Saturday, May 31, 2008

See ya in a couple weeks

School's out and it's time to go on vacation! So we are packing up and heading out to spend a couple weeks in Mexico. I won't be blogging while I'm gone. Don't miss me too much.

I will leave you with an interesting picture. I'm sure there's a story in there somewhere.

Monday, May 19, 2008

wonders of spring

I meandered through the back yard, admiring the irises, some in full bloom, others tipped with a purple promise of their future glory. I continued on, stepping into the shade of the back deck, and looked up. There, tucked between the support beams of the deck, was a nest. And on that nest, a robin, eyeing me warily.

She couldn't have been more than two feet away from my head. No doubt she was tensed, ready to flee if necessary. But she stayed, ever the protective mother, sitting on her eggs.

I walked away calmly, called the dogs to me, and went back into the house.

What fun to have a robin nesting on the deck again! Soon the eggs will hatch and I'll be able to watch my children peering through the deck boards, eager for a glimpse of those funny-looking, naked baby birds.

Don't you just LOVE spring?

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Ideas strike in the strangest places

This time it was in my kitchen as I glanced at a "googly eye" that had managed to find a place on my kitchen counter. Suddenly I had an idea for a craft--a bookmark, more specifically. It's a good thing I keep things like googly eyes handy most of the time. I immediately dashed down the stairs to the family room, grabbed the eyes out of one of the craft baskets, and set to work.

I made two samples. They turned out great and my kids loved them. My younger daughter even started making one of her own. Then I wrote up the directions and sent it all off to Highlights this afternoon.

This is my first craft submission to Highlights.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Ideas, Ideas...

Working at a school, close-up with the kiddos, is like standing in a rainstorm of ideas. Each little drop representing a character, or a character trait, or a plot, or a humorous moment.

Like the time when a third-grader threw-up IN THE KITCHEN during lunch. They had to shut the doors, clean everything up, throw out the spaghetti and make PBJ's to replace spaghetti on the menu. Then ANOTHER kid, moments later, threw up on the floor on his way to the table. It was all wonderful, disgusting chaos.

Of course there are the cute little kindergarteners and how much they seem to love all those silly counting stories/songs like Five Little Monkeys.

Fourth grade girls. Talk about drama!

Even the books the kids are reading (and loving!) give me ideas on the types of things I should be writing.

This list could be a lot longer, but I don't want to give too much away. I guess it's official that I need an actual "idea notebook."

Oh, I think I have a blank one in my closet!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Submitting. It's been a while!

I have been so busy lately that I've hardly sent anything out since the beginning of the year. My submissions record for 2008 has less than ten entries. What a shame!

But I've got good news. I've done a lot of digging the past few days (through publishers' guidelines) and sent TWO stories out yesterday. I sent "Hello, Little Red" to Dawn Publications (I hope my hubby remembered to weigh the envelope before he mailed it). I also sent the first three chapters of "Lillian and the Shadows of Krahd" to Handprint Books.

I'm not stopping there. I've got a few more publishers on my list, so hopefully I'll fatten up my pathetic little submissions record in no time.

Oh, and more news:

Corey and I received a rejection from Tricycle Press for "Over the Top." BUT, the good news is that the editor said she would be interested in seeing more work from us. So, we're hoping THE AGENT will send her "Grace's Big Chase."

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Unexpected acceptance

I received a happy surprise in the mail today--an acceptance from DevoZine for a poem I sent them a few months ago. I had forgotten all about it! It was a nice surprise. The title of the poem is "Downpour" and it will appear in the Nov/Dec issue. DevoZine is a devotional magazine for teens, published by The Upper Room Ministries.