About Me

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Change. I've learned to embrace it, ride it out til the end. Sometimes I'm kicking and screaming, other times weeping with my eyes clinched tight. Once in awhile I ride like a dog in a car, head out the window snorting what life has to offer. Mother to young adult children, a marriage of thirty years, and a desert to mountain to valley waltz with God have shaped me into someone I never imagined I'd be. Life is short and I want to live it. Tears, sighs, laughter and change. Every morsel granted to me. Scrambled, shaken or stirred.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Music to My Ears.

In honor of the upcoming fall holidays my van has developed a new style of vocalization.

Nothing serious I hope. I believe there is a piece of paper or fabric caught in my blower fan.

At random times, a shriek that could wake the dead sounds from the passenger side of the vehicle. Creepy by day and hair-raisingly eerie by night.

I’m glad I don’t believe in the possibility of zombies.

If there was such a thing, it would sound just like my van.

Other random trips around town find the fan clucking and gobbling like a turkey.

Both scintillating stylings add another element of fun while on the road.

Heavy metal music, for me, births homicidal thoughts. Trust me when I say that screaming zombies or turkey crescendos do the same when I encounter an illegal left hand turner or tailgater.

I suppose I should offer my van to Hollywood in case they need some really great turkey and/or zombie noises.

So here goes. If any of you are looking for some realistic, yet fresh and new, zombie or turkey voices, let me know. For a small fee, you too could enjoy authentic sounds for the fall holidays.

Suppose I could get the van to backfire “Ho,Ho,Ho?”

Monday, October 30, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - The Visitor

Thanks for all your excellent name ideas. I will percolate these over and over in my brain until I just randomly choose one. Though a couple of you suggested Kelly as a great character name…I agree…though I’m afraid in my caffeine induced catatonic moments while producing word after word to meet a self-imposed deadline – the use of the name Kelly in my manuscript could cause severe confusion resulting in brain damage. (don’t say it) Can you believe that the previous sentence did not receive a grammar tag from Word? Wow.

When I begin to post snippets of my story…you’ll see what name I decide to choose. Or I may ramble in a moment of angst…and beg for more ideas. Who knows. Maybe I’ll even change my quirky coffee loving character into a man. Fortunately NaNoWriMo doesn’t require good writing, just words.

Because Halloween is tomorrow…I have a gruesome, little snippet to share…I can’t resist.

This disgusting and revolting gift idea is brought to you by my cat. Her given name is Blackie, but I’m going to have it legally changed to Hannibal.

Don’t read this if you are eating.

Trust me.

Hannibal delivered a gift bright and early Saturday morning. This particular cat burns the candle at both ends (once, actually, she did singe her tail on a candle but that’s not what I mean). I mean she lives two active lives, one indoors, and one out.

One day last year, my husband, Rob opened the front door and let her in. She meowed. The meow, unusual in it’s muffled and passion concerned us. I said “sounds like she’s got something in her mouth.” At which point she opened said mouth and a live mouse scurried under the cabinet.

Yes. Our cat is a wonderful huntress. Apparently she wanted to add a little excitement to her normal boring inside life. A little exercise perchance? A comment on the food we serve? Who knows.

Back to Saturday. I open the door, extend my toe to step onto the porch and recoil.

Staring at me is a mouse face. Not a mouse, just its face. Silence of the Lambs style. This is a movie I cannot ever see. A friend told me all about it and I had nightmares. So imagine how I felt when a part of it landed on my porch. (Pun intended of course)

Off to the lower left of the face lay the mouse behind, complete with tail and one foot.

Twelve inches away is another foot and some truly unmentionable items.

I’ve been sharing this story since Saturday. Rob corrects me each time I do. “It’s not the mouse face, it’s the whole mouse head.” I suppose that’s the hunter in him.

When spying the mouse staring at me with its sightless eyes I didn’t even have the urge to bend closer to see if its face was still attached to the head. My bad.

