Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Kim Lauer: What is Wrong With All the Self-Publishing?

Kim Lauer: What is Wrong With All the Self-Publishing?: What is wrong with all the self-publishing? Only that I don’t have time to read all these awesome books that intrigue me. I see many indep...

What is Wrong With All the Self-Publishing?

What is wrong with all the self-publishing?
Only that I don’t have time to read all these awesome books that intrigue me.  I see many independent authors advertising their books on their blogs, on twitter, on facebook, and anywhere else they can.  As a result, my attention is continually being grasped by a title or a premise.  I started to actually write the titles down on a scrap piece of paper so that I stopped forgetting them.  I plan on downloading them all and reading them when I finally have some time; maybe during the holidays.
I have read a few already and was privileged to get to write reviews and post the author’s website and twitter address on my blog.  Our electronic age has really made interacting with the author of your favorite books not only a possibility but an enhancement of the reading experience.  I love that I can tweet someone about how much their book moved me.  I am excited knowing that the author can and will read my review.  We can even ask questions and learn more about the motivation and development of our favorite characters.  What people used to have to go to signings and readings for, we can get with clicks of buttons. 
All of this said, I am still trying to get published the old-fashioned way – for now.  Maybe it is because I don’t trust myself to publicize and promote as well as many authors.  Maybe I am still naïve about how this all works.  One thing is for sure; I am extremely grateful to all the indie publishers out there.  It is a real pleasure for me to get to read your work and to be able to interact with you online.  Thank you for giving us worlds to explore and lose ourselves in and for taking them time to make us feel like family.
I have a handful of titles I will include in case you want to be as hungry to devour them as I am, but beware!!!  Once you get sucked in there is never enough time to read all the books that look so great.  You can get all of them at amazon or smashwords. 
Cornerstone – Misty Provencher
Frightened Boy – Scott Kelly
New Blood – Paul Dorset
The Paradox Series – Patti Roberts
The Fall of Billy Hitchings –Kirkus MacGowan

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Kim Lauer: Review of Farsighted

Kim Lauer: Review of Farsighted: I just finished reading Farsighted by Emlyn Chand. The book is about a blind guy named Alex who starts to have visions of the future. H...

Review of Farsighted

I just finished reading Farsighted by Emlyn Chand.  The book is about a blind guy named Alex who starts to have visions of the future.  He works together with some other psychics to prevent something awful happening to his love interest.  Overall, I enjoyed the book very much.  I loved how the reader was transported into Alex’s world without sight.  The author did a fabulous job of describing things with sounds and smells and touch.  I definitely appreciated this new way of sensing what was going on in the book.  I also felt at times that it was pleasantly ironic to be sort of blind to what was going on in Alex’s glimpses of the future.  This is not an easy task to accomplish for a writer.
I am a youth worker, and as a result I always think about whether I would recommend the book to my youth kids.  I think Farsighted is something they would enjoy.  Alex explores feelings of independence and deals with parental issues that every teen faces.  The book also provides the bit of fantasy and romance that my girls especially enjoy reading about.  I think Farsighted can offer some good discussion about people with disabilities and how they survive “normally” in the world.
The book I am currently working on getting published is about seven kids who find objects that give them supernatural abilities.  I enjoyed reading about Alex and his friends who have special gifts.  I liked how they were living in a very normal world, with classes and parental issues and hormones, but that they also possessed talents that helped them to make a difference in the world.  This theme is something I am trying to portray in my manuscript as well.  I always get nervous when there are books similar to mine, but Ms. Chand’s characters and story are very different than my own, and she possesses a smart, direct writing style that isn’t easily duplicated. 
Thanks, Emlyn, for allowing me to read your manuscript.  I know many people in the online community have been talking about it.  It reminded me of a scene from You’ve Got Mail (yes, I am that old) when a character mentioned that it was like the whole city was talking about Kathleen Kelly that day.  It was like everyone was talking about Farsighted all at once, and I am privileged to be one of them.  I know this isn’t the last we have seen of Ms. Chand, and I will be continuing to follow her and the lovable Farsighted characters. 
You should check them out too!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Kim Lauer: Research While Working

Kim Lauer: Research While Working: How lucky am I that my current job allows me to also do research for my books? Before you get too excited and jealous, let me clarify. I...

