into the size 2 jeans I wore through college. I'm fine with that. I've borne two children, and I have the stretch marks to prove it. I'm fine with that too. The fact that my husband's chest is bigger than mine-well, okay, that smarts a little. But nothing can be done about that other than surgery, and I am NOT down with that.

The way I see it, it could be worse, but it could also be better.

Did I mention I tried on clothes all afternoon? ICK

The other thing I wanted to say, because I have a friend who deals with being overweight. I went to her house a few weeks ago, and all over the place, she's got sticky notes reminding her how fat she is. ICK ICK ICK. She is really a very pretty woman. In fact, and this might have some of you barfing all over yourselves, but here it is: Most of my friends who are overweight-they are a thousand times prettier than I am. And they never realize it. All they see is that compared to them, I'm skinny. This girl is so worried about how fat she is and how being so overweight, she'll never find a husband that she is not seeing how completely gorgeous she is. And I want to put that encouragement out to those of you who read my blog-for those of you whose pictures I've seen-you guys are so freaking gorgeous, it amazes me. I don't get how I can be surrounded by so many beautiful people. And before you say, "ah, she's not talking about me," let me just stop you right here and say, "yes, I am."

So why am I whining about my weight then? I guess, because on top of all the other discouraging things that have been happening to me lately, it royally sucked to know that even though I am trying so hard to do all the right things weight and health wise, there I am, wasting good money on new pants because I'm obviously not doing it right enough. In case you didn't get this, I seldom, if ever, buy things for myself unless they're books or something I absolutely NEED.

And no, my bad mood of the last post is not based solely on having to buy new fat pants. It really is a culmination of nothing going right for me lately. I seriously cannot think of a single thing that's gone right in the past couple weeks. Everything I've thought would be a blessing has been not so much of one, and all the good things that were supposed to happen have not happened.

I really need to go to bed.

Friday, September 22, 2006

A deep dark ick mood

Yeah that about says it all.

Anyone feel like blowing something up?

Here's what I don't get-you work so hard, and no matter what you do, it's like spinning your wheels and getting nowhere. So here's the basic foundation of my mood tonight-nothing is going right for me right now and it's so hard. I mean, okay, before I get too poor me melodramatic, I will say that I have two great kids, a husband who lets me sit here and cry over this garbage, a roof over my head, and food in my belly. But I can't help but ask, is this it? Is this the best I can hope for my life to be?

And yeah, okay, the whole God thing. I get it. He's the point. And I could content myself with that-if I lived in a monastary or a convent. And trust me, I've considered it. If I ever lost my husband or kids, you can pretty well count that I'd go join a convent. Seriously.

But that's not my point. Really, I don't have a point, except to whine about how hard my life is, and how I seem to be sucking at everything I attempt. I hate that all these people keep putting me in charge of crap that I just can't do. And I hate that just when I think I'm finally getting it, I get slammed down so hard I wonder why I even bothered trying in the first place.

I know, I sound like a pathetic loser right now, and I'm sorry for that. I'm just hurting, and mad, and I really don't understand. Why would God give me all these dreams and opportunities if all I'm going to do is fall flat on my face? If I'm just going to keep spinning my wheels? How exactly is all this mess glorifying to God? Is it just so that I can realize how utterly impossible it is for me to do this on my own? Newsflash-I got that already.

Yeah, so I'm a bit hostile. I just don't get it, and I don't get the point, and for a person who needs answers and reasons, this is not a good thing. Like, I know that in the end, it will all turn out okay. But I want the map. I want to know HOW. I want to know WHEN. This whole God thing completely sucks for a control freak like me. And you know, it's not so much the control thing that bothers me, but the knowledge and understanding thing. Because I really don't understand.

And maybe I sound like some petulant child who has everything but still has to whine about the things she doesn't have. Trust me, I hate myself for even being whiney about this. Because I know I have it good. I know that I am blessed. I know that God loves me despite all of this ick. And even if I get ickier, God is still going to love me.

I am just trying to make sense of all this mess I'm trying to dig through-is it like the donkey caught in the well-where as much as I think I'm getting more and more crap dumped on me, in reality, all my stomping is eventually going to get me out? Lord, I hope so, because I honestly don't know how much more I can take. I am retreating into serious hermit mode. It's funny, I don't do any of those things that a lot of people do to dull the pain. I don't drink, do drugs, sleep around, overeat, hurt myself, hurt others-I just hide out and pretend it doesn't exist until I forget about it and can move on. Not very healthy, either, I suspect, but I've never claimed to be sane.

