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Posted in Bookish Things, Personal, Writing

I Bid You All a Very Fond Farewell . . .

Hey, people! Just dropping in to let you know, well, I’m taking a vacation. From blogging. Leastwise, from blogging on this blog and my dog training blog. Because I had the crazy idea to start a third blog, called A Need to Breathe, and it has murdered my blogging schedule. Then I was sick for four lousy days and I fell behind.

And now . . . I have to catch up. Which means, I need to take a vacation.

*sighs* I’m going to miss you. 😉 I really am. Which is why I’m already making plans for the cool things we can chat about when I get back in May. This little hiatus is only for April, ’cause April is a crazy busy month. Camp NaNo? Nope. Forget it. But I do need a new writing project, then there’s the new blog, three dogs in need of training, school is wrapping up . . .

Need I go on? 🙄

At any rate, I’ll see you all in a month. Don’t disappear on me! I still have a lot of bookish things to ramble about. If you want to continue to hear from me, you can do so at aneedtobreathe.com and . . . you’ll find a newsletter sign-up there. If you can spare a half-inch in your inbox, you might want to sign up. ‘Cause one can never have too many newsletters, right?

Ah, to quote Bilbo Baggins, “I regret to announce this is the end! I’m going now. I bid you all a very fond farewell. Goodbye.”

*cue vanishing into thin air*

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Posted in Inspirational, Personal

Blogging Updates, Changes, and a Party

So . . . yeah. Big changes coming to the blogging world. Or at least, my blogging world. 😉

Mainly because I started a new blog (“you wwhhaatt?” That’s what said. Ask my evil clone.) and this one is going to take a lot of time/research/attention to get off the ground.

A NEED TO BREATHE

I’d like to be able to juggle all three blogs, but that may not happen. So I’ll keep them all going for now and see how it goes. I’m not super optimistic about keeping all three going, but this new blog focuses on something very important to me: living with food allergies.

The mission of A Need to Breathe is simply to raise awareness and offer hope. About one in thirteen children have food allergies, and teens who deal with it are at a higher risk of depression. That to me is reason enough to reach out in this way.

I’ve lived with a severe allergy since age four – being diagnosed with Celiac makes up some of my earliest memories. I want to reach out to others who are there now.

So, that’s A Need to Breathe. I would encourage you to share it with anyone you know who may benefit from it. And there’s a newsletter sign-up, you guys, because . . . yeah, giveaways. 😃 Seriously, you want to be on that newsletter.

To celebrate the launch of A Need to Breathe, I want to invite you to share a little about your blog in the comments of this post. Tell us the name of your blog and its mission – just in a few sentences. And stay tuned for more tidbits from the grand opening of a new blog. 🙂

A NEED TO BREATHE

Posted in Bookish Things, Guest Post, Inspirational, Personal, Writing

It’s Not Enough to Just Survive (a writing update)

Hey, everyone. I’m dropping in to share something I wouldn’t have shared if it hadn’t been getting such a good response from the blogging and social media world.

In short, I wrote a guest post recently (which, if you follow my dog training blog, you already know) about dealing with severe food allergies as a teen.

GUEST POST on LAMPLIGHTER HOMESTEAD (2)  This had been on my heart for a while, I just never got up the nerve to write about it. When I finally did, it was just so freeing. Most people do not understand the seriousness of food allergies. It is vital that we raise awareness, because it’s not enough to just survive.

You can find the guest post here. I encourage you to read it and share it. Any way you can. (Details can be found in the post.)

Also, I’m hoping to take this material and write a short book on the same subject. 🙂 And, while Promised Land is out of my hands this month, it’s perfect timing!

READ THE POST HERE >>

GUEST POST on LAMPLIGHTER HOMESTEAD (2)

Posted in Highlights and Goals, Personal, Writing

I’m Alive! Let’s Recap . . . (And a writing update!)

Yeaaaah . . . *hides guiltily* I am still alive. But my lack of blogging on both of my blogs might suggest otherwise. What can I say? It’s been an insane month or so. Let’s recap a little.

The weather. Blustery winds – gale is more like it – accompanied by freezing temps, snow storms literally every few days, and 40+ inches of snow already on the ground. Cool, huh? Where do we live? Alaska? Well, no, it just feels like it sometimes. 😑

This driving thing. Yeah, I just finished drivers’ ed. I’m a couple of years late, because I didn’t feel ready for it before, and I’m still not ready. 😉 I’m just completely overwhelmed about that, so yeah, I’ll get back to you later.

