Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Birthday Q&A

I know, I know...still no pictures. They are coming. I promise. Here's a sneak preview of what you're looking forward to:
The rings...

The couple

The bride and bridesmaids
(Margaret, Sarah, and MEEEE)

Two families united. ;)
(our parents, the bride and groom, and Jesse's parents)

Goin' in for the kiss. *drum roll*

It LOOKS like we flew Sarah out to Hawaii to take this picture...
but this is actually the Puget Sound, right across from
Seattle and about five minutes from where I live!

The couple again. ;) Aren't they so sweet!

THAT ought to up the number of views on my blog. ;)

But...this may shock you...the apology for lack of wedding pictures is NOT what this blog post is about. Have you gotten over the heart attack yet? If not, re-read the title.

Yep, it took me almost a MONTH to get these questions answered. Don't judge. I bet you've had "those months" where things just pile up and you aren't able to keep up with all those commitments. Sympathy is appreciated. ;) Hey, I could have waited until my nineteenth birthday post to answer them. Count your blessings.

However, now, without further ado...I give you the questions people asked me (in the order they were published) on my birthday post:

>>Rebekah M. asked:

If you had the opportunity to see what God had in store for you in 5 years, would you take it?, probably. I mean, it would be my curiosity fighting my love for surprises. #welcometomylife 
I have to say, my curiosity would PROBABLY win. I would cross my fingers and hope that He's come back to take us home by then. Imagine getting transported immediately into the rapture! Wouldn't that be awesome! (Besides, need I add that whoever gets elected as president this year will have had their term expire by then. Just saying.)

Could you see yourself still writing books in ten years?
Oh yeah, totally. It may only ever be a hobby, but since I'm not planning on having a career anyways, that works just fine for me. If other full time moms can pull of being an author (there's lots of them out there....I've even met a few) then so can I. ;)

>>Mary H. asked:

Would you rather have to say everything in rhyme, or sing everything you want to say?
I love this question. XD For me, I actually sing a lot of the stuff I say, and some of the time it rhymes anyway. *bows* Yes, thank you, thank you. Probably speaking in rhythm and rhymes since I find rhyming more fun than dimes. Oh goodness. That was a stretch. Oooook, next question.

Do you like cake or ice cream better?
ICE CREAM. By far. Cake doesn't even come close. Except when it's chocolate cake. Like the seven layer type Costco sells. Then it's a close second. ;)

What is one question you dread people asking? 
There's a couple. But the "future you" questions are the worst. 
"Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years?" (Usually my answer is a blank stare for about ten seconds. Meanwhile I'm THINKING "Absolutely nowhere obviously" or "hopefully God comes back before I have to answer this". Then, I give them the foolproof answer with a triumphant smirk, "Exactly where God wants me to be" while thinking "Ha! Swallow that and CHOKE ON IT.")
Or the awkward "current relationship" questions. 
"Are you getting to know anybody right now? If not, WHY not?" (My answer to this is usually a crisp "No" while hoping they can read my body language and leave me alone. I firmly believe that that question should NEVER be asked to people under the age of twenty. I mean, REALLY.)

Would you rather own a pet hedgehog or a chinchilla?
A dragon. I want a dragon. But if I MUST chose between those two equally adorable little critters, I'd probably choose a hedgehog. Why? Oh, COME ON, obviously so I could use it in self defense. *rolleyes* ("Come one step closer and I'LL THROW THIS SPIKY BALL OF CUTENESS AT YOUR FACE!")

If you had to choose between cutting off all your hair (and never having it grow back) or dying it green (and never having it change back), which would you chose?
I'd probably dye it green. A dark green. And then pretend to be a wood nymph. ;) 

What time period would you live in if you had to chose one? (And no, it can't be the present)
During the ministry of Jesus. I know that's kind of cliché, but really, how cool would it be to meet Jesus and the twelve disciples? Seriously.

>>Tiffany asked:

What was the first thing that ran through your head when you woke up and remembered it was your birthday?
Well, the first was "Oh my word, I'm an ADULT!" then "Hmm...this doesn't feel that different." then "Hey, I can get a drivers license now!" then *groan* "Oh, I have to vote. WHY? I WANT MY CHILDHOOD BACK AGAIN!" And then I got my coffee and presents and the temporary depression was over. Until I had to register to vote.

>>Faith P. asked:

What has been your favorite age thus far?
I liked being fifteen. But I got to learn how to drive when I was sixteen. That was pretty awesome. And I finished school when seventeen. So yeah, those three. ;)

How old were you when you started blogging?
Fourteen. Almost fifteen.

