Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!


I just wanted to pop in and wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! I hope you are all happy and safe!  I will officially be back in January. :)


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Being Thankful


As Thanksgiving draws nearer, I wanted to express my gratitude for a few of the blessings I have in my life. While I'm thankful for these people/things year round, it's nice to take a moment and really think about them. First, my husband. We've been married a little over six years now. He was my first boyfriend (I didn't date much, like, ever). He fell in love first. It took me a little longer because I wanted to be sure he was the right one. I had planned to date for at least a year before getting married. We dated a total of 5 1/2 months. Best decision I ever made. He works harder than anyone else I know at a job he doesn't like, for money that doesn't always come when we need it to. We've struggled financially throughout our whole marriage, but he is always optimistic that things will get better. He treats me like a queen even though I don't always act like one. Someday, when we're finally blessed with children, he will be an awesome father. I love him more every day.

My parents and siblings. My parents are the best example of what a happy marriage looks like. They recently celebrated their 41st anniversary. They continue to love, support, celebrate, and pray for, all their children and their families. I love them so much! My three brothers and one sister are the best siblings a girl could ask for. We didn't always get along growing up, but we're really close now. My brothers are pretty hilarious, my sister is beautiful. They're each married to a great person. And my niece and nephews are adorable. I love my family!

My talents. I think my earliest talent is playing the piano. I started when I was nine. My teacher was a neighbor down the street (shout out to the Linders!). For the first few years, I hated practicing. It was hard and I thought counting the notes was stupid. Now, I wouldn't trade any of it for anything. I love being able to sit at a piano and play whatever I want. Music is a blessing. Next came art. I didn't really get into art until Jr. High, and didn't get remotely good until high school. I'm still not as good as I'd like to be, though I continue to learn new things and how to use different mediums. I still have a goal to create manga. I've got a long way to go. Finally, writing. I've written about writing before. It's something I have to do. The ideas that come to my brain aren't there just for fun. Again, I'm not as good as I want to be, which is why I'll never stop doing it.

My religion. I owe everything I have to my Heavenly Father and his son, Jesus Christ. I know for a fact that I would not be the person I am without Them. I'm actually afraid to think about the kind of person I'd be if I didn't have Them in my life. Despite difficulties and the scary things going on around us, I have faith that everything will be okay.

I'm thankful for so many more people and things. I'd be typing for hours to include them all, but I have Christmas presents to make. I'll be taking a break from blogging for most of the rest of the year, though I will pop in around Christmas or if I have something extraordinary to share.



Saturday, November 21, 2015

On My List


I thought it would be fun to share my Christmas list. I know I won't be getting most of these with our tight little budget, but I can always use the same list next year.

1) A watch, small and silver. I don't do gold.
2) Boots. I have several pairs already, but I would never say no to more. I'm thinking of branching out into colors like blue and red.
3) Shirts, blouses, sweaters. I generally like to pick these out myself, and I would get them from my local thrift stores. Which reminds me, there's a new store just up the street that I have to check out...
4) An electric frying pan. I have a square one. I think I'd like a rectangle one as well.
5) Scarves. Along with boots, scarves are my favorite cold season apparel. And sweaters.
6) Any Disney or Pixar movie I don't yet own. On blu-ray.
7) Dark chocolate. Preferably Dove brand.
8) The new Enya album. I told my husband that I want this the most. It will probably be my only gift from him, and I'm fine with that.
9) Pistachios. Mmmmmm.
10) A crockpot. We have one, but I kinda dropped it while cleaning it and now it has a crack. (Those darn things are heavy!) It might still be usable if I have a liner inside. I'll be trying it next week when I cook a chicken. Cross your fingers.

If any of you feel like giving me a gift this year, just tell your friends and family about my books. That's the best thing for a struggling author. :)

I'm currently working on gifts for family. I finished the princess pictures for my niece. I'll show them to you after Christmas. I have some fun ideas for the nephews, if I can find the stuff I need. Being poor doesn't mean I can't give great gifts. I'm pretty lucky to have useful talents. I hope the recipients feel the same way.



Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Making Presents


It looks like this year will be another year for homemade presents. I'm totally fine with that, since I was planning to do art stuff for some people anyway. My niece will be getting Disney princess art to hang in her room. I'm going to try to get started on them this week, as well as a few other projects for friends/neighbors. Dollar store, here I come! Seriously, I saw a really cute idea on Pinterest that I'm going to make. I won't say more than that. I'm super glad I have some art and craft talent, otherwise I'd have nothing to give. Being poor is hard, especially around the holidays, when I would love nothing more than to buy something fantastic to give my husband and family members. I know the source of the gift doesn't matter as much as the meaning behind it. And I'm not so destitute that I'm starving or homeless. I don't mean to trivialize those who are seriously struggling. Everyone has financial problems at some point. I just hope our turn doesn't last forever.

My poll will be up for at least another week, perhaps till the end of the month. Please help a poor gal out! :)







Saturday, November 14, 2015

Who Will it Be?




Just popping in to ask/remind you to participate in my poll. I just added a new option, so check it out!

I think I finally figured out why Foretold has been giving me grief. There were too many things going on. Some things can wait for later books, so that's what I'm doing. I would love to have it ready before the end of the year, but I'm not sure. I'll keep working on it!


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Couldn't Wait!


Newest nephew (aka Juan Pierre) decided to make his grand entrance into the world last Thursday! His due date was later this month, (around the 24th I think), but like his big sister (who was born a month early) he couldn't wait to be with his family. The whole labor story/experience was a bit on the scary side. He was sideways during their last Dr.'s visit. A c-section was planned. But, little dude decided he'd handle it on his own. Early Thursday morning, things got started. Mom and Dad got to the hospital and literally minutes later, he was on the way--breech. No doctor was in sight. The nurses stepped in like champs. Luckily, everything turned out okay. He and my sister are both doing great. He was 5 lbs. 14 oz, 18 inches. For the first couple of days, they weren't sure on a name. I was still holding out for J.P...

Welcome Jace Jeffrey!

Isn't he scrumptious?!




Here he is with his favorite aunt.


I adore my niece and nephews! They are the closest thing I get to being a mom.  Until I have angels of my own, I'm content to do all I can to spoil them. That's what good aunts do, right? :)









Saturday, November 7, 2015

Tis the Season

I'm a bit under the weather. I'm not sure if it's a cold or allergies, or a bit of both. Either way it's no fun. Hopefully this will be the only time I'm sick for the rest of the foreseeable future. I was sick during Christmas last year, something I hope never to repeat. This is a short post, but know that my upcoming Tuesday post will be awesome! Pictures will be included :) That's all I'll say about it. Stay healthy!

Also, don't forget to vote in my poll.



Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Pick a Character


So, when I'm done with Foretold, I thought it would be fun to write up a short side story about one of the characters from the series. It will most likely be set before the current adventures, before they all meet each other. I'm going to let you guys decide who the lucky character will be. Take a moment to cast your vote and I'll let you know the results later on. You can vote more than once and if you have any other suggestions, choose "other" in the poll and write in your answer. Happy voting!


Which Character from the Vessel Series should have their own short side story?
Logan
Ravis
Tobin
Shiva
Lienda
Mort'sen (from book 2)
Re'ner and Saris
Other
Please Specify:
make a poll

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Where is She?


During the past week, I've seen a few stories on Facebook about people finding a complete stranger who looks like them. Their doppelgänger. Apparently, there's a chance that everyone has up to seven people somewhere in the world who looks like them. Pretty cool. Well, I found a website that is helping people find their doppelgängers. It's called twinstrangers.net. It's easy to sign up. I did yesterday and spent a good two hours looking at pictures of potential twin strangers. No luck so far. There's a possibility I won't find anyone. Maybe my twins aren't on the site. I'm going to keep looking!

