Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Weird Wednesday...

1. Our weather here is weird. It was spring-like warm today. And rainy. Tomorrow's high will be first thing in the morning, with dropping temps throughout the day. The rain we get overnight is supposed to be torrential.
2. It's only Wednesday. All day, I thought it was Thursday. Now I have a disappoint.
3. We're under a "boil water advisory" here. That's pretty sucky. K4 was terrified to take a shower tonight, because she thought she'd get diseased. I have cases of water, jugs of water, and that was a stupid expense to have to undertake. No, they won't go to waste, but still... At least the store had a very ample supply and the manager was checking it often. I am constantly reminding my family not to drink the water. They forget.
4. My Amaryllis is in bloom. It is so pretty! We have four flowers and a bud so far, and another stalk popped out. It's a beautiful flower and I'm just impressed that we managed to keep it alive for over a year! (The kids got it for us for our anniversary in December last year)
5. I have to give a presentation at work next week. My title "Check yourself before you wreck yourself". Management has approved it. My alternate title is "Whoa, Nelly. Slow the heck down.". I think I should probably work on that, because tomorrow is Thursday (I almost wrote that today is Thursday) and I have to present it on Monday.  Plus I have to get my final draft approved before the meeting.
6. Detox update: 3 pounds down, bitches! Monday pretty much sucked. I ate things I wasn't supposed to (I was so hungry!) and I refused to weigh myself Tuesday. Tuesday I did well, though I fell off of the diet soda wagon in the evening, but not too hard. Today I did well, too. (we're just not going to discuss the diet soda thing anymore, okay? I am trying and I am doing so much better than before) The tea is growing on me, and I am so thirsty! I will continue because the wedding is in 6 months, not 8 months! Yikes! Must rock my mother of the bride dress!!
7. The writing is going pretty good. I have been kind of waylaid tonight. Some events from today have stalled my progress, but I've already met my goal for the month. I am still digging the new story. A whole lot.
8. My refrigerator is haunted. It still makes noises like it's got an icemaker. It doesn't. But we still hear ice dropping and water kicking on to refill. The water isn't even hooked up to it.
9. The cat is crazy. She is in psycho mode tonight. I need to check to see if she got into the catnip,,,
That is all...

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Sunday Recap...

Today was cooking day. I don't know why... because I felt like it, because it's been so long since I've had the chance, because I wanted to...
I slept later than expected (like for ten hours straight), clipped coupons, and headed to the store. I only needed a few things, but ended up spending almost $60. (I saved $10 though)!
1. The homemade coffee creamer was excellent. I added the raspberry puree left over from yesterday's breakfast and it was so much better. (Plus, no chemicals and very little sugar)
2. The breakfast burritos are in the freezer. The kids are excited about them.
3. The avocado chicken salad is on hold due to not ripe avocados. Everything else is ready.
4. I made crockpot cashew chicken for dinner. The recipe needs tweaked, but it was kind of okay. (Everyone else loved it. I was disappointed.) Not sweet enough, not enough liquid, a little too salty (that could be me) though I followed the recipe. I added portabella mushrooms at the end. I should have added the broccoli, too, but there wasn't enough liquid. I'll try it again, but with modifications.
5. Tomorrow's dinner is ready to go. It'll be put in the crockpot in the morning.
Laundry is done. The house is in decent shape. I even put the Christmas dishes away and organized under the bathroom sink.
I'm not looking forward to the regular grind tomorrow brings, especially since I saw we're supposed to have a "wintry mix".
I'm going detox tomorrow - no diet soda, no booze, limited caffeine, nothing prepackaged or manufactured - a modified system tailored to my personal findings. I'll let you know how it goes. I'm excited about it because I hope to give my metabolism a boost and begin getting rid of the last of the tonnage I want to shed. Less than 8 months until the wedding, and I need to rock my mother-of-the-bride dress. Also, I need new clothes and refuse to buy them until I'm at my goal weight.
And now... I must make some serious writing progress. I have a few hundred words so far, but that's not enough...

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Feel Good Friday - The Saturday I Suck Edition!

