Sunday, September 24, 2006


Tomorrow is the big day. We are heading down to LAX on a non-stop to Kona. I'm pretty excited although I'm not much of a flier. I've been busy the last few days with packing and the multitude of details which arise when leaving for a week. Luckily, I have family who are coming over to keep an eye on the house.

Packing has been a joy. I got the kids packed quickly. Hubby and I took longer because things I would ordinarily carry onboard now must go in suitcases. Anyway, we're packed except for the playstation. Yes, I'm taking the playstation. Not only will it occupy the brats but it can double as a DVD player. Yes, I packed DVD's as well. DH and I are in the midst of a James Bond film fest in preparation for Casino Royale in November. When you go on vacation with kids, you can forget a wild nightlife. That's okay, we are going for relaxation anyway.

Packed a bunch of books, its going to be a very paranormal week. I still want to get one more book to round it out. Also took two months worth of Entertainment Weekly's I need to catch up on.

One thing I will not be doing is connecting to the Internet. I don't know if I can do it, the Force is strong. I'm really going to miss the blogosphere, but I think I need the break. I'm sure I will come back rejuvenated with a long series of brilliant and scintillating posts. I find it astounding how much the Internet has become a part of my life and to go a week without it.....I hope I don't end up a drooling maniac.

Anyway, I'm going to go through my blogroll today for the last time for seven long, long days. Hope everyone has a great week and I'll think of you while I roast on the beach in Hawaii.

And, to keep you busy.....

There is a BIAW going on over at Villa in Tuscany so sign up and send your writing into overdrive

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


So in less than a week I’m off to Hawaii.  I’m not ready.  I’m so darn scattered right now, hence my lack of presence in the blogosphere.  Trying to string two thoughts together has been impossible.  

Got my iPod loaded.  Diva doesn’t know it but I think her daddy is going to buy her a new Gameboy DS before we go, in pink of course.  Supernerd already has one he bought after Christmas and Thing can use one of the older Gameboy SP’s.  Yes, my kids are so spoiled.  But I will do anything if I can keep then entertained.  Also, I find handheld devices to be great leverage.  “Clean your room or you will never see your Gameboy again.”  “Hit your sister one more time and you can kiss your Gameboy goodbye.”  You get the idea.

My inlaws who booked my trip have said that the airline is not assigning seats yet.  Or at least the current seating assignments have us all scattered all over the plane.  Hmmm….Do I change it?  I do think this could be a moneymaking scheme on my part.  When Thing gets seated next to the honeymooning couple and they offer to switch the seats around, I’m going to refuse.  When they beg me, I’ll say it’s going to cost them.  Same with Diva.  Although she comes off so cute at first, people won’t mind sitting next to her.  I figure around mid-flight, I can start my extortion plans.  Supernerd is easy, he’ll be so involved in his game and won’t talk to anyone…Unless they make the mistake of asking him about it.  Believe me, its torture when he starts talking about his video games.  Score one more for extortion.  

For you members of the Thing Fan Club, you’ll find this amusing.  My mom was talking to a kindergarten teacher yesterday down at my kids’ school who says she wants to get Thing in her class next year. My mom thinks she’s nuts.   Diva’s teacher has already said she is going to fight to have Thing in her class.  I think they must be serving something funky in the teacher’s lounge.  Or maybe these women are masochists.  

Sunday, September 17, 2006

And the Winner Is...

I know, I was supposed to do this yesterday but I wasn’t home.  Diva had soccer and a campout and Supernerd had a birthday party.  But that wasn’t what kept me from the computer….

My mother is learning email (insert loud, terrified screaming here).

I’m not a teacher, at least not for computer stuff.  My mother is completely computer illiterate.  She’s educated, but she comes from a time where computers weren’t the norm.  I, on the other hand, have been using computers for far longer than I’d care to recall.  I learned BASIC on a Radio Shack TRS-80 when I was in high school.  And I’ve been on them ever since.  

My folks have a cable modem and my mom bought herself a laptop last Thanksgiving.  It’s a nice little Vaio with a built in wireless card.  So all they needed was a router and I could get her set up.  I bought them a router and set it up on Friday and began an email lesson.

Oh boy.

