Home Sweet Motorhome

Hey y’all!  So, the last time I posted, it was a piece my husband wrote about scammers on Facebook Marketplace falsely advertising top-notch motorhomes and RV’s for ridiculously low pricing. 

Today, I’m writing because we finally made it happen.  Yes, we bought our motorhome!

This week has been so anxiety driven and action packed, I’m simply glad we were able to accomplish the enormous task. 

Hubby and I have been scouring Facebook Marketplace for what feels like months.  I swear to y’all, I was checking the site 5, 6, 7 times a day just to see if anything new had been added, and I was rechecking motorhomes and RV’s which we’d already read over deciding not to inquire.  Well, last week, hubby found this one, a 24ft with 2 sleeping areas. 

So, through the weekend I enquired with the seller, first making sure it was still available, exchanging numbers for better communication, and finally, arranging it so that we had a ride to go and look at the motorhome. 

On Monday, my dad and his wife agreed to take my husband, daughter, and myself to go and look at it; just under an hour to get there, and the same to get back.  The motorhome looked just as it did in its pictures, the interior is needing some work, but no more than we can handle, and my husband started it up.  It cranked over like a beast on the first try. 

On Tuesday, the guy selling it was nice enough to help us out a little further, and personally drove the motorhome to us though Hurricane Ida was making her way through.  I was browning some ground beef to make chili when I happened to look out our kitchen windows and saw our motorhome drive by on the next road over from ours. 

The only detail I don’t like about the motorhome interior is its carpet.  I hate carpet.  I hate carpet.  Did I mention, I hate carpet?

On Wednesday, after I finished with my scheduled classes for the morning, my husband and I tackled face first into the next project… ripping the carpet out.  We spent that afternoon and Thursday afternoon ripping carpet out and removing the trash accumulated and left behind by previous owners. 

Sorry, it’s not the best, clearest photo of the carpet before I tore it up, but you get the idea that it had to go.

On Friday, I admit I didn’t do anything with our motorhome.  Instead, I taught 3 scheduled classes, took a nice long nap, and then proceeded to do very little through the rest of the day.  Everyone needs a day off from working and I was more than exhausted. 

Same general area as previous photo, but after I ripped the carpeting out. We’re going to put down water resistant wood laminate.

I’m hopeful that next week we’ll be able to get it properly tagged and titled as well as install new flooring in it.  Once the new flooring is in, I can properly scrub everything inside, from top to bottom, then proceed with the details of minimizing our belongings.  We’re not hoarders, but we do have a lot of things, most of it being in the media department.

I said we had a lot of books.

So, everything has been a process, but we’re getting there… one day at a time.  I know it’ll all be worth it once we’re moved in and settled. 

As always, thanks for reading y’all!

March Mayhem

Hey y’all and good afternoon.  I hate that I haven’t posted, but I have honestly been trying and wanting to post all month, but the month turned into an emotional rollercoaster of anxiety for me, beginning with the unexpected passing of a friend of mine and my husband’s.  He was the sweetest guy, and like the rest of us, he couldn’t wait for my author copies to come.  I’m not sure which one of us was more excited for my book to be in print. 

The last really good day we all got to spend together, was just before he fell sick.  My husband and I spent the day over at their place, his husband was trimming my hair to prepare for my personal, quarantined photoshoot, for the cover of my book.  I changed outfits three times that day, and he complimented every outfit.  Between photo sessions, waiting for the outdoor lighting to change, we played a card game of ‘hand and foot’.  Him and his husband both taught me and my husband how to play when my husband and I moved into the neighborhood.

In Loving Memory

His passing wasn’t from Covid, although he had been sick with difficulty breathing, but he had COPD.  He had been repeatedly tested for Covid, several times, but all tests came back negative; for both him and his husband.  Unfortunately, because he didn’t have Covid, his hospital treatment left a lot of questions unanswered.  It was like his health wasn’t important enough to treat because he didn’t have Covid. 

It saddens me the most that he never got to see my book as a real book.  We were all patiently waiting to receive my author copies.  He was always insistent, “I want to buy a copy of your book, so you have that sale, but I want you to sign it for me.”  I always responded, “You will definitely get a signed copy of my book, but you’re not paying for it.”  Looks like I got my way after all; nine days after he left our world for heaven, my author copies were delivered to my front porch, and on St. Patrick’s Day, I opened them. 

The front cover of my book.
The back cover of my book.