Happy Halloween! I'm not planning on doing anything particularly Halloween-y. Yes, I'll be one of those Scrooges who hides in their home, ignoring the doorbell as the trick-or-treaters come by. Not that I expect many kids. If I remember correctly, no one came last year. We are, however, going out for dinner. I've got a coupon :)


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

:)


One of my bestest friends texted me yesterday to tell me that she finished reading Taela and that she loved it! I know she had been meaning to read it since it came out and finally was able to. She's going to start Sources soon. I feel so happy knowing that my hard work is actually worth it, because there are times when I'm less certain. Sales are not great, but I don't expect them to be until I can financially do more to spread the word. Of course, I love it when my few loyal fans help me out. Something as simple as mentioning one of my books or my blog could potentially bring another awesome fan. I want to do fun things with my fans. I haven't done a Super Fan activity in a while, but I will get back on track soon. I have an idea that I think could be fun, but I'll wait a bit longer before mentioning it.

By the way, with Christmas coming up, you could start thinking of friends and family who enjoy reading...



Saturday, October 24, 2015

A Gift for All


My birthday is tomorrow. Yay for me! My hubby and I are going out to eat tonight. I have a couple of restaurant coupons that will get me free food, so we're going to live it up by spending as little money as possible. Tomorrow, we're heading out to my parents' house for dinner. No big deal, but I'm looking forward to it.

A couple of posts ago, I offered the idea of letting everyone read the first chapter of Foretold as my gift to you. It has not been looked at by my editor yet, so there could be changes later on, but you'll get the gist. I suppose if you haven't read the first two books in the series, you won't know what's going on, but you're still welcome to read it. Books One and Two are any where from free to $1.99 (the ebook versions), depending on where you purchase them. Now's a great time to get them!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

In a Theater Not So Far Away...


Just bought our tickets for the new Star Wars movie. It looks pretty dang awesome! I just hope that nothing comes up to prevent us from going. Last time I bought tickets ahead of time was for Ant Man and I hurt my back that afternoon. We had to go later, buying tickets all over again. I don't like wasting money. The only other movie I can think of that I'm planning to see this year is the final Hunger Games. Though I enjoyed all the books, I'm not as excited, because I already know what happens. With Star Wars, it'll all be new. My husband is concerned that JJ Abrams will mess it up like he did Star Trek. I have no qualms with his Star Trek movies, so I'm not too worried. One of my all-time favorite TV shows is Alias, which Abrams also did. Then again, he did Lost as well, and that show was only good for a season or two. As long as it isn't an M. Night Shyamalan/Last Airbender type fiasco. That movie makes me want to weep and scream in rage at the same time. I heard he's planning to do a sequel... Someone stop him!! Anyway, I'll probably do a review of Star Wars sometime after I see it. Two months to go!


Saturday, October 17, 2015

Lindsey Makes Everything Better


Sorry for the late/short post. I was distracted by other matters, and exercising. I try to walk/run on the treadmill at least three times a week, including Saturdays. I don't particularly enjoy it, but it's tolerable if I'm jamming out to Lindsey Stirling. I love her music. I've probably mentioned this, but I have her two albums on repeat and will listen to them all day long, over and over. I can't wait till her next one comes out. I have no idea when that will be. In the meantime, I'll get Enya's new album next month. (SQUEEEEE!) If those two ladies ever collaborated together, I think I'd die of happiness.


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Lower Ebook Price


I've decided to lower the ebook price for Sources in preparation for the release of Foretold. Starting tomorrow, it will go from $2.99 to $1.99 on Amazon. Other retailers, like Barnes and Noble, iBookstore, and Kobo will not have the new price for about 30 days. They just take longer to adjust. However, lulu.com will have the new price and they offer versions that work on many different devices, so check there.

I hope to start on the cover for Foretold soon, so stay tuned.


Saturday, October 10, 2015

The Big 3-4!


My birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks. In the past I've done a giveaway to celebrate, but funds in my bank account are a bit low at the moment. I've been trying to think of something else to do instead. A while back, I let my Super Fans read the (unedited) first chapter of Foretold. I might make it available to everyone for the occasion. What do you think?

Speaking of Foretold, this book is giving me stress. There are things that I'm not happy with that need to be tweaked in a serious way. I have some ideas on how to fix the problems, so hopefully I'll get back on track to actually finishing the darn thing. Wish me luck!


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Cuteness Overload


The baby shower/sprinkle was a success. My sister got a bunch of adorable outfits for baby Juan. (If you didn't read my previous post, the baby's name is not really Juan. That's just what I'm calling him until he gets a name.) I promised to show pics of what I made/gave, so here they are.

The Onesies:

Cap is my favorite


An awesome narwhal


If you can't tell, there are dinos in the background


 A cute little monster. I call him Squirt.


Pictures for baby's room:






I actually did something to the background of the pictures later on. (Some splotches of blue.) I drew the pics on foam board and then painted with acrylic. Lots of fun! I'll probably do some Disney princesses for my niece for Christmas.






 

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Welcoming Juan


My amazing sister is expecting her second child in November. This will be nephew #3. (I have one niece.) We're all really excited for him to come. Since he doesn't yet have a name, I've decided to call him Juan Pierre. I think it offers some needed ethnic variety. (Their last name is of Scottish flavor, which makes it even better.) I don't think they're sold on it yet.

For fun, my mom, sisters-in-law, and I are throwing a very small baby shower for my sister on Saturday. I guess it's called a 'baby sprinkle' when it's for the second baby. No lame games, just food and conversation. And gifts. Yesterday, I did some shopping. I got a bunch of diapers and wipes and some cute outfits. As part of my gift, I will be painting adorable pictures on some white onesies. I also have a little surprise up my sleeve. I'll share pics of everything later on. I won't be doing a post on Saturday so I can get stuff ready. I'm sure you'll survive the weekend without me :)






Saturday, September 26, 2015

Closed... For Now


I've decided to close my blog shop for the time being. It has not been profitable as of yet, so I'm going to use some of the merch for other purposes. I will likely try again at some future time, like when I gain more than a few fans :)

I'm going to start thinking about the next Super Fan fun. Now is a good time to join!


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Wii!


I mentioned that we got a Wii U a few weeks ago. It's been super fun! I pretty much rock at Mario Kart 8. Hubby and I beat Super Mario 3D World, mostly due to his skills. I died a lot. We've borrowed some games from one of my brothers, who has a HUGE collection of all sorts of consoles and games. This is good for us, because we can test out games to find ones we really like and buy them ourselves. So far, my hubby really likes Captain Toad Treasure Tracker. We both like Pikmin 3. We also tried Kirby and the Rainbow Curse. Though the graphics are stellar, the controls are kind of awkward. And it's not as two-player friendly as Return to Dreamland. The last we one borrowed is LoZ Windwaker HD. I haven't played many Zelda games, but I might give this one a try. My bro has Splatoon and Mario Maker, which we hope to try in the future. Anyone out there have any other suggestions?

My day job has started up again, which cuts into my writing time. Hopefully I'll get both done, so I can have a paycheck AND finally publish Foretold!


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Picture Book Idea


Sorry this is so late. I was creating a little art piece to honor a young lady I know who just found out she has cancer. She's strong and has a lot of support.

