Monday, January 30, 2017

Let's talk about hockey a little bit more...

So All-Star Weekend for the first. I didn't get involved in all the social media outlets, listening to mic'd up players, etc, etc, etc... I watched the skills competition on Saturday and the games on Sunday.

I think the star of the skills competition was young Ryker Kesler, son of the Anaheim Ducks Ryan Kesler, who took dad's second shootout shot and scored on one of the leagues best goalies, Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens. For real. I think it was a legit score as six-foot-something Price didn't know how to defend against his four-foot-tall opponent.

Now Tyler was only in one skills competition. He didn't win though. And the Central Division team on which he played completely combusted and got their asses kicked by the Pacific Division team 10 to 3. Not sure why is was such a rout, so I didn't get to see much of him.

On the other hand, Sidney Crosby defended his honor against up-and-coming Auston Matthews in the accuracy shooting competition and scored a goal during the game.

In other news, I mad great progress on my book revisions and might just make my deadline.

How was your weekend?

Friday, January 27, 2017

Let's talk about hockey...

Regular professional hockey is on a four-day hiatus for the annual All-Star Break. I've never watched one before, but I'm excited to this year because my favorite hockey player, Tyler Seguin, was selected as the lone player from the Stars.

Getting selected is pretty awesome considering there are thirty-one teams in the NHL and I don't think they send one guy from every team. Some teams have two or three players chosen. So yeah. Tyler is one of the high scoring players in the league--NHL players get individual points for scoring goals as well as assists on goal.

There was some sort of image creating contest/event (#HockeyGoesHolleywood) and these were posted to the STARS Facebook page the other day--they are not my work--not claiming that at all. But they were fun to see.

Needless to say, I'll be spending several hours this weekend in front of the TV or my PC watching the All-Star Break events.

Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

My brain has turned into a bee hive...

There's so much going on in there right now that I'm having a hard time accomplishing anything but making lists. Which isn't a bad thing, because once all that stuff is on paper, I don't have to hold onto it in my brain any longer. And then maybe I can make more things happen

But I'm tired already, thinking of all the things that need to happen. Plus when those things happen, there might be more things to do...

Luckily, my day job works on a ticket system. I get a ticket on my schedule for things I have to do, which is somewhat "listy" and helpful for me.

Anyway, it's Wednesday and it's time to prioritize and get started on some of the "things." :)

Hope you're having a great week so far. Talk to you soon...

Monday, January 23, 2017

Strive for the Next Level...

Friday I mentioned the struggle of getting out of bed and going to the gym. For what it's worth, I'm on track still. :)

My new motto has become "the next level"--reaching for, striving for, getting to--whatever. Not only at the gym but with my writing. And DH is working at that as well in his business, so I'm trying to step up at work as well.

This past Saturday was writers group and, as usual, I spent a lovely day with some of my favorite people on the planet. One of my writer friends mentioned an audiobook she was listening to about the 10 myths of publishing. I scribbled a note for later and later I looked it up.

Turns out the myths are also available via blog by the same guy, so I tucked into the first myth, and then the next, and the next, and, well, by last night I'd read all twenty-some-odd that are available (three series, two done, one in progress), and every single thing the author said made sense. Many of his myths resonated with me for other reasons, but I'll be going back through the series to re-read and make note of his suggestions, decide what I want from my writing and -- you got it -- take it to the next level.

N--you know who you are--you need to email me, my friend. Turns out this author is married to another blogger you refer to me often. Which makes sense because they think in tandem.

Needless to say, I have a lot of pondering and then a lot of work to do.

I can see now that life is not slowing down any time soon on any front. I'm gonna have to pace myself, and like the title of this blog says and I believe whole-heartedly--there is a time for everything.

Hope you had a great weekend. Mine was enlightening and inspiring.

Friday, January 20, 2017

To gym or not to gym...

That is the question every morning at 3:40AM. Yep, that's what time I get up to go to the gym.

I've been okay going every other day. I haven't had any issues making the decision to roll out of bed.

But here's the thing, I know I have to take it to the next level. I hit my lowest (weight) low again and the only way to get under it is to push myself harder at the gym. Which is not a problem once I'm there. The problem is getting there more often.

I've been telling myself that instead of every other day, I would start two going two days in a row, with one day off, and it's taken me two weeks to make that happen. Last night, I opted for extra pretzels before bed because I told myself I was going to the gym this morning.

