I’ve been cyber-hibernating

Have you ever found it difficult to get back into your daily routine after an extended holiday? Well, following the Christmas break, I went into turtle mode, tucking myself inside my shell, ignoring most things on the internet and my in-box on my computer. I can’t say I’ve done anything useful to replace all the time I used to spend reading blog posts and Facebook comments, except to admit I got hooked on a particular game I downloaded on my Hubby’s new iPad.

Yes, I have to admit, my name is Susan and I am a game-a-holic. It all started out innocently enough. Hubby went to a work-sponsored poker tournament and came home with a brand new iPad Air. He’s not much of a techno-geek, and neither am I, really, but he asked me if I could get the thing set up for him. I was a little nervous, at first, afraid I’d do something wrong and crash the device, but it was actually pretty simple. Since he wasn’t around to consult with when it came to setting passwords, etc. I came up with things I thought he’d find easy to remember.

All seemed fine until Grandson came for a visit. In anticipation of our precious little whirlwind, I thought I’d check out a few simple apps that might hold his attention for more than a nanosecond. There were a few free Disney games – or at least, a taste of them – and one that completely hooked me: Nemo’s Reef. I suppose it’s like the Farm games where you collect animals and feed them, except this one immersed the gamer in the wonderful colours found under the sea, with relaxing Caribbean-style music. I found myself tapping the screen thousands of times a day, harvesting ‘sand dollars’ and ‘algae’ from the corals and other living flora I planted. The sand dollars were used to buy the plants, the algae was used to feed new plants as well as the fish I collected. It became a total obsession, I am ashamed to say. I even went so far as to create a list of all the fish and when I last fed them because I had collected so many that I was having trouble keeping track of them! I finally realized I couldn’t possibly keep up with all those hungry fish unless I was tapping the screen 24/7. A few days ago, I deleted the game and feel so much better – and I’m finally getting stuff done around here!

So, I apologize that I haven’t been around to read any of your wonderful blogs. I have missed a lot, I’m sure, and I will try to catch up. That, however, might take awhile as I have about 4500 unread messages (mostly blog post announcements) in my in-box, right now. Please forgive my total lapse in judgement and I promise to be a better blogger. 🙂

However, I may have to make a quick trip out to visit a sick friend in Edmonton in the next few weeks, which might set back my blog reading, again. I assure you that’s not just an excuse to return to the game. My lifelong friend with MS has been suffering with some minor brain aneurisms, causing short term memory loss and, as of the past few days, some aphasia and paralysis along her right side. I want to get the chance to see her before things get worse (although I pray that won’t be the case) and, maybe, having me there will help in her recovery.

See you all on the flip side! 🙂

So Sorry For My Cyber Silence

camera photos 009

Let me begin by sending birthday wishes to my April Fool’s kitty. He is now 13 years old. He’s beginning to show his age – a little arthritic, like me & Hubby. He’s starting to slim down and his digestion isn’t as good as it used to be, but we still love him and hope he stays with us for many more years.

With that said, I want to apologize profusely for my my absence over the past month and thank those who expressed their concern. I appreciate you guys looking out for me. 🙂

I think my muse must have wondered where our spring weather was and was so depressed by the high snowbanks, unending snowfalls and frigid temperatures in March that she decided to go on vacation! As a result, she wasn’t around to motivate me into writing at all and is it any wonder? Here’s what it looked like out our windows, front and back, on Saturday – more like January than March. Blech! 😦

March 30, 2013

The snow bank is up against a 6 foot fence!

front, March 30, 2013

View across the street.


Another reason for my lethargy might be my overloaded email box. I’ve tried to keep up with all the blog posts that enter daily, but some time back in November I missed a few days of blog reading and it has snow-balled from there. As much as I love what you all have to say, I haven’t totally succeeded in keeping up with all of you. The enormity of this task has been a little overwhelming. I will start back again slowly, but it could take awhile before I get around to reading all the great stuff you have been doing.

We still have my brother-in-law living with us, recovering from the severe burns he received back in October. His inability to used his hands has meant that I have been playing nursemaid, chauffeur and companion, which leaves me very little time to even keep up with household chores (although if I were truly honest, housework would be last on the list of things I want to do, but it still needs to be done).

In addition, on Easter Sunday, we had a gathering with the in-laws where we celebrated 23 birthdays and 3 anniversaries (those from January to end of May), not including my birthday, both of my children’s birthdays and my son-in-law’s birthday as well as my anniversary. I’ve also had several close friends and family members with birthdays in February, March and April. Everyone expects a handmade card from me so I had my work cut out for me, especially since I make each one unique and try to make them different from the ones I made for them the previous year or two. I’ve been eating, breathing and dreaming card-making. I’ve spent considerable time on Pinterest trying to find ideas for cards. All-told, I think I must have made 3 dozen cards over the past month or so. I have taken pictures of them all and since they have now been given out, I won’t hesitate to show them to you during the next few Crafty Wednesdays.

I still have to finish reading and critiquing a friend’s Regency Romance novel. I’m really sorry that I haven’t been able to do this as quickly as I hoped! On top of all that, I have two more very large novels to read for reviews coming up this month…

…which brings me to some really exciting news: representatives from Penguin Books Canada discovered that I do interviews and book reviews on my blog, so they have asked me to do an interview with Julie Czerneda and review Guy Gavriel Kay‘s latest novel! I guess the whole social media thing actually works!


Image of RIVER OF STARSI have scheduled Julie’s interview for Sunday, April 16th so please drop by then to see what she has to say about her new novel, A Turn of Light. When I finish reading Guy Gavriel Kay’s River of Stars, I’ll post a review, as well.

Also this month, I have been asked to sit on several panels of a new local literary event called the C4 Lit Fest. It’s kind of a spin-off from Comic Con but will be directing its panels and workshops to writers especially those who write fantasy for teens. This means I have to prepare something to say at each panel and make notes to rely on in case of audience questions. If any of you are here in Winnipeg April 20th & 21st, you might want to check out our guest writer line-up and panels here. You can find more information about getting tickets here. It should be a lot of fun.

In closing, I want to say, I hope you haven’t all deserted me for being so silent these past few weeks. I promise to be more diligent with my blog writing and reading from now on. Thanks for your patience. 🙂