Saturday, December 14, 2013

Still Around

Whew - is it really December 14th already? It's been a while, hasn't it? Well, as you can see, I'm still here, just not as here as I used to be.

November was a busy month for me, between Thanksgiving and NaNo - I didn't see much in the way of sunlight, so to speak. I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday - mine was bittersweet this year. Before we bought our house, my husband and the kids and I spent Thanksgiving at my mom's house. But after we bought the house, my mom very gladly handed off the holiday to me and up until she got sick, we did Thanksgiving together. And although she'd been too sick to do Thanksgiving since 2010, this was the first one without her entirely. Since her death, I'd gone back and forth over whether or not I even wanted to host Thanksgiving - my mother in law and sister in law both offered in my place.

But in the end, I decided that I wanted a houseful of people and I wanted to be able to drink as much wine as I wanted without having to worry about driving home - so I did Thanksgiving. And as the day drew nearer, I have to admit, it left me feeling a little blue - as much as I looked forward to having my husband's family there, I was dreading the empty chair.

When my brother and I cleaned out my mom's house three years ago, I inherited my mother's china and crystal, which had been my grandparents' wedding gifts. I boxed it up and stored in my attic. This year, I decided that I wanted to use it - with some hesitation because it's 80 years old and what if something got broken??? - so I went into the attic and brought everything down, washed it (by hand. Can't put 80 year old china in the dishwasher) and as I dried and stacked everything, I felt better. And when I set the table on Thanksgiving, seeing all that beautiful china and delicate crystal made me feel like my mom and grandparents were with me, which made me smile.

The firsts are the worst - and I'm looking toward Christmas with the same mixed feelings. I don't know if it will get better, but at least it can't really get any worse.

As for NaNo, I banged out over 100k words in about sixteen days - so it was a success. At one point, I was averaging 12k words a day. It was another Sebastiano book and it just sort of wrote itself. Now, I'm in the process of revising it (along with Rafe's story, which should be done and ready for subbing around the beginning of the year.) I decided to do NaNo this year because since my mom died, I hadn't really felt much like writing anything, and I didn't care if I ever wrote another word. I thought NaNo might be just what I needed to reignite that spark and it worked. I have the basic plot for another Sebastiano book, one I plan on writing sometime over the winter. It felt wonderful to not only be writing again, but to actually be excited about the story I was telling, so I won on several different levels where NaNo is concerned.

I haven't decided when (or even if, which I probably shouldn't be admitting) I'll get back to regular blogging. I know it won't be before the new year - I'm concentrating on family and current projects right now - but I will pop in from time to time.

Until then, I'd like to wish everyone who celebrates a very Merry Christmas (or a happy holiday, whichever holiday that might be) and Happy New Year!

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