I didn’t mean to take a six year hiatus from writing, I really didn’t. But as you know, life gets in the way of living sometimes. In reality I haven’t written fiction in six years. I have been writing lesson plans for my enrichment classes, which have been really fun. But it isn’t quite the same.
I’m not going to bore you with how it happened or the why. What’s important is what I’m doing about it. I have a new editor and all of my published books are getting an update, both fiction and non-fiction. I will also be publishing new lesson plans later this year.
All of this takes time. I have to keep reminding myself of that. It’s a marathon not a sprint. But I want to get all of them updated, right now! But that isn’t a reasonable thing to expect from myself.
What I do know is I am working on revisions. I have a schedule for getting the revisions done and to my editor.
What I don’t know is the release schedules yet for the updates. But when I know, you’ll know.
To keep up with my day to day please follow me on Instagram @beinglaurakmarshall
Recently the family and I visited OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry) for two different exhibits taking place. The big featured exhibit was Exquisite Creatures and the second was Gingerbread Adventures. Gingerbread adventures was more than a gingerbread building contest, it was also a look at the science behind gingerbread houses and other creations. Using the current Exquisites Creatures exhibits as inspiration four local teams of expert bakers, architects, designers, and construction firms worked together to make these holiday treats. Except for the bases and structural supports, each sculpture was built with edible materials.
Let’s dive in to the competitors entries. The entrants will be reviewed in the order they were presented.
First up is Holiday on the Bayou by SFA Design and Safeway. The birds, snakes, frogs, turtles, and dragonflies are excited to share their holiday cheer. The alligator is covered in pear jellybeans. Little Beatles work to decorate their home on the Bayou. I enjoyed the detail given to the bugs and amphibians that live in the bayou.
Second up is Life in Contrast by WRK Engineers, Ankrom Moisa Architects and Zest Bakery. A veiled chameleon attempts to bring down a dragonfly for dinner. Butterflies rise from light to dark. I was drawn to the colorful chameleon covered in sweet tarts and skittles. It’s tongue is made from sour stripes. I then saw the massive dragonfly followed by the butterflies.
Third up is Jingle in the Jungle by Scott Edwards Architecture and Sugar Cubed Cakes. Gillian Gecko is throwing a party and were all invited. Detail is everywhere in this display. From the animals, bugs, lizards, and frogs, to the furniture and landscaping. There is even an Exquisite Creatures gallery in a log with mini artwork. Absolutely amazing.
Fourth and final entrant is Arborvitae by LRS Architects and New Seasons Market. The tree of life. From gingerbread sand to lofty branches this tree gives life and protection to the animals that depend on it.
After viewing all four displays we were invited to vote for our favorite. I voted for Jingle in the Jungle. There was so much to look at from every angle. While voting I opted in for an email to tell me the winner of the contest. We’ll find out the winner at the beginning of January. Good luck to all the entrants.
This exhibit runs until January 2nd, 2020.
Follow me on Instagram @beinglaurakmarshall for more of my daily adventures.
I haven’t made New Year’s resolutions in years. Nope, not a one. I instead set my yearly goals on my birthday every year.
I do all the things you need to do to set a goal. I asses the past twelve months and the goals that I set. Did I meet them, what kept me from meeting a goal, what worked well, what didn’t. I also do a six month assessment of my goals to see if I’m on track or not. Once I’ve done all that, I decide on my new goals, tweak existing goals, or take a goal to the next level.
I write all my goals down. I actually type them up. Then I hang them up in my work area. Within each goal I have a short term and a long term goal. Some times I put in a stretch goal. Then I have the nuts and bolts on how I will achieve my goal. The nuts and bolts are always expanded once I get into working the goal. They are there as a starting point.
Here is an example of one of my goals.
Goal – Write and Publish Lesson Plans on Teachers Pay Teachers
Short Term – Publish 12 quality lesson plans by Nov 26th
Long Term Goal – Have as a sustainable source of income
Stretch Goal – Publish 20 quality lesson plans by Nov 26th
Nuts and Bolts
A. Devote at least 30 minutes a day to working on lesson plan content
B. Concentrate on lesson plans already developed
My goal is clear, publish 12 lesson plans by November 26th. Also what lesson plans I need to focus on, the ones I’ve already developed. Will I spend more than 30 minutes a day working on this goal? Yes, but giving myself the minimum I need to devote to it is key. There are days when crap hits the fan and I won’t be able to devote 2 hours a day to this goal. But I can always find 30 minutes. The time you devote to your goal doesn’t have to be in one large block. You can break it up through out your day.
My todo list is separate from my goals. Todo’s are the details of what I need to do as I figure out how to achieve my goals.
I whole heartedly believe in goal setting. I don’t think you need to wait until the new year to do it or a birthday. You just need to do it and then stick with them. Believe you can do it and do it now. Don’t wait.
Have you set goals for yourself, personally or professionally?
The boys got a real treat learning about Wild West weapons, specifically handguns and riffles. My uncle, their gruncle (great uncle), is an expert on Wild West history and weapons. My husband and father were also swept up in to the learning adventure. My aunts and I were having a blast watching this group of men so excited and animated over all these guns.
The boys learned about gun safety, how to handle a gun and the history of the guns and gun maker. My uncle let them put on leather gun belts with holsters and try his array of cowboy hats. They were over the moon. My oldest, Parker, loves guns and is fascinated by how they work. He was smiling ear to ear the entire time.
My uncle has, along with his gun and riffle collection, an extensive western wear and mementos collection. The guys tried on all types of cowboy hats and vests. My dad was in on the action and found a nice hat that fit perfectly. They were all having so much fun. My dad wore the hat all day. In the evening when we were about to head out for dinner my uncle gifted the hat to my dad. My dad felt very honored by that.
The whole experience was fun to watch and experience, but more than that, the boys were able to connect with a part of our family on a much deeper level. That to me is a priceless experience that we’ll all treasure.
That’s all for our family adventure for now. Follow me on Instagram for more.