Friday, June 29, 2012

I'll probably be in a lot of trouble for posting this photo, but then again, my kids don't read my blog so maybe they'll never find out. As you can see by the date stamp, this was 1996, when they were 2 and 5, and I was, well, just a teenager. Ha. Notice my quest to start their beach obsession young. Contrary to how it looks, I fed my son. Even at nearly 21 now he eats like a horse but doesn't have the poundage that I would if I packed it on like that. How fair is that? I actually had another post in mind, but ran across this photo and decided to use it to usher in the first weekend of July. May it inspire you to hit the beach, touristy binocs and all ... =)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Just returned from a hastily planned trip to Pennsylvania. My beloved father in law passed away, so we packed up and left California in order to honor his home going. He lived in the same small town nestled in the Allegheny Mountains where he and my mother in law - also in heaven now - raised five boys. FIVE boys. Can't imagine what that was like!

One thing's for sure ... once again, when we arrived, we knew we weren't in beachy Cali anymore. Here's a photo of our niece, our son, and one of our daughters as they chewed on sassafras leaves during a hike. They also picked wild blueberries and spotted bunnies darting out of brush. No palm trees in sight ...

The loss of my in laws is profound, the hole in our hearts unmistakable. And our kids have spent many vacations (most of them, actually) in a town of about 4,000 people where truly everybody knows your name. My son has red hair like his dad's (Dan's is white now), so people recognize Matt as a Carobini whenever we're in town. We're going to miss so much about Ridgway, PA ... but thankful, yes, so grateful for the memories.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Repost ... from November 2010

I've reposted this in honor of The Anderson Family who will soon be moving to the Santa Cruz area, a place that holds so many happy memories for us. Here's to you, dear friends!

On Saturday afternoon, Dan and I strolled along the Santa Cruz Boardwalk, bought two tickets, and rode THIS. This is the Giant Dipper, built in 1924, and the site of many childhood memories for me. During the summers, my family spent two weeks in a cabin in nearby Scotts Valley, and a highlight was always our visit to the boardwalk. That and our multiple screaming plunges down that big ol' roller coaster. It's red, white and made out of wood...a roller coaster purist's dream :)

Soon after our ride, our college kid called my cell.

"So, you and dad rode the Giant Dipper?"
"By yourselves?"

After the boardwalk, we headed over to Steamer's Lane to check out the lighthouse/surfing museum, and watch surfers from a nearby cliff. The water looked crazy deep but the waves ran long and smooth, and one surfer in particular was quick enough to catch several (seemingly) unending rides. Best free entertainment of the day, I tell you!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Summer Reads on Sale

Wanted to let you know that ALL of my beach novels are discounted this week on Kindle. This is a special, limited time promotion by B&H Publishers. Also, Chocolate Beach, the Recipe Version, is FREE on KINDLE for five days only: June 18 - June 22. If you're interested in picking up any or all, please don't delay because these discounts expire soon.

You can find the Otter Bay Novels on Amazon by my name or by their titles: Sweet Waters, A Shore Thing, and Fade to Blue. Or click on the covers on my sidebar. (Also available at a discount is Truffles by the Sea.)

And if you'd be so kind, would you pass this news along to your KINDLE-loving friends? If you have any questions, just leave me a comment. Thanks much, and have a beachy day, my friends ... wherever you are ...

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Sometimes it's the little things ..

... like temporary free parking to check the surf. I mean, seriously, do you want to have to pay a buck only to find out that the surf is flat?

Lol ... see? This is why I write about seaside towns in all their quirky glory. I've lived in California all my life so I've got fodder for YEARS, people!

If the sun's out where you are, I hope you'll find some time (even for a break) to ditch the office and let it shine on your face a bit. Have a beachy day, wherever you are ...

Saturday, June 09, 2012

I send out news when I have some to share ... not just any old time. So I hope you'll sign up for my occasional newsletter either on my sidebar to the right (you'll have to scroll down a bit). Or you can click the HOME button up top and sign up on that page. The next issue will go out in about 9 days because I've got some sweet deals to announce! Plus I'll tell you about one of our favorite places to stay on the central California coast and what's up in my writing world.

I hope you'll sign up. I pinky promise not to bombard you with mail =).

Thursday, June 07, 2012

My oldest daughter just finished her last high school paper. For-e-vah. Next week she graduates, and I'm excited, but also can't quite believe it. She's my fun, redheaded crazy girl and I'm going to miss seeing that sweet face every day when she moves away to college. So weird that while she grew up, I stayed exactly the same. Haha...

Congratulations to the class of 2012! May you set the bar high ... but not so high that you forget to laugh a lot. It's good medicine, they say.

Saturday, June 02, 2012

This is Chauncey. My friend, Susan, has a rather dark sense of humor and has made it a tradition to give weird ornaments at Christmastime. She's part of a group of friends of mine in Orange County, CA - the OC girls, I call them - and since we missed our annual Christmas party last year, we met a couple of weeks ago at a posh restaurant in Newport Beach (Enchiladas = 22 bucks!).

So anyway, I chose the first gift: a PRETTY glass stocking to hang on the tree. It was red and sparkly and I loved it ... but then my (so-called) friend, Sharyl, STOLE it. So I had to choose again, and you guessed it, I got this little guy here. I've named him Chauncey in an effort to not be quite so scared of him.

This is the second time I've been stuck, er, graced by one of Susan's gifts. In fact, the last one was so HIDEOUS that he made it into a scene in Fade to Blue. In that scene, the hero and heroine meet at a church bazaar at the table of an "artist" who had created the most unlovely Christmas ornaments ever (except for Chauncey, of course). They were hand-painted golf balls that should have stayed on turf. In an act of chivalry, the hero of Fade2Blue bought a box full of the sad ornaments - and forever sealed himself within the heroine's heart.

Other than finding his way into a book, that gloomy little ornament didn't stay in the Carobini household long. In a prophetic twist, he landed back in the Christmas ornament pile, all spruced up and gleaming in a fancy wrapping paper when an unsuspecting Susan plucked him from the gift table. It was only right.

As for Chauncey, I promise not to become too attached ... after all, our annual Christmas get-together is only six months away ... (insert evil laughter here).