Last night, when I finally took a break from grading a mountain of papers, I had two choices. I could write a blog entry, or I could try a word sprint and see if I could write 1000 words on my novel before I passed out. I think we all know which activity I picked!

NaNo is relentless. You really can’t afford to get behind or it becomes insurmountable. In fact, it’s best to get ahead before Thanksgiving hits, especially if you’re the primary chef in the family!

So, this will be a quick catch-up post before I go back to my class preparation.

Sunday afternoon, we had a nice long chat with Lina, after being unable to reach her the weekend before. Also on Sunday afternoon, Walter laid the last few strips on the living room floor. When one of our regular Sunday dinner guests came early, we enlisted his help to move most of the furniture back into the living room.

I have taken a lot of flack for my decision to change the layout of the living room. My kids are nothing if not traditionalists. My goals were twofold: to make the room feel more spacious, and to make it more practical. For instance, the shelves of DVDs are now right next to the TV, instead of behind a bunch of stuff at the other end of the room. We got rid of four pieces of furniture and replaced them with another tall bookcase (castoff from the university) which takes up minimal floor space. I honestly believe that once the newness wears off, everybody will love the new layout.

The primary casualty of my new design is my recliner. There is no good place for it in the new set-up, so I am thinking of moving it to my office. The chair I’ve been using in my office will fit in a corner of the living room and will be easy to move out to make room for the Christmas tree later.

And yes, there will be photos once we get everything set up again and pictures hung, etc.

Yesterday we did school and I spent every spare minute trying to get through my mountain of grading. In the afternoon we had our 4-H meeting, which Jasper looks forward to so much each month. I made some queso and took it in the Wonderbag. It was still piping hot when snack time rolled around. It also disappeared quickly! I got quite a bit of grading done during the meeting, because I couldn’t afford to stop.

Speaking of grading, I have a little more to do. . . .


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