Chai And A Chat #14 #ChaiAndAChat

Welcome all to the first Chai and a Chat of the year! I trust you all had a good one! Now, go get your drink, snuggle in and we can catch up!

  • If we were sipping chai together  I’d tell you that I am actually quite proud of myself! I said I would not post, and aside from a new years message, and a Blogger’s Bash reminder, I stayed true to my word! It’s been hard though. As I get notifications of the weekly challenge, I am having to force myself to not save them all, and resign myself to the fact that I am going to miss a few weeks worth! But it’s all for a good cause…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that I have been really good! I have been doing my reread and tweak-style of editing every day, bar one where I was physically too tired and I have done over a third of the book so far! I created a little page in my journal too, to keep me motivated and on track, where I colour in boxes representing chapters each time I get another one done!
That’s me at the start of my Saturday morning!
  • If we were sipping chai together  I’d confide in you that I have even contacted a couple of editors for quotes and advice on what next, because if I go Indie, I need to fund all the professional stuff myself, whereas a traditional publisher would pay for all the editing, polishing and tweaking stuff required. There is a lot to take in, developmental editing, copy/line editing, critiquing, alpha/beta readers, then formatting, blurb and cover… It won’t be easy, but I am on a mission! I am still toying with the idea of reaching out to agents, to see if there is a chance of traditional publication…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d also mention that I started a new group on Facebook – Kick Ass Kreators – a kind of online accountability group, where we can post our achievements on whatever we are trying to create at the moment, and ask for help or a virtual kick up the backside to keep us on track for reaching goals… if you want to join, you are most welcome! Just click here!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that I have started a new hobby too, to keep me calm – hand lettering! It’s not the same as calligraphy as there is more of an element of individuality to what you write, but I love experimenting with new pens and paper! And Lil Princess has also caught the art bug again, after getting a lovely art set for Christmas! She has been experimenting with watercolour wash pieces, and we even collaborated on a piece of art!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d say that I didn’t make a resolution this New Year, but rather an intention, or rather, a few… the first was that I intend to do something with this book this year! Another is to look after myself. Because if you don’t look after yourself, you can’t be there for others properly… Obviously, there is the eating well and lose weight stuff, but I just have to try hard on that… I am finding it hard for some reason, this time round to stick to any decent eating plan… chocolate and cookies are to blame!
My lettering again!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you that I was fully intending on having a relaxed last day before school started again on the Thursday, but that didn’t happen! Instead, I got an idea in my head that buzzed around like an annoying fly and until I had fulfilled it, the window in my brain wouldn’t open, to let that fly out! It was to totally restructure the furniture in my kids’ bedrooms! So there I was, alone, as it was an impromptu idea, lugging bookshelves, beds and desks around, to create a different, more productive environment for both of them. It worked, but not before unearthing all sorts of mouldy rubbish from under my teenage son’s bed, and finding all manner of awful ink and paint stains on my daughter’s cream (😣) carpet! Oh and the dust! I was sneezing for England! Still, I managed to finish it all and ended up an aching mess on the floor by the end, groaning because I knew I still had to be fresh and ready for school the next day! A bubble bath soothed the muscles, but nothing could get me to sleep that night… and it was the same for the kids. A fortnight of messed up sleeping patterns meant no one was ready for an early bedtime!
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d tell you school was actually pretty great! The kids came back happy, and for the most part, healthy! My own two woke without a fuss on the first day too ( a true surprise, as I have been used to battles every morning to get them ready in time!) but the tiredness was there… and on Friday, I was honestly ready to be a bad teacher… If I could, I would have put Youtube on a loop, sat my afternoon kids in front of the screen (which they would have loved!) and curled up in the corner to catch a few zzzzz! But I couldn’t do that, could I?
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d whisper quietly, that the weekend planned was a very quiet one… lots of rest, once the grocery shopping and house cleaning was done, reading, eating (healthily) and editing…
  • If we were sipping chai together I’d have to mention that I have been increasingly worried and frustrated about my parents! I guess this comes as they get older. We couldn’t see them this holiday for various reasons, but on Christmas day they told me they were without heating as the boiler had sprung a leak that caused some damage which could not be repaired in a straightforward manner. Now, I knew of the leak before and was under the impression things had been sorted out, but no… they left it to Christmas morning to slip in the fact that they were sitting, wrapped up, in their living room, with plug-in heaters and no hot water either! Of course, they wouldn’t entertain the idea of coming to us, because “what if the pipes freeze and burst while we weren’t there?”  (it has barely been below freezing, so no chance of freezing pipes, but too cold to be in a house with no heating!) and the saga continued as they discovered there was some issue that involved specialist equipment to clean some pipes or something like that… Then, the icing on the cake, when mum called me to mention, in a slightly panicked voice, but with a layer of “don’t worry, we’re okay” smoothed over the top, that ” We don’t have electricity, and I am alone, as your Pops has gone to class, and no, he doesn’t know because he forgot his phone at home, though it’s not just us, the neighbours just came round and they are in the same boat – they have small children too, so it’s terrible for them – and I’m okay, I have candles.” I wanted to teleport then right here, but no, there was no movement! The electricity company came round and it was something big that needed repairing so they ended up with a generator so at least they had power overnight, and the roads were dug up the next morning to restore normality! And the hope is that the heating issue will be fixed by Sunday… I’m still waiting to see if it is all sorted! Hate being so far away from them, not able to do much more than get myself worked up, and offer comforting words…
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that I had a great chat with my brother and sister-in-law in Finland one day and there is a possibility of they coming over to the UK in the Spring, so I may finally be able to give my Finndian nephew #2 a real cuddle! That is something that will totally keep me going once they set a date!
  • If we were sipping that chai together, and possibly reaching for cake or cookies I’d tell you that the next week should be a relatively quiet one, so hopefully a straightforward school week, with no surprises, and lots of editing opportunities!

