This has been one crazy summer.
It began at the beginning of June when I flew down to Austin, Texas to help my oldest daughter, Shannon, and her family relocate to lovely Northeast Ohio. They spent six weeks with us as they searched for a new home, and then made some updates on the property they found. Much to my delight, they found a house in a neighboring community and are now happily (I hope) settled just twenty minutes from my house. I now get to see my daughter and her two children, Carston and Faith, on a regular basis. Needless to say I am pleased.
While Shannon was moving closer, my second daughter, Anna, was moving a bit farther away. She used to live ten minutes from my house. But her husband was recently hired as a police officer in Euclid, Ohio (A suburb of Cleveland) and had such a long commute from their home here in Copley that they decided to move north. They, too, found a lovely home in a quiet neighborhood in Mentor, Ohio, just twenty minutes from Kirk's work. I am happy that they found a great home in a great neighborhood, but am sad that they now live an hour away. It's not nearly as convenient for them to drop by, and I didn't realize how much I liked those visits until they stopped. Recently I was driving Gracie over to the middle school, the neighborhood where Anna used to live, and it made me sad knowing they were no longer there. But enough of that before I get teary.
Just after Anna moved, and just before Shannon moved from our house to their new home, I was able to take an unexpected trip to the British Isles. Doug was invited to a business meeting in London. The meeting fell over a planned getaway trip for Doug an myself. Doug felt so bad about ruining our plans for the getaway (which was to the Scottish Games at Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina) that he suggested that I accompany him to London. He suggested that we stay a few extra days and make a trip up to Scotland. I thought about it for at least a nano-second and then agreed. We left on July 9th and spent a few days in London visiting a few sights and seeing Shakespeare's play, Henry V, at The Globe and then went by train to Edinborough for a few days. We took a day tour of the Scottish Highlands, toured castles and palaces. Needless to say, it was wonderful. I LOVED Scotland and look forward to returning some day.
We were home less than a week when Bethany came in for a visit. She was helping her mother-in-law drive a vehicle cross country and they stopped here. Bethany spent a week hanging out with us and making us all laugh.
After she left, Doug, Mary Jo, Gracie and I packed up and headed to the beach. We spent a week at Hilton Head staying in our favorite place, The Island Club. It's right on the beach and where we always stay when we go to the island. We did absolutely nothing, but eat out a few times and spend our days on the beach playing in the sand and surf and reading.
We came home and the very next day Sarah came home for two weeks, followed a few days later by Matthew and his wife, McKenna. I'm starting to believe that I need a revolving door on the front of my house.
I've spent the last few weeks sporadically helping Gracie get ready for school, which started this week, and pursuing some writing leads. I had another publisher interested in David's Song. A friend of mine had sent me a link to Melange Books. I sent them a query and sample of my manuscript and they quickly replied requesting the full manuscript. I was somewhat optimistic at acceptance there until I perused their website a little closer. The books they published had ratings for how hot and steamy they were. I suspected that David's Song might be a little too tame for them, which I found ironic. Sure enough, a few weeks later, I received and email telling me that where David's Song had merit, it wasn't what they were looking for. Funny how it's too risque for one publisher and not enough for another. Now in all fairness, Melange did not say that, but I think they were looking for more than a blip on the steam meter. I am in a quandary on what to do about my writing. I am leaning more and more toward continuing to self-publish and try my hand at marketing a little harder. I have had many requests for the second book in the trilogy and hate to make my handful of readers wait.
Things will return to normal here in just a few days. Mary Jo has started her senior year of high school and Gracie has started her last year in the middle school. My older children will return to BYU for their last semesters before graduating. When I think about it, I realize that with a family the size of mine, it will always be in flux. I guess I should just hang on and enjoy the ride.