Ah, it's midnight now, and I still have packing to do. Family wedding this weekend-had to buy new pants because it's going to be too cold for any of the dresses that fit, and my dressy pants are now too tight. You know life sucks when you haven't done anything different, but you're getting fatter. I am convinced, however, that all of those "no sugar, no calorie" diet drinks actually make you gain weight. My weight gain started when I started drinking them. ICK.

Going to bed would absolutely rule about now. There's a man and a dog waiting for me. But we have an 8 am soccer game, and then we're hitting the road, so unless I want a super early morning, I've got to get ready now. Fat pants, here I come.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

My fun new hobby

Mission get rid of man stink is complete. In the past twenty four hours, I have done ten loads of laundry. (My bedding alone is four)

In the process, I discovered a fun new hobby: Tormenting That Man. Yes, I know, I do it a lot anyway. However, today I took it to a whole new fun level. Paranoia. All he knows is that I'm doing something that I think is sneaky and fun. His brain is doing the rest. It kills him that I won't tell him what I'm up to and that he has no Internet access. And of course, because he knows the twisted places my brain likes to visit, he has all sorts of thoughts running through his brain. Tee Hee.

Anyway, I am off to sleep in my lovely clean bed.

If any of you are sans stinky man for a couple of nights, I highly recommend this. My Sara is going to be doing the same thing when her man goes out of town next week. I should start my own anti man stink club. :)

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Those stupid TV people/Man junk

One of the very minor pieces of trivia you may not know about me is that I do watch television other than Veronica Mars. I know, shocker, but I've got to have SOMETHING to do until October, and my second favorite show coincidentally comes on AFTER my beloved Veronica, so it works out perfectly. Tonight, the season premiere of Law and Order:SVU. Now, for those of you who don't follow the show, allow me to recap you. Last season ended with some lovely tension between Stabler and Benson very much unresolved and I was quite looking forward to seeing some resolution this season.

How do they start this season? Blah blah blah, they go through a mildly entertaining episode (aka Benson and Stabler are working together, but Benson is mostly with the stupid FBI girl, so we see none of the Benson/Stabler chemistry I love. ICK). At the end of the episdoe, it turns out that my beloved Olivia has supposedly infiltrated this band of eco terrorists, and now she's cleared out and is working with the FBI undercover. Um. NO. First, I would just like to say that there is no way Olivia is going to be able to pass as this ecoterrorist chick any further than she already has. Second, GRRRRRR... Okay, yes, I understand the whole Mariska was pregnant deal, so they had to work her out of it for a while. But come ON! What am I going to do without my beloved Olivia for so long?

On top of that, That Man is off traipsing about the globe while I'm stuck at home with kiddos. Okay, fine. I've had it with all of his stinky man crap, so I decided that while the hubby's away, the wife will... clean? Yes, I know, I'm sick, terribly sick, but there's nothing that can be done about it. My goal is that tomorrow night, I will be sleeping in a clean bedroom, free of the rotten stench of man butt and other miscellaneous man junk. I am even going to sleep in fresh, clean sheets all by myself and will be able to enjoy a perfect, wonderful, night's sleep. I am so excited.

Anyway, as I was cleaning out his half of the bedroom, I had the TV on for background. Do you know that there's this horrible show where they clean out people's junk? Okay, I originally thought it was a cool show, because I was hoping it would give me ideas for stinky man stuff to throw out, but then they started tossing books. "Why do you want to keep this book?" "Because it has memories of..." "Are you ever going to read it again?" "No." "Okay, let's throw it out." WHAT? Who ARE these freaks that they allow on television? If anyone EVER sends one of those stupid TV people to MY house to throw out MY books, I will personally shove any and all books they try to throw out up their... oh, wait, I'm trying to be nice.

Some of you are probably wondering, well, if you're so uptight about your books, why don't you leave That Man's man junk alone? First off, I am not throwing anything out that does not belong in the garbage. You know, wrappers, soda cans, nasty half eaten moldy stuff I don't even want to know what it is, papers, weird odds and ends (stuff he has said I can toss), toenail clippings, mud, I hope you get the picture. It's GROSS. I have to live with that. On the plus side, I have collected about $15 from his floor. Wahoo. And then, there's the laundry. I've always believed that I'm his wife, not his mommy. So, like a good wife, I do his laundry, fold it, and put it on his chair. He throws it on the floor. Also, being a man, he "recycles" clothes, so there's also a pile of "not dirty enough to wash". Over time, these piles get mixed up, along with the dirty clothes that don't always make it to the dirty clothes area. My rule: you want it washed, you either put it in the dirty clothes, or you leave it somewhere that will really irritate me so I pick it up and wash it. I don't recommend the second option, because it comes with major attitude on my part.

