Category Archives: Writing

What’s Planned For March and April!

Happy March, everyone! It’s almost spring!

First of all, I wanted to let you know I’ve been using the deer tallow in soap! It’s incredible. I’ve swapped it out for the palm oil in my favorite recipe and adjusted the lye content. It makes a great bar of soap.

I will be making a hot-process batch later today (we’re out again), and I promise I will be taking pictures. I know I haven’t posted as much as I used to, and I am sorry. I’ve found that it takes a lot more time and focus to edit and prepare a book for print than it does to write the first draft. Pippa of Lauramore will be released April 24th, and I am buried in details–in a good way. But with homeschooling my kiddos at the same time, there isn’t a lot of time left for crafting.

Most of all, I miss sewing. Things should settle down toward the end of April, and I plan to dive into my craft to-do list.

Here’s a few things I hope to tackle in the next few months:

1. Pippa of Lauramore Inspired Recipe – I’ve mentioned a soap in my book (I’m obsessed with soaping, I know), and I will be creating that recipe to share with you! It will be a blend of masculine, earthy, woodsy essential oils.

2. Summer Dresses for Chelsea – The girl needs them. The ones she has are short. Way short.

3. Dragon Quilt for Weston – I still haven’t done this! Horrible, I know. I will get it finished.

4. Family Quilt – I need to machine quilt a very large family blanket my mother-in-law made my husband’s grandmother. I’m afraid I’ve been putting this off because it is so large, and I have no idea where I’m going to do this.

5. Sugar/Salt Scrubs – Spring is coming, and it will be time to exfoliate that dry winter skin!

6. Vegetable Garden? I don’t know if this is happening this year. We’ll see. I might just focus on some hardy herbs and call it good.

Have a great day! I’ll be posting that soap recipe tomorrow!

My Desktop Computer’s Near Death Experience

You know what’s fun? Losing the first 17,000 words of a novel you’re working on and almost all  your children’s baby pictures. My old desktop computer died today.

So I did what any rational eating-clean person would do. I broke down and ate a fun size Kit-Kat bar and a baby Tootsie Roll. It’s called willpower. I am the queen.

I did not have a diet soda, though. If you read this post, you’ll see what an accomplishment that is.

The good news is there are tons of people out there who are way more computer savvy than I am. After a few searches, I found out the horrible alarm going off when I tried to start my computer wasn’t just its death call–it was trying to communicate with me! That was lame. Sorry.

Anyway, the five alarms on startup and the black screen meant the cmos battery needed reset or replaced. It took lots of searches to figure out what in the world a cmos battery is, but we got it! It’s like a watch battery in your computer, and apparently it’s more important than it looks. We opened the computer up (terrifying), popped out the battery, waited about fifteen minutes, and then we put it all back together and plugged it in.

It worked! Oh, it worked! I can’t even tell you the joy.

So now I’ve done my version of open heart surgery on a computer.  I feel pretty good about that, even if all you high tech people out there are laughing at me right now.

Oh, and yes, I know I should have my pictures backed up. I have been talking about getting it done for years (once again, please refer to the title of my blog).

Pumpkin Coffee and an Author Challenge

This is a beautiful, wonderful day. I found decaf pumpkin spice coffee!!! I don’t drink much caffeine anymore–it makes me jittery. It is very difficult to find fun varieties in decaf, though. Let me share what varieties of decaf I can buy locally:

House Blend

Mmmmhmmm. That’s about it. Oh, sure–different companies label it with different names, but it’s all the same. I don’t do flavored creamers, so it means my coffee life has been pretty boring. I decided to try Amazon for some decaf pumpkin spice coffee, and I found one by Archer Farms. Target brand! After a quick search on their website, I discovered they had it stocked at my local Target! So exciting. And delicious. It’s so good.

Click the picture to see if your local Target stocks this yummy coffee!

Also, I’m participating in an Author’s challenge. Every time someone clicks this link, I get a vote! If I get the most votes in a month, I’ll be promoted on the mailing list. That would be pretty cool!

Have a great evening, and pick up some pumpkin spice coffee!

New Writing Blog

Over the last year I have become serious about my fiction writing, and with my first novel’s tentative publication date set for early spring of next year, I decided to start another blog for my writing. Occasionally I may post about my writing projects here, but for the most part I would like to keep my focus on crafts and homeschooling on Good Intentions.

If you would like to check out my new writing blog and learn a little more about my first novel, Pippa of Lauramore, you can go to

The Turmoil that is Editing a Manuscript

Editing stinks.

That is all.

No, really–it makes me crazy. I’m really happy with the novel I wrote back in July, but after staring at my own words for way too long, I’ve had some pretty emotional moments. More than once I’ve cried to my husband that it’s the worst lump of words ever written, and I should delete the whole thing.

