Friday, April 21, 2017

Flashback Friday: Making Friends and Heartache

April 1987:
This month began with a letter from my AF officer, who announced he was being discharged for disorderly conduct, and busted down to Sergeant.  He would contact me when he was back home.

In the meantime, friend Carole introduced me to her friend Laura, who was 21, and we decided to go to a local nightclub one evening.  We had a few drinks and danced, then two boys joined us, and bought us a round.  One of the guys and I hit it off, though L didn't seem interested in his friend.  Bob and I danced more, then I ended up going back to his place with him.  Two weeks later, L and I went to another bar, where a guy bought us each a beer..."Ladies, if nothing else, you have a round on me."  I don't drink beer, so it was pretty much wasted on me, lol!  But at one point, I felt someone was standing behind me, so I turned around and there was Bob!

"Took you long enough to realize I was here..." he teased.

He and I spent some time outside necking, then had a misunderstanding about what was going to happen next.  We ended up separated, and I realized my ID was missing.  Without it, I couldn't get back in the dorm, and ended up waking up my grumpy roommate downstairs to let me in.  The next day, I walked home with a girl in my morning class, since she lived next door to Bob and his housemates, and while he was waking up, ended up playing my first game of darts with one of his housemates.  When Bob came out, he handed me his ID and told me he'd woken up with it under his pillow.  Could we go for a walk?  I said sure.

He confessed to having a girlfriend at IU, and was sorry for leading me on.  I told him not to worry, and told him about my AF officer.  I wasn't looking for anything more than just a good time.  Still, I never saw him again afterward.

In the meantime, S sent me a letter and asked me to come down the last weekend in April.  It happened to coincide with the VU Spring Formal, and I'd been asked to attend by friend D (remember him from Halloween '86?  Yeah....all was forgiven....).  Another girl I'd known from VU was also attending BSU, and when I mentioned I was heading south, she asked if I would take her.  So we found a ride to my house, where I'd already arranged to borrow the car for the weekend.

M and I began to clash about halfway to VU.  I was a firm believer at the time of 'driver picks the music', but she was a born-again Christian and wanted to only play Amy Grant tunes.  Since I also love Amy, we jammed to her tunes the rest of the way, even though I was inwardly fuming, since I wanted to listen to MY mix tape.

Anyway, we arrived; I dropped her off at her friends' house, then discovered I couldn't stay with S, since his grandfather was now living with his mother.  No problem; I stayed in my old dorm room.  When it came time for the dance, however, S still hadn't called, so I dressed and prepared for a night with my dance partner.  However, just as I was about to leave, S called and I did something REALLY stupid:  I went to the lobby, took pics of me and D in our finery, then went back to the room, changed, and went to be with S.

For. One. Hour.

I was pissed.

Here I'd missed a magical night of dancing in order to babysit a drunken ex-AF man in the throes of a huge pity party.

The next day, I went back to find a much happier S, but I still had to go home.  M and I left, she rejoicing about her fun weekend and me keeping my misery to myself.  I thought Dad might let me drive the car back to BSU, but he said no.  He drove us back, and it was an uncomfortable drive back to Muncie.

Next Month:  Fun with my Dad!

Present Day:
The body is trying to catch something, and my voice is sliding into the bass octave.  Don't think there will be any karaoke this weekend.

We've been working diligently in the yard, as the temps have been in the upper 70s, and making progress:)

Friday, April 7, 2017

Flashback Friday: Fun With Family:)

April 1977: 
One sunny but chilly Saturday, my dad and his friend Don Campbell decided to rent a canoe and paddle down Sugar Creek.  Along with Don's wife Cathy, we dropped them off at the canoe rental place, then drove to Turkey Run.  My sister and I played on the playground, hiked some trails, and ate lunch until it was time to meet the men at the red covered bridge.

While we waited for them to arrive, we waded in the water, skipped stones, and wandered across the bridge.  After they arrived, Dad took each one of us for a brief paddle around the area, and we laughed when it was my sister's turn:  She was so light, her end of the canoe was completely out of the water!

This was the Easter year with the hula-hoops.  I remember taking my blue hoop out to the street and rolling it around, all the while trying not to trip in my long lavender dress.  My sister went out into the grass and tried to hula with it....Mom came out to take our pictures and was non to pleased to discover we both had grass stains on our new white shoes, and in my case, around the hem of my dress!

Later that month, my 5th grade class went to the Barnum and Bailey Circus in Indianapolis, which meant getting up early on a Saturday to catch the bus at school.  I don't remember much, other than enjoying myself, but I wasn't sitting with any of my friends, and couldn't get the barker's attention when I wanted a cracker jack.

I realized I left out a Very Important Aspect of 5th grade:  The Sex-Ed talk, which took place sometime during the 2nd semester.