Well, major attitude is here. I found almost an entire washload worth of dirty, smelly socks. Any guesses, aside from the trash I threw out, why my bedroom smells like something died in it?

Except for the fact that I am looking forward to sleeping in a CLEAN room for the first time since the last time I went this ballistic (and that time didn't count, because he came home, dumped his stinky man stuff on the floor, so it really wasn't pristine), I would question my sanity in doing this. See, the trouble with those cleaning out the junk from house shows is that all it does is give the people room for more junk. Because I'm the nice wife that I am, the man junk that I have no discernable place for goes into a box for him to sort and put away. Thus far, I have accumulated a number of such boxes that now sit under my bed, and to my knowledge, he has never attempted to clean out. Tempting to toss, I can assure you. But I respect his man junk. Besides, he'll keep bringing home more.

Needless to say, I'm not in happy Dreamy mode-I'm tired, sneezy (from all the dust that has popped up-did I mention his side only gets vacuumed if it's picked up?), and irritated. I know that he'll come home, dump his bag on the nice clean floor, take all the clothing that I washed and folded, throw it on the floor, and things will look just as they did when he left. However, I will have one amazing night of bliss that I am soooo looking forward to. I'm going to savor every moment, because I know it will be months, even years, before I get the opportunity again.

(And since I know That Man is reading-I would just like to take this moment to say that if he really wants to do a loving, romantic thing for his wife, he'll come home, unpack, put everything where it belongs, put away his clean clothes, and even take a stab at his boxes 'o junk.)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Growling Bunnies and other items of note

That's the name of B's soccer team, and I have to say, what a great name for a bunch of five and six year old girls. So B had her first game today, and WAHOO! She scored 6 goals. I love watching kids that age chase a ball around a field.

I'm in a tired, bleh, mood, so not a whole lot else to say. Yesterday, I was really funked out, but just as I had completely hit the lowest point, one of my dearest author friends called me. I'd talked to her last week about the whole likability factor with my characters, so she told me we'd talk this week. Well, I was in the midst of mega feeling sorry for myself over the fact that life just keeps handing out the crap and not bothering with the toilet paper. I'd pretty much gone to my room, pulled the covers over my head and decided I was going to spend the baby's naptime until I had to get B from the bus stop feeling sorry for myself. But, then the phone rang, and I was forced to choose: indulge in self pity or do something about it.

So... want to hear her great advice? Motivation, motivation, motivation. In my case, it's there. I know what motivates my characters, but it needs to be clearer on the page for the readers. And I need to go deeper. Faster. And as she gently suggested, I'm not drawing from the more emotional part of me to do it. Okay, yeah. So maybe I am a bit afraid to go there. But going there-that's what is going to create the stories that touch lives. Alrighty then. Better get on a wet suit or flak jacket or something like that.

The other thing we talked about was The Book. She agrees I need to write it. I'm pretty sure she was laughing when I told her the whole God thing behind it. You know, the "Danica, you lovable idiot you," laugh. And then the little stinker used my beloved Todd against me. She said the thing I needed to remember, in terms of my angst over my heart needing to change so that I could write The Book, is that I had to remember something important about his quote. He wrote the song before he was in a place where God could use it. It didn't get used until he was in that place. But he still wrote it. He wrote it first. I've been waiting to write The Book until I was in the right place. Um, it doesn't work that way. And, as my dear friend pointed out, perhaps it's the process of writing The Book that is going to change my heart.

Right. So back to the drawing board.

Or maybe I'll just run away and become a growling bunny.

Thursday, September 14, 2006


That Man and I never watch the news. It's too depressing. But tonight, just as we were watching the tail end of CSI, the preview for the news caught our eye. It seems that one of our local teachers, a teacher both of the older children had, has been arrested for child pornography.

I do want to point out that I very much believe in the American justice system, and that you are innocent until proven guilty.

But you know, I'm a bit shaken. He seemed like the last guy on earth, if you know what I mean. The kids all loved him, and IMO, he was one of the best teachers the kids had. He made such an impact on the oldest, that he even came to his high school graduation party, and he teaches elementary school. I just-I can't picture it, and yet they showed footage of his IMs with a supposed 13 year old as well as him on his webcam. ICK.

