Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Christmas, my favorite time of year!

Sorry for the silence lately, but I really suck at blogging! I think its mostly because I don't think anyone will find what I have to say is interesting and the fact that I don't want to bombard you with annoying promotion for my book.(The Creation Chronicles book one The Dragon Within) Hahaha.
So what better thing to talk about than my favorite holiday, Christmas!
     No matter what religion you are or what you believe, this time of year holds magic for everyone. It's a time of year when people give more freely, enjoy the wonder they see in their children's eyes, and experience the love that we all have in our hearts. I know this holiday season causes a lot of stress for people. The fear of not providing a happy Christmas for their families can be very overshadowing. But I think that if we all learned that age old saying that "its better to give than to receive" perhaps we would all be a little less worried. Sometimes the simplest of gestures is enough to make someone's Christmas magical.
     I remember when I was a kid my most fond and vivid memory had nothing to do with gifts, it was putting up the tree. My parents had these scented ornaments that had a unique smell that I loved. I can't remember what it was called but as soon as I smelled it I knew it was Christmas. I loved throwing that cheap tinsel all over the tree until it looked like a shaggy silver dog, and I remember when my mom made us pick it all back off to save it for next year! I remember all the times my bother and I would wake up insanely early and snuck out to get our stockings. We would always sit in my room or his and excitedly go through what Santa brought. When we were down we would quietly hang them back up and try and go back to sleep, but we never could quite fit everything back in the way it was, so we almost always got caught! You know I honestly don't remember any specific gift that I got a Christmas. All the things I do remember are the times I spent with my family. It's not what material thing you receive at Christmas that's important, it's the gift that someone gives your heart that you should cherish and hold on to.
    Now I know that when I was a kid hearing all of this would have went right over my head because lets face it when you are a kid life lessons don't apply to you yet. It is getting harder and harder these days to try and teach our children these things. There are so many distractions like, cell phones, tablets, video games, and computers. Our kids are always looking for the next best thing and we give it to them. I think we forget to stop and take a breath and realize that we are forgetting to teach our kids about what's most important about this time of year and that is to give. Not just the gift of toys or money, but the gift of love and perhaps even just their time. I know that spending time with my daughter is a priceless gift and I wouldn't trade that for anything.
     This Christmas while you are worrying about what to get everyone stop and listen to your heart. Your brain gets assaulted everyday and frankly needs a break sometimes. Do what your heart tells you and chances are the gift you give will be the best one of all.
Merry Christmas!!!

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

One Crazy Thanksgiving!

So if you live in Canada like me, this past weekend was Thanksgiving. I have so many things to be thankful for especially my wonderful family, but this Thanksgiving will always be one I remember for all the wrong reasons. Its taken me a few days to get over it and being the writer I am I thought I would share it with you. What you are about to read is not fiction and please don't feel bad if you start laughing, I did... eventually.

It was a rainy, gloomy day when I woke up Sunday morning and I should have took that has a sign to stay in bed. Rainy days and I normally don't get along, but I knew I had a large number of people coming over and I had a turkey to prepare. My turkeys are slightly famous and I had a reputation to uphold. So I pulled myself out of my nice warm bed and started getting everything ready. I had already been through this once this weekend with my side of the family on the Friday night. It went great! The food was perfect, the company was amazing and I got to spend some time with my family. Today was my husbands side's turn which is considerably larger but I've handled it before. My husband and I did some last minute cleaning, set the table, made the apps, and finally prepared the turkey. I personally don't mind preparing a turkey, which can be attributed to my youth growing up with a poultry business, but my husband hates it and I think its hilarious watching him squirm!

So sparing the rest of the mundane details, in no time my house was filled with the delicious aromas that comes with thanksgiving dinners. It wasn't long before my family started to arrive and that's when my luck took a dramatic change. I love my sister in law and her husband but for some reason karma chose him to start off my roller-coaster of bad luck. As he bent in for a hug the rather large and full bottle of wine fell out of the bag he was carrying and landed on my big toe. I swear I had never wanted to kick a man so bad in my life! Thankfully he didn't break my toe, and my toe managed to save the bottle from breaking, but I couldn't stand on it for an hour.