Here’s hoping your cat doesn’t love you enough to bring you gifts, doggie bags, or new toys.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Beware the Ides of November

Insanity is my middle name. Okay, it’s actually Sue, but for the purpose of illustration today, it’s Insanity.

It has a nice ring, I think. But we’ve already established I’m insane.

Not only have I taken on two classes to teach on top of the other November happenings, I have decided to do NaNoWriMo again.

Last year I finished well, won a certificate of completion which I framed in a nice, red 8x10.

NaNoWriMo is National Novel Writing Month. In the month of November many foolish and/or driven people set out to conquer a novel.

My posts on Scrambled Dregs will no doubt take an interesting slant as I reel from the sheer number of words and hours spent typing them.

I’d like to ask you, my dear readers, to throw out a name worthy of my heroine.

She’s in her twenties, quirky, loves kids and coffee. Give it a shot. If I choose your suggestion I will award you with an autographed copy should any ever see the light of day.

If anything good flows from my fingers onto the screen, I may share a few scenes with you. Why not, it seems like something an insane person might do.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Serials and Scenarios – Jerome Teel - The Election

Jerome Teel’s “The Election” is our book of focus for this week’s Christian Fiction Blog Alliance Blog Tour. I haven’t read either of Mr. Teel’s books, so I asked him a few questions.

Check out his book… “The Election”

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1582295778

And his website

http://www.jerometeel.com/

And now get to know the man behind the book – in Scrambled Dreg fashion.


What would you write if there were no rules or barriers? (epic novels about characters in the Bible, poetry, greeting cards, plays, movies, instruction manuals, etc.)

[Jerome Teel] Probably exactly what I'm writing now. I'm a lawyer who enjoys politics. So the ideas come easy. The discipline to write is difficult and finding time even more so. I'm still learning the craft of writing but I enjoy storytelling. Jesus Christ used parables to teach and I think Christian fiction is an excellent mode to utilize to convey a message.


What makes you feel alive?

[Jerome Teel] Spending time with my wife and children. We have a very busy life with multi-faceted children. Although at times it can be very exhausting, I wouldn't miss it for the world.



Where would you most like to travel -- moon, North Pole, deep seas, deserted island, the holy land or back to a place from your childhood, somewhere else? Why?

[Jerome Teel] I've never been to Europe and hope to go there some day. I enjoy the mountains and the beach, and would like to spend weeks traveling through the Caribbean.


Which compliment related to your writing has meant the most and why?

[Jerome Teel] The people who e-mail or call and say something like, "I couldn't put The Election down. The dirty clothes piled up; the dishes went unwashed; and I stayed up until 3:00 a.m. just trying to finish it."


What criticism has cut the deepest and why?

[Jerome Teel] Honestly I'm so new at this that I really haven't had a lot of criticism. I'm sure it is coming as more and more (hopefully) people read my work. The only criticism I've had -- if you can call it criticism -- were rejections from publishers. But I don't really consider that criticism. I saw it more of a business decision than a commentary on my work.


Unidentifiable antique, the scent of pipe tobacco and the drizzle of rain – make a scene.

[Jerome Teel] Joe McClatchy ran his hand along the wooden edge of the desk. It was old, he knew. But how old he wasn't certain. The mahogany wood was smooth and recently polished. The knee well went all the way through and there were drawers on both sides. The top of the desk was laden with leather. He had never seen anything like it. He spun slowly and absorbed the entire room. The ceiling was tall and the walls were dark and rich. The carpet beneath his feet was thick and soft. The furniture both elegant and purposeful. It was a room befitting the office of the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Joe was both intimidated and excited. He had worked hard and long hours at Harvard Law School for an opportunity to serve as a law clerk to the chief justice and he was confident he had earned the position. He inhaled deeply and enjoyed the scent that remained in the room from Chief Justice Williams' pipe. Joe's grandfather smoked a pipe and Joe tried to determine the type of Justice Williams' tobacco from the fragrance. Was it Virginian?

Joe returned to the front of the antique desk and peered over it at the drizzle that pelted against the window behind the desk.

