This is the cold that never ends…

At least that’s what it feels like. I think it started in ernest about January 5, and just keeps hanging on… It’s cliche, but I’m so sick of being sick!!!

I’d love to take a few days off to sleep – or a few half-days, anyway, so I don’t get too far behind on my work. Honestly, I’m not getting much done sitting at my desk trying to focus through the brain fog.

Unfortunately, while I’m lucky enough to get paid sick days, I only get five of them and I *really* don’t want to use them all up in the first month of the year! So, I sit at my desk with the hand sanitizer, answer emails, and try not to breathe on anyone. :-p

Writing… writing was going beautifully, but this week I’ve just run out of energy to get up at 6 and write before work – and don’t have the energy to write after work. I so want to get back to my story, but right now I open the file and stare at it – pretty much the same way that I stare at the computer at work, actually.

My coworker who got sick a week before me says she’s *still* waffling back and forth between feeling ok and feeling like she got hit by a truck – I told her she needed to stop telling me things like that and let me keep my delusions. :)

I’ve made it to a couple of Crossfit workouts in the past three weeks, but had to scale them even more than usual, and most nights – you guessed it – no energy.

I really want to apply to some exciting job opportunities, too. And I am… but about five times more slowly than I’d like to. I’ve sent in to Ooomf and Automattic so far, and will hopefully finish getting my email for Zapier tonight.

Speaking of which, Zapier looks like a pretty neat way to get your different apps talking to each other, especially if you run a small business – like automatically creating a new lead in a CRM like Salesforce from a new follower on Twitter. Once I have more energy, I need to suggest it to some of the writer’s groups I follow, along with Buffer for simplifying social media.

Anyway, that’s it for now. I hope everyone else is doing better on the staying healthy front!

Moscato, and stuff…

What we’re drinking tonight: Twisted Moscato.

Tasty… we’re not usually much for wine, but tried a Moscato when we were at Olive Garden after watching Thor: The Dark World yesterday, and it was both sweet and didn’t have that bite that wine usually does, so we decided to get a bottle. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find the exact type, but the Twisted one is quite tasty too, if not so sweet. We’ll have to try some different brands over the next few weeks and see what we can find. :)

The movie was excellent fun – exactly what I want out of a superhero movie. :)

Let’s see, what else? I’ve taken the last week off from Crossfit because of hurting my knee yet again, but it’s feeling much better so I’ll get back on the horse on Wednesday. I’ve also been doing knee-pushups every day, and can do more already than I could manage this time last week.


When the battle mage finally moved, it was to roll onto her side and push herself up into a seated position. After blinking a few times, she rocked forward and then stood, letting her blankets fall to the ground. Then, slowly, she raised one leg and stepped out of the tangle, and pulled the other leg to join it with a lurch. Without so much as a glance at her prince, she staggered off toward the river, pausing only to pick up the bundle of clothes and towel she had assembled the night before and refused to answer questions about.

“She moves like a cripple,” Ferris said, bewilderment making him blunt.

“Old warriors often do,” said Elm after a moment.

Ferris shot him a sharp glance. “She’s not old, she’s my mother’s age. The Queen doesn’t move like that!”

His attendant only shrugged, as unwilling as ever to enter into any argument.

Ferris looked at the break in the trees where his battle mage had disappeared. “I’ve never seen Maga Bera move like that either. Do you think she’s fending off some sort of magical attack, already?”

Elm’s face assumed its blandest look. “Would you like me to finish your chin, highness?”

Ferris scowled, and returned his attention to shaving. “I can do it myself. And don’t call me Highness. We’re supposed to be incognito.”



I’m sure you’ve seen links from Upworthy all over your social media, but you might not have looked at the company itself. They’re pretty neat!

Speaking of Upworthy posts, I’m wondering if my friend’s little girl would enjoy this for Christmas… And if I’m not mistaken, that’s Tim Schafer of Doublefine in the demo!

I also love this bit about the border between the US and Canada – lots there that I never knew. :)

Cold feet…

So cold, they’re making my legs hurt! Which means it’s time for a nice hot bath, and being thankful that I have a tub and hot water to bathe in. :)

This morning, I started a story about a middle-aged battle mage who gets cranky with the prince who insisted on dragging her away from soft bed and hot baths for yet another quest through the wilderness.

Not sure yet if there’s anything else to it, though.

In other news, check out The Stanley Parable – it’s strangely fascinating, and thoroughly engrossing, especially a few rounds in.

In more important news, happy birthday, Brian! I love you. :-)

Catch up… ketchup? Mmm…

Sorry about missing last week’s post, to anyone who missed it.
I don’t really remember why, either, so I won’t bother with excuses, or even reasons. ;-)

Anyway, I made it to Crossfit tonight, and totally blew myself out doing thrusters (30#) and pullups(with heavy-duty green & red bands) and then an all-out three minute row.