Thinking that nothing else could happen I gingerly hobbled around my kitchen, trying to finish dinner. Everything was fine until I tried to flip the roast potatoes. I reached down, pulled out the rack, took my hand away for a second to grab the spatula, and in that second the baking sheet filled with hot oil and potatoes decided to slide out, hitting my one leg and splashing the scalding oil on the other. I was stunned, and it took me a second to realize what had happened and that I was in some serious pain. Someone got me up on to the counter and put my legs in the sink. Oh did I forget to mention that I was wearing a skirt so my legs were bare! After a few minutes of very cold water therapy I wanted nothing more than to crawl up to my room and disappear for the rest of the night, tending my burns. I felt so embarrassed and really I just wanted to hide before anything else bad happened.

You may think that nothing else could possibly go wrong but, surprise it did! I had told my husband to carry on with dinner with out me. My leg was in too much pain and I just wanted some time alone in my room to recover. Half an hour passed and my husband returned from downstairs. He had a horrible look on his face and my guts went south. I asked him."What's wrong and why wasn't everyone eating yet?" It was then that he informed me that the baked mashed potatoes I had made had been placed on the stove when I had my accident with the roast potatoes. They kind of got forgotten about. My husband carved the turkey ( which was perfect) and placed the plate beside the stove. Now this part is a mystery. I don't know why but the glass casserole dish that the mashed potatoes were in decided to shatter. It literally exploded showering my beautiful turkey with glass. This dish that I had used hundreds of times picked this special moment to almost destroy dinner.

At this point I really couldn't keep it together. All of my hard work ended up in the compost, but after awhile I calmed down enough to go downstairs and I was greeted with something I didn't expect. Everyone was happy and having a wonderful time! My bother in law had gone out and grabbed some pizza and they ate it with the stuffing, veggies and ham that didn't get ruined. It was not the perfect dinner that I had envisioned in my head, but it didn't matter. We were together and that was a beautiful lesson I learned that day. No matter what situation you find your self in, its your family that will always pull you through it.

So that's my Thanksgiving story for this year. I hope yours wasn't as eventful but I also hope that you got to spend it with your amazing families as well. After all that's what Thanksgiving is really about and I think we all need to be reminded of that sometimes.


Friday, 4 October 2013

Proud to be a Stay at Home Mom

For quite a while I questioned the fact of my worth to my family. I know that sounds horrible and you must think my self-confidence is sitting in a toilet somewhere, but hear me out and you may find some of you feel the same way.

I’m a stay at home mom and I found that this sacred and elusive job does not get the credit it deserves. I’ve been at home for over nine years now and it’s hard for most people to see the accomplishment in that. Being a parent is the best job in the whole world, but it is a job that doesn’t make you any money. I felt guilty about that for a long time (which drives my husband nuts). I was surrounded by family and friends that not intentionally made me feel like I was doing something wrong. I sat and had drinks or dinners, listening to their stories about work and how stressed they were, and tired. They worked all day, went home to take care of kids and do housework. They said that I wouldn’t understand, that I was lucky and could just stay home all day and…what? Do nothing? Is that what they wanted to say? Some probably, yes, but they are wrong. Just because I don’t bring home a paycheck doesn’t mean I don’t work. I work very hard for my family every day and to think that I haven’t sacrificed things is a gross understatement, one such thing is my identity.

I used to love going out and having drinks with friends. Believe it or not I was once quite a social butterfly, but over the course of the years of me staying home I lost that. Now whenever I think about being social my stomach ties up in knots and I have a panic attack. I’m not a therapist, but I do know some of the reasons I’m like this. One reason is the fact that I do spend so much time alone now. During the school months I spend the majority of my day by myself doing what needs to be done. Sure I have the computer and phone but it doesn’t take the place of interacting with real people. For a time a volunteered, and I even joined a gym, but for some reason I fell in a rut. I didn’t know how to talk to people anymore. I felt judged and I was so afraid I would say something stupid, so I isolated myself and it’s been hard to pull myself out of this pit I fell in. That’s one of the main reasons I wanted to write my book. I wanted people to know that I was still here even though I had felt like I had disappeared. Things are getting better though. I have friends at my daughter’s karate and I’ve met some pretty cool people by promoting my book.  My husband is my rock and without him I think I would have lost it a long time ago. He is the only person in my life who has never judged me and accepts, no, encourages the lifestyle we have chosen. I’m not back to the way I was but I’m working on it.