Man! I do suck. No posts since Monday? I don't blame you if you're not stopping by anymore!
If you still are, my apologies! This week was one of those weeks. You know the kind I mean... the week you hope to never have again, but know you will. But a new week is upon us, so let's focus on the good stuff!
1. Making it to Friday.
2. A nice adult beverage when I finally got home.
3. Beautiful sparkly snow, even if I had to shovel.
4. The snow changed our plans, we had movie & pizza night instead.
5. Sleeping in this morning. And sleeping in tomorrow morning.
6. Baby B. He's growing so fast - still teeny tiny, but filling out and staying awake for longer stretches.
7. K5 time on the horizon.
8. Shopping day with my girl. Window shopping, candle smelling, haircut (for her), random stops for iced coffee and french fries, grocery shopping (not so fun, but we're trying some new recipes, so it was kind of exciting!), dinner out, frozen yogurt, more movies.
9. Talking plot ideas with her. I love that her brain works the same way mine does. I had an idea earlier and she right away gave me a great title. Once I get farther into this, I'll see what brainstorming is like with her.
10. Writing time! And no, I'm not abandoning my current project. I'm in need of a short break to refocus.  It happens, especially when there's a lot of outside stress going on.
Tomorrow consists of a first thing trip to the grocery store to obtain missing items before the cooking begins. We made homemade coffee creamer already. I can't wait to try it though I'm afraid it's going to be too sweet since I used coconut almond milk instead of regular milk. I might have to tweak it some, but we'll see. I'm going to try making breakfast burritos for the week. We'll see how that works out. Then, preparing myself for another week... Oy!
Okay. Going back to the work-in-progress.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Oy! Monday!

What a day! And I don't mean that in a good way!
It's cold! Horribly cold and the wind is blowing. I know it's January, but like I always say, if it's going to be cold, it should be snowing! It did snow a little earlier. Definitely not enough, but it was pretty coming down.
And the furnace was dead this morning. Neither That Man or I had time to restart it, so the kids (who had off today) had to deal with a frigid house. They did fine. Luckily we have the little fireplace that does a good job of warming the downstairs. It really wasn't too cold when I got home, which is good.
We won't talk about the bulk of my day... It should be sufficient to say that when it was over, I was glad.
I got some crappy news and that sucked!
Still... there were good things!
Baby B stopped by to see his Nanners. Well, technically, not to see me since he barely opened his eyes. He slept pretty much the whole time he was here, but he got lots of kisses. He is so cute and perfect!
Easy dinners. Still had to cook (and go to the store), but it could have been worse. (I'm ignoring the things I should have bought, but forgot, which means I'm also ignoring the fact that I'll have to go back tomorrow and then go other places in the frigid freezing cold.)
The kids cleaning up. The guys had a meeting here tonight and even though the guys they were meeting with don't care and probably wouldn't have noticed, I was still very glad not to come home to what I saw when I left this morning.
Weekend recap:
The kid didn't get his permit, because the testing place was closed due to the holiday. Oy! We were both very disappointed and I had to soothe his pain with a trip to the fancy grocery store for loose tea. (His new thing) That Man is taking a half day to get the permit done this week. If he doesn't it'll be March because K3 can't go on the weekends now because of the play.
The rest of the day was shopping, cooking, laundry, writing, bill paying, a quick trip to see Baby B. I filled my truck for $23.96 - saving $88.00! Not my best, but close! Love it!
Saturday night was good and fun and so needed!
Sunday with K5 was also good and fun and perfect! She said to me: "Nanners, I love you. You are my best friend." And my heart melted. God, I love that kid.
I did need another day to recover from my weekend, but that wasn't going to happen. Thank goodness this Monday is over... Though the week ahead doesn't look like a fun and shiny one at this point...

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Feel Good Friday

Yes, I am a slacker!
It has been a crazy, crazy week! And now it's Friday! (Really it's Saturday, but since I'm not in bed yet...)
Let's see...
1. Baby B! So stinking cute and doing so fantastically! He's got the best parents!
2. This work week being over. Thank goodness!!
3. Heart to hearts with K2.
4. My Amazon order arriving! Who else could be so excited over iPod cable clips and headphones?
5. Good writing progress this week.
6. K5 on the horizon! (Wow! I'm a grandmother of 2! How weird is that? I. Am. Not. Old.)
7. My house being mostly clean and presentable.
8. Sleeping in tomorrow.
9. Nearly $3. a gallon off of gas! (or close to that - grocery store first, then gas)
10. Impromptu Friday night gatherings. Okay, so That Man and I were supposed to have some alone time tonight. Never happened. Instead we got Baby B, K1 and J, S and J, my sister and niece and my niece's boyfriend, my parents, J's friend, and all K's in the house at the same time (never happens anymore)... and it was so good! (I do still want/miss my alone time with That Man though!)
That is all...