A while back, I was doodling and came up with a cute picture of a girl. I called her Amelia and decided she was about five years old. Since then, I considered using her in a series of children's picture books. Now, I have only a vague idea about how to make a children's picture book, especially if I self-publish it. I'm sure figuring it out won't be that hard.  And I won't start on it right away. I have too many other things that need to be finished first, but it is something I want to do. Here is the little star herself:


Isn't she cute? :)



Saturday, September 12, 2015

Art in Many Forms


I like finding new sites to sell my art. This latest one is redbubble.com They've got some different products from some of the other places I use, like leggings, scarves, and bedding. Feel free to check out what I've got so far, which includes some new stuff.

I'm working really hard on Foretold. Things are still a little rocky as I try to get events in order, but it's coming along. Sorry again for not having it finished. Just know when I do get it done, it will be awesome!

Over the past several weeks, I've continued to upload pictures on my webcomic for Grim's Days Off. He's been traveling around the world, visiting famous landmarks. He only has two more stops on his grand adventure! If you've been following, do you have a favorite?


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Hail Mary


I'm a HUGE fan of BYU football, and have been for about 16 years. Most of my family members are U of U fans, the rival school here in Utah. Anyway, I watched the opening game on Saturday evening against Nebraska. Both teams had their ups and downs. At the end of the forth quarter, Nebraska was up one point. BYU had the ball with one second left. One. Second. Now, I believe in miracles, but wasn't really expecting one that evening. The quarterback threw a Hail Mary pass toward the end zone and the receiver caught it just inside the line. It was AWESOME! I danced around the room, cheering. My husband, who couldn't care less about any sport, thought it was amusing. It was a great game. The only drawback was that the starting quarterback broke his foot and is out for the season. He broke his leg last year. Poor guy can't catch a break, except his bones. (Hahaha!) I live close to BYU, and hope to someday go to a home game. They usually have a game around my birthday each year, so maybe it will be my present one of these days.


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Goodbye, Summertime


I'm still alive, in case you were worried. During the weeks away from blogging, many things happened. I hurt my back and was stuck in bed for a week. I have back problems on occasion. This particular time I was making sandwiches. Ta da! Seriously though, I must have done something earlier in the day that I didn't notice at the time and standing at the kitchen counter, scooping out an avocado was the kicker. Pinched a nerve like a champ. Hurt like a swear. It also prevented us from going camping with my family. Something we had planned months in advance.

Hubby and I went to our local water park. It was my first time there. If you didn't already know, I can't swim and I have a moderate fear of water. Needless to stay, I had a hard time relaxing and having fun. We'll try again next year.

I got to babysit my adorable niece for a couple of days. She turned four in August. She is so smart and creative. I just adore her!

Hubby and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary and also his birthday. They are one day apart. For our anniversary, we ate out at Olive Garden (yay for gift cards). For his birthday, I made Thai curry, a copycat version of the Bangkok Curry from Noodles and Co. It was delicious. The gift we got for both occasions, and probably for my birthday in October, was a Wii U. It's a fun little distraction from other things that need to get done, like dishes and day job.

I'm sure some of you are wondering about a little goal I set for myself to finish writing Foretold by the time I got back. Don't hate my guts. I'm still not done. I'm not disappointed in myself, though. It hasn't been working out the way I wanted, which means a lot of rethinking. I want it to be the best I can make it, so until that happens, I will keep working on it. Please have patience with me. It is coming.



Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Happy 300 Day!


Now, I had planned to include a giveaway winner in today's "celebration", but since no one entered, I guess I'll celebrate by saving $25. I am quite surprised, and honestly disappointed, that no one entered. I had plenty of traffic to the entry post. Can anyone give me an idea? Oh well. Better luck next time.

I also thought I'd share some of my most popular/visited posts from among that last 100.



Lemme Try This --  This is where I announced my Quote Game. I did a few rounds on Facebook, but it wasn't very successful. There were a couple of fans that participated, for which I'm grateful. I may try it again in the future.

The Audio Journey Begins -- Did you know I started making my own audio book for The Bride? Well, some chapters are done. Maybe I should finish the book...

Fun With Cars -- Oh the woes of owning a car. This one is about late registration. Guess what's late again this year? The Jimmy needs a new transmission before it will pass safety/emissions. Anyone got a bucket of money they want to send my way?

Cooking With Kacie 2 -- This is it, people. THE FOCACCIA. This bread recipe is the best thing I've found in years. I make it all the time and it's super easy. In fact, I'm making some today for sandwiches and tomorrow for deep dish pizza. Oh, and again on Thursday for bread sticks. If you like homemade bread, give this a try.

DIY-ing and DIY-ing: Round Two -- My posts about products I make instead of buy. Some pretty good stuff, if I say so myself.

Well, there you go. I want to thank those of you who have stuck with me for 300 posts. They're not always exciting, but I do enjoy sharing my thoughts and experiences with you. I'm going to take a short break from blogging. I'll be back in September, unless I have something utterly amazing to share before then.



Saturday, July 18, 2015

My Geekiness Is Showing: Round Two


A while back, I posted some pics of fictional characters from the vast Geek Universe that I plan to use in an ABC book for my future kids. (You can see them here.) At the time I only had a few done. Now I have most of them done. Here are some more examples.














There are two pictures for each letter (that's why some just say ...and so-and-so).

 
To further illustrate my tendency towards the geek end of things, I recently started reading a lot of manga. If you don't know what manga is, it is essentially Japanese comics. Of course, what I read is translated into English. I like the sweet, sappy romances (usually categorized as shoujo). Some are short, some are long. My favorites include Strobe Edge, Wild Wing, Home, Kanata Kara, Nise no Chigiri, and Kingyo Sou. One on my list to-read is Kimi ni Todoke. I've already watched the anime and the live action movie, both of which are excellent. Now that I'm hooked, I think I want try including manga as a way to share my stories. If you read my Samurai Penguin webcomic, you'll know I'm not the best at comic style art. I think I'm getting better, but if I want to pursue manga, I'm going to need a lot of practice. I have some tutorials at my disposal, which should help get me started. So that's a new goal I have.

Don't forget to enter my giveaway. It ends soon. So far, I only hear crickets. I guess people don't want an amazon gift card. That's okay, I'll use it myself. :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The (Mostly) Great Outdoors



Next weekend, hubby and I are going camping with my family. I'm not a huge fan of camping, but I am a huge fan of my family. They are the best. My reasons for not enjoying camping to its fullest is not because I'm a high maintainence, prissy type person who hates getting dirty, etc. It's all about the sleeping, or in my case, the not sleeping. (And the bugs. And the possibility of bears.) Now that I've changed my nighttime routine, (vitamins, herbal supplements, essential oils) I'm hoping this problem might actually be resolved. I am crossing my fingers.

We went camping last summer. I'm almost positive I wrote about, but I can't seem to find the post. Well, it rained the entire time. And I mean, rained. I was half expecting an Ark to float by. We only stayed one night instead of the planned two. I'm really hoping the rain stays away this year. (And the bugs. And the bears.)

Hey, enter my giveaway! Who doesn't want free Amazon? After I announce the winner next Tuesday, I'll be taking a little break from blogging, probably till the end of August. When I come back, I hope to be able to announce the completion of Foretold. Eeek! I'd better get busy!



Saturday, July 11, 2015

Countdown to the Big 3-0-0!


To celebrate my upcoming 300th post, I am doing a giveaway! It starts today and ends on July 19 at midnight. The winner will be randomly selected from all eligible entrants and announced on July 21 to coincide with the 300th post. The prize will be a $25 Amazon e-giftcard, which will be emailed to the winner. Since I live in the US and will get the giftcard from the US amazon.com, the giveaway is for US residents only. Sorry. In the future I may figure out a way to make this international, but for now, I'm taking the easy route. You must be 18 or older to enter/win.