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Research While Working

How lucky am I that my current job allows me to also do research for my books?  Before you get too excited and jealous, let me clarify.  I am not given permission and payment to leave work and do research for my writing.  I am, however, provided with opportunities to research middle school youth and their silly and sweet behaviors on a regular basis.  I am a minister to children and youth, and I write Middle Grade Adventure/Suspense books (with light fantasy).  I am a lucky girl.
This weekend will be one of those times when I get to fully immerse myself in the world of a child.  I am going camping Friday-Sunday with sixteen third-fifth graders.  I am really looking forward to this weekend for many reasons.  I have never done a trip for this age group, so I am excited to get to know these kids better.  I am also pumped about the amount of time we will get to spend in God’s Word together.  Obviously, the writer in me is eager to get to observe and learn from such a magical group of little ones for two whole days. 
I hope to be able to report back on some things that I learn from my fun weekend.  Usually when I set out to do observation and get ideas from the kids, I end up forgetting to take note and get sucked into having a blast.  That, too, is fine with me.  I aim to be a fun adult that the kids can bond with and someone who brings them closer to Jesus.  If I get a little insight into their brains while doing this, all the better.    
I was just feeling blessed today that God allows me to do research for my writing, while fulfilling my current role as a youth minister.  I wanted to share my joy with all of you.  I hope you are feeling affirmed in your current vocation too.  Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Faking Faith Review

I recently read Faking Faith by Josie Bloss.  I stumbled upon the book when looking for possible agents.  I was immediately drawn to it because of the premise.  A teen girl goes way too far, way too quickly with a boy.  She then is drawn into an online world of super-fundamentalist, homeschooled Christians.  She pretends to be a girl, Faith, with the same beliefs.  This facade eventually provides her with an opportunity to submerse herself into one of the super-Christian girl’s family.  We then see the complete opposite of the dating spectrum, with dating escorts and basically arranged marriages.
I am a youth worker, and so I was interested in reading this book about a girl who pretends to have faith in order to fit in to a world with which she has no experience.  I am also always looking for new ways to discuss dating with my middle school kids.  To be honest, I was apprehensive as I started reading that the Christian girl and her extremely fundamentalist views were going to be made fun of and Christians would, yet again, get a bad name.  I was pleasantly surprised by the honesty and vulnerability of both the protagonist and this Christian girl, Abigail.   Forgiveness and second chances was a major theme in this book, and I appreciated it.
I think it is a great book for teens because it shows both extremes of the dating world.  The main character makes a big mistake and then sees how others are making different missteps by being too strict about dating.  The novel ends with the protagonist finding a healthy view and understanding of dating, and the reader ends up rooting for her and her new love interest.  I would definitely recommend it to my youth kids, and we will be discussing the book further in some upcoming discussions about dating.  I have to just say thank you to Ms. Bloss for not exploiting Christianity and making Abigail so lovable and loving.
You should check out the book too.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Editing That Manuscript...Really Editing

                I recently edited my manuscript, I mean REALLY edited.  It was 152,000, and now it is at 108,089.  It was painful, slow, and consumed most of my thoughts. I took the middle and put it in the beginning.  I then cut a lot of the beginning out, parts I loved about the protagonist.  I then took out some scenes that didn’t really need to be there to support the story.  Some of those particular moments were my favorite.  One character, who I adore, is pretty much just in the background now.  With all that said, the process was also quite rewarding.  My manuscript reads better now, the exciting moments come sooner, and let’s face it…a publisher or agent is more likely to pick it up now with a smaller word count.
                Now I know what editing is and its purpose.  Six months ago I “edited” my first manuscript, which was finally finished.  I ended up adding more description of things, more thoughts of the protagonist, and even more scenes.  I also spent a lot of time taking out and putting back commas.  That was not editing.  What I did this week was, and I am thankful that I finally found the true meaning of the word edit.  I also wish I would have “googled” the word count of some of my favorite novels earlier.  A novice can be easily deceived by page numbers.  I definitely was thinking my book was shorter. 
                This whole process reminded me of something I have learned along the way about God.  He edits us.  Sometimes it is painful, and the whole process can be slow.  It usually consumes all our thoughts and time when God makes changes in our life to help us grow.  The situations are usually the ones that hurt the most, but it is so worth it in the end. 
                My daughter was in the NICU for the first week of her life.  We have ABO incompatibility.  It was the toughest week of my life to watch her get poked and see all those wires connected to her tiny chest.  I could only hold her for about five minutes every day.  It hurt, but so many good things happened as a result of that time.  My relationship with my sister is stronger, and God prepared me more for motherhood during that week than any book ever could. 
                I am thankful that God edits us.  I don’t ever want to be complacent.  I also don’t want to be a 150,000 word manuscript full of a lot of useless and confusing fluff.  I want to be the easily read, fast paced 108,089 book that can’t be put down.  As the author, I also know it needs more editing and can be even more concise.  We’re never finished, and God, thankfully, is never finished with us.
Hebrews 12:2 Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Kim Lauer: Another "No"...Finding Joy in the Journey of Writi...

