Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The whistle stop tour starts Thursday and I'm throwing shoes and bookmarks and other must haves into a suitcase faster than a pelican dives for minnows. Might be the last post for a few days, unless I can wrestle someone's computer from them. If you're not local enough to pop in, please stop by my blog next week for my tour with the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance. I'll be giving away truffles! And books!

back to this week. A bit of a repeat, but here's the schedule. If you need addresses, please stop my website's events page for the complete listing.

Thursday, February 28, 1 PM, Berean, San Diego
Thursday, February 28, 7 PM, Berean, Temecula
Friday, February 29, 10 AM, Bible House, Orange
Friday February 29, 2 PM, Christian Book and Gift, Buena Park
Friday, February 29, 7 PM, Living Water, Covina
Saturday, March 1, 10:30 AM, Selah Christian Store, Redlands
Saturday, March 1, 1 PM, Long’s Christian Bookstore, Rancho Cucamonga

p.s. I'll be posting over Vader's Mom next week too.
p.p.s. American Idol--Tonight! :)

Monday, February 25, 2008

Tag lady

Becky just tagged me! Oh, I oughta...haha, just kidding.

Okay, here are the rules:

1. Pick up the nearest book (of at least 123 pages).
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people.

It would not be lying to say that Truffles by the Sea was the closest book--a bit self-serving--but not lying ;) So we'll skip on by to the next book, which happens to be: Valley of Betrayal, by Tricia Goyer. Here's the except:

To give in and run away would be the same as letting the enemy win.

As she strode along behind Benita, Sophie wondered if the matadors felt the same empowerment when they faced death in the arena. Did their face-off with their own weak humanity make them understand the joy of truly living?

That, my friends, is powerful stuff! Okay, my turn. I tag: Vader's Mom, Chaos-Jamie, Holy Mama, Anne Dayton and May Vanderbilt (who share a blog and will now get two posts out of this).

All wrapped up

Now that we have two teens in the fam, the TP's been having its way with our house more often. Yep, we were TP'd this weekend. If you look to the right of the pic you can see a nearly empty roll slipped onto the end of my beloved beach sign. Oh, the horrors.

It's taken my Pennsylvania-born hubby years to understand that this is actually a compliment; yes, teens in CA use toilet paper to deface the homes of people they like (kind of like my friends and I did to Archie C. when we were, say, 13+ years old...) Apparently, it's not thought of with the same *fondness* in other areas of the country. How about where you live? Share your TP stories here :)

p.s. Thank the good Lord it didn't rain until after the kids--yes, the kids!--cleaned it all up...;0

Friday, February 22, 2008

It's Friday--you gotta love that. So there's a bit of rain in California? Hopefully it'll wash away the yuck and give our plants what they need for a spectacular spring.

Still working away on deadlines ... Joanna, who got cut on last night's AI show said something like: "I want to touch people with music the way music's always touched me." I love that because I feel the same way about writing. I've always unashamedly said that I want to entertain people, but really, I want to do both: entertain and touch the heart.

Have a beachy weekend!

Thursday, February 21, 2008


America said goodbye to Amy, Joanna, Colton and Garrett tonight. So I guessed right on 2 of them. And Simon continued his booger ways by kicking them when they were down. Not exactly the American way, but then again, he's not American...did I just say that?

I suppose being mean just because one can doesn't sit well with ol' idealistic me. Maybe some of these will never hit superstar status, but they worked hard to get a spot in the top 24, so that's saying something. And if they continue to work hard at their art, maybe they'll actually get a living out of it. All I'm sayin'.

Phwee! Feeling a bit feisty tonight, lol... So. What did you think of tonight's send-off?

The Girls were in the House

Super-short post today as I work on deadlines and prep for the tour next week, but wanted to peek in and give you my one-line perspective of last night's Idol show:

Simon is mean.

Seriously, the gals were not as bad as he so often said. In fact, he was downright wrong about a couple: Alexandrea and Carly. My favorite of the night was a toss up, but I think I'd have to say: Ramiele. Jump on in here, though, and let me know who you liked.

I think that two of each category are voted off tonight (could be wrong). So here are my guesses for tonight's send off: Boys--Danny & Colton, Girls--Amy & Kady

What say you?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

The boys are back in town

Well, woo-hoo, how fun was American Idol tonight? Amy just commented that she wanted my thoughts on this season, and first I'd like to say, "Thanks, Amy." You're one of the few who want my thoughts on anything. LOL..

Okay, Yes to David A. (I can't spell his name either). Is he a doggone cutie pie or what? And the boy can sing!!! I pray he doesn't lose all that cuteness with all the fame, you know?

I dug the Aussie--Michael--too. Yeah, light my fire and all that, ha. (It was the song he sang, people. Sheesh) And what about the guitar-playing dreadlocks guy, Jason, I think. Something pretty sweet about him (and how I wish I had those cheekbones!) Nice voice too, which is kind of the point, right?