We were separated into two groups, boys and girls.  We girls were shown 'the movie' which talked about menstruation, changes which were about to occur in our bodies, and of course, sex and pregnancy.  I THINK we were even shown a baby being born, which grossed me out, and I swore I would NEVER have kids.

Next Month:  Breaking The Rules

Present Day:
I've been spending this past week with my parents, and Mom and I have cleared bookshelves, put away the remaining Christmas decorations and pulled out the Easter ones.  Had Arni's on Sunday; lamb chops Mon; O'Charley's on Tues; pork chops Wed, and teriyaki pork tenderloin on Thursday.  I go home sometime tomorrow, for Holy Hell Week (LOL!)

Seriously, the choir sings at Palm Sunday service; that same day I have Chrism Mass practice in Evansville, where I'm also picking up copies of Crossroads.  Chrism Mass on Tuesday, then choir singing Holy Thursday, Easter Vigil, and 7:30am Easter morning.  I predict I'll be taking a nap sometime on Easter.

Have a wonderful and blessed Palm Sunday!

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

April Reading Lost

How well did I do in March?  
-Buy copies of Hotel, Orion, and Kira (check!)
-Do well at Eagles Craft Fair  Bleh....sold 0.  Hardly anyone showed up.
-Finish Ghost Story  Not yet....
-Buy copies of Crossroads Antho (releasing March 15th!) Not arriving until April 3rd now.
-Start gathering promo for April signing  Check:)
-Lose 5 pounds  No, but haven't gained any either (whew!)
-Finish formatting previously released books (already did 1-4 of AU:)  AU 5-7, check:)  KM's Chosen, check:); WAH, check:)
-Pay cover artist(s)  Nope...
-Watch King's Speech and Le Mis, plus classic TV DVDs  Nope...

April Goals:
-Buy copies of Crossroads Check:)
-Add words to Ghost Story (finished it!  Total WC:  7989!) and Heart Song
-Do well at Vendor Fair on the 15th was a bust.
-Do well at Author's Fair on the 29th
-Make another payment to cover artist(s)
-Lose 5 lbs
-Finish cleaning up yard
-Start clearing out junk in green house
-Hang pictures/pretties
-Have a good Easter  Check:)

April Reading List:
History Lessons-Dana Lindaman and Kyle Ward  Interesting....
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
Tomb of the Moon-NE Riggs
Friends Forever-Danielle Steele  Good and heartbreaking at the same time.

After Ten-Michele Shriver  DRR!  Wonderful story!!!!
Sliding Home-Amber Skyze  Good:)
Unknown-Lexy Timms  Excellent!  Wanted to smack her mom and sister....
The Promise-J.M. Daviess
The Boss-LT
The Boss Too-LT
Who's The Boss Now-LT
Love Life-LT
Unwilling-K.D. Wood

Karaoke Song List:
Weekend In New England-Barry Manilow Bleh....too low!
Harlem Shuffle-Rolling Stones  Got through it, but (shivers)
We're Not Gonna Take It-Twisted Sister  Best one of the night; a Marine was in attendance, so very fitting, considering we'd just bombed ISIS.
Welcome To The Black Parade-My Chemical Romance DNH
I'll Fall In Love Again-Sammy  Hagar DNH
West End Girls-Pet Shop Boys  Not too bad...

We've Only Just Begun-Carpenters
It's Your Call-Reba
What About Love-Heart

Mama I'm Coming Home-Ozzy Osbourne Ugh...
Mama Mia-Abba Nailed it!
Man in the Mirror-Michael Jackson  Ugh...too low, and there was a fight going on, so thankfully no one noticed!
Man I Feel Like A Woman-Shania Twain Bleh.
Mandolin Rain-Bruce Hornsby  Good:)  Now to get this and the next two on video.....
Maneater-Hall and Oates  Good:)
Maniac-Michael Sembello  Good:)
Manic Monday-Bangals  Nailed it!
Mary Jane's Last Dance-Tom Petty Slightly low, but nailed it:)
Material Girl-Madonna Again, nailed it!
Me and Bobby McGee-Janis Joplin  Not too bad...
Me and Julio Down By the Schoolyard-Paul Simon  DNH
Meet Me Halfway-Kenny Loggins Nailed it:)

Memory-Elaine Page
Metal Health-Quiet Riot
Mickey-Toni Basil
Midnight Blue-Lou Graham

Thursday, March 30, 2017

"Who Is This Person?"

Have you ever googled yourself?

Authors do it frequently, in order to see what pops up when a new release occurs.  We're also known to put a Google Alert on our name and title.

When I first picked the pen name 'Molly Daniels', the only time I used the internet was to read and send email, or go to certain websites.  I didn't know how to 'search' for anything; I simply typed in the website provided.

