Guess Who’s Not in Canada Anymore!

That’s right! Me! My husband’s work contract expired and they didn’t extend, so we moved back to Utah in April to get our feet back under us.

Let’s look at pictures of adorable kitties moving across country! Waltz has always had issues with traveling in the car. He’d cry and cry and cry the whole way back and forth to the vet or any other surprise short trip we’d do to try and get him used to the crate. When we moved out to Canada I bought a small dog-sized carrier for him since he’s a big 14 pound cat and his little box was too small to stretch out in on a long drive. He ended up riding out with my dad and brother since I had to fly to Canada earlier than expected and I heard he pretty much hid most of the time, but started to get a little brave the last day. It’s a 4 day trip.

When we moved in to our Canadian apartment we got Hazel. She makes Waltz happy and comfortable, even in the carrier! With her in the crate with him there’s not a single peep from either kitty while driving to and from the vet. Hazel has never had an issue with riding in the car, that is until the big move. My dad and brother flew out to help us with the move back to Utah and brought a regular-sized cat carrier for Hazel. She was NOT happy to be in a separate box from Waltz. Waltz was fine knowing she was in the same car, although not happy to be in a box, but Hazel was all cry cry cry! She put up enough of a fit that we let them both out after we’d made it onto the highway.

Hazel wore herself out in the first 30 minutes on day 1 of complaining about the box, which irritated her eye, so she spent most of that day asleep in her box.


On day 2 Waltz was so excited/anxious about the whole deal he spent some time panting in my hubby’s lap. Hazel felt lots better so she ran around the car hollering. It took me a while to figure out she was calling for Waltz. She’d get in the trunk and cry cry cry until he’d get up from wherever he was sitting, usually in hubby’s lap (he’s apparently best human and always the chosen seat for Waltz), and go over to watch her over the top of the back seat. She settled down once he decided to sit in front of her box for a bit.


Day three came and I decided we didn’t need both cat carriers in the car since Waltz was spending all his time outside of them. We put the smaller carrier in the moving truck and rearranged the back seat.  Turns out that Waltz did want to hang out in the carrier, he just hadn’t been able to before. He and Hazel managed to share! They almost never cuddled before this. At one point I took a turn driving and Waltz sat in my lap for almost five minutes. Hubby took pictures of that to prove that sometime I can be best human too.

The last day both kitties spent most of their time in the carrier. Hazel did decide to come hang out in the driver’s seat when we stopped to get gas. Waltz was all excited to be back home and Hazel adjusted to the new environment almost immediately.


And that’s how traveling across country went with the kitties.

So… my plans obviously went not as hoped…

Hiiiiiiii.

It’s been six months since my last post. I had hopes and dreams! They did not work out.

Where have I been? Well, I’ve been trying to produce a webcomic all on my own while writing novels and trying to have a social life/any kind of life in general. I’ve learned that I need to focus on one instead of two big things at a time. Writing novels is a big project. Solo producing a comic is a big project. I can’t do them both and stay mentally healthy, so something has to go on the shelf.

Stories are my passion, especially writing them, so the thing I’ve chosen to shelve for now is my webcomic. Fur & Fangs is a story I love dearly and want to give the best treatment I possibly can, and I’m a much better writer than I am an artist, so for the moment I’ll focus on writing it and maybe find a way to make it a comic later. It might end up being a novel instead, or a novel and a comic. Either way, the comic itself is going on indefinite hiatus until I have a solid story and funds to hire someone to help make it happen.

This does not mean I’ll stop drawing the characters or making art! Art will be more of a hobby now, instead of a job, which means I can go back to drawing the things I love to draw and growing as an artist. I was unable to do anything except comic pages while trying to comic, so my critter designs and experimentations got dropped. My artistic skill-growth stagnated. Now I can grow and play with my art again like I used to love to do!

This means I can blog again! Somehow I couldn’t fit it in with two big projects, but I should be able to do it with just one. Like I said in my last post, I have a lot to catch up on here on the blog.

