Family · Travel

Traveling with Children

Over the last few weeks I did something that I haven’t really done since I was a child myself. I traveled with children. And by children, I mean a 1 and 2-year-old. Dale’s sister and her family came to Italy to celebrate Christmas with us and we were able to take several small trips with them. We had a great time and I am so glad we got to spend so much time with all of them. Let me tell you though . . . Continue Reading

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Family

My Christmas Traditions

This will be my second Christmas away from home and almost all of my family. It is hard when you live thousands of miles from home and you will only see your parents and siblings over Skype and can’t give them hugs or do any of the things you usually do with them on Christmas. In light of my holiday nostalgia, I will be sharing what Christmas looked like for me growing up. . . Continue Reading

Book Reviews · Reading

Book Review: Hanna Who Fell from the Sky

Hanna has lived in Clearhaven all of her life. In fact, she has never left the town at all. Soon she will turn eighteen and marry the man her father chose for her. She will be Edwin’s fifth wife. Hanna has always believed she was meant for more than being just another wife of a man more than twice her age. She often thinks about leaving Clearhaven and becoming the person she always wanted to be. But that would mean disobeying not only her father, but the Creator. When she meets a boy who has spent the last year outside of Clearhaven, she wonders if maybe leaving is actually possible. But will it be worth it if she has to leave behind her mother, her siblings, and everything she has ever known? . . . Continue Reading

Editing · Writing

Grammar Tip – Apostrophes

Today, I will tackle a punctuation mark that trips up a lot of well-meaning users. The apostrophe. While it may seem like a simple mark, it gets confusing when we try to put it between the letters it and s or when we need to put it at the end of a word instead of before the s or . . . okay, so it seems to get tricky around the letter s. I’ll try to clear that up a bit. . . Continue Reading

Travel

Trying New Things: It’s Not So Bad After All

While you are traveling, you also have the opportunity to try new things. Which can be scary. I have never been a fan of trying new things. But when I started traveling, I decided I was going to change that. When you are in a new country, surrounded by a different culture, different foods, different people, different environment, how can you pass up the many opportunities? Ok, it can still be scary sometimes, at the very least nerve-racking. But, I gather my courage and continue to try new things. Usually, it ends well. Here are some examples from my recent trip to . . . Continue Reading

Writing

Why Taking a Break Can Be the Best Thing to Do

The past few months of my life have been pretty hectic. I finished up my last semester of college, consisting of seventeen credits, while working two jobs and planning a wedding. When summer came, I had an internship and still a lot of wedding details to get under control. I’m not complaining about any of it. I chose to take on each and every thing. But, it was a LOT. Once I was graduated and married, I took some time to sit back and really relax. And it was so needed. . . . Continue Reading . . .

Editing

How to Politely Say Something is Horrible

You have started working on your latest editing project and are less than impressed with the quality. You have a few options here. It is very possible that you don’t have a choice about whether or not to edit this. Maybe it was handed to you by the publishing house and they asked you to get it up to snuff. Or, maybe you are a freelancer and this came from a private client. You have more freedom to decide to give it back to her to keep working on it or you can slog through and help her figure out the issues. Whether you want to keep the project or you think it is best to return it, you need to communicate to the author that there is a lot of work that needs to be done. You want to do this without hurting her feelings or crushing her dreams. What is an editor to do? . . . Continue Reading

Writing

How to Self-edit Without Destroying Your Self-esteem

Setting: Your favorite writing nook
Characters: You and your freshly written masterpiece
Time: The present
You have just finished your latest story and you are flying high on the creative juices still flowing inside you. You know it is wonderful. You sit back, close your eyes, and revel in the story that is still dancing around your head.
You decide to go back to the beginning and get started on revising. . . . Continue Reading