...And a Happy New Year

It's been a busy holiday season.  I spent a lot of time preparing for Christmas, enjoying Christmas, and recovering from Christmas, with a few other things added in for good measure.  Here are a few highlights:

1. I read books.  Almost one a day!  And I've thoroughly enjoyed them all.  I polished off SLAYERS by C.J. Hill and immediately went out to grab the sequel.  I finished them both in under 24 hours.  If you are looking for a good YA book featuring dragon slayers, I highly recommend it.  I also read Philippa Gregory's CHANGELING (YA), which was an interesting blend of historical fantasy.  For a change of pace, I switched over to Jeffrey Deaver's OCTOBER LIST.  I wasn't sold on the whole telling-the-story-backwards idea until the last 1/4 of the book.  Then, I decided I loved it.  I've moved on to Kristi Cook's MIRAGE (YA sequel to HAVEN), which I've been meaning to read for a while.  I'm half-way through it, and am enjoying it.  Believe it or not, all these books were Christmas presents I hadn't previously read, which makes it extra awesome. 

2.  I learned to make toffee from my husband's grandmother.  I miss the days that my grandmother would show me how to cook, and it was a pleasant blend of new and old memories.  GiGi has the recipe memorized, and in traditional grandmother fashion, there was a lot of "stir it until it looks/feels right" and "until it turns this color."  My first batch tastes a little over-browned (read burnt), but I did it! 

3. I closed out work projects, and decided NOT to do any more "work" this year.  And take a right and proper vacation.  I haven't had a completely non-working vacation since before my baby boy was born (over 18 months ago), since I'm a consultant (and you never know when your next job's gonna be, so you work when you can get it).  Not only does it feel divine to sit and read for fun, and write for fun, and watch chick flicks (and finally get around to the MORTAL INSTRUMENTS movie), but it feels a bit like I'm playing hookey.  And I love it. 

4.  I pulled out my sewing machine and made some soft books for baby boy.  I missed the hum of the motor and the rhythm of the needle and it felt good to make something.  And it also felt nice to sit in a room, by myself, with only my thoughts.  Bliss!

5.  I broke 29K on my new WIP (Work in Progress/novel).  I've given it the working title code name "EASY MARK."  I don't know if it's a good fit, but it's better than Untitled WIP.  I've been trying to work out my plotting and scenes while washing dishes, folding laundry, and prepping dinner so that when I find some quiet time to write, that's all I have to do - write.  And it seems to be working pretty well for me.

This is my last post of the year, and 2013 was a good year.  I'm looking forward to seeing what 2014 brings! 

***Wishing you a very happy and safe New Year!***