My 1st book was published Dec 31, 2002, and it was maybe six months later I learned anther 'Molly Daniels' was making headlines because she helped her husband fake his own death.  She was based in either Seattle or Texas, and I'm in Indiana, so people who had read about her would jokingly ask me if I was her.  I'd explain my pen name. reached out to me, in order to pose the above question as a part of their initiative to raise awareness around online presence, so I googled myself for the first time in several months. Remember that if you ever come across a situation that seems like too much to handle alone, there are  crisis management services that can help.  Here are the following results:

1)  I am NOT the Molly Daniels who helped her husband fake his own death.  I live in Indiana, not Texas. (Items 1-3 and 6)  My husband's name is Daniel, not Clay.

2)  I am NOT the actress Molly Daniels  (Item #8) My acting career ended at the 8th grade, lol!

3)  I am NOT Molly Daniels on Twitter (Item #4)  I'm only on Twitter as my alter-ego, Kenzie Michaels

4)  I AM the Molly Daniels on Items #5, 7, and when you click the facebook link, I'm at the top.  I also frequently get confused with Molly S. Daniels, since we are 'friends' and have several friends in common.

When I google Kenzie's name, items #1-2, 5, 9-12 are me.  Not the others.

I stopped putting an alert on 'Kenzie' when the blog hops/review tours ceased.  I was suddenly getting notices for every athlete with that name.

Now I tell newbie writers to google themselves or potential pen names to make sure no one is confused:)  

If you want to see the blog post I did about googling titles, click The Great Title Search of 2014.

Now, my assignment for you is, Google yourself.  Which items are actually YOU?

Friday, March 24, 2017

Flashback Friday: Officially Online!

March 2007:
Remember back in Aug 2006, when I'd worked up the nerve to join the local writer's group, met TD, but two months later had to move?  In late Feb/early March, after things settled down, we had DSL internet installed.  It was wonderful!  After only knowing dial-up, and AOL being my homepage, it was interesting to get used to Yahoo and Google.  One slight hitch:  When my older son set up the email, he put it in 'my' name, but because his dad's name was on the account, I was suddenly getting emails in D's name....unless people already knew it was me!

I still kept my AOL mail, and one day an email from TD popped up, inviting me to join the Indiana Writer's Connection, a chat loop.  I admit, I was leery at first, since I'd seen my 1st chat loop back in 1993, and wondered how people could keep up with the conversation!  But I agreed to give it a try....and suddenly I discovered a whole new world out there.....a world where writers could connect with one another and share information, commiserate, or simply be supportive.  

One of the most valuable pieces of information was how to make a website.  We'd just gotten our tax money, so on the advice of none other than Ms Kelly Kirch, I paid for an entire year's subscription for, and started building my website.

I chatted with published authors, writers who were trying to be published, and writers who simply liked to write, but had no desire to publish.  Once in a while we'd have 'word wars', where we'd all write for an hour, then report back on our progress.

I was in heaven, since no one around here at the time cared about my desire to put words on a page.  I was also thrilled that the pace was slower than what I'd seen in 1993!  Being so small in numbers, you could chat at your own pace.

Next Month:  WriteStuffWrite Conference and Reconnecting!

Present Day:
Update on NCAA 2017:
The 1st and 2nd rounds were kind to me!
Round 1:  Called 13/16 and 15/16
Round 2:  Called 5/8 and 6/8.
Purdue and Butler both advanced, but Villanova (defending champs) were knocked off.  There's still hope for Gonzaga:)

I finally finished the new short story for 'Family Secrets'!  I added another 1400 words and successfully wrapped it up in a believable manner, and everyone who's read it has FINALLY been satisfied.  One of my beta readers is still not happy with certain details left out, but she's over-ruled by two others and myself, who believe it's unnecessary, since those characters are not the focus of the story.  I got it written twelve hours under deadline, and I was so thrilled, I took off Wednesday to simply relax and READ!

Ant Invasion:
We've been invaded by a small army of unwelcome guests.  At first, it was simply a stray ant here or there, when someone would spill Kool Aid or sugar.  But now they're running all over the counter top more frequently, and I'm finding them on the table, in the dogs' food bowls, and yesterday I had 3 floating in my coffee cup (eeeuuuuu!).  Time to get rid of them and mix up a little something to take back to their queen, so they will permanently leave us alone.  *rubs hands in glee*

Spring Break:
My youngest has had a relaxing Break, sleeping in until 10am and playing video games with his cousins.  He's also spent time at the Pet Port, and wants to start walking dogs or playing with the cats.  The only problem is, since he's only 13, a parent has to accompany him.  I was too busy working on Secrets, and his dad didn't feel well, so he's been a little frustrated the past few days.

A and J are here for the next week also; they had 2 weeks off for Break.  A spends most of her time on the phone, and J has been playing video games with W.  It's been pretty peaceful:)

The spouse's 63rd birthday was Monday, and the older kids bought him a new gas grill.  We grilled pork chops and enjoyed the warmer weather.  On Tuesday, we spent the afternoon working on the front yard, and raking up leaves and pine needles.  I went into 'destruct-mode' and tore off most of the vines on the brown house's porch.  It was cold on Wednesday, but finished up yesterday.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Flashback Friday: Signing The Papers!

