Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Newsy news

If you haven't yet signed up for my occasional newsletter, then get crackin' missy. The first issue's almost ready to send out! In it you'll see a preview of the not-yet-seen-before (except by just a handful of peeps) cover of Truffles by the Sea. I'll also be announcing a special, easy way for you to feed a child this summer.

So, chop, chop. The sign up box is to the right, or find it on my website.


How old are you?

I needed this. The days have been gloomy lately, in more ways than weather. I think I need a vacation, and if not that, then to shave a few years off my age. Hm. Yeah, maybe that'll do it. Too bad I narrowly missed 29, though (missed it by that much)...

You Are 30 Years Old

Under 12: You are a kid at heart. You still have an optimistic life view - and you look at the world with awe.

13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what's to come... love, work, and new experiences.

30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You've had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!

40+: You are a mature adult. You've been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

All about meme

Deena over at a A Peek at My Bookshelf tagged me for this literary meme. Here's the scoop:

1. Grab the book closest to you
2. Open it to page 161
3. Find the fifth full sentence
4. Post the text of the sentence to your blog
5. Don't search around for the coolest book you have, use the one that is really next to you.
6. Tag five people to do this meme.

Just so happens I had just cleaned off my desk and the closest book was The Andrew Murray Daily Reader (in Today's Language--love that since Mr. Murray lived in the 1800s :)

Anyway, here's my sentence: Until he declares it, he is not healed.

So as not to leave you hanging, the gist of it is this: Pray specifically.

Amen to that. Now you're all tagged! Let me know what ya come up with :)

Keepin' it real

Happy Tuesday, my friends! Spent the weekend being thankful for all those soldiers out there who made this country such a great place to live and breathe. Hope you all found some time to reflect and be a little lazy, like me.

My son ran across this video recently, and it cracks me up every time I see it. No nasty grams please--a church created it, after all. Just makes me think of all the debates that swirl around those of us who include faith elements in our work. We writers (those I've talked with anyway) are committed to including these elements in the most authentic way we know how, but egads, let's hope Christian Genius guy doesn’t decide to try writing fiction anytime soon. LOL

Anyway, view on:

Friday, May 25, 2007

Friday Fotos! and summer ridin'

Anyone who really knows me, knows that my top "love language" is not receiving gifts. (If you don't know what I'm yakking about, see here.) Don't get me wrong--gifts are great, but if I had the choice between a new handbag or a big smooch from my hubby, I'd take the latter. (Maybe I oughta be writing romance rather than -lit books. Hm.) That said, hubby got me this gift last Christmas, dubbing it my "booksigning" ring. A dolphin leaping through a diamond hoop--who wouldn't just love that? Makes me want to say I Do all over again :) Ya done good, hon!

And this cracked me up because the only car I ever swooned over as a teen was a convertible Vdub. Never got one, but apparently my inner teen still pines for the car of my youthful yearnings (you know, the ones where I was carting around all my cool friends instead of bags of groceries and smelly lunch bags. No offense, kids :) Anyway, for your getting-ready-for-summer quizzing pleasure:
Your Summer Ride is a Beetle Convertible

Fun, funky, and a little bit euro.
You love your summers to be full of style and sun!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

This is her "Now"

Beautiful song, beautiful voice, beautiful person. Congrats, Jordin!

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

American Midol

This just in...tears and fretting in the Carobini household tonight when Elementary Girl accidentally pressed the wrong digit and voted for--gasp--Blake. Say it ain't so! (Yeah, it's so.)

So hubs has a plan. Should Blake win (near impossible, IMHO) he'll tell Elementary Girl that he read online how Blake won by just one vote.

This is what can happen when a big brother grows up to be a Dad ;-)

Love lifts us up...

Last season, seeing as the Bachelor was an Italian prince and that I'm married to a prince of an Italian myself, I couldn't help but justify watching all episodes of The Bachelor Rome. Turned out the whole thing was a bunch of hooey, so I decided to leave my soul in a better state, and avoid the entire new season altogether.

That lasted until three weeks ago when I cautiously caught an episode of The Bachelor: An Officer and a Gentleman. The usual suspects were in place. A handsome (sort of) bachelor who for whatever reason hadn't yet found Mrs. Right, and three giggly women all vying for a fat ring and plenty of notoriety.

Only one of them wasn't all that giggly. Actually, she seemed reserved and even a bit skeptical herself. While the others kept "putting themselves out there" (the mantra of bachelorettes from years past and present), Tessa kept her emotions more in check than the rest.

It worked. Last night, after Tessa finally told Andy that she loved him, he bent that knee and proposed to her. Marriage, as in, forever. Yeah, I know it's just a show. And frankly, this isn't how it's done. But the romantic in me that swooned over that proposal last night, somehow, hopes that this one sticks.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Overheard at jury duty...