The school thing. Well, when drivers’ ed was taking up SO MUCH time, school fell behind, so now I’m catching up.

The blogging thing. Yep. Same. Catching up on two poor, neglected blogs. Thanks for sticking with me, people. You’re the best. 💛💛💛

The four-legged creatures. Also known as dogs, or puppies. Also known as toddlers. Also known as total craziness. So, my training endeavors with them have slowed to a crawl, partly because of drivers’ ed, partly because, well, it’s kinda hard to train one dog when there are three puppies in the house.

The writing thing. Wait, what? Writing? What writing? All I’ve been doing is editing. And thank goodness, I was almost done the Promised Land edit before I started drivers’ ed. But yes, I am now done with my edit of Promised Land, so off it goes to the editor once again! I’m holding my breath, you guys. 😊

I have to say, I’m surprised I still like my book. Usually, I hate it after a couple of months. But I’m still in love with my main characters – Talia and her struggle to identify with her faith;  Owen and his fierce loyalty, which results in terrible indecision. And then all the other characters too . . . like a certain secondary character who was only supposed to have a minor role but then ended up carrying the climax . . .

Don’t you love it when secondary characters do that to you??

Speaking of books, I just finished reading one. (I know – one. It’s terrible. But such is the nature of an insane schedule.) Chasing the Lion, by Nancy Kimball. You guys, this book was good. Really solid and incredibly researched.

Now I’m off to update my dog training blog. Thanks for sticking with me here. I’ll leave you with a right-place-at-the-right-time photo of our cat, Sam. 🙂

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Yeah, he’s not supposed to be sitting with the pots and pans, but . . . do you honestly have the heart to tell him? ❤

What has your February looked like? Snow? Rain? Super busy? Boring? Let’s chat in the comments! I love hearing from you!

Posted in Uncategorized

We Were Created to Create

Check out this piece from Bethany J’s Journal! I had to share it with you guys today. 🙂

Bethany J's Journal

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I know some ultra-creative people. My friend Ashley can paint stunning landscapes. Gia can craft imaginative stories. Natalie can sketch heart-warming portraits. And that’s only a glimpse.

The world is oozing with creativity. Painters, poets, potters and pianists have embellished life since its beginning. They’ve blended colors and forged rhymes and morphed melodies into beauty.

Did you know you’re a creator? Whether it’s a song or a spreadsheet or a software system, every person was born to create.

Why?

Because we were created in the image of an ultra-creative (and brilliantly glorious) Creator (Gen 1:27).

Out of Nothing

My creative friends all have something in common: They need materials to work.

Ashley can’t paint without oils and Gia can’t write without words. As broad and deep as their creativity is, not one of them can fashion something out of nothing.

That’s because humans are mini-creators. Everything we make is only…

View original post 535 more words

Posted in Inspirational, Personal

HOPE.

I’ve recently experienced a burden to share something with you all that has given me an enormous sense of hope while walking through everyday stress and uncertainty. We all go through that, probably often, and if you’re there right now, I hope this gives you the blessing it gave me:

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Mm . . . that gives me peace. 🙂

I hope it encourages you. I’ll be back later for a real post! In the meantime, I’m praying for you all to have a safe and blessed weekend.

“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” – Romans 8:10

Posted in Bookish Things, Reading, Writing, Writing Tips

Punctuation Pantry: the Oxford Comma (To Use or Not To Use)

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Let me put forth a public apology to my faithful readers who have not heard from this blog in a few weeks. Wanna know why? No, you probably don’t. Suffice it to say, school happened, then driver’s ed happened, then editing happened, then a whole bunch of other stuff happened . . . 🙂 Blogs are wonderful, but they suffer when our schedules get stuffed. Who can relate?

But that’s not what we’re here to talk about. The Punctuation Pantry is back, and we’re here to talk about the Oxford comma. Heard of it? Oh, yeah, I bet you have.

Don’t know what it is? No problem – here goes.

I am sending Sally a get-well card, a potted plant, and a new coat.

(I’d like to have a friend who would think to send all that when I’m sick.) 😉

Did you spot the Oxford comma? It comes after the last item in a list. So, after “potted plant.” Now, the controversy surrounding this helpless little comma is that some style guides require it when others don’t. So you have people who like it and people who don’t.

Now, let’s look at that sentence again, without the Oxford comma.

I am sending Sally a get-well card, a potted plant and a new coat.

Not having the comma doesn’t make that sentence confusing. You can mentally insert the separation of the three items. But let’s look at a different sentence.

She took her cousins, Dominique, and Miss Helen to the local fair.

Got it? Now let’s take the Oxford comma out.