He rolls his eyes, and then he tells me it’s fine. I start to breath again and realize he’s most likely right. I’ll be more convinced when he actually reads it. Darling–read the book, already!

I’m at that part where I’m almost ready for beta readers, and my step-sister is chomping at the bit to start.

I’m terrified.

What if she hates it? What if she thinks it’s stupid? What if she hates fantasy and she thinks I’m stupid?

Seriously, no one ever mentioned the mental breakdown a writer goes through during the editing process.

No matter where I’m at with my manuscript, two weeks into October I’m setting the whole thing aside to plot my NaNoWriMo novel. Yes–it’s NaNo time again!

If it’s your dream to write a novel, but you’ve never attempted it, I wholeheartedly urge you to give NaNo a try. Then after you’re done, you can tackle the editing monster, too.  And what fun that is!

Camp NaNoWriMo Word Goal Reached!

I reached my goal of 60,000 words tonight! I’m very excited, but I’m not done yet. I want my finished rough draft to be around 80,000 words, and I’m right on track to reaching that goal.  I should start regular posting in August. Sorry it’s been so quiet around here!


Camp NaNoWriMo – Week 2

Camp NaNo is just starting its second week today. So far I’m at 17,170 words–just a little above where I need to be right now. The holiday weekend killed my word count. I was able to squeeze in two thousand words on Saturday night, but I didn’t get anything done on Friday or Sunday.

Our church is hosting its yearly sports camp VBS this week, so the next four days will continue to be crazy. I’ll have the mornings and afternoons to write, so my goal this week is just to keep my head above water. I don’t want to fall behind.

My blog will probably be a little quiet this week, but I’ll try to post on Friday. Hope everyone had a happy 4th! 




Giant Snap Peas Taking over the Garden

It’s day 2 of Camp NaNoWriMi, and it’s going well. That’s an understatement, actually. It’s going fantastic. I’m at 9,329 words and counting,  and it’s been a pleasure to write. I outlined, outlined, and outlined some more with this project, and it’s paying off.  After reading an interesting interview with James Patterson, I even wrote a brief paragraph for each and every chapter in the book. Who hoo!!!

In other news, giant snap peas are taking over my garden. It’s terrifying, really. I’ve been picking them every other day, and I didn’t get out there yesterday since it was NaNo day 1.  This is what happens in one day (sorry for the blurry phone picture):

Giant Snap Peas
Burpee’s Super Snappy Snap Peas – Click the picture to go to their page on 

Do you see those things? They are unreal.  They are no good for eating fresh, so I’m going to parboil them and toss them in a freezer bag for steaming up with other veggies later.

Now if my little green tomatoes would just grow as quickly…

Fabulous Find – Free NaNoWriMo Workbook Downloads for Elementary, Middle, and High School!

I’ve been eating, sleeping, and breathing NaNoWriMo right now. Okay, not really, but I am doing a bunch to prepare my novel for July. I have a solid outline–possibly the sturdiest I’ve ever had going into a writing project. I have a timeline going, which is a first for me.  I have also read and watched tons and tons of articles and videos on NaNo, writing techniques, writing snacks, and…well, you get the point.

NaNoWriMo’s Young Writer’s Workbooks. Free Download!

In my various travels through NaNoWorld, I found these free writing workbook downloads at the Young Writer’s Program website. I browsed through them, and they are pretty awesome. The homeschool mom part of me, though enjoying summer vacation, was thrilled!

There’s three different levels: elementary, middle school, and high school.  Each one has the same basic information, but it’s tailored a little differently for each grade. The elementary workbook is definitely for older elementary children. I think third grade might be a touch young,  but fourth or fifth grade is just right.

You can also purchase a copy if you would prefer. It’s totally up to you.

I hope you and your kiddos find these useful!

Camp NaNoWriMo 2014

Remember that post I did on Thursday talking about planning things and actually getting them done?  Yeah,  it just tossed out the window–not organizing our school area, that must be done, but the bit about finishing up the novel I’m writing.

You see, I just found out Camp NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) is in July.  You can choose any project you want, and you set your own word count,  so it’s a lot more flexible than the original NaNoWriMo. I, however, feel the need to start on a fresh project for the month, so that’s what I will be doing.

I’ll be working on another young adult novel, and I’ve set my word count at 60,000 words.  So…see you in August!!! Kidding. Totally kidding.  Since I’m not schooling the children during the day (like I was in Novemeber), I should be able to keep up with my regular posting schedule.

If you’re thinking about participating, but you’re not sure if you can, do it! There is something truly wonderful about writing a book in a month.  Best of luck to the other participants out there, and maybe I’ll see you in my cabin!