Its really hard trying to pull myself down to the level she is at.  If you’ve been working on computers for a long time, it feels like riding a bike.  You can sit at any computer and figure out the basic workings, go to an email program and figure out how to run it.  But my mom has none of this experience and technology is a frightening thing.  Technology changes constantly and I think it is very daunting for some.  I was lucky to be part of a generation which grew up with rapid change, I’m used to it.  But my mom…well, she’s very intimidated.  I sat down with her Friday and started showing her how to work email, trying hard not to skip steps and go too fast.

I thought we did pretty good.  Yesterday, I took Diva to Target to pick up some last minute campout supplies.  When I got home, the answering machine was blinking.  When I reached over to play the messages, my husband warned me not to.  Sigh….my mother.

I spent a big chunk of the afternoon trying to explain things, making a conscious effort not to use lingo or assume things like double clicking or how to exit out of a program.  The second call I got from her I could hear hysteria in her voice, the threat of tears.  So I started over.  The toughest part is making her understand the only way she can learn and improve is practice and experimentation.  No one is going to think she is an idiot if she messes up.  It is to be expected.  I got her back on track and she successfully did what she wanted.  I’m hoping that gives her encouragement.  But it did make me appreciate teachers, computers and the wonders of things like email which I take for granted.

Anyway….the winner is Teresa.  Email me your snail addy and I’ll have you smelling like paradise by next weekend.

OH  Big Congrats to Michelle Willingham on her first sale!  Woo Hooo!!!

Friday, September 15, 2006

Fall Cleaning

I don’t believe in spring cleaning.  I’m a fall cleaner, hence the lack of blogging.  I have this frantic need to put my house in order for the new season.  Why?  I’m not sure.  Autumn is my favorite time of year and I truly want to enjoy it.  Amazingly enough, the weather over the last couple of days has cooperated, adding to my fall mood.

However, this isn’t doing much for my writing.  I have done some, but not at the pace I need to keep.  I can kiss off next week, I have lofty packing goals and want to have everything in order before I leave on vacation.

I wasn’t going to take my writing with me, but I don’t know that I can resist.  Hubby is taking his laptop, so I might indulge in one of those mornings on the lanai, sipping my coffee, gazing off at the ocean while I write.  Melts me just thinking about it.  I also plan to spend a lot of time reading.  Oh, I love reading on vacation.  And darn, my TBR is starting to shrink.  Guess I better head to the bookstore before I go.

Unfortunately, my kids are going to, which means they will cut into my reading time.  I’m going to have to pay attention to them while they frolic on the beach.  But hopefully hubby and I can come to a tag team arrangement at the pool.  He likes to read on vacation as well.  

Do you like to read on vacation?  Probably a stupid question.  But I have been on vacations where I didn’t read at all.  I’ve quite often been too busy playing tourist.  Hence, one reason we go back to Hawaii all the time, we’ve done the tourist stuff, now we can relax.  When I was younger, vacation was time to explore, to visit new places.  Now, as I get older, its time to relax.  I think if we took a vacation every year, I’d be more likely to go on adventures, but since we haven’t gone in four years, I crave the slow pace of a holiday.  Are vacations a time for relaxation or adventure for you?

Oh yeah, two other matters of business.  I haven’t had any responses to the blog carnival, so I think I will cancel it.  To be honest, I’ve been pretty darn busy, so I’m not all that  broken up about it.  Maybe we’ll do one in October, maybe a special Halloween edition, wouldn’t that be fun?  

Also, tomorrow I will have a winner for my drawing and announce it.  And I can catch up on the blogroll.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Why I Drink, Part 2

As I was getting ready to go pick up my older kids on Friday, I discovered Thing in the kitchen with a bottle of chocolate syrup. A very, very bad combination. I learned long ago to keep the water in the tub all day long for just such emergencies.
This is what I found on Saturday. These are her tub toys. Why they are in the toilet, I don't know. Thank goodness she didn't try to flush. Sunday night she wanted a bath. When I told her no, she got out the margarine and covered herself with it so I would have to give her a bath. I didn't indulge her. She got wiped down with a wet paper towel and put on time out. I do have to applaud her sinister thought process. Now you know where my inspiration comes from for my villains. When she isn't causing trouble, she is the most affectionate, charming children I've ever met. I suspect it is a self-defense mechanism.

I don't understand why she does these things. Is it a "baby" behavior or something far more frightening? I've discovered my children are well on the way to being smarter than me. I sometimes wonder if my kid is one up on me. She can operate a computer and play a gameboy. Heck, at 3 years old, she can swing and hit a pitch. But then she does these ridiculous things. Is she trying to give me a heart attack?