She took her cousins, Dominique and Miss Helen to the local fair.

See the problem? A reader might think her cousins are Dominique and Helen. Now, strictly speaking, you’d need a comma after Helen if those names were her cousins’, but that’s a story for another day.

Personally, yes, I use the Oxford comma. It just makes sense. In some sentences, it feels awkward, in some, it’s unnecessary, but in others, it literally makes the difference between a reader understanding and misunderstanding what you’re saying.

And no, you can’t use the comma in one sentence and not in another in the same story. 🙂 Sorry, but . . . no.

So, now that the Punctuation Pantry has been resurrected, tell me your ideas for what we should chat about in the world of grammar!

Your turn! What is your opinion on the Oxford comma? Do you use it? Let’s chat in the comments!

Posted in Blog Tag, Bookish Things, Personal, Reading

Welcome to the Kaleidoscope Tag!

So, if you’ve been around this blog for a while, you know I kinda like tags. And the Kaleidoscope tag will be the second I’ve created myself. This is a tag geared towards books and movies. Who can resist? So grab your favorite reading snack and pull up a chair.

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RULES

  1. Link back to the blog which started the tag and also share the graphic above in your post.
  2. Link back to the person who tagged you.
  3. Tag up to five people (or more, if you want).

THE QUESTIONS

BOOKS

1. Name the first book that comes to mind. 🙂

For me, that is A Little Princess, even though I’ve never read the book.

2. What is the first book that comes to mind when you hear the word, “Christmas”?

Actually, a movie comes to mind for me, but since that wasn’t the question I asked, I’ll say A Christmas Carol.

3. What is the last book you gave (or would have given) a five-star review?

I had to go to Goodreads to remember this. 😉 But it was Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand. If you read only one book this year, let it be that one. (I read the young adult version, so naturally, that’s the one I’m recommending.)

4. Which book (that you can think of right now) made you feel like you were there with the characters?

To the biggest extreme, also. I’d have to say Unbroken. Maybe it was the story itself, but there were many times that I was RIGHT. THERE. Which made it difficult to get through at times.

5. Think of a favorite author – what is your favorite of their books?

I have several favorite authors. But I’ll pick Nadine Brandes and I’ll say . . . five minutes later . . . Fawkes. Or maybe A Time to Rise . . .

6. What’s your opinion on love triangles?

I really don’t mind them when they’re done well.

7. What’s your opinion on cliches?

Cliches, on the other hand . . . yeah, no. You don’t want me to get started on cliches. Granted, you probably can’t write without at least a few small cliches, but to deliberately build a story off of a cliche and then keep the WHOLE THING embedded in that cliche . . .

 

MOVIES

1. Your all time favorite movie?

That would probably be Anne of Green Gables: The Continuing Story. It’s the only movie of the series not based strictly on one of the books, and it’s my favorite. The story was AMAZING.

2. Narnia or Lord of the Rings? (Movies, not books.)

Both. 🙂 Okay, Lord of the Rings.

3. Your favorite classic movie?

A Christmas Carolthe George C Scott version. We watch it every year!

4. Your favorite based-on-the-book-by movie?

Since I can’t say A Christmas Carol again, I’ll say A Little Princess. Just saw it recently for the first time in YEARS. I loved it. (The 1995 version.)

5. Your favorite movie you saw in the theater?

Unbroken: Path to Redemption. Or possible The Man Who Invented Christmas . . . (historical, again). Or possibly both.

6. How many movies have made you cry?

Officially . . . none. But that doesn’t mean there weren’t quite a few that could have.

7. What’s the first movie to come to find when you want a movie to make you laugh?

Moms’ Night Out. Enough said.

 

And that’s it! There you have it. Now to tag people . . .

The World Within the Wardrobe

Over the Withers

Lit Aflame

Life Without A Latte

Kate Flournoy

And Jane Maree

Have fun, guys! And spread the word. Also, if you weren’t tagged, consider yourself tagged. 🙂

Posted in Bookish Things, Personal, Stray Cats

When I Have Writer’s Block . . .

We were looking through some old photos today, and this one popped up. I wouldn’t normally write a post to share one picture, but, um . . . I think you’ll understand. 🙂

When I have writer’s block . . .

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Yeah, I think you’ll understand why I had to share that. This is our cat Lentil. The picture was taken a couple years ago, but that expression . . . and the notebook . . . and pen . . .

Priceless!

Thanks for tolerating this super short post. I’ll be back! Meantime, go pet a cat. They’re great therapy. 🙂

 

This is the same picture with some editing:

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