So… tell me about the start to your New Year!

115 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rae Longest
    Jan 30, 2019 @ 00:37:57

    What a start to the year! I was fifteen hundred miles away from my parents as they aged, and working full time, so I understand your position and concern.

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  2. Masha
    Jan 27, 2019 @ 20:29:45

    Well I’m off to a great start. I’m honoring my word for the year “mindfulness” and trying to incorporate it into every day, especially when it comes to my health. And so far so good, putting my self care first. I’d like to join the Kick Ass Kreators, but I’m not sure how involved I can get. Thanks Ritu love your post here

    Liked by 1 person

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  4. Corina
    Jan 12, 2019 @ 23:03:29

    Three things. First, I would be happy to read your WIP. That’s what I do. I won’t charge you. I’ll do it for free, one blogger to another. Second, I love hand lettering and have been wanting to take it up. I can do calligraphy but I haven’t tried hand lettering yet. And third, don’t be too upset at your parents. I know I don’t like to bother my kids so I keep a lot to myself and yes, it all comes out when it becomes an emergency! It’s just that we, older people I mean, don’t want to feel dependent on others and don’t want to bother anyone. That’s just the way we are. You might have a checklist of questions that you can ask them when you talk/write to them; one that would get at some of the things that they didn’t bring up that might need bringing up!

    Happy 2019! May you be very successful in your self care! Yay you!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Jan 12, 2019 @ 23:36:20

      Thank you so much Corina!
      You are so lovely!
      I may just take you up on the reading!!!
      I’m loving the lettering. It’s so creative and free!
      I know… It’s hard, that transition from being the independent heads of households to the ones who might just need a little help … But I’d never want them to lose that!
      A very happy new year to you too 💜

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  5. Invisibly Me
    Jan 12, 2019 @ 17:05:56

    Oooo lots of goodness to share over the chai! The hand lettering is so pretty, I’d quite like to try that too. I’m not sure whether I’d find it therapeutic or frustrating though as I get a bit antsy when things aren’t ‘just right’ (need to work on those perfectionist tendencies!) ‘Kick Ass Kreators’, what an awesome name for a FB group! Have a lovely weekend, Ritu 🙂
    Caz xx

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  6. fancypaperblog
    Jan 12, 2019 @ 10:43:10

    Sounds like a good start! I am trying to keep calm this year and not get overwhelmed. I like calligraphy too and ironically I have terrible handwriting but a nice Script!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

  7. Danni Ever After*
    Jan 11, 2019 @ 20:46:52

    The start of this year has felt like flipping a switch – crossing that line from 2018 into 2019 I feel like I’ve woken up. Even my friend who pulled a tarot card for me last night commented that my energy doesn’t feel nearly as heavy anymore. Cheers to 2109!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  8. shanjeniah
    Jan 10, 2019 @ 22:35:11

    I’ve missed you!

    For me, the new year started quietly, in the company of my teens. I was still rather exhausted from my heaving and ho-ing of furniture, since we decided to restructure the furniture in our long, narrow living room, and I did a lot of the work while my 6’3″ son was sleeping.

    The beginning of the year will now always mean the coming of the anniversary of my husband’s death on the 12th. Sunlight and shadows, together.

    The kids want to go out and have donuts on Saturday to remember their dad, so we’ll be visiting a local bakery to pay tribute. He was a chef, and his motto was, “Eat dessert first.” He would approve.

