Sunday, July 30, 2006

It's only money, right?

We bought a car! And a new A/C unit! And new patio furniture! And glamorous vacations all over the country! And a new custom cabinet for the brand new kitchen! And school supplies and uniforms!

And now I'm going to eat air sandwiches with tap water for the next 20 years to pay for it all.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

It's all Stevie's Fault!

In yet another facet of sibling bickering, Matty has taken to blaming Stevie for every tragedy that can befall a 6 year old this summer, warranted or not.

Stevie has been a pretty good sport about it, recognizing the fact that no matter how much Matty yells, sometimes his brother's tears really aren't his fault.

So yesterday, Amy spilled something on the tile floor, and Stevie was cleaning it up half-assededly. (I know that's not really a word.) Matty walks in, slips and falls on his half-ass, and immediately screams, "Stevie! You should have put a wet floor sign there!"

School starts in 2 weeks, and I'm not sure if Stevie will get subpoenaed by Matty's lawyers before then or not.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Heart Attacks

OK, so I just returned from the cardiologist, and I am faced with a moral/health dilemma.

And now I realize that I've never written about my weird heart condition and rarely do I speak of it, (I didn't even blog about the hospital!) so it will make no sense to anyone, so I suppose it will be a dilemma for a while longer.

Must think now.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


And in an effort to streamline my completely streamless online life, I closed one of my multiple email accounts today.

The only thing it was doing was collecting email from one neglected online writer's group and some pretty distasteful porn spam, so I bid it a good riddance today.

For those of my friends not wishing to sell me mispelled online drugs, you know where to find me.

Early Retirement

May this serve as official notice of retirement for the summer season, and yes, I know it is still July.

I must put away my continually wet bathing suit and useless hair rubberband, page-crinkled novel that is stuck on page 33 because I don't have time to get past it, and over-stressed American Express card; and place them all in a sensory deprivation tank with me watching my tan lines fade. We just cannot take any more vacation.

But this was a nice one to end the summer with. Seeing everyone together--mostly passing them along the lazy river with a strawberry daquiri in hand--and spending entire days basking in the sun, water, and family was satisfying to say the least. All of the many events both planned and unplanned went off without a hitch.

Now it is time to get back into the swing of things--whatever that is--starting with a whole lot of laundry and a trip to the grocery store which must include fixings for Eggs Benedict because I am spoiled in yet one more facet of life.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Catching Up

In a rogue change of schedule, the boys are off with their Aunt, Uncle and cousins for a few days in Orlando until we all meet up together this weekend for the family reunion.

It's not like a school day being here with just Amy, because that has a finite end of silence at 3:00 every day. This is the first time that they've been away overnight for more than 2 days without one of us.

So what have I been doing during the time, you ask? (Or don't, but have a few minutes of surfing time to kill.)

~Spending Money. Something I hate to do unless it is something that can be delivered by room service. After nursing the under-sized A/C unit for 6 years, it and we, finally broke down and installed this monster that freezes juice boxes left out on the table overnight.

But when it gets too cold in the house in July, at least I can retire to the lanaii on my new seagrass patio furniture from Pottery Barn...(you are soooo jealous.)

~Going Bulemic on the Kids' Rooms. After their toy binging, I am purging with garbage bags full of broken toys, Happy Meal treasures, broken pieces and a whole lot of mystery plastic.

~Working Out. I think the personal trainer fairy put a gold nameplate on a locker at the gym, so I figure I should try to visit it as often I can. I also have figured out that I can read books on the treadmill, so it makes my time on it a little more palatable.

~Misc. Crafting. You know I have a severe craft handicap, but the things I have made for this reunion will astound you. I bet HGTV has sent out a film crew to document my gift bags for history.

~Writing. Yep, I am still plugging away.

~Bona Fide Employment. I got a job. A real, paying job. A contract no less. Details to follow.

See? So I deserve poolside Mojitos at my all-time favorite hotel tomorrow.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Star Gazing

Upon Ver's suggestion--one whom I trust because we seem to frequent the same pages often--I picked up Maps for Lost Lovers, by Nadeem Aslam, because she said it was "rich like heavy cream," and I have a well-documented penchant for the rich and creamy.

Anyway, I am reading, or rather lapping my bowl full of beauty, and this one leaps out at me as something of note:

He watches as a shooting star traverses the night sky...According to Islam, when something important--favorable or disastrous--is about to happen in the world, and Allah is arranging the final important details with the angels, Satan moves closer to the sky to eavesdrop: shooting stars are flaming rocks that are thrown at him to drive him away; and they therefore should be read as the imminence of a momentous occasion.

