Monday, December 15, 2008

While Walkin Home at Midnight

I got to thinking that maybe I should post something from myself today, instead of yet another weblink. So today's treat (?) is the first short-short I wrote as an adult. It was written for a contest that I knew it wouldn't win, which is fine. It got me writing and that was the point. With hopes that you will really enjoy it, here is the short-short, "While Walking Home At Midnight." (And if you've ever hit the writing section of my very out-dated webpages, you may have read it already.)

While Walking Home At Midnight.

Miranda stepped out into the street, starting dejectedly for home. All Hallow's Eve. Happy anniversary, she thought wryly to herself. He left me a year ago today and has the nerve to call and tell me how happy he is. They have each other and I have my overtime and antidepressants.
Hairs at the nape of her neck raised as though electrically charged. The sensation of being followed seeped up her spine. A shadow passing overhead. Unseen. Watching. Following. Miranda slowed. Pause. Turn. Nothing there. Peering into the gloom around revealed nothing more than familiar shadows, usually comforting. Tonight they menaced her. Off in the distance, the University clock tower sang out 12:00, the resonant boom adding to the Gothic atmosphere.
Chiding herself, she continued walking. Get a grip, Miranda. Appropriate a night as it may be, there is nothing out there but the overworked imagination of a world-weary mind! It is time to get home. The tingly feeling that she was being followed refused to be shaken and left behind with the wind-whipped fall leaves. "What's wrong with you," she muttered. "I've walked this route a hundred times and I am completely safe." Just keep repeating that, she thought. Like a mantra of safety. I-am-completely-safe. Talk yourself home . The boogie man does not exist. You're just tired, exhausted, and more than a little depressed.
Ahead a shadow crossed her path, startling her. Probably just a stray cat, she argued. Yeah, a very large stray cat. Boy, you're jumpy tonight! It passed over again. My imagination may be putting in for overtime, but that was not a cat. Her walk increased its pace, just short of a trot. I shouldn't be this spooked! Just a trick of the lighting and the wind in the leaves. I am completely safe...
Miranda turned a corner, the street leading straight for home. And safety. Her walk now a jog. Just two more blocks and I can lock my imagination outside with the darkness and shadows. Nothing more for company than my cat, infomercials, and some microwaved food.
Again, that feeling of scrutiny. Someone was following her. Wheeling around, ready for confrontation, she saw no one. Nothing to confirm her fears. See, you ninny! The apartment's safety beckoned her. The security of a door between her and the darkness. The shadowy figure paused ahead. Still unseen. Waiting.
Miranda neared an alley entrance, feeling eyes upon her, sizing her up. She still saw no one there. Nothing. Alone. She was alone. Story of my life. She determined to walk the last stretch of street calmly, like a sane woman.
Before her. A man standing in the shadows. Unable to speak or move, breath caught, her eyes held by that appraising gaze. He reached out, with infinite gentleness, brushing the back of his hand against her cheek. The gesture intimate, yet innocent. An electric shock coursed through her body. He looked into her soul. Caressing it. Learning its secrets.
Suddenly alive, Miranda moved toward him, unbidden. He backed into the shadows, pulling her in after, using only that gaze. Without hesitation, Miranda followed, held prisoner by those penetrating grey eyes.
She walked forward into her salvation.

Copyright 1995

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Latest Holiday Video

This hit my funny bone tonight, so I'm sharing with anyone who stumbles across my little blog...There are folks who stumble across my little blog, right?

Twelve Days of Christmas, Shrek-Style

Donkey's The Night Before Christmas

Puss-In-Boots The Night Before Christmas

Friday, December 12, 2008


Author Charlaine Harris, one of my favorites, will have a new Sookie Stackhouse novel coming out in May 2009! Sorry if I seem a little excited, but apparently the shape-shifters come out into the open in this one. AND she's got the first chapter up on her website just to torment us.

You can check it out here: Dead and Gone, chapter one.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

O, Tannenbaum!

I'm sitting at the dining room table, typing away on Mathilda, with the beautiful light of our Christmas tree keeping me company. It's better than writing by candlelight. Idol Pursuits may just get finished by the 25th after all.