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Dear Baby B,
You are so beautiful and perfect and tiny! I am so thankful I've been able to see you every day of your life so far! (I know tomorrow will be different, but we'll see you again soon!) You are such a blessing and we cannot wait to watch you grow. You are very loved.

Dear K2,
Wedding planning is upon us! I'm excited! Dress shopping is first, then all of the crafting! It's going to be a blast!

Dear Idiot Neighbors,
It's bad enough that you think it's funny to park right in front of my house when there's an open space in front of yours. (You are a jerk) (Though how did you like it when I thwarted you on Thursday? While you were trying to park in front of my house? Ha!) But when you decide to go somewhere at 6am on Saturday, and get into a screaming match with each other... in front of my house... Well, my opinion of you has dropped even lower and I'm not sure that's possible. Move already!

Dear Waterbed,
Did you have to blow a seam on an insanely busy day? Did you have to cost us so much cash to fix you, and why are you not warm enough to sleep on yet? (We averted disaster though, which is always a good thing. But, Oy!)

Dear Mother-in-law,
I am so happy you are now living in a place you can thrive! You have activities, transportation, people your age (and one of the bff's mothers right next door! How cool is that?), a very cute apartment, and lots of closets! You are happier than I have seen you in many years, and I am so excited for you! But I will miss you being our neighbor! You lived behind us for so long, it's already weird that you're not here! (And I still am jealous of your awesome little crockpot!)

Dear Saturday,
Enough already! We're done! Moving, unpacking, organizing, and making sure the m-i-l had everything important handy, teenagers in the car, unfortunate scheduling for learner's permit (dang. next week), phone calls to find a new waterbed mattress, draining the leaky one, trying to do laundry, buying stupid expensive waterbed stuff, grocery shopping, new mattress set up, cooking dinner for the new parents and the m-i-l, drained hot water heaters, empty gas tanks, dropping K3 at the theater for a movie with friends only to get a call that he said the wrong theater and we had to backtrack to pick him up to take him to the right one, emergency stops for the d-i-l, baby holding, baby crying, crazy cats (K1's -  that cat is psycho!) heavy fog, idiot drivers, the bed being too cold to sleep on, dirty dishes, laundry, hurting feet, hurting knees, waiting for the kid to come out of the movie theater, stink bugs, stupid zits, drained bank account... Oh seriously!?
Oh wait... Saturday is over! Yay! I'm sleeping in! And writing! And doing laundry! Yay me!! Why do I always need a weekend to recover from my weekend?

Friday, January 11, 2013

Feel Good Friday

This week is easy!
1. Baby B! I got to hold him tonight! He is so fantastically adorable and perfect!
2. My daughter-in-law for being a champ and being such a good mommy! And my son for making everything so much easier for his wife!
3. K3 for actually wanting to hold Baby B. He has always had good baby skills, he just chooses not to exercise them!
4. This work week being over! A whole lot of time could pass before another week like this! I'd say it was a bad week, but Baby B changed all of that!
5. That man making a fantastic dinner tonight!
6. Chilling with the younger K's.
7. That man's mom moving to a place that will make her happy and keep her safe! It will be so weird and sad not to have her so close, but it's a good, and needed, move for her.
8. Some good writing time this week!
9. K5 time in the near future!
10. Having an adult beverage at the end of this long week!

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Baby News!

I'm a grandma again! (Or a Nanners!)
K1 and J were over last night and we were joking about K2's prediction that Baby B would be born today! They left early because J was exhausted. An hour after they left I got a call that they were going to the hospital. Eventually, they sent her home because things weren't progressing, but they ended up back this morning!
And Baby B is here! (K2 is gloating because she chose the right day!)
He is tiny and beautiful and very angry to be out in this cold weather! Mommy is doing great, too! Daddy is proud and psychotically tired!
I haven't gotten the chance to hold Baby B yet. His temperature was too low and he was swaddled with his mommy to try to bring his body temp up. Tomorrow! We stayed long enough to see him and make sure everyone was okay. Everyone needed to get some sleep, including us! But That Man and I are in love with this teeny tiny little guy!
And my adopted sister is being induced tomorrow!
Babies all around!

Monday, January 07, 2013

The End of the Holidays...