    I’ve been reading Intuitive Eating… which has space for the healthful foods and play foods. This makes me happy… I love vegetables and whole grains, chocolate and pie… and chai!

    I hope your parents’ heating issues hare all sorted now.

    It was lovely having chai with you!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Jan 11, 2019 @ 07:03:35

      Good to hear from you too Shan.
      Bitter sweet times, eh…

      hugs for you.

      And the heating/water etc is finally sorted for my parents!! Yay!

      Chat soon!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

      • shanjeniah
        Jan 12, 2019 @ 00:58:34

        Yay! We are without heat other than from our wood stove at the moment. Our fuel ran out a few hours before the delivery came, and we aren’t sure we know how to bleed the lines and get it going again. So we have a full tank of kerosene, and no heat in most of the house.

        We’re going to give it a try in a bit. If we can’t do it, I’ll call a serviceperson in the morning, and see what we can do. I’d rather not have to pay someone, though, and we really should know how to do this.

        It was another of the many things Jim used to take care of…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Jan 12, 2019 @ 08:30:26

        Oh bless you Shan. I hop eyou get things sortet out. I am sure you will ❤

        Liked by 1 person

      • shanjeniah
        Jan 14, 2019 @ 22:53:24

        We did! Jeremiah watched a video, and it walked us through it. It really wasn’t as complicated as we expected it to be. I could do it on my own if need be, so that’s a worry off my mind.

        And now we have both plenty of kerosene and the wood stove to supplement, so it’s nice and cozy in here.

        Thank you for your concern, Ritu!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Jan 15, 2019 @ 06:51:57

        Oh I am so glad things got sorted out for you !

        Liked by 1 person

      • shanjeniah
        Feb 10, 2019 @ 05:48:18

        Thank you, Ritu!

        We’re now having issues with a plumber who botched a job badly and isn’t fixing it, but we’ll get that worked out, too.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ritu
        Feb 10, 2019 @ 09:09:17

        Oh no! If it ain’t one thing, it’s another 😲

        Like

  9. roughwighting
    Jan 10, 2019 @ 16:35:23

    Enjoyed our chat and chai. Your holiday and new year sound delightful, including the editing and the hand lettering (with great messages – self care is NOT selfish, just makes sense!). Sorry about your parents – hope they are warm and full of light now.

    Liked by 1 person

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  11. manishmehndiratta
    Jan 10, 2019 @ 08:18:31

    What a way to put it, Ritu! Kuddos…

    Liked by 2 people

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  13. Lisa Orchard
    Jan 09, 2019 @ 14:45:15

    Way to go, Ritu! You are an inspiration!

    Liked by 2 people

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  14. Jennie
    Jan 09, 2019 @ 01:33:30

    I. AM. SO. PROUD. OF. YOU! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

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  15. Rhonda
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 23:15:18

    I love your positive energy, Ritu!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

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  23. willowdot21
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 15:45:44

    Hey Ritu that’s a great prompt you gave us plus it’s your 2019 word💜💜💜

    Liked by 2 people

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  24. Trackback: JusJoJan 2019 Daily Prompt – Jan. 8th Self. | willowdot21
  25. Tikeetha T
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 14:47:52

    Happy New Year Ritu! I joined your Facebook group. You have a lot going on.

    Liked by 2 people

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  26. Trackback: #JusJoJan 8th – Note to self – cathdean.com
  27. Bryan Fagan
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 13:50:29

    You’re writing and contacting editors. Excellent!!!!!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  28. Shelley
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 13:09:46

    Oh, my, goodness, that is such a lovely and full cup of Chai you shared with us! It brightened my day to hear your thoughts. Cheers to the New Year! Thank you for the ‘self’ prompt for JusJoJan. I look forward to your next Chai chat to hear more.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  29. alexandraspeck
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 12:38:15

    I can totally relate to your blog. Thank you for sharing! And I love your positivity.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  30. kritsayvonne
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 07:31:56

    What a lovely post. I read every word while sipping a mug of tea in Crete – where it is snowing! Your mum and dad are very stoic, and don’t realise you worry. Good luck with your book. I understand the excitement and dilemmas. You’ve a wide potential audience and publishers may well be interested as it is not a run of the mill topic/setting. It is daunting going the indi route – but rewarding. Message me if I can be of any help. Happy New Year. x

    Liked by 2 people

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    • Ritu
      Jan 08, 2019 @ 08:28:55

      Thank you so much Yvonne!
      I’ll be sure to reach out if I need help!
      I’m jealous of your snow though!
      Mum and dad are back in a warm house… But still issues with hot water!!! Xx

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  31. Trackback: #JusJoJan 2019 Daily Prompt – Jan. 8th |
  32. Rebecca Moon Ruark
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 03:58:24

    What fun, minus the worries about your parents. I totally understand. My dad is 8 hours away by car, and he makes the drive a couple times a year now, as do I. But he’s 79–and won’t be able to do that forever. Ugh. Really hard. Our New Year’s was good. Had a blast with neighbor friends on the eve and then Chinese hotpot and dumplings with other friends on the Day. So, yes, a ton of eating and imbibing and now I feel like I could fast for a month! Truth be told, it was nice to get back to the regular routine so I have a few hours to myself each day, even if that also means my work ramped up again. But I’m serious about getting my creative work in each day–the work for pay will happen, even if it happens second. We’re worth it, right? Love your beautiful art, too!

