Friday, November 27, 2009

Black Friday

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Hell must have frozen over because this is the first Black Friday in years I haven't been at the stores when they opened. I barely scanned the ads last night. No lists, no game plan, no laying out my clothes ahead of time. Hubby couldn't believe it since this is one of my favorite days of the year.

Not today though.

With the book due on Tuesday, I knew I wouldn't have all day to shop as I normally do, but I thought I'd pick one store and at least see if I could get a couple of things on sale. But by Thanksgiving night, after I'd done some of the dishes and was back at my computer struggling to write, I realized I was getting sick. Yeah, sick.

Pretty soon it hurt to swallow. My remedy of hot tea, lemon and honey did nothing to help. I popped a couple of Advil, some Vitamin D and crawled into bed even though I probably should have been writing. This morning I woke up congested. My head feels like it's going to explode.

It completely sucks. I am so ready for 2009 to go away. I want a healthy 2010.

I should probably be in bed, but I'm at my computer instead. I've needed too many extensions this year. I really don't want to have to ask for another one. I'll get this book finished somehow and when I turn it in, I'll tell my editor it's going to need revisions. Because it will unless the writer fairies pay me a visit tonight while I sleep and work their magic on the the manuscript.

Did you go shopping today? If so, what did you buy?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

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Hope you have a great Thanksgiving!

We'll have fourteen here for dinner. I'm mainly using the menu I found on the Martha Stewart website, which includes a couple things I've never tried before: Tarragon Green Beans and Twice-Baked Sweet Potatoes. The only things I'm substituting/adding fis this crockpot stuffing recipe, peas (kidlets' favorite) and our regular cranberry sauce recipe.

Last night I made a couple of dishes, prepared and cut veggies and found all my linens. Of course, I realized I'd forgotten a few things on the grocery list I'd given hubby. He did all the shopping this year so I could write. That means a quick trip to the grocery store this morning.

I hope you enjoy yourselves with family and friends and good food!


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Crossfit Kitty

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This cracked me up thinking about the Crossfit Challenges we did here on the blog earlier this year! I know I've felt that way though not after two sit-ups. More like eighty-two!

Writing. Panicking. Writing some more.

The manuscript is due a week from today. Deep breath.

Hope you have a great Tuesday!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday Musings

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I'm home! Very happy to be back. It was very tiring, but worth it. My daughter and I had so much fun together. I love having her all to myself. We had dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe and lunch at Bubba Gumps. We saw New Moon on Saturday. We never go to first run movies so that was a treat for both of us. She swam with her friends and ran around with them at the Denver convention center.

It was so cute to hear all the sighs and/or sharp intakes of air whenever Jacob Black/Taylor Lautner appeared on screen (usually shirtless.) He's one of my daughter's crushes. I have to admit I'm Team Jacob. I've already posted my thoughts on the Twilight books, and this movie did nothing to change my mind. The pace picks up whenever the movie deals with Jacob and his werewolf brothers, but plods along whenever it's about the blood suckers or Bella. Exactly the way I felt with the book.

Thanks for all the good thoughts and wishes for my daughter's dancing. She didn't reach the goal she set. That was so hard on her, but there's always next year. I must admit though, I'm ready to be done with Irish dancing. There are a few parts of it that I really don't care for. If the kidlets said they wanted to quit today, I wouldn't try to change their minds. But it's their decision to make, not mine.

Well, I need to get writing. That December 1st is looming heavily on me. I still haven't caught up which means crazy times ahead.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Friday, November 20, 2009


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I thought this LOLcat was so cute! It's also true. That's what friends do! Yesterday, the other Irish dance moms were making sure I didn't overdo it. Our hotel room wasn't ready so two different people offered the use of theirs. One even took my daughter out so I could relax and writer. Another carried my laptop bag because she thought it was too heavy for me! So sweet!

In case you haven't guessed, I'm in Denver with my daughter. She dances this morning! She's excited and nervous. She has a goal, and I'm hoping she reaches it.

We got a new laptop for the kids to use (love those pre-Black Friday sales this year!), and I brought it with me so I can work. The only problem is it's a HP. I'm not a PC person. I'm a Mac user. I really miss my iBook, and am finding it easier to just write by hand. I'll input it all when I get home and can use a computer I'm more comfortable with.

That's about all from the beautiful state of Colorado! Hope you have a great Friday and an even better weekend!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Random Wednesday

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Three of my cats feel this way about us. Yoda is still in the honeymoon isn't everything great let's go with the flow stage. Chaos is a dog so we are her world and the smartest people around. Dogs are so great!

I see the surgeon today for a follow-up. I am feeling so much better. Yay!

