Friday, May 28, 2010

Flashback Friday: Graduation

I don't have a scanner, so can't show you K's kindergarten picture or his Senior one. Nor do I know which box in storage contains the poem I wrote after his third day of kindergarten! But here's a brief rundown of his school life.

Pre-K: He had two 'girlfriends' when he started at age three, Shelby and Kailani. When they 'graduated' three years later, K declared loudly he wished Kailani was going to his school, and that she was the one he was going to marry.

K: We had moved to a new home in the country, and on the first day, he came running up to me. "Mommy! Mommy! I've made a friend!"

"Good for you! What's your friend's name?"

"I don't know...(what's your name?) Austin! He's my best friend!"

At the end of that year, not only were he and Austin inseparable, but he'd forgotten all about Kailani and set his sights on Katie.

Sport: Pee-wee Baseball. Tried being catcher, but with his newly acquired glasses, he didn't do a very good job. Tried to umpire instead of catch! Coach moved him to outfield.

1st: Upset the boys when he and Katie were both line leaders; he held the door to the cafeteria and let the girls enter first.

Sport: Pee-wee Baseball. Batting skills improved.

2nd: Came home with a smug look on his face. He'd kissed Katie on the slide.

Sport: Thoroughly enjoyed his last year of Pee-wee Baseball! Their team won nearly all their games, and he was picked for the All-Star team for the first time. Hit his first grand slam home run while I was in the concession stand:)

3rd: Had a tough time with his teacher; he knew the material and felt he wasn't being challenged. First year he dropped off the Honor Roll for one grading period. Played Santa Clause in the Christmas program.

Joined Cub Scouts and enjoyed it, taking 2nd place in Pinewood Derby.

Sport: Tried basketball, but hated to run. Did well in Minor League Baseball, discovering he enjoyed stealing bases!

4th: Loved his teacher; got accepted into the Accellerated Reading, Science, and Critical Thinking group. But Mom went to work, and no longer had a lot of extra time to help him read Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire out loud, and fell behind. I grew tired of nagging him to read.

Received his Arrow of Light award at Cub Scouts and picked the BSA troop for the next year. Again, his car placed 2nd at Pinewood Derby.

Sport: Joined Football, and after a week of not wanting to practice in the heat, Dad spoke to him about giving 110%; that the coach wouldn't put him in a game if he didn't see him making an effort. K discovered he enjoyed tackling other kids and not being scolded! His team not only went undefeated, but they put him on the All-Star team and was undefeated! Since we didn't live in the district, people began asking us if we planned to move...

Minor league baseball: Became a catcher's nightmare if he was on 3rd base:)

5th: Played Abraham Lincoln in their History class. Katie had moved away, but Kelsey was soon calling him 'husband'.

Crossed over to Boy Scouts and was soon bitten by the NASA bug after a trip to the Challenger Learning Center.

Sport: Enjoyed his last year of Football, again making the All-Star team, and still did well.
Major league baseball: Had disastrous year. K said, "It's not fun anymore!"
Tried basketball again, but again, discovered he hated to run.

6th: Tough year. He could do the Math faster in his head than on paper, but the teacher wanted the class to show their work. Drove me crazy when helping him with Algebra, because he kept asking 'why'. He also got suspended from school for a week, along with another boy, because K 'defended my honor' when the other boy made a joke about my unexpected pregnancy.

Was also bitten by the acting bug when he had a major role in church Christmas Play, The Best Christmas Ever.

7th: 6th grade math headaches behind him, he blossomed:) Since he was no longer playing sports, Boy Scouts took over his spare time. I think this was the year he 'tapped out' and received his Order of the Arrow badge.

8th: Still on the honor roll, he voiced concerns about his science grade, convinced he "wasn't doing too well." I spoke to the teacher, who informed me K was 4th in the class. His buddy Grant held the high score, with girls holding 2nd and 3rd. K just wanted to figure out how to score higher than the girls!

9th: We moved to our current home, and while it took him a few weeks to really adjust to the bigger school, he still did well and soon made friends. Found out if he'd only had one more credit hour, he'd be classified a sophomore instead of a freshman.

10th: He got his driver's license and worked in the watermelon fields during the summer. Started dating Samantha, but it quickly went from romance to strictly friendship. They are still 'Besties'.

11th: Started dating Sam's cousin Tanja. He also started AP classes and at the end of the year, already had all the credits he needed in order to graduate, except for his Senior classes.

12th: Decided to go out for football. At the end of the season, and watching him play in the final three games, the coach told us he wished he'd put him in the games sooner, and had had him all four years of high school. He still lettered and made many new friends. Joined track, and learned shot put and discus. Took Tanja to the New Year's Eve Ball, but she moved in January.

Got accepted to Purdue and also attained Eagle Rank in BSA. He graduates with honors tonight, and is ranked #29 in his class of 140.

Obviously, we did something right:) I'm proud of him!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Kids Are Funny Sometimes....

Where do kids get their ideas?

I noticed the other day that W's clothing seemed to be missing.. The last time his shirts, shorts, and socks disappeared, and weren't in the laundry chute, I'd discovered them already packed inside his travel bag. This time his 'going to Grandma's bag' was empty. So where were all his clothes?

Later that same day, I found him beside his dresser in the bedroom, searching through the bags I'd filled for Goodwill. He'd also unloaded the container I'd set aside for sentimental clothing items. I counted to ten before I blew up and asked him what he was doing.

"Making room for my closet."

His what?

Our home has exactly two closets: One in our room, which shares the plumbing to the bathtub. It is small, and holds my summer shirts, my capri pants and jeans, and my SU's 'Church Shirts'.

The other closet is larger, and is in K's room. The only clothing he hangs up are his dress shirts, his Scout uniform, and his dress slacks. So it also holds my winter clothing, mainly turtlenecks and long sleeved shirts.

S's clothes are downstairs in her dresser, or hanging on a clothes rod at the back of the basement. My dresses and skirts are also down there (my 'career' clothes).

W only has the white dresser above, which holds everything nicely. His shirt drawer gets a little packed at times, so I keep a close eye on what clothing he's outgrown. And recently, I'd purchased two inexpensive containers because I was tired of all the bags in the bedroom. I'd taken the sentimental clothing and placed it in the tote; the stuff to be donated sat nicely on top, and the area looked cleaner.

And then W decided he wanted a closet.

This is where he now wants to keep his clothes. Needless to say, I'll be tackling this job next. He's tossed everything on top of his dresser, and the extra sacks and blankets are now under his 'closet' and spilling out to the floor beside the bed.

Next year, when K leaves for Purdue, S will move her things into K's room, and W will be moving to her twin bed. As for if his clothing will move downstairs or we'll move this dresser to the other room, that's to be decided later.

I just want this corner straightened up again!

Goals for Today:
-Mop kitchen floor
-Sweep Hallway and Bathroom
-Go get party supplies from Dollar Store

Starting Lineup for Sunday's Indianapolis 500:
1. Helio Castroneves (3) 227.970
2. Will Power (12) 227.578
3. Dario Franchitti (10T) 226.990
4. Ryan Briscoe (6) 226.554
5. Alex Tagliani (77) 226.390
6. Scott Dixon (6) 226.233
7. Graham Rahal (30) 225.519
8. Ed Carpenter (20) 224.507
9. Hideki Mutoh (06) 223.487
10. Townsend Bell (99) 225.097
11. Justin Wilson (22) 225.050
12. Raphael Matos (2) 225.208
13. Mario Moraes (32) 224.888
14. Davey Hamilton (21) 224.852
15. Mike Conway (24) 224.583
16. Marco Andretti (26) 224.575
17. Ryan Hunter-Reay (37) 224.547
18. Dan Wheldon (4) 224.464
19. EJ Viso (8T) 224.380
20. Tomas Scheckter (23) 224.261
21. Ana Beatriz (25) 224.243
22. Simona de Silvestro (78) 224.228
23. Danica Patrick (7) 224.217
24. Bertrand Baguette (36) 224.189
25. Bruno Junqueira (33) 225.662
26. Alex Lloyd (19) 224.783
27. Mario Romancini (34) 224.641
28. John Andretti (43) 224.518
29. Sarah Fisher (67) 224.434
30. Vitor Meira (14) 224.388
31. Takuma Sato (5) 224.178
32. Tony Kanaan (11T) 224.072
33. Sebastian Saavedra (29) 223.634

I'm hoping either Dario, Graham, Marco, Ryan Hunter-Reay, or Danica win:)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

RIP Lucky Puppy...

