It’s been nine months since we’ve traveled out West. Last May we went out to Phoenix, San Diego, and the Sacramento area. We were able to visit lots of friends and family. We’ve been feeling the itch to travel some again and see our very good friends in Phoenix and my married daughter in Sacramento.
So we’re heading out West in March. And we’re making it a business trip to meet with other authors, a couple of clients, and possibly do a couple of presentations for writers.
We’ll be visiting Alex Zabala and his wife in Phoenix. Alex is author of Treasure of the Mayan King and The Golden Scepter. Last May when we were there he was celebrating 5 hundred copies sold of Treasure of the Mayan King. Last month, January 2014, he celebrated 5 thousand copies sold!
Then we’ll visit with our very good friends, Terry & Virgie. Terry is a musician and Joel always loves playing with him and his band.
While in Phoenix, at some point, we’ll also have an opportunity to meet Larry Brooks, author of Story Engineering, a book Joel recommends to authors. Yet another contact in Albuquerque may be able to set up something for Joel to present to a book club.
On our way to see Rachelle in the Sacramento area, we’ll have a night in Santa Barbara, California to meet up with another author, Lynelle Paulick.
And if we can convince Tom Bentley – editor extraordinaire – not to do an overseas house sitting gig, maybe we’ll stop by and see him while we’re in California.
It should be a lot of fun! Join us on another adventure!
What clothing should we pack for our month-long trip? We’ll be leaving Wisconsin with snow on the ground it seems since we just had 17 inches on Thursday! We’ll be arrive on Wednesday in Phoenix, Arizona where the high that day should be 85 and by Saturday it will be 100. And the temperatures will be much warmer in California than we’ve seen in Wisconsin for a while.
So we’ll probably start off driving away with our long-sleeved shirts on, a jacket, and maybe even boots. We’ll be coming back wearing shorts, tank tops, and sandals. Swimsuits! We’ll have those along for all the swimming we’ll be doing.
We plan to do lots of swimming in pools during our month-long trip coming up. Pools in Phoenix when we stay with friends. A pool at a hotel in San Diego. Pam & Phil’s pool in Roseville in Northern California. We’re leaving snow to go to these places that are at or nearly at 100 degrees! We’ll need lots of pool time.
A couple of Sundays ago friends here in Rice Lake, Wisconsin had a pool party. Though there was snow on the ground and it was raining that day, Fiona enjoyed three hours at an indoor, heated pool. She had a blast! Guess she was ‘training’ for the pools in Phoenix and California. :) We’re all looking forward to more swimming.
The last time we saw Rachelle in person was one year ago in August when we visited for a few days. Though Rachelle and Fiona have stayed in touch by phone and e-cards, they are so looking forward to seeing each other in person next month when Rachelle comes to Wisconsin for a visit.
Fiona and I have been talking about what they’ll do.
1. Spend nearly a whole day at the Rice Lake Public Library! Besides books to read and fun computer games to play, they have puzzles, dress up stuff, and a play market.
2. Go to Culver’s for frozen custard. They use Wisconsin dairy. Wonder what the flavor of the day will be when they go…
3. Spend some time at the lake and the park near the lake.
And just have a lot of fun!
The journey of life begins anew today for our family. Our son, James Ashman, is joining us from California. He’s driving clear across the country all by himself. So of course I’m a bit concerned. But he’s a lot like me and I know he’ll take care and plan well and arrive safe. He’s looking forward to helping us in our businesses and getting back to writing his fiction. He also hopes to have a significantly enhanced amount of joy. Now that’s a tall order. Hope we can live up to it! :)
It’s also the end of a journey – a journey that took 6 months. That’s right. It took 6 months for Joel to publish 6 books. That’s not the end of writing and publishing books though. The next one is in the works and we’re working with an author currently to get his new book edited, formatted and published.
We’re celebrating tonight in Philadelphia with friends and two co-authors, Shanna Mann and Rick Wilson. If you’re in the area, come join us!
Wonder where the journey will take us in the new year?
A year ago today we left Roseville California to head to Montreal. It’s been quite a year. We’ve driven through a lot of states and stayed with lots of interesting people.
What have we learned? For one thing, I don’t want to live in a big city ever again. I don’t want to move back to California. I am drawn to small towns and a slower pace of life. We can do just about anything, anywhere!
Are we ready to settle? I think some sort of travel will always be in our plans. Maybe house sit for a month here, 3 weeks there, several months in another place. But for a year or so I think we may just settle in a little town somewhere. Not sure where yet or exactly when.
We’ve been talking a lot about what comes next. We have a few months in New Jersey where we’re going to be staying. The book release party is coming up in November in Philadelphia. There are places and people we want to see while we’re out on the East coast for the winter. Then….
We’ll let you know!
We’re only in Roseville for a few days and there are so many people in the Sacramento area here that we know. We’d love to meet with everyone individually and that’s just not possible. However, for those of you that would like to see us while we’re back in town, we’ve arranged to spend Wednesday afternoon, August 10, 2011, at Panera Bread. Anyone who’d like to come visit with us for a bit, please stop by and do so. Here are the details.
Where: Panera Bread, 916 Pleasant Grove Blvd., Roseville, California
When: Wednesday, August 10, 2011 from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Facebook Page: Read more about the event here.
We hope to see you there!
The sisters have been reunited! Fiona and Rachelle are together once again after being separated five months. Fiona hasn’t seen her big sister since Rachelle’s wedding in March. She’s very happy to have a few days to spend with her! You can see Fiona’s video about it here.
I’m very happy too that I get to see my two older children as well. We all had a nice dinner and visit on Saturday when we got to Rachelle and her husband’s home. You can see more photos of Rachelle, Fiona and Ryan on our Flickr account.
So Fiona gets to stay with her big sister through Wednesday. Then we’re off to San Diego on Friday where she’ll get to visit with her Uncle Brett and see her Grandma Susan.
The trip from Colorado to get out to California was a lot of fun. We stayed one night with a wonderful Couch Surfing family in Utah and another night with a Couch Surfing couple in Nevada. The trip through Utah was uneventful until we reached the Salt Flats. That was fun! Fiona had a blast running around out there.
We had a leisurely drive from Reno to Sacramento and along the way Fiona got to wade in Lake Tahoe. She bravely climbed rocks to get to where daddy was.
We’ve enjoyed house sitting again for Rita in Colorado. They are coming back one day early so we’re leaving a day early. That’s okay. Nomads must be flexible! We’re so flexible that a week or so ago we changed our plans entirely and decided to head back to California for a short visit.
Fiona hasn’t seen her big sister Rachelle since she got married in March. And since we need to be in Wisconsin the first part of September for a short visit and to pick up school stuff for Fiona, then have a three-week house sitting gig in Minnesota and have just made arrangements to spend several months this winter in New Jersey, we thought we’d better go see some family in California before it’s a year since we saw any of them.
So tomorrow we leave Colorado, stay one night in the Salt Lake City, Utah area (we still need a place to stay there for one night by the way), another night in Reno Nevada with Couch Surfers, and we’ll be in Roseville California Saturday. Fiona gets to spend several days with Rachelle. After a few days there, we’ll head down to San Diego to visit with Joel’s brother and family.
Then there’s that Route 66 trip…
Our drive Sunday included seeing a rainbow and beautiful rolling green hills.
Fiona played with her ponies in the car.
And the rest area had all these birds – they sounded like something electronic.