The mouth is getting better. Some things still bother it like acid based drinks and vinegar. No, I don't drink vinegar but it is a prime ingredient in low fat salad dressing. I've got two weeks to get it better so I can suck down tropical drinks in Hawaii.

I'm back to writing. Oh yeah, I had this brilliant idea in the middle of the night the other night for a new WIP. I sat down the next day and wrote 5 pages just to keep it there. But I have to finish the WIP I'm on. I'm almost halfway and I just had a pivotal scene, so it should be smooth sailing for a chapter or two.

Don't forget...
Scroll down to Saturday's post for my little giveaway.

I've got the next blog carnival scheduled to be released next Monday. The topic is the perfect hero. If you have a post you want to submit, email me the link or submit through Blog Carnival.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Impulse & Giveaway

I’m an impulse shopper.  Not big ticket items, but the little things, particularly smelly stuff like candles and shower gels.  Books and magazines also get me as does those endless Celtic music cd’s available at holiday craft shows.  I’m a patsy for those kinds of things.  

Impulse also is a hallmark of my writing.  I don’t think out a story line, it just burst, an impulsive idea which gets typed out with little thought.  Sometimes it goes someplace, a lot of times it doesn’t.  But I have a burst of creative impulse that must be given life.  Quite often it comes in the form of a short story and rarely do I share them.  

These are the only two areas I give in to impulse.  For the most part, I keep to a steady path, giving thought and consideration to everything from the kind of car I want to the brand of peanut butter I’m going to buy.  

Which leads me to the giveaway.  Remember my trip to Vegas?  Well, I impulse shopped and bought a set of Hawaiian shower gels which I stuck in my drawer and promptly forgot.  I have no need for these things, I have enough shower gel to bathe the entire population of Brazil.  I had the satisfaction of buying them, so now I’m going to give them away to a good home where they will be appreciated.  I have a set from Forever Florals.  It has three different fragrances:  Coco Papaya, White Ginger & Pikake.  One lucky person can smell like the Islands.

How are you impulsive?  Is it shopping?  Behavior?  Writing? Temper?  I’ll draw a name from the comments on Friday.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Happy New Year

Thank you all for your concern, my mouth is much better.  I’m down to taking Advil only a couple of times a day.  It’s going to take awhile to heal completely but at least the pain isn’t going through my entire head now.  My focus is back.

So my new year has started.  I know the traditional beginning is January and has been since the 18th century for us English speakers, but for me it is September.  In fact, my year goes from September to June, July and August are formless blobs of time and don’t count.  September is the beginning of everything.

My family has something to do almost everyday of the week beyond school and work.  I’ve entered the “Mom’s Taxi” phase of motherhood and is it ever a pain.  I’m a hermit at heart and prefer to be at home, but duty calls.  Now I really have to be organized.

I picked up The Family Organizer at Wal-Mart and it has been pretty helpful.  I like the structure, it has the week’s menu on the same page as the week’s activities.  Makes meal planning so much easier.  I’ve also returned to grocery shopping with a list.  I can no longer meander down the aisles in a fog, I have to be focused.  Time is a valuable commodity and shopping with a list is so helpful.  Plus it saves money.  

Looking at my schedule and the things I have to do, I realize I have to start writing on a real schedule.  Not a nebulous goal-oriented schedule, but a solid time-in-the-chair schedule.  During the summer, having a 5 page goal was fine, but now, I don’t have the time control.  I need to fit the writing in at a certain time and make it a scheduled part of my day.  I have to do it with exercise as well.  Working out isn’t that tough for me to make time for.  The gym is on my way home from dropping the kids off at school, so the Thing and I can stop off for an hour on the way home.  But writing is a different story.  The creative genius fluctuates.  Sometimes I feel authorly at 10 a.m., other times, at 10 p.m.  But such frivolities aren’t going to work.  I firmly believe we can train ourselves to fit what has to be done, whether we like it or not.  It isn’t going to be easy, but it can be done.  And maybe that is the secret to being a successful author.  I think if I can make myself write at a scheduled time.  Writing is really my last frontier with regards to discipline.

What do you struggle with?  Doesn’t have to be writing, but is there something in your life you have had to force yourself to do?  Or find creative ways of fitting into your life?

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

I'm Number One....