So I mentioned that last week I had jury duty. Did I mention what a real yawn of a day it was? I got dismissed from one jury selection, but they were only looking for an alternate. An. Alternate. Twelve of us in there to interview for a spot that might allow us to vote should one of the real jurors keel over in the middle of the trial ;-)

As I was saying, it was pretty dull. Unless you're a writer, looking for stories, like moi. In that case, it was fairly exciting because I overheard the following in the jury waiting room:

--A medical professional who treated clients at home--until a neighbor turned said medical professional in.
--A chatty clairvoyant.
--A spouse ditching work to hang out with their spouse on jury duty.

...and more. Needless to say, I'll be busy writing this week, lol.


Speaking of writing, check out this Publisher's Weekly article profiling five new authors, including Kathryn Cushman, whose debut novel, A Promise to Remember (Bethany House) releases in the fall. Check out her list of favorite authors (she says, blushing profusely).

Sunday, May 20, 2007

For your Sunday quizzing pleasure...

You Are a Believer

You definitely believe in God - and you're unwavering in your beliefs.
In fact, religion and spirituality are definitely big parts of your life.
Religion shapes how you view right and wrong, as well as the decisions you make.
It's hard for you to imagine how your life would be without your belief in God.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Friday Fotos! and duty free...

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket
I'm free! Served my one day of jury duty, then they let me go-woohoo! So I'm back to compiling that beach reads list for the summer. See this post for some recommendations from my commenters. In the meantime, Happy Friday.

If you'd like to submit a beach-themed pic for next week's Friday Fotos, drop me an email via my website.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Just doing my civic duty

On a seriously brief break from jury duty at the moment, but couldn't keep my thoughts about American Idol to myself any longer. About last night--are they kidding? Melinda Doolittle was sent home? Feeling kinda ashamed of my fellow Americans at the moment.

Some criminal out there better hope I don't get picked for a jury today. I'm in a hangin' mood.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

O, Gilmore Girls, How Do We Love Thee...

We interrupt our regularly scheduled American Idol coverage to bring you this announcement: Waaahhh! Gilmore Girls, the series, has ended. It hardly seems so.

Rather than recap the finale, I'll let Gilmore Girl Fanatic do that for you. But first, indulge me this sweet memory of our family's introduction to Lorelai & Rory, won't you?

See, it all started the first summer after GG's debut season. Hubs couldn't get away that year for a real vacation, so I cooked up a plan to rent a beach house in a nearby town for one balmy week. I figured he could work and the kids and I could play. That's fair, don't ya think? Turns out the house we rented was owned by someone in the TV biz. I know this because of all the Emmy screeners we found in his cabinet. Screeners are copies of shows--without commercials--that members of the academy view so they can vote for their fave. Anyway, this guy had a bunch of these screeners in his cabinet, so each night, as the waves danced outside our window, we curled up on the sofa and watched something new.

That's when we discovered our pals, Lorelai and Rory. It was magical. Hear the waves lapping? See the moon glowing? Stay with me here...

Over the years we've watched Rory grow up, become bff with former nemisis Paris, and even make a switcheroo and head to Yale instead of Harvard. We've seen Lorelai fall in and out of love (Max, some guy I can't remember, Chris and Luke), and we cheered when she and Sooki finally opened an Inn of their own.

There were bumps in the road, some things we didn't like nor agree with, but so it is in life. We offer perspective and grace, then move on. Am I sighing out loud yet?

Anyway, tonight was tougher than I thought. I've never cried over a TV series ending before, I mean, c'mon it's just a show! But in a way, this one represented more for me, somehow. I got caught up in the moment. It's as if I were transported back in time to that weeklong trip some six-ish years ago, to a lazy carefree week (okay, for everyone but hubs), when we discovered the bond between a hip mom and her precocious daughter.

As it happens, Pre-teen daughter and I lay shoulder to shoulder last night on the couch, sniffling throughout the final episode, and I realized: this summer she'll become Teen Girl. Next she'll be off to high school, then college, then, like Rory, out of the nest and into adulthood.

Man, I'm gonna miss that show.

Summer Reads

It's mid-May and I'm between books and waiting for edits on one and--woohoo--dreaming of building a stack of reads for lazy summer days at the beach. Already read Billerbeck's Split Ends and Gutteridge's Scoop ('cuz I'm impatient). So what's on your list? (Other than Chocolate Beach, that is. LOL)

Tell me, tell me...

Monday, May 14, 2007


Christy Award Nominees have been announced. You can find them on Becky's site.


I've started and re-started several posts today, but I'm just too jazzy-jazzed over a new book idea to stay focused on blogging. Sawwwy! So for your quizzing pleasure, I give you the latest from Blogthings:

Arty Kid

Whether you were a drama freak or an emo poet, you definitely were expressive and unique. You're probably a little less weird these days - but even more talented!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday Fotos!, plus enter to win a copy of Chocolate Beach

Took this pic last year on a trip to Santa Catalina with Pre-Teen Daughter's middle school class. The island sits about 26 miles from the LA area, and it's breathtaking! I run this photo today because, sadly, a brush fire's moving through the island at the moment, and threatening to level the small town of Avalon. This is the second large Southern Cal fire in less than a week. Pre-Teen Daughter made some friends from Catalina on a recent camp trip on the mainland, so say a prayer for their safety, okay?