Now the big question is, how do I now want to structure my artistic career? I need to earn money somehow, and right now I’m not really making anything. I have a Patreon that was structured around Fur & Fangs. Now it needs new rewards and goals. I have some budgeting to do to see if I can afford to become a streaming artist. The internet in Canada is metered, and I can only afford to maybe stream once a week with the plan I have. I also have games I want to play and stream. Streaming takes a LOT of internet. Internet isn’t cheap. ūüėõ

So, yeah. Big changes happening for me over the next couple weeks! New goals! New website should happen! Yay! Fun times!

Anyways, this post is getting long. Hopefully things will become more clear to me in the next few days and I can give you a more concise plan next time!

Laters!
-A Ro

 

A Moment of Freedom

So, remember my WIFR post? Remember the post I did just before it where I mentioned being so excited to be done with a job and focus on writing and arting? Well, just before WIFYR I got called back in again to that job. I returned to it right after WIFYR. NOW it is finally done. I am free. And with that freedom I spent the last two and a half weeks helping a friend re-roof a little shed-barn-thing, played Guild Wars 2 like a maniac, and overall avoided being productive. Yay? I felt like my brain needed a break. That, and staring into the future of no required work and a boundless list of potential projects left me feeling a little lost.

Okay, maybe a lot lost.

But hey, I want to get back on track and working. I’m doing projects now! I have the script for the first three chapters of my webcomic figured out and waiting for review from an esteemed beta reader, my story timeline for the series I’m working on is now falling into place, and I have the starts of a Journey cosplay. I also got all my Brilliance in Action comics all queued up on the new comic website and it will be updating on it’s own through December! Go check out the new site: here. It still needs a header image, but it’s so much better than the site I had before.

Stay tuned for more posts from me! Hopefully I’ll have more time? No promises, though. I did apply today for a seasonal position at a local farm, so I might be working again soon. ūüėõ There’s stuff I still need money to pay for.

WIFYR 2015

I’m trying to get back in the swing of things now that WIFYR is over. ¬†However, I got called back in to that freelance gig for a couple more weeks. ¬†I agreed since I know it’s very close to done, but it does postpone my ability to be a full-time comic artist and author. ¬†I will be there soon, though! ¬†Sooooooon!

So, WIFYR. ¬†It was great. ¬†I saw my wonderful teachers and friends Carol Lynch Williams and Jake Parker. ¬†I got hugs from both of them. ¬†I like hugs. ¬†In fact, Carol demanded I give her 80 hugs over the course of the week, so I made sure to hug her every time I saw her. ¬†I think I only managed around 21 hugs. ¬†I’ll do better next time!

I took a boot camp novel workshop with David Farland as the instructor. ¬†There were ten other people in the class as well, and we critiqued the first 55 pages of all of our novels. ¬†It was a humbling and enlightening experience. ¬†They critiqued my stuff on the first day, and I totally thought I could handle it, and I did. ¬†It was great. ¬†All the verbal comments made sense and I could see the trend of what I needed to fix in my story. ¬†However, then I got home and read the written comments. ¬†It destroyed me. ¬†I never thought I’d cry from being critiqued, but I did. ¬†After reading comments from half the class I felt like I’d failed as an author. ¬†My story seemed so very, very broken. ¬†The next day I attended a panel on revisions and then it dawned on me that my story isn’t broken, it’s just a work in progress. ¬†Then the day after that I read another written critique from a classmate and they understood every part of my story. ¬†I didn’t fail. ¬†That helped me feel a lot better. ¬†As long as someone who knew nothing before reading it understood it, I succeeded. ¬†Now to make it accessible to more people, after I finish this draft.

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Here’s me and David Farland! He’s holding my sword. I brought it to show off the last day of class.

I also had the opportunity to practice pitching to an editor, and then to get a practice query letter critiqued by the same¬†editor and an agent. ¬†I received a lot of helpful input, and the editor asked me to send her my manuscript when I’m done! ¬†EEEEEEEE! ¬†I think that made my week.

Overall I had a great time. ¬†I’m definitely going again next year.

Summary of the Last Two Months

Hi everyone! ¬†The last two months have been busy. ¬†The next two weeks will also be busy. ¬†I’m attending Writing and Illustrating For Young Readers (WIFYR) in two weeks and I have a bunch of stuff to do in order to prep for that.