March 1997:
The weather improved; our application for a new home had been approved, so we met with N American Housing to sign the papers and make the down payment on our new home.  Mom and Dad loaned us $5K, and even came down to watch the kids while we did this.  To celebrate, we all went out to dinner.

There was one slight hitch:  After we sat through the the long, boring explanation of EVERYTHING (I was ready to scream; surely a child could even understand all the terms?), and D haggling over the issue of dirt being trucked in (as an operator, he knew there would be enough dirt in the hole dug for the foundation to spread around and back-fill; none would be needed to be trucked in!), we reached the final page when Carol realized she'd used the wrong form.  In front of us, she ripped up all but the final page, where we'd signed, and told us she'd redo it, and there was no need for us to return to initial/sign all over again.  We naively believed her.

Fast-forward several months when our contract arrived; the order for three trucks of dirt was back in the contract, and there was nothing we could do about it.

Next Month:  Another Fight

Present Day:
NCAA Basketball is in full swing!

I'll also be at the Eagles Craft Show tomorrow, and have already sold two of Kenzie's new book! Plus, my submissions for the Crossroads Antho have been approved, so one less thing to stress over.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Flashback Friday: 806 Woody Hall

March 1987:
I moved into my new dorm room on the BSU campus, and was slightly dismayed at the news I'd have to take the elevator to the 6th floor of Woody/Shales, then walk up two more flights of stairs.  Fortunately, since I was moving in, I could use the service elevator to move my belongings.

My new room was painted in rainbow colors, with lacy pink curtains at the window.  I was to have the bed by the door, and my new roomie had gone home for the weekend.  I later learned her previous roommate had committed suicide over the break between quarters, by overdosing on pain medication while in the bathtub.  Most of the students had already departed; she simply swallowed her meds, took a bath, and went to sleep.  I don't know if she eventually drowned, or if the tub was even full of water.  All I know is a maintenance worker found her the next day.

When Valerie Martin walked in, we instantly clicked.  We were both quiet, and shared a love of the same TV shows.  She already had a television, so I'd sent mine back with my parents.  My friend Carole was living down the road at the Baptist House, and invited me to join the choir.  I also met Shawna, Shawn, and I'm blanking on Shawna's roommate's name.  She had been Homecoming Queen at her HS.  Anyway, I'd gone to the Back To School Dance with them, and when slow dances began, the four of us sat down.  Instantly, four boys came over and snapped the others up, with the fourth one approaching me, but made a detour at the last minute, the expression on his face clearly saying, "Whoa, I don't know you!" 

I didn't take offense; I simply enjoyed being around others and dancing again.

Classes began, and I enjoyed all of them.

Next Month:  Meeting Bob....

Present Day:
Mom's had back pain this entire week, and finally went to the doctor on Wednesday.  We've gone through the two chests and weeded out what she wanted to get rid of, plus went through two stacks of papers.  Hopefully today, I'll be making a trip to the post office to mail some packages for her:)  I'll be heading home tomorrow, arriving in time to sing at church, and go to karaoke tomorrow night.

Writing-wise, I've spent this entire week working on a new submission to the Crossroads Antho, as well as cleaning up a previously-unfinished one, to be titled Family Secrets, and replace the other one which was deemed 'too dark and disturbing' a week ago.  Who knew I'd write a story in which a person *might* need a security blanket before reading it?  Sigh.......guess they'd better never read Koontz, King, Andrews, or even Irving!

Spring Forward begins this weekend, so on Monday, I'll be sleep-deprived again.  Fun, fun.  Plus, Mother Nature continues her bi-polarism....the weather's been in the 60s all week, but today it drops into the 30s, with snow expected in my town and southward tomorrow.  Boo....hiss!

Have a great weekend and stay warm!

Friday, March 3, 2017

Flashback Friday: Day Trip With Dad!

March 1977:
Mom was still studying hard for her Master's degree in Health Education, so one day Dad announced he had a special treat in mind for my sister and I.  We would drive to Chicago and spend the day at the Science and Industry Museum.

I remember being fascinated by the Doll House, and longed to spend more time listening to the description, but since we had a lot to do and see, I had to be content with listening to one of the 'phones', then accompanying Dad to other exhibits.

I THINK the submarine was a new attraction; it wasn't in its current 'home'; I remember having to go outside to go through it.  I do remember the joke about the drunk coming out of the bar and being stuck in traffic while the submarine was being moved!

Ten years would go by until my sister made a return trip, bringing me a wax mold of that doll house..."I remember how much you loved it!", and it wouldn't be until 2015 until I returned with my youngest, along with my sister and her two kids, to tour the museum again.  We saw the Doll House (now I know it's actually called the Fairy Castle!), the submarine, the coal mine, and ended the day with a trip to Giordano's Pizza:)

Next Month:  The Circus!