"So you're Joe McClatchy?" he heard a deep voice behind him speak. He pivoted and found Chief Justice Williams standing in the doorway. He was taller than Joe imagined and his presence filled the room. It was as if every object in the office rose to attention and Joe even found himself standing more upright. He pressed his red and navy tie with his hand and buttoned the top button of his suit coat.

"Yes, sir," Joe replied. "I was just admiring your antique partners' desk. It appears to be from the early eighteen hundreds."

"You have an impressive eye, Mr. McClatchy," Justice Williams said. He moved further into the room and circled behind the desk. He, too, ran his hand along the smooth wooden edge. "It is quite an important piece of furniture in the history of our country. Many decisions by my predecessors were written on this desk."

Joe gazed again at the desk and it took on a different significance. It no longer was just a beautiful piece of furniture. He now realized he was looking at a part of American history.

Justice Williams settled into the leather chair behind the desk and smiled at Joe. "But you were wrong about it's age," he said. "It's from the seventeenth century. It's first owner wasn't a supreme court justice because there wasn't a supreme court yet. Would you like to know who was the first person to own it?"

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Mt SitzMark - The End

The October sky is a perfect shade of blue.
Sunshine bathes the hills and jewel-toned leaves glow in ambers and scarlets. Beautiful.

This makes it difficult to pull my mind back to the cold, white winter long ago when I still felt a bit of a thrill when choosing to do dangerous and foolish things.

I’m choosing not to look out the window, and I’m thinking about what today might have in common with that day in Steamboat Springs.

The brilliant sun. Yes. That’s it. Intense sunlight playing off the glittering whiteness (except for that unfortunate blue “bottom” acre at bunny hill.)

Snow blindness. Good times.

I’m going to blame my aunts’ loss of sanity on snow blindness.
I’m sure the condition impacts the mind.
This is the only reason I can imagine why they would take me, Miss Remedial-Ski-School-Flunkie-No-Can-Do-the-Snowplow-to-Save-Her-Life, to the top of the mountain.

“We have the perfect run for you.”

Boy was it.
Glistening snow, sloping gradually through the pines, marked with a sign labeled “intermediate.”

“Uh. I flunked snowplow. I’ll hurtle to my death and likely take you with me. You understand that, right?”

In my family we laugh in the face of danger. “Ha! What better way to learn the snowplow. Shall we push you, or do you want to start on your own?”

So, go I did. Shwoosh, thud, slide -- at least down the steepest part. It seemed safer than the hurtle option.

As the trail lost the steepness, I eventually stood, and believe it or not, I snowplowed.

The rest of the day and week blurs in comparison to that shining moment when I became a skier.

Even the rescue snowmobile incident is forgotten in comparison to the glory of conquering. Sigh.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Serials and Scenarios - Karen Kingsbury - Like Dandelion Dust

A momentary rest from the ski saga.
Hope you can make it through the weekend without knowing where I ended up.

Karen Kingsbury is this week’s author of interest.

I haven’t read her new book “Like Dandelion Dust” but I like the title. I’d give it a 8.2 out of 10, but I’m fond of alliteration (must be the poet in me – ha).

I’ve read one Karen Kingsbury novel – “A Time to Dance.” A well-written, heart-wrenching novel that stayed with me for quite awhile.

My daughter developed a love/hate relationship with “One Tuesday Morning.” When whimpering floats from the living room it's a good sign my daughter is reading Karen. Karen should take this as a compliment since my daughter chooses titles carefully.

Visit Amazon for reviews of “Like Dandelion Dust” http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1931722854

and Karen’s Website to get to know her and the rest of her books.
http://www.karenkingsbury.com/


Have a great weekend.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Mt SitzMark - Part 3

Snow-magnified brightness burst into the hotel room. Disoriented, I jumped out of bed. The painful reality of squealing calves reminded me of where I was and what I had spent the entire previous day doing. Or not doing -- the snowplow.

Today I would hit the beginner hill. The one on the side of the mountain. There I would practice all that I had been unable to master with Viktor the wonder-instructor’s careful instruction.