I know it's fun to enter giveaways, and easy to forget the person later on. I would really appreciate some support from existing and potential fans. All my books are available on all amazon.com sites in ebook form and paperback. If you haven't given them a try, please do so! And if you've read one or more and haven't yet given them a glorious review, I invite you do that as well. Each small bit of help will ultimately make my slow climb to success that much sweeter. I will also once again plug my Super Fan club. The membership is small right now, but we've done some fun things already. I enjoy interacting with fans and sharing exclusive stuff with them in return for their loyalty.


 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Workin' It


About 10 years ago, I started eating healthier and working out regularly, which was hard because I love food (mostly the junk kind) and I hate exercising. This lasted for about 5 years, where I was able to lose about 30 pounds and keep it off. After getting married, I kinda stopped doing both things, especially the exercising, though I was still able to manage my weight. I worked at an elementary at the time, so I remained physical during PE and recess. After a job change, I was much more sedentary and my eating habits, while still healthy from time to time, included more junk. Needless to say, I started to gain weight again. Never to the extent as before, but clothes weren't fitting as well and I was feeling more lethargic. I needed to change, again. About four months ago, I started exercising again-- treadmill and some simple yoga. I hate running. I think it is akin to torture. When I began, I was content to simply walk on the treadmill. After a week or so, I added some minimal jogging. That was hard. Now, even though I still don't like running, I can run on the treadmill for a few minutes in between some walking. I'm seeing improvements with energy, how my clothes fit, and  my overall appearance. My diet isn't as strict as it was when I first lost weight, but I do make an effort to include healthier foods and healthy substitutions. Like yesterday, I wanted some cookies. I followed a basic chocolate chip recipe, but instead of using butter or shortening, I used sour cream. This changes the consistency a bit, but the cookies are still delicious. I know it's important to take care of myself, so I will continue these habits for as long as I can. Or until Science discovers that magic pill. :)


Two weeks from today will be my 300th post. I'll be doing a giveaway, which will start on Saturday. You'll get all the details then.







Saturday, July 4, 2015

Freedom



Today is Independence Day here in the US. It's usually a time to think back and be grateful for those who sacrificed so much for us to have the rights and freedoms we have now. While I will always remember and honor those people, including those who serve and sacrifice today, it is pretty obvious that our country is a lot different than it was when it began. Some of those differences are good, others not so much. I'm not going to get into a heated personal or political rant, but I just want to express that I can see that this nation is suffering in many ways. It's going to get worse, at least for those of us who wish for more faith in and reliance on God. He hasn't left us, and will not, no matter how hard some people try to push Him away. God bless America, now more than ever.








Tuesday, June 30, 2015

A Question or Three



Today is the third installment of Super Fan fun. I will be interacting live with my Fans tonight, answering their questions about writing, my books, and pretty much anything else they want to know, within reason. I'm pretty excited. I'll also be asking questions of my own and thought I'd include a few of them here for those of you who will be missing out on the fun.

1) What draws you to a book, making you decide to read it? (cover, title, genre, author, blurb, etc.)

2) Why did you decide to give my book(s) a try?

3) What do you like most about your favorite character(s) from my books?


Answering these is just for fun and will not, unfortunately, make you eligible for the $25 Amazon gift card prize. But if you join within the next few hours, I will send out your invitation before the party starts.


Saturday, June 27, 2015

Magical


Hubby and I saw Inside Out this past week, utilizing our local theater's Five Dollar Tuesdays deal. We like this deal. Anyway, I had high expectations, as I do with all Disny/Pixar films, and it did not disappoint. The animation was amazing. I loved the detail of the slight fuzziness of the outline of the emotions' bodies. Joy was adorable. The voice actors were excellent. Bing Bong was, in my opinion, a scene stealer. He was fun and happy and spontaneous, just what an imaginary friend ought to be. I won't give any spoilers, but I cried during the one scene where he..... If you've seen it, you know exactly what I'm talking about. I'm was pleased with the overall story as well. Great film. I wouldn't mind seeing again while it's still in the theaters. On a Tuesday, of course.


Here's another reminder for Super Fan fun #3, coming up on June 30 at 7:00 Mountain time. You can still get an invitation if you join before then. I'm hoping for a minimal amount of success, which equates to at least one person showing up. Me and my one friend will have a blast! :)



Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Pages and Pages



Whenever I get a new book idea, I have to write it down quickly or I will forget about it. I usually have a notebook or my iPad handy, but I've been known to write in the spaces of a Sudoku puzzle or word search. I recently went through a box of piano music and found a notebook with several pages of hastily scribbled book ideas. I love finding treasures like this. Some of them I remember writing, others are a pleasant surprise. There's one online that I've been thinking about in the last month or so, but I can't find where I wrote it down. I can remeber bits of it, but not enough to rewrite it word for word. I may have to just start from scratch, using the parts I remember along the way. There are still a couple of places I can look for the original since we haven't unpacked EVERYTHING from our move almost a year ago. Wish me luck!

Invitations for Super Fan fun #3 have been sent out. You can still get one of your own if you join before June 30!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Fun is Coming...



I'll be sending out invitations for Super Fan fun #3 (aka The Q&A) on Tuesday. I decided just to make a new page here on my blog and give the link in the invitation. Only those with the link will be allowed in. You lucky few will be able to come to the page at anytime after that to start asking your questions. I will have some questions of my own on there for you to answer as well. Then, on June 30 at 7:00-8:00 pm Mountain time, I will be on the page live to answer and interact. This is completely new for me, so I have no idea how well/horribly it will turn out. If you haven't joined the club yet, do so soon. Invitations can be sent out to new members until the day before the event. Remember, all who participate will be eligible to win a $25 Amazon gift card (the kind you email).



Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Mountains


I have a lot of dishes and laundry to do. Both have piled up over the last several days and now I get to tackle them both. Unfortunately, I have to climb a flight of stairs to accomplish these feats. Not that I'm complaining (much), but it makes me grateful for the times in the past when I just had to head to the adjoining room. Hubby and I are lucky to be living with his grandparents at this time, to help them out as they get older and to help ourselves out as we try to regulate our finances. They are great people and we're very lucky to be welcomed into their home. I do hope sometime in the future we will be able to have a home of our own, but for now, I'll hike up the stairs with my piles of stuff and be grateful.



Saturday, June 13, 2015

Get To Work!


I just finished my latest round of Day Job, so for the next several weeks I will be able to focus more on writing. My goal to finish Foretold by the end of August is still in play. I'll also be working on the book cover (I have a few ideas) and getting some Samurai Penguin scenes added to my inventory. Lots to do! FYI, in about six weeks, I will hit my 300th post, which I think deserves a giveaway. I'll get that set up soon, so stay tuned.

I mentioned a while ago that hubby and I plan to set up a website for us to use for all our creativeness. We haven't had the time or money to do it yet, but it looks like that will finally be in the works in the next month or two. It's going to be awesome! We'll have pages for art, writing, cooking, contests, and other fun stuff. We really hope it will turn into something profitable as well, seeing as how we both dislike our day jobs. It will take a lot of work and time, but we're excited about it.


