Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Weekend Away...

By Robin "Red Hot" Kaye

My youngest daughter, Mini-me and I took a mini vacation to Colonial Williamsburg this weekend—just the two of us. It isn’t often we get away together. It seems as if for the last five years I’ve been on deadline as I am now. So why, you may ask, am I romping around Colonial Williamsburg when my book is due in 16 days? My only answer is: Because, maternal guilt is a very powerful motivator.

As usual, this is all my husband’s fault. He took our other two kids out backpacking for five days over Fourth of July weekend leaving Mini-me and me at home with the dogs. Not that there is anything wrong with the dogs. They’re cute, cuddly, and you know, loyal. But it’s not as if Mini-me and I got to do anything fun.

Now, between you, me, and the doorknob, Mini-me and I don’t think backpacking is much fun—after all it involves bugs, a hell of a lot of walking, poison ivy, going to the bathroom in the woods, and eating freeze-dried food, but that’s not the point. The point is that they got to do something they thought was fun and we didn’t.

When my husband and the kids came home, I told them that Mini-me and I were going away just the two of us to do something fun which would not involve woods (we’re allergic), too much walking, bad food (we’re food snobs), bugs (that darn allergy thing again) and questionable toilet facilities (just because we know how to shit in the woods, doesn’t mean we want to). I had no idea what we were going to do, but I had a strong feeling it would involve someplace with 24-hour room service.

Luckily I found a great deal through Travel Zoo, signed up, and even paid for it. Two nights in Colonial Williamsburg was ours any Sunday through Thursday, the only catch was that it had to be used by September 27th. No problem. After all we had the whole summer. September was months away.

Isn’t it amazing how time flies while you’re not having fun? Well, we had some fun. After all, if you’ve followed the blog you’ve read allabout my trip to Idaho.

Right after I killed myself to make my deadline for Back To You: Bad Boys of Red Hook, my editor asked if I could write a novella, Hometown Girl, to introduce the new series. I said, sure, no problem. I whipped that puppy out, had a fabulous time writing it, sent it in (a few days early in fact—a first for me) and went back to my contracts to see when my next book was due...Imagine my surprise when I realized it You're The One: Bad Boys of Red Hook was due October 1!

Now mind you, this was mid-August and I hadn’t even written the synopsis for You're The One. Any sane person would have gone into apoplectic shock. It’s a good thing I’m not sane. I just thought I’d hunker down and write like the wind. No problem.

Then my husband went missing. (See above—it’s all my husband’s fault) Okay, so he wasn’t missing in a literal sense. If you read my last blog here at Killer Fiction you’d know that for the last few months he’s been working 16 – 20 hour days, seven days a week. Now that I think about it, the last weekend he had off was when he and the kids went hiking.

So instead of hunkering down and writing like the wind, I spent the majority of time not only in deadline hell, but in deadline hell without my domestic god to do laundry, cleaning, and at least the partial feeding of kids and dogs. Yeah, I was on my own, rediscovering how much I dislike housework, laundry, and taking care of teenagers on my own. Every time something came up, my work got put down and when school started and things got really crazy. It was then it occurred to me that I still had a promise to keep. I had to take Mini-me to Williamsburg and I had to do it on a holiday—Mini-me couldn’t afford to miss more than one day of school.

Thank God for Rosh Hashannah! So here I am, running all over Williamsburg with Mini-me and having a great time.

See... I got to put Mini-me in the stocks to show her what happened in the olden days when teenagers didn’t listen to their mothers.

We enjoyed looking at the dresses women wore, but Mini-me decided that if she had lived back in the colonial days, it would have been “way better to be a dude.”

We ate at the King’s Arms Tavern—twice. Yeah, it was really that good...

We shopped...

And did our share of flirting with the men in uniform.

There is really something to be said for men in tight breeches. 

I can't wait until we see what trouble we can get into tomorrow morning before we leave. I have a feeling it's going to involve a candy store and the world's longest Gummy Worm...

So? What have you done in the name of maternal guilt, or if that’s not a problem for you, what was the last time you went out and did something fun, even if it wasn’t at all convenient?