I limped to the hotel draperies and the crooked crack of light. Maybe I’d feel better with an eyeful of a majestic mountain. I pulled the curtain sideways and faced my destiny.

Unfortunately, the intense light had awoken the aunts. One hopped up and stood beside me. This was not good, because the landscape before us would be something I would never live down.

She screeched, alerting the other aunt of the opportunity for fun. There, in blue and white starkness, lie the evidence of my day spent in ski-bunny-school or Beginning Skiing and Repeat Beginning Skiing for the Inept and Pathetic (RBSIP).

I’d worn dark denim jeans power sprayed with waterproofing protection. As my jeans got wet, they bled. And they bled all over the hill. Every square foot contained a bright blue sitzmark, and there were a lot of square feet. This answered the mystery as to why my long underwear had turned a nice shade of chambray.

After a jolly giggle-fest, my aunts were ready to tackle the mountain. Hello! Someone should’ve taken the colorful snowpatch as a sign I wasn’t quite ready for a mountain. I slid on my blue long underwear and dressed to meet my fate.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Mt SitzMark - Part 2

I couldn’t post yesterday. I had to work extra hours and at a desk that terrified and tortured me. I learned much, like how much I appreciate my co-worker who knows who to call to find a hidden medical document that was needed ten minutes ago. (background violin music)

But I’m back at my desk today -- where I’m able to leave when my job is done, and write during breaks.

Now we’ll return to the ski-slopes, or in my case, we could probably call it a bump. Okay a sloping bump -- when at 14, I attended ski school with four-year-olds.

Those four-year-olds are quick learners.
Some finished the morning class and whizzed off to the advanced hills. I spent two sessions…Beginning Skiing and Repeat Beginning Skiing for the Inept and Pathetic. (RBSIP)

One of our first lessons, after how to stand in skis was how to navigate the small leg grabby ski lift. After many failed attempts, I just referred to it as the skier drag.

I must confess a positive happening, though. After an hour of falling and rolling around in the nice thick blanket of snow, I did become numb enough that the pain level dropped drastically.

Snowplowing basics seemed to be the biggest frustration for my ski instructor Viktor (not real name to protect innocent German ski instructors) (maybe he wasn’t German, he may have been Transylvanian). Viktor may have been the world’s greatest snowplower and snowplow teacher but my rebellious legs only snowplowed when they should have been doing something else.

Poor Viktor passed me at the end of the day. All the little ones (now expert skiers after a few short hours) skied off with their tanned parents, I waited, the last to be picked up. Viktor stopped his nervous pacing when he spied my aunts on the horizon. He smiled, shook hands, and bid me good luck. I’m sure he bee-lined immediately to one of the cozy bars in Steamboat.

We headed to the hotel room to warm up and get dressed for dinner. My aunts quizzed me and laughed when I told them of my spectacular crashes and up hill draggings.

My tomato red legs finally calmed to a nice pink and the tingling ebbed.

We scarfed a great Mexican meal, and headed back to the room for an early bedtime. The next day would be my first attempt to ski the mountain. My dreams were fitful. But full of youthful foolishness, I looked forward to redeeming myself the next morning. I would snowplow – even if it killed me.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Mt Sitzmark - Part 1

“They” say writers should read newspapers to glean ideas for stories and articles. Beyond the whole “they” conversation we could launch, I must share what I gleaned yesterday while reading the Sunday World Herald.

Truth is stranger than fiction. I’ve heard it said by a famous “they” – and I believe it. But the tidbit I’m sharing is not fictionalized at the moment, so brace yourself for cold, hard facts.

Yesterday, in the column written by the genius Mensa chick (yes, I read it) I discovered the word “sitzmark” means “a mark or hollow made in the snow by a skier’s backward fall.”

Ha. I’ve never heard this word, yet I identify with it.

My aunts took me on lots of great Colorado vacations when I was but a wee little lass. One year we skied in Steamboat Springs. (The town may remember me.)