Present Day:
I've been hard at work the past week, to reformat all my AU books with page numbers and headers, as well as updating the copyright page.  Finished #7 yesterday, which means today, I get to turn my attention to Kenzie's three books (Wild At Heart, Heart's Last Chance, and NiKoh's Chosen), so they all match the interior of Kira's Slice of Pizza:)

I'm also hoping to send off the check for the booth rental at the Eagles Craft Show on the 18th.  Local author NE Riggs (fantasy genre) may join me, which will give her an idea of what to expect next month when we're at Karen's Book Barn in La Grange, KY:)

This weekend, I'm off to Mom and Dad's again.  Mom wants to go through a couple of chests, as well as finish the jewelry inventory.  I was supposed to leave tomorrow, but just discovered my Teen (he turned 13 on Wednesday!) has a band concert on Sunday.  So can't leave until then, sigh!

Going to the church's Fish Fry tonight, then off to the Open Gallery for the kick-off of the First Fridays again.

Weather this week has still been good, in the 50s and 60s, and we had rain on Wednesday.

What words set your teeth on edge?  Kenzie's blogging about that today.

Have a safe and happy weekend!

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

March Reading List

Apparently, I had a productive February!  Edited and released Kenzie's new book, Kira's Slice of Pizza, in both e-format and print, plus accomplished most of what I set out to do:
-Finish cover request and send partial payment  Check:)  It's beautiful!!!!
-Finish Ghost Story  I've added at leat 600 words to it:)
-Add words to Heart Song  Nope
-Buy copies of Hotel Stories Nope
-Get more decorations up on walls still working on it:)
-Finish watching Downton Abbey Check:)
-Finish Kira edits and start early promo  1st round finished, plus cover art shared:)  2/23:  Book Released!  Now working on print version.
-Lose 5 pounds Won't know until March
-File taxes  Check:) Got them back a week later!!!

Health:  Finally got my voice back!  I was getting aggravated with my limited range.

Books Read:  4
           Print:  2
        E-book:  2
            DNF:  1

Songs Added To Good List:  8, even though I had no voice for most of the month!

So What About March's Goals?
-Buy copies of Hotel, Orion, and Kira (check!)
-Do well at Eagles Craft Fair  Bleh....sold 0.  Hardly anyone showed up.
-Finish Ghost Story
-Buy copies of Crossroads Antho (releasing March 15th!) Not arriving until April 3rd now.
-Start gathering promo for April signing  Check:)
-Lose 5 pounds
-Finish formatting previously released books (already did 1-4 of AU:)  AU 5-7, check:)  KM's Chosen, check:); WAH, check:)
-Pay cover artist(s)
-Watch King's Speech and Le Mis, plus classic TV DVDs

March Reading List:
A Kings Christmas-Jean Joachim  DRR!  Loved this!
Shogun-James Clavell  Enjoyed certain parts....maybe need to watch mini-series again?

To Live Again-VI Edwards  LOVED It:)  DRR!
Christmas Valentine-Jamie Carie  DRR!  Loved it:)
Just Another Rainy Day-Amber Skyze  Very good:)
It's Always Something-Nikki Lynn Barrett  DRR!!!  LOVED THIS!

Karaoke Songs:
We Don't Need Another Hero-Tina Turner Did moderately well:)
Friends and Lovers-Gloria LoringlCarl Anderson  LOL....think I did better on Carl Anderson's part!
Hard To Say I'm Sorry-Chicago  Nailed it:)  Was disappointed Get Away wasn't included.  I wanted to do the dance that our color guard performed our senior year, lol!
We Don't Talk Anymore-Cliff Richards  Not too bad.
We Got The Beat-Go-Gos  Nailed it!
Hard To Say It's Over-Sheena Easton  DNH
Left in the Dark-Barbra Streisand  DNH
We Just Disagree-Dave Mason  Ugh.
Lifeline-Papa Roach  DNH
We May Never Pass This Way Again-Seals and Crofts  Ugh.

Lyin' Eyes-Eagles Bleh....don't think I was on the right note.
MacArthur Park-Donna Summer Abridged version and did well!
Mad About You-Belinda Carlisle  Nailed it:)
Magic-Olivia Newton-John  Nailed it, plus people sang along!
Magic Carpet Ride-Steppinwolf  Wasn't too bad; just had never practiced 2nd verse!
Magic Man-Heart  Did well on this one; bar patrons cheered and even had one guy looking enthusiastic!
Magnet and Steel-Walter Egan  Did okay on it.
Magical Mystery Tour-Beatles DNH
Make Me Lose Control-Eric Carmen  DNH
Makin' It-David Naughton Did fairly well...
Making Love Out Of Nothing At All-Air Supply  Elaine took the low part; I took the high, and we knocked it out of the park:)
Mama-Genesis  DNH
Mama He's Crazy-Judds  Did fairly well:)
Mama's Broken Heart-Miranda Lambert Wasn't too bad; flubbed a line on the 2nd verse though...
Disney Mambo #5:  Rocked it:)

Friday, February 24, 2017

Flashback Friday: Super Bowl!