I think I'm going stargazing tonight.

(I wonder if it works on a smaller scale?)

Thursday, July 13, 2006


It's been a while since I cooked.

I mean really cooked. Oh sure, I've thrown together a few meals over the last month that resemble food--but with all of our traveling lately, we've eaten out a lot or taken in.

But last night I had the opportunity to spend almost the entire day creating. For the very lucky assembled guests, we dined on individual Beef Wellington au Duxelles, garlic mashed potatoes, fresh green beans in a balsamic vinegarette, a lovely salad, and a homemade mixed berry pie. Everything from scratch and it was divine.

Even as I was working on the bordelaise sauce, the pressure-washer came in and said, "Wow, what are you making? It smells great!"

There is nothing like a red-wine reduction to make you feel alive....

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Writing till my fingers bleed or die of boredom

My diversity would surprise you.

Not really, it would probably just bore you, but I'll tell you anyway.

Most of my scribblings get into the glamorous publications: the Inspirational Chicken Soup of Chocolate Cups with a Dollop of Sentiment Series, (I'm sure you've heard of them--Another release in October!) the discriminant Internet, this blog, and even a coffee can in Seattle.

But the rather unglamourous portion of the program, the infomercial to my life's work, is in a local print magazine which pays me to write about crosswalks and power outages.

Every month I write my book review and interview, and any other slush that hasn't been picked up by someone else. And every month I write volumes of words on mundane subjects that I know no one reads--not even me. It is within these humble pages that I justify my life as a writer--at least in the eyes of the IRS--because it is my bread and butter, even if it is just the heel of the loaf.

Well, tonight, I covered a meeting in which again, I believe no one pays a lick of attention, and sometimes I'm tempted to write, All good men must come to the aid of the party over and over again just to see if anyone notices.

Well, apparently someone does notice, because after the meeting a very nice gentlemen sought me out before I bolted as quickly as possible to shake my hand and tell me, "Thank you for all you do for us. You do a great job." Please note: as in ongoing.

No, sir, thank you.

And in other news, even with this meeting, a book review, a trip to the grocery store, a workout and an afternoon at a friend's pool, I still managed to pen a page to le Novel.

Go me.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Chapter 1

Just as the American Lung Association reminds us never to quit quitting, I think it is equally important never to quit starting. Writing The Novel, that is.

And so a very rough, yet beautiful in its doneness, first chapter has been penned, and a firm, yet realistic schedule to complete the next twenty also set.

And might I add that it felt more than a little cathartic and strangely soothing once I got started, too. It's as if I found a safe and appreciative place to dump all of the weird thoughts I have everyday and pretend it's fiction.

Sshhh...don't tell anyone.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Some photos and a serious question

Stevie and Danny: The two most handsome ushers.

The world's most adorable flower girl.

And Matty racing the mascot at the tourists game.

Bonus question: Considering that SubDiva is not really me, but a character I created on a flimsy, yet hilarious reality...if you had to give her a first name, what would it be?

Thursday, July 06, 2006

River Reading

OK, so I only read one book while on vacation these past 2 weeks. I actually started another, but realized wisely that if I read another delicious novel about lifelong unrequited love, I might have to hurl myself in the Tennessee River that flowed past our hotel room like some of my recent tragic heroines.

So I chose a different route. Craving the lighter, I read Melissa Bank's new release, The Wonder Spot. (Bibliophiles: she was the one who wrote The Girl's Guide to Hunting and Fishing ) This one was about a girl, and then young woman, and then older-ish woman, who seemed to be stuck in mediocrity--never excelling at anything, barely keeping a job, always losing a boyfriend--every relationship she had seemed to be superficial--like her life. Reading it, you still had sympathy for her, though, and wanted to shake some sense into her at times, but feeling like reading her story was almost encouragement in the literary sense. It wasn't that she was lazy or apathetic necessarily. I think it was more of she was just perpetually waiting for something to happen to change her life.

Anyway, you'll have to read it to find out what happens, but not for the first time in my life I wondered if that waiting for something to happen theory isn't always the best course of non-action.

With so much sky and so much river, you couldn't help seeing the big picture. It was what you already knew, but crowding into the subway or rushing to a movie, you only saw it for a second, and close up. Now I take a good long look. I'd always heard you couldn't see stars in Manhattan because of all the lights. But here they all were. Here was my night in shining armor.

We're Home!

I am exhausted, but pleasantly so. 9 different states, 2 sacraments, countless miles and memories. A wonderful hodge-podge of fun.

Catching up--will post some pretty awesome pictures later.