What blog did you follow first?
Other then family member blogs? My friend from church, Madison, and Mrs. Marlow's blog where I "met" Jesseca and Emily.

What is your favorite birthday present you have ever received? Favorite of the past three years?
Well, I got a copy of "The Silent Blade" and a Star Wars theme iPhone case this year. Those were awesome. Definitely my favorites of the last three years...
But favorite of ALL? Oh goodness. Probably getting a cloth bound hardback copy of "The Little Princess" from my dad for my tenth birthday was pretty special. (I still have that book, btw.)

>>Jesseca D. asked:

What is your favorite memory of the past year?
Going to Cannon Beach with our future inlaws and watching Jesse propose next to Haystack rock. ^_^

What is something the Lord has taught you this last year?
No matter how bad things seem to be, no matter how fast our nation seems to be running downhill, no matter how many innocent people are killed every minute...God is still completely and totally in control. I need to put everything in His hands and trust Him to take care of it all. And know He will.

Favorite fictional character you've met this year? (One of your own or someone else's.)
Oh my goodness. There are SO MANY. I just finished reading Abi's book which gave me at least three favorite characters right there (Gemma, Josiah, and Hollie). But I also really love all my own characters from both "Ocean Mist" and "The Princess & I". I really can't choose a single favorite character. Not ever.

If you had the chance to travel all around the US visiting every state or traveling to Europe, which would you chose?
Traveling all over the US and visiting each of you awesome friends. But I want to go to the British Isles too...please? Just the British Isles? I won't ask for anything else. And I'll walk the dog. PLEASE?

If you were alive during WWII, would you rather be:
a) an underground contact in Nazi-controlled Austria
b) an OSS agent working undercover in Berlin, or
c) the pilot of a fighter plane flying over Nazi-controlled Paris?
Oh wow. Being a spy would give me serious awesome points. But I've always wanted to fly. So probably option "c". Good question Jesseca. ;) 

>>Julia R. asked:

Last time you flossed? *runs away snickering*
*crickets chirping* 
*moment of silence*
Two minutes ago. :)

Hope you had fun reading the outlandish/thoughtful/funny questions and my answers. It was actually pretty fun to answer these questions. TOTALLY DOING IT AGAIN NEXT YEAR. :D
Thanks again for being patient! The pictures will be worth the wait I promise! :)

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

In Which Your Curiosity About a Certain Wedding is Satisfied

They make such a sweet pair. *sighs happily*
Yup. My sister is in fact married now. HUGE SURPRISE. (<- sarcasm there people) Now to answer the FAQ.

How are you doing?
Great. Really. I think Sarah is very happy. (It's sometimes hard to tell, she is an INTJ) And Jesse is an awesome brother-in-law. He loves God, has a sense of humor, and is handsome. They make a great couple. I'm super excited for them, and happy for Sarah and Jesse both. My sister picked a great guy, and Jesse found a wonderful girl to fall in love with. :) *contented sigh* I look forward to their future together. ;) 

Do I feel like I've lost a sister? Or gained a brother?
Well, a little of both. Because they're moving away to Georgia *distant sobbing* I feel like I gained a brother, then lost both of them right after the honeymoon. BUT THEY WILL RETURN. Thankfully, Jesse is a physical therapist, so he'll be able to find a job in our area really easily. The only reason they're staying in Georgia right now is that fact that he needs some experience for future jobs and this job provided him exactly that.

How long are they going to be in Georgia?
A few years for sure... But I have every expectation that they will be moving up here shortly after that. :)

Did you cry at all during the wedding?
NO. Ha! I think I was too excited about the marriage itself to feel sad about her leaving us. Even so, I still haven't cried about her leaving. I'm sad, obviously, but I don't express my sadness in tears.

What was your favorite part about the wedding?
Seeing my sister get married. :) Also, a sweet older lady in our church fed us delicious things before the wedding ceremony (like CHOCOLATE. *happy dance* Seriously, people, that should be a wedding tradition: feed the wedding party chocolate) and I got to have my hair done professionally. That was fun. Plus, you know, all the social stuff makes me happy. ^_^ Friends and family from all over came up and across the state and from other states to see the ceremony.

