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Autumn bouquet

Autumn bouquet

I’m going to have to start charging for priority lap seating.

I’m going to have to start charging for priority lap seating.

Chihuly at the Denver Botanic Gardens

There are worse places to fall asleep… Lovely day at the Denver @botanic.

There are worse places to fall asleep… Lovely day at the Denver @botanic.

Date night to see Beck at Red Rocks. That view is not too shabby.

Date night to see Beck at Red Rocks. That view is not too shabby.

Sunday snuggles with a tired, formerly crabby boy.

Sunday snuggles with a tired, formerly crabby boy.

Going for gold

I really tried to stay active while pregnant, but I was surprised to discover how much more altitude effected me. Add on that it was winter (then mud season), and I spent a lot of months in Denver.

Now that Nico’s here, we’re trying to get back into hiking. I kind of feel like I’m starting back at zero—how I felt when we first moved to Colorado. There may not be any ten-milers in my immediate future, but there are still plenty of awesome hikes in the Front Range for exploring. (Newborn fact: Their lungs can’t quite handle very high elevation unless they’re born into it, so we’re staying below 10,000 feet until he’s a few months older.)

Golden Gate Canyon State Park was our weekend pick. Oddly enough, we did the very same hike we did when we moved to Denver. I love this state park. It’s close to Denver, never super crowded, and the views!

Hideous, right?

We chose the Raccoon Trail, a moderate trail that gives you a bit of everything: pine forests, aspen groves, alpine meadows, and enough of an uphill to make you work for it. At less than three miles, it’s also an easy length. I think this is a fantastic choice for taking kids and out-of-town guests (we’ve had a lot of those lately).

The wildflowers were still blooming while we were there, so this hike was a perfect little afternoon.

…And I’m back!

Who knew two months off could go by so quickly! But it’s now back to writing and editing and hiking and (dreaming of) traveling. And now I’m doing it with this little guy as my companion:

Nico was born June 2 and immediately became the best baby ever born in the history of the world (in my completely objective and unbiased opinion). We’ve spent the summer learning how to smile, kicking at glorified cat toys, and exercising our lungs when we’re not fed at the very first sign of hunger.

Baby vs. Baby

In one corner (of my laptop), we’ve got my book baby. Look at it, all adorable and demanding of my attention.

And in the other corner (of my womb), we’ve got my baby baby. Look at it, all about to be born and sucking my brain power.

(Note: This is not my child. Mine is still in utero, where he/she seems content to stay until I reach the gestation of an elephant.)

Over the last few months, I’ve been dealing with the growing struggle between paying attention to my writing and paying attention to my fetus. I love both. They both fill me with joy and anticipation and occasional indigestion. And I know that, for at least a few months, one is going to take precedence over the other. (My book, obviously. We’ll leave out a bowl of water and crack a window for the baby.)

As my due date approaches charges toward me like a runaway bull, I’ve had to make adjustments to how I write. Gone are the head-down, locked-away, eight-hour days where I can blast through thousands of words or pages of edits. I’ve had to—shudder—make myself nap. Take a walk to clear my head. Sit out the couch and stare at the tv. And I’ve had to do this without that voice in my head yelling that napping equals failure. (I know, I know. It’s weird of me to be so anti-nap.) Because the days that I don’t do that? Well, let’s just say I’m thankful to the good shoppers at REI who didn’t root through my car when I left the car door wide open while shopping.

But, you know what? Letting/making myself take breaks has been a good thing. A needed thing. It’s something Type A me should have instituted long ago. (Scheduled breaks, mind you. I can’t throw out my entire personality.)

So, in these final few days I’m striving to slow down and enjoy doing nothing along with all the something.

Oh, and because I’m me. I also participated in an agent pitch contest, got bids from multiple agents, and now am doing one last polish of my novel before sending the full manuscript out to those agents. Baby steps, right?

Book Review: Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly

My review of the new YA fantasy Deep Blue is up over at A Book and a Latte!

bookandlatte:

Book Review: Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly

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First thing I thought while reading Jennifer Donnelly’s latest novel, Deep Blue: When are Sebastian and Flounder showing up? It can’t be denied that the set-up of this “mermaid princess goes on an adventure and finds her voice” novel is all too reminiscent of Disney’s The Little Mermaid. Yet while the similarities are undeniable—Merl princess Sera has a pet octopus—this book does stand on its own…

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Nº. 1 of  47