I just don't know what to think or believe right now. But I do know, that if these allegations are true, it's just devastating. Even if they are false, a man's life is now ruined and the peace of mind of a community is just destroyed. I keep thinking in my head that he taught two of our children. He seemed like such a nice man. If he could do such a thing, and I still can't wrap my brain around the idea that he would, how can I be certain that my children are safe in the future. I couldn't pick this guy out.

But like I said, he was arrested, not found guilty, and I'd like to believe in his innocence, even if the bits of evidence on tv were pretty convincing.

So please pray for him-if he is innocent, that he would be able to survive this ordeal, as the information on the news was pretty overwhelming and bad. If he is guilty, I pray for his healing. And I also would just like prayers for his family as well as the community at large. He was so loved by the people in the school-I can't imagine what a shock this is for them as well. And of course, please pray for the victims and their healing. The news report said all of this was with an undercover police officer, but who knows if he did anything (if he did do it) to an actual child.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

An overdue post

Most of you who know me know by now that I have a lot of great intentions-I mean well, but sometimes I get sidetracked in all the "stuff" life throws at me.

Rewind a couple months *cringe* to the CBA conference. There, I had the opportunity to hear Philip Yancey speak about his new book on prayer. Now, for those of you who don't know who he is, all I can say is go forth and buy ALL of his books. Seriously. The guy has such an amazing take on Jesus that for people who've written off "The Guy" because the churches stink, it'll make you stop and rethink "The Guy". Because truly, if you've listened to my rants long enough, and heard my thoughts on The Book, you know that I'm not particularly fond of most churches, but boy, do I love Jesus.

Anyway, Yancey's main topic was on Prayer, which, coincidentally (haha) is the topic of his latest release. He said a lot of cool things, and I really felt inspired to make some changes on my blog. Which I promptly forgot to do. Fast forward to tonight. Philip Yancey was a guest speaker at my church. Wahoo. Except I was on nursery duty. We had a record 20 babies in there. Needless to say, I did not get to hear my beloved Yancey speak. I know, sucks to be me.

However... afterwards, he did a signing. WAHOO ME!! I bought his latest book on Prayer (Me-el cheapo girl-actually paid $18 for a book). I also picked up a copy of The Jesus I Never Knew, because I don't know where mine is. Stood in line while my children went completely bananas, got my books signed, got to meet him and his wife (who is an incredibly sweet woman-she corralled my kids and got my older child to help me while I chatted with her hubby). And he encouraged me in my writing. Super Wahoo Me!

So back to the change I had wanted to make to my blog. I was reminded of this because at one point, we had a number of screaming children in the nursery, one of whom is a breastfed baby that we couldn't really help, if you know what I mean. So I got to go into the service to put the kiddo's number up, and my beloved Philip said something that made me forget my mission. He was talking about praying for Al-Qaida, and what sort of difference it would make if we each "adopted" a member of the group to pray for.

Praying for one's enemies.

We're really good at praying for our friends, and if someone says, "hey, I need this," we'll say, "I'll pray for you." But what about our enemies? Jesus says we're supposed to. But do we? Okay, I admit to praying that their house will blow up or they'll be infected with boils as a result of the horrible things they've done to me. But what about sitting down, and saying, Lord, help me to have a right heart toward this person. Teach me to love this person as you do." Because yes, folks, God loves the members of Al-Qaida too. Not what they do, but them. And because Yancey is a billion times smarter than I am, and because he quotes a guy who is also a billion times smarter than I am, I'm going to quote his take on it from his book.

"God loves his enemies," concludes Bonhoeffer; "that is the glory of his love." We defeat our enemies by loving them, and prayer activates that love.

I am so weary of some of the burdens I carry. Tonight, I spoke with a man who I had a grudge against for a really long time. Our problems were based off of a misunderstanding that snowballed into what became a nightmare for That Man and I. Even though That Man had pretty much forgiven this guy a long time ago, I had a harder time with it, but I got over it. However, this person is back in our lives. And he's apologized to That Man several times. Usually, he calls for That Man and doesn't say all that much to me, but since That Man wasn't home tonight, he talked to me for a bit. I could tell he was nervous, talking to me, and I know that he's commented to That Man about being nervous that I would still hate him. But we talked, and he apologized. And while I haven't hated him for a long time, there was still a feeling of relief in having that apology, rather than the hate, between us.