First of all, the GOOD news:
1) Received an email from publisher, requesting the full MS of Kenzie's Class Reunion, the sequel to All She Ever Wanted:)

2) Brynn's interviewing Kenzie today on her blog. Go visit her so she won't be lonely?

Fall 1998:
"Molly, you've just got to see which puppy Ashley picked out at the pound! She's adorable!"

(Five minutes later): "Oh, she's so sweet! Looks just like my old Fudgie dog, minus the huge feet! What's her name?"

"Lucky. We think she's a year old."

Two years later...
"That damn dog keeps jumping over our fence and going out into the road. I'm taking her back to the pound tomorrow and having her put down. I'm tired of people telling me they've almost hit her."

"Nooooooo....let me have her! She gets along well with Shadow (our Norwegian Elkhound). We're getting ready to fence in a section of our yard...don't put that sweet dog down!"

"Okay; as soon as you're ready to take her, let me know."

One month later, I picked up a German Shepherd, confident I knew who she belonged to. The joke was on me: We'd end up keeping her! I thought I'd just blown my chance at Lucky, but to my surprise, my husband pulled up beside Lucky's owner and announced, "I should have the rest of the fence up by next week, and then we'll come get her."

(Molly breathes a sigh of relief!)

March 2000:
Lucky joins the family...and soon becomes known as 'Klepto' by the neighbors across the street! She would go over and play with their chocolate and silver Labs; drag bits of trash from their fire put; bring home horse bridles and whatever else she thought would make a nice play thing (she even brought home a dirty t-shirt Doug had laid over the stall door and forgotten!).

The neighbors would smile indulgently at her and go ahead and give her vaccines at the same time they gave their own dogs shots (they raised and sold the puppies produced by the chocolate Lab. Scooby, the silver Lab, would often get loose from his pen and come over to play with Lucky.

Spring 2001 or 2:
I was walking toward my kids' rooms around 7am to wake them up for school when I caught sight of Lucky in the road; another neighbor who was driving her truck waaay to fast; Lucky soon tumbling head over tail underneath the S-10 pickup and making a beeline for the woods behind our house.

I immediately turned around and went to the back door to call for her, but she wouldn't come. My neighbor knocked on the door, nearly in tears, apologizing profusely. I accepted her apology and went back to wake up the kids.

Later that day, we found Lucky frolicking down by her old owner's house (Maybe she'd had such a blow to the head she'd forgotten where she lived? LOL...), slightly battered, bloody, and scraped, but otherwise okay. We put her in the car and brought her home, cleaned her wounds, and called the vet, who told us just to watch her for any signs of seizures or vomiting. Neither one occurred, but I think she enjoyed the pampering and the love she received that evening!

May 2007:
We had to put our Shepherd Keisha to sleep; one week later, I dragged Shadow outside so he could do his business; apparently he'd been in the early throes of a heart attack because I found him an hour later exactly where I'd left him. So now was Lucky not only Alpha Female, she was Top Dog. Three weeks later, we discovered she DID know how to bark! Shadow had always been the 'voice' of all three, reminding us when we'd left them outside too long.

For the past several months, her bladder had begun to leak. We tried medication, putting her outside every two hours, or leaving her in the basement, but for a beloved family pet who loves kids and attention, not to mention the fact she was starting to have problems going up and down stairs, we felt it was an indignity she really didn't need.

She was thirteen years old; never knew a hungry day in her life; slipped off her chain and took regular laps around our neighborhood; tolerated the additions of two rats, a cat, and a cocker spaniel; and was bathed once a week. She enjoyed ten good years with us and is now happily hunting rabbits with Shadow. She will be missed, but she's no longer in pain.

And for me, that's the best part.

PS: All pictures were taken yesterday.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Terrific Tuesday with Kara Wills:)

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us about your latest release.
Hi! Thanks for having me today!

A little about me, hmm. To start, I’m a Jersey native, born and raised. My husband and I packed up our son and moved to Florida in 2005, where we currently live. I started writing when I was eleven, toying with young adult thrillers. I didn’t write my first romance until after I had my son. Now, I can’t imagine not writing romance!

My latest release from Siren-BookStrand is Destined Desires, which is the second novel in my Talaenian Fae series. It focuses on the love story between Rihanna, half-fae half-human, and Bryce, Rihanna’s reincarnated mortal soul mate, and their fight to stay alive and be together. I incorporated Shaye and Moira (Forbidden Heart) into Destined Desires, as they play a crucial role in the plot.
I have a short story coming out with Pink Petal Books on May 20th called The Gala Lover. It’s a fantasy romance that takes place on the planet Meridos. The story follows two reunited lovers, Jericho and Aisia, as they rekindle a past love affair, all the while dodging an assassin set on killing Aisia.

Have you incorporated actual events from your own life into your books?
Probably, lol. Many of my stories have a scene that involves a club or a bar. And martinis or wine. Children appear here and there. Jersey is a common setting. Me personally? Well, I have a son, I love martinis-all those fruity, trendy ones-and wine, I love getting dressed up to go out, and I used to go dancing a lot. But wait! I was never a partier, I swear! I loved going out to be with friends and release the tension of the week.

How much research do you do? Do you research first and then write, or do you write first, then research as needed?
Research never ends. I research from the moment an idea pops into my head until I type that last period, and then I research some more. Since I love building new worlds, research plays a huge role in helping me create believable settings, characters and elements that drive my stories.

Have you ever had an idea for a story which scared you after you began writing it?
No, and yes. I love anything that’s make-you-jump scary. I often find myself incorporating a sense of darkness into all my writing. However, I have been intimidated by a story or two that I’ve start. I love a story with layers. Lots of twists and turns to keep you guessing, keep you moving along. The intimidation comes when I look ahead into the story and hope I can do my characters justice. In the end, I’m satisfied with the outcome, even if I had to scratch a page, a scene or an entire portion of a book to get it right.

Is there any message you want readers to take from reading your work?
I’m an optimist through and through. I try and make one message stand clear. Never lose hope for happiness and always believe in fairytales.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? And have you ever had a story take on a life of its own?

I’m a proud pantser *smiling*. The closest to plotting I get is knowing the general direction my story will go. I know some key scenes and usually the end. As far as my stories taking on a life of their own? Oh yeah! All the time. My stories come to life as I write them. I tend to let my characters tell their story without restraint, although sometimes I wonder if I need to press the button on their electric collar, lol.

How long did it take for you to be published?
I have two answers for this one. From the time I started writing at 11, it took me 17 years. From the time I started submitting my work, it took me less than two years. I hesitated for a long, long time before putting myself out there. Had it not been for a friend nudging me to go ahead and pitch my story to my publisher, I might still be suffering some severe cold feet!

If you could go back and tell yourself anything when you first began your writing career, what would you say?
Me now to me then: You know that three story mansion overlooking the Pacific Ocean you keep telling everyone you’ll get? The one with the on site security team, a drool-worthy garage of cars, and everything you’ve ever wanted at the tips of your fingers? Sweetie, *laughing* dreams are wonderful to have!

Laptop or pen and ink? What are your ‘must-haves’ when writing?
Both. I need both, just like I need two cups of coffee to wake me up every day, lol! I have my laptop and my netbook. My laptop is where I do most of my research and writing. My netbook is used solely for writing when I’m away from home. I have a collection of Composition notebooks. Every time I start a new story, I buy a new set of pens and break in the binding on a new notebook. I jot down plot ideas, scenes, chapters, half a story. Whatever feels like going on paper goes on paper. The scenes I decide to use in my story are transferred onto the laptop later.

Who are your favorite authors? Who would you say influenced you the most?
Some of my favorite authors are Karen Marie Moning, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Christine Feehan, Kresley Cole, Heather Graham and Dean Koontz, as well as many more. In my younger years, I’d have to say R.L. Stine, Christopher Pike and L.J. Smith influenced me the most. L.J. Smith’s work opened my eyes to paranormal more than anyone else, and I embraced it. Today, Karen Marie Moning and Sherrilyn Kenyon are two of my biggest influences.

