Catching Up

So...I know I said I was done with the book, but there were a few scenes that just kept nagging at me, so I went back one last time. (Nothing new, trust me.) And I did it! I finished the book! And it's for sale! I'll post where to buy it once it's up on all the sites. I'm SOOO excited!!!

Lately, I've felt like it's almost impossible to catch up with everything. There's always my main work, of course, though I only have about two more months until summer. I don't usually count down the days, but I have to admit, I am this year. Only because I will have time to do some of the other things on my list. School/Homework, spending time with family and friends, catching up on Once Upon A Time and a few other series I watch, Taekwondo, and writing. Specifically finishing the new book I'm working on.

I guess you do have to inevitably work on another book as soon as you finish one. Except, my problem is trying to think about one book at a time. As I was finishing up Finding Home Again, I couldn't help but to think about the next story. It's hard not to think about my next story as I'm working on my current one. Especially at the stage I was with on the first book. So close to the end; almost done. I mean, DONE. Not, okay yeah, I want to go over it one more time. Just done. But I buckled down and drove through it, and it's really finished.

I just recently took a short trip during my spring break to my aunt and uncle's new farm. They moved to northern Missouri, and I was excited to see the new place. I thought, since Traveler's Farm was so important to me--I set an entire story there, after all--I was going to be a little apprehensive about going to the new farm, but I wasn't. It was great.

Their new house is a bit smaller, but they are in the process of adding a mudroom extension to the house. Their garage is not attached, and they don't want to go through another winter with that. I wouldn't want to go through ANY winter there at all, mudroom or not. I like my southern California weather.

My aunt and I did a lot of sight seeing. The Liberty Memorial, some museums, Union Station. And we certainly rode her horses. I got Roo, a GIANT horse. Her indoor arena is amazing, especially since it was really cold at night, but that didn't bother us because we were inside. Though, it was a bit nerve-wrecking when Roo took off into a gallop. Never gone that fast on a horse, so I was surprised I managed to stay on--having fallen off a couple of times a few years ago when turning and, yes, standing still. It was my fault he took off because I tensed up, but my aunt had told me to run him into the wall, and he'd stop. So I did, and he did, and I didn't fall off. Yay!

Her trainer came one day, and I didn't get to meet her before my aunt's lesson because I had gone for a short walk with one of the dogs, and, you know, their farm is rather large. So when I first laid eyes on this lady, she was well into the lesson. And she was very intense. Intimidated me, that's for sure. Then, as soon as the lesson was over, she was the sweetest lady you could ever meet. I told some of my aunt's neighbors that it was kind of nice having someone yell at her during a riding lesson for a change. Ha! Take that.

Here are some pictures.

The Liberty Memorial

This is Bullseye on top of the tower. A while ago, before I went on a trip to visit my family for my birthday, my friend Kristy bought him for me as sort of a Flat Stanley kind of thing. We started that during one of our many Geology camping trips with the college we went to, and have continued it, as you can see. Bullseye has been my traveling buddy ever since, and he pops up in my pictures every now and then. (You should have seen the look on one of the worker's faces when my aunt took Bullseye and set him down when we were somewhere else. I guess she didn't see very many adults just randomly place stuffed animals to pose for a picture.)

It was actually by luck we went up to the top of the tower. When we first got outside, we walked around and then went into a little side-museum up there. When we came back out, we were going to go back down to the floor level when I noticed there was a door open to the tower. And when we walked over to check it out, we noticed that there was an elevator that took people up to the top. So we were definitely going up. Here's a picture of the elevator shaft.

This is one of her dogs, Kiska. I absolutely LOVE her eyes!

And who doesn't like a deer skull?

The awesome indoor arena. With a stereo system and mirrors!

I definitely can't leave out Georgie. He's very much like my uncle--doesn't ever want to grow up.

The best parts were when my aunt and I sat down to have our famous talks. We certainly don't agree on everything, but she's so intelligent and insightful. I sometimes feel like if I can just vent to her, all my problems will be solved. There have been times and situations I was acting like my head was on backwards, and I could always count on her to look at things logically and practically.

(I don't know if she notices it, or will even admit to it, but she looks A LOT like her mom, AKA my grandma. Even her voice sometimes sounds like my grandma. There are certain words she pronounces the same, and for a moment, I can imagine I'm talking to my grandma again. My grandma's voice is one of the things I miss the most. And her hands. She had small, soft hands. But every time I look at my thumbs, I can sort of see hers, since during my last visit before she passed away, I was holding her hand and when I looked down, I noticed we had the same thumbs. I had actually been wondering where my hands came from because they look nothing like my parents. It was nice to see I had something of my grandma's.)

I actually didn't have as much writing time as I was planning on during my trip, since we were playing tourist so much. But I still was able to get my book done. I thought it was kind of funny how I started the book in Missouri, and I ended up finishing the book in Missouri, too. I suppose it's fitting, in a way. Shows how much work and time was put into it.

When I was finishing it, I was working late into the night. My aunt and uncle had long since gone to bed, and I had about another twenty pages or so. I got through the first half fairly quickly, but once I got to the last chapter, I stalled for some reason. I didn't get it! Didn't I just want this book to be done??? I did, but at the same time, I realized it meant just that. I would finally be done, and I would soon move on to the next story I was itching to work on. I would say goodbye to working with the characters. Sort of like I was leaving Missouri and going home. I have to admit I got a little emotional after I read the last sentence.--I actually read the last chapter about five times, since I wanted it to be as best as I could make it.--And when I was done, I sat back and just stared at my laptop screen for a moment. At first, I didn't really believe I was done. I had been working on the story for so long, there were times it didn't seem like it would ever get finished. But there it was. Done.

The next morning, my aunt was pretty excited, and I sort of felt like I never wanted to write another story again. Like I didn't have enough Writing Energy left. Of course, that only lasted for about three hours, after I had breakfast and we were in the car, driving to another site. And something caught my eye, and I thought of a good idea for the next story, and there I was, scribbling down my idea before I forgot it.

I do have a deadline for the story I'm working on now, and I am going to get it done by then. I will. In fact, as soon as I post this, I'm going to look over my notes.

I'll leave you with this picture of Bullseye waiting for the airplane.