    Liked by 3 people

    Reply

    • Ritu
      Jan 08, 2019 @ 07:00:15

      Thank you !

      I think the parents issues are more or less sorted, hot water is still dodgy, but when they are far, it is so hard!

      And you know we are all there to Kick each other to creative action now with the group!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

  33. Kurian
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 02:08:08

    I wish we were sipping chai together 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  34. Kurian
    Jan 08, 2019 @ 02:07:40

    Wonderful post. Thank you Ritu

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  35. Erika Kind
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 21:14:57

    Haha, I know that feeling when you get an idea and feel this excitement to start right away… whether alone or with help, but only start… lol!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  36. willowdot21
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 20:58:30

    Oh Sis I am so pleased with all your ups. You are doing so well. I want to follow in your footsteps but I just don’t know where or how to start my journey to self publish a book of poetry. 💜💜🙃🙃

    Liked by 2 people

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  37. Michael Ogazie
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 18:16:55

    Good one dear!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  38. robbiesinspiration
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 16:37:56

    I thought the UK schools only went back today, Ritu. It seems like you were back last week already. Elderly people can be a challenge. Mine do the same sort of thing – suffer in silence is the ethos. Sigh!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  39. OIKOS™-Publishing
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 16:36:36

    Hey Sis! Seems you were very busy, during the last days! We had no dust, but no sun too. 😉 Well done work with your WIP! I love you new hobby hand lettering. Hope we will see some of the results? Best wishes, Michael

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  40. rachaelstray
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 16:12:43

    I really hope you do get to have those cuddles this year Ritu! It’s quite nice to be back in a routine actually and know what day it is!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  41. Jacqui Murray
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 15:58:51

    Welcome back! I too took a short break and couldn’t believe how much more time I had for daily activities. I actually got bored without my lovely blogging friends. Sigh.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  42. syl65
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 15:58:08

    A quiet start to the new year here. Had to get back into full workday mode. Praying your book gets published this year Sister 💜

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  43. susielindau
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 15:31:20

    If we were sipping chai together, I’d say you’ve got a great plan. GO FOR IT!!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  44. Image Earth Travel
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 13:11:36

    It is so worrying when parents get older. I was never really close to mine and they’re no longer alive, but when they were, I still worried.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  45. Dan Antion
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 13:06:54

    It sounds like things are going well, except for the no-heat things for your folks, that stinks. I hope they get that sorted quick. As far as I can tell, chocolate and cookies are always to blame, but I think we shouldn’t be too hard on them.

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  46. Anne Goodwin (Annecdotist)
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 12:41:16

    Great you’re making progress on editing your novel, Ritu, but what’s this with you making chai with a tea bag? Surely you know the correct way is to boil up the milk, sugar and spices in a pan? But if it gives you a couple more minutes for your writing, then I suppose it’s okay! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  47. TanGental
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 10:19:05

    Yep, parents are a pain, for sure. They don’t want to worry you… grrr. I had to tell Mum to just stop and think for a moment what they were doing and who they were doing it for. Was it more or less selfish to keep me out of a worry loop? It made them feel good that they hadnt disturbed me so this noble silence wasn’t actually noble but selfish. Put like that they understood – mum, dad never could – that an early call, accepting offers of help were actually less not more selfish. And that’s what lead me to write the memoir that I wrote about how my mother used me unmercifully because I wanted to help… yep, you can’t win!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  48. CarolCooks2
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 08:08:37

    Very nice..Ritu…But no time to chat…Time to write or I will get my butt kicked….lol…I couldn’t resisist..x

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  49. Dorinda Duclos
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 05:40:12

    Good for you for sticking to your goals! Cheers, Ritu! ❤️ Oh, I asked to join the group. I definitely need a swift kick!!

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

  50. niasunset
    Jan 07, 2019 @ 05:36:48

    I loved your nrew hobby, “hand lettering”… seems so beautiful, and should be so enjoyable too. Thank you dear Ritu, have a great day, Love, nia

    Liked by 2 people

    Reply

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