This morning, when the alarm went off...yeah, I was super warm and cozy, and I could have easily rolled over and slept like a baby until the next alarm. But then I though about those extra pretzels and the smorgasbord of delicious food that will tempt me tomorrow (it's writers group day and we meet in a restaurant), and I forced myself out of bed.

Once I'm up and moving, I'm fine. It's just that initial decision, that slide out of warmth into chilly that's difficult.

But I won today.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

So hockey's my new fangirl love...

Who knew listening to or watching a hockey game could be so stressful??

I mean, I know for the players it is, obviously, because they're trying to win the game and keep the opposing team from scoring. It is for the coaches when the team is taking a few on the chin...

But for a fan--or perhaps I should say a fan for any given can be nerve-racking too.

So I'm fan-girling the Stars because they're my home team and because the two faces of the franchise, Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn, are some pretty nice faces (and bodies) indeed.

(Tyler Seguin on the left, Jamie Benn on the right.)
(We don't know nor care about the guy in the middle.)

I also follow the Pittsburgh Penguins because that's Sonshine's team, so, you know. And Sidney Crosby isn't hard on the eyes either.

So let's take the Stars. Now they've been having a rough season, no rhyme or reason to their wins or losses. They beat teams they shouldn't and lose to teams whose asses they should have kicked. So, yeah, it's hard to know while you're watching or listening which way it's going to go. I know they feel way worse about the losses than I do, but man, as a fan, you just can't predict when they're gonna start falling apart. So you sit clenched, waiting for it all to implode because usually it's just a matter of time...

Now let's talk about the Pens--the 2016 Stanley Cup winning Pens. Yeah, them.

When I watch or listen to a game, all is fine. I don't get stressed out or freaked out even if they give up a goal or two, because they've proven over and over this season (and previous one's I'm sure) that they can come back--and they do. Just the other night, they were down by 2 going into the second period. Then Washington scored making the deficit 3-0. And guess what happened? They answered back with five goals before the Capitols could score again. They won the game 34 seconds into overtime.

So yeah big difference in how I feel watching these teams. Go Stars! (They did pull out a win last night...)

Anyway, Happy Hump Day!

Monday, January 16, 2017

And so it begins...contest and writing...contest and writing...contest and writing...

Well, technically it began in November, but judging began this past Sunday. Meaning lots and lots of emails to send out. Scores to receive and log. In a continuous cycle until the beginning of April. Getting started is the busiest part because you're sending books out to all judges. Once that first blast is complete, then it slows down because everyone reads at different speeds. I'll might get a day or two of a reprieve, but then the score sheets will start to trickle in, which means sending another book to those judges. And so on and so on until all books have gotten the minimum number of scores.

I finally got my writing groove back. Well, I say that, but really I forced myself to do what needed to be done, whatever it was. What I mean is that I created a new document for book three and copied and pasted chapters in, one at a time, reading through them as I went and fixing whatever needed to be fixed. The first seven / eight chapters were fine, which I knew, but things started getting a little more messed up around chapter ten. So nose to the grindstone. Read and fix, read and fix, read and fix.

Anyway, it worked. I made really great progress last weekend. My self-imposed deadline for getting this book in order is January 28th, two weeks from this past Saturday. I'm not talking ready-for-the-editor finished, but all pieces in place even if they're a little rough around the edges. Then I'll go back with the sandpaper and smooth those edges.

My time is going to be very precious for the next couple of months, but it's good training for publishing three books a year. That's a goal for 2018 and beyond.

Hope you had a relaxing or productive weekend!

Ode to fog!

I love fog. I love driving around in it and the eerieness of it. Early Sunday and early today, we experienced really great fog--not the kind we normally get--rather thin and easily dissipating. But really thick, very-low-visibility fog. There was a patch on the way to the gym this morning that was so thick I could only see about five feet in front of me. But, as long as I could see the lane lines, all was good. It even thickened up over at the gym between the time I went in and the time I came out.

It was thick enough both mornings to really block out the radiating light from parking lots and large stores that I can usually pinpoint half a mile down the road at least. Not so much yesterday and today. They couldn't be seen until you were right up on them.

Anyway, it's been a fun little adventure, at least for me driving around. One of our employees wouldn't agree as he dislikes fog with a passion. It really spooks him. And it's so thick, really like pea soup today, and all over the Metroplex that it wouldn't surprise me if he had an issue getting to work this morning. :)

Hope you had a good weekend and here's to a productive week.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Made it through the week...