Feb 2007:
The Super Bowl was set!  Colts vs Chicago Bears.

Since my oldest son's antics during the playoffs had threatened the shelf lives of everything on the piano, we completely cleared it off before friends arrived.

I'd acquired Colts PJ pants and a Peyton Manning shirt, so I changed right before the game began.  We snacked on Chicken Broccoli Braid, bacon-tomato cups, chips and dip, and whatever the spouse decided to fix.

Prince played the halftime show, in the rain, w/o missing any notes.  He was awesome!

In contrast to the playoffs, the game was a subdued affair, and the Indianapolis Colts won their 1st Super Bowl:)

For Valentine's Day, the spouse showed up with chocolates, as well as a stuffed Mama Tiger and cub for the daughter:)

We tried to eat at Garfield's restaurant, but the wait was too long, so we went across the street to the Dogwood Amish Buffet.

Next Month:  Joining The Online Community!

Present Day:
Kenzie's 10th book released yesterday!  Go here to check it out and enter her contest:)

The weather the past two weeks has been outstanding!  Temps in the 60s and 70s....the only reason I've even worn a coat is because of rain!

Rehearsals for the Community Choir's Once Upon A Tree have begun:)  S and I also drove up to Ben Davis last night for MDQ's choir concert.

Filed our taxes last Sunday; we're getting $800+ back from Fed, but have to send $900+ to the state.  Bleh.

I did sing at a funeral on Wed, and had a disaster strike during the Responsorial:  G had one version; mine was completely different!  We only 'synched up' during verses 2 and 4, as well as the response.  OOPS!  Still, I like being paid to sing:)

Have a great weekend!  Hopefully, we'll be doing some cleaning up of the front yard and maybe the storage unit.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Flashback Friday

Feb 1997:
Valentine's Day was just another day; our taxes had been filed, but the refund hadn't arrived yet.  I fixed a nice dinner for the kids, bought them a modest amount of chocolate, AND we discovered we'd been approved for our new home.  We'd found some land in Morgan County, but now had to decide which lot we wanted.  I liked #26, but D liked #14 better.  When we met with the owners, it turned out the lot I liked had already been sold, so we settled for the other one, and chose the display model house.  All we had to do now was come up with a down payment and sign the papers.

Meanwhile, my baby girl was thriving in her pre-school class:)  She was making friends, enjoyed her teacher, and looked forward to every Wednesday.

After our refund arrived, we had a nice meal and paid off some debts.  D even attended a meeting and made the decision to sign up with QuikStar, a spinoff of Amway.  I wasn't thrilled, but he was excited about it, so I reluctantly agreed to go along to the next meeting.

I also began chauffeuring two kids home from school; I took the neighbor's daughter to school and even picked her up sometimes; the twins' mom made the decision to pull them out of their preschool, so I now had them all day long.  I did enjoy the money I was making:)

Managed to see T for a while, but his attitude was not the greatest; I began to think maybe that two months in a row was a bit much; he needed more time to 'departmentalize' his feelings toward me.

Next Month:  Signing the Papers!

Present Day:
My parents are arriving later today, to spend some time with their grandchildren and great-grandchild, and for Mom to finally see the house:)

Tomorrow, I believe the daughter and I will be going to see 50 Shades Darker.

Sunday, I have to sing at the 11am service, and I will finally finish watching SE6 of Downton Abbey.  I also borrowed the movie Suffragette, and have to watch it this weekend:)

Kenzie is talking music!  Go visit her here.

Have a great weekend!  Our weather is supposed to be in the high 60's!  In FEBRUARY!

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Flashback Friday (Yes, I know It's Really Saturday!): Heartache

February 1987:
Brief Recap:  After graduation, I returned home to temp at a local craft factory while waiting for the Spring Quarter to start in March for BSU (providing I was accepted).  JF and I agreed to do the long-distance thing, and in January, for his birthday, we had a long-awaited reunion that was magical....

What followed, though, can only be called my period of rebellion.

I missed JF so much, I began to call him on a daily basis, whereas previously my phone calls had been weekly.  My work at the factory was good, though one day I was called to be in the Stuffing area, and since we'd been told that if we were placed in an area, we were to stay there until being reassigned, it stunned me two days later when I was the only one working in that area.  I resented it, until I asked someone about it and they told me to return to my table.  I did, and felt better, though I began every day by asking my mother to pray that I wouldn't be recalled to that area!

My work on the then-titled Love On The Rocks continued, and I was counting down the days until I could return to JF's for the weekend.  The day before I was scheduled to go, I called him, and received a blow.

