Monday, January 26th, 2015 | Author:

Not gonna lie, it’s been a stressful week. No, scratch that, a stressful month. No, wait, just kidding, it’s been a stressful winter. Let’s just go with winter. The whole darn thing has been a no-hitter streak of high-stakes waiting, with a few regular ol’ life stressors added in here and there for extra flavor.

Well looky here, it turns out you really CAN find just about anything online if you look hard enough...

Well looky here, it turns out you really CAN find just about anything online if you look hard enough…

Here’s something you may not have known: Shutting down a business is, how to say this delicately? It sucks. It sucks a lot. It sucks so much, it’s enough to convince me that anyone foolish enough to consider starting a business should be taken out back and shaken vigorously until their crazy ideas fall right out of one or both of their ears.

Not that Wes’s business has been all bad. It’s afforded him a ton of opportunities and growth and was undoubtedly a net positive. We are, however, knee-deep in wrapping up loose ends and as such the positives are more or less intangible while we finish everything up.

So we did the waiting and the interviewing thing for a few months, and that was stressful. And then one of Wes’s closest friends passed away and that was stressful. And then Wes got food poisoning right before his final interview for the awesome company, and that was stressful. And in between that was Thanksgiving, Christmas, baby showers, car trouble, deadlines for me, deadlines for Wes, and, you know, typical parenting stuff.

I spent all day on Friday getting everything together for our personal taxes. Wes spent all day doing the final bookkeeping for his business so he can file those taxes and be done with it. We are pushing hard to get everything done so that when he starts his new job at the awesome company on the 30th, we’ll have a clean slate and life can go back to normal again.

Because wouldn’t that be nice? Wes can’t wait to dive into his new job, I’m excited for him to get to talk to real, actual people every day, and who can say no to incredible health insurance, paid time off, and interesting work with high-caliber people?

Here. Have a daffodil. Daffodils are like the anti-stress. They're sunshine flowers. Soak it up, guys.

Here. Have a daffodil. Daffodils are like the anti-stress. They’re sunshine flowers. Soak it up, guys.

And of course Bai Tide comes out in a few months, and I just figured out how book #4 is going to start, and the weather is going to start improving here any day now.

Things are looking up. Here’s hoping for a respite from the stresses we’ve been hosting like house guests so we can take a few deep breaths and try to collectively ratchet down our blood pressures a bit. The hope is that by doing this final push to get everything done before Wes’s new job starts, we’re giving ourselves the chance to start fresh. I think that’ll make Wes’s Herculean effort to finish his To Do list worth it.

As for me, I’m going to keep stress-eating M&M’s, getting my notes together for the various workshops I’m leading soon, and grinding out marketing and promotional stuff for Bai Tide. Fingers crossed that I get to see my cover soon. CAN’T WAIT.

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Monday, January 19th, 2015 | Author:

I gotta tell you, living in Seattle yesterday when the Seahawks surprised the crap out of everyone by winning an improbable victory against the Green Bay Packers during what looked to be a no-scoring shut-out loss was…singular. The kind of thing I doubt many of us will live to see again.

While not every single person in Washington state was tuned in to the game, when I looked at my Facebook feed it seemed like that was the case. And for the first half, everyone I knew was livid. Where were the Seahawks? they asked. How could this be happening?

I'm sure this guy, who Google has told me is named Clay Mathews, is a super nice guy.

I’m sure this guy, who Google has told me is named Clay Mathews, is a super nice guy.

I was fairly busy chasing my children around Wes’s parents house, and even I (normally not prone to getting swept up emotionally by sporting events) was getting pretty irked by how good of a time those Packers seemed to be having while they stomped all over CenturyLink Field. There was one guy in particular who kept grinning and tossing his long blond hair behind his shoulders and I just couldn’t help but wish he’d stop smiling so dang much and also that he’d cut his hair already, my GOSH.

Half time began on a dejected note. Wes came upstairs to where I was playing with the kids and started tossing our daughter into the air because he needed her giggles to allay the stress he was feeling. When I asked how he was doing, he replied, “We’ve come back from worse.”

I will say this for my husband and his father: They never once considered turning the game off, even when the third quarter passed and a victory was looking more and more impossible.

I put the kids down for naps and joined them, resolved to experience whatever came with my husband so at the very least he wouldn’t have to re-live it later when I asked him what happened. We watched, rapt, as the impossible began to happen.

The Seahawks scored! And then they scored again! And all kinds of other football-y stuff happened and we all cringed and growled simultaneously in frustration when the Packers used the last few seconds to even the score. Over time?! How could we have to go into over time? We just scored oodles of points in, like, five minutes!

And so we all gripped blankets, arm rests, or, in Wes’s case, his own head, and held our breath until the Seahawks scored that last touch down and we knew, but couldn’t believe, the game was over. And WE HAD WON.

The game that seemed doomed to end poorly was turned on its head and all of Seattle (or, at least, the grand majority of us who were watching) had a collective heart attack. All of us who were watching at my in law’s house just looked around, dazed, as we struggled to comprehend the incredible truth that, despite a terribly disappointing first half, we were going to the Super Bowl.