Least favorite part?
Well, there wasn't really any least favorite part. I loved it all. Although, the pictures were a little painful on the feet and very hot. Which made for glorious photos, but very uncomfortable for the people having to stand still and smile for hours at a time. Also, I sang a song during the ceremony with my dear friend Kathryn S. But that was more nerve-wracking than anything.

What's it like having a sister married now?
AWESOME. I'm so happy and excited!!!! It is SO MUCH FUN having a sister married. Weird, yes. I mean, a third of my room disappeared into suitcases and flew off to a distant state. Sarah is no longer going to be around the house reading or giving sage advice about which books she would recommend and editing my stories or blog posts. We'll face time and text and e-mail (Thanks to the advantages of our advanced tech these days)'s not the same.

Is it hard?
Not yet. I say that because it takes awhile for things to sink in for me. My older brother left to take seminary classes in Wisconsin, and it took about four months for it to really hit me that he was gone. But it's not like she died or anything. They'll visit us, we'll visit them. I think its harder for my older sister Margaret. She and Sarah were really close. Both of them were best friends forever, sharing everything from a bedroom to clothes to wordless, expressive communication. (Seriously, if you were deaf, you could get a lot out of dad's sermons by just watching their faces) Now, Sarah's best friend is Jesse.

Whoa, no shouting necessary guys! Sheesh. I have a VERY GOOD excuse. The photographer hasn't given us the CD with all the pictures on them. Sometime soon I'll give you a whole post, just on the wedding pictures, to satisfy all your cravings for wedding pictures. There may even be a few video clips. Yep, I'm that nice. ;P

There you have it. Part one of wedding posts. ;) Part two will come as soon as we get pictures back from the photographer. I PROMISE.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Purposeful Pages: September

Purposeful Pages Meme

The time has come for another Purposeful Pages post. (I know, lovely alliteration right? Comes of having one of the hosts being a PK...alliteration is sort of ingrained in us...since our dads use it so often in sermons. ;P)
This link-up is something I look forward to doing each month, as I hope you look forward to reading it. Each set of questions makes me dig deeper into my faith (why I believe what I believe) and some of them are just for your entertainment (*bows* Yes, thank you, thank you) and others have to do with the crazy awesome world of authors and book dragons (yes that's totally a thing. Don't you dare question my judgment).
So dive right in and try to survive my somewhat longwinded answers to what you MAY think are simple questions. ;)
1: How have you been growing spiritually this month? What has God been teaching you?
Ooo...this question is hard to answer. I've experienced most of my spiritual growth developing over longer periods of time. However, I would definitely say that I have been growing closer to God throughout my teen years especially. Does that count as an answer? Not really? Well, OK. Let me try again. 
I've been growing spiritually this month, but in small ways. No blinding lights on the way to Tacoma. ;) 
God has been teaching me that no matter how bad this world is, He is still in control. He holds us all in the palm of His hand. I need to trust in His sovereignty. 
2: When you’re under stress, what actions do you take that help calm you and keep you sane?
There's a couple things I do to stay calm. Some of them are a little quirky, but then, so am I. So.
>Write a scene in my story where the heroine takes out pent up frustration on a handy sibling (then, after reading it later, I delete the scene because I feel sorry for the sibling ;)
>Go outside, nice and far away from the house so I don't freak out 
my family, (one of the pluses of living on ten acres) and give a nice, long scream
>Bury myself beneath my blankets and listen to music on my iPod until I fall asleep
>Banish myself to my room and read until my eyes cross
>Pretend nothing is the matter and talk like an idiot to anyone within hearing range (I'm sorry ma friends)
>Sit at my mom's feet until she feels obligated to massage my shoulders
Uh...not sure how much those things HELP, but it's what I do when stressed. 
3: Who are some people that inspire you, and in what ways do they do that?
Corrie Ten Boom has been a heroine of mine ever since reading her story in "The Hiding Place" when I was ten. (I know how old was because the whole reason I read the book was because it had the word 'ten' on the cover XD) Her steadfast faith, and honesty when her faith wasn't as strong as it should have been, have been a huge example to me throughout the years.
Then of course, there's Ester from the Bible, and Ruth...and Mary, the mother of Jesus. 
This is going to sound really cliche, but I've always found my mom to be a source of inspiration. After all, not only does she have to put up with ten crazy kids and a husband who is a pastor, but as a pastor's wife, she has to be kind and understanding to everyone in our church and people in the homeschooling circles we run in. And, on top of all that, she manages to educate her own kids and help us grow into a future generation of godly leaders. People have called her "Super Mom" and have asked her too many times to count "HOW DO YOU DO IT?" You know what she says? "I don't, God does. Only by His grace am I the mother I am." 
I mean it with my whole heart when I say that I want to be a mom just like her. Seriously.
4: Have you learned any tricks this past month that have helped you in your blogging journey?
I CAN CHANGE THE HTML ON MY BLOG'S TEMPLATE! How did I not know how to do this?
5: What is it about a book that makes you keep on reading? If you’re a writer, how can you  incorporate that into your own books?
 Action and emotion. Trust me, I'm working on it. Also, good characters and their development is always important to me when I'm reading a book for the first time. Don't ask my betas how the action and emotion are coming. Just don't. 
6: What’s a book cover (or album, movie, etc.) that describes your life right now, and why?
Are there any book covers about weddings and editing? What about the crazy hectic life of a pastor's daughter who writes on the side? No? Ok, obviously the media has a huge hole in it somewhere. Somebody fix that please.
7: Do you have a song in mind that you’d consider your current theme song? (Or a book, movie, TV show, etc.)
"At Your Feet" by Casting Crowns and "Lead Me, Lord" by Yours Truly. 
8: If you’re a writer, how do you see yourself incorporated (most of the time unknowingly) inside your stories?
Usually as the main character. *sheepish smile* Yep, even the guy main characters. Don't laugh. Every character I make have at least two things in common with me. Even the villains. 