Everything hurts, but I just took some vitamins, and I’ll drink lots of water, and go to bed on time, so hopefully tomorrow I’ll feel pretty good. I should probably eat my stew at some point, too, since it’s sitting there smelling delicious.

Very Orange Stew (from memory, because the recipe’s downstairs, and stairs are not my friend right now)

1 lb stew meat
1-2 large sweet potatoes, cubed
1 lb carrots (I usually use baby carrots, but realized they had been in the fridge for about a month, so skipped them this time and put in more sweet potatoes)
1-2 lbs squash, cubed (I buy the pre-peeled and cut version)
1 1/2 cups liquid (water, broth, or in this case, the last of the apple cider)
1/3 cup worcestershire sauce
1-3 tsp minced garlic
1-2 tsp onion powder
1-2 tsp thyme or marjoram (or whatever seasoning floats your boat)
1-2 bouillon cubes

Brown the meat and toss everything but the squash in a slow cooker on low for 8-10 hours (or longer, if that’s your schedule – it just makes everything mushier.)

Add the squash and cook 1-2 more hours.

Serve, eat. :)


What the hell was she thinking?

Daum strode down the path, grinding his teeth and ranting silently at his unwelcome guest. Bad enough that she was here, on *his* planet, with no way to get rid of her, but she refused to simply join the team and blend in. No, instead she disappeared for days at a time, and then recruited *his* people for her silly little projects.

Well, no more. He was putting an end to this today.


I’ve been re-reading the Twenty Palaces series, and quietly lamenting the fact that the publisher cancelled it.

(Check it out! Modern fantasy with a very Lovecraftian feel. :))

Anyway, I got to wondering what the author was up to, and whether he had released anything new, and discovered in time to back it that he had a Kickstarter going for a new epic fantasy trilogy! It’s closed now, but you can take a look here. I’m sure I’ll mention when the books eventually come out, and there are sample chapters up on his blog.

I can’t help hoping that the success of this kickstarter will encourage him to self-pub some more Twenty Palaces eventually too. :-D The last book really set up some interesting opportunities for character growth and more world-revelation, and I *so* want to see what happens next!

And in closing, who wants to try some blueberry ketchup?

Writing through the labyrinth

The story has gone all sideways again.

I spent a couple of days going down a dogleg that flowed nicely, but doesn’t actually *go* anywhere. Well, I say a couple of days – the writing part of it was only one day, but then it took a couple more days of *not writing* to figure out why I was *not writing.*

Essentially, I had to take the time to:
A) figure out that I had made a mistake, and
B) figure out where the mistake (hopefully) is.

Tonight, after posting this, I’ll try again. To switch metaphors mid-stream, I’ll be tearing out a few rows of my knitting, and then hopefully getting a little further before it all goes wrong again. Not tinking, though – thank goodness! I’d honestly rather start a knitting project over from scratch than tink more than a few stitches.

Hopefully, I won’t have to go back further than I think… but we’ll see. I’m sort of feeling my way along – finding my way through the labyrinth in the dark, while *building* said labyrinth.

On another note, the Crossfit WOD was brutal today: 12 minute AMRAP of 5 thrusters and 10 burpees.

It doesn’t sound all that bad, does it? Except that burpees are one of my banes… two rounds in and I was flopping on my belly and then walking my hands back to my feet to get into a squat and stand up – not a terribly efficient (or speedy) way of doing things.

I really need to work on my burpees…

Anyway, here’s a bit of the stuff I’m tearing out tonight:


She took them to her tiny cabin, explaining that it wasn’t the original. “I finally figured out how to chink the spaces with mud so that it didn’t fall out,” she explained, sending Daum inside to see that there was no light shining through the walls.

“But the door isn’t sealed,” he said, opening the portal in question and crawling out.

Jade nodded. “You see why I was so afraid of facing the winter. I thought maybe I could sew some skins together and hang them over the doorway, but I haven’t been able to figure out how to turn a skin into leather yet. I keep experimenting, but even the pieces that don’t rot through wind up smelling so bad I have to throw them away.”

Daum peered back into the low, dark room. “What were you going to do for food? I was told most of the wildlife would either migrate or hibernate through the winter.”

“That’s the other reason I’m so happy you’re here. Have you ever tried to make jerky?” She launched into a description of the process she had used, reassembling her drying racks to demonstrate how she would lay the meat over her fire, and how difficult it was to fend off all the wildlife looking for a free meal.

“You should have just killed them too – more food for you!”

aaand, how about some links?

Urban bees :)

The world’s largest four-legged robot is a dragon. Very cool, but at the same time – well, of course – what else would it be?

I kind of want to visit Furth im Wald now. :)

Signing off

And now it’s time for me to eat, and do my backtracking. Anyone else have a project that isn’t going quite (or at all) how you want it to?

© 2010 Catherine Wechsler, used with permission.

© 2010 Catherine Wechsler, used with permission.


On Ice Cover
Refuge Cover
The Trouble With Wishes Cover