"Don't bother coming down; we're done.  Goodbye."  He hung up.

I stared at the phone, then slowly replaced the receiver and walked, in numb shock, to my room.  How could this have happened?  I was so numb I couldn't even process the news, or even cry.  I returned to the kitchen (remember when the family phone was only in one place?) and called my BFF, to see if I could sleep in my old room that weekend; I'd drown my sorrows with her.  The next day, I drove down, still trying to process the breakup.

EY commiserated with me, then apologized; she had plans with her b/f for the evening.  I told her to go ahead; I'd amuse myself for the evening.  I called TH, my 'FWB' guy from the previous summer, and told him what had happened.  He took me to dinner, along with DW, the guy with whom I'd had the one night stand at Halloween.  Thanks to DW, I discovered JF had been cheating on me the last three weeks, and had confided that my suddenly clingy attitude was getting on his nerves, and he was preferring the more mature behavior of someone in his evening class.  That news put me over the edge, and the tears finally fell.  Knowing I'd just had a blow, DW offered to take me dancing at a new nightclub, The Bank.  I agreed, but TH had plans.  When a very good-looking friend of DW's showed up and on crutches, I invited him along, since I did NOT want to be alone with DW.  We had a wonderful time, with me dancing with my new friend CS on the slow songs, due to his sprained ankle.  We left around midnight, and dropped CS off at the dorm.  Needing something, but not knowing what, I drove by JF's trailer and discovered a strange car parked outside, then drove over to Illinois to simply see my AF officer's house.  DW had been making hints about going back to his room, but I was most definitely NOT in that sort of mood.  I timed it so we returned to campus after Open Vis was over, then I went to my old dorm room and cried myself to sleep.

I did meet with TH the next afternoon before heading home, and the next day brought news of my acceptance to BSU; I was to move in to my new dorm room in LaFollet Complex, Woody Hall, Room 806 the second Saturday of March.

Next Month:  A New Chapter Begins!

Present Day:
I've had a lazy two days.  I've binge-watched Seasons 4 and 5 of Downton Abbey, and will begin SE 6 tomorrow.  Today, I'm helping serve lunch to the Men's Retreat, then choir is singing at the 5 pm service at Sacred Heart.  I'm praying my voice will cooperate, since it refused to do so Thursday night.

Probably why I feel a bit depressed, lol....

I did manage to finish the 1st round edits on Kira, and have paid the 1st installment on my shiny new cover:)  You can see it here.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Wait....What Happened?

In case you were deep in a cave or some remote island with no wifi, there was a big game that was played on Sunday, Super Bowl 51, NE Patriots vs Atlanta Falcons.  NE was the heavy favorite, but my household is a divided one, with my older son and I cheering loudly for the Falcons.  I'm just tired of 'Brady Fever' and think it's high time another team won.  In case you've not noticed in the nearly ten years I've had this blog (has it really been that long?  *gasp!*), I often cheer for the underdog.

Opening Ceremony:
I love Luke Bryan, and thought he did an awesome job on the National Anthem:)

I was also thrilled to see the stars of Hamilton perform God Bless America, and giggled when they inserted 'and sisterhood' into the last stanza!  No, I did not view it as 'political posturing' or 'standing up for women'.  It's a song, people....get over it.  I was neither offended nor burning my bra in favor of it.

I was also thrilled to see Frmr Pres HW Bush and Barbara, who had recently been hospitalized, do the coin toss.  Though the coin flew into the Falcons' line still went Atlanta's way.

1st Qtr:
Both teams tried hard, and it soon became a running joke between my daughter and I if either team would ever get the ball past the 50 yd line and into their own territory.  Score at end:  0-0, and I tossed out the idea, 'Hey, wouldn't it be neat if the entire game went into overtime, scoreless?'  My daughter sniffed.

"Brady won't let that happen."

2nd Qtr:
Atlanta put up 3 TDs AND sacked Brady 4 times.  I started cheering whenever the Pats finally moved the ball past their own 30 yd line, but was thrilled when the Falcons kept them from a TD, and they had to settle for a field goal.  Score at halftime:  21-3.  Never in the history of the SB had a team ever come back to win from more than a 10 pt deficit.  I was also slightly put out because we hadn't seen any *good* commercials.

OMG, Lady Gaga rocked!  She pulled a Pink stunt, being hoisted on wires and flipping end over end from what seemed to be the top of the stadium.  Very classy!  She began with a line of God Bless America, then segued into This Land Is Your Land.  After landing on the stage, she went into Pokerface, Born This Way, Telephone, and Bad Romance.  Time for a quick change before slowing it down for a new one, even saying hi to her mom and dad, before jumping back into Bad Romance and exiting with a mic drop, a catch of a ball, and jumping down off camera.  Very well done and very classy!  No scandalous politicking!

