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And… it’s all over :)

until 2020, anyway! The CCC musical, Conundrum, was an absolute blast… and now the adrenaline is wearing off, I’m realising I’m the most exhausted I’ve ever felt in my life. And my back is SORE!

But it was worth it to see the smiles on the kids faces. And I learned heaps too 🙂

And check out these beauties!!!

Very blessed.

See you next week… I’ll have managed some sleep by then!

God bless,

– KRidwyn

I GOT A MEDAL!!!

My first ever 🙂

So I took a break from creating the sets for the musical I’m directing (opening night just 4 days away, tickets available on 07 5436 6777) and took Miss13 and Miss10 to the Sunshine Coast Womens’ and Girls’ chess tournament. They begged and wheedled, so -for the first time ever – I entered myself, as well.

It was scary! But I’m glad I did.

Miss 13 earned 2nd place in U18 division.

Miss10 won the U13 division (her sister’s title from 2017).

And I came 3rd in the Adult division! Woot!!!

Here’s praying that you have a successful week too, dear Reader!

— KRidwyn

in which I get pragmatic…

I’m directing a musical at the moment. Performance dates Thursday 9th and Saturday 11th August. That’s pretty close! And it’s a pretty huge undertaking – over half the student population of my school is involved, in one way or another.

So because everything’s ramping up and I’m getting even less time to blog than I usually would, I’m going to make this post short and just say, YAY! We’re alive and have the chance for happiness, both for ourselves and to bring happiness to those we interact with every day 🙂

Here’s praying you have a wonderful week, dear Reader – a blessed week, a happy one!
– KRidwyn

Review: WRITING WITHOUT RULES by Jeff Somers

As a Reider – a commenter on (literary agent extraordinaire) Janet Reid’s blog – I was fortunate enough to hear about this book, WRITING WITHOUT RULES by Jeff Somers.

Now, I’ve read numbers of titles on ‘how to write and sell your book’, ranging from Stephen King’s ON WRITING to Chuck Wendig’s THE KICK-ASS WRITER. These particular two have stood out to me as the two ends of a spectrum, and many, many, MANY other titles within that spectrum have inspired me and encouraged me in my whole ‘get-your-butt-in-your-chair-and-get-your-novel-finished’ aspirations.

Not since reading Catherine Deveny’s USE YOUR WORDS though, have I read a more down-to-earth ‘just write, and finish what you write’ philosophy espoused so clearly. And it’s exactly what I (in my current “I can’t do this” frame of mind) needed to hear. And the footnotes! Hilarious!

Jeff’s wit sparkles, and I laughed aloud throughout each of the 20 chapters. The first ten chapters – on writing – were more applicable to me than the second – on selling – however now I’m in the winding down chapters, drafting Book 6 of a 7 book series, I can see that the latter half of his book may indeed become more important to me in the (hopefully not too distant) future.

As Jeff Somers is a client of Janet Reid’s, and as I am an unashamed Reider familiar with her take on literary agenting, it was not only a pleasing confirmation to note that her own views are firmly held by her client, but that the ‘inside jokes’ he made, were ones I am also (partly) familiar with. I smiled, I laughed, I took copious notes, and the fact that emblazoned across the back cover demanded that I:

STOP WHAT YOU’RE DOING AND WRITE!

YES, YOU: WRITE!

made me smile every time I picked it up. [Because even though the blurb insisted I write, the premise behind actually being able to read the hard-cover book I’d been given for my birthday (thanks, Mum!) was that I needed to stop what I was doing – even if my current activity were writing – if I was to read the book!]

But it was worth it. Worth missing out on the writing time. Because it’s a great book. And it you’re an unpublished writer – or even a published one, come to that – you’d find this a good read. And if you missed clicking on that link at the top, it’s here again now if you wanted to buy it directly from Jeff Somers’ blog.

And have a great week, dear Reader!

– KRidwyn

 

 

in which I contemplate the joy that is Beerwah Writers’ Group

Back before I was working full time, I joined my local writers’ group. It was fantastic, the fortnightly face-to-face interaction with people who shared my passion for word-smithing.

But the constraints of my current day job meant that I haven’t been able to attend a meeting since January of 2017 – and even though some meetings fell on school holidays, at no point was there a meeting I could attend, due to family commitments, being away, or meeting cancellations.

That is, until the meeting just gone. Friday 13th. I walked in, surprising many people, and it was as if I’d never left. It was fantastic!

I love that idea – that I could be part of a supportive group of writers who, in spite of my 18 month absence, are just as continually supportive of me and my writing as ever before 🙂

I look forward to the next time a meeting aligns with a school holiday – because such a wonderful group of people are a joy to be with.