Even with my daily longer-than-normal list of things to do each day and despite crossing off the bulk of those items, I'm not feeling like I'm making progress.

Last night I sat down to revise for a minimum of an hour. When I looked at the clock in my office when I was done, I thought 'wow, I worked two hours!' It felt like two hours, but it turns out it was only an hour. :( The clock in my office is an hour off... It really did feel like two hours.

Maybe I'm just tired because I've had so many things to accomplish (and done so) and I started back to the gym after two weeks of not going.

But I'm definitely happy it's Friday even though Saturday will probably be busy with writer group stuff. I'm looking forward to Sunday. And I'm hoping that next week I'll be feeling a little more energetic.

On a more sporty note...the STARS won last night and my favorite STAR, Tyler Seguin, was chosen for the NHL All Star Game. This makes his fourth time being selected. Way to go boys!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

American Fun/Interesting Facts

Crazy busy, but didn't want to miss a day. This list comes from here.

#1 The amount of cement that China used from 2011 to 2013 was greater than the total amount of cement that the United States used during the entire 20th century.

#2 In more than half of all U.S. states, the highest paid public employee in the state is a football coach.

#3 It costs the U.S. government 1.8 cents to mint a penny and 9.4 cents to mint a nickel.

#4 Almost half of all Americans (47 percent) do not put a single penny out of their paychecks into savings.

#5 In 2014, police in the United States killed 1,100 people.  During that same year, police in Canada killed 14 people, police in China killed 12 people and police in Germany didn’t kill anyone at all.

#6 The state of Alaska is 429 times larger than the state of Rhode Island is.  But Rhode Island has a significantly larger population than Alaska does.

#7 Alaska has a longer coastline than all of the other 49 U.S. states put together.

#8 The city of Juneau, Alaska is about 3,000 square miles in size.  It is actually larger than the entire state of Delaware.

#9 When LBJ’s “War on Poverty” began, less than 10 percent of all U.S. children were growing up in single parent households.  Today, that number has skyrocketed to 33 percent.

#10 In 1950, less than 5 percent of all babies in America were born to unmarried parents.  Today, that number is over 40 percent.

#11 The poverty rate for households that are led by a married couple is 6.8 percent.  For households that are led by a female single parent, the poverty rate is 37.1 percent.

#12 In 2013, women earned 60 percent of all bachelor’s degrees that were awarded that year in the United States.

#13 According to the CDC, 34.6 percent of all men in the U.S. are obese at this point.

#14 The average supermarket in the United States wastes about 3,000 pounds of food each year.

#15 Right now, more than 200 million people around the planet are officially considered to be unemployed.  Meanwhile, approximately 20 percent of the garbage that goes into our landfills is food.

#16 There is a city in Bangladesh called Dhaka where workers are paid just one dollar for every 1,000 bricks that they carry.  Meanwhile, the “inactivity rate” for men in their prime working years in the United States is hovering near record high levels.

#17 According to one recent survey, 81 percent of Russians now have a negative view of the United States.  That is much higher than at the end of the Cold War era.

#18 Montana has three times as many cows as it does people.

#19 The grizzly bear is the official state animal of California.  But no grizzly bears have been seen there since 1922.

#20 One recent survey discovered that “a steady job” is the number one thing that American women are looking for in a husband, and another survey discovered that 75 percent of women would have a serious problem dating an unemployed man.

#21 According to a study conducted by economist Carl Benedikt Frey and engineer Michael Osborne, 47 percent of the jobs in the United States could soon be lost to computers, robots and other forms of technology.

#22 The only place in the United States where coffee is grown commercially is in Hawaii.

#23 The original name of the city of Atlanta was “Terminus“.

#24 The state with the most millionaires per capita is Maryland.

#25 There are more than 4 million adult websites on the Internet, and they get more traffic than Netflix, Amazon and Twitter combined.

#26 86 percent of men include “having children” in their definition of success.  For women, that number is only 73 percent.

#27 One survey of 50-year-old men in the U.S. found that only 12 percent of them said that they were “very happy”.

#28 The United States has 845 motor vehicles for every 1,000 people.  Japan only has 593 for every 1,000 people, and Germany only has 540 for every 1,000 people.

#29 The average American spends more than 10 hours a day using an electronic device.

#30 48 percent of all Americans do not have any emergency supplies in their homes whatsoever.