The tree up also means that I finally feel like I celebrated a birthday this past weekend. You see, the tree goes up on the weekend closest to my birthday, which is the 7th. We were supposed to be at a family reunion about 2 hours away that day, but Mother Nature stepped in with some icky roads.

Why didn't we put the tree up on Sunday, then? Well, because of The Kate's puppy, Jake. He's adorable. He's also all boy and a little linebacker. So, the tree is going in the dining room this year, not the living room. To do this, we had to clean the back of the dining room up and move a table into the fairly furniture-empty living room. (Long story, going partly back to the lice invasion.) And then the carpet had to be steamed clean - thanks to the puppy.

We did all of that on Sunday. Tuesday, Mr. Incredible and the girls put the tree up and tonight lights and garland went on. Tomorrow we'll bury it under ornaments.

And tonight? I get to sit here, feeling another wonderful year older, and contemplate my writing, by tree light. It's a wee bit o' bliss, let me tell ya.

(Oh, and for those nosy folks out there, I am now the answer in terms of age. So grab your trusty towel and hang on for the ride. ;)

Today's Video, Day....4

Sorry about yesterday, but I let my blood sugar get completely out of whack. Diabetes sucks when that happens. My BS was over 400 yesterday afternoon. Yeah. That's pretty high. I'm still running high, at around 300, but I'm feeling much better today. Another couple days of being beyond good with my diet and we should be back to normal.

So, today's video doesn't have a dang thing to do with Christmas, unless you decide to pre-order one of the dvd's. And am I the last person to discover Dr. Horrible? Don't answer that. I already know I'm not, because I got to share it with Jeff and Kate just now. :)

So, without further ado, Josh Wedon's Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog. Who knew Neil Patrick Harris could sing so well? I think I have a crush....

Monday, December 8, 2008

Today's Video

It's starting to look like a week of these things. :) Lucky you!

Today's You Tube offering has nothing to do with Christmas, but it's still classic. I'm thinking of having the girls just listen to it to start their day so I can get a chunk of it out of the way, right off the bat. (Lucky them!)

The Mom Song

I'll eventually write a post of some substance, but aren't these fun?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

More Cool Video

Here's today's treasure, which I stumbled across last night on You Tube. My mom has this video taped from when was originally on TV. And we still drag it out to watch almost every year. It's up there with "A Charlie Brown Christmas" and "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" as far as I'm concerned.

"Will Vinton's Claymation Christmas", on You Tube, in three parts:

Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Happy Holidays, Y'all!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Video of the Day

So, I'm sitting at the computer doing Christmas cards for a big family gathering tomorrow. I'm also reading my email after having been gone all day shopping. And what do I find, but this incredible video of "Carol of the Bells", which I absolutely love. If this doesn't blow you away, go check your shoes for lead weights. Honest.

Carol of the Bells.

At just over 9 minutes, it's a little long, but that just means you don't have to click "Play" as often. ;)

[Okay, it's still a really pretty version, but after listening to it again today, I can only conclude I was pretty tired last night - there were a few off-notes in there that just make you cringe. (7/12/08)]

Oh, and as a bonus, here's the only version of "The Little Drummer Boy" that I can stand. This is a pretty good cut of this particular song. I'd never seen the lead up to the song before. It's good.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

I did it!

Wow. It was a good feeling to watch that bar turn red as I passed the 50,000 mark. I'm still writing, and will keep updating my word count until the 30th, but I think tomorrow is for taking it easy.

There are some non-writing related posts I'd like to make, so I'll try to maybe catch those up tomorrow as well. (Okay, actually it's already tomorrow - Wednesday - but I haven't been to bed yet, so it's not tomorrow for me.)

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Hit the Wall

Yep. I think my brain is boggled at the sheer amount of writing I've done today. It hasn't had a workout like that in a very long time. It's now 10 o'clock. And I'm just over 45k. That means I have two hours to do 5000 words. Can I do it? I don't know, but I'm going to try. A break to go buy some doggie treats helped clear my head, so we'll see what happens.

