Pandemic 4th of July Weekend

For Jeff’s day off (day before and part of day after, although he still worked all three days), we headed to Wisconsin, where we have family, and where we plan to retire in the fall.

It was our first time traveling outside of our county since the 3rd of March. We were somewhat nervous, doing so with Covid-19 cases all over the place, but, hey! we’d spent the night in a hotel during our power outage last month! And we’ve even started doing our own grocery shopping, still before 7AM.

Some highlights (disclaimer: I rarely show family photos on FB):

Sparklers with the grandkids who used them to cast Harry Potter spells. And a few store-bought crackly fireworks.

Getting to see our AZ son, last seen over Christmas break.

Uncle’s gift of walkie talkies, and watching the three grands follow after each other all around the house one behind the other, speaking into, and answering each other, through them, before they figured out they didn’t have to see each other to be heard.

Cheering on the 8-year-old each time she caught the frisbee tossed to her by Grandad.

The grandboy, after seeing his first firefly caught by Mom, announced, “I will call him Fred.” And, as we all know, once you know someone’s name, he is thereafter easily distinguished from all his relatives and friends.

Adult time: Beer tasting and watching “Hamilton”.

Realizing it’s a house seller’s market in Wisconsin, with houses getting contracted within hours of being listed. Also realizing how much I like our clean and maintained and open present house in Michigan.

Missing family before we even said good-bye.

Daring to stop at rest area oasis, and bathing afterwards in the van with hand sanitizer. There may have been few people there, but most didn’t wear masks, nor practiced social distancing.

Wondering if police were showing the public what defunding would look like, with one police car seen while we traveled through three states, and that at an accident. (We saw three others traveling through Michigan.) It was a scary and dangerous ride home with all the weavers and speeders, and very few vehicles with working blinkers.

Public fireworks were canceled this weekend all across the nation. We got home well before neighbors started shooting off illegal fireworks in a 360° circle around our house. Noisy, like at a free for all rifle firing range. Exciting. Pretty. Nerve-wracking.

Happy to see family. Glad to be safely home.

God bless us, every one.

Book Giveaways of The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island

It’s officially summertime! That means time for summer reading, especially on those days you can’t get outside to play.

Below are four opportunities to win a copy of The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island by Sandy Carlson. {humbly bowing} The book is set on the Michigan tourist location of Mackinac Island, where no motorized vehicles are allowed.

Short synopsis: Arianna just finished 7th grade and has to go to Mackinac Island for the summer with her parents and paraplegic brother to earn money for his upcoming surgery. By way of their inherited powder horn, she discovers she can time travel to 1793. But so can her brother. Only there, in the past, Luc can walk and run, and doesn’t want to return to the uncertain present.

The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island was published in March, and leveled at U by F&P Guided Reading. If you win and live in the USA, you will receive a print copy. If you win and live outside of the USA, you get an ebook copy. Good luck to all, and happy reading!

First Chance: Tracey A. Wood’s Blog this week only: Tracey’s Blog

Second Chance: Comment on my (this) blog post below between June 25 and July 6, 2017 for one winner.

Third chance: Goodreads Giveaway, June 28 – July 6, 2017.

The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island by Sandy Carlson

or Goodreads Giveaway

Fourth chance: Go to the book’s new FaceBook page and like and comment between June 25 and July 6, 2017: FaceBook Book Page to The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island

Fifth…anytime opportunity: And in case you can’t wait for a giveaway, or just missed getting one, you can find The Powder Horn of Mackinac Island in print or ebook at:

 

And FINALLY (if you made it this far), if you want to take a look at some photos of Mackinac Island, check out my Pinterest page: Pinterest – Mackinac Island Favorites

 

Time, Priorities and Discipline for Writers

Literature Blogs 

I missed the last day of the WriteOnCon. Out of town. Out of internet availability. I have had nearly a week to catch up. I listened to some of the talks, but now that I have them just sitting there, waiting for me, I have allowed myself to get distracted by other things in my life – big things, like cleaning turtles from our very own river oil spill, to the more mundane, like mowing the lawn, doing laundry, or meal prep. Each of those things are important in their own rights. (Oh, yeah. I forgot to mention making and canning the salsa today before the tomatoes overripe.)

Discipline and priorities involve decisions in our every-day lives. We only have twenty-four hours in a day, and we do need to eat and sleep and get a bit of exercise; besides that, most people need day jobs in order to eat and sleep with a roof overhead.

How serious are you when it comes to writing? Are raw writing (first drek-drafts), or revising, or learning more about the craft and the market, priorities for you? Or do you say you’ll get to it “someday soon, as soon as xx is over”? (In my opinion, the only “xx” excuse to keep yourself from discipline, is family, especially your children. They grow up way too fast to ignore them.) So… be disciplined. Write!