What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?
I’m a shy person until I get to know you  I blush when I write my love scenes. I’ve had many friends tell me I’m modest, but it’s part of who I am and I don‘t want to change that. I cheered in the Pro-Bowl in Hawaii twice. I danced in the Macy’s Day Parade in New York. And through this all, I’m still an introverted, conservative twenty-something, lol!

For Fun:
What is your Prom story?
Oh my. What would you say if I told you I never went to my proms? The only year I wasn’t asked was my Senior year, but I turned down every offer before, and decided not to go my Senior year. At the time, money was tight and I couldn’t justify spending so much between the dresses, shoes, hair, makeup, transportation, odds and ends, and then the ticket to prom itself.

Favorite Mother’s Day memory?
I’m not sure, to be honest with you. I cherish every day with my son. I’m thankful for every day I have with my mother. It may sound silly, but we don’t really treat Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day like an exceptional day. I’m a believer that every day is just as special, just as important, as the one before and the one after. I will always be a mother, and I’m blessed to take part in every aspect of my son’s life on a daily basis.

If you have children, does the end of school signal loss of writing time for you?
The end of school mean more time split up between summer activities, but since I do the majority of my writing at night, I usually don’t lose the time.

Thank you for being here today! Please tell us where we can find your books.
I had a great time! Thank you again!

You can find my books at Siren-BookStrand, Pink Petal Books , my website,,, All Romance Ebooks, and other online distributors.

Destined Desires
For a century, Rihanna lived with the brutal memories of her soul mate's murder. Now he's back and he's stolen her heart all over again. The only problem: He's engaged to another woman, and Rihanna refuses to come between them.
Bryce Hampton is a haunted man. From early childhood, a mysteriously beautiful woman has plagued his dreams and caused the unusual scar on his hand to burn. After a momentary encounter with his dream angel in a nightclub, he is determined to find her.
The night Rihanna steps back into Bryce's life five months later, he knows he will never let her go again. But a new threat rises from the ashes of the old, more destructive and deadly than before. Can rekindled love keep Rihanna and Bryce alive?

His hand rested on her shoulder. Her back stiffened and her breaths, however poor they might have been, ceased. The strength in his fingers sent
shockwaves of heat and sorrow through her body but pumped hope into her

“If I make you so nervous, I’ll leave. I didn’t mean to scare you by
stopping by. Really,” Bryce said. The mug quaked in Rihanna’s fingers,
spilling boiling water down the delicate flesh of her hand. She dropped the
mug on the counter the same instant Bryce grabbed her injured hand and
cradled it between his own. She tried to pull away, but the concern in his
eyes and regret on his face held her paralyzed. He moved her to the sink and
held her scalded hand beneath a stream of cold water.

“It shall be healed in a moment’s time,” Rihanna said in a hushed tone.

“This is my fault. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to startle you.”

“’Tis fine. I assure you.” Rihanna drew her hand from beneath the water
and held it up for him to see. Where a bright red stain marred her porcelain
skin moments before, one would never suspect hot water touched her now.
Bryce drew her hand closer to his face, his thumb brushing over the back of
her hand. He turned it over.

Rihanna’s eyes widened. Bryce’s fingers tightened on her hand before
she could snatch it away from his probing eyes. She watched in fear as he
turned over his own hand and examined the mark she knew resided on the
flesh of his palm.

“You have a mark, just like mine.”

“’Tis a mere coincidence.”

“And your eyes? Your ears? You? Haunting my mind from boyhood?”


“Where are you from, Rihanna? Who are you?”

“No one.”

Bryce’s gaze shifted from their identical marks to her gaze. His hand
lifted to her face and held her chin in a tender grip.

“Can you look me in the eye and tell me, honestly, this is all

Rihanna recognized the muddle of her thoughts, the ferocious pounding
of her heart and drying of her mouth. She teetered on the brink of panic. If
he did not leave, she would suffer guilt, knowing she came between his
fiancée and her happiness. Guilt. Oh, by all that was Fae, why must it be
guilt? Because his murder sprouted from the foul depths of jealousy? To
know she would, indeed, be the cause for pain in another’s life?

“You’re not breathing well. Are you okay? Should I get you
something?” Bryce asked. The sincere concern melting along the streams of
his deep voice swelled her throat shut from any breath. His fingers brushed
back from her chin, over her cheek, along the length of her ear, and into her

“I think you best leave.” Her suggestion came out as meek as she felt.
Her voice held no strength in suggestion. She swallowed and added, just as
hoarse, “You have a woman. You need not bother with me.”

“Hmm. In my dreams, you’re always so happy. Jubilant. You don’t
seem to have a care in the world. In my dreams, I remember coming home to
you and you welcoming me with the most enormous hug and…kiss. Here,
standing before me, I see nothing but a woman tortured by pain, an
overwhelming sorrow.”

“Times of past are not worth dwelling upon.”

“They’re dreams,” Bryce assured gently. Rihanna’s eyes glanced
between his own, unable to stop his fingers in her hair or his hand creeping
to her waist. Her feet were as planted as a flimsy weed on tile and took little
effort from him to walk her a step closer.

“Truths,” she gasped.

“I don’t understand how that’s possible.” His voice deepened, thickened
with a tinge more husk than a moment before. Rihanna watched the clear
greens of his eyes cloud. She slipped a hand to his chest, over his pulsating

“I would expect no less,” she murmured, pushing herself from his
proposed embrace. She spun and managed two steps before Bryce’s arm
shot out, his fingers gripping the counter and trapping her. Rihanna shoved
at him and tried to duck beneath his arm. “Dear goddess, you must leave.
Never should you have come.”

“Why are you so nervous? I came innocent enough, bearing coffee and
hopes of a friendly night—”

“As innocent as your intentions may have proven prior to you crossing
through that door, I cannot bear the weight of seeing you so close when you
are still so far away.”

“Rihanna, please. Can’t you just explain this to me?”

Rihanna shook her head, forcing his fingers from the counter and
throwing his arm aside. She blinked back tears, stumbling away from him.
She thumbed the stone on her ring, thumbed it desperately. Use it. Sift back
home. Leave him.


She didn’t want to leave him. She never wanted to leave him. But this!
His persistence peeled mercilessly at her faltering resolve just as much as it
broke apart her heart.

In a feverish effort to frighten him into leaving, she dove into the only
topic he seemed curious about.

“Have you seen it happen? In your dreams?” Rihanna asked quickly.

Bryce’s shoulders straightened as his attention focused even more acutely
on her. She rushed on, taking advantage of his bafflement. “You’re
murdered in your dream. You realize naught when you wake. You are
murdered. Have you experienced their wrath? Their jealousy upon leave of
the cabin? They tricked you to come out that eve, the eve they ambushed
you on the dirt road into town. Sweet goddess, they were brutal…” Rihanna
could not fight the tears any longer as they trailed down her cheeks. Bryce
made a move to wipe them away, but she shuffled back, out of reach. “Do
you recall a name in your dream? Your name?” Bryce’s brow creased.


“How…how do you know? How do you know what I’ve dreamed?” he

“They are truths. Your dreams are memories. The mark on your hand is
a scar from a time long passed. And now you must leave before my brother
returns,” Rihanna threatened, throwing a paranoid glance over her shoulder
for effect. Dear goddess. Had she just lied? To the very man who held her

“Are you telling me I lived before? In another time? And you were there
with me?” he asked quietly. Rihanna couldn’t find the strength to answer
him. In fact, her voice fled her completely. Bryce stepped toward her. She
took another step back. “You are the love of my life in those dreams. God, I
lived every moment for you. My days never began until you were with me. I
couldn’t breathe without you. When I saw you at the club, I couldn’t believe
my eyes. And since, I’ve been counting the days, the weeks, the months,
hoping you would come back. I had myself believing it was all a
coincidence, fate turning a cruel hand on me.”

“There is reason behind every occurrence in one’s life. Coincidences do
not exist.”

“When I arrived, you explained everything away as coincidence,” Bryce
pointed out.

Rihanna felt like a trapped animal the moment her back hit the wall. She
broke to the left. Bryce’s arms wrapped around her waist, pulling her to him,
and halting her escape. His brazen movement seared her blood with heat.
She felt him, his warmth, his strength, the shape of his muscular arms, the
curve of his chest. She fought to free herself from the torment, from the trial
to uphold her dignity and not step between a committed pair.