I went to the dentist today and he told me the burn in my mouth was the worst one he'd ever seen. Unfortunately, there really isn't anything he can do at this point. If it hasn't gotten significantly better next week, I have to come back and he'll do something. Sigh...Also found out he bought his wife a Bentley. Damn, I should have married a dentist.

I back to popping Advil Gel Caps (these are the greatest, not only do they work fast, they don't bother my stomach) and feeling better. I think I was worried that he'd have to do something invasive and painful. My focus is a little better now.

First Day of School

How heavenly it was to drop off those little monsters. Diva took off after school on a playdate. Supernerd complained that all the sixth graders in his class (he's in a 4-5-6 class) have cell phones. Subtle hint...NOT. I was so happy to see my daughter's teacher, she's so wonderful. Tomorrow is her birthday so I ordered a cake. Actually, it is a cake made up of cupcakes. I heard this afternoon after I ordered the cake that one of the kids is celebrating his birthday as well. Plenty of cake for everyone.

I know I had a bunch of stuff to talk about, but my mind is drawing a blank. I really wish the dentist could have given me a magic pill to make this go away. I did want to mention the September edition of the blog carnival, "This Thing Called Love." The topic is what makes the perfect hero. You can either send me your link via email or submit it directly through Blog Carnival (the link is in my sidebar). The carnival will be posted on September 18, so I need your links by the 17th.

Hopefully I'll feel better tomorrow and I can talk about my little giveaway.

Quick Post

Sorry, I'm falling down on my blogging both as a reader and writer. My mouth has not improved and I'm going to the dentist this afternoon to see what is up. This was supposed to be a good day; my kids are back in school. But the pain in my mouth is going all through my head. The pain makes focusing difficult. Hopefully I can catch up to my blogroll tonight.

Glad you like the layout, tres Lilly Pulitzer, don't you think? It was a pre-made layout hence the only reason I could focus and do it. I like the colors.

I will post tomorrow. I think I'm going to have a giveaway to celebrate my kids return to school and my impending vacation. Until then, I'm going to lay on the couch and moan in pain. I can't take anymore Advil or I'm going to end up with my stomach in a mess. I can't take the Tylenol 3's because they make me a little woozy and since I have to drive today, not such a good idea.

Friday, September 01, 2006

One of those Weeks

Ever have one of those weeks where it just didn't pay to get out of bed? I'm having one of those right now.

I burned the top of my mouth the earlier this week pretty bad on some spaghetti sauce. The pain has radiated down through my jaw and it hurts to eat, move, think, whatever. Oral pain is the worst, I'd rather go through labor again.

My laptop re-booted itself which it does on occasion for whatever updates its downloaded. My WIP was closed down without my participation. Not really a big deal because Word saves it as is when the program shuts down only it saves it as a backup file. When I opened Word the next day, it gave me the opportunity to open the last save. I deleted it instead and lost about 3 pages of work. Not a devastating blow, but certainly an annoyance.

The Thing has been so obnoxious this week no one can stand her. She is getting into things at a rate I can't keep up with and she isn't sleeping at night. I'm so tired, I haven't had a decent nights' sleep all week and I can't begin to describe the messes I've had to clean up. She spilled (poured?) shampoo all over the bathroom floor which required me to scrub on my hands and knees to get it off.

The frosting on the cake of my week happened yesterday when I received a call from the stables where the Diva takes riding lessons. Apparently Scooter died. He was very old, I heard he was about 30 years old, so he was living on borrowed time. My daughter was the last one to ride him on Wednesday and she got to give him carrots. Anyway, DH and I got the unenviable task of telling her last night. She was alright at first, I was a little surprised. But ten minutes later she fell apart. Broke my heart. Its one thing to see them cry because their brother called them a name, another to see them devastated. She's okay now, a little subdued. I'm sure she will fall in love with her new horse next week.

There have been a couple of bright spots. The book I was reading Rebecca Forster's Privileged Witness was awesome, a total page turner. Talk about an escape. She writes legal thrillers. Great suspense.

The other positive was I finished the first big phase in my recipe project. I found some great recipes, found some others that I had to wonder what the hell I was thinking when I cut them out. Most of them are going to have to be modified to fit in with my "lifestyle change."

Tonight should be okay. My kids are spending the night at their grandparents. Hubby is taking me to the movies, something we haven't done since the last "Star Wars" movie. He lucked out, he won't have to take me out to dinner because my mouth hurts so bad.

So, how was your week?