Kim Lauer: Another "No"...Finding Joy in the Journey of Writi...: I received my fourth “no” from a literary agent today. It was the nicest so far and the one with the most feedback; although I still wish ...

Another "No"...Finding Joy in the Journey of Writing

I received my fourth “no” from a literary agent today.  It was the nicest so far and the one with the most feedback; although I still wish for more.  I am still extremely thankful that I haven’t heard, “You’re a horrible writer” or “It’s just like everything else out there.”  Until I read one of those responses, I will feel good.  I believe in my story and feel that it is unique (I am aware that every writer thinks that) and I would hate to hear that I am horrible at something I love so much.   I will keep trudging along the publishing road.  I am learning a lot as I get to each step or obstacle along the path, and I am discovering some parts really are quite fun.
I remember when I first got an email account.  I was so excited every time I clicked on the button to open my inbox or start my connection.  I was excited to see or hear the words, “You’ve got mail.”  I wondered which college friend had sent me something or if my boyfriend states away had emailed.  That feeling soon faded.  My email became work related and not very exciting.  My friends resorted to leaving me posts on Facebook or Twitter.  It just wasn’t as exciting to see what mail happened to be in the inbox.  Things changed about a month ago when I started sending out queries to agents and publishers.  I get excited to check my inbox again.  The little flutter of anticipation has returned.  I can’t wait for the site to load and read who has sent me a message.  Is it a response to a query?  Has an agent fallen in love with the précis of my book?  Are they dying to read more?
So far the answers to those last two questions has been “no.”  That is okay, for now.  I am excited to be on this new adventure.  I have things that give me joy and contentedness in my life, but it is fun to have an exciting entity to anticipate and dream about.  It provides a lot of delight to my routine that can seem dull at times.  It is one aspect of the writing road that I am thoroughly enjoying.   I like suspense.  I like adventure; and someday an agent, or a publisher, or maybe just a few readers will enjoy my Middle Grade Adventure book.   
Since I am not only an aspiring author but also a Christian and a youth worker, I thought about all this in a different way as well.  Sometimes our lives can be tough.  We often hear the word “no” about things that are extremely important to us.  “No, you didn’t get the job.”  “No, the cancer isn’t gone.”  “No, the car can’t be fixed.”  “No, I don’t want to be your friend.”  It is tough to hear the word and what sometimes follows.  Life on this earth is rarely easy, but we can find joy about our adventure here when we know where to look.  God doesn’t tell us “no.”  He says, “Yes!”  Yes to salvation, yes to forgiveness, yes to love, and yes to hope.  He knows there is more to come, and he wants us to find true joy.
What can you be happy about in your life today?  What simple things, like checking your inbox with hope in your heart, can put a smile on your face?  Where are you finding the joy in whatever adventure you are on?  I hope you can see it clearly and feel it abundantly.
Matthew 6:33 reminds us “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Kim Lauer: Will My Book Be Published? Who Knows?

Kim Lauer: Will My Book Be Published? Who Knows?: What are the odds that my book will be published or even picked up for representation by a Literary Agent? Pretty low. I am aware of tha...

Will My Book Be Published? Who Knows?

