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Where I’ve Been, And Why

I haven’t done well at keeping my promise to myself that I would write at least one blog post per week for this blog. For the three people who will actually read this post (she said facetiously), and who may be wondering why I’ve been away from this blog for a while, I wanted to explain.

The main reason is that I finally realized that I’m supposed to focus my time and writing on novels, not blogging. For whatever reason, God has called me to be a novelist. I say, “for whatever reason”, because I know there are a lot of Christians out there who believe that reading for pleasure, even if the stories are clean and uplifting, is on the edge of sin.

Christians are supposed to constantly be working like slaves to save the world. Never supposed to have any fun. Therefore, any form of entertainment is a waste of time.

Go ahead and disbelieve me that I’m not called to write novels. I’m not going to waste my energy arguing with you; I need it to fulfill God’s call on my life. 😉

So, I’ve been away because I’ve been working on Book 5 in my “Pine Mountain Estates” series. Having completed the first draft of that novel, I decided to work on the major editing that a previously published novel requires before I write the other two books in its series and get it back into the public eye.

Still, I could find time to jot a few paragraphs once a week to publish here on my blog. But another reason I haven’t is that I’ve been busy in the garden.

I may write an entire post about this sometime. Right now, suffice to say that God never called me or my husband to be homesteaders, to try to be self-sufficient at any level of food production. Which is why, my thick head finally figured out, just trying to succeed with a basic summer garden has had me constantly frustrated and stressed out.

And, by the way, I’m not a newbie at this. I’ve been gardening for the past seven to eight years. And I’ve had enough success to keep on with it. But it’s not where I’m supposed to be spending my time.

Ditching most attempts at gardening will open up more time to write, thus I’ll be able to keep this blog more current than I have been.

Finally, about a month ago I began using a special reading and spelling program to teach our son to read – that is, to get his reading level at least up to that of the average twelve-year-old, if not higher. He is dyslexic, and for three years I stuck my head in the sand and believed the unschooling community’s lie that even dyslexic kids will magically learn how to read by their mid-teens with little to no help.

B knew the phonics basics, but struggled to get beyond that because he kept confusing vowel sounds, confusing the “b” and “p”, and remembering phonics rules. I realized a couple of months ago that nothing I learned in my thirteen years of teaching was enough to help him. After a little online digging I encountered the Barton Reading and Spelling program, which is a systematic phonics program written specifically for dyslexics of all ages.

Yes, it’s working for us! B has made notable progress since we started the program around a month ago. However, we spend about forty minutes a day going through the lessons, so that makes it a little harder to find time to blog on top of working on novels.

But really, it’s giving up the garden – at least, giving up my attempt to grow as much as I’ve been trying to grow – that’s going to be the biggest time-saver. And maybe not even working in the garden per se is the problem, but working in it when it’s 90+ degrees (F) and 70+% humidity. Doing so saps all my energy and makes me irritable. And not inclined to do anything extra. Like, say for example, write a blog post.

So, there you have it. Where I’ve been, and why. I plan to see you again inside of two weeks.

In the meantime, may the Lord bless you and keep you, and may His face shine upon you and give you the peace that surpasses all understanding.

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