Speaking of islands, remember that trip out to Anacapa I talked about a couple weeks back? (humor me) This here's a pic of a bonafide blowhole, ie, a hole in a sea cliff in which columns of spray are jetted upward ( Anyway, notice how all the 3rd graders stay carefully back from its menacing explosion (yeah right).

And look what I found! A link to the Chocolate Beach Giveaway I stumbled upon the contest through their monthly newsletter. If you're looking for a fun beach read at a great price (i.e, free), why not enter? Contest ends 5/16. Let me know if you win :)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

We're gonna miss you, Lakisha.
God Bless!

updated: Friday Fotos tomorrow. If you've got one to send to me, drop me an email, okay? Remember: beach themes. Can't wait to see what you in the mid-west come up with :)

And looking for a last minute Mother's Day gift? (Yeah, I'm running late too...hope Mom's not reading this :) Chocolate Beach is available at most Barnes & Noble, Borders and Christian bookstores. Just a thought...:]] although my mom's already read it, lol.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

I'm It

A meme's making it's way through the my blogger pals' sites--ack! So I've been tagged by Sharon Hinck and Deena Peterson.

Never was very good at the whole tag thing. I was a swimmer in high school, a runner after that--no team sports in my past. Hopefully I can get it in gear long enough for this.

So. My eight random facts:

1. When I was 12, I took commercial acting lessons (and yes, the camera does add 10 pounds).

2. After one said lesson, I chased Robby Benson down in a Bob's Big Boy parking lot and asked for an autograph (such a cutie).

3. Again when 12, attended a taping of the Donny and Marie Show--and got Donny, Marie and Jay Osmond's autograph (see the pattern here?).

4. I used to be a secret shopper for Taco Bell (Yo quiero...).

5. Used to drive a '66 mustang (yeah, baby!)

6. Spent a week kickin' it up in London with a gal pal about a month before my wedding (cheerio and all thot rot).

7. Found out I was pregnant with baby #1 the day after a 20 mile training run for the LA Marathon (oops).

8. My husband calls me "Jewel" (yeah, say it, say it: Ahhhh...)

Okay, I'm tagging these gals: Vader's Mom, Dawn Kinsler, (who probably won't respond since I forgot to answer her tag a few months back), Pastor Mac, Tickled Pink, Damselfly, and an open invitation to three more out there...if you take the challenge, let us know!

Btw, these are the 'rules':
1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
4. Don't forget to leave them a comment telling them they're tagged, and to read your blog.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

a girl's gotta eat

Sorry about the no post. Busy day today. On my way to have lunch by the beach with this author. :-)

Talk soon!

Monday, May 07, 2007 this thing on?

Monday update: Just learned about a gliche over at my website. If you've sent an email through the contact form in the last few days, chances are I didn't receive it. So, I'm not ignoring you :-0 If you want to try again, just send it to my first name followed by the 'at' sign followed by my full name dot com. Oh what we do to avoid spammers...

Happy Monday

So for what it's worth, here's my quiz for the day. If you're the creative type, go for it :-)
You Are 78% Creative

You are beyond creative. You are a true artist - even if it's not in the conventional sense of the word. You love creating for its own sake, and you find yourself quite inspired at times.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Friday Fotos!

Got this cool sunset from Jamie. Makes me want to go there.

And here's Jamie and her little possum, the cutie pie. She's dressed for the beach and he's, well, he's not. I'm thinking he oughta wear at least a little sunscreen, don't ya think?

Amanda sent me a link to a whole mess of "beachy" pictures and this one just sort of stuck out to me. I especially like the way her babydoll holds up the sketch pad all serious-like as she studies the big fish.
See more of Amanda's pictures here.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Hub and I braced for the worst last night

...but considering we were right, t'wasn't so bad. Yes, Phil and Chris left Idol last night, no big surprise there. But our girls love Chris so when you know that's coming, ya just brace. Know what I mean?

But they're troopers and they knew. It was time.

First thing this morning, though, Pre-Teen Daughter's asking, "Can we get Idol Tour tickets right away???"

So it's not exactly good-bye Chris, more like 'see ya later.'
Thought for today: We are priceless works of art in the eyes of our Master.
--Priscilla Shirer. Nice, huh?

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Life truly is a box of...

Chocolates. At least for one winner out there. Anjanette Mensa, come on down! Anjanette's the winner of a 1lb. box of assorted, decadent choco-lots from Trufflehound's Fine Chocolates in downtown Ventura.

Woo-hoo & Congrats!

Thanks to all who participated. Sometime later this year I'll do another giveaway, this time for truffles to celebrate--what else?--the release of Truffles by the Sea.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

After the Storm

Turned in my next book, Truffles by the Sea, to Bethany House last night, and here's what piled up while I was writing. Okay, not really. I got this pic from a professional organizer's website. But it's a fairly good representation of my home at the moment (Don't ya think so, kids?) Anyway, yesterday was the final day of my Great Chocolate Giveaway, and I owe somebody some chocolates, I know I do. As soon as I can find my computer, I'll print out the list and randomly choose a winner. But you might want to check back...could be awhile...;-)