What are the odds that my book will be published or even picked up for representation by a Literary Agent?  Pretty low.  I am aware of that, and yet I am still making an attempt to get my manuscript printed.   I am also hopeful.  It is just a part of who I am; I can’t help but be optimistic.  I am also confident that things will work out with another aspect of my life causing some stress.  My current HOA is hounding us about our yard and the lack of grass, even though we are in a draught and under water restrictions.  They want to fine us and aren’t giving us much time to fix things.  I am positive that this situation will be resolved amicably and in our favor.  Why am I so sanguine?  Because I have seen amazing things happen to not so amazing people.  It is how my God likes to work. 
Every day we encounter things that can send us into worried frenzies.  Some things are huge, and some things are minute.  From there’s a gnat in my lip gloss (thank you Beth Moore) to a 2 month old losing a lung (current worry for my husband’s coworker), we experience exasperations and anxiety daily.  It’s a part of life.  It’s how we react to these things that truly matters.  Will we let the latest difficulty pull us down and out?  Will we constantly worry and nervously await a response from a publisher or agent until it consumes us?  Will the possibility of our HOA fining us a ridiculous amount of money when we can’t do anything about the current climate aggravate us to the point of uncontrollable anger?  I hope not; for in God I hope.
Have you ever realized how many times the words “who knows?” are in the Bible?  I know of at least three.  What are these words referring to?  Three separate people telling the others around them that God could change his mind and relent, have pity, be gracious.  These three people spend time on their knees, on their faces, in tears, in sackcloth (a sign of humility), and fasting in hopes that God will see their actions and have mercy.  It is what they decided to do when they were faced with horrible news and extreme anxiety.  They said, “who knows” God could fix this.  In two out of the three cases He did just that.  I bet they were glad they asked.
So…who knows?  Maybe my book will be published someday.  Maybe my recent stress about our HOA will be resolved.  Maybe the little boy will be healed and do well after the surgery.  Who knows?  God knows, and I believe he wants all people to come to know Him and believe.  Sometimes we may be going through something just so that God can do something powerful and show how much He cares.  Hopefully we are reminded just to ask.  One king did, and it resulted in the biggest restoration in all of history. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Kim Lauer: The Secret Circle as a Gateway

Kim Lauer: The Secret Circle as a Gateway: There have been many things about the process of getting published that have intimidated and discouraged me. One particular aspect kept...

The Secret Circle as a Gateway

There have been many things about the process of getting published that have intimidated and discouraged me.  One particular aspect kept me from doing an important and responsible thing that every writer should.  I was terrified to read other books from my genre.  I was sure that one would be too similar to my own story that I spent five years developing.  I got a hollow feeling in my stomach each time I researched other Middle Grade Adventure Fiction.  It was like watching a horror film. 
On one particular hot and sunny day in late August, just as I was preparing to send my newly edited and nicely arranged query and first three chapters to a publisher, I ran across a title and description of a new series on the CW.  The title alone sent the familiar feeling into my stomach.  I quickly researched all I could about the new show, which was also a book.  It sounded way too much like my book; the one lying on the counter in front of me waiting to be sent to a publisher for the first time.  I almost didn’t send it.  I figured it was as I feared, and it was just too comparable to everything else on the market.  I am glad I didn’t listen to those pesky feelings of doubt and incompetence. 
No, I haven’t heard back from a publisher or agent, but I have been watching The Secret Circle.  The first episode was scary.  There were a few moments where I felt like I could be watching a scene out of my own book, but then things changed.  Witchcraft became a major theme and so did romance.  I started to embrace the differences of The Secret Circle, and I even started to view its similarities as something that may actually help my book get published.  The Secret Circle could actually be an access point for me and my dream.
I think there are many obstacles and pessimistic feelings that can stop aspiring authors from pursuing their publishing dreams.  I am glad I didn’t let one of my biggest fears get in the way.  Sometimes a book, or show, or movie can remind us instantly of our precious manuscript.  Don’t be scared to read it or watch it.  Don’t run from the things that are similar to your book.  Discover and delight in the differences and the fact that the popularity of something resembling your manuscript may bring you an even bigger audience. 

I am reminded of something Priscilla Shirer once said about how God goes before us and tinkers with the gears to make sure that when we step up to the plate maximum results will be achieved.  He may have brought about a new series on a popular network just for me.  "The Lord is the one who goes ahead of you; He will be with you.  He will not fail you or forsake you.  Do not fear or be dismayed." Deuteronomy 31:8

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Kim Lauer: One Agent or Many...That is the Question.

Kim Lauer: One Agent or Many...That is the Question.: I decided to write about waiting again today. We are always waiting for something. What are you waiting for today? I am still waiting ...

One Agent or Many...That is the Question.

