It’s time for another week long break. Expect changes afterwards.
A Look Back
I spent most of my July break reading, so there were a lot of book reviews over the past 6 weeks. My reading tastes are a little all over the place, but I gravitate mostly to fantasy and fiction. At least, that’s usually what I choose to review. In addition to book reviews, as though there must be more talk about books here, I wrote about why I read and which books usually have my feet moving me to the kitchen to either cook or bake. It’s safe to say books rule my life.
The Cottage at Plum Tree Bay|Earthbound Angels Trilogy|Pricked|The Fox, the Dog, and the King|The Unfettered Child|Cryptofauna|The Harp of Kings|The Particular Charm of Miss Jane Austen
Other than reading, I spent part of July participating in Camp NaNo. It’s been a while since I’ve really written any stories, so I took that one slow. It’s far from finished, but I have enough of it done that I’ve chosen to start posting it, completely unedited. I’m hoping it’ll give me the kick I need to actually finish it. This one is called Queen of the Garden of Girls, and it’s my own twist on Beauty and the Beast.
Part 1|Part 2|Part 3|Part 4|Part 5
I also had the honor of interviewing Jenni from Housewife Hustle. I don’t normally read non-fiction, but she recently published a self-help ebook focused on body confidence for all body types. She also has an extended paperback edition coming out this Fall.
And, of course, I spent much of the summer baking. I can’t help it. I bake, on average, once a week. It almost feels like an addiction. I get the urge to bake just about every Monday. Ratio baking cakes has gotten easier, so I shared my recipe for chocolate cake with whipped cream frosting. Even though it’s based on ratios, I listed, more or less, exact measurements. I also attempted the cookie ratio…which didn’t quite go as I planned.
Mother of 2
My son just started Kindergarten. It’s hard to let go since he’s my first, but I’m hoping he has a good year. With him at school, it’s just my daughter and me. She’s a feisty little two-year-old. Fortunately, she doesn’t tantrum much, but, when she does, my training in Applied Behavior Analysis comes right out and makes everything much easier for me. I’ve also started a new series called Finding Magic in Motherhood. So far I’ve written about how my childhood has impacted how I parent. It’s been fun to reminisce, but it also makes me long for my low-tech childhood. And then, as a young adult, I had the scary decision of whether to have children or not tossed into my court.
The Weekly Question
#11: Do you like reading at the beach?
#12: What is your favorite first day of school tradition?
#13: Why do you read?
#14: Do you prefer analog or digital clocks?
#16: Is there a post you’re particularly fond of that you’d like to share?
I wrote more about it earlier this week, but it doesn’t hurt to say it again. This blog will be undergoing quite a change. Most of the changes will hopefully be done over the next week, but I’m not going to be optimistic and say it’ll be complete by the time my break is over.
This change is born from frustration and passion. I love stories. I love authors. I especially love authors who take the difficult plunge of self-publishing. From personal experience, I know it’s hard to get a foot in. Hence the passion. I had wanted to become a freelance editor or start my own literary magazine, but my time is much too limited to do that. Hence the frustration. Still, I wanted to do something.
I’ll be turning my blog into a home for stories. Any kind of stories, with a few guidelines, unfortunately. I hope to publish not just my stories, but yours if you’re so willing. Fiction and non-fiction alike. I’ll continue to do book reviews, but I also want this to be a place where stories and the authors can find a place to shine.
Favorite Posts From Around the Blogging Community
Mostly because I feel self-centered about writing a whole post about my own blog, but also because there are so many lovely blogs I enjoy and want to share them with you. Here are some of my favorite posts from the last 6 weeks. I do hope you check them out and give them a follow.
How to Actually Start a Blog on quirky quip: There are so many posts and articles on how to start a blog, but I love Jordan’s because it’s so practical and is more about the blogging process than on whether to self-host or not.
How to Have a Multi-Niche Blog: Yes, It Is Possible from Housewife Hustle: New bloggers are told to have a niche, but Jenni turns that advice on its head. Perfect for anyone who longs to have a lifestyle or more eclectic blog, she suggests how to make it work.
Scared as a Mother by Christa Stockton: Any number of accidents and emergencies can happen when kids are about and becoming more capable. Christa shares her experience with an emergency and how glad she was to have been prepared. It’s true; you just never know.
Simple Guidance to Reduce Stress on Growing Little Q: Simple is right! Great advice for anyone dealing with stress. It’s so easy, so simple. Don’t forget it.
Books Around the House by I Didn’t Want to Be a Mother: My favorite mom blogger strikes again! This time she talks about how important it is to not just have books at home, but that they actually be cracked open and used. Also check out her The Best Thing You Can Give Your Child post. Actually, just go and follow her. As a soon-to-be mom of 5, she has a lot of good advice!
