Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Anna Jones Buttimore -- Guest Blog

Stephanie is on vacation for the next two weeks, but she has asked two incredible authors (and good friends) to fill in for her. The first is Anna Jones Buttimore, author of Haven, A World Away and the soon-to-be-released LDS Regency, Easterfield. Anna lives in England with her husband and three daughters. She works full-time, serves as YW president in her ward, and writes whenever and wherever she can.

Bicycles Built for . . . Four?
Making the Best of It

by Anna Jones Buttimore

I’m feeling somewhat virtuous this week. Positively holier-than-thou, actually. The reason is that my husband is working in Baku for a week. (The geeks among you will recognise Baku as the Star Trek planet where the people never fall ill or get old. Unfortunately the Baku he has gone to is actually the capital of Azerbaijan.) His flight left and returned at such an unearthly hour that I refused to drive him to Heathrow – with the children in the back seat, of course. You try getting a babysitter at 4 a.m. on a Sunday - and with no convenient shuttles, flyers, buses or trains. The only solution was for him to take the family car and park it at the airport while he was away. So we are carless. Or car-free, as I prefer to say.

I’ve dusted off my bicycle, put the babyseat on the back, and we are cycling everywhere together like a Center Parcs commercial, the wind blowing our hair out behind us and the children laughing as they try to run over squirrels and reflect on their negative carbon footprints. This afternoon we will be cycling to the swimming pool, if I can figure out how to carry four sets of swimsuits and towels in my bicycle basket. On the face of it, a week without a car is a major inconvenience, even a problem. But I’m a born optimist who sees hurdles as challenges to be overcome.

Everyone handles adversity differently, and many people find their challenges so overwhelming that they have entirely lost the ability to see any way out, or any positives in their situation. For them, a week without a car is not an opportunity to get healthy and have a ready-made excuse not to do certain things, but a disaster. If they even had a bike it would be discovered to have two flat tyres and faulty brakes, and it would rain every time they wanted to ride it somewhere. This is not merely the difference between an optimist and a pessimist; many people have become so stressed or worn down by their situation that they no longer have the ability to “make the best of it”.

One person’s minor inconvenience can, for another, be the straw that breaks the camel’s back. I’m welcoming my current challenge, but the support of family, friends and a kind bishop or sympathetic Relief Society president can be vital for those times when we encounter one challenge too many.

You can order Anna's upcoming book, Easterfield, HERE. (Ignore the fact that they spelled her name wrong and have yet to post the cover. Just order it. You'll be glad you did. I promise.) Visit her website HERE.


At 8/06/2008 12:23 PM, Blogger C. L. Hanson said...

The car-free life is great!!! I've been living without a car for 7+ years and loving the freedom of it (see here). But as a veteran of the alternate-transportation lifestyle, I have to ask: why didn't your husband take a taxi to the airport? They're good at the whole "4 a.m. on a Sunday" thing. ;^)

At 8/06/2008 1:59 PM, Blogger Cheri J. Crane said...

Anna, I loved your blog!!! =)A much needed boost. There's a little poem that goes something like this:

"The difference between the optimist and the pessimist is quite droll---
The optimist sees the doughnut, the pessimist the hole." ;)

You, my friend, always seen the doughnut. =)

At 8/06/2008 2:05 PM, Blogger Cheri J. Crane said...

That should read "see," not seen. Sorry about that. It has been that kind of a day. ;)

At 8/06/2008 2:31 PM, Blogger Tristi Pinkston said...

I loved Anna's first books and I'm excited that there will soon be another one!

At 8/06/2008 3:54 PM, Blogger Amy said...

haven't heard from you in ages!! When does Easterfield come out?
Email me if/when you get the chance.

At 8/06/2008 6:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's Easterfield about, and why isn't it featured on your website with a description and the first chapter for us to read? Just curious!

At 8/07/2008 12:44 AM, Blogger David G. Woolley said...


I can hear your English accent in your writing. Really. It just oozes from phrases like:

"Positively holier-than-thou, actually."

I feel like I'm back in East Grinstead having crumpets cocoa with Margaret Thatcher. We used to lunch at number ten Downey Street, but that's old school now.

Have you ever been to the national training center at Near Newport? Just wondering. I spent some serious time there a few years back. Lovely place.

Thanks for the post. Terrific insights. Now when is your next book coming out? I will be first in line for sure.

David G. Woolley

Join author David G. Woolley at his Promised Land Website. He is also a weekly contributor to the Latter Day Authors blog and he writes commentary and opinion at the Utah Ranger's Far Post blog

At 9/01/2008 2:24 PM, Blogger Anne Bradshaw said...

Great to read your post, Anna. You made me quite homesick. I have a question for you, actually, so am hopping over to your website to hunt down contact info. All good wishes for your new book.

At 10/04/2008 1:56 AM, Anonymous Andrea Lemley said...

Anna, great to hear from you. This is an old email friend of yours from the U.S.. We lost track of each other a couple of years ago. Glad that everything is going well for you.


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