Amazing. And now I have to bring a blood pressure cuff to watch the Super Bowl with Wes because I’m fairly certain if I don’t he might end up suffering a stroke or something. I’ve never seen him get so red in the face about something before.

If, on the very slim chance that one of you readers happens to be a Seahawk, will you please think of my poor husband and crush the Patriots outright in a couple weeks? The game yesterday was a hoot in retrospect, but I’m worried about what will happen to my husband if that kid of thing happens again. Also? Good luck!

My goodness, you guys. My goodness.

Friday, January 16th, 2015 | Author:
Yep, this man has multiple job offers. Probably because he knows how to enjoy a pineapple properly.

Yep, this man has multiple job offers. Probably because he knows how to enjoy a pineapple properly.

This was a really, truly, very strange week. Up, down, left, and right, if you catch my drift. Wes received job offers this week! Hooray! My best friend’s baby had some tummy trouble and they had to spend a few days in the hospital. Sad. I finished enrolling my kids in school for next year! Hooray! Wes and I are putting the finishing touches on the logistics of wrapping up his company. Sad.

And there were other things happening, too. A whole bunch of people wrote and posted reviews for Blood Money on Amazon for me, which was awesome, and my friend Matt (who is King of the Beta Readers) finished reading through and giving me his notes on Take the Bai Road (which is book #2 of my upcoming series), and THAT is awesome too. I’ve been emailing, organizing, phone calling, budget figuring, and baby visiting like crazy this week, and now that we’ve finally made it to Friday I find myself so. very. happy. to put a cherry on top of this week and call it done.

But! The important thing to remember is, my friend’s baby is A-OK and Wes has job offers. Offers, you guys. As in plural. He’s going to make his final decision by the end of today and then we’re celebrating with a bottle of Prosecco and some homemade chocolate chip cookies. We roll hard here at Casa de Mitchell.

We’re hopeful for a Seahawks win this weekend, because nothing would tie a bow on top of the successful conclusion of Wes’s job search like his team going to the Super Bowl.

And that’s it for me. Like I said, up, down, left, and right, and through it all the reliable, never-ending narrative of my life that is laundry, grocery shopping, and house cleaning.

Go Hawks! And happy weekend to all of you! May you all have a terrific weekend, unless you’re rooting for the Green Bay Packers, in which case I kind of hope the very end of your weekend is kind of disappointing but only because your football team lost and not for any other reason.

Category: Work  | Tags:  | 2 Comments
Monday, January 12th, 2015 | Author:

513n+LHT-AL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_When you’re an author, sometimes you’re lucky enough to make friends with other authors. If you’re really lucky, those other authors have been writing longer than you have and you can learn from them.

I have found in fellow author Karen Burns both a mentor and a friend. We’re critique partners, which means we send each other chapters of our in-progress works and give no-holds-barred critique feedback. We know each other’s characters so well, we know intuitively what they will or won’t do.

Her book, Rules For the Perpetual Diet, just came out. Because I’ve gone through every single chapter of that book with a fine-toothed comb, I can say with certainty that it’s an excellent book. It’s clever, terribly interesting, and not in any way typical. The writing is solid, the characters are unique, and the setting is spot-on perfection. (A large part of it takes place in Paris {some of it under Paris} and Karen’s descriptions are perfect because she’s spent many months exploring Paris.)

If you’re in the market for some solid, well-done fiction, I can’t recommend her book highly enough. Trust me: I’m a professional.

Click here to read reviews or purchase it on Amazon!

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Saturday, January 10th, 2015 | Author:

Living in Seattle with the Seahawks in the playoffs is interesting. It’s like the team’s colors are this state’s unofficially official dress code, and it’s perfectly acceptable to assume everyone you might meet while out in public is a fellow fan. I’m not saying you’ll definitely get your car keyed if you have a 49’ers license plate holder but…I wouldn’t count it out.

Even children and dogs are not immune from Seahawks fever. Did you know they make teeny tiny little football jerseys? They do. And you can pay a small fortune for one so your whole family can stand united in NFL team-loyal fervor.

I know what this guy's name is!

I know what this guy’s name is!

As for me? Yes, I have a Seahawks t-shirt, but I rarely wear it. I bought it on sale at Costco but it almost never makes it out of my closet. Why? Because I feel like a fraud every time I put it on. I can barely name three members of the Seahawks, the only football term I’m super solid on is a touchdown, and my first thought when I hear the term, “Turnover” is still, “Mmmmmmmmm, pastry.”

But Wes loves the Seahawks. I’m pretty sure he loves me more then he loves the Seahawks, but during playoff season it’s a close call. (Ha ha, Wes, just kidding! A little.)

Kick-off for the playoffs game against the Panthers is in a little less than four hours, so I’m legally required, as a citizen of Washington state, to conclude this post with, “Go Hawks!”

If they win this game, they could go to the Super Bowl, and wouldn’t that be great?

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