“Why are you fighting me? Why the sadness?” he whispered against her
ear. His scorching breath and his restrained embrace made her knees buckle.
Without him, she would fall.

Without him, she would die.

His nose brushed her temple. “Please, Rihanna, tell me who you are.
Who you are to me? Who am I? Since I saw you, I’ve wanted no one more
than you. I’ve been mad with desperation, praying to God you’d come back
to me. I’ve been out every night, searching every damn bar and every damn
club. I can’t begin to tell you how much of a fool I’ve been. But it’s all
worth it because here you are, real. Not a dream or a story. You’re here,
with me.”

“Mo anam cara,” Rihanna breathed. Her fragile heart couldn’t bear this
much longer. When he turned her to face him, lifting her chin so their gazes
met, she lost the last of her remaining willpower.

“Soul mate,” he translated quietly. “Anam cara.”

The Gala Lover, coming soon from Pink Petal Books
Shadow Hunter,
Talaenian Fae series, Forbidden Heart and Destined Desires,
Kara's Website

Monday, May 24, 2010

Recommended Read:)

I was able to do some reading over the weekend and thought I'd share these excellent books with you:)

London's Haute Ton calls her Miss Temptation. But Elizabeth Grayson can't be bothered by society's diversions while seeking justice for her murdered sister. She is a woman on a dangerous mission. Now is not the time for mindless social engagements or courtships from men she has no intention of marrying. However, Christian Delaford is no ordinary man. He stirs her like no one she has ever met before. His eyes speak of sin and tangled sheets. Of decadent nights spent in his arms. Far too diverting for her peace of mind.

Christian Delaford, the Duke of Haverton, must be married by midnight of his birthday or forfeit his heritage to a distant relation. After years of living a hedonistic life in the Orient, the thought of binding himself forever to an insipid English Miss fairly curls his toes. London's current 'diamond of the first water', however, changes his mind. In Elizabeth, he finds a bold and daring woman who harbors a terrifying secret. He vows to chase Miss Temptation, to the ends of the earth if needs be, and save her from the forces that would tear them both apart.

Art professor Seth Granger has two problems—an absentee life drawing models and a case of unrequited lust. Luckily his troubles have the same answer—his colleague, Dr. Callie Sullivan.

The trick will be getting her out of her clothes and into his studio…and hopefully into his bed. However, she's intent on keeping her mind on her art and ignoring him. Now he just needs to convince her she should be his body of art.

For centuries, there have been legends of Vampires—the fault of one careless dragon. But humans only know part of the story. Walking amongst us are Dragons—Shape-shifters who feed on blood.

Reluctant Dragon Elder Janos Aventech’s vacation in New York is about to come to an abrupt end. Riding on the subway, he stumbles across a Dragon mate—one of the few human women with whom his people can unite and be truly happy. And his people’s enemies are out to get her. As his attraction to this woman grows, he knows he must find her mate and see her safely into that man’s arms. It’s destined. But as every minute passes in her company, Janos begins to see he’ll never willingly let her go, mate or not.

If only she were his mate…

On the subway, Scarlett couldn’t stop staring at him—then he turned crazy. When he essentially kidnaps her off the train, she knows she should be irate and terrified. Instead, she finds her initial attraction growing. But what’s all this stuff he’s spouting about mates and enemies? She only wants to return to her life, not get caught in the middle of a war. But it’s too late for that. She’s destined for a Dragon’s bed, and in Janos’ arms, she can only hope it’s his.

All three of these are available at Resplendence Publishing. Go pick up your copy today!

Saying Goodbye...
Today is also going to be a sad day around here: We're finally going to say goodbye to my beloved Black Lab, Lucky. The bladder issue continues, and she's 13 years old and has had a good spoiled life with us the past ten years. I'll probably give her a tribute on Wednesday.

It's been rescheduled for tomorrow. We have one more day with her.

Cleaning Goals for Today:
-Vacuum all floors
-Woodwork and cabinets in the kitchen

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Saturday's Stupid Saying

I sat cringing before MGM's Technicolor production...which displays no trace of imagination, good taste, or ingenuity...I say it's a stinkeroo.

film critic Russell Maloney in Thje New Yorder, reviewing The Wizard of Oz in 1939

I think history has proven him otherwise...

Thunderstorms and a tornado warning rolled through here yesterday afternoon. Fortunately, the only tornado spotted was two hours west of here, and we didn't even get any hail. Just two inches of rain in about an hour. The roof leaked during the hard rain, but only filled one-fourth of the bucket.

The good news is, the next week is going to be awesome! Highs in the 80's, which means fantastic weather not only for my son's graduation on Friday, but his class trip to Holiday World on Thursday (there's a new water coaster called the Wildebeast), the party on Saturday, and the Indy 500 on Sunday. Time to break out the shorts again!

Goals for Today:
-Finish the living room
-Wipe down the woodwork in office
-De-clutter the damn shelves!

Next week is 'crunch week'. I'll have to do the kitchen, bathroom, and hallway. See....if I hadn't procrastinated, it would have been 'maintenance week'...Baaaaad Molly.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Flashback Friday: Play Ball!

Currently Reading: LOVED One Tasty Night! Recommended Read; this book has wonderful humor in it! I'm now happily reading Regina Carlysle's regency, Chasing Temptation:)

May 2000:
After passing the 'test' with the Girls' Softball games, I felt ready to tackle the Little League schedule. There was only was problem: On Opening Day, we ran out of Pepsi. I thought the secretary/treasurer was in charge of the Pepsi order; he assumed I was doing it! So after getting the number from him, I took a deep breath and called Pepsi, introduced myself, and went about ordering more 20 oz bottles for my concession stand.

I quickly discovered several things:
-Workers don't read. I set up instructions for operating the new cheese machine, and what to do at the end. The process was simple: Put water in opening up to the 'line'; Open #10 can of cheese; place entire can into warmer, on top of the tiny cross-pieces of metal; turn on high for 30 minutes before turning back down to low; insert pump. I can't tell you how many times the contents of the can was dumped into the warmer, ala crock-pot style that first week. Grrr.... And at the end, remove can, place lid on it, put back in fridge. Dump water out and use the water from the hot dog machine to flush the pump. And don't lose the metal cross-piece in the bottom! By the end of the second week, that tiny cross had been lost. Fortunately, one of the coaches rigged another support for me.

-I specified that Concession Reps open up thirty minutes before game time. This should have been a no-brainer; after all, teams are supposed to arrive ahead of time, right? How many people wait until game time to order food? I didn't think it was too much to ask that one person get everything ready an hour before. But apparently 'that's the way it had always been done', and they weren't going to change. I fell into the habit of getting everything started by myself, but this quickly grew old after a week. I did have some reps who understood the issue and did what I asked. But others? Forget it...

-Nobody liked to restock the Pepsi cooler. My arm muscles were well-developed after a month of lifting the cases; shuffling them around the storage area; and restocking every night.

-My SU got tired of me always being at the ball field. "You're leaving again?" was frequently heard after the kids' homework was checked, or after the baths completed. Thankfully, he did help me clean the hot dog machine, the cheese machine and pump, and actually enjoyed the weekly or bi-weekly trips to Sam's Club. If you go at the right time, you can literally eat your way through the store:)

-By the end of the month, I was tired of micro-managing everything and gave up on the Opening issue. But whenever I worked the games or practices, people thanked me for opening up early. I also apologized to the last Concession Manager for doing everything wrong during my year as Rep.

-I also thoroughly enjoyed the bookkeeping aspect...until I noticed after I added a line to the spreadsheet, the new 'total' hadn't changed in over six days! Talk about disaster...fortunately, I'd written out everything in longhand before I'd entered it into the computer, so it was easy to change.

The Indy 500 time trials were rainy that year. I signed up to work the Opening Day, but spent most of my time sitting behind my beer cart in chilly wet weather. I only sold a few beers, but our hot chocolate and coffee sold well.

Race day, K, age six, went with me and enjoyed himself. Juan Montoya won that year.