Terri Osburn said...

I live 45 minutes south of Williamsburg and Kiddo and I make a point to go up a couple times a year. We share a love of anything historical. Fun place, isn't it? Did you take the carriage ride yet? If not, you must do that!

Stephanie Julian said...

I took my son to see Insane Clown Posse. Twice. I deserve a freaking medal for that. At least you got to go somewhere they don't drop the F-bomb every other word and spray Faygo soda all over you for an hour. And then have to drive an hour with three sweaty, smelly sticky teenage boys.

Unknown said...

I love Williamsburg! But where my family is into Busch Gardens I love the historical area. We haven't been there in a few years but used to vacation every summer for awhile.

Hubby and I attended Illumination Weekend one year (want to do that again) but we love-love-love Kings Arm Tavern and the peanut soup with sippets.

My mother guilt is the fact that I try to take my girls (17 & 20) out for a really nice High Tea at least twice a year, once after school lets out for the summer and around Christmas. Doesn't always work due to various reasons.

I did manage to do High Tea this summer and my 15 yo niece joined us. It was a great time.

I think it's a matter of quality time (sometimes) not quantity. It makes those times special. I found out it doesn't always have to be expensive--my girls remember the days we'd picnic on the floor during thunderstorms or have game nights and popcorn on a whim.

You do what you can--especially with teenagers schedules and busy lives.

Hugs to you and enjoy your time!
P.S. I too love a man in tight breeches! :)

Kristina McMorris said...

Oh, how I adore you, Robin! The camping thing...yeah, that's one of the best things about having only boys. They all go camping without me and excitedly refer to it as "Boys' Weekend." Double bonus.

My hat is off to you for squeezing all of that in--especially with your insane deadline approaching. I decided last year that I wasn't going to miss anything important to the kids due to my deadlines. It's been tough at times, but they're growing up so dang fast, I don't want to miss out on what's truly important--and I know you feel the same.

Love you, m'dear! Hope you're having a blast with Mini-me.

Gail Hart said...

Hmm... sounds like we'd all better leave you alone for the next two weeks! Here's hoping that time playing with MM was just what you needed to refill your creative well.

Mo said...

Congrats on making your adventure happen. It sounds like the two of you are having a blast. No matter how busy we all get it is ever so important to squeeze some me (or me and mini-me) time into our lives. I can't remember back far enough share any mother guilt trips, my son has been out of the house for 20 years. But thanks to too much business travel hubby and I have free airline miles that we use to take boondoggle trips to see someplace new to us in the US. So far we've gone to San Francisco, St. Louis and the Pacific Northwest. Next week we are heading to Denver and the Badlands.

I'm looking forward to your new books . . . Love your work!

Robin Kaye said...

@ Terri~

I wish I'd known you were so close by, I'd have loved to get together. Maybe next time. Mini-me and I had a blast. We've just got home so we'll have to take a carriage ride next time. It looked like so much fun! We're already planning our next trip!

@ Steph - You got me beat, girlfriend! Yeah, my kid would have been SOL. There's nothing worse than boy stink. Ick!

@ Kristina~ Kris! How are you, sweetie! I miss you too. Let's talk after I turn in my book. Gives me something to look forward to! Love you!

@ Gail~ Thanks, I really did have a wonderful time and I hope I refilled the well. We'll see.

@ Mo~ Have a great trip. Hopefully the fires around Denver are out. Enjoy the time with your DH. Lord knows, I don't get to see enough of mine.

@ Loni Lynne~ High tea sounds great, though Mini-me wouldn't like it, Twinkle Toes would be in heaven! I took her to high tea at the Plaza Hotel and to a broadway show on her 9th birthday. We had a great time.

Anonymous said...

Wow, sounds like a great trip. Good luck getting everything done in the next two weeks. I know you can do it!

Lynn Cahoon said...

Okay - love your story about the Idaho trip. Best laid plans and all. (Go Broncos!)

And Williamsburg sounds amazing. I went there as a teenager, and there were lots of flirtable guys in tight breeches... Almost makes me want to write historical.