What does that have to do with prayer? A while back, this person became a father to a special needs child. I began to pray for him and the child. Did that lead to this guy's apology? I doubt it. But what it did was open my heart in compassion towards a person that I disliked for a really long time.

An appropriate ending to the evening of almost hearing Yancey speak. But hey, the book is right here, so I'm sure you all know what's on my agenda for the next few days.

So here's the challenge I want to give to you guys-and, I'm going to try to do this as a semi regular, semi permanent deal. I'm creating a wall of prayer. We're going to be praying for our enemies. I'm committing myself to pray for my enemies, as well as any enemies that people want to list. I hope you'll join me on this journey-I've started a new blog Praying for our Enemies just for that purpose. I hope to see you there!

Monday, September 11, 2006

Why travelling with me is more fun than having a needle in the eye

So, in case you didn't totally know, I was in Portland for the weekend. Have I mentioned I love Oregon? If it weren't for all the gray days, I'd move there. We almost did, but that's another story.

Which brings me to the KY jelly story. Being the good nonterrorist that I am, I checked the TSA site to see what I could carry on and what I had to check. The lip goo that I love-NOT allowed. However, they DO allow up to 4 ounces of personal hydrating fluid, aka KY jelly. Yes, they specifically mention it.

I REALLY wanted to ask a TSA supervisor why, but really, why make myself a target? So I boarded the plane, dry lips and all, wondering if I should have brought some KY. I mean, it's the same substance. I thought it would be cool to pass around a tube of KY like mints. Surely someone else had parched lips. (For the record, SOME types of lip stuff were allowed-MINE was not)

Anyway, we got there, and Shelly picked us up with her little poochies in tow. She has little dogs that would fit in a purse-I want one! But I really do not want another dog. We decided that since we were in Oregon, we HAD to go to the coast. So we drove the two hours to the coast and ate at Mo's. Yum. Although I didn't think their famous chowder was so worthy of the label. But seafood is seafood. Our main disappointment was that we didn't get there until dark. :(

Since we had nothing better to do during the drive, I regaled Shelly with my tales of lip woe. The thing that really disturbed me about the KY jelly was that it's not like you can even USE it for its intended purpose on the plane. They only let you in the lavatory one at a time, so unless you plan on very publicly joining the mile high club, what's the purpose of having it exactly? Besides that, I swear, if you even sniff like you're going to move out of your seat and take off your seatbelt, the flight attendants flip out. Seriously. Prior to this summer, I have never seen flight attendants so paranoid about making sure you're buckled up at all times.

So we spent a lot of time brainstorming about KY-which isn't as funny unless you know Shelly, who is this straightlaced Christian woman who really doesn't make a lot of off color jokes, but boy, when she does... it's funny. Shelly got thirsty, so we stopped by 7-11 to get her a drink and since my lips were still dry, I decided to find some lip stuff. The interesting thing is that while 7-11 had plenty of lip stuff, they did not have a single container of KY. Yes, I checked. Because maybe, I was approaching the problem all wrong. Maybe I should switch my preference in lip products over to KY. And then, I wouldn't have to sit on a plane with dry lips.

The next day, we breakfasted with friends, did a little shopping, visited with some other friends, did a little business, ate until we thought we were going to explode, went to bed. We also told the KY story a couple more times and added a few more product benefits. I'm telling you, we could get jobs selling KY. Thanks to TSA, it's going to be the hottest selling multipurpose product since duct tape.

The next morning, we decided to drive up to Astoria for the day. Unfortunately, it took 2 1/2 hours to go 70 miles, so it ended up being lunch in Astoria and drive back to Portland for the flight. We decided, though, that Astoria is worthy of another visit, and will be planning another trip for next fall.

I had to deep six my newfound lipstuff to get back on the plane, and I regretted not switching to KY. Of course, since 7-11 has not joined the KY bandwagon, I would have been in trouble anyway. I wonder, do you think there might be some sort of inside deal going on? You know, like the KY people paying TSA to make sure THEIR product is on the official list? 48 Hours should do an investigation.

However, it doesn't solve the problem that I still have chapped lips. KY anyone?

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Could someone please tell the universe...

That I am not a toilet and to please stop crapping on me?


Yes, I'm being whiney again. I hate it when I have whiney blogs. It's so weird, despite success in some areas lately, I feel like I am barely holding the rest of my life together. I just don't get why it always has to be so hard. And I'm really hating that I get a glimmer of hope that just sort of dissipates. PLEASE may I blow something up?

