Saturday, March 30, 2013

Saturday Smiles #3

Well, this hasn't been the greatest week ever, guys. If you've been following along, you'll know that I've been suffering from a bulging disc in my back for the last 8+ weeks. While my actual back is much better, I'm still having trouble with my right leg and I don't have full feeling in my toes. It's been a nightmarish two months. Luckily my amazing mother has been taking care of me...but on Tuesday we were out grocery shopping with my sister-in-law and nephew, and Mum lifted something heavy and hurt her back. So now we're a pair of cripples attempting to take care of each other. As you can imagine, it's been a rough week. 

Anyway...I did find some reasons to smile this week. Lucky for me (and everyone around me), I have a good sense of humour and while I do get frustrated with how limiting this injury is, I've been trying to find the bright side as often as I can.

Logan always sits in the cart to keep me company while we're shopping. On Tuesday he sprawled out in the top part of the two-tier cart and he was chattering away the entire time. He's so sweet and funny, my heart just bursts every time I'm with him, or even just thinking about him.

I'm usually the cook in my house but since I hurt myself, my mum has had to do most of the cooking. I help when I can, but I can't stand for long without being in agony. A few nights ago, I stood for about half an hour and made meatballs from scratch to have with spaghetti. It was pretty exciting for me! I've never enjoyed spaghetti as much as I did that night.

When I was getting Easter eggs (or Spring eggs as I call them, since I don't technically celebrate Easter) to hide for my nephews this weekend, I got myself a little treat too. These are soooo good - plus they're fun to eat!

VistaPrint had another big sale this week (they're always having some sale or other), and I decided to order more WAITING FOR THE STORM swag. The notebooks I got a few weeks ago were so beautiful, I ordered more, along with three tote bags and two sheets of stickers. The official launch date for the book is April 9th and I'll be having lots of giveaways! Another reason to smile: I ordered this stuff Monday, the estimated delivery was the first week of April, but it came on Wednesday - win!

So, those are some of the things that made me smile this week. What made you smile?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Saturday Smiles #2

Saturday Smile is a new weekly feature I’ll be doing where I talk about moments during the week that made me smile for one reason or another.

Mum and me
Last weekend Mum, Amanda, Logan and I went on our first road trip of the year. It was a lot of fun!

Logan and Amanda
When we were in the mall, we sat in the food court and Mum and Amanda went to go get lunch. Logan was playing on Amanda's phone (kid's more tech savvy than I am, I swear) and all of a sudden, he set the phone down, stood on his seat, leaned across the table and kissed me. It was the sweetest thing ever and I've been thinking about it all week. 

I haven't been able to drink since I hurt my back and had to go on strong painkillers but last weekend I decided to have a Guinness for St. Patrick's Day. It was such a nice treat.

Mmmm, Guinness

I've hardly had any mail in the last couple months but this week I got mail almost every day. I had several gift certificates and coupons to use, so I bought a ton of books plus I won one on Twitter!

Boooks *drools*
I had Logan on Friday while Mum went with Amanda to a doctor's appointment and Logan wanted to watch Disney's Robin Hood, which is one of my favourite movies ever. He kept a running commentary going the entire time and he was absolutely hilarious. He's hands-down the smartest, funniest kid I know.

When Amanda dropped off Logan on Friday, she brought me some goodies she'd picked up for St. Patrick's Day since she knows I love all things Irish.

They're so pretty I almost don't want to eat them!
 I finished the final revisions of my third novel, WAITING FOR THE STORM, which comes out April 9th!

This week on my book blog I got to interview Maddy Hunter, one of my favourite authors ever. It was a thrilling and surreal experience!

What made you smile this week?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

First road trip of the year

Since I hurt my back seven weeks ago, I haven’t done much or gone out (except for trips to the doctor and the grocery store). It’s been a long month and a half, and during that time my mum has taken amazing care of me. We share an apartment and normally split the work, but she’s done just about everything for me lately, and she’s just been so incredible. Last week after going to the doctor and finding out I should heal 100% given time, I wanted to celebrate, so I suggested to Amanda (my sister-in-law) that we take a little road trip and surprise Mum since she’s been so wonderful and hasn’t gotten to do much the last seven weeks either.

We didn’t really have a plan. I wanted to go to Bonnie Toggs (a kids clothing store - I want to start buying stuff for my niece, who’s due in June), and Amanda had been craving Saint Cinnamon (or, according to her, the baby has been craving it). I just love drives and I figured even if we did a couple things it would still be a change of scenery for all of us.

We ended up having to take Logan (my 3-year-old nephew), which was fine because he’s hilarious and a lot of fun. We told Mum we were going to WalMart and then as we headed for the highway we told her we were taking a small detour. Her confusion was pretty funny, I must admit!

All we ended up doing was going to the Mall because I wasn’t as ready as I thought I was to be walking around. I barely made it to the bathroom and then the food court, and after that we had to get a wheelchair because I just couldn’t walk any further. It was incredibly frustrating, but we still had fun, and it was a day away from the same ol’ same ol’.

I'm hoping this will be the first of many road trips in 2013, and that I'll be able to enjoy the next one more!