Rare Opportunity:
Last night just as I was getting ready to leave for dance class, my friend D called and invited me to go to the movies with her. I asked the SU if he minded fixing dinner so I could go, and got the okay. We went to see Letters To Juliet, and it was the first time since (I think!) 1996 I've seen a movie in a theatre with actual friends, not members of my family! The movie was enjoyable; predictable, but a tear-jerker, and afterward we went to Denny's for coffee. I got home around 10pm and discovered that instead of cooking, the boys went our local Amish buffet and feasted on BBQ ribs. S was in a snit and opted to stay home.

I have got to do this more often! I miss being out with 'the girls':)

TGIF! Have a good weekend:)

Goals for Today:
(no, your eyes are NOT deceiving you; I only washed the bedding yesterday...told you I need Merry Maids!)
-Wash S's BRM curtains Check. (See? I did do something today!)
-Wash down baseboards along SE corner
-De-clutter 'office' shelves

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thursday Ramble...

Currently Reading: Finished Curses last night, and OMG! This is making a serious bid to be my favorite CSP book, replacing Djinni and the Geek and Dragon In The System. Maybe I'll just make it a 3-way tie...Definite Recommended Read!!!!! Do not pass Go; go directly to The Wild Rose Press and get this book:) Also read Ashley Ladd's Simon Says, and began Amber Skyze's One Tasty Night. OMG...This story has some hilarious moments! I'm LOVING it! I'm also going to have to reread Ashley's; I was half asleep while reading, and was more interested in the ending than the details. Sorry Ash...I promise to reread at a later date!

Goals for Today:
(yes, I'm a slacker.... I'm 1/3 through this room!)
-Wash S's BRM curtains
-Wash down baseboards along SE corner
-De-clutter 'office' shelves
-Wash K's bedding. Youngling had an accident at 3am. Fun, fun... Check.

Had a terrific day yesterday! I pitched a Kenzie story to a publishing loop I joined last month, and within an hour had heard from an interested publisher:) Sent it off, and now am playing the waiting game again...but that's okay. This gives me time to polish the thing, as I found a few minor POV issues when I read it this afternoon. I haven't touched this wip since 2007. I'll let you know when I hear any news.

As you can tell, my cleaning motivation is SHOT, but hopefully today will be better. Everyone is thrilled to no longer be tripping over the toddler's toys:) Now if I can just get the SU to move some of his stuff, so I can put some candles out...

Visited with a neighbor, who'd bought a Kindle. I took my Sony over and we compared. Discovered I'm not on Kindle, but Reg, Brynn, and Kelly are! Silly me...forgot to search for my own name instead of just Kenzie's!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Terrific Tuesday with Lyn Armstrong:)

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us about your latest release.
Hi Molly, thank you for having me here. My name is Lyn Armstrong and I’m an Aussie author living in Florida. I write historical erotic romance with paranormal elements. So there is something for everyone. My latest release is “Witch Hunter”—the fifth and last book in the Celtic series. You can read it with the Celtic series, starting with “The Last Celtic Witch”, or by itself. I loved writing Witch Hunter as I was able to research the history and prosecution of witches in Scotland. Their stories moved me so much, I dedicated “Witch Hunter” to all the innocent people accused of witchcraft, tortured and sentenced to death. I added real names of those who went through witch trials in 16th century Edinburgh to give the story a sense of dark reality.
Witch Hunter has received the Reviewers Recommend Award from Coffee Times Romance along with five star reviews.

Entwined Fates…Forbidden Love

Commissioned as an Inquisitor, Lord Lachlan Fairbairn is a skilled Witch Hunter feared throughout Scotland. When King James VI sent him to investigate a noble lady with wild golden hair and an untamed spirit, his instincts warns she is guilty of witchcraft. With mystery and intrigue surrounding the beautiful lass, he could not resist her luring charm beneath her protected heart. Torn between his forbidden desires and royal duty, can he make the impossible decision?

Outcast from her clan, Lady Rhiannon Campbell struggles with conflicting powers. Half good witch and half evil sorceress, she battles to control the darkness within for fear of plunging Scotland into chaos and death. With time working against Rhiannon, she has to rid herself of the seductive Inquisitor or face the horrific torture of the King’s dungeons. Can she endure a broken heart and a gruesome death to save her family? Or will she protect her enchanted secret and force herself to slay…the Witch Hunter?

I hope you all enjoy reading Witch Hunter as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Have you ever had an idea for a story which scared you after you began writing it?
I haven’t written a story which scared me, but the research for Witch Hunter haunted my dreams. I can’t imagine how a person dealt with such gruesome torture in Scotland dungeons.

Have you incorporated actual events from your own life into your books?
I get a lot of people asking me if any of the love scenes were based in reality. Unfortunately, very few are. I guess that is why I have a great imagination. Tee Hee.

How much research do you do? Do you research first and then write, or do you write first, then research as needed?
I do heaps of research. Especially since all my novels are set in history. I try to be authentic to my characters. Sometimes, researching a book will take longer than writing the book itself. I don’t mind. I love history and its people. Why they did the things they did, why they dressed in those clothes and had certain beliefs that didn’t always make a lot of sense. It’s like unraveling a time-old mystery.

Is there any message you want readers to take from reading your work?
Good question. I would like the reader to walk away with a little more knowledge on how people lived in history and be thorough engrossed with the fantasy of an era gone by. As well as enjoying the love scenes. It’s awesome when a book spices up your life and makes you feel alive.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? And have you ever had a story take on a life of its own?
I am both. LOL. Sometimes I plot my story, then sit down to write. Other times I just sit down at the computer with an idea I got from a dream and start typing, allowing the characters to speak to me. However, there is one thing I do every time. I find a picture of my characters on the internet or magazine and stick them up on the wall next to my computer. These pictures come to life as real people with real issues, conflicts, inner demons, hopes and dreams. If I am stuck for dialogue, I would look at my picture and ask myself, what would this person say or do in this situation. And the answer would come instantly.

How long did it take for you to be published?
I was writing and learning the craft full time for four years before Resplendence Publishing offered a contract for The Last Celtic Witch. I had written three manuscripts before The Last Celtic Witch. However, those “practice” manuscripts will never see the light of day. LOL.
There is a funny story on how I was “discovered”.

I met the Resplendence Publishing editors in a bar at a writers conference and I didn’t know who there were. A few people in the group started to talk about my “love scenes” and how much they enjoyed reading them. I nodded my head at them with resignation and said, “From your lips to the editors’ ears.”

Little did I know, those editors were sitting right next to me. LOL. They asked me about my manuscripts. I thought I was talking to just another author until one of them gave me their business card and asked me to submit. I did and a week later, they called and offered me a contract.

If you could go back and tell yourself anything when you first began your writing career, what would you say?
Good question. I wouldn’t change a thing, because every lesson I learned helped me to be a better author. I guess I would say never give up hope no matter how dark it seems. Just keep writing and you will become better with each manuscript. It’s inevitable.

Laptop or pen and ink? What are your ‘must-haves’ when writing?
I do both. I use pen and paper to plot. I use the computer to write, revise and edit. When I cannot edit anymore and I feel I am about to pull my hair out, I print the manuscript on recycled paper, grab a red pen and re-edit the hard copy.

Who are your favorite authors? Who would you say influenced you the most?
My favorite authors tend to change a lot. LOL. In the beginning, I was a huge Joanna Lindsey fan for historicals. I also love Sherrilyn Kenyon, Angela Knight, Connie Mason, Lyn Armstrong (lol, just seeing you were paying attention). But I would say an author who influenced me greatly was Nancy Friday. She doesn’t really write fiction, but collates erotic fantasies from women and men. Her books really opened my mind to writing erotic romance novels. She taught me it is not only okay to be sexual, but it is very normal to have a freaky imagination. LOL.

Thank you for being here today! Please tell us where we can find your books.
Thank you for having me, Molly. ;0)

You can find the Celtic series on ebooks at Resplendence Publishing or on print at

The Celtic Series Titles:

The Last Celtic Witch
The Celtic Witch & the Sorcerer
Heart of a Warlock
Lady of the Mountain
Witch Hunter

Daughters of Odin (Released July 6th, 2010 at Resplendence)

For more information on titles and Lyn Armstrong, go to my website.