Great. Now I can't mention what I'm doing tomorrow, or else I'll have Homeland Security after me.

Dear Friends at Homeland Security,

I honestly do not wish to blow anything up. Frankly, I probably could not blow anything up if I tried. I don't even know HOW to blow stuff up. And if I did, the only thing I would probably blow up, with the way my life is going, is myself. But hey, the bright side is you'd be able to close your file on me, and I'd be with Jesus. Seriously, any and all mention I make of blowing stuff up is just me being PMSy.

Thank you for your time.


I forgot to tell this story! I almost DID blow up the neighborhood on Monday. That was so freaky. We're barbecuing, I have a deck full of people, and I'm just chatting along as I'm flipping burgers. It starts to feel a bit warm, but on my legs, which is odd, since we have a gas grill and the flames are up top, so I feel them on my arms. I look down, and the propane tank is ON FIRE! Now, raise your hand if you know what happens when fire and propane come in contact with each other. If you answered KABOOM! you're partially right.

Ordinarily, that IS what happens. However, because I am paranoid about all the weird man stuff That Man does, we have fire extinguishers on hand. He grabs a fire extinguisher, puts out the fire, and the funny thing is, one of our friends is a firefighter. He didn't realize what was happening until That Man hosed everyone down with a fire extinguisher. Fortunately, the first wave of burgers and dogs were ready about that time, none of them got doused, and I was at least able to get the pregnant lady and children fed before they caused a riot. Unfortunately, the fire melted a control thingy on the grill so the men had to play MacGyver before I could cook more burgers. And, just because I know you were wondering, we did have a spare propane tank-after all, doesn't everyone? You never know when your other one is going to blow up. The men did figure out that the first propane tank had a defective seal, which caused propane to leak, and badda bing, you have propane tank on fire. The good news is that even if I'd blown up the neighborhood, we do live two blocks from the fire station, so they'd have been able to contain most of the damage. ;)

See, even with all the right equipment, right setting, I can't even blow up my neighborhood. I am such a pathetic excuse for a homicidal maniac.

You know, maybe that could be my next book-homicidal maniac who desperately wants to blow up the universe and keeps failing miserably. And, because I'm a miserable, rotten psychopath, my heroine will finally succeed the day she meets Mr. Perfect. Can she keep the universe from blowing up in time?

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The only thing keeping me from blowing something up

Is my beloved Todd.


Critique did not go well. Okay, maybe it was a bit ambitious to think that they'd come up with something like, "Wow, Danica, that was the most brilliant thing you've ever written." But basically, despite the fact that my writing is technically perfect, they once again, hate my characters.

Why am I still doing this?

Frankly, I LIKE my characters, but no one else does. I do not get this. Am I that much of a social deviant that the people I think are incredibly intriguing are the ones that the rest of the world thinks deserves to die?

I don't get it, honestly. For five years, I've been trying to conform to what the whole rest of the world wants, and I just can't do it. I guess I'm stuck as a psychopath or sociopath, or whichever title best fits at the moment.

Fortunately, on the way home, the first song that came on the radio was This Fragile Breath by Todd Agnew (aka my beloved Todd. Since I am such a deviant, and given that I have my little pet name for him, I'm sure he's got his "people" watching me to make sure I don't blow him up or something. Message to Todd's people: I do not wish to blow him up or cause him any harm. I like him. He calms me when I'm homicidal.) Anyway, there's this one verse that really gets me:

I searched the world for a poem I could read
A rhyme that would bring Glory to my King
But no writing I found was worthy of
This God high above All other gods
What are my words compared to yours

It occurred to me as I was listening to these words for probably what is at least the millionth time, as much as I try to write something worthy, it's never going to compare. Nothing that comes out of my brain will ever be the brilliant masterpiece I want it to be. I realize I'm going to seem much more depressed and bitter than I mean to, but I just have to let it out as honest as I can, so bear with me, and don't have me committed. Or no, maybe you should. Because I just do not feel like I belong in this world. And hey, I'd get a day full of nap time and making crafts with popsicle sticks and paste. Anyway... my point.

I don't understand why I'm here. If I was meant to be a writer, then why is this so dang hard? Why did I spend the first 2/3 of my life hearing "Danica's writing is brilliant" only to be beating my head against the wall because the only people I like are the ones everyone else thinks is psychotic. I'm seriously questioning my mental health here, because the people I think are normal and likable are the ones everyone else thinks are deviants.

So okay, I'm nuts.