3rd Qtr:
I joked that the thumping heard wasn't due to the music, it was Brady chewing out everyone and kicking some a$$.  It seemed to work, though the Falcons did get another TD, but ran into some holding issues.  Where previously they'd force a 4th down punt, this time on the 3rd down, defense would get penalized for holding and the 5 yd penalty would result in 1st down.  Thus the Pats marched down field and scored their 1st TD finally, but could not connect on the extra point.  Score at end:  28-9.  Both Brady and Coach looked furious.

4th Qtr:
Pats seemed to wake up, or maybe they had simply worn out the Falcons?  Because nothing the Falcons did worked.  Brady and Co scored two TDs and another field goal to tie, sending the SB into its 1st OT in the history of the SB.  Score:  28-28.

Pats won the toss, and pushed the Falcons all the way to the 2nd yd line, then scoring a TD.  Rules in OT say whoever scores first wins, so there you have it.  34-28, an awesome comeback for the very tired Brady!

As per my daughter's requirements, I spent yesterday in her Tom Brady jersey.

I also joked about needing a teddy bear, counseling, and the need to riot because my team didn't win.

The game echoed our political climate, and I decided to put my tongue in my cheek in reference to those on the other side. You knew I had a twisted sense of humor, right?  ;)

Monday, February 6, 2017

February Reading List

So far, 2017 is off to a really bad start:  4 celebrity deaths and 5 classmates/teachers/friends.
January claimed Mary Tyler Moore, Miguel Ferrer, Barbara Hale, Mike Conners, Craig Clifton, Mr. Kendall, Mr. Prill, Mr. Skibinski, and Carla Jones. 

How'd I do last month?
-Give B partial payment for print covers (still yet-to-be-made) Check:)
-Send Kira off to editor with payment  Check:)
-Finish cover request and send off with partial payment Not yet....
-Order more copies of Hotel (currently sold out)  Not yet....
-Finish Ghost Story  Not even opened it.
-Add at least 5K words to Heart Song  Added 500 words....
-Find out where the Crossroads antho stands  Check....sort of....?
-Pack away the Christmas decorations  (check!) and begin hanging pictures and shelving units in my new house. Check:)
-Send some 'pretties' to my SIL (check!) and photograph others for family members  
-Watch SE4 (Check!) and 5 (Check!) of Game of Thrones, plus maybe even 6 (check!), then start on the Classic TV DVDs I've acquired.  Began Downton Abbey instead:)

Health:  Apparently, even though I've ping-ponged last fall, I am now the same weight I was six months ago.  Sigh....I guess that's a good thing!

Books Read:  16
             Print:  4
         E-book:  12
              DNF:  1

Songs Added To Karaoke Good List:  Only 4, due to voice taking a vacation and being gone.

So What Do I Hope To Accomplish This Month?
-Finish cover request and send partial payment  Check:)  It's beautiful!!!!
-Finish Ghost Story  I've added at leat 600 words to it:)
-Add words to Heart Song
-Buy copies of Hotel Stories
-Get more decorations up on walls still working on it:)
-Finish watching Downton Abbey Check:)
-Finish Kira edits and start early promo  1st round finished, plus cover art shared:)  2/23:  Book Released!  Now working on print version.
-Lose 5 pounds
-File taxes  Check:)

Feb Reading Schedule:
A Maverick For The Holidays-Leanne Tyler  DNF
Because It's Christmas-Kathryn Shay  Finally finished this!
The Girl w/o a Name-Sandra Block  Did NOT see that ending!  WOW....

Misfortune's Lady-Sandra Sookoo  Good story:)
Healing Hearts-Liz Crowe Loved this!!

Karaoke Songs:
Week 1: Husky voice; sang Jar of Hearts, alto part.
Week #2:  Still no voice.
Week #3:
We've Got Tonight-Bob Seeger  Fairly good....
From This Moment-Shania Twain  Gary sang it with me and we nailed it:)
Week #4:  Celebrated Release Day (Kenzie's Kira's Slice of Pizza) with an entire Miranda Lambert line up:)


Love Story-Taylor Swift  Sounded good:)
Love The One You're With-Crosby Stills and Nash  Thought it was a bit crackly, but others liked it:)
(rotation was 90 mins)
Love Will Keep Us Together-Captain and Tenille  Did well:)
Lovin Touchin Squeezin-Journey  Rocked the bar:)
(Valentine's weekend; sang other songs also and rotation was 1 hour long.)
Week #3:  Daughter and I went to see the FSD movie, which I attempted to sleep through, and was too tired to go to 'roke afterward.
Leave The Pieces-Wreckers Did well, except for bridge.
Loverboy-Billy Ocean  Better than expected!  Had to sing 'You want a be my lover, lover, loverboy...'
Lovergirl-Teena Marie  Very surprised this turned out well, considering I didn't know the right words!
Lucky Star-Madonna  Slightly high; probably won't sing again.