Busy, busy, busy

I’ve been neglecting this poor little blog and my handful of loyal readers. (Y’all still out there?) Life gets in the way sometimes. Sad but true. So let’s play catch up. Here’s what has been keeping me away from blogging.

Grad School
This is probably the biggest distraction. Or was. Yes, that’s right…WAS. I’m done!!!! After hiding from the world for two months and writing my fingers into exhaustion I turned in my thesis (the first 10 chapters of my first novel). As of December 1st I officially have my Master’s in English and Creative Writing, Fiction. I finished classes in early November and I’ve been lost ever since. After two solid years of school it is hard regaining a balance but I’m getting there.

done

National Novel Writing Month
This was my second year taking on the monster NaNoWriMo 50,000 words in a month challenge. And this year I’m proud to say that I made it. I expanded on the novel that started as my thesis, adding close to 15 chapters to it. It is still not done, but NaNo gave me the push I needed to get further on it. I’m taking a little mental health break now, but I’ll dive back into in a week or so and finish the rough draft. (Watch my blog for future news on the book.)

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving turned out to be much more fun than it normally is in my world. Typically it is just me and my folks grilling steaks or something. This year though I decided to head to Georgia and visit my birth mom and half sisters and all of that part of my family. Best. Idea. Ever. It was so much fun and even though I came home sick (thank you brother-in-law J. for the germs) it was the best trip. I hadn’t realized how much I’d needed a break. I also hadn’t realized how much I needed some sister time. I grew up without them, but now that I have them in my life I find that I need time with them like people need air or water. They sustain me. I have to find a way to see them more than once a year.

From right to left...me, E, T, & M. I'm blessed to call them mine.

From left to right: M, T, E and me. Love these gals so much!

Rheumatoid Arthritis
I’m putting RA on this list not because I’ve been sick but because I haven’t. I’ve been making some changes, adding new supplements and taking away prescriptions, and it seems to be helping. I came through a major cold front (a 40º temp drop in about an hour and a half) with minimal reaction. Normally a temp swing like that would have sent me for the narcotic pain meds. The changes I’ve made seem to be working. I feel better and am able to be more active. I see my doc in two weeks so we’ll see if he (and the labs) agree with me.

My cat expresses how I feel better than I can.

My cat expresses how I feel better than I can.

Getting Healthy
Speaking of heath…I’m also working toward some lifestyle changes to get healthier. That picture of me and my sisters is hard to share. I feel like I look so much heavier than them. Granted, I am the oldest, but still, I don’t want to feel like the fat sister. So I’m walking at least 30 minutes a day and eating better and eating less. I’d love to dive into an intense workout program, but with RA that would end up lasting about two days and then my body would crash and put me in bed for a week. So walking is about all I can do, but hopefully it will help and allow me to slowly add things like yoga and hiking and riding my horse. Baby steps and all that.

What!? Don't judge me.

What!? Don’t judge me.

Job Searching
Now that school is done I’m looking for a spanking new job too. I’m being picky though so it is slow. I’m trying to find something that will allow me to work from home – preferably in editing/proofreading/writing. Even though my RA is doing well, the fact is that I need to have a more flexible job. Sitting at a desk day after day kills my body and is making my already bad back much worse. I need something that will allow me to work from bed on the bad days. I also need to find something that pays better. As much as I love the place I work now, the fact is that I will never get a flexible schedule or higher pay here. So I’m looking to move onto something new. I pray I’ll find something soon.

This is dream job number two.

This is dream job number two.

Focusing on Faith
Speaking of praying…that’s the last thing on my list. (Best for last!) Now that I am free from the pressures of school, I’ve started spending more time with God. As soon as I shake this cold (and the brain fog the meds cause) I’m starting a Bible study plan. If I’m going to write inspirational novels with Godly themes, I need to know the Bible much, much better. I’m trying to spend more time in prayer each day and talk to God more.

praying

There are countless other little things going on too. Christmas presents, Christmas cards, writing short stories, trying to get published, helping former classmates with their own writing, and more. But I promise more attention will be paid to this little blog. I have a feeling that 2015 will hold lots of excitement. I can’t wait to share it all with you!

~Elise

P.S. If I can pray for you, please let me know in the comments. God bless you all!

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