I decided to write about waiting again today.  We are always waiting for something.  What are you waiting for today?  I am still waiting for a response from the very first (and only) agent I have sent my manuscript.  She is behind, via twitter.    This current waiting spell has made me think about quality versus quantity.  Why did I only send my manuscript to one agent instead of a mass of them?  I researched and practically stalked quite a few literary agents in my hunt for the perfect fit.  There were quite a few extremely talented and professional people with an interest in my brand of book.  So… why just the one? 
I don’t know if I have a good answer as to why.  She seemed like the perfect fit for my manuscript.  I wanted to make my query speak to her directly.  I think she would love my book if she gives it a chance.  Hence I am waiting from one yes or one no from one agent.  Maybe my chances for a “yes” would be higher if I had sent my book to the dozen or so agents with an interest in Middle Grade Adventure Fiction (with light fantasy).  After all, isn’t the “right” agent the one that says “yes!”   Maybe…maybe not. 
I am curious to know what other aspiring authors do when they send out a manuscript.  Do you seek an agent first?  Do you send a query to as many literary agents and publishers as you can?  Do you seek the one perfect fit and hang your hopes on her or him for a while?  What happens when or if they say “not for me?”   I am thankful that I still have a dozen agents to pitch when that inevitable first “no” comes my way.  I am also thankful to have so many blessings in my life.  My book being published would be great, but all my eggs really aren’t in one basket.  I have a great job, great family, great friends, and a God that is leading me where He wants me to go.  All I have to do is say “yes.” 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Kim Lauer: On Steve Jobs and the Printed Word

Kim Lauer: On Steve Jobs and the Printed Word: In honor of Steve Jobs I thought I would blog about technology and the way it has affected me and those I love. Karl and I never had a ce...

On Steve Jobs and the Printed Word

In honor of Steve Jobs I thought I would blog about technology and the way it has affected me and those I love.   
Karl and I never had a cell phone until we got married in 2003.  We shared the first one.  I remember he teased me about programming all my family members in the precious 2, 3, and 4 spots for one-button dialing.  Number 1 has always been for voicemail.  We had a really old computer for the first 3 years of our marriage, and then I got him a DELL for his birthday.  I can remember when the internet was invented.  I was in middle school…in reality I guess it could have been earlier, but I remember learning about it in middle school.  People were debating the disappearance of the post…much like the latest buzz about the vanishing of printed books. 
I want to share a small detail about two of the people I love the most who are among the reason why “snail mail” and “paper-books” will always exist.  My husband, Karl is an avid sports fan and collector.  He has huge boxes in his “man cave” full of all sorts of sports cards.  He is constantly buying and trading these cards, and he usually makes a trip to the post office about once a week.  He will forever be using the “old-fashioned” way to send things, but he is also grateful to sights like ebay and Sports Card Forum for ways to trade and buy with people all over the world.  He does miss entering his favorite card shop in Elgin, Illinois (Shoebox Memorabilia), and he does occasionally visit the shop in North Austin.   
My mother is a fabulous person for many reasons, but one of my favorite things about her is that she has a library card and probably checks out a book once a week.  She will never own a kindle or a nook.  She, like many, enjoys the feel of a book in her hands and the smell of paper.  She spends her whole day staring at a computer screen and would not enjoy having to do that to escape into her latest reading adventure.   She even had my dad print out my 486 page manuscript so that she didn’t have to read it off her screen. There will always be printed books because of people like my mom.
I am thankful for all the people like Steve Jobs and the technology that makes our lives easier and more informed.  I am also thankful for those who work hard to deliver our beloved packages and handwritten notes.  I am especially grateful to agents and publishers everywhere who help writers get their polished work into the hands of many. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

On Waiting for Replies to Queries...and Other Things

Have you ever thought about how many definitions there are for the word WAIT?  There’s the verb form (used without object) - to remain inactive or in a state of repose; to be available or in readiness; to remain neglected for a time; to postpone or delay something or to be postponed or delayed; and to look forward to eagerly.  Wait can also mean to attend upon or escort.  We wait on, we wait up, we lie in wait, we await; wait (in British-speak) also can refer to a band of musicians that plays in parades.  Wait is quite a weighty word. 
I know what it is to wait.  All people do, really.  I think if you ask anyone at anytime what they are waiting for they can probably give you a pretty quick answer; if not three or four.  Currently I am waiting to hear back from the first agent I sent my manuscript.  I am also waiting for a man to step up and attend our middle school retreat this weekend.  One seems more important and time-sensitive than the other.  I don’t want to tell the four boys who are signed up that they can’t go.  The agent I sent my work to usually responds within two weeks.  Today is the two week mark.  I know agents are busy though, so I can wait. 
                There are many scripture references to waiting.  I picked one to share today that most spoke to my present circumstance and mood.  Psalm 37:7 Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him; Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.  I am waiting patiently.  Fortunately, I have many blessings and do not need my book to be represented or even published.  I will continue to write regardless because writing is a part of me.  I will wait and see where God leads me next.  I am having less patience with waiting for a male chaperone.  It’s funny how life can put things into perspective for us.
Enjoy your waiting today…maybe you are only having to wait so you can learn something too.