With so much going on with writing and Thanksgiving (I'm hosting this year), I'm slowing down blogging and blog-hopping. I'll try to post of Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays. I have so much writing, cleaning and other catching up to do I have to just get it done now. Once the book is in and things slow down, I'll go back to normal every weekday blogging. I just really need to get caught up so I can get the book in on time. I hope to do a blog giveaway for the holiday if I can get things done and figured out.

Mackenna is getting ready to compete at the Western Regionals for Irish dance. They are in Denver this year. She's very excited. I hope she does as well as last year, but you just never know what will happen. The real thing I want for her to take out of this is the experience, to be surrounded by Irish dancers and to have fun with friends, old and new.

Better get to work!

Have a great day!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Kitty love

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Everyone wants to hold Yoda, but the kitty finally has free run of the house though and is enjoying his freedom. He tears all over the place as fast as his little paws will carry him.

He also wakes up with any noise which means lots of middle of the night toe attacks and running around. He wears a little bell around his neck so we can find him. That thing doesn't stop jingling unless he's in our arms or asleep!

Like the other animals, he likes being in the master bedroom. We brought in a tree from the toy room for him to play in. The kidlets use this with their stuffed animals, but it's the perfect size for a new kitty.

I wasn't sure if he would like it, but we've found him napping in the bottom hole. We also gave him a little help to get into the top hole. It's pretty small in there, but very cozy for a kitty. He even took a cat nap in there!

When I got home from the store yesterday, I found Smalls and Spirit on top of the bed and Rocket and Yoda under the bed (opposite ends, of course.)

The poor cats don't know what to make of Yoda. He stalks them in an attempt to get them to play with him which leads to hissing, spitting and annoying looks. The three were upset when Chaos arrived, but I think this small black kitty might be even more annoying to them. Smalls bopped him on the head this weekend with her paw. Guess she'd had enough.

Chaos can't get enough of Yoda. She keeps licking him. She licks everyone she loves so this is a very good thing. Yoda isn't quite sure yet, though he likes how warm and soft she is. He also likes to bite and play with her paws and tail. I'm happy Chaos finally has a friend. It'll be interesting to see how things evolve as Yoda gets older.

Hope you have a great Monday!

Friday, November 13, 2009


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Last night I was putting together the activity for the kid book club I do on Fridays. The book we're reading this week is Jan Brett's The Mitten. The craft is one I found on her website where you color the animals from the story and put them in a mitten you make. Of course, I had to make it a little more complicated. Instead of pasting the two mitten halves together, I'm having the kids lace them.

Sounds easy, right? Until I realized I had no white yarn. A quick run to Michaels solved that.

I was busy writing though so I waited until last night to get everything together. I printed and cut the mittens. And then realized I had a very big problem. I couldn't find my hole puncher. Argh! At 9 pm, poor hubby drove to Walmart and bought one for me. I whole punched the first mitten, but it was hard on my hands so he did the other nine. A real romance hero, I'm telling you!

The cats loved all the strings of yarn I'd cut. They thought it was Christmas!

I'll post pics of the kitty this weekend. I'll have more time then, plus my card reader walked away! I can't believe how much Yoda has grown already.

Hope you have a great Friday!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Life with a kitty

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This picture is exactly how things are with Yoda. He's become very comfortable at the house, and yes, he keeps getting into mischief. The active and adventurous life of a kitty! You should see him try, emphasis on try, to get the cats to play with him. Lots of growls and hisses, but they know better than do to anything else to him. The other cats want nothing to do with him! And then there's Chaos who lets Yoda claw and bite her legs and do whatever he wants to her!

I have more pictures I'll post later this week. Maybe on Friday.

Right now, I'm concentrating on writing. I have a book due on the 1st and am trying to get caught up on pages. The surgery and recovery really affected my Plan, as did the couple of days before hand due to the pain. I'm still in pretty good shape though since I'd worked really hard polishing the first part of the book and wrote a lot of the last part of the book as part of NaNoWriMo. A weird thing about this story is the chapters are turning out with more words than normal. The last couple of books have had 12 chapters. This one may be only ten, possibly eleven, if the word count keeps up!

I'm dropping out of NaNoWriMo completely so no more update posts once I give official notice on the JaNoWriMo blog. Calculating word counts just takes too much time I don't have at the moment. At least I gave it a shot as I do every year. I need to go back to the Plan. That's what kept me on track before. I know it will work again.

Hope you have a great Wednesday. I cancelled everything today so I could stay home and continue to rest. The less I do, the better I feel. Funny how it works that way!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Baby Yoda

My daughters found a new way to play with Yoda ths weekend. He fits perfectly in their Bitty Baby baby carrier, crib and stroller!

