Hello, blog-readers! Wow, half the year is gone already, and what have I got to show for it? Well, a lot of commissions done, for one thing. I admit, I’ve really been slacking off on the blog, and I’m sorry for that, but you know…commissions pay money. And truth be told, having at least a few hints as to what to put into the story is nice, too—not having to come up with everything from scratch. That said, I’ve got an amazing amount of work ahead of me: I’ve got a 30K-word commission I’m about a quarter of the way through and  several reoccurring commissions that amount to about 11K words per week. The awesome thing about that is, it’s a pretty steady revenue stream that will hopefully help offset some expenses earlier this year (I swear, the month after I finally paid the truck off, it decided it really needed me to spend a lot of money on it).

Let’s see, what else…I finally grilled myself a steak today. And it was so bad! That’s the last time I use the touch test to check for doneness. I followed the timing exactly, and then chickened out when it was time to take it off the grill. It felt so squishy that I figured there was no way it was cooked, and so I gave it many more minutes. The end result: well, it wasn’t shoe leather, but it wasn’t a whole lot better. Also, I should put my seasoning on and let it kinda soak in longer first. But hey, I finally took the plunge, bought a propane bottle, hooked it up, did not explode, and actually put meat to grill. Next time will (hopefully) be better. I freaking love steaks…

Still on track to have the credit cards finally paid off by the end of October. Man, it’s so close now… Of course, once I do that, I’ve still got another 30-something months until the property is paid off and the emergency fund is replenished, but hey, at least it won’t be the credit cards anymore, and I can finally start building some serious equity in this place. Now I’m just really paranoid. With all the expenses I’ve had this year, thank goodness for the commissions, or I’d be really far behind. I really hope I don’t have any more… Maybe I should shoot for winning the lottery… I am playing it twice a week. I figure for $104 a year, I get 104 chances of winning, which is infinitely better than 0 chances. If I’ve calculated correctly, I should have a 98% chance of winning the lottery if I play twice a week for the next million years (95% chance if I play the next 750,000 years). Whoo hoo! Still, stranger things have happened…

Zero progress on the relationship front. Ah, well. I figure if something happens, it happens. If not, well, at least there’s the herd. Oh, speaking of, I had the weirdest thing happen a few days ago: Ebony started lactating, and she’s never even been in the same barn as a stallion, let alone in the same pen. I didn’t think it was a problem, but she had kind of a hard lump in one of her udders. I was worried it might be either a tumor or mastitis, but it didn’t hurt her if I pressed on it. It was so cute, though: as I started milking her a bit (just trying to drain some of the pressure off in case it was mastitis), she nickered at me like I was her foal. It was kinda touching. I checked her temperature (completely normal) and called the vet. The vet said that as long as she’s not running fever, has a good appetite, and isn’t in pain, then it’s probably nothing to worry about. Sure enough, the next day, the lump had gone down considerably. I milked it again a bit, and now it’s totally back to normal. Weirdest thing, but it was kinda sweet, her nickering like that. Made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

Well, I need to go revise a commission and invoice for it, and then, time permitting, I ought to work on another one, too. The more I write, the more I make, and the more I make, the sooner I get into a real house!

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