Writing Whirlwind

Apparently I hit my stride last Monday with that 5K day. Whew that was a rush. And it felt so good.

So, here I am at the 43K mark. Midnight tonight is when you can start validating your word counts for the win on NaNoWriMo and I'm going to go for it. I've already written 6000 words today, so what's 7000 more. Of course, this is only if I don't kill me kids because they're tired, bouncy, noisy and generally draining of one's energy. *grin* Seeing as how I'm rather attached to them, having created them out of the stuff of my own body and all, I'm really hoping it doesn't come to that.

So, off to write. If you're actually reading this soon after posting, just keep an eye on the little widget over to the right and watch my word count grow.

Oh, and this won't finish the novel, but I think I've managed to accomplish the goals I set for myself back when I started. This is good. It means the novel WILL get finished and hopefully I'll be able to do something with it. My good friend Kate has been helping keep me on track, as she's been reading my weekly output. And then she hands it back asking for more.

Right now my wish for all of you is that you find the courage to go after something you want in your life. I've been wanting to write for a very long time. And I've done short stuff. I've even been paid for my stuff. But this, this was hard, folks. I had to dig deep to start it, and even then it was baby steps all the way. Until this month, when it's just taken off. I can't wait to finish and see what happens.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Big Day

Holy keyboards, I just had a 5000 word day! And I'm at the halfway point for a NaNo win. I'm all giddy with excitement....or maybe a lack of sleep. So, I'm off to bed, where the story will no doubt continue to insinuate itself into my dreams.

Oh, and sorry about any typos. My fingers are starting to wrap themselves in knots, they're trying to move so fast on the keyboard.

Ah, just look at that little word count widget over on the right. Ain't it a beautiful thing?

Night all!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Just a Quickie

Just a quick update on my progress. I'm almost caught up to where I should be in order to stay on target. Only a little over 1000 words to go. It's rather exciting to look down (or look over on the widget) and see my word count climbing. Kate is snuggled in upstairs reading what is a very rough draft - some of it for the second time. Talk about a best friend!

Tomorrow I'm off to my first writer's conference. It's a small affair in Zanesville that I'm really looking forward to.

Words produced today: about 3000 so far. I'll manage more if I don't manage to sleep. 6 am comes early to this night owl.

Happy weekend, folks. Hope it's a good one for all of you.


Thursday, November 6, 2008

Writing Update

Well, it's midnight. Time to get some sleep for the new day tomorrow. As you can see from the widget-thingie, I passed the 5000 mark today. Actually, I passed it at 10-something tonight. For a reward, Kate and I ran down to the gas station where I presented myself an ice cream sundae cone, with brownie bits, and a bottle of Diet Pepsi Max. Since I only drank half of it, I'll have something to look forward to in the morning.

Total word count for today: a little over 4000.

I might just manage this after all.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Election

I voted yesterday, with my daughters in tow, certain that this year my vote would count. The last couple of Presidental elections have left me feeling like it really was a waste of my time. This year was so different. At the same time, I held my breath waiting to see who the other side would try to steal the outcome from us once again. It didn't happen.

Summing up how yesterday's election made me feel has been impossible. However, author Cherie Priest did a marvelous job in this post on her blog, so I'm just going to link to it and get back to working on my novel. It might be a lame excuse, but there it is.

Catching Up

I need a break from the computer for a little bit. Both girls were home from school today with a tummy bug. Poor Monkey Girl looks absolutely angelic asleep on our bed. The Drama Queen even took a two hour nap, which is how I know she really wasn't feeling well. She's playing Harvest Moon on the Wii right now. When I've actually sat down to write today it's gone really well. I'm almost done with this scene. But first a break.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Behind, As Usual

Well, there was no start Friday night at midnight. I was just too fried. I tried taking a nap, but when the alarm went off, I just rolled over and went back to sleep. The Drama Queen's birthday party on Saturday was lots of fun though. The Kate and Monkey Girl went together and bought her an mp3 player. Mr. Incredible and I gave her a wolf statue and a Jonas Brothers cd. My sister provided a Vanessa Hudguns cd. She was a very happy girl. She got some other stuff as well, although those were the biggies. And my mom and paternal grandmother made it as well. :) None of her classmates came, which is annoying, but she still had a good time. Corvus, the ML for our region of NaNo, came with his family. Their three-year old son had the best time just running around the back yard.