#31 There are three towns in the United States that have the name “Santa Claus“.

#32 There is actually a town in Michigan called “Hell“.

#33 There are 60,000 miles of blood vessels in your body.  If they were stretched out in a single line, they could go around the planet more than twice.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Feeling blue...

I dropped Sonshine off at the airport early Sunday morning...and yes I cried. Just a little. I hadn't expected to, but this years' visit seemed shorter and we didn't get any Mom/Sonshine alone time. But he did get to spend time with DH as well as one of his HS buddies, so that was definitely nice for all of us to just hang out.

We did go to a Stars game, so that was a fun experience to share with him. He is partially to blame for my newfound love of hockey so it seemed like a fitting activity. :) If only the STARS had won...

And so the real new year begins... Sonshine is back where he belongs (for now) and my leisurely start to the new year is over. It's time to get going on all my waiting endeavors.

Friday, January 6, 2017

Time Management

By the number of late and missed blog posts over the last two months, you might think I already have a problem with this. I don't really. I had plenty of time in October and November. December was a bit hectic, but I still had time. The blog just slipped my mind with all the other stuff going on.

But the holidays have come and gone (mostly. We'll celebrate Christmas with Sonshine tomorrow and then put him on a plane early Sunday morning.). The new year has started (obviously) and it's when the bulk of my duties to my writing group happen.

I've started a list of all the things I have to accomplish or work on, on a daily or weekly basis. I'll have carve out time for DH and for myself, as well as make time for my various tasks. It's going to be a long couple of months and I must have a grasp on everything so I can stay sane and on top of all my duties.

I'm recalling a similar blog lament last year. :) I thought once I got through March, everything would slow down. They slowed down some, but not as much as I was expecting or hoping. This year I have no such fantasies. Yes, things will taper off, but the next batch of things to accomplish (you know, publishing four books in June and everything that has to get done to make that happen...) will be waiting, so maybe I can look forward to a semi-relaxing summer...

How do you manage your time and tasks?

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Last 2016 Goals Update... And 2017 Goals

Honestly, nothing much has changed from the 3rd quarter update, so I'm not gonna rehash anything.

Let's just move onto my goals for this year...

1) The biggest goal, which has been in place since this past summer, is to publish some books. Six to be exact...four in June for my birthday, one 30 days later, and another 60 days after that. Three are complete, two are done but need serous revisions, one is in the planning stages. I need to spend some time on book three...and book five...but otherwise, I'm on track.

2) This has been on this list for at least two years, if not three... Reach 120lbs. In actuality, my goal is somewhere between 120 and 125. I finally broke a plateau I'd been stuck on for a long time, so as long as I keep on keepin' on at the gym, I think I'll finally accomplish this one.

3) I'm going to put walking the dog on here again because I need to, for both of us. She definitely benefit from it and it'll do me some good as well. I guess I should stipulate frequency, huh? Otherwise, I could make one trek around the block and call her done. :) So let's say three times a week...

4) Last year, I claimed it'd take money and cleaning lady to get my house cleaner. I didn't come up with the cash, so the house only got cleaner when I got motivated. Motivation only came upon me a couple of times. But I think I want to get back into my cleaning routine... Although I am stating for the record that this won't come to pass until probably March. I'm juggling too many things in January and February.

5) Along with the house cleaning, I want to cleanup and then setup and organize my writing/craft room so that I can work in there. I hope this'll include adding a work space as well as containers and such for having my stuff sorted and handy when the mood strikes. I did start on the cleaning on New Years Day.

6) Part of reaching my goal weight and being generally healthier as well as helping DH on his weight loss journey will be to cook better meals. Of course, money is a factor in what kind of meals can be prepared, and things should be less tight this year, so more protein and green veggies for us. If you have any good/simple/easy recipes, please share.

Reading is no longer a goal. Frankly, it's a way of life for me, so it's not going on the list. At the moment, these are the major things I can think of. Should anything else occur, I'll add it.

What about you?

Care to share your goals for 2017?

Monday, January 2, 2017

Marching Band Monday

Happy New Year, too!!! Hope you had a super New Year's Eve. As usual, we were selling fireworks.

Since Sonshine, aka Marching Band Boy, is home for the (belated) holidays, I'm going to share a video of one his programs from high school... They're not as good/polished as the previous two bands we saw, but it still takes some skill for these kids to play and march and perform, and I'm still incredibly proud of my kid.