Witch Hunter

Entwined Fates…Forbidden Love

Commissioned as an Inquisitor, Lord Lachlan Fairbairn is a skilled Witch Hunter feared throughout Scotland. When King James VI sent him to investigate a noble lady with wild golden hair and an untamed spirit, his instincts warns she is guilty of witchcraft. With mystery and intrigue surrounding the beautiful lass, he could not resist her luring charm beneath her protected heart. Torn between his forbidden desires and royal duty, can he make the impossible decision?

Outcast from her clan, Lady Rhiannon Campbell struggles with conflicting powers. Half good witch and half evil sorceress, she battles to control the darkness within for fear of plunging Scotland into chaos and death. With time working against Rhiannon, she has to rid herself of the seductive Inquisitor or face the horrific torture of the King’s dungeons. Can she endure a broken heart and a gruesome death to save her family? Or will she protect her enchanted secret and force herself to slay…the Witch Hunter?

Excerpt for Witch Hunter

Rhiannon spent the eve sitting on cold stones in the king’s dank dungeon, thinking about all things she wished she could change. If she had a chance, she would tell her mother, father and the rest of her family that she loved them. She would apologize to Lachlan for being the cause of his downfall. She never wanted him to be in the middle of the trial, which was why she trapped him in the mountain.

She rubbed her hot hands on her thighs. Since the middle of the eve, her palms constantly burned. There was not much time left before the sun rose and all goodness left her soul. How could she face the look of fear from Lachlan when the hex took effect? If only she were executed yesterday.

A nervous giggle erupted from her mouth. To think she was wishing in her last moments to die earlier.

The door opened, and the repulsive lanky Inquisitor pulled her to her feet. “I can help you escape,” Grigor offered.

Rhiannon stared at him, her heart leaping to throat.

“If you promise to use your powers to my benefit, we can work out an accord.” Grigor cupped her breasts and she shivered.

She spat in his face. “I would rather die.”

He gripped her arm and pulled her up against him, his teeth clenching. “Then I will torch you myself.”

Grigor dragged her along the cavernous hallway. For once, the Inquisitor was silent which terrified her more than his threats.

He placed her in the same cart she took to Tolbooth yesterday. “Where is Lord Lachlan?” she asked.

“You will see him soon enough,” Grigor replied in a scathing tone and sat beside the driver.

Tilting her head up, Rhiannon observed the eve’s fading stars, appreciating the last chance of seeing the sky’s dark beauty. Conflicting emotions tore at her heart. Although she was afraid to burn on the stake, if the dawn came before she died, everyone in Edinburgh was in danger of the evil that simmered beneath.

The cart rumbled out the castle gates and she willed the horse to trot faster.

Perhaps the sorceress would not be up this early.

Rhiannon hopes were dashed when she arrived at the hill outside the castle. Upon a high white horse sat the sorceress in a red gown and hat, her bosom almost spilling out of the exquisite dress. On a black steed next to Torella sat the king, appearing bored and impatient.

As soon as the crowd saw her, they shouted curses. The noise was so loud she wanted to cover her ears, but her bound wrists could not reach far enough. She glared at the hundreds of people who eagerly woke early to witness another witch burning.

The cart halted and Grigor roughly escorted her up the nearest scaffold of four.

Lachlan stood against one of the posts on the platform next to her. His tunic hung open at his sides, his muscled back exposed to the vicious mob.

His head hung low; he appeared defeated.

She swallowed past the lump in her throat.

A heavy-set soldier near Lachlan cracked a whip into the air and the crowd replied in awe, their eyes glistening with blood lust. The man picked up another whip near his feet and held it high for everyone’s pleasure. The claw-like pincers at the end of the whip held bloodstains. Every lash of the cat’s paw would tear Lachlan’s skin like a knife through butter until it reached the bone.

Damn the sorceress for blocking her powers. She could have saved Lachlan from feeling the pain. Allow his soul to escape into a world of bliss.

Grigor bound her to a post, and she peeked below at the pile of dry timber. Her heart felt like it was going to pound out of her chest. Sweat poured down the sides of her face. Her breathing increased.

“I pray you do not burn too fast, witch,” Grigor taunted and left the scaffold. He snatched a fire sconce from one of the guards and waited nearby, his eyes burning with impatience.

“Rhiannon,” Lachlan called to her above the din and she turned her head. “Try to escape if you can.”

She shook her head. “I cannot.” Bile rose in her throat and she swallowed the acidic taste.

Something was happening to her beyond just fear. Her body seemed to blaze from within.

Rhiannon looked at the sorceress, and she held a sinister smile. Torella’s face turned to the east. She was waiting for the sun, for the hex to take place. She whispered into the king’s ear.

King James ordered, “Whip the traitor!”

“Nae,” Rhiannon screamed but it was lost in the mob’s cheers.

The soldier swung his arm to gain momentum then cracked the whip against Lachlan’s back. He squeezed his eyes shut, his body spasm against the pain, but he did not cry out.
Rhiannon struggled against her binds. She had to stop this.

The cat’s claw flicked through the air and tore his skin again. Blood dripped down his legs. The soldier flicked the pieces of flesh from the pincers and whipped him again and again.

“Stop it!” Rhiannon shouted at the sorceress. But she shrugged her shoulders and pointed to the east.

A reddish-orange glow colored the morning sky. The sun would soon appear over the mountains.

“I am a powerful witch!” she shouted as loud as she could.

The crowd hushed down to a whisper, their attention on her.

“If you do not leave this man be, you will all be cursed for the rest of your days,” she warned.

“Nae, Rhiannon,” Lachlan groaned.

The crowd’s faces changed from hatred to panic. They turned to the king.

His Majesty whispered into the sorceress’ ear and she nodded. “Burn the witch!” he ordered.

A mixture of terror and relief filled her being. She did not want to die, but could not allow the hex to darken the world.

Grigor pushed the other guards away and walked forward. Holding the fire sconce in the air, he stared at her with a huge grin on his face. He brought the flame down in an arc, and the timber easily caught fire. The Inquisitor practically danced around her scaffold, adding fire to the pile.
Her steady composure collapsed with the horror of a painful death. The crackling of the flames grew louder, drowning out the noise of the mob. Even Lachlan’s pleas for mercy for her seemed like a whisper.

The spot on her forehead seared the skin, while her insides burned even though the flames had not reached her flesh. She closed her eyes against the sting of smoke, the smell of wood clogging her lungs.

Suddenly, a sense of peace overcame her being. Her limbs instantly cooled and her skin prickled. The beat of her heart and her intake of breath slowed in pace.

She was ready for death.

A piercing light shone from beyond her eyelids and she opened her eyes.

Yellow beams of sunlight shot over the mountain range.

WITCH HUNTER – available on ebook at Resplendence or on print at Amazon.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Reality Show Wrap-Up

Amazing Race:
I've only watched this show twice; once when Rob and Amber from Survivor were on it (I think they came in 2nd or third) and this past season, when Big Brother's Jeff and Jordan participated.

I actually find this show sometimes tedious to watch, because instead of competing in challenges simultaneously, you watch it over and over and over with each team. This is why I only tune in occasionally! Initially, I was rooting for Jeff and Jordan, but after the 1st episode I watched (halfway through, I think), it was painfully clear that only divine intervention was going to help them. And sure enough, two episodes later they were gone (I missed it). So then I was torn between the Jeff and Cord, Louis and Michael, Dan and Jordan, and Brent and Caite. I missed the episode where Louis and Michael were eliminated, and cheered Dan and Jordan as they cleverly jumped into the lead by persuading the flight attendant to bump them to 1st class on the airplane, enabling them to grab the 1st cab and not look back as they ran the final leg. Jeff and Cord were close behind, but Brent and Caite lucked out with a cab driver who could barely speak English and didn't know how to get to the park near the Golden Gate Bridge. I was NOT proud of Caite's childish behavior in the cab as she cussed the poor guy out.

Steph and Carol let their true colors show at the finish line. Still sore about being U-turned by Brent and Caite, they still demanded an apology. They didn't get one, nor did they really deserve one! It's a GAME, people! Get over yourselves.

Sandra won last night!! I was ticked when Rupert and Co failed to believe Sandra whenever she tried to rally everyone behind her to vote off Russell. And that dumb move of JT...earning his the Dumbest Move In Survivor History...rightly earned.

