A new week...a new contest...

This week in honor of my dad's 88th birthday, I'm holding a Reader's Choice Contest, giving away three autographed copies of either Michal or Abigail, winner's choice. All you have to do to enter is post a comment on any of my three Fan Pages on Facebook - at my Jill Eileen Smith page (link is on the right of this blog page), Michal: A Novel's Fan Page or Abigail: A Novel's Fan Page (click the links to reach the pages.) Contest runs until Sunday, April 18, 2010. If you do not have an account on Facebook, please leave an email address in your comment or through a direct message. Good luck to all and thanks for helping me celebrate my dad's birthday! In other news - I finished a proposal for a new series and sent it off to my agent last weekend. Now we wait. I'm already in love with the characters in the first story and hope I get to write the book to share with my readers. But we'll see what God has in store. Right now, I need to focus my energies on Sarai's story, which is about one-third done with too many words. Much editing awaits the future. :)

We spent Saturday finalizing a decision on new windows for our house. Our current windows are the originals, putting them at about 35-40 years old. They are very hard to open, if at all, and not energy efficient, though thankfully, they don't seem to leak much. Still, I can't wait to have windows that will let in a cross-breeze and actually look nice! Of course, that just makes me want to paint every wall to offset the pretty white trim...

My kitchen is on the list to be painted once my son finishes school. He's taking off old wallpaper, which is not a fun chore. In our first house, we had a gold and green kitchen with the ugliest floor ever! When we could finally afford to change it, I chose blue, my favorite. But times changes as do tastes, and I'm back to favoring green, though the shade has changed and the floor is not ugly. :) Everyone needs a home makeover (however small) once in a while! After 22 years, all of our "new" is now old. It's time.

I'm judging for the Genesis Contest again this year - five more entries to judge. I hope my comments are helpful to the authors. I remember how much such feedback can mean, and it's nice to help as others have helped me.

Been missing my guys a lot these days. While Skype is wonderful, it's not the same as a hug. I know it could be worse - it's only been three and a half months since they were here, but I think I'm still in that adjustment phase because three months seems terribly long, especially since I know it will be several more before we can see them. Sigh. Someday God will answer my longings...

I've been listening to Amy Grant's new CD Somewhere Down the Road and loving it! She has several songs on there that speak straight to my heart, but the one that keeps playing in my mind when I awaken during the night, is "I Can Only Imagine." What will my heart feel when I finally see Jesus? Will I dance and sing? Will I fall down in silence as so many before me have done? What a day that will be!

In the meantime, I really do need to start my daily word count. Unfortunately, blog posts don't count toward that total!

Happy Monday~ (Don't forget the contest!)