The girls were absolutely delighted with their "baby." Yoda loved being carried around. He even liked being pushed in the baby stroller.

Yoda loved the crib. The mobile spins and he could bat at it with is paws. If you look closely at the picture, you'll see a ball of green yarn. They wanted to make sure he wasn't bored.

Once they were finished playing, they swaddled Yoda in a blanket and brought him downstairs. I heard hubby tell them to let the cat walk around a little. I have a feeling we're going to have one spoiled kitty on our hands.

Before I forget, Yoda and Chaos are getting along better! Chaos seems a little scared of the kitten, but actually licked Yoda's head yesterday. Hubby wondered if she was wanting a taste sample! The kidlets, however, assured me it was a kiss!

Hope you have a great Monday! My incisions are still bruised and hurting, but I feel a lot better with my gallbladder out!

Saturday, November 07, 2009


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Thanks for all the prayers, good thoughts and get well wishes! I went into the surgery not knowing for certain if it was my gallbladder causing the problems. I was pretty sure it was, and all the test results seemed to indicate it wasn't something else. My two doctors thought thought it probably was, too, but they couldn't be certain. Once the surgeon got in there and saw just how bad it looked, he feels it was the culprit! I won't gross you out with the description, but my gallbladder needed to come out!

The four incisions in my abdomen hurt, but I'll take that over the 24/7 nausea and random painful attacks I've had since August. I'd forgotten how it felt to feel well...normal! But I'm not going to rush it or try to do too much too soon. I plan to take it easy all weekend and recover!

I hope to be back on-line and what not by Monday! But I'll play it by ear.

Hope you have a great weekend. And thanks again!


Friday, November 06, 2009

Honest Scrap Award

Dru tagged me for the Honest Scrap award. Thank you!

The rules are as follows: Thank the blogger who awarded you, and then list 10 honest things about yourself. Choose 7 other blogs to receive the award, and inform the bloggers that you've chosen them.

1. I'm not all that athletic and was usually one of the last people chosen for a team in school. I was always afraid of the ball except in basketball and tennis. Those were the two sports I could actually play decently. But as an adult, I fell in love with snow skiing and hiking. A couple of years ago, I discovered rock climbing and Crossfit. I only wish I'd found them sooner. But I've learned it's never too late to start anything!

2. I'm not that competitive a person except when it comes to games. It doesn't matter if it's cards or board games I like to win! It's a big joke among the people we play games with!

3. I have a lot of acquaintance type friends, but few close friends. I've always had more male friends than girlfriends. I think the reason might be I'm more guy-like with my friendships. If a girlfriend is having a problem I'll give her about a minute of sympathy than suggest solutions to fix her problem!

4. I love to cook, but I hate to clean up. I abhor doing dishes so I sometimes find it easier not to cook to avoid having to do them. When hubby is out of town, we use paper plates! Sad, but true!

5. Attending RWA National conference (or any other similar type large event) is very overwhelming for me. I'm used to being surrounded by kids and animals or on my own writing. I'm not a big crowd or party person at all.

6. Even if I never sold another book, I would continue to write. I don't think I could stop even if I wanted to!

7. Once in awhile, particularly around deadline time, it's hard for me to carry on real-life conversations because of the book playing in my head. I'm sure people think I'm rude or have no social manners, but it's like watching a movie is playing in my head and it's impossible to ignore! This might explain #3!

8. I love movies. I've always wanted to be a screenwriter. I was even writing a screenplay when I sold my first book. The manuscript had been there for so long (it took seventeen months to get The Call) so I'd actually given up on the romance genre to give Hollywood a try.

9. I don't miss watching television. I often don't have any idea what people are blogging or talking about, but I've gotten used it. Time is too precious for me, and if I'm going to take the time to watch something it'll be with the kidlets. If there's a really good show I want to see all the episodes of (like Castle) I can always get it on DVD!

10. There was a point in my life when I didn't really care if I had children or not, but my three kidlets are what I'm most proud of in my life. The three can push my buttons like no others. They aren't perfect, but neither am I. They surprise me each and every day. I can't believe what incredible human beings they are. I've learned so much from them! I am so blessed to have them in my life.

I'm tagging my good bud Elizabeth Boyle for this. Everyone else I would tag has already done it!

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Halloween Kitty

My eleven year old daughter took this series of shots yesterday with Yoda. It's so typical of a kitten!

Cool! I get my picture taken. Wonder if they'll pick me up if I act cute.

My "act adorable" pose didn't work. Maybe this one will...


I'm tired. Would someone please pick me up?


