Ten things

With Labor Day now but a memory, I feel it’s time to kick my blog back into high gear. And by high gear, I mean posting more than once a month.

Because, you know, I’m a writerly type. And writerly types write.



Okay, then. It’s been a while! I’m still trying to make my head stop spinning after the whirlwind that was my summer, which I truly can’t believe is over already. It’s true what they say – the older you get, the faster time passes. And with that in mind, here are some of the ways I spent my time this summer:

  1. Camping. A lot. Camping includes, but is not limited to, swimming, tubing, hiking, fishing, playing cards, roasting marshmallows, grilling, and touring maize mazes, nature centers, petting zoos, and museums.
  2. Not writing. I’m finally starting to feel the ideas…

Hibernation station

Holy buckets, is it cold out there! How cold is it?

It’s so cold that I passed a bunch of penguins on my way to work this morning. 😀

The worst part is that this is an improvement from the weekend. *sigh*

Meanwhile, I’m busy playing catch-up on pretty much everything after taking care of two sick kiddoes last week, so please excuse my probable absence here this week. In addition to catching up on stuff, I’m also in the midst of reading a fantastic new book. Have no fear – I’ll share my thoughts once I’m finished! It’s a book I’ve been looking forward to reading for some time now, so I suppose I’d better get back to it while I still have a few minutes to spare. 😉

Have a great day, everybody, and in case I don’t see ya, have a great rest of the week as well! 🙂

(c) 2016. All righrs reserved.

I’m back!

Howdy! Did you have a nice Christmas? Are you all recovered from the hustle and the bustle? Or could you have used another day in your weekend?

Lord knows I could have. I spent Christmas with a migraine of epic proportions, and the day after wasn’t a whole lot better (though it did involve a Star Wars marathon, and really the only thing better than that is a Star Trek marathon, or possibly a JAG marathon). Thank goodness I was feeling better yesterday; though I still wasn’t back to my usual self, it was a definite improvement over the previous two days.

I had planned to do a bunch of reading over the long weekend, and while I did do some reading, I didn’t do as much as I had planned. I’ll be making up for it this week, though, and I’ll be sharing my thoughts on what I’m reading right here, so stay tuned!

And now, to bed. It’s warm in bed. It’s not warm outside. Winter appears to have struck at last, and now I must go hide. 🙂

Has winter struck where you live yet?

(c) 2015. All rights reserved.

Photo 365 #326

We had a big weekend.  Saturday I did some garage saling while the older kids worked at a 5k and the younger ones had a play date, then we prepped for Cricket’s birthday party.  We prepped more yesterday morning and had a heck of a good time at the party yesterday afternoon.  Cricket’s godparents (and their spouses and new babies) both came, as did my aunt and uncle, my step-grandma, and my mother-in-law.  It was a houseful, but it was fun. 🙂

2015-06-28 19.25.48

Of course, all that fun can make for some tired little boys (okay, it makes for a tired mommy, too), and as five o’clock approached, Thumper finally lost the will to stay awake.  After announcing that he was going to get a book, he made a beeline for his room, returned with said book, then passed out on the couch (on top of said book).

I love that I’m raising readers.  Falling asleep with a book is a not-uncommon occurrence in my house, and it makes me smile every time I stumble upon a scene like this one. 🙂

Do your kids love to read?  What are some of their favorite books?

(c) 2015.  All rights reserved.

Photo 365 #115

One of my favorite pastimes is reading. I know, big surprise. 🙂 But seriously, I love books. And I love to read, to myself and to my kids. It’s the best way I know to pass on my passion for books.

The best part? It works.
Here’s Thumper reading George and Martha by James Marshall. I loved his books when I was little, and I’ve read them to each of my kids. This particular book is an omnibus edition of all the George and Martha stories, which I’d never seen before. Our last trip to the library yielded not only this treasure, but also James Marshall’s retelling of The Three Bears and a stack of Tomie dePaola books, another author I loved as a kid.

What were some of your favorite childhood books? Favorite authors? Share ’em down below!

(c) 2014. All rights reserved.