However, there was no writing until a little after midnight that night. I got a whopping 188 words started. Yeah me! I broke the thousand word mark yesterday, but it was such tough going that I'm probably going to scrap it all and pretty much completely re-write what I've got for that scene. I can handle some bad stuff - it's a rough draft after all - but this was truly, truly awful. When you have to force the writing that hard, it's time to take a step back, look at the scene again, and figure out how you need to change what you're doing to make the writing happen. I think I'm there, so when I get to the scene either later today or tomorrow, I'll be able to get it down in type. I've got a little over 1700 so far today and it's been flowing really well. What I wound up doing was just jumping ahead to the next scene. What I was writing yesterday is going to come after this bit. It'll be better. Oh, and I went back and wrote what I'd started writing in the spring, at least the stuff for this chapter. It really helped me find Lilly's voice again. (When I get a chance, I'll post a character work-up for her on here.)

Right now, I'm taking a break, grabbing a bath while thinking over what comes next, and then getting my kids from school. They've both decided to do the Young Writers challenge on NaNo ad we're going to start typing what they've got written up so far. It'll be fun

Friday, October 31, 2008

Countdown Starts

Okay, there's a little over 3 hours until NaNo officially starts in my time zone. Folks are already scribbling away on the other side of the globe. (Funny, we were discussing getting rid of some VERY outdated globes at the library today...) Will I still be awake at midnight? Probably. Will I still be coherent enough to write? I'm not sure. I still have a bit of cleaning and prep work to do for Ro's birthday party tomorrow.

Yeah, my eldest was officially a tween as of 12:51 this afternoon. My mother and Mr. Incredible's parents will be here. AND Jake, The Kate's puppy is still enjoying going on the carpet in the dining room. I got that steam cleaned last night, though. And with the nice weather we've had the last few days, we should be able to do most of the party outside. Yeah!

Okay, time for more pizza!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Winter Book Club

One of the wonderful things about the internet is all the people you get to meet. And while I know there are some out there who live out a fantasy life online, most of us are just what we seem to be. Thanks to my girls' love of Animal Ark books and a lovely little site called BookMooch, I met a wonderful young woman who later invited me to join her summer online book club. Keep in mind that I'm the oldest on the list. Many of the others are in their teens or early twenties.

After thinking it over for a little bit, I thought why not? I've never read chick lit, which is what the first round of books included. I never really thought of myself as a 'chick lit' kinda girl, but ya know what? I enjoyed myself, got to see what sorts of things were important to females a good bit younger than me, and tried some a new genre of literature.

So, Bookworm's Corner is getting ready to start up for winter. Come join us! It's always much more fun to discuss books when there's more than 3 people involved.

Salad for Your Hair!

So, those neat products I talked about in the last post sound great, but what to do if it's not near payday and you really can't/don't want to shell out $30 for a fancy comb? White vinegar and olive oil, my friends. Personally, I'd start with the olive oil treatment because picking someone' s hair while there's lots moving around just gives me the willies.

Start by working a good measure of olive oil into the hair all the way down to the scalp. While you don't want rivers of the oil running off the victim's head, you do want enough to smother any little bugs. And it needs to be all the way down to the scalp to make sure you've got maximum coverage. Now, slip on a cheap-o plastic shower cap, or swimming cap, and let it sit for at about 6 /12 hours. Lice can go into a form of hibernation that will let them survive without air for 5 to 6 hours.

You can probably try combing the hair out with a lice comb at this point. I honestly never thought to try it because I just assumed the combs wouldn't get the eggs. Both of my girls have very fine hair and the lice combs weren't getting anything out while their hair was dry. However, after dealing with the LiceMD, I'm wondering if the oil would help the combs pick up the eggs. If anyone's unfortunate enough to need to do this a) you have all my sympathy and b) let me know how well it works if you trying combing it out with the oil in.