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Two Quick Things



First, I did some experimenting with my recent batch of body soap to make it thicker. I had the idea to use unflavored gelatin. After reading up on it, I found that it can be beneficial for skin on its own. So, I bought a box filled with little packets. Each packet has roughly a tablespoon of powder. For the amount of body soap in the recipe, I figure 5-6 packets will do the trick. I poured some of the soap (1-2 cups worth) into a small pot, boiled it, and then dissolved the gelatin. I then poured it back into the container and shook it to mix. Shake again at least once an hour. It will take several hours to see results. I actually used a few more packets at first, but the soap was too gelatinous. Aren't you glad I figured this out for you? :)

Second, I have decided that for the next Super Fan fun, anyone who participates will be entered to win a $25 Amazon gift card. (To be emailed to winner) You must be a member of the club, obviously, and then ask at least one question during the online Q&A. I'm still trying to figure out when/how to host it, but invitations will be sent out soon. Join the club now!


Saturday, June 6, 2015

DIY-ing: Round Two


I'm slowly turning into a health nut. I never thought I would, but it's happening, people. If you missed my previous post about homemade products, you can see it here. This time around, I made toothpaste and body soap. I've been using the toothpaste for a couple of weeks and the the body soap was made yesterday and has not yet been tested. I still love the deodorant I made and the face moisturizer is good too. The nonstick spray is holding up as well. My husband and I have also been using a homemade mouthwash, but he has the recipe for that. I can add that to the next post about this subject, because I'm probably not done. Here are the basic recipes for the toothpaste and body soap.

Toothpaste (from thehomesteadsurvival.com)

4 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon coral calcium (I didn't use this)
1/2 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt (I ground this up a bit with a mortar and pestle)
1 tablespoon raw honey
2 drops cinnamon essential oil
5 drops peppermint essential oil (I used different oils)

I actually halved the recipe to test it out first. Melt the coconut oil in a microwave safe bowl. Add rest of ingredients, mix well. Set aside to cool. I used about 3-4 drops of spearmint essential oil, 2-3 drops of myrrh e.o., and 2-3 drops of frankenscense e.o. I put the cooled product in a plastic cup and apply it to my toothbrush with a toothpick. High tech, I know. The taste is not unpleasant. I mostly taste the salt, which is there as a polisher. The honey helps, because the essential oils would be nasty otherwise.


Body Soap (Derived from various recipes). *****newer version here*******

8 cups of water
1 bar of Castile soap. (I bought a 3 pack on Amazon for about $5)
1/2 cup coconut milk
2-3 tablespoons vegetable glycerin (also Amazon)
1 tablespoon jojoba oil
1 teaspoon liquid vitamin E
5-10 drops of the following essential oils: lavender and tea tree
1/2 teaspoon green tea extract

Pour 1 cup water into medium saucepan, heat until simmering. Grate the bar soap and add to water. Turn down heat and let the soap melt. Add coconut milk. When soap is melted, add glycerin and remaining ingredients. In a large container, pour the remaining amount of water and add heated mixture. Cover with lid and shake well. Remove lid and allow to cool for at least 12 hours. It's supposed to thicken a bit. Like I mentioned above, I haven't tested this yet. I might still be runny, so I may need to tweak a few things. I'll give results at another time.

*****newer version here*****












Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Can't Help It


I seem to get distracted easily. For instance, I forgot today was Tuesday and I needed to write a blog post because I was perusing Pinterest. Sometimes the distractions are accidental and sometimes on purpose depending on what I should be doing. I've had a string of new book ideas over the past week and I physically have to stop myself from jumping into one of them right away. One in particular is an idea I'm really excited about and would love to get started on, but I have so many others things I need to do first. Now that I've set a goal for finishing Foretold, I can't allow my mind to wander to other things. It's harder than it sounds. Poor me, right?


Don't forget to join my Super Fan club!


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Super Fan Fun #3 Coming Soon


There wasn't a SFF in May, mostly because I wasn't sure what to do next, but now I think I know, and it will come in June. But first, I would really like to increase the membership. If you've read even one of my books, or are planning to, please join! My plan is to do an online Q&A (I'll figure out where/when soon) concerning me as a writer, my books, and pretty much anything else that is applicable for public knowledge. I'll send out the invitations sometime mid-June and then the "event" will happen at the end of the month. I'm willing to do this even with just the few members I have now, but I'd REALLY like more people involved. Join, spread the word, make posters, knock on doors... Anyway, start brewing some questions in your fabulous brains.

P.S. There may or may not be a giveaway involved. :)



Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Fun With Cars 2


You know how much I love cars. If you need a reminder, you can go here. Our dear Jimmy has had a bad transmission for a while and we've been waiting for it to take its last breath. Well, yesterday it came close. As we were cruising down the freeway, on our way to my parents' house for Memorial Day fun, the car suddenly felt like it was stalling. Luckily hubby was driving, because I probably would've freaked out. More. We were able to continue, but couldn't excelerate more than 60 mph. We managed to get to our destination and back home again. (About 45 miles each way) We didn't take the freeway home, which meant an extra 50 or so minutes. We don't dare drive more than 50 mph with it right now. Unfortunately, we don't quite have the money to a) fix it, or b) get a new car. We do have a second car, but my in-laws are using it, and it happens to be on the fritz right now as well. Hopefully Jimmy will live on until we can get the money for whatever we decide. And here I was thinking we'd be able to pay off some debts with upcoming money. Hahaha! Silly me!


Saturday, May 23, 2015

Summer Fun


In my neck of the woods, there are some fun attractions that are owned by the same company- two water parks and a couple of fun centers that have mini golf, laser tag, etc. Though I've lived in Utah my entire life, I've never been to these particular water parks. A couple of days ago, we scored some season passes at a huge discount that will give us full access to each of these places, as well as free/discounted admittance to other places in the area, like a movie theater, an outdoor play theater, and sporting events. I'm pretty excited to put the pass to use. Summer fun, here I come!

Speaking of summer fun, I have set a goal for myself to finish Foretold by the end of August. I've been a real slacker and I need to get busy. I'm also going to start thinking of another giveaway to do, so stay tuned!


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Here's Some Rambling


I've been trying to think of something to write, but my mind isn't cooperating. If my life were more exciting, I might not have this problem. Then again, if that were the case I might be too busy to write at all. Here's something. I am scrabbling to get the next scene of Samurai Penguin finished before Thursday. I kinda put it off for too long. After this next scene, I'll be taking a little break for a couple months, mostly so I can replenish my scene inventory. Have any of you been keeping up Kuroshiro? Working on this webcomic has got me thinking about other stories I could transform into a webcomic. It takes far more work than I initially thought. Unfortunately, unless I start making more money with my writing, I'll have to keep my regular job, which won't allow me to pursue other webcomics right now. Maybe someday...


Saturday, May 16, 2015

Interaction


I've tried a few ways to interact with readers, without much success. My giveaways have probably gotten the most participation, understandably, since someone gets free stuff. That's why I enter giveaways. I know I'm still not widely known, so I can't get too bent out of shape, but I also know I have some fans out there. I can usually count on those few to help me out when I want some interaction. So, thanks. You know who you are. With that said, I'm not going to give up on getting people involved. One of these times, I'll come up with something that just might be the exact "something" to get the masses going. I'm hopeful. I mentioned a while ago about wanting to host a little contest involving my books, specifically rewriting or adding to your favorite scene. I haven't worked out all the details yet, but I'm thinking that will be one of my next endeavors. There will be a prize. Most likely an Amazon gift card. So, to prepare, I suggest you start thinking about the scenes you like best, or read the books for the first time. Summertime is the perfect time to pick up a book or two. :)


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Savings


I love trying new things to help me save money. About four months ago I started using an app called Ibotta, which is a rebate opportunity for shopping. I've only used it for groceries so far, but I really like it. They offer rebates for all sorts of things, and more recently they've added produce and generic brand products. It's pretty easy to use. You just use your phone to scan the barcodes of applicable products and then take a picture of your receipt and send it in. So far I've earned about $20 for buying things I normally buy, and the savings add up even more when I use coupons for those products as well. If you have friends who also use the app, you can work together to get bonus savings. I'm not getting anything for writing this. I just really like the app. I like anything that saves me money.

