If you do what you have always done, you will get what you have always had.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


I found a fun little meme at PBW; she was tagged by Jordan. One click later, I found it at Jean's. By that point, my mantra was, "I'm not gonna play. I'm not gonna play..."

Then I got to Val, and she tagged me! So now I gotta play or the meme fairy will run off with Walter the Muse*, who is supposed to be on duty until Sword and Scabbard is finished. He's a slacker; it doesn't take much to distract him. So, here are the rules:

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
4. Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged, and to read your blog.

I'll tell you right off that bat that I'm going to jump on the bandwagon with Jean and PBW and not formally tag anyone, but if you choose to play along, leave me a comment so I can come read.

My odd facts?

1. Eric and I dated a month before we got engaged. We were engaged 13 months before we married. Some members of my family secretly agreed we'd last no more than five years; Eric's friends gave us two. It will be twenty in September.

2. My mother nagged me for two years to get me to look into homeschooling. Once I finally started doing my own research, which I shared with Eric, it took us less than two weeks to decide to do it, and this is our sixth (and probably final) year. We had an understanding that homeschooling was on a year-to-year basis with God making the decision.

3. Finishing lengthy projects is my Achilles heel. The fact that I'm still working on Sword and Scabbard amazes me.

4. I'm a serious introvert, but you'd never know to look at me. Crowds sap my energy in no time flat, and I tend to be 'invisible' unless I'm trying to be seen.

5. Once upon a time, I was a redhead. Then I had kids, and the red faded. I didn't realize how brown (and gray) my hair was by the time we moved here until I henna'd it a couple weeks ago, and now everyone is telling me I look like a real redhead! *L*

6. The post office doesn't raise rates until I have enough stamps in the old denomination to send Christmas cards, and it's not Christmas. I suppose I should be flattered that a nation-wide agency is plotting against me, but somehow I'm not.

7. Some days, I just have to sing, and it drives my kids crazy. I start to say something, and the tune with the perfect cadence for my words pops into my head, and I sing what I was going to tell them. They've had 'Go clean your bedroom' with "Ride of the Valkyries"; 'You need to do your homework first' with "Moon River"; don't get me started on the Veggie Tales songs I've plagarized to get my point across. When I'm driving alone and get behind a slow person, I break out my own version of "Turn, Turn, Turn": 'You're in my way, turn, turn, turn, and making me late, turn, turn, turn. You're really getting on my last nerve.' See why it drives my kids crazy?

8. I tend to be long-winded. I can't help it; one sentence just looks so sad and desolate all by itself. Besides, I'm a writer; stringing words together like a cranberry garland is what I do.

*I was going to link to the post where I said specifically that Walter Mitty is my muse, but apparently I was in Walter Mitty mode when I wrote it! Here's the post where I realized it, and if you type 'Walter Mitty' in the search bar, you'll find the rest. Y'all should tell me when my references don't make sense!


Monday, May 07, 2007

Not the best way to boost word count

I worked for an hour this afternoon on Sword and Scabbard, and I felt pretty good about what I'd gotten, but I felt like I needed to think through an argument before I went on. Knowing I was coming back to it, I left the laptop on and came downstairs to do some laundry, plant the garden, and format the blog entries to send to Grandma.

That's where I got into trouble.

A couple of years ago, we bought a wireless keyboard and mouse for the laptop. It worked so well, we bought one for the desktop, too. Everything was fine until we installed the wireless internet in the house and I had to move my desk upstairs to pick up the signal. It also put me in range for the keyboards to 'talk' to each other. I figured out the problem last week; I was working, Vicky was downstairs e-mailing a friend, and her message over-rode what I was typing. We had a little giggle, and I unplugged the keyboard until she was done.

Today I forgot to unplug the keyboard. When I edited the letter to Grandma, I effectively 'Selected all' in my document upstairs and deleted the whole thing. 96,000 words--gone. I frantically CTRL-Z'ed trying to get it back but it was too far gone. It was only by the grace of God that I'd backed up to my thumb drive Friday when I wrote, so I really only lost today's work, but that was over 1,200 words.

I waited until after we'd had dinner and run errands, and then I got a glass of wine, went upstairs, and reconstructed it. Of course I counted all the words again; it wasn't an exact reconstruction, but even if it had been I still would have typed everything twice. It did help me play catch-up from the weekend I took off, but it was too frustrating to do on a regular basis! I've asked for a new ergonomic keyboard--either not wireless or a brand that won't talk to our current one--for Mother's Day.

The moral of the story is to back up in multiple places. E-mail it to your mom if you have to. Do what you have to do to protect the work, and plan for emergencies. If your house burns down or gets flattened by a tornado, you don't want to have all of your work gone, too.

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So much for being observant

One of my New Year's resolutions was to get better at communicating with loved ones far away. I started printing and mailing blog entries to my Grandmother since she doesn't have Internet access, and it was just today that I realized how big the blog has become.

I was behind, as usual, so I started copying and pasting into Word and not paying enough attention. Thank goodness I edit the format because that's when I discovered I'd copied and pasted some of March 2006 instead of 2007 into my document. I hate when I do that, but I love when I catch it before anyone else does! Perhaps I've had a bit too much caffeine just now...