What did you do this past weekend? Have you been on a road trip yet this year?



Saturday, March 16, 2013

Saturday Smiles #1

Saturday Smile is a new weekly feature I’ll be doing where I talk about moments during the week that made me smile for one reason or another.

I went to the doctor this week and he told me he thinks my back should heal 100%. I’ve been noticing a difference every day - less pain and less of a limp!

I got to see both my nephews (Noah, 10 and Logan, 3) twice this week. It’s rare that I see them both that close together since Noah’s usually in school but this week was March Break.

Noah said to me “You used to give better hugs before you hurt your back” and it struck me so funny for some reason.

I felt my niece kick for the first time this week! When my sister-in-law, Amanda, was pregnant with the boys, they hardly ever kicked for me and so far Baby G’s been the same way, but I finally felt her kick on Tuesday.

Amanda brought St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes for lunch on Friday. They were so good! Incidentally, so was lunch. ;-)

I’d been sleeping really poorly the last few weeks (it was hard to get comfortable, I had a lot on my mind, and I was wondering if the meds I’m on had something to do with it), but the last few nights I’ve finally slept well. My schedule’s been all out of whack (this is when I’m thankful I work from home!), but I’m slowly getting back into a regular routine.

I had a dream one night this week that I was making out with Orlando Bloom (a la Will Turner in Pirates of the Caribbean - YUM) and then he asked me to marry him. Why can’t I have dreams like that more often?? Nono, wait...why can't I have REALITY like that? *sigh*

I’m used to getting a ton of mail but in the last six weeks I’ve hardly had any. Last week I won a signed copy of The Almost Truth by Eileen Cook from Christy at Love of Books and it came this week - so excited! I read one of Eileen's other books, Unraveling Isobel last year and loved it, so I’m looking forward to reading this one.

Speaking of reading, I’m currently reading The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsley. I hadn’t heard of it until around Christmastime when I noticed the ebook was on sale for 99 cents. I debated buying it but it’s 500+ pages and I figured I’d rather have it in physical form and my library had a copy so I decided to wait. Then Simon & Schuster Canada sent me an ARC of The Firebird, the companion to The Winter Sea, so I bumped it up on my tbr. My mum got to it first and loved it, and I’m really enjoying it so far. It’s a mixture of contemporary and historic fiction, and it’s set in Scotland. There are a few characters who speak the Doric dialect and it makes me giggle whenever they talk because it sounds (looks?) so funny.

What made you smile this week?


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Poor, Neglected Blog...

For the handful of people who actually read this blog and have been wondering...I'm still alive! It's been well over a month since my last post, but if you read my posts in February, you might remember that I hurt my back at the end of January.

I'm not exactly sure how it happened, but I was at the mall and all of a sudden I was in excruciating pain. I've dealt with back pain before and hoped it would go away on its own, but after a week and a half, when my leg and foot started to tingle and go numb, I knew it was time to have it checked out. The emergency room doctor told me it was a bulging disc in my back, and that it should eventually heal on its own. I'm not going to harp on it, but let me tell you: the last six weeks have been a nightmare. I've run the gamut of symptoms from unbelievable pain in my back, legs, and bum, to muscle spams to partial numbness in my feet and legs. I've spent a lot of time sleeping, reading, and watching TV, and my computer time has been limited (which is super fun, especially when I'm trying to edit my third book, keep up with my book blog, and do other poor author blog has been as neglected as Lost and Found). 

I finally got in to see my family doctor yesterday (he was on holidays for a couple weeks, so I've been to both emerg and the clinic in the last six weeks). I've been slowly getting better and can notice a difference every day, but I still have some pain in my right leg and bum (typical symptoms), and I don't have full mobility in my right leg or full feeling in my ankles and toes. The doctor did some leg lifting tests, as well as reflex and strength tests and seemed pleased. He said I should recover 100% - I was so relieved I almost cried! 

I'm looking forward to putting this whole ordeal behind me. I miss living a normal life, but it's made me realize a few things. I'm the type of person who believes everything happens for a reason, and I think this happened to teach me a lesson. I need to take better care of myself - I need to lose weight, exercise more, have better posture, not try to carry so many heavy things, and pay attention to how I lift things. But more than that, I think, is that I need to really start living. I've mentioned before that I don't have much of a life - being a writer and working from home have led to me being a hermit, but I know now that I need to get out and do more. I need to not take time, my health, and my mobility for granted. I haven't been able to take the bus the last six weeks, so I've only been out a handful of times (half were doctor-related outings, the other half was grocery shopping). I haven't done anything really fun in six weeks because I couldn't. It's made me realize that when I'm able to, I will. I'll go out just because I can. So even though this last month and a half has been hell, it's taught me a lot. 2013 hasn't been great so far, but I haven't lost hope. I still believe it can turn around and be the epic year I was hoping for.

I don't have any new pictures to share because I've hardly touched my camera in the last six weeks (which is killing me, but since I haven't really been out, there are only so many things to photograph in my apartment!). I'm looking forward to nice weather (and, you know, full mobility lol) so I can get outside and start taking pictures.