A while ago I mentioned an online snack site that I've been using-- graze.com. If you use this code-- KACIET3TB -- you can get your first and fifth snack box free. Give it a try!



Saturday, May 9, 2015

Mothers


So tomorrow is Mother's Day here in the U.S. Not everyone is a fan for their own reasons, and that's okay. I for one choose to enjoy it. Not because I'm a mother, (because I'm not) but because there are great examples of motherhood in my life. My own mom is a wonderful person. She is kind and compassionate, funny and beautiful. I literally wouldn't be here without her :)  I love her so much. My sister and sisters-in-law are, or will someday be, great mothers as well. I'm so grateful for my niece and nephews. My grandmothers, including those who have passed on, and other family members will always hold a special place in my heart. I can't forget my mother-in-law. She is a great woman and I'm especially grateful to her for raising such a wonderful son.

While all the above is true, there is a small part of me that is sad on Mother's Day. Some of you may know this, and I may have even mentioned it here, but my husband and I have struggled with infertility for the past 5+ years. We don't have a diagnosis to explain the difficulty as of yet, but we continue to hope for a miracle. Adoption is definitely a possibility, though we don't currently have the financial stability to pursue it. It is such a hard thing to explain to those who haven't experienced it. I ache inside, wishing I could utilize the love and caring I have with a family of my own. I try not to feel resentful or jealous of the hundreds of exciting birth announcements or beautiful baby pictures posted on social media. Even though I AM happy for them, it is hard sometimes. I have to rely on my faith and focus on the many blessings I already have. If or when that day finally comes, I have great examples to glean from. I love all the mothers in my life. Happy Mother's Day!


Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Geek Games



My husband is the most wonderful person I know. One of the things I like about him is his geekiness. I've got my own geekiness and they usually compliment each other. There's been one thing, however, that he enjoys, but I just haven't been able to get into. His taste in board/card games. He loves D&D and other tabletop RPGs and also Magic the Gathering. Not my thing. He tried to teach me how to play Magic once, but I was not impressed. (But I was plenty confused.) Well yesterday evening, we invited two of his young cousins over to play some games and he decided to teach them Magic. I sat back and watched, remembering a few things from my own lesson. The boys were really excited about it. Afterward, for some inexplicable reason, I decided to give it another try. I downloaded the app version onto my iPad and went through the tutorials. It still doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but I get the gist. I will keep trying and, who knows, I might end up enjoying it. Heck, I thought the same thing about Doctor Who-- another geek thing my husband got me sucked into. The geek is strong with this one.

P.S. We saw Avengers II over the weekend. Excellent. In case you're wondering Captain America is my favorite Avenger.


Saturday, May 2, 2015

DIY-ing


I like making stuff, usually food, but also other useful things to save money. I'm not a strict all-natural kind of person (I'd say I'm mild to moderate) but there are a few products I decided to try and make myself. (I will include recipe/instructions at the end) The first was deodorant. I gave up on antiperspirants a while ago because of the added chemicals and such, but it was hard to find something economical that also worked well. Thanks to Pinterest, I found a DIY recipe that I've been using for a few weeks and I give it two thumbs up. The second project was face moisturizer. This was mostly to incorporate some essential oils I've procured that have skin benefits. I made it about a week ago and am still trying to decide if I like it. It works, and I haven't broken out in a rash or anything, but I've yet to conclude if I've noticed much of a difference. Lastly, for now, was nonstick spray. I've bought the cheap stuf for years and have always loathed the sticky residue it leaves behind. Sure, I could have gotten the name brand stuff like Pam, but my need for thriftiness sometimes comes on too strong. So far, the homemade stuff is working great and I've yet to see any residue. All in all, I think I've been successful. If you're an all natural nut or just curious, give them a try!


Deodorant (found on greatist.com)

1/2 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup baking soda
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon essential oils of your choice

Put coconut oil in microwave safe bowl and heat until melted. Mix in essential oils (I used lavender, tea tree, and grapefruit) and then add baking soda and cornstarch. Mix well, getting out lumps. Put in fridge or leave somewhere cool until set. It's possible to put this in an empty deodorant container while still liquid but I didn't have one. I left it in the bowl and apply with my fingers, using a plastic baggy to keep my fingers clean. Smells great, lasts fairly long. If I go out in the evening, I usually reapply.


Face moisturizer (from mycrazyblessedlife.com)

2/3 cup coconut oil
1 tablespoon vitamin E oil
Essential oils (about 5 drops per oil)

Place coconut oil in medium bowl and whip with electric mixer for about 20-30 seconds, or until smooth. Add vitamin E and essential oils (I used tea tree, lavender, and frankensense) and mix again until creamy and blended. Scoop into small container, cover with a lid. Keep at room temperature. Now, this leaves my skin feeling rather oily, though not necessarily in a bad way, so I generally only use it at night. I suppose if I massaged it into to my skin for a while, it would absorb more, but I'm not that patient.


Nonstick Spray (found on Pinterest, can't remember the actual site)

Easy peasy
You need a cooking oil of your choice (I used canola) and water. 4 parts water to one part oil. Put in a clean spray bottle that has a "mist" option. Shake well before using. If you spray a hot surface, it may splatter a bit because of the water, but still works great.





Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Shop Flop


I knew starting my own shop was not a guarantee, but I hoped to at least get a sale or two. No such luck yet. I'm not planning to give up, though I will be adjusting the prices a bit to see if that gets a better response. I suppose getting a signed book from an unknown author isn't very exciting :)

Now I must tackle the mountain of dishes threatening to take over my tiny kitchen.

*shop prices are now adjusted for your purchasing pleasure*





Saturday, April 25, 2015

Nearly There


I spent a few days this past week going over The Bride in preparation for submitting it to a fantasy publisher. I made a few minor changes, nothing that impacts the story. Just word preferences and sentence restructuring. It has been fun reading through it again. I actually like going back to read all my books, though doing so has the potential to drive me nuts if I find any lingering small mistakes. I hate that, but I know how difficult it is to catch every little thing. Anyway, I'll be submitting The Bride sometime next week and should hear back within the next 30 days. Cross your fingers that everything will be awesome!

I sent out emails to my Super Fans with their fun #2. I'll be thinking of what to do for #3. Please join if you want to get in on the fun!!


Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Bargains


One of my favorite places to shop at here in Utah is the DI, aka Deseret Industries. Our beloved thrift stores. There are several throughout the state, and even some in a few other states. I live between two in my area. I go there mostly for clothes, but find other treasures as well. I was there yesterday looking for some t-shirts to refashion when I stumbled upon some yarn. I can crochet, but only in its simplest form. Grinning like a dope, I scooped up all the yarn and took it home. (7 skeins for $5?! Heck, yeah.) Now, it could be stated that I have unique tastes in colors and color combos. The skeins are a mix and include orange, beige, and dark brown. A couple have green as well. Some people (my husband) might refer to these as "Grandma Colors", to which I say NAY! Well, maybe they are a little. Anyway, I've started to make a simple shrug type thing. When it's finished, I'll post a pic. Some day I may even learn to do stitches other than singles and doubles. :)

Only a few more days until Super Fan fun #2!


Saturday, April 18, 2015

Fun and Names!


Next Saturday is the second Super Fan fun day! Members will be getting a small peek at my next stand alone book. It's easy to join and you get all the benefits! I simply get the satisfaction of knowing people actually care.