Next you need to wash and dry the hair. Regardless of what you've probably read online about washing oil out of hair, olive oil is a component in several shampoos and lathers up really, really well. Washing it out isn't all that difficult.

Vinegar helps dissolve the cement (lice spit) that's holding the eggs attached to the hair shafts. I would saturate the girls' hair with it and then leave it on for about an hour to work it's magic. Then wash and blow dry.

Finally, you'll need to go to work picking out the eggs that might be left behind. Work in really good light and with small sections of hair at a time. A pair of magnifying, or reading, glasses really help. Also, I used clips to hold hair out of my way.

Wash the bedding and toss pillows, stuffies, etc... into the dryer on high heat for at least 15 minutes. Clothes that have been worn need to be washed as well. Anything that's been taken on and off over the head, even if they only had it on for a few minutes, needs to get washed. (Monkey Girl got really tired of hearing, "Okay, now go put it in the wash.")

Combs, brushes, and clips can go into hot, soapy water for at least 10 minutes. If there are hair scrunchies or other accessories that can't be soaked in water, bag them and toss 'em in the freeze for a couple of days.

The most important part of this process is the actual nitpicking. It's not easy, for you or your child, but it's also not something you can skimp on. Unfortunately. All of the tricks in both of these posts help make the picking easier, but it's still the main thing you'll have to do. Try to stay upbeat for your child's sake, take breaks now and then, and well, hugging each other always good.

Good luck!

Monday, October 27, 2008

%^&*# Bugs

Well, we thought the bugs were gone, until last Monday when The Drama Queen asked me to check her hair. She was absolutely crawling with the little pests. (Is your head itching yet?) It was worse than Monkey Girl's hair had been. Soooo, we tried olive oil, and we did vinegar, and while I'm sure these will work on mild cases of infestation, it didn't with Drama Queen. There was just so much to get out of her hair. Fortunately Wednesday was payday, so Thursday saw me shelling out some money for lice treatment toys. And while I'm still a proponent of the cheaper, no chemical method, this was money well spent.

First off, we bought a RobiComb. This was the pricey toy, at $29.95, but it really was money well spent. And it's kinda fun to use. It's an interesting bug zapper for your head. Run on a AAA battery, the comb emits a high-pitched buzzing sound that stops when it encounters a louse. This is because it's zapped the little bastard and is now waiting for you to clean out the comb's teeth with the stiff little brush included. I did this into a bowl of water. The comb only immobilizes the louse, although it should die in a few hours. The only catch to the RobiComb is that it doesn't zap the eggs. Apparently they don't have a central nervous system until after hatching, so there's nothing to zap.

So, she was still full of eggs. Actually, when the school nurse checked her hair it looked like it hadn't been picked AT ALL. Yeah, she was that bad. Off we went in search of something that might make it easier to comb out eggs. What we found was called LiceMD, which is a non-pesticide goop that loosens the eggs, making them easier to comb out. Yes! The big concern was that the comb included wouldn't be able to clean eggs off of Ro's extremely fine hair. So, we gooped it up and let it sit while I went and picked up her sister from school. (It needs to be on your hair for 10 minutes. Any longer and it starts to itch.) We combed out so many eggs it was kinda scary. After a hair wash and blow-dry, her father picked her hair again.

Now, the nurse did still pick a few eggs out of her hair the next morning, but not enough to keep her out of school any longer. YES!!!! We were both doing the Happy Dance. Drama Queen got dropped off and they did a routine check on Monkey Girl's hair while I was there...home she came. After a week of picking and soaking and picking and, well, you get the idea. I almost cried. Monkey Girl was even closer to crying. She did not want to come home. Long story short, we did the LiceMD on her...and the RobiComb as well. Both girls were back in school today, I've a mound of laundry, and they've a very clean room, thanks to their father. Oh, and we took out the love seat since the consensus was that it was the source of everyone getting lice. (Yeah, The Kate needed her hair treated as well.)

Cross your fingers for us. Please?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Idol Pursuits

So, next month I'm partaking in National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. The whole concept is to write a short novel (50,000) during the month. I'm hoping to use it to restart work on a novel I started back in May before school let out. Hopefully, this little experiment next month will a) get a BIG chunk of my novel finished and b) get me into a writing habit/routine. It also means that I've been spending lots of time with my story this month, getting an outline and really learning my characters.