Kim Lauer: On Waiting for Replies to Queries...and Other Thin...

Kim Lauer: On Waiting for Replies to Queries...and Other Thin...: Have you ever thought about how many definitions there are for the word WAIT? There’s the verb form (used without object) - to remain ina...

Monday, October 3, 2011

Kim Lauer: The World of Writing

Kim Lauer: The World of Writing: The World of Writing I am learning that the more I explore the world of writing, the scarier it gets. It all began one afternoon in Elgin...

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Kim Lauer: A BIKE break...

Kim Lauer: A BIKE break...: This is day two this week of no biking with Ellie. I caught some sort of virus over the weekend and still have a lot of congestion in my c...

A BIKE break...

This is day two this week of no biking with Ellie.  I caught some sort of virus over the weekend and still have a lot of congestion in my chest.  It isn’t like the commute is very long, but I didn’t want to be coughing while trying to pedal.  We also were running a bit late today or else I probably would have tried the bike today.  Ellie was adorable both mornings because she kept yelling “bike, bike” from the backseat of the car.  I responded, “I know, we aren’t on the bike.  We’ll take it tomorrow.”  Monday I lied…
I have to say that I missed the ride yesterday and today.  It is a nice way to de-stress after a day at work.  The only stressful part to our ride is still crossing Slaughter.  I find that my mind is clearer when I can feel the wind on my face.  Ellie and I even said a little prayer last Thursday for the kids waiting for the bus.  I take notice more of the things around me while on the bike, and I try to remember to thank God for His many blessings.   I hope to be back on the bike tomorrow.  Thursday it looks like we may get rain, but its Austin so we probably won’t see a drop.  Thank you for tuning into Bicycling Incidents with Kim and Ellie.  It is fun for me to share my adventures with you.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011


B.I.K.E. = Bicycling Incidents with Kim and Ellie!
Today was day two in our adventure.  The mornings are nicer than the afternoons.  The air is cooler and the sun isn’t beating down on us.  Ellie kept her helmet on the whole time this morning.   I let her keep her “blankie” in the trailer and gave her some pretzels.  She was quite happy.
We left a little earlier today and were joined by some high school students that were biking to class.  I wonder if any of them are Karl’s students.  They weren’t wearing helmets and probably thought I was a big dork, but I stopped caring what high school kids think about me a while ago.  The ride was pleasant and pretty uneventful.  We did run over some poop.  Ellie’s trailer is too wide and I couldn’t get around it.  I’ll have to remember to check the tire for grossness.   A nice man, watering his yard, waved to us. 
I’m still a little nervous every time we cross Slaughter – at the intersection right by Bowie High School.  The teenage drivers scare me.   Watch for bikers; especially those towing cute little toddlers. 
Stay tuned…maybe we’ll witness something interesting one of these days. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Adventures of Kim and Ellie

I turned thirty-two today.  I feel more like I am twenty-two.  A lot of my life feels messed up at times.  I make many mistakes, am not responsible with my time, neglect to do things that should be done, and often wonder when I am going to grow up.   I did start one new adventure today.  Ellie and I biked to work; well, I biked and Ellie rode in the trailer.  Karl got us the bike and trailer for my birthday; an hour after we brought it home it rained.  Austin needs rain big time.  Karl said he should have gotten me a bike months ago if that was all that needed to be done for a little rain. 
I hope Ellie and I will get to continue biking/being pulled to work (and daycare) and I also hope to share our adventures with you all.  Today went pretty well.  Ellie tired of the helmet half way through the ride.  I think it is slightly too big and she didn’t like not being able to see the world zooming by…okay, it was not zooming by; I went slowly.  I had to stop and readjust the helmet because it was buckled and she had moved it so it was hanging from her neck.  After that small break things went pretty well.  I kept asking her if she was okay.  She would reply “aye”; it is her affirmative.  She must be Scottish.  I have no idea where she picked that up, but it is adorable.  I also asked if she was having fun to which she replied, “aye.” 
My ride went pretty well, except that I underestimated how much I would sweat.  It is still fairly hot in Texas.  I wore a backpack (full of diapers, wipes, my laptop, and Ellie’s lunch) and had a huge sweat mark on the back of my shirt for some of the morning.  I will just have to remember to maybe bring a different shirt to wear.  Ellie wouldn’t let me keep the backpack in her trailer, even though there is plenty of room.  She likes her space I guess. 
Mostly I am just glad we made it safely and weren’t run over by some late high school students, since Bethany is right next door to Bowie High School.  I will keep you all updated.  Pray for us!  J