So, the last two months. ¬†I worked at a slow but steady pace on my novel, succeeded at NaNoWriMo camp, rearranged my studio (still in the process of that), and visited Texas for a cousin’s high school graduation. ¬†The freelance job I took up lasted two and a half months instead of two weeks, so I’m a bit behind on everything and where I wanted to be at this point in the year, but it was good. ¬†It gave me enough money to buy some protective equipment for my new HEMA hobby AND a shiny new professional artist level printer.

This month I plan on trying to catch up as much as possible around preparing for and attending WIFYR.  It will be a challenge, but I am so ready to get back to arting and writing as a career.

A Laundry Mystery

Soooo, I was trying to figure out why my sheets weren’t getting dry in my parent’s dryer. ¬†This morning I ran my new sheets through my washer and then remembered Dad wants me¬†to use their dryer because he realized my¬†dryer vent is venting to someplace inside the house instead of outside like it’s supposed to. ¬†So I ran up and stuck them in their dryer as I left for¬†church. ¬†Upon arriving back home¬†I discovered¬†the sheets still wet. ¬†I figured they’d just gotten too tangled up, so I pulled them apart and stuck the fitted sheet back in. ¬†Once the machine finished the sheet remained¬†wet. ¬†This confused me. ¬†It was evenly damp. ¬†No part had dried at all. ¬†Was the machine broken? ¬†I asked my parents and they gave suggestions, so I stuck it back in and changed the settings. ¬†Then, as I watched my cat watch the machine start up with anxious curiosity (he’s not allowed upstairs without an escort), it dawned on me. ¬†That was the washing machine, not the dryer.

Oops.

So now my new top sheet and pillowcases have been washed twice, and the fitted sheet thrice.

They’re all in the dryer now.

It’s Camp Time!

Camp NaNoWriMo that is.

For those of you who don’t know, NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month. ¬†It happens in November and you aim to write 50K words in one month to get well on your way to having a novel. ¬†Camp NaNoWriMo happens twice during the summer (April and July) and it used to be exactly the same. ¬†This year they’re letting you set your own goals. ¬†Since I still have that VFX job going on and some major editing to do in the next ten days for a workshop, I set my goal for revision and 20,000 words. ¬†I’m still behind, but that’s okay. ¬†I’m going to do a lot of catching up today.

An update on the sword equipment. ¬†All of it was too cheap, thin, or didn’t fit, so I’m sending it all back. ¬†I’m going to wait to build up some money and shop around at local sports and motorcycle stores before making my next purchase. ¬†Anything worthwhile costs a lot.

Hiiiiiii

Phew! ¬†Wow. ¬†A month flew by, didn’t it? ¬†Well, it did for me.

I got a freelance VFX compositing job this month and have been working on that along with taking care of¬†friend drama. ¬†I got overwhelmed and behind on everything at home, but at least I still managed to write. ¬†I get to commute on the train to this little job, which gives me a good hour and a half writing time through the day. ¬†Thanks to that I was able to rewrite the first two chapters of my webcomic in my notebook. ¬†It’s so much better this time around!

I also hermited this week and got caught up on all the home stuff, just so you don’t worry about me. ¬†I’m fine now. ¬†ūüôā

I’ve been slowly getting better at wielding my longsword, and am using the money from this job to start building up my sword fighting equipment, like shinguards, chest padding, and a motorcycle jacket with lots of protective plastic plates. ¬†I’ll have to get a picture of myself in it once it all shows up. ¬†HEMA is turning out to be a more expensive hobby than I expected, but it’s so much fun and well worth it. ¬†Two weeks ago I got a cramp in my right arm from clicking a mouse so much in a position I’m not used to. ¬†While rubbing I noticed I had some muscle mass there. ¬†I then rubbed my left arm and discovered it had less. ¬†I’m getting sword arm. ¬†Now I need to start practicing things left handed to balance myself back out!

Spring Hike 2014 – Timpanogous Cave and Alpine Loop

On May 31, 2014 I went on a hike with my father and husband to Timpanogous Cave. ¬†It was a very nice little spring morning on the shady side of the mountain, which was good since we’re all (except my hubby I guess) kind of out of shape and going up an incline is hard. ¬†We stopped for a lot of breathers. ¬†Taking pictures is a good excuse to stop and breathe, so I took lots of them. ¬†Have a look at some!

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Some kind of plant growing out the side of the rock wall.

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Bird in a tree!

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Some yellow flowers.