9: How have you seen aspects of God’s character through other people recently?
A lot of people have been gracious to me last month. Those at church who have volunteered to help with wedding stuff, my crew of awesome editors who not only give me advice on stuff to change, but aren't afraid to give me a thumbs up and encouragement on the parts they like. 
Having an older sister in love, (an older sister who rarely shows any affection whatsoever that now hugs her guy) is a little weird, although a lot of the relationship has been long-distance, so it hasn't been TOO awkward. Thank goodness Christ isn't awkward about His love for us. ;) 
There's been a few friends who have been very forgiving about all  my crazy, sleep deprived behavior for the last couple weeks as the wedding gets closer, but that kind of goes with gracious, so.
10: How long, on average, does it take you to put together a blog post? Are you the morning person working at 5 am, the afternoon blogger, or the night owl up until midnight trying to throw things together?
It really all depends on what my blog post is about. Tags usually take the longest, because not only am I answering a ton of questions which can be a task all in itself, but I also have to find pictures to sprinkle throughout and other blogs to tag and links to copy and paste. Those posts usually take over half an hour. 
If it's just a rant, or copying and pasting story chapters or poemsI have already written in my documents, posts can take as little as five minutes. 
Usually, I write posts in the afternoon or evening, but schedule them for nine in the morning. So if you see a post of mine  *cough*likethisone*cough* published at nine in the morning... it was scheduled. :) 

Did you make it all the way through? Congratulations!! *applauds loudly* You ought to get a prize or something. *shoves cookies, donuts, and cups of coffee/tea/lemonade at you all* There, that should cover everybody. Oh, hold on *adds sour patch and waffles* THAT should cover every one. ;) You're welcome. Have a great day!

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Editing, Roller Coasters, and a Birthday

Hello all and welcome to the month of September.

*screams hysterically*


I wake up one day and find that summer is almost past, my sister is getting married in TEN DAYS, and I'm an ADULT!!

I don't know about you, but my month has been nothing short of awesome...but a kind of in a bittersweet way, because, well, summer is nearing its end. August has been my favorite month of the year ever since I actually picked a favorite...which was like five years ago, and now it's over. :(

Here's what has happened to me during August:

As you probably know by now, there's been a lot of wedding preparations going on up here. Mostly buying candles, decorations, and brownies (since Sarah's not a huge fan of cake. And who would take cake over BROWNIES?? Especially brownies with ice cream...but I digress.)
My parents celebrated their 25th wedding anniversary, which I was kind of in charge of. Which was kind of scary. But, hey, I pulled it off (with a lot of help from grandparents, siblings, cousins, and aunts) that was good. :)
Also, we've been celebrating a handful of birthdays. My mom (who is now officially twenty-five ;) my sister Margaret (she's twenty??? How did that amount of time go by so fast?) my cousin Jubi (who is six now) and the very end of the month, on August 30th, I became an adult. I don't FEEL that old, but boy, something about the number 18 is a little intimidating.
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Not sure how much of that is true...but I AM August at least that part. ;)
Guys, guess what. I got contacts. O.O Not sure what I think of them so far, except that it makes driving in non-subscription sunglasses a lot easier. ;) I can now actually READ the big "STOP" word on stop signs without glasses perched upon yon pointed thing. Still, I've worn glasses since I was tenish, so walking around with nothing on mah face still feels weird. (That, and having to shove things into my eyes...also weird, and all my carefully engrained Jedi reflexes protest to the invasion each morning.)
For my sister's bachelorette party, my two older sisters, their best friend (and the piano player for the wedding as well as a fellow blogging friend of mine and person who goes to our church) and I all drove out to an amusement park. This particular amusement park we all had fond memories of from our childhood. "Enchanted Village", now known as "Wild Waves", was last frequented by me at least seven years ago. I was so excited to go back and create new memories...although a lot of the rollercoasters were smaller than I remembered them. Here's a reenactment of a favorite ride we did:
Back then...