At 14, I imagined myself pretty cool and able to accept the challenge of downhill skiing. Instead of ski pants, we purchased a pair of slightly oversized jeans and waterproofed them with 47 cans of Scotchguard, in case I fell. (disclaimer – the number of cans may be a slight exaggeration.)

This was in the day when denim didn’t undergo coolifying processes that affect color and fabric stiffness.

Day one in Steamboat dawned beautiful and bright. We dressed in our ski bunny finery and donned sunglasses. Fittings for boots and skies took a while.

My aunts had mastered flying down the side of a mountain and they stared with longing at the intermediate hill. At the school of non-initiates, they dropped me like a used tissue, and gracefully swished toward the ski lift.

I suppose my instructor was an amazing beefcake of a guy. This I don’t remember. “They” say that ski instructors are hunks so I’m sure he was. He may even have been European. For the purpose of illustration I’ll call him Instructor Hunky Sitz (and make him German).

Though I’ve forgotten Instructor Hunky Sitz, other things were burned into my brain.

To be continued…

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Serials and Scenarios - Violette Between - Alison Strobel

“Violette Between” is the new Alison Strobel release. Since I haven’t read it, and I hate neglecting to give you something to chew on, I’ve asked Alison some questions.

Check out her answers, personality, book and website.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1578567947

http://alisonstrobel.com/


Which compliment related to your writing has meant the most and why?

When I first submitted my manuscript to the folks at Waterbrook, one of them said something about me being a Christian counterpart to Douglas Coupland. They had no way of knowing, of course, that Douglas Coupland is one of my top 5 favorite authors ever! So when I heard that, I really swooned. :)

What criticism has cut the deepest and why?

Luckily my books have been pretty well received and there hasn't been a lot of criticism--at least not any that was any big deal. However,Publishers Weekly said (in their opening sentence, too, which I didn't think was a very kind way to start!) that "Worlds Collide" was "overly long." If only they'd seen the original, which was 20,000 words (nearly 100 pages!) thicker! I went through that thing countless times, looking for stuff I could remove, and I felt in the end that it all had to be there. So to have someone tell me that some of it was superfluous--well, that really ticked me off.

How does something worm its way into your heart? Through tears, truth,humor – other?

Through beauty. Beautiful things get to me--they either break my heart (even if they're good!) or they move me deeply.

What makes you feel most alive?

When I'm speaking to a group, like teaching or presenting. I love public speaking. :)

What would you write if there were no rules or barriers?

If by barriers you mean things like my own inability to do them, I'd say write profound yet accessible fiction that moves people to reevaluate their view of the world and God. I don't want to just entertain; I don't want to write fluff. I want my books to move people and really affect them.

Take this recipe and write a scene - unidentifiable antique, the scent of pipe tobacco and the drizzle of rain.

The tap of rain on the row house's dingy windowpanes echoed the drum of the professor's fingers on his desk. His eyes were locked on thec urious object, yet his gaze seemed empty, as though his mind's eye were staring at something entirely different. The small box which had contained the object now lay forgotten on top of a pile of fading magazines, one of many such piles that cluttered the warped wood floor and made the spacious Victorian flat feel as cramped as the servant's quarters. The tick of the grandfather clock in the corner was lost under the sound of Glasgow's winter rain, and when it chimed the hour the professor jumped from his reverie. Shaking his head at the time lost in thought, he pulled his favorite pipe from the top drawer of the massive cherry desk and packed it with his most fragrant tobacco.Only the pungent scent of the smoke would be able to clear his head enough for him to focus properly.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Do Frogs Fly?

In honor of Nanny’s birthday, I’ll take another quick trip to Nannyland.

Tree Frog, aka 11 month old baby boy, is a romantic little bugger. He purchased a dozen red roses and a small frog memento for his second favorite woman in the whole wide world. Okay, maybe second place is tied, but only for peacekeeping purposes.

Tree Frog is his new nickname, adopted this weekend after the parental units of said amphibian baby read the blog and realized, yes indeed, they have a little sticky-fingered climber under their roof.