One of the challenges I tackled, thanks to this man's webpage, is to sum up the novel in one sentence. I didn't quite bring it in at under 15 words, but it's still a good sentence. And I'm about to share it with whomever reads this little blog, because I intend to write about NaNo for the coming month plus. Aren't we all lucky?

Idol Pursuits:
Quiet bookstore clerk wants employer's killer brought to justice without becoming his sacrifice to an unholy idol.

Aren't ya all a'quiver? More to follow....

Today's Bliss

So, I was out walking my best friend's puppy around the backyard and what did I come across? In OCTOBER!?! Honeysuckle in bloom! I know it's been warm lately, but blooming honeysuckle in mid-October? Heavenly. I love the smell of honeysuckle.

And a thank you to Chris Dunmire, of Creativity Portal, for letting me use her Cowpyright Cow on my blog. Check out more about copyright and the internet here.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Book Title

The book I started back in May, that'll be restarting next month for NaNoWriMo, finally has a title I'm not embarrassed to tell anyone: Idol Pursuits. This is a happy moment as I write much better with a working title. And Deadly Immortality was just too...too...too much of something and not enough of something else. It sums up the story, but it's just, well, I'm just to embarrassed to mention that I'm writing something with a title that colorful.

Monday, October 6, 2008

GLBT History Month

This is just a quickie, but apparently October is also GLBT History Month. Our local university has a GLBT campus organization that is marking this week as GLBT week, culminating in National Coming Out Day, this Saturday. Here's an interesting site link from them. Check it out!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Okay, proof that I'm a nerd...

I really am going to write a real post, hopefully detailing how to kick the nits, ummm, tomorrow... but in the meantime, I was taking a mission over on pmog and came across this website testing how nerdy I was. (That's a horribly written sentence, but I'm sticking with it!) says I'm a Cool Nerd Queen.  What are you?  Click here!

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Still Battling Pests

We're still battling the little buggers, but we're getting there. I'm really hoping Monkey Girl is back in school come Tuesday. In the meantime, while looking for distractions online, I stumbled across this little quiz and felt a need to share.

You Should Have a Purple Christmas Tree

For you, the holidays represent a time of creativity and expression.

There's no way you'd do something bland simply for tradition's sake.

You are an independent person, and you definitely do the holidays your own way.

And you're decadent enough to go way over the top with any unusual holiday ideas you have.

Your purple tree would look great with: Purple lights and ornaments

You should spend Christmas Eve watching: A Christmas Story

What you should bake for Santa: "Kitchen sink" cookies - with a ton of things in them

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Dreaded Pest Invasion

Yep, we got's 'em. Lice that is. The first day of school was this Tuesday. Monkey Girl made it all of an hour and a half before I got the call. The Drama Queen was also waiting when I got there. Home we go, where we wait until The Kate, the housemate, gets home with some Tea Tree oil. Into the shampoo it goes. Kids get scrubbed and then nit combed. While waiting on The Kate, pillows and blankets get hot washed.
Next morning the school nurse checks them over again. Still bugs. Actually, they're pretty bad. Especially in poor Monkey Girl's hair. Home we come again. At lunch, thinking what to do, I call my sister, the PA. "Try Crisco and a vinegar rinse," she suggests.This is after I let her know that I really don't want to do the harsh chemicals if I can avoid it. She's a good sis.(So is The Kate, who's my best friend, by the way.)

So, I get out what's left of the Crisco and plop Monkey Girl down in a kitchen chair. Our friend Levi, who's stopped by to chat, is clearly amused by the process. Monkey Girl is giggling and laughing. I was going to wrap her hair in an old shirt, but she suggests a plastic grocery bag. Levi suggests duct tape to hold it on. That got big grins. We did use packing tape. And there was much more laughter at the knowledge that my cousin made her daughter wear underwear on her head to protect everything from the oils.

