Tuesday, August 20, 2013

It's Been A Long Time...

still thinking of you | via Facebook

It's been so long since I posted a blog. I feel like I owe everyone an apology. I'm sure some of you wondered if I was still blogging here. But I'm back, and I'm sorry for being absent for such a long time, and I hope each of you are doing well.

There's not a whole lot of new going on at Chateau De Townsend. We did get a few new things, like a washer and dryer. The dryer was free, courtesy of Aunt Freda and Uncle Bill, and the washer was a very good price. I'm chuffed to bits to be able to do laundry again! It's such a blessing! I'm able to sit on my couch and fold clothes! No more trips to the laundromat!

Doug also bought me a Keurig. We found one at a good price, and I've been enjoying Italian Roast Coffee in my KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON London Flag mug, and my THANK GOD FOR GIRLFRIENDS mug that's pink with high heels on it that Jodi got for me for Christmas! It's such a blessing having a Keurig, too. I like my coffee au lait, and I actually sit and enjoy it, unlike the prepackaged bottles of vanilla frappy I used to drink.

Doug became the same age as me in June.

I'm up to twenty-two books now. I've never had writer's block, but I have writer's tackle. *groan* Sorry. I can't take credit for that. One of my doctor friends came up with the whole "writer's tackle" thing. *lol*

I started a new blog, but I'm not leaving this one. It's a blog composed of short stories that are inspired by dreams...well nightmares I've had. You can check it out by clicking here. The stories are both written in the first person and they are sort of from the horror genre, not supernatural ghosts and vampires, and emo girls who date them, or werewolves, or Frankenstein's monster and his family. They are about real things that could happen. So perhaps realistic horror. *shrugs* I don't know. Read them with caution. That's all I ask.

I've been sick. Story of my life, I know. I went on a trip and brought bronchitis back as a souvenir. I was nice enough to give it to Doug. He's doing much better now, but he was really sick. Unfortunately, I still don't feel well. Again, story of my life. So things around here have looked like this:

people sick with flu

I wouldn't use real pics of us sick. That would give people nightmares! *lol*

My father-in-law went into the hospital while I was out of town. He seems to do that a lot. It's almost like he knows! "Hey, Shellye and/or Shellye and Doug are out of town. Time for me to get sick and go to the hospital!" He actually improved for a short period of time. To give you a little background, two days after Father's Day, my father-in-law pulled out his trache. The staff at the nursing home noticed that he was breathing on his own without the trache and the "breathing machine that was apparently not a ventilator". And he lived without it until the third day of my trip. He was talking and everything. I don't know if he ever got to eat by mouth during the time that the trache was out, and I assume that my mother-in-law would have said so if he had, but now the trache and the ventilator are back in place, and he was finally sent to Cornerstone, in St. Mary's Hospital. He's usually at CHH. Unfortunately, he can only stay there until September 1st, and if he's not weaned off of the ventilator, he will have to be shipped to a facility two hours away. *sighs* I really hope that doesn't happen.

On the second day of my trip out of town, Doug was in a car accident in the company car. He was unharmed. He was making a left hand turn, and a guy sped past another car and hit him as he was turning. The guy was speeding, but that's okay for him to do apparently because according to the police report, it was Doug's fault. No mention of the speeding was on the report of course. But ultimately, what the report is saying is that my husband is powerful enough to cause someone to speed past another car and hit him. He had plenty of time and room to turn until the car came flying around the other car and hit him. *shrugs* So we're going to be broke for a while because Doug has to pay the $1,000 deductible, which means he will be paying the company to work there for a while. We're both concerned that his job is in jeopardy. Since the accident, he has been stuck at the shop all day. And if they do put him back on the road, and he's the victim of someone else's stupidity behind the wheel, he will automatically be sacked.

I lost a few people who I thought were my friends along the way.

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Mediha Jahić | via Facebook



One of them I have made amends with, but it will never be the same. The other one was no big loss. I hate to be that way, but she has hurt me before. I knew that I didn't need her or her drama in my life. Unfortunately, that doesn't change the fact that it still hurts. I was there when she had nobody. But that doesn't matter. She actually told me that I was going to have nobody but my fictional characters and that I would die cold and alone. Maybe she's right. Just maybe. With friends like that, why should I want non-fictional people in my life?

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Fictional characters

The Truth Comes Out... | via Tumblr

Great Saiyamans

Jade Christenson

Just to see you smile.


fictional friends | via Tumblr


Mariana Prado (my life)

nya nya nya | aseaofquotes: Richard Bach, Illusions

There's rarely any real loyalty in this world anymore. Loyalty is becoming extinct. That's why the whole "us four and no more" principle exists. People get hurt. They make the mistake of thinking they have people who love them and care about them in their lives.