Monday, August 22, 2011


God promises us that if we live lives of sacrifice we will be blessed. I decided to take a leap and believe God at His Word. He is God, after all. I took a step toward some new behaviors and routines today. I refrained from some old habits, things that kept stepping in-between God and me. I went without them tonight. I have before, but tonight it was the beginning of what I hope will be a long hiatus. I have refrained from making this decision numerous times before. I have always been scared to give up these things that have become like crutches to me. I often feel life would be dull and unbearable without them. But, God promises we will be blessed for such sacrifices.
He didn’t disappoint. I don’t believe He ever does; not really. I have already had a few surprises tonight. I checked my work email from home and had a couple answers to prayer. I have two chaperones to come on the dreaded lock-in with me Friday night. I have all the Sunday school teaching positions filled. Would all of this still have happened if I hadn’t decided to follow God tonight? Probably; I believe we have a gracious and loving God. Does the fact that these things happened tonight encourage me on my path? Of course. Thank you God for helping me to see that you truly are faithful, and life really is better when we follow you.
I just hope I don't easily forget what this feels like...

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A Revelation

Sometimes revelations can come in strange forms. I was watching Beastly the other night (yes I still like to watch teen movies), and I was surprised how the general theme of the movie spoke to me. I felt called to embrace my life, which is filled with numerous blessings and to be the best me that I can be in my current situation. It was an eye-opener for me.
All throughout my life I have been an imaginative person. I had an imaginary friend when I was very young, named Bubba. In elementary school, middle school, and even high school I would often create people in my head and pretend I was them. For most of my life I have had some sort of fantasy going on inside my head. I used it, at times, to escape reality. I think people would be surprised if they knew how many times I was pretending to be someone else when they were talking to me.
Recently I have started writing, and I am thankful that I have the imagination I have because it has helped me to develop characters and storylines. I was letting myself slip into a dangerous place though. I started thinking about what would happen if I actually got my book published. What if my middle school youth are right and it becomes a movie? Would I be rich? What would I do with all my money? Where would I live? What cool places would I visit? These thoughts started to swarm my brain like a pack of greedy bees. I started to get nervous about being published, and I wanted all the things I started dreaming about.
I am so relieved that God spoke to me through a movie like Beastly. I am truly, incredibly blessed. I have a daughter who has the most gorgeous smile and a laugh that fills me with joy. I have a patient and silly husband who is constantly making me laugh. I could go on and on about all the blessings in my life. I can’t believe I let those thoughts about a new life consume me for as long as I did. Thank you, Lord and thank you, Beastly. I am embracing the life I have and I hope to live it well and help others along the way.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Why am I blogging...

I have decided to start a blog...not sure if any one will read it but that is okay with me...for now. My reasonging is twofold. My first reason is that I like sharing some of the things I think during the day and I don't think my "friends" on facebook should be required to read them when they aren't interested.  It is one of my pet peeves when people post thier random thoughts and opinions on political, religious, and other matters as their status and I am forced to read them when I log into my homepage. I don't want to subject my "friends" to that. So, I have created a blog for people who may actually want to read my thoughts. Like I said...I am okay if that is no one.
My second reason is that I have started writing more and may want to share some thoughts and ideas with people in the future. Plus, I hear it is always a good idea to have some sites if you ever want to get published. But, that is a long way off.
Maybe this blog will just be more like a journal for me. I can always make Ellie read it when she gets older. Isn't that what kids are for? Ha!
If you happen to find your way on here, I hope you enjoy what you read. Feel free to comment.