I've gotten back to working a bit more on Foretold, but I won't be getting much of a break between job orders like I usually do. I'll try to get a bunch done before I start working again. I'm also getting a head start on the stand alone I mentioned above, getting names and places sorted out. Naming characters is really fun, but can also be frustrating when I can't find a name that fits right. I often pick names that have a particular meaning to go along with the character's personality or some other aspect of the story. For example, Callia from The Bride means 'beautiful' in Greek. Sometimes I just make up a name with worrying about a meaning. Those are usually the most fun.

Also, don't forget to offer any suggestions for small changes to The Bride if you have any. I'll be submitting the manuscript in the next few weeks.


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Decided


After a little more consideration, I'm going to only submit The Bride to that fantasy publisher I mentioned last post, at least for now. Since I will be submitting it in its manuscript form, it is an opportunity to tweak a few things and fix any lingering errors. I'm not going to do any major overhauls, but I thought I'd open up the floor to my readers. Any suggestions on minor changes? (And I mean minor. Like a word or two. I might even consider a sentence.) Or places you've noticed a tiny error? Don't be offended if I choose not to use your suggestion. Fill free to use the comments here or email me-- kacietaylorbooks@gmail.com

If by some miracle they accept my book, I'll have to remove it from all its current listings. Which means it will no longer be for sale until they publish it, which could be up to a year from now. Hopefully it will all work out!


Saturday, April 11, 2015

Next Phase?


I found a new book publisher through Twitter who specializes in fantasy books. They accept self-published books and I'm considering sending them one or more of mine. I'm thinking either The Bride or Soulless, or maybe both. If by chance either is accepted, I could be on my way to an actual future in writing. I mostly want this for the chance at more skilled marketing. I think my books are pretty good, but I'm not good at getting the word out. This could be just the thing I need. I'll give more details as things go along. Wish me luck!

Don't forget that the next Super Fan fun will be on April 25, where I'll share a few details about my future stand-alone book. Join now! I'm thinking it's going to be awesome!



Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Cooking With Kacie 2


I love to cook. But, even more so, I love to eat what I cook. Luckily, I'm pretty good at both. If you read the related post I did a while back, you might remember that I said I was considering creating a cookbook. That is still a possibility. Until then, I thought I'd share a recipe or two once in a while. Here's one that use quite frequently. Focaccia bread. It's super easy, takes about an hour and a half to make, and is versatile. I've used it for sandwiches, deep dish pizza, cheesy roll-ups, breadsticks, and cinnamon rolls. I'm sure there are many other uses. I'll start with the basic recipe that I found on Pinterest, via madeitateitlovedit.com

Easy Focaccia Flat Bread

2 cups water, warm
1 Tablespoon yeast
1 Tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons salt
4 cups flour

Toppings:
1/2 cup melted butter
olive oil
rosemary
thyme
sesame seeds
parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Dissolve yeast in water. Add sugar and salt. Add flour last. Sitr until mixed; spray cookie sheet with pam. Spread dough in pan (hint: use water on your fingertips to prevent sticking). Top with melted butter or olive oil. Then top with whatever other toppings you like. Let rise for about 45 minutes. Bake at 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes. Cut into squares, serve hot!


Experiment with it. If you want the extra steps for cheesy roll-ups or cinnamon rolls, let me know in the comments and I'll add that later. Enjoy!




Saturday, April 4, 2015

Happy Easter!


I've mentioned before that I am very religious, though I've decided not to make this blog a platform for my beliefs. Now is an exception. Tomorrow (Sunday) is one of the most important holidays to me and I would feel remiss if I did not mention it. Easter is all about Jesus Christ. He died for all mankind. But, more importantly, He lives again. I am grateful for Him and His love for me. If you do not share this belief, please take no offense where none is given. I've kept this part of my life mostly private, not wanting to alienate anyone. Since it is such a huge part of my life, however, I thought I'd give you the opportunity to see another side of me. If you'd like to learn more about my faith, you can visit here. Please know that this topic is special to me and I will not tolerate rudeness. I respect everyone's right to believe as they wish and expect the same courtesy from my fabulous readers. Otherwise, enjoy your weekend!!


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Ooooh, More Book Ideas


I've written before about the ways I get ideas for new books (dreams, names, pictures, etc.) As I was reading about an anime I might start watching, a new idea struck me. I love when this happens. I get a special thrill when a character or setting forms in my brain. Of all the dozens of ideas I have, I know most will probably never become more than a simple outline, which makes me sad, but it just isn't feasible to write them all. It will be difficult to chose the ones that will make the cut, and hopefully my wonderful readers will like the ones I provide. More importantly, I hope that I can focus enough to finish what I'm already working on. :)

Speaking of book ideas....

I think I've decided on my next writing project. In a vote I conducted a while ago, the majority of people wanted me to do a new stand alone. For those of you who have joined my Super Fan club, you will have the fun privilege of being the first to get a description of the plot. I will be sharing this on April 25. Come join the club if you haven't already!






Saturday, March 28, 2015

Revenge of the Allergies


I get seasonal allergies most years, though it changes from season to season so I'm never sure when it will strike. Last year it was during the summer, just after we moved to our new place. I think I wrote/complained about it then. Well, it hit again this past week. I get the whole shebang- itchy eyes, nose, throat; watery eyes; sneezing; runny nose; coughing; moaning; complaining; wanting to die. Like my experience with insomnia, I've tried various things to combat those pesky pollens, molds, etc, but haven't found much that actually helps. I'm not wired to be able to use the things normal people use, like Benadryl or other over the counter stuff. In the past, I've used prescription meds, but that usually meant not being able to sleep. It comes full circle over here in Kacie land. I can't sleep because I'm miserable with allergies. I can't sleep because the meds I'm using to fight the allergies are keeping me awake. Or, I can't sleep because of who knows why. Sorry for all the complaints. I realize I haven't posted much about books or writing in a while. I usually post about things going on and, right now, it's this. Hopefully I'll have more updates on Foretold in the near future. It's slow-going at the moment since I'm working again. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Snackies


I recently found an online shop that sells tasty, somewhat healthy snacks called graze.com. I was able to get my first set of snacks free. I was impressed with the taste, though the portions are a tad small (which is one reason they are healthier) and will continue to get them once a month. They gave me a coupon code to share with friends and anyone else I know, so I thought I'd post it here. With it, you can get your first and fifth boxes free. I get some benefits too :) The kind I got was the four-snack box, which costs $6.99 with free shipping. There are other options as well. I think they only ship to the U.S., but I'm not sure. Feel free to try it. There are some yummy combos. Here's the code- KACIET3TB

Have fun snacking!


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Here We Go...


All right. I'm ready to open shop. This is mostly a trial run to see how it goes. If it becomes a pain or just doesn't work, I'll think of something else. Remember, quantities are few right now, but I can add more if this actually works.

Welcome to Taylor Made Shop.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Shop on Saturday


I know I said I'd open my new shop today, but I'm babysitting my niece today and tomorrow and didn't want to worry about anything else for the moment. Plus, I wasn't able to get the shipping supplies I wanted yet.

We're watching Strawberry Shortcake. It's kind of fun to see the toys I played with as a kid revamped as TV shows. My husband and I are fans of the new My Little Pony show. It's cute and fun.

Gotta go now. The blocks on the floor are just dying to become a castle.


