Monday, April 26, 2010

An Innate Flaw

Grr! Sometimes I really hate it when other people are right. It means so much more work for me.

When I'm writing, I spend a lot of time writing dialogue to get it out of my head, mapping actions so they flow in a consistent order and establishing background so charater motivation makes sense. Unfortunately, these things don't always make for the best reading, and a lot of the time, it takes much wiser eyes than mine to recognize when paragraphs, passages, pages don't belong in the finished product.

A lot of my writing goes into the slush pile, gets deleted or gets saved in notes. It's never easy to let these things go. They represent time, effort and memories that I don't always want to let go of. But I'm grateful for the people in my writers' support group who push me and make my writing better.

So thanks for seeing me--flaws and all--and helping me write a better story in the end.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Five Easter Favorites (a little more than slightly late)

So I've been a little swamped since getting back from Chicago. I finally uploaded my Easter pictures. Here's a recap:
  1. The Food—Portillos was great, Gwen's peanut butter brownie thing was fantastic and all the traditional Easter treats were accounted for. Mmmm. My mouth is watering just thinking about getting another Italian beef sandwich when I go back this summer.
  2. Aunt Chris' Hoppin' Easter Bash—We played sibling rivalry bingo, had a special visit from the Easter Bunny and got to spend time together. My aunt does such a great job putting this all together. Our family is huge, but Aunt Chris makes sure each one of us feels special during the holidays.
  3. Beating Tom (at a game, not violently)—Have no fear. I beat Tom. He did manage to win a round or two of Skipo, but I won overall. And I creamed him at Bang. My poor sister got stuck in the middle and refuses to play with us anymore.
  4. The Polish Museum of America—Yes, I sacrificed watching the opening game and got a lot of great research done. My mom even came along and helped me go through more than a dozen old books, including one all in French. How cool is it that I got to read Casimir Pulaski's letter to his sister all about having dinner with the Washington's in the original language he wrote it in?
  5. Getting Away from Washington—I don't get to spend enough time with my family. Every time I go for a visit, it's hard to leave. Babies are getting so big, cousins are growing up and life is moving on. I love living in Washington, but sometimes it's nice to be reminded of what's really important.

10 Board Books Even Adults Should Own

Due to the recent insurgence of my friends who are procreating, I have been buying baby shower gifts like nobody's business. So if you're like me and need some baby books on hand, here are my 10 favorite:

Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

The Very Hungry Caterpillarr by Eric Carle

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin

Color Zoo by Lois Ehlert

I Love You Stinky Face by Lisa Mccourt

The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

Chicka Chicka ABC by Bill Martin

Fifteen Animals by Sandra Boynton

Oh, David! by David Shannon

The Pigeon Loves Things That Go! by Mo Willems

And the two books about children's literacy I always recommend to parents:

100 Best Books for Children by Anita Silvey

The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease

Monday, April 5, 2010

Happy Baseball Season!

My sentiments exactly!

(Easter report to come.)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Friday Five (a day early)

Because I'll be at work, in the air and with my family, I wanted to post a Friday Five on Thursday. I'm really excited to be going to Chicago this weekend, and I just couldn't help but post the five things I'm looking forward to the most.
  1. The Food—Portillos, here I come! My sister is also making some peanut butter brownie thing that sounds fantastic, and I'm a fan of those traditional Easter treats deviled eggs and ham. I probably won't have time for Chicago-style pizza, but my digestive system will thank me for that later.
  2. Aunt Chris' Hoppin' Easter Bash—Every year my aunt goes all out for Easter, but I'm never able to be there. This year, I get to enjoy all the family festivities first-hand and not just hear about it on Facebook. Plus, one of my cousins is having a baby soon, and I can't wait to see her big, pregnant belly, especially since I was away at school when she had her first one.
  3. Beating Tom (at a game, not violently)—I love my sister's boyfriend, I really do. But he needs to learn that talking smack and actually winning are two different things. He may talk the talk, but I've got the skills to walk the walk.
  4. The Polish Museum of America—I get to finish up my research on Casimir Pulaski and talk to the experts at the largest Polish history/culture museum outside Poland. Despite my Polish ancestry, I've never actually been there before, and going somewhere new in the city is always fun. Unfortunately, my appointment at the museum is at the same time as the Sox's opening game so I won't be able to do both. Look at the sacrifice I am making for knowledge!
  5. Getting Away from Washington—I work for a health care reform organization, and things have been a little nuts lately. I mean, I don't get it, it's not like there's anything really big going on right now. My head is hurting trying to understand the new legislation and help answer questions. Reporters have been getting way too much of my time lately, and now I get to spend it on more important things like my family.
I plan on this being the best weekend ever. Even if it's 50 degrees out and they lose my luggage, nothing is going to stop me from having a blast. I just hope you weekend will be as good as mine.