...and now. Some things never change. ;)
I learned one important thing from the trip (other than the fact that I have a very strong stomach and can therefore handle pretty much every rollercoaster you might throw at me. Figuratively, not literally. ;) Never say older sisters are boring. They WILL prove you wrong
Heading out...we look like we could be
spies or something with all of us in our
sunglasses. :)

The teacup ride. (a.k.a the spin-yourself-around-as-fast-as-humanly-possible-without-loosing-your-lunch ride.)

The carousal...because, what's a theme park without one?
It's the ultimate, classic ride. ;) Plus, #horses. :)
(Also, check out mah face with no glasses! O.O)

The Pirate ship ride. Unfortunately, Sarah didn't want to risk sitting on the we sat towards the middle (which was incredibly boring). Don't worry, I braved the edge later in the day and fully conquered it. ;)

This is Madi, me, Sarah, and Margaret

Because we didn't see that sign on the tree that said "Do not climb on the dragon" until AFTER the picture was taken. Yeah. Whoops.

We found out that none of us were King Arthur.
I was a little disappointed.


I named him ChocoLatte.
And because chocolate and coffee are both awesome.
Need I mention that fact? 

A couple handsome dudes perched by and watched us eat our lunch. I think they were jealous. ;)

Oh yeah, THIS is what I call a ROLLER COASTER.
And points to Margaret for being brave enough to join me. }:)

No, I didn't buy all these. Sorry. ;)

Ahh, I love these girls. <3

Me n' my sis. Is she worried? Don't ask.
It was probably my fault. ;)

I did not get enough reading done this month. Instead, I worked away at wedding stuff, my parents 25th anniversary, and editing. But more on that later. However, I did pick up some awesome free reads (thank you mah friends who tell me about these deals. ;) Which are below:



I think I maybe wrote two chapters in "Ocean Mist"? But hey, I got a lot of editing done, and even added a whole scene in "The Princess & I" per request from one of my editors. (Ya know who ya are) It involves a cooking pan and a tree. B-) Besides that, I made some changes in the first couple chapters, and in doing so, will have to make some changes to future chapters. *sigh* Ah, yes, the never ending job. But, I have hopes of finishing both "The Princess & I" as well as "Alice & Alyssa" by Thanksgiving. But we'll see. :) Right now, I'm focusing on getting over the wedding and staying on top of the editors advice. Which can be tricky say the least.
Favorite Quotes I Found During August:

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Favorite Blog Posts:
Goals I Reached:
1. Finish writing "The Princess & I" (*gasps and cheering*)
Yep folks, I reached a grand total of ONE goal accomplished this month. *hides face* But, I have to say, some of the other goals were NOT MY FAULT (to quote Han Solo). For example, I haven't finished editing my books yet because I'm waiting for my editors to finish. And I told them there wasn't a huge time pressure. So.
Goals for September:
1: Edit "The Princess & I" as well as "Alice & Alyssa"
2: Finish writing "Ocean Mist"
3: Write two poems
4: Doggone it girl, write those book reviews already!!
5: Be a bridesmaid *smiles sweetly* #firsttimeever
How was your month? Anything spectacular happen? (Anything MORE spectacular than roller coasters? Cause if so, I salute you...and I want to hear what it could possibly be.) Having editing troubles? (I feel your pain) Advice? (PLEASE GIVE)
Curious about that extra scene I added? (Good, now you'll HAVE to buy the book. }:) *evil laughter*)

Blog Tour for Project Canvas!! *cue intense celebration*

GUYS, I couldn't be more excited to share about this incredible book that is going to be available for you to get your hands on in just ...