We are all totally in love with Yoda. Even hubby though he'd never admit it!

I'm getting my gallbladder out today. I've been feeling poorly since August and it's really gotten bad the last few weeks. They aren't sure this will make me better, but they've pretty much tested and ruled out everything else so I'm very hopeful! Anyway, I need to take it easy so if you don't see me on-line in my usual places, that's why.

Also, Dru gave me the Honest Scrap award earlier this week so I finally managed to do my part and preloaded it for tomorrow's blog!

Take care!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Fairy Chaos

Last year our Norwegian Elkhound Chaos dressed up as Super Dog. This year she was a fairy. The wings were all we could keep on her, but she didn't seem to mind wearing them all that much on her jaunt around the neighborhood with a crazy girl, ninja and wizard Alex Russo.

Unfortunately Hubby wasn't feeling well on Saturday so didn't take the usual posed Halloween pics before trick or treating. I reminded him when they got home we needed a couple of shots. By then, however, my oldest was at our neighbor's house changing out of her costume. So this is the best photo we got. Of anybody who went out that night. Sigh...

Hope you have a good Wednesday! Mine will be insane as ever!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Yoda Pics!

Hubby found my card reader! Unfortunately all the really good pictures have the kidlets with the kitten so I'll be sure to take more of the kitty only tonight. Here are a couple from his first night at our house.

When we first put him into the study, he climbed on top of the books on the bottom self of the book case and squeezed behind them. We had to take out books to find him. Once he was out, I pushed all the books back so there wasn't space for him back there!

Here he is underneath a chair, trying to figure out what is going on. He didn't know quite what to make of everything, but is really settling in today!

We are having so much fun with him! He's such a little sweetie!

Not Yet!

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I have searched everywhere for my card reader. I can't find it anywhere. The house is actually clean, too. So it should have shown up during the cleaning process. There's one place left to look so I'll do that once I get some pages written.

Yoda is acclimating to the house. He seems to feel comfortable his safe room, the study. We extended the gate to include the foyer. It's round and gives him more room to run, plus then if he stands at the gate, he can see us.

Last night he was with us in the Great Room. Poor Chaos. She wants to be with the kitty so bad, but he just spits and hisses. Now Chaos is scared of it. The dog actually cowers. Sigh... I'm hoping this is temporary, but who knows. Yoda's litter was attacked by a dog. Two of his siblings were killed in the attack. Yoda was hurt. He was bald from it which is where his name came from. (His hair has grown back!)

I doubt the three older cats will accept Yoda, but they mainly stay upstairs in my bedroom so it shouldn't be a problem. We won't try to introduce them for a few more days. I did rub a towel over the three kitties fur and that's what Yoda is sleeping on. But Smalls came inside over four years ago, and the other two stiill don't get along with her.

It's fun to have a kitten in the house. But I can't believe how one tiny little creature can change so many things. The kids are head over heels in love with it. I have to remind them to let it walk. Otherwise they'd carry him everywhere. Yoda is your typical kitten, playful with no fear. The goal is to keep him from hurting himself.

I was writing yesterday morning when I noticed Chaos laying on the floor and staring into my bathroom. She'd never done anything like that before so I decided to check it out. Behind the toilet I saw two little eyes. I glanced at the bed and did a quick count. Three cats. Uh-oh. I flipped on the light and saw Yoda. He had somehow escaped from the study, made it past the kidlets eating breakfast and found his way upstairs to the master bath.

I don't think I mentioned this since it's been all kitty all the time, but I'm doing NaNoWriMo this month. If you want to see my progress go to the JanoWriMo blog or you can buddy me at the NaNo site. My user name is melmcclone.

Monday, November 02, 2009


We adopted a 12 week old black kitten named Yoda on Halloween. I'd run into Pet Smart to grab something when my daughter noticed they were having a black cat adoption day and wanted to look at the cats. I had a black cat when I was in high school and college. He was an amazing cat so I thought of Dupree as we were looking at all the cats.

I saw Yoda's picture, but the cage was empty. I figured he'd already been adopted since he was the only kitten I saw there, but nope, his foster mom was holding him.

We fell in love with him.

I bought what I needed then we ran home and got the rest of the family including Chaos and returned to Pet Smart. We decided to adopt him. He was delivered by his foster mom last night. He's currently in my office with a baby gate across it (no door). The kidlets slept on the floor in there last night so he wouldn't be alone.

The last thing I need is a kitten, but we just couldn't leave him there. The Humane Society found homes for four black cats on Halloween. The others were older cats. A good day for everyone!

As soon as I find my card reader, I'll post pics!

Have a great Monday!