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#Welcometomycrazyride#Feelingblessed

Hello! Welcome back to my returning friends, and thank you to new visitors. I appreciate everyone taking time from their busy schedules to spend a few minutes with me.


We're two and a half months into 2024, and I hope the new year has been kind to you so far. The end of 2023 was a whirlwind of activities at the Short House, so it's difficult to remember when one year ended and the next one began.



In November, the Urbana and Champaign Firefighter Locals 1147 and 1260 sponsored their Annual Fireman's Ball and Christmas Gift Drive. The firefighters wore their Class A dress uniforms while the women donned sparkly ball gowns. We enjoyed cocktails and good food, music and dancing, and the friendship of the many firefighter families.


We celebrated those who had retired and those new to the fire service. We honored those that we had lost. The evening reminded me how very lucky I am to be a part of this extended firefighter family.




December brought major renovations to our home. After packing forty boxes and stowing them in the garage, the crew came to tear out the old floors and install the new ones.


Like any project at our house, we ran into problems and delays (that's how our luck goes most of the time), which stretched a four-day job across two weeks. We lived in chaos with two anxiety-riddled pups during this entire project. Thank goodness for good calming drugs - for the dogs and me!


It was all worth it , and I can't thank Kent and his crew enough for all their hard work,


We weren't even done with the flooring project when the deck guy called and said he'd be there Monday. So, with hammering on the inside, a new crew began tearing out our twenty-seven-year-old wooden deck. It had served us well and withstood the sometimes harsh central Illinois weather, but it was time.


Trent chose the low-maintenance Trex decking- no more scrubbing, staining, and sealing every fall for us. We now have a beautiful deck to enjoy for many years to come.


And in case you wondered, yes, it was difficult having both the inside and the outside torn up simultaneously. I took the dogs on a lot of walks. IN. THE. COLD.


In the new year, we made a big change and decided to move. This is the view from our new place. Just kidding.


But we did take a trip to St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, where the weather was warm, the water a shade of blue I'd never seen, and the drinks were fruity and dangerous.


This is where I have full disclosure, and many of you may be shocked by this piece of information: This was my first time seeing the ocean and my first time on a plane. Ok, you can pick yourself up off the floor. I'm sure you're asking how a woman of my age (50-something) has never flown before. No, I was not afraid. Flying is great. Growing up, my family couldn't afford fancy vacations. We went camping...a lot. After getting married, Trent and I didn't have the money to take extravagant trips, so we drove anywhere we went. We feel very fortunate to have taken this trip. Even better, Trent won it! One of the distributors he sells fire equipment for gave us this vacation for all his hard work. Thank you, Fire Dex. We had a great time!


Now, for my biggest news. Thanks to an email I received while on vacation and my publisher's belief in my ability to work quickly, my book's release has been moved from June 2024 to April—yes, of 2024!


This wonderful news brought a range of emotions from excited to nervous to overjoyed to scared out of my mind. I'm now feeling blessed. I guess I've worked my way through the five phases of pre-publishing. LOL


So, if you're interested in reading "Murdered by the Books," keep an eye on my Facebook page and Instagram account as well as these blogs. I'll share more information about the release date and book launch events as soon as I have the details.


I cannot express (and I'm a writer who is supposed to be good with words) how deeply blessed and fortunate I feel at this opportunity. I want to thank Elk Lake Publishing (Deb and Cristel) for taking a chance on a debut author, my editor, Peggy, for all her help in polishing the story, and Kelly for the fabulous job she did on the cover art.


And I especially feel blessed by all of you who have supported me along this journey. I can't wait to hear what you think of the book.


Until next time,


Jodi


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7 Comments


You both look great in that picture!

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Woohoo! My BFF is about to be published. I couldn’t be happier or more excited for you. I will cherish my signed edition.

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jodishort
jodishort
Mar 15
Replying to

Thank you, my sweet friend. I can always count on your support and enthusiasm!

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I can’t wait to purchase your book, read it and get it signed! I’m sure this is the first in a long line of stories from you.

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jodishort
jodishort
Mar 15
Replying to

Thank you so much, Sharom! I truly appreciate your kind words and support.

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It was so nice to see what you've been doing! Love the floor color BTW and so excited about your book!🤗❤️

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jodishort
jodishort
Mar 15
Replying to

Hi Vilia,

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. It's so good hearing from you, I hope everything is going well for you and your family. We love the new floors, too. I appreciate all your support and kind words.

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