Quick Update

Updating About Nothing…

It’s been six days since I last updated, which kind of stinks because I was doing so well at updating regularly. However, my life has been a bit hectic lately, so I haven’t had any time. If I told you why I was so busy you wouldn’t believe me, although if you follow me on Twitter then you probably know that someone pushed my “Mom” button and I haven’t yet been able to figure out how to turn it off.

Yes, I have been babysitting all week. I am not going to go into details about it because then this post would take up the entire internet. Let’s just say that I regret getting my driver’s license six months ago.

I have been babysitting left and right this week and working on the new Sunday school curriculum for my church (my sister and I direct the Sunday school together). We have a meeting with the other teachers and our Reverend this afternoon so I have been trying to get everything done for that, as well as before it starts. I’ll have less time to focus on it when everything starts due to work and school. But I thought it was all good because I figured I could get everything I needed to get done this week and last week and such so that next week, my last week of freedom before school, work, and Sunday school start, I could just write until my fingers fell off. So, needless to say, I haven’t written since my last post on this blog. And it’s ironic because that last post was about me being super productive with my writing…

Here’s the catch: Due to financial problems, one of the teachers at my work got laid off. I work in a small private preschool and there’s only five of us: the director, the two teachers, and the two teacher assistants. I was one of the assistants. The other assistant quit last year (she was in the nursing field and graduated, so she went off to go live her life being a nurse) so we were looking to hire someone to replace her. Obviously instead of hiring someone, they let someone go. So now I have more hours and responsibility at work as I am being bumped up to lead teacher status with the other teacher. Which is great for me, but it sucks on how I ended up getting the position…we’re all very depressed that one of the teachers had to be let go.

My point is instead of starting back to work September 3, I start back on Monday. Yeah. 9-2 next week, so at least I’ll have the rest of the afternoon to write and get things done, but I was looking forward to having the whole day, the week in its entirety. But what are you going to do?

So basically I updated this to tell you that I have nothing to update. I was doing so well with my writing, but this week has been…blah. Today I’m babysitting Sam, Jackie, Kat, Cailey, and Juliana (the last two are my neighbors) until about three o’clock. Then I have the Sunday school meeting at four, then I have to babysit Hayden and Lyla (these kids are friends of a child I have at my preschool) at seven tonight probably until midnight. Maybe somewhere in there I can get a little writing in…hopefully. I’ll definitely bring a notebook tonight when babysitting. Hayden and Lyla are young, so they’ll both be in bed by eight.

We’ll just have to wait and see how everything plays out…but I am utterly exhausted.

Advertisements

The Babysitting Adventures of Rachel

It’s Gonna Be A Best-Seller…

Starting back in the summer of 2010, I started babysitting two boys. I only watch them during the summer as both of their parents work while the kids are at school, which is nice. They’re one of the few families that actually have the parents home when the kids are home that I know of.

So this is the third summer I’m watching them. The oldest, Jack, is now 13 and the youngest, Sam, is 11. The oldest has ADD while the youngest has ADD and a touch of Autism. They get along really well, but…you know, they’re brothers. Despite their special needs, Jack is actually capable of being home alone for a few hours and watching his little brother. However, he torments poor Sam half of the time. So instead of actually “babysitting” I get paid to “referee.” And it’s funny because last summer was horrible, but Jack has actually matured with age…for a boy. I honestly don’t think I need to be there. But I love hanging out with the two of them, so why not?

Anyway, the whole point of this post is to talk about what Sam wants me to do. We drove my cousin and her friend to their swimming lesson a few weeks ago. The swim lesson was only a half hour long so we stayed there to watch. Sam had his Nintendo DS and his Pokemon to keep himself company. I planned on playing my game, but I found myself caught up in watching the kids swim. But somehow Sam got a hold of my iPod and was looking at my calendar.

“Camp NoNoWr…what?” Sam stammered to read my July entries.

“Camp NaNoWriMo. It stands for National Novel Writing Month.” I laughed at his pronunciation and corrected him.

Of course, Sam has no idea what that is. So I explained the whole thing to him simply. Judging by the look on his face, he wasn’t all that impressed.

“Geez, Rachel…I knew you were a geek, but I didn’t think you were that much of a geek.” he scoffed.

Honestly, I was kind of surprised at how offended I got. Of course I was laughing, but I never really thought writing would be categorized as being a geek. That was certainly the first time I heard that, but I just don’t think Sam knew what to think about it.

“Hey, it’s writing. Writing is my career.” I replied and he stared at me funny. “Well…I want it to be my career. I want to be an author someday…sooner rather than later, I mean. NaNo is something that helps me get closer to that goal.”

From the look on Sam’s face, I now had his attention. And he seemed to understand, too. Yet, he was still confused because he knew I’m going to school to be a teacher and he knows I’m a teacher at a preschool. I explained I went to school for teaching as a day job just in case selling books doesn’t bring in enough money. But I am going to get my Bachelor’s in English. Being with children and writing are two of my favorite things to do. I can easily do both and if writing becomes more of a priority…well, my books are all picture books, middle grade, or young adult. It’s still kid stuff. He nodded an approval at my plan.

Then the wheels in his head began to squeak. Then they moved slowly and before I knew it, the rust was dusted off and the wheels were turning five miles per second.

“The Babysitting Adventures of Rachel!” he exclaimed. “You should write a book all about you and me and all the fun we have together! I bet you it will be a big hit!”

I found this amusing. Sam texts me throughout the school year every once in a while and when the summer nears and his mom and I start planning a schedule for me to babysit, he’s always calling me on the phone super excited. His mom tells me he constantly talks about me and she’s so happy by how much he loves me. If the child is not happy about the babysitter, then there’s an issue somewhere. But I was excited that Sam took an interest in my writing and he was trying to help me out. Although, at first I thought it was just him being 11, but then I realized he was serious.

“You can talk about me and you and Chance!” he continued on and on. “I guess Jack can be in there…maybe you can put Jackie and Katherine in there, too.” Then he whispers: “You know, just to be nice.”

–Let me stop to explain for a moment: Chance is his dog, Jack is his brother (as previously mentioned), Jackie is my cousin (the one who was swimming), and Kat is my other cousin (Jackie’s little sister). Continuing on…–

Then I asked a question I shouldn’t have (but I still thought he was joking): “How long should this book be?”

“Um…100 pages!”

Uh…what? Wow, he really thought this through in the past five minutes, didn’t he? Then he stuck out his hand and I shook it.

“What’s this for?” I asked.

“So I know you’ll definitely do it.”

Well, crap. Now I’m stuck. I have an 11-year-old wanting me to write 100 pages all about our fun together. How was I going to pull this one off? He had to be kidding, right? He was probably going to forget about this whole thing by tomorrow, anyway…right?

After I finished babysitting that day I thought long and hard about our conversation. I began laughing to myself and thought: challenge accepted.

A few days later (yes, he remembered), he told me that he wants it to be 256 pages now. Random number, right? I don’t get it, either. However, I did say challenge accepted, but I don’t think I’m going to be able to write that much about us. All we really do is go in the pool, play with the dog, and play Pokemon. Seriously. I’ll make the story 100-256 pages. No less than 100, no more than 256. But I doubt I’ll get to 256 pages.

I realized that I am probably going to make Sam’s life when I write this book. Of course I’m not going to write it ready for publication, but it helped spark a middle grade series idea (with the help of Kris when I told her this story) that I think I am going to write. And who knows? Maybe it will be the “next big thing.”