Also liked: David H., David C., Robby and Garrett.

So voting for talent is my first tier criteria, but I've developed a second tier. Wanna hear it? Okay, how about we vote for those who could use a bit of a makeover? Seriously, those top 12 really get help in that area and can anybody say Elliot Yamin? Beautiful voice--just LOVE Elliott--but did he need help with that hairstyle and facial hair or what? So anyway I'm wondering what they'll do with the locks of David C., Garrett and Jason if they make it to top 12.

Anybody else wonder about these things? Or is it just me? LOL... Quick--send me your thoughts before I dig myself in too deep.

got bbq?

Quick! What do you get when you put 9 tall teenage boys in a beachy cottage?

An empty fridge.

LOL Welcome to my world.
It started in the afternoon when Teen Son and one friend *innocently* phoned a couple of other guys wondering if they might want to bbq at the beach. Despite my warnings that it was looking "mighty cold outside", they shrugged me off with their manly scoffs and told me it'd be fine. Right. By the time my hub came home the boys were back--and their numbers had grown considerably--and we'd been shut out of the kitchen by the sheer size of them. Worse, I told hub that although I'd not had a chance to get any dinner together there seemed to be "plenty of food out there."

Ha! One grilled onion strip. That's it...that's all that was left. Grilled cheese, anyone?

p.s. They did clean the kitchen--one of the guys even washed the dishes!--so yeah, they're invited back ;) You know it...

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Becoming Julie

Watched Becoming Jane last night with my hubby--and yes, he's fabulous for:

* Sitting through a chick movie
* Sitting through a Historical chick movie
* Sitting through a Historical, chick movie set in England
* Listening to my running commentary about the film and the main character beginning last evening and continuing on through our walk along the beach this morning.

There's a funny little scene in the movie where the very rich Lady Gresham comes calling. In the midst of conversation, Jane (Austen) excuses herself and runs to a concrete bench against the house, sits and begins to work furiously on something in her lap.

Lady Gresham: "What is she doing?"

The nephew: "Writing."

A look of dismay covers Lady Gresham's wrinkled old face: "Can anything be done about it?"

LOL--And that's the thing with writers (you know who you are). A thought will strike, often at inopportune times, but you are compelled to get it down on paper or you will most likely die.

My family never bothers with the question that Lady Gresham asked because they already know the answer: "No." They understand that they are bound to find me lost in thought in the midst of a crowded room, and that all those scraps of paper in my car should never be discarded, and that what they say just might make it into the mouth of a future character.

What can I say? It's what I've become. Can anyone relate?

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day to you all! John 3:16!!!

American Idol (really) Begins!

Well. Teen Daughter really had a thing for the cocky 17 year old who lived in his car, so the fact that he got cut before the show really got going does not bode well for her American Idol Season. (And, yes, hubby and I have explained that the above-mentioned traits do not make for solid future husband material either).

Other than that heartbreaker, it looks like this season of AI will be pretty tough--and fun to watch. Lots of great singers in the pack of 24, which means I'll have to save my pennies for the summer tour tradition that I started last year.

So, woo-hoo to Tuesday & Thursday nights! And Holymama? I will not be reading my email on those evenings. LOL--my bloggity buddy, who's two hours ahead, let it slip one night who'd been let go. And I'll probably never let her forget it...:)) Come to think of it, Vaders Mom did a similar thing. What is it with you Texans?? Haha...love you anyway.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Cyber beach hopping

My podcast with reviewer Jill Hart is up! You can listen in to our discussion of writing and mothering at cwahm.com. (I'm up after a few short announcements for work at home moms.) Oh, and she's running a Valentine's contest with a bunch of fun prizes--wahoo!

And I'm yakking and sharing a cyber beach blanket with Jennifer AlLee over at her blog Musings on This, That & The Other Thing. She'll also be giving away a copy of Truffles by the Sea. I hope to see you there--sunscreen not required ;)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Between the Lines

Teen Daughter and I watch chick flicks often once the rest of the house is quiet, and our movie of choice on Sat. was The Jane Austen Book Club. Except for a couple of inappropriate scenes (we fast forwarded), we giggled through this story of six people and their quest to read and discuss one Austen book a month. Somewhat predictably, yet no less enjoyable, the characters' lives begin to resemble Austen story lines. How fun is that? I can think of a few movie characters I wouldn't mind being. Actually, scratch that. I'm actually thinking of a few actresses I'd rather look like. Hm.

I digress.
The movie would have been better for us if we'd actually read all six of Jane Austen's novels, so that's our goal. Then we'll rent it again, and when the characters move into their lively discussions of the books, we'll be right there with 'em, at least trying to sound smaht :)

I've never been in a book club myself (although I visited a couple last year!), but I've kept my hubby up late into the night with my one sided discussions of books I've just read (poor guy). Something about late nights and deep thoughts, you know?