Or the beginning of the end...
The tree is down. The millions of needles are in the trash, on my porch, and stuck in places I'll find for the next ten months. Let's just say that dead thing should have come down at least a week ago, maybe even the day after Christmas. (But K5 loved that it was still Christmas here!)
The decorations have been wrapped and stored. Okay. Most of them. I still have dishes to pack away, kitchen crap to take care of, but I'll do that another day. The special "scary" Christmas box I use for my oldest every year has been successfully hidden so he doesn't find it to take it away. (It's from probably the 1970's and has the scariest looking little kids on it. I always find something to wrap in it for him!)
The cat is freaked out beyond belief. Her little buddy, the rat has been moved to a place that's not quite comfortable for her to watch. She came here after the tree was already up, so she is a little confused by all of the rearranging.
Oh... and it's still Monday... Hopefully by this weekend, we will have a new learner's permit in the house. Oy!
Now to write!

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Feel Good Friday - The Sunday Edition

Whew! What a long weekend!
Let's get to the list already...
1. K5 time. All day! We had a blast and I'm exhausted!
2. The baby shower going very well! The kids got a lot of nice things and we had a blast hanging with friends.
3. My first writing meeting without being on the board. It's been about 9 or so years... It's kind of strange and also good. I know I'll end up running for another board position once my 2 year's are up, but for now, I'm going to enjoy sitting in the back of the room.
4. Running around with That Man.
5. Wedding plans starting to come together.
6. Two 16 year olds and a 13 year old making breakfast while singing Les Mis songs.
The not so good...
1. The battery died in my truck. We got it taken care of, but the whole process was a pain...
2. On the way back from picking up a battery (one that was dead, too), a deer ran into That Man's car. Full on - into the driver's side door. The car's a little jacked and he had to bend the door to get it to close. The mirror was shattered. Oy.
3. A second trip had to be made do get a working battery during the time I was trying to prep for the baby shower.
4. Now that we've had Christmas with K5, the very dead tree needs to come down. I don't know when we're going to have time to do that this week.
5. No writing time this weekend! Actually, I'm heading there now so at least that's something...

Friday, January 04, 2013

Welcome, Cera duBois!

Join me in welcoming friend and amazing writer, Cera duBois!
Cera, thanks for stopping by. My blog is yours...

Thank you, Vicki for letting come on your blog today.

Recently while answering interview questions for the release of my debut contemporary western romance, I came across one that had me revisiting one of the hardest scenes I’d ever written.

I think the question was probably asking which scene was the hardest to write because of writer’s block or for technical reasons. But I chose the scene from my latest release, A Hunter’s Blade, as one of the toughest to write for emotional reasons.

The scene is one of the turning points in the story and it involves the heroine’s cabin being set on fire and the hero having to save her life. Brigit is a 365 year old Lykan (she was born a werewolf) and  the hero is a yearling vampire. Both of them have one thing in common—fire is one of the very few things that will kill them.

What made this scene so hard for me wasn’t writing the technical ins and outs of the fire or the action of the hero trying to find a way into the inferno before it totally engulfed the cabin. This scene had me in tears and had me seriously trying to come up with an alternative scene because I wrote it literally days after my younger brother’s funeral.

In September 2011, my 36 year old brother sustained fatal burns from a fire that had destroyed his home. We hadn’t been close for years, but I loved him and by writing this scene it had me reliving what he may have experienced. Needless to say, it was tough and hopefully I never write another scene that as emotionally drained me as that one did.

Have you ever written or read a scene that emotionally exhausted you?



Brigit Wolfe, a born werewolf, hasn’t killed a human in over a hundred years, although now, she wonders if the animal attacking people in Silver Creek, Colorado, isn’t her. But she might have bigger problems when her cowboy neighbor, Austin Calhoun, ambles into her bar. Austin hasn’t been a vampire for long, but he is determined to prove to himself that he’s worthy of his hunter’s dagger. Brigit’s rare beauty and blade-sharp tongue enchants him. She ignites a passion he thought was dead, but is she the killer his master sent him to destroy? During Austin’s investigation regarding Brigit’s involvement in the deaths, an old crime surfaces connected to her human best friend. These two immortal enemies have to join forces to solve the mystery before someone else dies. But can they survive the heat of their own desire?


She stopped in front of him and growled, “Let’s get something established about werewolves. There are two kinds. The lesser wolves who are made. And the Lykan who are born. I’m not one of the degenerates. I was born a Lykan in 1647. The first child of Valeriu and Elena. I’m an alpha and you are nothing more than a fledgling just hatched.”

He broke free of her power by drawing on his own. When he moved toward her, Austin held his hands to his side, ready to grab the hunter’s dagger sheathed inside his jacket. His fangs had long ago descended ready for a fight. “I don’t really give a flying fuck whether you were made, born, or hatched.”