And Russell needs a week at a spa, to chill out and get over his sour grape attitude. Rob had him pegged; he played to get to the END, not to WIN. He's good at manipulation; good at strategy. But LOUSY at maintaining relationships, and voting friends off in a cheerful manner. He needs to go back and watch past episodes to get a clue.

And he even griped about it this morning on the Early Show! He's just showing what a big baby he is.

Celebrity Apprentice:
Still on my DVR, so I have no idea who's won. Don't tell me; I'll report it the day after I watch it. I'm torn between Holly, Brett, and Sharon.

Goals for Today: (yes, I slacked off last week. I solemnly promise to do this room this week!)
-Wash S's BRM curtains
-Wash down baseboards along SE corner
-De-clutter W's toy area. Check.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Saturday's Stupid Saying

Newlywed Game host Bob Eubanks:
What was the first thing you said to your husband on your wedding night?

Female contestant: Uh, gosh that's a hard one. Oh, wait, I don't mean THAT!

Slacked off this week due to being in pain and catching up on my DVR'd shows: L&O are slowly being dwindled to one per day; weekly One Tree Hill, The Celebrity Apprentice, Amazing Race finale, 90210, and last weekend I also DVR'd a Deadliest Catch, Best of...series. I finally watched the Eureka episodes, and am down to just the few DC, L&O, and one L&O:SVU episode.

Today I will get to the middle room in my house, and at least get it de-cluttered and vaccuumed! We also have another Eagle Scout Court of Honor to attend this afternoon, in honor of a particular scout whom I championed two years ago (See August 17, 2008 Scouts Got Talent NOT post:)

Have a good weekend! I'm off to take more Advil and drink another cup of coffee.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Flashback Friday: 1990

Currently Reading: Curses by Cindy Spencer Pape. I was pleasantly surprised; I'd expected something different, but I LIKE it:) Obviously, I didn't read the blurb or excerpt very well when she posted it earlier. Sorry Cindy! I'm loving the story, and I think I've figured out one of the 'twists'....I'll keep reading and see if I'm right:) I'm up to Chapter 4.

At my job, I was given a list of tasks to perform with each 'child' (the residents ranged in age from five to sixty years old, and were varying functioning levels), with the higher functioning ones stationed at one end, and the lower ones (including major behavioral problems) at the other. Workers would switch ends every hour, so we had equal time with all residents.

The day I was supposed to start, only two workers showed up, so I was pretty much thrust into it without any formal training. And one co-worker had a tendency to record all the reactions, so when we'd switch, she'd tell me the book was completed for that hour; all I had to do was maintain control of the room.

After a while, I got bored in the lower-functioning room, and started re-doing her stimuli. I spent about five minutes with each resident, trying to coax a different reaction to stories, lotion rubbed on their skin, music, finger plays....anything to keep my own mind active, and not just waiting for someone to be changed or have their behavior redirected. And in May, the State came in to evaluate the facility, and not surprisingly, we didn't pass inspection.

Our QMRP was fired, along with other staff. During the inspection, I didn't know I was being observed as I re-worked the checklist. The people brought in to change things around questioned all of us, and based on their observations, bumped me up to supervisor. When I objected, because many other workers had seniority over me, I was told it was because they had seen me actively working with the kids, not just being a watchdog.

After eight hours of intense training, the kids were divided into eight different groups, and I was relieved to see myself in charge of the highest functioning ones. Unfortunately, this is also the time when The Idiot in my life was showing his true colors, so this particular time was very turbulent.

But that month taught me a valuable lesson: Go the extra mile in whatever job you're given, and take pride in your work. You never know who may be paying attention.

Oh also, Ari Lyendyke won the Indy 500 that year! Woo hoo!

Flashing back to 1983 for a brief moment...On this date, my best friend B and I were pronounced 'people' in the hallway. The encounter went something like this:

B's friend J walks up to us at B's locker.
"Hey,'s the missus?"

(I stand there with my mouth open)
B: "Molly, he's talking to you."

Me: "I'm fine J. Yourself?"

J nods. "And how are the kids?"

I shoot a look at B, who's laughing. "They're just fine! They miss their Uncle J. When are you coming over?"

"I'll be over after practice...." He walks away.

B slams his locker shut and we head in the opposite direction.

"Okay; clue me in. When did we get married?"

B: "Last year. You don't remember? Geez, Mol..."

M: "And we have how many kids?"

B: "I don't know; you had 'em!"

We arrive at my classroom; he winks at me and continues on.

One hour later...
B meets me at my locker. J arrives just as I slam the door shut.

"Hey you two; wait up a sec. By the power invested in me, I now pronounce you 'people'. B, kiss your bride!"

Several people started cheering. I ducked under B's arm and headed off to my next class, totally embarrassed!

We actually carried this joke until I became 'engaged' to my AF officer three years later:)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

May Pictures

W, helping neighbor load the lawn mowers onto trailer:)

2010 Confirmation class of our old parish. Had we not moved, S would have been in this picture. The majority of these kids were in her 1st Communion class.

M (top row, red shirt) is the son of our good friends R & J. His parents are also W's godparents.

I haven't seen many of these kids in over three years; it's hard to believe they look so grown up!

We were at St. Agnes Church in Nashville, IN. Beautiful little church on a hill, and tucked into the woods:)

To the left, in white, is my friend D;
Center, in blue, is J, R, my SU, W, and S (hiding behind her little brother).

Between my SU and S is K's friend A, who has grown into a lovely young woman. She'll be attending IUPUI next year. Her little brother was also being confirmed.

M, doing the first reading. I didn't get a good picture of he and K receiving the Bishop's blessing; it was rather crowded.

I also walked up to our priest before the service and asked, "Is it appropriate to hug your favorite priest?"

Fr. J opened his arms and said, "Of course!"

Since I'm not Catholic, I can't receive Communion, but I did go forward for his blessing. Our priest down here doesn't do that.

Afterwards, R & J treated us to a wonderful meal at the Holy Cow restaurant:)

Here are the boys acting goofy.

Then M attempted to pick up K! Ummm...I think he needs a little more help...

True or False?
1) I'm an only child Nope; I have a younger sister.
2) I married right out of high school Nope; went on to college and married at age 25.
3) I've won a Grammy and an Oscar In my dreams, maybe....
4) I was named after The Unsinkable Molly Brown Partially true; my parents used to tease me about it.
5) I once slam-dunked a basketball TRUE! I had a little help from a 6'7" basketball player in the summer of 1986:) Dolas, I'll always be thankful!
6) I'm a Coke gal Nope. It takes me 90 minutes to drink a Pepsi, and I once managed to drink nearly a can of Coke in 8 hours. I'm strictly a Pepsi gal...unless it has rum in it. Then I'll drink it in about an hour or less, if the mix is just right:)
7) I can run a mile in 8 minutes
Not anymore; I could do this in jr. high and high school, but now I'm good if I can WALK a mile in ten minutes...

So how did you do?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Rainy Wednesday

Goals for Today:
-Wash S's BRM curtains
-Wash down baseboards along SE corner
-De-clutter W's toy area. He stayed home with the stomach flu yesterday, so didn't get a whole lot accomplished!

Currently Reading: Bad Conduct by Ashley Ladd. Discovered I never uploaded Cindy's books to the e-reader. Bad Molly....Thoroughly enjoyed Golden Opportunity! Recommended Read:) Print-wise, I'm slowly working my way through Irving's Trying To Save Piggy Sneed. This is part memoir, part short story collection.

Made the fatal mistake of reading Anny's blog post out loud. Now he's chosen to lord it over my head that he was right and I've been wrong the past year. Yes, I'm griping.

Our deal was, if I didn't make a profit from the books at the end of 2008, I would go back to writing in my spare time and go get a job. Well, I not only made a tiny profit from Love Finds A Way, but received my first contract from Freya's Bower. Didn't cost me anything but early promo materials, but yes, I've sold several copies and am receiving small checks in the mail. But since it's only amounted to 'pin money', he's concluded my time could be better spent elsewhere.

Time to win the lottery; open up my own shop; and keep writing! Besides; if I worked forty hours a week outside the home, he'd be griping about being left home alone all day long. So what the hell does he want? Don't answer that.