How about you?
Do you book club it? Or keep your thoughts to yourself (and anyone else who happens to be stuck in the house with you)?

Friday, February 08, 2008

Well, Yum!

Got a call from my mother today that I just had to get down to Barnes & Noble pronto! Here's a pic of what I found :) I'm thinking some SoCal gals are going to be receiving a nice box of chocolates and fun reading for Valentine's Day, don't you think?


Alert: Teen Son passed his driver's test today. All I'm sayin'...;)

Thursday, February 07, 2008

You talkin' to me?

Last year I flubbed up a radio interview. Not that anyone actually told me that, but somehow I knew. See, because of the PST issue, the interview took place at 6 AM (!) my time, and anyone who knows me understands that I shouldn't be asked important questions before 10 (right, hon?)

With a new book out,
I've now been interviewed twice: once for a podcast on cwahm.com, and once for cbd.com. There's something so magical about an interviewer who tells you the audio will be edited. Gotta love that! And I had a chance for a large latte before each interview, so that should help.

But now that some time has passed,
I'm wondering what I said. Even worse, I'm thinking up newer and better answers. And this is why I love to write. When the story's gelling, I jot it down, but as I drive around doing the taxi thing for my kids, my characters and I have these fun little conversations where they suggest changes to their stories, and I, the dutiful scribe, comply.

If only that worked with pre-taped interviews, eh?
Ah well. One interviewer asked what I do to relax, and I literally stalled and held my breath. Would it be a cliche if I told her I went to the beach??? I finally let that breath out and told her exactly that. Later, off air, she said, "If you had not told me that I would have been so disappointed!"

Hahaha...so I guess I did one thing right. I'll let y'all know when those interviews are up--or not. LOL...

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

best for last

Haven't said much about American Idol so far, but I do think the producers saved the best segment for last (tonight's just a wrap up show). Last night the judges seemed to have softer hearts, and the competitors were less outrageous and more genuine. That's what I thought, anyway.

Does anyone have a comment
about the girl whose father died while she was on her way to AI? If that's true (and I'm sorry, but sometimes I just don't trust reality shows...), then she should win on her bravery alone. That kind of courage doesn't come every day, and she was touching to watch. Just ask Paula.

Next week: Hollywood!

Monday, February 04, 2008


Did I mention we had snow at camp this weekend? Lots and lots of fluffy, white, cold, sometimes icy, snow. Our ten girls were beside themselves. Seriously, they're used to sand so this snow thing was just too fun. And wet. And cold. But I mentioned in yesterday's post that there were 12 of us, so let's just say the cabin was really warm.

Never did church camp as a kid, but I've gone twice as a counselor. The first time was rough--who knew counselors were expected to drink lousy coffee on miniscule amounts of sleep??? This time around, I came prepared with that knowledge ahead of time, so I actually enjoyed myself more.

Okay, here's what I learned
this weekend about myself, the girls, and God:

--Anything less than five barf bags is not enough for the ride up a mountain.

--When the rules say No Ipods, they aren't talking about the counselors. I could've used one to block out the raucous merriment going on around me at 2 am.

--ALWAYS pack Pepto Bismol and kiddie Tylenol. Always.

--God is good.

--Camp worship leaders pride themselves on coming up with goofiest hand motions to accompany their songs. (Okay, but yeah, I've been humming and waving my arms all day...)

--4th & 5th grade girls know more about mannies/peddies than I did at 21.

--KP is FUN (Elementary Girl would be rolling her eyes about now.)

--God is good.

--Do NOT give a Reeses milk shake to a child who is lactose intolerant. Enough said.

--Playing football in the snow is, apparently, quite fun (just ask the boys).

--Even quiet girls can let loose when they're praising God. (Can I get an "Amen?!")

--God is SO good :)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

winners and campers

Ten girls, Two Counselors--and one bathroom! Need I say more? Actually, the weekend rocked, but I'm too wiped out to form enough sentences to tell you about it. Tomorrow, though, okay?

I did want to pop in here though and congratulate two winners of Truffles by the Sea. (Yeah, I decided to give away a second copy.) Anyway, they are: Brittanie and Ladystorm. Congrats, Ladies, and please make sure to drop me your snail mail addresses via my website contact page. Thanks to all who entered!!!

Off to sleepy land...:0

Friday, February 01, 2008

Gone Fishin'

Truffles by the Sea releases today--woop, woop! But I can't stick around and celebrate because Elementary Girl and I are headed off to winter camp with a bunch of other 4th & 5th grade girlies. I'm one of the counselors, if you can believe it. Pray they don't bury me in silly string or something, would you? haha!

My absence won't keep me from giving away a novel though, so if you'd like a chance to win a copy of Truffles..., leave me a comment today, tomorrow or Sunday. I'll pull a name from a hat when I return, and announce the winner on Monday. Sound good?

See you Monday. And don't forget those prayers :)