When the energy of Brigit’s power touched him again, he pulled the silver blade. “I want to know if you’re the one preying on these people.”

Her eyes widened and she backed up a step as he approached. “I told you I didn’t attack those humans. I haven’t killed a mortal in over a hundred years. How many innocents have you snacked on tonight? How many of them did you want to kill?”

“I don’t hurt my prey,” he said through clenched teeth. He’d never let her know battling the beast within every feeding was the hardest thing he’d ever done. “If you didn’t kill those people then you have nothing to worry about. Best way to figure out who did is by working together.” He put the sliver blade away, and his fangs retracted.

“What do you have planned?”

Austin didn’t miss the slight quiver in her voice. “We begin with you telling me everything you remember from those nights you became the big, bad wolf.”

Buy Links:


Cera duBois has a strong belief in never giving up on your dreams…

Although Cera was unable to read due to dyslexia and a learning disability until she was in the fourth grade, she always had a story to tell. She wrote her first novel in eleventh grade when she had to keep a journal for her academic English class. Since her life was far from exciting growing up as a farm girl in West Central Pennsylvania, she decided to rely on her imagination to give her something to write about. Over the course of the school year, she wrote a tangled romance set in the Deep South during the Civil War.  Becoming an author was her ultimate dream. Despite holding a BS in secondary social studies education from Penn State University, she currently works full-time as a medical secretary. A mother of a teenage son and pre-teen daughter, she lives near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, with her husband of nearly 20 years. If she isn’t sitting in a quiet corner with her laptop, warm days will find her in the English garden surrounding her house. Cera loves to read and is interested in history, romance, science fiction and the paranormal. She also writes contemporary Westerns under her real name of Sara Walter Ellwood.

Website Links:

Thanks, Cera! I can't wait to read A Hunter's Blade! 

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

The First Day...

Look at that! Two posts in one day!
I have several friends who believe you should do everything you love and want to do often in the new year on New Years Day. It's taken me a while, but I've slowly shifted my thinking and actions to do the same. I think it's pretty cool and what a fun day!
Here's my day:
1. Sleeping in. (maybe a necessity due to not going to bed until 3:30 am, but it was still nice!)
2. Retreat planning and emails! Gotta love retreat!
3. Eating breakfast with my family.
4. Writing!
5. Talking to friends!
6. Sharing the house stuff with the family, so not one person is doing everything!
7. The movies with my family and friends. Loved Les Miserables so freaking much!! I'm thrilled the K's loved it as much as I do, and That Man, too.
8. Napped.
9. Visited friends. We dropped off their baby gift, got a tour of their new house addition, got a very good puppy fix, a bottle of wine, and some laughs!
10. Ate good food.
11. Laughed. A lot.
12. Talked to That Man about a lot of things.
13. Scratched my kitty girl and listened to her purr.
14. Didn't sweat the small stuff - there wasn't a lot of it today, but I tried to keep most of the negativity at bay.
So in all... a very good day. I could use one more day to relax and recharge, but it's back to the grind for all of us tomorrow...
The crazy busy weekend is coming... Oy!

Everything is Shiny and New!

Hello 2013!!
It's nearly 2am in the very early hours of the brand new year. Our New Year's Eve was spent playing Xbox games with the kids and 'rents. We chopped fruit, laughed, played arcade games, raced, ate, drank a little, laughed, ate some more... Things were quiet here and that's how we wanted it. Yeah, we missed our friends and family, but this was how New Year's Eve worked out for us this year... It happens... (and we're still recovering from "the cold")
So... here's my Thankful list for 2012:
1. My family - I couldn't ask for better people to share blood and last names with! And there are none better than the people who are in no way related, but are family no matter what!
2. My friends - There is no way I could have survived 2012 without them. (1 & 2 are kind of a merged thing)
3. That Man... Always. After 26 years of marriage and 4 years of dating (holy crap... that's 30 years!!), all I have to say is.. He's a Saint!
4. K5... because she's the best.
5. My son meeting the love of his life and saying "I do".
6. My daughter planning her wedding with the love of her life.
7. My son (the younger one) finding his calling and reaching for it with both hands and feet!
8. My daughter (the younger one) coming into her own and being so much like me that it scares me! lol!
9. The ideas in my head, because it means my dream is not dead.
10. New babies - my grandson due before the end of January, my "adopted" sisters daughter due this week,  our very good/best friends new grandchild due in the summer... New babies are hope and love and awesomeness!
Happy New Year!