I feel like I’ve gotten off track with my mental breakdown, so let’s get back to the main topic here shall we? Through all this rambling my real point I wanted to make was that I’m proud to be a stay at home mom. I’m proud of the fact that I’ve helped raise a beautiful daughter on my values and not someone else’s. She learns things from me, not a babysitter or daycare and it’s her parent that she always knows will be there when she needs them. Please all you working parents don’t get angry with me because I am in no way criticizing how you raise your families. I just don’t want to be criticized anymore either. I want to be accepted for who I’ve chosen to be and not what everyone else thinks I should be doing.  Our jobs are all the same whether we get paid or not. Our job is to provide and take care of our families. We all have different ways of doing this and as long as we are doing right it shouldn’t matter how it gets done.

I am I working mom and I’ve learned that I don’t need to get paid to feel justified. My worth to my family is priceless and I wouldn’t change a thing.

Friday, 27 September 2013

I Need some Blogger Help!!!

Hi everyone! I hope your day is going great and you are outside enjoying this beautiful fall weather! I was wondering if there were any bloggers out there who would like to help me with my up-coming re-launch of The Dragon Within? I'm looking for some promo and I'm willing to offer free copies for review and do some interviews. If you are interested give me a shout back or if you know of anyone else who might be interested please direct them my way. Thanks so much!

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

New Author

Hey everyone! I thought I would introduce myself. My name is Cindy Lyle and yes I am yet another self published author trying to make a mark in the world. Don't worry I'm not going to sit here and plug my books or tell you why you should read them, I just wanted to say hi! I've actually been published for over a year but recently I've changed publishing companies and I plan to re-launch my first novel The Dragon Within. I did a lot of work on polishing my first book and I've added a series title and changed the cover.

This experience has been a lot of fun but as many of you know is bloody hard work! I hope someday to have at least three books in The Creation Chronicles series and I encourage every budding author out there to never give up! Your dreams are attainable and so very worth the journey to get there.


Why I write Fantasy

Someone once asked me why I choose to write fantasy. At the time I thought it was a very odd question. Why do any authors write what they write? Why is Fantasy any different?

I think for a long time people associated Fantasy with "geeks, or weirdo's". You know the people that hung out in their mothers basement and played D&D, or the people that would dress up as their favorite characters and act out a scene. I think what you have to look at is why do these people choose to do these things? It's an easy answer, its an escape. Haven't you ever dreamed you could just pick up and leave your life just for a little while? To go somewhere no one would ask you "When is that report done? Hurry up we have a deadline. Mom, can you drive me to the mall?" That is what Fantasy is for me. I can sit down in my little quiet corner and open my book and be whisked away to another world. So you might be thinking, "Yeah, but I can do that with any book, and don't have to deal with all the magic, monsters and gore." I agree with you, you can do that with any well written book, but there is always that level ground of the places you know and the people you could imagine to be real. The illusion is very thin.

Fantasy is different but the same in many ways. A lot of people think that all fantasy is, is magic, epic battles, and fantastical creatures, with no relatable characters, but that is not true. Of course Fantasy novels are filled with all of those things, but there is also a story. Everything that a person goes through in their lives can be found in a Fantasy novel. Just because our characters may not look quite human, that doesn't mean they don't act like it, after all a human created them. The characters fight for whats right, make mistakes, fall in love, and yes sometimes do unspeakable evil. When you were children didn't you ever imagine you could fly, or that you could be a knight and defeat a dragon, or maybe if you were lucky catch a glimpse of a unicorn? I know I did, and I guess maybe as we get older that part of our imagination dies along with our childhood innocence, but that doesn't mean we can't remember it and secretly enjoy the feelings we had when we thought monsters were real.

Writing Fantasy for me was an easy choice. I wanted to create my own world, that no one else could touch. I wanted to control what happens and not worry about messing up facts or history. Everything I write comes from my heart and I bleed that into my characters. To me they are very real and go through very real emotions and trials.

I want you to know that I didn't write this to convert anyone into reading Fantasy, I just wanted to try to answer that long ago question I was asked. I hope I did. So next time you see a book cover and see a dragon, or vampire, or wizard on the front, don't automatically pass it by. Pick it up, read the back, and listen to that child inside your heart. You never know you might be pleasantly surprised.