What You (Don’t) Need for Christmas and #ROW80

I’ve been out in the stores lately shopping for a few more Christmas gifts. As I’ve taken a look around, I’ve seen many awesome gift ideas. However, there are also many items on sales racks and displays that make you wonder who exactly thinks they must purchase such a thing for a loved one or friend.

Cooking with Beer cookbook

So that’s what my cooking has been missing! I have actually enjoyed beer-battered shrimp a few times, but I’m sure there are many other uses. If you give this gift, you might want to include a six-pack with it. (from Barnes & Noble)

Dog Santa Costume

Perhaps it’s that I own cats instead of dogs (and no self-respecting cat would ever allow himself to be used as a dress-up doll), but is this really what your pup needs? Albeit if they can pull off this look with a pair of black leather boots, I will be impressed. (from PetSmart)

Deer Wine Bottle Holder

Now wine is usually an upscale drink, so the idea of this orange-vested deer holding the next bottle to be served to guests is, well, odd. Bass Pro Shops must have instinctively known this; thus, the substitution of a margarita bottle instead. (from Bass Pro Shops)

Yard-O-Beef (Beef Summer Sausage)

Because who doesn’t need an entire yard of beef? Move over, Hickory Farms, we don’t need your cute-sized cheeses and meats anymore. We can get a whole 3 feet of beef! (from Sam’s Club)

Elf boxers

Not to be outdone by your pet (see above), you might need your own pair of Christmas-themed boxers. Forget the fat man, though; you always dreamed of being an elf, right? By the way, they are velvety for that cozy winter feel. (from Walmart)

Moving on from presents to progress, here’s my regularly writing goals update:

ROW80 Update

Editing: SHARING HUNTER, young adult contemporary novel.

  • Complete full rewrite. One-fourth of the way through. On hold for a little while, as I work out some plot kinks.



  • Write two short stories. Sent a short story to three beta readers and got feedback. Edited and polished it up for submission. Sent it in to the anthology judges. Then wrote 1,167 words on a second short story.
  • Write 3,000 words per week on young adult novel. Not sure of the working title, but it’s murder mystery with a preacher’s daughter as the protagonist. Worked on the short stories instead, and I’m okay with that.


  • Nothing special here. Just read. A lot. Finished Wicked Sense, a YA paranormal by Fabio Bueno. Highly recommend it!

Non-writing goals

  • Exercise twice a week. Took a long walk with the hubby on Saturday (to and from the library). 
  • Sort through photos and complete at least one album. (I stopped scrapbooking five years ago, and it’s piled up into a big mess. Moving into digital albums.) Woo-hoo! I got quite a bit done here. I completed several scrapbook pages, plus I finally ordered a photo album online that is realistic in terms of my current habits.

I can’t believe we’re so close to (1) the end of ROW80; (2) the end of the year; and (3) the end of the world. I’m unprepared for them all! Hey, I just put my Christmas tree up yesterday.

So how was your week’s progress? And what present ideas have you seen while shopping that made you smile or laugh out loud?