While I want to upload and share my book reveal video, I’m still trying to figure out how to do so. Yeah y’all, I’m learning as I go. As soon as I am able to figure it out, I will surely post and share. Until then, thanks y’all for reading and I’ll be writing again soon.

‘A Boring Little Update’

Hey hey, how have y’all been?  Me, I’m taking things one day at a time.  Summer is not yet officially here, but the days are growing more and more humid with thunderstorms looming overhead creating a thick moisture in the air; like walking out your front door and into a sponge.  Though this weather won’t last the entire summer, I still see us using the hose a lot throughout the summer.

My daughter is taking summer school this year because she’s as good in math as I was at her age.  She absolutely despises math, yet she loves earning an allowance.  Basic addition compared to adding letters to the numbers.  I understand her hatred.  She’ll either get it enough to pass, or she’ll retake.  Her dad sits in and helps her, so it’s looking good that she’ll continue on to the 10th grade for next school year.

I took a little time off from writing, as writing an entire manuscript in four months is taxing.  However, I’ve been brainstorming which is now why I need to get back to writing, because otherwise I’m going mental trying to store it all.  With my manuscript currently in the editing phase, I’m moving forward, brainstorming a cover design, and going through my mental files for any additional material I may want to include in my book.  While I’m doing that, I’m also generating ideas for my next book “Y’all Didn’t Hear It from Me: Another Journal of Life Stories”.

Having said that, my husband and I were talking, and I want to celebrate my accomplishment once my 10 copies come.  Granted, my book won’t be to that stage until at least the end of this year, but I can begin planning for it now, right?  Why not, right?  We’re going to throw me a celebration party!  It may be holiday themed, or I might be able to pull it off of my own creative theme, but I’m going to celebrate.  Then, after the party, I’ll post the first vlog, me seeing my book for the first time.  I admit, it’s very exciting to think about.  I’m tickled pink!

Well, y’all, I think that’s it for now.  Is there anything y’all would like to hear about because my book is considered self-help/memoir.  I like being an ear for someone else in a situation.  Usually I can relate and I enjoy the input of others.

As always y’all, thanks for reading!

Thinking, Writing, and Reflecting About Chicken Soup for the Soul

Hey y’all!

I am a writer and because I am a writer, I think a lot.  A Lot.  I think about my past and I think about my future and all the things I want to do.  Most of it has to wait until after my daughter graduates from high school which will be in another three years, but at the same time, I can do many of the things I want to do now, in the present time, because I’ve been blessed with the ability to work from home, as an English teacher.

One of the things I want to do is publish.  I want this about as much as I’ve wanted everything else I’ve been blessed with in my life because I love writing so much.  I love sketching to, but writing allows me to bare a piece of my soul that I can’t do in creating artwork.  Yes, I know writing is just another form of artwork, but writing is also different from sketching.  In writing, I can talk about the many obstacles I’ve overcome and what I learned from those obstacles.  When I sketch, I create pictures that make me happy.  Writing also makes me happy, but differently than sketching does.

Someday, I want to see my written short stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul because Chicken Soup for the Soul is the most widely known nonfiction short story compilations book around the world.  I began reading them when I was just 14 years old.  I recommend then to anyone I know and everyone I meet.  I recommended Chicken Soup for the Girls Soul to my daughter’s best friend in gymnastics.  She’s a couple years younger than my daughter, but she loves to read, according to her grandparents.  Not only did I lend them my copy, but after reading the book and returning it to me, her grandmother went out and bought herself a copy of a more recent title, Chicken Soup for the Grandparents Soul.  I don’t know how often this happens to other people, but it was a first for me.

I’ve been writing and submitting short stories to them for the last two years and one thing I can say for sure is my ability to write is improving.  When I first started trying, yes, I wrote crap.  Boring and unacceptable for publication; and obviously not what they were looking for.  Now, two years later, reading my own work chokes me up, but maybe I’m just partial to my own work.  Rather than being my own worst critic, I’m over complimentary to myself.  I used to have my husband simply proofread my material, then I click the submit button and off it went to their inbox.  Now, I’ve improved the writing process, asking him to critique my material, not once, but twice.  The first critique is always for direction.  The second critique is to fix anything which doesn’t sound right, or doesn’t fit.  If and when he gives me an all-clear, I then ask him to proofread it for me to clear my grammatical mistakes.

I know publishing is a hit and miss no matter who you’re trying to publish with.  When it comes to Chicken Soup for the Soul, my single short story entry is only 1 in about 5000.  As of current, the only time I’ve ever received a personal message from Amy Newmark herself, it was to ask for my mailing address to mail me a couple signed books, per winning a book drawing.  It was an incredible experience, but nothing like I imagine it’s going to be when the day comes I receive an email, that my short story has been chosen for publication in a future title.