But what's really nuts-is that despite all of this, I'm still working at it. Trying to be better, to do better, to finally come up with something that really is brilliant. And maybe, in the process, I'll find something worthy of the King.

But if I were you-I'd make sure I always had plenty of Todd on hand, because if I were to lose his music, I probably would blow up the world instead.

Nothing new to report

Well, I'm off to critique tomorrow night. So I've been working on my chapter one rewrites. I'm still not satisfied. Ah well. My beloved Sharon is in town and I'm sure when she looks at it, she'll tell me what I was really thinking and we'll clear it all up. (You can laugh hysterically now.) Actually, I am eager for Sharon to read it because she'll be able to give me the vote of Inspy or not. She's much more objective than I am.

I had a very cute pic of the first day of soccer to post, but I spent a good portion of the evening trying to get the baby to stay in bed and not hurl objects at her sleeping sister, so I haven't downloaded anything. Wanted to get the chapter polished as best as I could before fun time. :)

Fighting off a lovely headache, so I'm off to dreamland now... maybe in the morning, the head will be clearer and when I re-examine chapter one, it will suddenly pop out with what I need. At least that's the hope.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Socka Balls

I can't sleep, so you get a post on Socka Balls.

As you all know, I am married to the soccer king of the universe. Well, I understand that David Beckham might take issue with that, however, That Man is king in my book. Anyway, soccer season is upon us. UGH. I realize it's two seasons ago, but I still have visions of him breaking some poor dude's leg. Last season, a guy on his team got his face broken. Literally. The trouble with old man soccer is that they still think their bodies can do young man soccer. It can't.

Anyway, in addition to That Man playing soccer, we once again have a child in soccer. The older two played through Middle School, and now, it's B's turn. Practice starts on Tuesday. We have the uniform (which she could swim in), we have the gear, but we can't find a decent soccer ball in the right size among the thousands of soccer balls that exist in my home. Personally, I think That Man just wanted an excuse to buy a soccer ball.

We get to the sporting goods store (because God Forbid you buy a game ball at say, Target), and for $12.95, we are the proud owners of a brand new soccer ball for B. The trouble is, K spotted the ball display and started shouting, "SOCKA BALL!". I was NOT spending $12.95 on a ball for a two year old when any one of the thousands of balls we already own will do quite nicely for her. But I did feel bad, since big sister was getting all this cool stuff, and frankly, I thought she was going to kill someone if she didn't get her very own "SOCKA BALL". We had to go to Target anyway, so I told her she could get one there. SOCKA BALL at Target-$4. Happy Baby-priceless.

Except now, she won't let go of her "SOCKA BALL." She screamed bloody murder when we took her out of the car sans SOCKA BALL. In fact, she decided she needed to sleep with her SOCKA BALL. And because little sister was doing it, big sister had to. So, I present for your viewing pleasure... sleeping with our SOCKA BALLS. I am so thankful that of all the horrific things That Man does in our bed (like making it smell like man butt), he does not force me to sleep with his SOCKA BALL. He is, however, quite proud to call the girls his.

(Oh, and for the sake of pointing out that I am a proper mom, my child is clothed under that SOCKA BALL-she sleeps in her undies)

Oh. My. Wow.

It’s a mishmash, guys, despite a title indicating that I’ve had a mega epiphany. Well, I have. I talked with my friend, Lori Wilde and she sent me her worksheet on theme. Despite my disorganized brain’s protests, I actually printed out a bunch, put them in a notebook, and have begun the laborious task of going through each scene and answering the questions.

Um, did I say, “Wow”? Plus, I’ve begun digging through the Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook by Donald Maass, and pulling some of the questions he asks out of it and putting it into this worksheet thing. I can’t stand going through the workbook. I haven’t read most of the books, and of course, I get irritated when the scene ends and I want to know what happens next. I am NOT buying all those books. NOT. NOT. NOT. Although, can I just be a royal witch for about five seconds? He MISUSES my beloved apostrophe in a few places. If you have not read my apostrophe post, then you should, for context. IMO, it is one of the worst sins on the planet. I’m sure I could find Biblical evidence, if given enough time.

So anyway, I am through chapter one in my analysis, and WAHOO!! I am seeing some light, and I think I know how I can improve it and really make it shine.

The Next Item Up For Bid

No, not doing any online auctioning, I just wanted that as a section title. Writer’s prerogative, you know. I have finally put more pics of the kiddos on my photobucket account, so if you know it, you can go see them. I also put a couple on My Space, but was too lazy to do them all. I’m such a sloth.