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It’s a tiny tunnel.

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A pretty purple-pink flower.

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Millipede!

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My dad taking pictures.

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Look at the contrast of the shadow side of the canyon versus the sunny side!

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I liked how this broken-off branch stump looks like a cloven hoof.

We hiked all the way up to the cave. ¬†It’s kinda up there. ¬†The cave was pretty cool. ¬†Too dark for pictures inside, but beautiful and fun and we had a fantastic tour guide. ¬†Something I found extra cool about this cave was that it had a door! ¬†There was a door in the mountain!

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It looks so cool! I want a story with a door in a mountain now.

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Close-up of the door.

We took long enough in the cave that the sun had moved over the mountain and we walked in the sun on the way down.  Lots of animals ran around and I had fun getting pictures of them.

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Lizard!

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I like the shape of this tree.

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The other side of the cool tree, with my hubby in the background taking pictures of something.

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Some pretty little yellow flowers.

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White flowers.

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Pretty red flowers.

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The red and white flowers together.

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Dangling flowers.

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There were a bunch of humming birds, but they’re hard to see sometimes. I hear them humming and buzzing around and then they zip by so fast. This is the best picture I was able to get of one. We stopped and stood and watched the humming birds for a while, and this little guy came and drank from flowers only three feet away from us. It was pretty cool.

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Chipmunk!

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I am so pleased with my chipmunk pictures! He sat still for a very long time chewing away on his grass seeds.

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Om nom nom.

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They’re so cute. ūüôā

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Yummy nummy grass!

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And then there was a squirrel!

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He was really close the the trail, so I was able to get some nice detail shots for reference.

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Tree roots get everywhere.

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Lichen! Did you know that lichen is made of a fungus with algae living in it? It’s a combination of two different kinds of life.

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More lichen. It looks so cool! I love the colors and patterns and textures.

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Sedum.

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Moss!

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My dad taking a picture of me.

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A thing in the ground.

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I love her outfit!

After the hike my dad drove us around the alpine loop.  Back in the day when he and my mom dated he would drive her around this highway on a Sunday afternoon.  It was really pretty.  Here!  Have some pictures:

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Backside of Timpanogous, I think.

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I liked the composition of this. I noticed this while I rested my arm on the ledge with my camera on.

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Simple mountain road up in the mountain tops.

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Lots of pretty pretty aspen trees!

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Even more pretty aspen trees!

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More pretty trees!

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And some meadows!

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I love mountaintop meadows.

Ta-da! ¬†That was my pretty weekend hike and drive with my Dad and Hubby. ¬†I would do it again. ¬†I must hike more this year! ¬†It’s the only hike we managed in 2014.

A Cup of Valentine’s Sugar

Valentine’s has never been a big holiday for me or my husband. ¬†Our very first Valentine’s together as significant others was during the school week and we had big projects to do in our 3D Art class, I think it was the wearable art project. ¬†We worked on our homework that night. ¬†On that project we learned that Wal-Mart can run out of elmer’s glue by two in the morning, at least when a project requiring lots of glue is going on at a college. ¬†We went on our little Valentine’s date on the weekend after we finished the project. ¬†He also bought me a discount rose from the day-after sale. ¬†I still have the little tall square vase it came in.

Since then we haven’t done much. ¬†It’s just another day of the week, but sometimes we would go out for dinner. ¬†This year I went to LTUE (Life,The Universe, and Everything) a writing conference in Provo. ¬†I signed up for it and realized later that it occurred on Valentine’s day. ¬†I didn’t think much of it since Valentine’s hasn’t been a big deal.

I’ve been wanting a Pyrex glass 1C measure since my Anchor one is loosing all its markings from getting washed for five years. My Pyrex 8C measure gets used almost as much as that little Anchor one and isn’t losing any of its markings. ¬†My hubby doesn’t like spending money unnecessarily, so I figured he wouldn’t want to get a new 1C measure when I have one that still functions.

I came home from LTUE and found a towel & ribbon wrapped package on the banister. ¬†Inside was my new glass measure cup with a ziploc baggie of sugar in it. ¬†He got me a cup of sugar for Valentine’s day! ¬†I thought that was super cute and I felt very loved that he got me something even though I didn’t quite need it yet. ¬†I love him!