So far, I’ve submitted a short story to each of these future titles; ‘Laughter is the Best Medicine’, ‘Listen to Your Dreams’, ‘Stories About Christmas’, ‘Stories About Self-Care and Me Time’, and ‘You Go, Girl’.  The short story I wrote for ‘You Go, Girl’ is, in my opinion, my personal best.

In closing, I write to clear my head of the most concentrated thought swirling inside.  Chicken Soup for the Soul is my most favorite book series.  I can’t deny that and I won’t deny it.  I know my day will come, and when it does, I’ll laugh, I’ll cry, and I’ll jump up and down like a crazy high school girl finding out that the boy she likes, likes her back.  I’ll probably run to my neighbors and share with them this most exciting news of my life, but I am not going to deny myself the emotion of finally accomplishing what I’ve been working so hard to do since I began my writing journey.  I’ll tell you what else I’m not going to do, when sharing my news with my parents, who don’t completely understand the lengthy time and amount of patience writing a single story can take, regardless of story length, nor the hit and miss of publicating, I am not going to allow their happy-so-so attitude to clash with my over-the-moon-top-of-the-world-basking-in-personal-accomplished-glory attitude.  After all, this isn’t about them, this is about me.  They will be happy for me, supportive, and accepting, and that’s all I really can ask for.

Thank you for reading y’all!

 

Books to Teach the Truth in a World Full of Peer Pressure

Hey y’all!

I’ve been reading a book titled Reviving Ophelia- Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls, and I haven’t been able to put it down, reading it every chance I have.

It’s written by Mary Pipher who is a clinical psychologist with a Ph.D, and who has treated young women for over 20 years for problems above and beyond their mental abilities.  In other words, our children in today’s world are battling problems we wouldn’t believe because we don’t realize them.

I can remember when I was a young teenager.  Unfortunately, I can relate to some of the teenagers Mary speaks of in her book.  I wish I would have had access to this book when I was facing the issues, but to be honest, I would not have paid it any mind because while I loved to read and learn new things (mostly self-taught), it looks like another school reference book and uninteresting to a young teenage girl who prefers to read books like The Babysitter’s Club, and Goosebumps.

I’ve found reading Reviving Ophelia to be like reading anything from Chicken Soup for the Soulunderstanding and inspirational.  I wish I would’ve also had more access to Chicken Soup for the Soul during my youth because I might not have been so lost finding my way.

I couldn’t talk to anyone in school because my fellow classmates were either judging me and teasing me based on my outward appearance, overall quietness, and for the one person I did hang out with.  I didn’t want a lot of friends, but I wanted to at least establish an acquaintanceship with them.  In reality, we were all facing the same unknown territory–peer pressure and growing up.  We were no longer children, but we weren’t adults either, and our parents were just as lost as we were because even the world they knew as children had changed.

For example, I’ve mentioned several times in the past about how grateful I am for Georgia Cyber Academy and the online K12 program.  Kids are mean, vicious, and judgmental, but the problem isn’t with the kids, it’s in their homes where their parents or the structure is absent.

The summer before my 8th grade school year, we moved to the next town over, across the county line.  I began the school year as a new student, but luckily with a couple new friends I’d met over the summer, down at the park, before school started.  I still maintained a relationship with my best girlfriend from my old school until that changed after I moved back due to reasons outside my knowledgeable understanding, and way above my maturity level.  When I moved back, I learned my best friend started a rumor about me as a way to increase her popularity points.  I understand why she did it; she didn’t have any friends outside of me and her home life was confusing.

Her mother yelled at me once for not calling after she was suspended from school for a week for threatening the school system.  If I’d been the one to threaten the school, my life would have been hell, as it was, her mother took her shopping at the mall everyday that week.

I didn’t have it easy at home, but I didn’t go around spreading rumors either.  I decided staying to myself was a better option.  That’s why I started homeschooling, because there’s not enough structural support inside the schools anymore.  Every student is lost, confused on where to go and in what direction they’re going in.  When grown-ups can’t help, books can–if you’re willing to read them.

Let’s listen to what our children have to say to us, then assist and educate them because they’re lost without our guidance.  The world is much different from when we were growing up, but they can’t help that, they’re kids.  We need to open our minds to see and understand what they see.  They can’t see the world the same way we do because of their innocence.  Remember that.

Thanks for reading y’all!