Catching up with Old Friends

Two way fun things happened over the weekend. One, this guy I knew in high school and went to prom with found me on My Space and reminded me of certain incriminating photos involving a marshmallow fight. Good times, those were. He’s a sweet guy, was a good friend, and for all you single gals, he is still single. I could totally hook you up. He does a mean BBQ. Of course, he’ll probably kill me if and when he reads my blog, but hey, he’s clear across the country. HAHAHAHAHA.

The second way fun thing is that I went to a BBQ at a friend’s house (I know, two social events in one weekend, what is WRONG with me). It was cool, though, because it was basically a get together for a bunch of us who served together on the same ministry team at our church for a long time and well, after a series of unfortunate events, I’m the only one left of the gang. The last time we got together, B was just a baby. It was fun, because we have newlyweds, new babies, and just a lot of life to catch up on. It reminded me how much I miss them, and you know, as much as there are things I do like about our church, seeing my old cronies reminded me just how isolated I feel. I haven’t had church buddies like them in about five years. Ugh. I was supposed to be talking fun here! It was fun, though. I just wish they all didn’t live 45 minutes away. We did promise to get together more often.

In Conclusion

It’s been a busy, crazy weekend, and tomorrow, I am having around thirty people in my house. I am insane. Insane, I tell you. Tomorrow, look for tales of Socka Balls unless something more amusing happens at the party. Perhaps another funny think involving Socka Balls will happen.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

Viral Blogging

Well, you know me, always supportive of my friends... and when I read Nalini's blog a while back about this thing she was doing, I meant to do it and forgot. Fortunately, she posted a reminder, so here it is. Do pass it along, and do check out her book if you get a chance. She does not necessarily write to the specifications of some of my readers, but she is still a terrific author, and just as terrific a person, so go out and support her.

I am participating in a blogging experiment hosted at dearauthor.com. To enter the contest, put up this blurb, image, and trackback and you are entered to win the following prize package.

  • $200 Amazon gift certificate

  • Signed copy of Slave to Sensation

  • New Zealand goodies chosen by Singh

  • ARC of Christine Feehan's October 31 release: Conspiracy Game

You can read about the experiment here and you can download the code that you need to participate here.


Nalini Singh

Berkley / September 2006

Slave to Sensation

Welcome to a future where emotion is a crime and powers of the mind clash brutally against those of the heart.

Sascha Duncan is one of the Psy, a psychic race that has cut off its emotions in an effort to prevent murderous insanity. Those who feel are punished by having their brains wiped clean, their personalities and memories destroyed.

Lucas Hunter is a Changeling, a shapeshifter who craves sensation, lives for touch. When their separate worlds collide in the serial murders of Changeling women, Lucas and Sascha must remain bound to their identities…or sacrifice everything for a taste of darkest temptation.


Did someone put something in my tea?

Okay,so even though last nights lament was a trifle on the depressing side, I think I finally broke through a wall in my thinking. Some of my own negative beliefs were translating themselves into my writing, and I think, too, the long-lost memory of the response I got to that very first book has been lingering. Crazy how we do that to ourselves, eh?

Anyway, I had a breakthrough tonight. I finally finished the read-through that I've been procrastinating on, and get this: I am actually excited about finishing the edits on this book. I'd forgotten what an amazing story this is. I am so loving my hero! And okay, I admit to slightly wishing That Man would learn a lesson out of this guy's life and learn that really loving someone means doing what they really need, not what you think they need. Big difference. Oh, but I'm digressing, aren't I? ;)

However, I have to admit to something. Usually, this is another procrastination tactic. This time, though, it's really a serious consideration. This book was originally intended to come after another book. Here's the deal: the first book was the one rejected by Harlequin Romance that finaled in a contest where I got good feedback and thought that if I changed it to an inspirational, I could make what they didn't like work. So here I am, editing the second book, and there are references to the first book. It stands alone, but if I am going inspirational, it really makes sense that I do the first book first, so that I can sell them in order, right? Except that I truly am excited about editing this second book. Although, when I got to the references about the first book, I felt excited about that book too. I seriously love these characters. Since I committed to editing this one, I will continue. But if you have any thoughts as to what I should do about this first book, it would be greatly appreciated. Should I just delete all the references in the second and then they can just each be totally unrelated? Or do I keep them, finish this, send it, and then revise the first, and when the second sells, or is close, I can say, "Oh by the way..."


Okay, off to bed so I can work on this tomorrow. I am so excited!!