Come back tomorrow; I promise I'll post some cheery pictures!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Terrific Tuesday with Danielle Thorne:)

Welcome! Please introduce yourself and tell us about your latest release.
Hi Molly. Thanks for having me today. Writing from south of Atlanta, I'm an author of historical and contemporary adventures. My current release is TURTLE SOUP, an environmental sweet romance set between Atlanta and the island of St. Thomas. All of my books have sea themes, but TURTLE SOUP is one of my favorites because I have a soft spot for sea turtles.

Have you ever had an idea for a story which scared you after you began writing it?
The only time I'm ever scared when I write a story, is if I don't know where I'm going. I can't write by the seat of my pants like some authors. The story already has to be in my head, and working up an outline helps me to see the waypoints I need to help the plot progress.

Have you incorporated actual events from your own life into your books?
Absolutely. Although I don't base characters on myself, I do use a lot of my experiences to bring stories to life. I've taken dive classes, gone on cruises, and even taken a weekend tour of Savannah, Georgia, to eat at a famous restaurant in order to make everything as realistic as possible.

How much research do you do? Do you research first and then write, or do you write first, then research as needed?
I usually dip my toe into a subject before I begin writing, but I leave major research for my second draft. Getting the story down on paper is the hardest step for me; afterwards I submerge myself in the details and work them into the scenes.

Is there any message you want readers to take from reading your work?
Besides taking my readers on faraway adventures, I hope to inspire others to care a little more about people, animals, and the planet. There is always a romantic subplot in my work, and I strive to keep the romance sweet and refreshing.

Are you a plotter or a pantser? And have you ever had a story take on a life of its own?
As I mentioned, definitely a plotter, but that doesn't mean the story doesn't take some turns that surprise me!

How long did it take for you to be published?
Once I sincerely began submitting my work, it took a little over a year to get my first contract. I have been writing all my life--the journey has been a long one. Now that I am seeing everything I've hoped for come to fruition, I feel that every sacrifice has been worth it.

If you could go back and tell yourself anything when you first began your writing career, what would you say?
Trust yourself. I've never had a hard time taking criticism because I understand I can learn from it. That being said, I do wish I would have been more confident and bold when I first began.

Laptop or pen and ink? What are your ‘must-haves’ when writing?
Both! I must have paper and pencil to draw out plot maps and outline my ideas. When it comes time to write the story, I can't do it without a keyboard. I type faster than I think these days.

Who are your favorite authors? Who would you say influenced you the most?
I would say my writing has been most influenced by Jane Austen and Patrick O'Brian. I love their voices, style, and wit. Right now I am into the PERCY JACKSON AND THE OLYMPIAN series when I'm not reading new releases for review purposes. I have also discovered some new authors I enjoyed this past year: Miss Mae, Linda Swift, Anne Patrick, P.I. Barrington, and many other exciting authors on the rise.

I LOVE the Percy Jackson series!

What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?
I've been asked this before and I'm sure those familiar with me already know—that I have four boys. Growing up with four brothers, it hasn't been a big deal for me to be surrounded by all this bedlam, but some people find it interesting. I couldn't imagine myself with a house full of girls. Just doesn't process.

For Fun:
What is your Prom story?
My parents moved right before my senior year. My prom date was some kind of parental intervention--a set up. Luckily, my date and I were good friends and both survived but I try not to think on those times. Being a teenager was the hardest thing I ever endured, bar none!

Favorite Mother’s Day memory?
All of my memories of Mother's Day blur together. Just good times with my family—a few flowers and rose bushes. It's nice to be appreciated.

If you have children, does the end of school signal loss of writing time for you?

Yes! I write during school hours and then late in the evening when everyone is in bed. It's important to me to balance the free time I have seeing to my duties as a mother and homemaker. I'm not perfect, but I try to make sure that I keep in mind what is most important in life—and that's family.

Thank you for being here today! Please tell us where we can find your books.

Thanks for having me! Guests can find out more about my books (and me), and especially TURTLE SOUP, by visiting my website.

My next release will be out July 1st with Desert Breeze Publishing. Titled BY HEART AND COMPASS, it's a shipwreck adventure for contemporary romance readers. Watch for it!

Sea turtles may be endangered but after an encounter with marine biologist, Jack Brandon, nothing will stop Sara Hart from naming her deli Turtle Soup. When Jack takes a job at the nearby Georgia Aquarium, Sara finds the environmental poster boy at her door, hungry and carrying a chip on his shoulder. Neither thinks the other has what it takes, until a scuba class reveals what lies beneath the surface.

BUY NOW LINK: Click here


Jack rotated and refilled some of the tanks. Guffin gave him a slap on the back. "Lock-up the classroom, will you? I've got to call the front office."

"Sure." Out of the corner of his eye he saw Sara peeling off her wet suit. She was under the shower head in the rinse area, one hand against the green tile to keep her balance.

He couldn't help watching the little wiggle in her hips. The harder she pulled, the longer the rubber stretched as if it were a piece of black gum. He would have laughed out loud if jets of water weren't smoothing her hair down in a wheat curtain against her back.

Her legs were athletic and trim. She needed a tan, his defenses observed. Before he could stop himself he stepped into the shower to help her pull the wetsuit the rest of the way off. He caught her off balance and had to grab her wrist so she didn't fall. Her hand landed squarely on his bare chest, his eyes in the valley between the cups of her dark bikini.

One leg of the wetsuit had flopped to the tiles, while the other was still glued to her calf. She looked down foolishly for a moment as if unsure what to do but their eyes met and she seemed to trade her embarrassment for unease.

The words I'm sorry passed through his mind, but he kissed her instead. Without thinking, he closed his eyes and put his mouth on hers, timidly, in case she bit him. She didn't bite, but she didn't lean into him either. Her lips had a light layer of salt residue that had not rinsed off and he kissed her harder enjoying the scent of her breath that rose up with the steam.

With a jolt the water temperature switched to ice cold and he stumbled back. Sara had not been lost as lost in the moment as he'd thought. "I'm sorry," she said as she screwed the faucet handle off.
She wiped the water off her face and ran her hands over her hair. He moved to put his arms around her again but she stepped back out of reach. "Don't. I'm sorry. I didn't mean that."

Her face was so red it looked like her cheeks could bleed. Humiliation singed Jack's pride. "You didn't mean that?"

"No." She tripped over her wetsuit trying to escape.

He reached for a towel and wordlessly she accepted. Struggling, she pulled the other leg of her wetsuit off at last. He stood on the pool deck waiting for something more.

Of course she didn't mean it. She didn't like him one iota. She would head straight home and tell her little niece everything. There'd be a cookie on the menu tomorrow called Crummy Kiss.

He drew an angry breath but before he could insult her, she stuck her hand out like a traffic cop. "Don't say it."

"Say what?" A cold wave of disgust washed over him. Why had he let himself think she was different? "What makes you think I meant it either?" He thought he saw her eyes water but she quickly wiped her face. He spun on his heel and stalked off before she looked up again.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Thanks Sandra!

The amazing Sandra Cox nominated me for the Creative Blogger Award:)

The rules for the award are simple:
1. Thank the person who gave this to you.
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog.
3. Link to the person who nominated you.
4. Tell up to six outrageous lies about yourself, and at least one
outrageous truth – or – switch it around and tell six outrageous
truths and one outrageous lie.
5. Nominate seven “Creative Writers” who might have fun coming up with
outrageous lies.
6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know you nominated them.

Okay; six lies and one truth...geez...
1) I'm an only child
2) I married right out of high school
3) I've won a Grammy and an Oscar
4) I was named after The Unsinkable Molly Brown
5) I once slam-dunked a basketball
6) I'm a Coke gal
7) I can run a mile in 8 minutes

Think you know me? I'll post the answers on Wednesday.

And since this has already gone around at least once, I don't know who to nominate!

I had a wonderful Mother's Day; I was taken out to lunch after church; my Chinese fortune reads 'You will make a name for yourself in the field of entertainment'; I watched the Eureka Marathon on SyFy. AND they cooked dinner for me and managed to get along without fighting. S even did her dishes and made a special dessert...all gooey and chocolate-y:)

Goals for Today:
-Wash remaining LRM curtains Check.
-Wash down baseboards along SE corner
-D-clutter W's toy area. I highly doubt I'll get to S's shelves until tomorrow...