This weekend he learned to use those finger pads to escape from his walker, and master the steps.

Monday, Nanny turned around after setting him on the floor post diaper change to discover he’d, with lightning speed, climbed the bed and hovered inches away from the opposite corner. She caught him as he prepared to jump.

Tree frog buddy, not birdie.

We’ll have a birthday party for Nanny tomorrow so I’ll be away from Blogger, and I’ll post a fun minterview on Thursday.

Who knows what Friday may bring, anyone have any requests?

Monday, October 09, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Apples and ....

You know how organized I am on Mondays...

Since I don't always post on Monday, I thought I'd surprise you with a devotion I gave for my Apple Orchard fun day at my church.

An Apple a Day Keeps the Doctor Away....


Why are apples good for you?

Vitamins and minerals, Phyto-nutrients help to reduce cancer risk, aid in cholesterol reduction, and even protect from lung disease. Minute damage done to our bodies, by living and breathing in our environments, can be minimized by the nutrition of a regular apple.

Is there something we can do spiritually that can offer similar benefits?

A daily dose of conviction from God’s Word protects us from the sins that can clog our blood like cholesterol. Believing and acting on the words we read in the Bible breaks down the junk flowing through our spiritual veins and directs it to the waste areas where it belongs. Mutating thoughts, like cancer cells – good cells gone bad – and their out of control spread is zapped when we let God’s Word govern our thought lives. Breathing in His Spirit through time spent with Him refreshes our spiritual lungs.

Apples are full of fiber which keeps things moving and cleans out our bodies.

The Bible, like a hot fire refines us and removes impurities like fiber does for our physical bodies. The Word melts sins, dangerous attitudes and selfishness when we apply it to our lives.

How important is fiber?

Waste accumulation eventually poisons us, physically and Spiritually.
What is spiritual waste? Hurts, negative thoughts, bitterness, unforgiveness….

Our tastes vary, and God has created a spectrum of textures and sweetness in apples. If you prefer crisp with a hint of sour, bite into a Granny Smith, soft, sweet Golden Delicious appeal to others. Many varieties from perfect pie apples to juicy-eat-beneath-the-tree-apples are available to meet all our apple tastes.

Different translations of the Bible are available to suit different tastes. We can also find God’s Truth in different worship styles and denominations. We don’t have to love Golden Delicious to enjoy apples. Nor do we have to coat it in caramel and sprinkles and nuts for it to be perfect, but we can if we want. As long as we don’t change what God’s Word says, or refuse to apply it, His Word benefits us, however we choose to devour it.

Sometimes all the toppings and embellishments begin to take away from the refreshing deliciousness of a pure apple. So pay attention. If a gourmet apple doesn’t satisfy, or a CD or book doesn’t feed your soul, maybe you need to get back to the basics of God’s simple design.

Eat an apple a day. And while you’re at it, gobble up some of God’s Word, too.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - We Have a Winner

Janet, you won the Dark Hour comment contest.

Yay.

You may wonder how I chose you from among the many thoughtful and provoking comments. It was a real struggle, but I’m pleased with the outcome, though I wish everyone could have received a copy of Dark Hour.

I pondered the idea of a "comment-off" where the semi-finalists tried to out-do each other in creativity and wordsmithing. But I didn’t want things to run amuck and crash Blogger or the entire internet.

My clever idea …I sang “Eenie-Meanie-Minie-Mo”, “Pop Goes the Weasel” and “Ring Around the Rosies” while I bounced a pen from name to name. You actually were chosen twice, Janet. Scientific, huh? Gina, you were the next runner up, the Weasel voted for you.

Janet, e-mail me your snail mail addy, and I’ll pass it along to the powers that be. I assume you will come back with a review of some sort…right? Because I’ll soon know where you live. Mwahhhahahahahahahhhha.

Have an excellent weekend everyone. I will be visiting an apple orchard with a church group tomorrow. This adventure involves riding on a large flatbed hauled by a tractor.