Here’s wishing a close support network for you too this week, dear Reader!
– KRidwyn

In which I contemplate how amazed I shouldn’t be

I keep telling people how amazed I am at my quick recovery from the evil back injury I suffered recently.

Monday 25th June, 10am. The last Monday of term. The doctor who was treating me said he thought I’d be immobile for two weeks, and he’d be able to get me back to ‘normal’ (mostly pain-free) mobility by the end of 5-6 weeks.

Shock doesn’t even remotely describe how I felt. But then again, I was also in childbirth-like agony at the time, and my brain cells weren’t firing anywhere near their usual capacity.

I left the doctor’s office and called my boss, relayed the news, emailed my colleagues. Put the diagnosis out on Facebook. Then I received message after message after message, from friends and family near and far, who offered their support – and their prayers.

I was touched. (And in agony. And tears – many, many tears.) But determined to do everything I could to aid the healing process. The doctor had said ‘ice’? I’d be the ice queen! He’d said ‘horizontal’? I wouldn’t move a muscle!

(Admittedly, the phrase ‘off work for the rest of the week’ did *not* mean that – ask my Mum, who watched me plough through marking paper after paper, responding to email after email, proofing and writing report after report, all in a horizontal position either facedown or face up, ten minute interval changes, non-stop, from 5am until 9pm-ish!)

And wouldn’t you know it, but by Friday 2pm I was back at school. On crutches, but vertical. Yes, you’re probably thinking, ‘stupid!’ but I’d missed the kids terribly and wanted to see them before they left on two-and-a-half-weeks holiday, pray with them and for them, and testify to them just how amazingly their prayers for me had worked. That I was vertical, and walking on crutches, and was amazed at my recovery – but SHOULDN’T HAVE BEEN!

Because I’d been holding fast to James 5:16. Especially the second part:

“The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

Because I knew what the doctor didn’t – that the God who had made me, and who had let me go through this experience for His own good reasons, was able to heal me as well, for His own good reasons.

And He was doing exactly that! I should not have been able to be mobile – and yet, I was. And now, two weeks later, I should be starting to achieve pain-free mobility – and yet, I have it! Sure, sometimes it’s uncomfortable, but I’m just happy to be upright and without crutches 🙂

And in conversations with many, many, many others since then, I’ve been telling them how amazing my recovery has been – and then realising, over and over and over again, how amazed I should NOT be by this.

Wow, our God is an incredible God, isn’t He?

I hope you too, dear Reader, are having an AMAZING day today 🙂

And see you next week!

– KRidwyn

A ‘Laggard’ but wishing I weren’t…

What feels like aeons ago but only because of my life-sleep balance, back when I was studying marketing, I discovered the ‘Diffusion of innovations’ theory first espoused by Everett Rogers in 1962. It seeks to explain how, why, and at what rate new ideas and technology spreads.

First up are the ‘innovators’ (roughly 2.5% of society) who, when first aware of the new idea, embrace it.

Second come the ‘early adopters’ (13.5%) who jump on the bandwagon once they know there’s a bandwagon.

Thirdly, the ‘early majority’ (34%) who jump aboard; followed by the fourth category, unsurprisingly labelled the ‘late majority’ (also 34%), who agree to join in after knowing about the idea and deliberating for some time.

And finally, the laggards also adopt the idea, either after significant refusal, or without realising that they have adopted it.

And I feel like I’m a laggard – but not intentionally. Rather, it’s lack of time which has meant that I only recently – after hearing all the hype about first the book, and then the subsequent movie – bought myself THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN by Paula Hawkins, and found the time to read it, too.

And whoa; I’m so glad I did! It intrigued me from the first page and I found it incredibly difficult to put down; the last book I felt this way about was GRAEVALE by Lynette Noni and that was explainable – it’s Book 4 in her Medoran Chronicles, so I already have history with her writing.

But this one? THE GIRL ON THE TRAIN? Read it if you can; if you haven’t yet.

It’s worth it!

And have a great week, dear Reader!

KRidwyn

#blogJune 2018 wrap-up

Wow – what a month it’s been! I knew, starting the #blogJune challenge this year would be difficult… I just didn’t realise exactly how challenging it was going to be!

So the month started by introducing the whole #blogJune challenge, and my theme (blessings) for the rest of the posts. Then I followed this with:

#1 Getting an incredible (impossible!) car park

#2 Finding the hiding engagement ring

#3 Knowing a fellow driver would be safe

#4 Dancing smoke

#5 Lightning flash when I needed it

#6 my Hubby’s surprise

#7 purchasing (and collecting) a mobile phone storage box in an impossibly short time frame

#8 free family entertainment – and awesome entertainment too!!!