The Inescapable Consequences of Reading from Degrees of Maternity: I love this post because Jana enumerates exactly why reading is so important. Nothing I can possibly ever disagree with! She also lists some life writing assignments she had planned for her son. I love the idea and can’t wait until my kids are old enough to read and write so I can do this with them, too.
Unicorns and Pipe Dreams on Darkwood: For all writers and anyone who knows a writer. Just read this. It’s a lot like being a mom. You just have to keep doing you and never give up on your craft.
Most people can’t write by Autumn Rain: Perhaps a bit of a counterpoint to the above, but equally true. Writing is hard work!
False Summit by Jennifer M. Zeiger: I don’t know much about climbing mountains, but Jennifer’s metaphor for the editing process is beautiful and makes a whole lot of sense. Writing anything seems like a never ending journey, but it’s good to know that summit is there. Just slightly out of reach without a lot of work to get there.
Our first date by The Lonely Author: I mean…after you read it, you tell me if I should say more.
Back to School for my Babies on Thoughts with N: Thanks to Jenni from Housewife Hustle, I was introduced to this lovely lady. I love this post. There’s an incredible beauty to it that makes me want to cry every time I read it.
Sites and Posts Shared by Fellow Bloggers
That Poor Survey Woman… on Every Small Voice: A big thanks to Chelsea from I Didn’t Want to Be a Mother for this one. This is one I think every stay-at-home mom or dad can relate to.
Positivitymonger: Shared with my by the blog’s author, this looks like one I’ll be happily following from here on out. It’s full of positivity and bit and pieces of life to think upon. I love blogs that make me think and change how I see the world. I think this is one blog that can offer that.
One Life 13: A lovely blogger who found me last year at the start of his blogging journey, he has recently revamped his site and it looks amazing! I think one the first posts of his I ever read was about cycling. Since then, he’s documented his journey of self-growth while spreading positivity, and continues to do so.
The Red House by Bits and Dragons: This is one of my favorite blogs. His bits are tech heavy and I don’t understand a word, but I adore his dragons. His stories are an interesting blend of science fiction and fantasy with beautiful Asian touches I very much enjoy. This is the start of one of his dragons.
Thank you so much for the nominations!
The Sunshine Blogger Award from Cerrato Mom: A wonderful new mom blogger, she has an amazing site and some really great posts!
The Blogger Recognition Award from Housewife Hustle: A wonderful lifestyle blogger who focuses on mental health and body positivity!
Check out the other Digests here.
7 thoughts on “The Lily Cafe Digest #5”
Thanks Kat for your kind words! About the bits, I must say sometimes I don’t even understand what I wrote when I come back to it months after it 😀 😀 … tech is like this, I suppose
It’s very much another language, strange and unusual. But my son is showing signs of being interest in tech, so maybe one day he can explain it to me.
I’m loving your new story. Beauty and the Beast is one of my favorites, so any new take on it, I enjoy reading 🙂 but that aside, I think the story, even unedited, shows growth in you as a writer.
Also, thanks for the mention. I always appreciate it!
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Thank you so much! I never know if I’m growing as a writer, so it’s always nice to hear if it’s there from someone who has been reading my words for a while. And I really hope my version doesn’t disappoint!
Kat – I count it a high honor to have you mention my post in The Lily Cafe Digest #5. And I’m exceptionally thrilled that you enjoyed the writing ideas that I came up with to help my son in his writing journey. I will eagerly await your stories of life as a Mom of a Kindergartener. (I fondly remember those days, which aren’t too many years away for my youngest and a decade and some years away for my adult children.) Furthermore, I can’t help but notice the exciting renovations you’re making to your blog. I think it’s absolutely wonderful that you’re looking to help bring writers together with what you’re doing with your blog. I’m definitely all for it and don’t be surprised if you hear from me in the near future as I’m looking to be more of a participant in the writing community. Thanks for all the positivity you spread as you share your life and talents with the world.
I very much enjoyed your post and I think you have a lot of wisdom to share. It’s always a thrill to me when I have the opportunity to share something I love. I hope that one day I’ll be able to use your writing ideas. At the moment, my son fights writing with tooth and nail, but at least he doesn’t have the worst penmanship in his class.
I look forward to hearing from you! I love doing what I can to help writers. It’s not much, but the general feedback I’ve gotten from several writers is that anything helps. There are so many people with good ideas and great stories, but it’s so hard to make it heard these days.
Great posts; thanks for sharing them all!