Saturday, March 14, 2015

An Update


Last post was about my struggle and setback with insomnia. Here's what I think happened. When I started my new vitamin/herbal stuff routine, I also included honey, which is widely believed to be beneficial in all sorts of areas, including sleep. During the week of success, we were using a brand of honey that seemed to be part of that success. It ran out, so hubby bought something new. A local, raw,  organic, blah blah honey. Sounds like it should be pretty healthy/awesome stuff, right? However, that is exactly when things started to regress. The new honey was the only thing that was different, but I didn't think of it right away. On day three of horrible no sleep, I used some honey crystals we had stashed away in our pantry instead. (Not sure why we had them, but whatever.) That night, I actually got some decent sleep. The next day, hubby bought the previous brand of honey and now things are much better. As I mentioned before, I don't react well with certain types of medication. I never thought that would include honey. Maybe the raw/organic stuff isn't as awesome as people think. At least for weirdos like me. Anyway, I'm doing better and hope my insomnia is at least under control for now.

Yay for sleep!


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Trying to Slay the Insomnia Dragon



For several years, I've struggled with insomnia. At least once a week, sometimes nights in a rows. I can't fall asleep. The longest I've gone without more than a few hours of sleep is four nights. Even on non-insomnia nights, I wake up often and sometimes can't fall back asleep. I've tried meditation, breathing excercises, and a few other weird things. (Including a bizarre mat laden with tiny plastic spikes. Don't ask.) None of them helped. And I refuse to take medication, especially anything that has the potential for addiction. Besides, most don't work for me anyway. I can take something that knocks a "normal" person out cold, but for me it either does nothing or makes me edgy.

About three weeks ago, I started taking some vitamins and herbal supplement stuff in the hopes that they would help. After a few days, I found myself able to fall asleep with relative ease. It was wonderful. I would still wake up a few times each night, but I could fall back asleep without too much trouble. I thought I had found my miracle. The past two nights, I've regressed. Not sure why. Maybe I just need to adjust a thing or two, or increase my intake a bit. The trial and error part is necessary, but can be so taxing. I've looked into essential oils and think I could give some of those a try, though I've used some for other situations without much luck. It's so frustrating. If anyone has any suggestions for things that have worked for you or someone you know, please leave a comment. I would love a goodnight's sleep.

Next idea up for consideration: acupressure.

I think I'm going to wait till next Tuesday to open my shop. I need some packaging supplies and don't often have the car. I'm nervous and excited at the same time.




Saturday, March 7, 2015

A Shop to Shop At


I have an etsy shop. I have yet to find the secret to success. Over the past few days I've looked into setting up a "shop" on my blog simply using some PayPal buttons. I have it ready (just need to press the "big red button", so to speak). I think I'm going to ditch etsy and give this other idea a try. For now, I will have my hourglass pendants and signed paperbacks of my books. Quantities are limited until I get a feel for this new venture. If things go well, I will add more things and increase the stock. These items will only be shipped to the U.S. I may include ebooks at some point, which will be available internationally. I plan to officially open the shop next week, possibly on Tuesday.

I'm still trying to think of the next Super Fan fun. When I know, you'll know.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Fun With Cars


I hate doing/worrying about car stuff. Though those infernal machines are necessary, they cause headaches and lowered bank accounts. So, our most recent adventures have to do with our car registration. We're a bit late on getting it renewed, mostly because we couldn't quite afford it, (The windshield needed to be replaced too) but we had every intention of getting it done within the month. I was pulled over on Friday and given a citation because of it. The officer was very cordial and told me to get it done ASAP. Then yesterday morning as I was turning into the car place to get the safety and emissions done, I was pulled over again. Luckily, the officer was understanding and simply said to get it done. Now, these incidents are our own fault, but it's still a pain in the behind. Registration will be done today, thank goodness.

On a happier note, I ordered a paperback copy of each of my books over the weekend and will be signing them and putting them on my etsy shop. For now, it will be only one copy for each book. I haven't had a ton of success with selling stuff on etsy, so I didn't want to buy a bunch of books and have them sit on my shelf for eternity. Since they'll be signed, the prices will be a bit more than the prices on Amazon, but I think having an author's signature makes the book more special. If anyone is interested, please let me know. If enough people show interest, I'll consider ordering more.




Saturday, February 28, 2015

Super Fun


I just sent out the emails to my Super Fans for their exclusive sneak peek at Foretold chapter one. If you want to read it too, you still have a chance. If you join before next Saturday, I will give you the link to the chapter. The link will be removed on March 7.

I've been trying to think of what to do for the next round of Super Fan fun. If you have suggestions, please let me know.

My job is currently back on after more than a 6 month hiatus, so a lot of my time will be spent doing that. I still plan to get Foretold finished soon, but now the release date is kind of in limbo. Before summer is a high probability.

I hope.


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Cold That Would Not Leave


I've had a cold for the past week. I'm now in the Cough-My-Head-Off portion. I spent a good majority of the night coughing. My poor husband opted to sleep in the living room so he could get some sleep. (I offered to be banished to the couch, but he wouldn't allow it. Good man.) I don't get sick often, but when I do, it seems to linger to make up for that fact. I expect it to be gone by mid March...

On a happier note, I'm going to be getting ready for the first bit of Super Fan fun! There's still time to join before Saturday. And bring a friend!



Saturday, February 21, 2015

Remember the Name Game?


For those of you who have read Soulless, you still have a chance to participate in the Name Game, which is helping me pick the real name of Cress, the main character of the book. I've updated the entry method for your convenience. I've had a few entries already, but I need more to make this interesting. When I have a bunch of suggestions, I'll pick my favorites and then let everyone vote. The person with the most liked name will win something!

If you haven't read Soulless yet, the ebook is only $.99 on Amazon. The print book is currently $8.08.

I've been sick this last week with a cold, which itself is not fun, but I also suffer from chronic insomnia. Put them together and you have a tired, cranky, sniffly Kacie. Hopefully things will clear up soon. I'm going to start on some different supplements to help with the insomnia as well. I can't remeber the last time I was able to sleep more than a couple of hours at a time... (It's 3:00 am and here I am posting this. I'd much rather be sleeping)


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Sidetracked


I almost forgot to write a post. I was caught up in drawing a picture. I've been wanting to improve my portrait skills, so I started practicing yesterday. It's getting better, but I think I can still use some more practice. You can see what I did yesterday on my profile at deviantart.com

I suppose I'll just offer another reminder to join my Super Fan club. It's almost time for the first exclusive reveal!



Saturday, February 14, 2015

Happy Valentines Day! Or not...


The holiday that isn't really a holiday. Some people hate it with a passion. I was indifferent for many years, seeing as how I didn't have a significant other. I've mentioned before that I am a shy person, which was a stumbling block for dating. I won't go into the embarrassing details of how few dates I went on as a young adult, but during those years the only Valentines I got were from my parents and the students I worked with. I'm not saying they weren't appreciated, but it just wasn't the same. Now that I'm married to the most wonderful man in the world, Valentines Day still isn't that important. I love my husband no matter what day it is and I try to show that in my actions and with my words all the time. I prefer holidays that have a deeper meaning, though I do enjoy the candy.

My husband has to work all day today, so we did most of our celebrating a couple days early. On Thursday, we went to Olive Garden. (gift cards!) There was a mix-up with our seating and we were offered a free appetizer. We choose their lasagna fritta. It was DELICIOUS!!! Yesterday, I made a coconut cream pie for my hubby, which is his favorite dessert and we watched Tangled.  Sometime today when my hubby has a break from work, he's getting something simple for me. (Dove dark chocolate) Our budget won't allow much, but that's okay. We still love each other.

For those of you who hate Valentines Day, I hope you can enjoy your weekend anyway.

Only two more weeks until my Super Fan fun starts! Don't forget to join so you can get in on the action!