If I arrive alive, and with all fingers intact, I’ll see you next week. If unintelligible, code-like or foreign words appear on the blog just assume I’m in a body cast.

If I had trouble navigating a revolving door, can you imagine how dangerous I am around farm equipment?

Shudder.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - Nature Nanny

I haven’t taken you on a visit to Nannyland recently.

The three little ones are nearly one, just turned two, and looking in the face of three. A handful to say the least.

Nanny turns 20. Since Nanny is my daughter, let me just mention that her growing up process has no bearing on my age. I believe she gets two birthdays to my one, starting a few years ago.

I spent a couple of days in Nannyland just last week. Medical world is vastly different, so I was in for some culture shock.

The toothless, bald tribal leader who chanted and banged on toys has matured into a, how do I say this without offending, a tree frog. He loves physical contact which makes the activities of daily living almost impossible. Apparently his little fingers are like sticky pads or Velcro, and he is able to scale a full-size adult in seconds, or at least annoy the adult to the point that they pick him up. Nanny says he jumps. One day she turned around to pay attention to one of the girls and he lunged for her and clung to her back, while still strapped into the high chair.

I must have accidentally worn baby repellent so he spent most of his time trying to scramble out of my arms and onto Nanny.

We strolled to the park. The girls obey Nanny and point out wildlife and airplanes. On a walk a few days before I visited, Two-Year-Old screamed, “Lion!” Not a far fetched thing in our metro area -- Mountain Lions have been spotted, so Nanny whirled around and readied to do battle with the….. squirrel.

The last day I visited we spent several minutes in the yard. A balmy September breeze stirred baby-fine hair. Giggles rang, and the girls frolicked and sang and slid. Two-Year-Old found a leaf and began chewing. Nanny removed the leaf. A small branch showed up in Two-Year-Old’s fist, and it headed toward the open mouth. Nanny snatched it, and mentioned something about children not eating bunny food.

Two-Year-Old curled up with the dog, leaned over and began to graze.

Nannyland, a nice place to visit.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Serials and Scenarios – New Book - Dark Hour

I don't know Ginger Garrett. Reading the premise and the reviews of Dark Hour gave me goose bumps.

I'm familiar with the Biblical women she fictionalizes. Athaliah and Jezebel have fascinated me in a car crash kind of way -- my head swivels and looks even though my eyes can't bear to witness the grief or the horror they may encounter.

How could a mother do what Athaliah did? A question that my mind has pondered when encountering current headlines, too. As you as intrigued as I am? Read on, and click away.

Several copies of Dark Hour have been made available to blog commenters. If you comment, you'll be tossed into a drawing. Make sure I can get a hold of you to get your snail-mail, so no anonymous unless I have a way to track you down. My drawing will be Friday, the 6th at noon.



The book - Dark Hour
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1576838692/


The author - Ginger Garrett's website:
http://www.gingergarrett.com/

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Scribbles and Scrambles - October Dreams and Clean Wishes

I can’t believe its October, partially because it’s supposed to be a scorcher -- 91 -- today.

Iowa trees are layering on burnt orange, vivid yellow and scarlet. Absolute eye candy -- a scarlet tree framed against a Microsoft-Word-blue sky. (Suppose that will ever be an official color in a crayon box?)

Autumn is my favorite time of year. Something about the way the air smells (most places anyway) energizes me. I know some don’t care for the whole entering-into-death aspect of fall, but I don’t consider winter death, just a really long, cold nap. Maybe that’s why I like the changing season, my sleep deprived mind keeps thinking about dozing.

Life is crazy busy right now. Do you ever just long for a few hours alone in a clean house? Sometimes I’m tempted to drive through new neighborhoods and look for a house that’s finished but not sold yet, so I can sneak in and enjoy luxurious solitude.

Sigh. I suppose I could clean my own house, but they just don’t stay clean.

I have no idea what the rest of the week holds for those of you who visit. I’ll be posting info about a book that’s new to me.

I’ll see if October can inspire some really good poetry, too. I did see a cricket this morning. Oh yeah, I already covered crickets.