The Drama Queen is next, but she decided to hide. I point out that if we don't do it now, she'll have to have it in her hair ALL night. She appears pretty danged fast and into the chair she goes. The only problem is that I'm pretty much out of Crisco and she's got A LOT of hair. It's cut in a shorter bob, but there's still a ton of it. Sooooo, out comes my little squirreled away bottle of olive oil and to work we go, finishing up with the lovely shopping bag treatment.

Now, all they have to do is sit and try not to scratch and squirm the bags off of their heads. For, oh, 5 hours or so. Making the best of a funny situation, they head upstairs to play doctors with their stuffies who have suddenly developed their own annoying cases of lice. The rational, other than their own little bugs? Doctors wear caps like that on their heads. Have I said on here that I really do love my kids? Well, I do. They were great about the bags and the oily heads for pretty much the whole time.

After dinner, it's into the shower with mom, Monkey Girl getting to go first. Shampoo out the Crisco. Pour on uncut apple cider vinegar. Listen to complaints because a. it's really cold and b. it smells really strong. Rinse vinegar. Shampoo again. Send out to Daddy to get nit combed. In comes Drama Queen, where I repeat the above process with the addition of many squeals and shrieks. Loud squeals and shrieks. One of these days, I really am going to need that hearing aid.

Anyway, out she goes to wait for Daddy's attention with the comb. I'm out the door for some very needed alone time, even if it is spent running errands. (I'm sorry for the extra work, Mandi. If I'd only known!) I get back about an hour and a half later and Mr. Incredible has just finished up with their hair. They can't get over how soft it is, thanks to the oil treatments and the vinegar. Many smiles occur. Pillows are found for the night, as I'd put the character pillows that they normally sleep with in the freezer.

Today's head check STILL found nits on Monkey Girl, but a teeny-tiny hatchling. *sigh* The Drama Queen got the all clear though. I came home, hit the internet for what oils might help and discovered this page: . It's got me thinking that the olive oil was what really did the trick for Drama Queen. Right now, Monkey Girl and I are sitting around with plastic shower caps on our heads - the olive oil sinking in and doing it's trick. Why am I doing this? Because my head has itched like crazy since last night, it needs washed, and I'm going to be paranoid otherwise. And it makes Monkey Girl feel better.

Hopefully this will take care of the problem. I'll post back tomorrow and let ya'll know. (Yeah, I like pretending there's an audience out there! :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Headaches and Deadlines

Some point every summer, I regret pitching article ideas to Llewellyn. My kids are home being a distraction and as hurricane season hits, my head aches almost non-stop. I live in Ohio, so you can hopefully appreciate that last bit. How a tropical storm forming off the coast can affect my own sinus system here in Ohio is something I'll never understand. I'm too busy being out of it with the pain. You would think writing would be impossible. I spend chunks of the day as my deadlines approach thinking the same thing. And then, miraculously, I manage to get them finished. I have one remaining article to proof and it's over for the year.

As for my kids being home, well, they've actually been pretty good about letting me work this year. Probably my biggest distraction is feeling guilty over not spending much time with them during the day. But the truth there is that they really just want me to let them go off and play their games, or swim in the pool, or watch tv. Sometimes, my youngest, Monkey Girl, who's 8, is bored and wants me to play a game with her or to go sit and watch her in the pool. Unfortunately, that's usually when I'm in the middle of something, but we manage to work it out. Most of the quilt is all in my head. Wonder how many of us suffer from that - imagined guilt?

And as for the writing? I honestly enjoy it or I wouldn't still be doing it. There's a challenge in finding something new to write about each year. Something that no one else has done lately, or even done at all. And it's a fun challenge to put my unique voice on an often short article, to make it mine. So I guess I'll keep writing for them as long as they let me.

Friday, July 25, 2008


Hello and welcome to my little blog, Post Number 1. I've been itching for awhile to perhaps actually start one of these. Ya know, being a writer, I should have some writing out there, like a blog. Of course, now that I've got one, I can't remember anything interesting that I wanted to write about. Aren't first posts a bitch?

Stick around, please, as I figure out how the blog thing works. Second posts, and especially third posts, are usually much more interesting. All of the introductive things are out of the way and we can get down to the fun.