Photo 365 #61

As usual on my day off, I’ve been busy trying to get more than my normal 45 minutes of writing time squeezed in. I’m hard at work on my revision of The Price of Mercy, and I wanted to get some extra work done today.

imageBut the boys had other ideas. They wanted to spend lots of time with me, as Cricket put it. The two goals weren’t incompatible, or at least that’s what I thought. So I sat Cricket and Thumper down with some crayons and paper and told them tk color some pictures for Daddy while I worked on my story.

I spent the next ten minutes drawing “beautiful butterflies” for Thumper (who is very into The Very Hungry Caterpillar at the moment) and another five recording him as he read Little Blue Truck to me. It was too darn cute, and I love that he knows the story by heart.

Books are important, and I can’t imagine life without them. I’m glad that, even though he’s only three, my favorite little bunny shares my literary love. All my boys do, and I couldn’t be more proud. We are a family of bibliophiles here at Casa Kauffman, and nothing could make me happier.

Except, of course, for more bookshelves. One can never have too many bookshelves. 🙂

(c) 2014. All rights reserved.

Thoughts for the day

No, it's not blood.  Someone had fun with the ketchup while Mommy's back was turned.

No, it’s not blood. Someone had fun with the ketchup while Mommy’s back was turned.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading lately, mostly in a research vein as opposed to reading for fun (although I do enjoy my research).  Here are a few things I stumbled across today that really spoke to me:

Real, life-long security comes not from the barrel of a gun or from being able to spy on your fellow citizens like a Stasi informant; it comes with less harsh extremes of wealth and poverty and increased access to health care and education.  -David Byrne

Take a bunch of wolverines. Throw them into a roaring F5 tornado. That’s a toddler. It’ll tear through your home, shrieking and whirling about, scooping things up and depositing them elsewhere. It’ll lose things. It’ll destroy other things. It’ll change direction in the hair’s breadth of a moment — “I’m doing this no now I’m doing this other thing wait what’s that over there.”  -Chuck Wendig

Then last year, after my illness, turning 40 and most recently the death of a good friend, I realised that life is just too damn short NOT to be doing what I love. The planets kind of aligned, one of those epiphany moments.  -Sophie Tallis (emphasis mine)

All three articles are worth checking out in full (I truly related to Chuck Wendig’s post – I have two toddlers of my own, after all, and have felt the pain of a Duplo block embedded in my foot that he so hilariously references).  Happy Tuesday, y’all!

(c) 2014.  All rights reserved.

What a weekend!

How was everyone’s weekend?  I spent mine mostly offline, fighting a migraine and watching TV.  Lots and lots of TV.  But it was good, because some of it qualified as research for The Lokana Chronicles.  After last week’s writing class and my two-day Reign marathon and a bunch of Wikipedia-browsing, I’ve got a bunch of ideas for revisions (which I’d just resumed and will now have to go back over, but at least it’s only a chapter or two).  I decided the book needs to be split in half, so I’ve got a lot of work to do because, once I’m done revising, I’m going to have to figure out how to wrap up the first half so that it feels like a complete book and then do the same for the second half.

Oy.  Vey.

icyWe had some snow over the weekend that made for lovely inspiration, but I felt too miserable most of the weekend to do much about it.  I finally got a chance to sit down this noon and work on a new short story, but then the phone rang, and there went half my lunch hour.  Hopefully I can get some more writing done tonight – that would be awesome!  I’m still feeling a bit blah, though, so I guess we’ll see what happens.

In other news…

Are they real?

c. 50

c. 50 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Are you working through lunch again?” the man asked as I pulled out my notebook.

“Yeah, but this is fun work,” I replied, smiling.  I plopped the MS for The Lokana Chronicles down on the table.

He bent closer to inspect the title page.  “What’s this?  A novel?”

“Yep.  And here’s the sequel,” I said, removing the MS for Remnants from my purse.  It hit the table with a thud.

He took another look.  “You wrote these?”

My waitress joined us.  “You’re a writer?”


Her eyes widened.  “Wow!  I always see you writing in your little notebook…”

“This is usually what I’m working on,” I said, smiling again.

I told them a little about my work and the man asked if he was part of my story.  I said no.   Then he asked,