#9 My new gym 🙂

#10 Hubby being awake before me…

#11 Family, friends, and youz guyz sending me birthday wishes 🙂

#12 Gilmore Girls

#13 My #WritingRace friends – youz guyz ROCK!!!

#14 Colleagues who go the second mile 🙂

#15 My Mum – the reason Hubby and I could get a night away together!

#16 New sunglasses

#17 Miss10’s laundry skills

#18 Being able to see 🙂

#19 Heat – natural and electrical – both are great!

#20 The incomparable Mr Stephen Dittman – thank you, my friend 🙂

#21 A different perspective on vomit…

#22 Raindrop, splatting on my head

#23 Strawberries!

#24 Nurofen Zavance…

#25 Dr. Matthew Smith

#26 My Knight (well, Lady) in shining armour 🙂

#27 Additions to the #TBR pile

#28 My schoolkids and the absolute delights that they are!

And that was it for the month! Twenty-eight blessings which I thank my God for, not even a scratch on the surface of the myriad of blessings he pours out on me day-after-day-after-day-after-day and you get the idea.

He is just SO incredibly awesome. And I’d encourage you, dear Reader, if you’ve never sought Him before, to do so. To trust Him, because He is truly the one and only One worth trusting!

And even should you choose to not, then maybe just try the whole ‘count what the good things are in your life’ because the change in attitude which develops is also pretty cool 🙂

Anyway, I’ll get off my soapbox now. Have a Blessed rest-of-the-week, dear Reader! And I’ll catch you all on Monday 🙂

— KRidwyn

 

Sipping from the saucer #28

I work at a Christian school. The pastor of the church which established our school has a saying: “The LORD has blessed me so much, my cup is overflowing (taken from Psalm 23) and I’m sipping from the saucer.”

I like the visual, so I’m using it here, in this month-long blogging challenge focusing on the blessings God has poured out on me. And finally – nearly 9pm on the second last day of June – blessing #28.

So if you’ve been reading recently, you’d know that I injured my back (herniated two discs) last Saturday, and spent pretty much this whole week on painkillers and icing my back FAR more regularly than I’d like, in between spinal adjustments at the doctor. By yesterday afternoon I could handle over 45 minutes before it started getting uncomfortable – and the doctor was surprised when I walked into his office without the assistance of crutches. The power pf prayer, huh? Because James 5:16 is DEFINITELY one I’ve been holding on to this week!

Anyway, today was the last day of school before our mid-year holidays. I’d organised a HEAP of stuff to happen this week at school, and unfortunately had been away for all of it. But I *really* missed the kids, and seeing as it was really going to be problematic for Hubby to pick up our cherubs this afternoon, I thought I’d brave the sitting and the driving, and go collect them. And arrive early enough to see the donations we’d collected at our major fundraiser for the semester, being given to the representatives of the animal shelter we’d fundraised for at our final assembly.

And thus: my blessing for the day. No sooner was I out of the car than Middle Schoolers saw me. “Mrs Bloxham! Mrs Bloxham! You’re here! How are you? Wow! You’re here!” – a veritable chorus of kids who were surprised and pleased to see me, who wanted to wish me well, who’d heard of my injury and who had been praying for me -it was SO beautiful, to be welcomed back so warmly!

And thus ends my litany of blessings for this year’s #blogJune. Tomorrow’s post, my final one for the month, will be a ‘wrap up’ post. And then the blog will return to its regular Monday morning post. And yay for that, cos I’m tired!

Anyway, here’s hoping that your day was a blessed one too, dear Reader 🙂

— KRidwyn

Sipping from the saucer #27

I work at a Christian school. The pastor of the church which established our school has a saying: “The LORD has blessed me so much, my cup is overflowing (taken from Psalm 23) and I’m sipping from the saucer.”

I like the visual, so I’m using it here, in this month-long blogging challenge focusing on the blessings God has poured out on me.

And now, blessing #27: the books Mum ordered for my birthday – which arrived in time for her to bring when she came to stay on Monday just gone 🙂

I’m partway through WRITING WITHOUT RULES by Jeff Somers – laughing my way through, more accurately. It’s a great read, and I’m learning about the writing craft at the same time, so a twofer and I like that 🙂

And what with the holidays officially starting this afternoon, and my (meant to be) being on minimal movement in an upright position… having a second brand new book to look forward to is a wonderful thing!

Here’s wishing you a blessed day too, dear Reader!

— KRidwyn