I have several really good friends, one I've known for eighteen years, and one I've know for sixteen, and several that I've known for almost ten years. I've even had one person really surprise me by being a friend, and let me tell you, she is a hidden treasure. I don't know what I would have done without her this past year.

Anyway, I'm not going to name names or rehash the situation, but I am going to share my feelings because it is my blog and I can. And once I have shared these, I'm going to belt up about it and move on.

& so we ramble

Below are the things I wanted to say...

kojh | via Facebook
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Parfum of a NightFly

Picture Quotes, Famous Picture Quotes by Popular Authors | Page 7


i'm done | 😔 | via Tumblr

And now I will move on.

The truth is...

The type of kisses where teeth collide

It's difficult to forget anything with my eidetic memory, but like the quote says that I shared on my fan page yesterday:

"When your past calls, don't answer. It has nothing new to say."

True story.

Maybe some of the pictures were a little mean, but I've been pushed too far. As John Pinnette would say, "I lost my cherub like demeanor." It doesn't mean that I don't love the people who have really stood by me, because I do. I'm just hurt by what the fake friends have done to me, and I have every right to be hurt. Am I going to stay there? No. I'll get over it.

I am contemplating whether or not I have room for new people in my life in light of everything that's happened. I just don't want to invest my time and my whole self into something that isn't going to last. If someone can wad up the friendship after ten years (give or take), and almost throw it away in a fit of anger over something so beyond the valley of asinine, is a twenty, or thirty, or forty year friendship really and truly stable? The answer is no. Nothing is stable. That's why you have to be careful.

Here's some helpful tips for a happier life.

  • Don't share anything you don't want shared with the world. Secrets aren't really secret.
  • Never vent to anyone. If you're having a problem, find a someone with a solution, or ask Google.
  • Get rid of the drama lovers. Those who love drama love to drag the innocent bystanders around them into the middle of it. It's like a Broadway production to them. They don't care who gets hurt in the process as long as the world revolves around them.
  • Never let someone stay in your home for more than three days. They will use up all of your things and drain you of every cent you have, and never replace what they've used or apologize for it.
  • Don't get angry with your family. They have to love you, but they don't have to like you.
  • If you want something done right, do it yourself. If you want something done right now. You have to do it yourself.
  • If you make a promise, keep it. If you make an appointment, keep it. If you make a commitment, keep it. It is better not to make a vow than to break a vow.
  • Feelings are temporary, even love. They say that love conquers all, but even love isn't enough.
  • Unforgiveness is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Forgive. It may take a while, but it's worth it, not for them but for you.
  • Forgiving is one thing, but forgetting is another. Don't forget what you've been through so you won't make the same mistake over and over. Original mistakes only.
And that concludes this post! Doug is on his way home, and I'm going to find something to munch.

Have a great day, everyone!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Author Q&A.


I thought I would share a bit about my work with my readers today, and answer some questions and answers about my book series. Enjoy!

As of Monday, April 1st, these are the stats for the entire series: 
  • 921,334 words
  • 9,659 pages
  • 18 books
  • 1 editor
  • 0 titles
My goal is to have one book ready to publish by October of this year. I am badly in need of some titles!


***These questions were taken from Author Quiz at Blogspot. You can view the blog by clicking on this link: http://authorquiz.blogspot.com/p/how-to-get-featured-on-author-quiz.html. I skipped several sections because they do not yet apply to me. Enjoy, and happy reading!***


Section 1:  Writing In General / About Yourself

1.     What is it you love most about writing? The escape. I can be in another place, anywhere I want to be. I can be who I want to be. Anything is possible.
2.    What's the best and worst thing about being an author? I’m technically not an author. I could be wrong, but I feel like author is a title given to a published writer. The best thing about being a writer…there are lots of things, really. I can’t just name one. The worst thing about being a writer is that it is a sedentary profession. You sit or lie around on your bum, in my case, for thirteen hours on a typical work day. If I could, I would write while working out on the exercise machines, while I’m lying in the tub, while I’m walking around the park or the mall, or while I’m cleaning.
3.    Are there any parts of being an author that you dislike? As I previously mentioned, I dislike the whole sedentary thing where you sit all day. I also dislike those few and far between moments where I get stuck on something and can’t move on.
4.   Is there anything about you or your writing that makes you unique from other authors? I’m not sure yet. A lot of people seem impressed by the fact that I’ve written eighteen books. I’ve been called a “marathon writer” by several people in the industry. *shrugs* I really don’t know.
5.    Tell us a bit about yourself and your work as an author. I actually wanted to be a writer since I was four going on five. I used to copy the junk mail advertisements when they came in the mail to practice writing. Then, I grew up and left the dream behind. In 2009, things were going terribly wrong in my life, and my husband’s life. My husband was unfairly sacked from his job, so he decided to go back to school. I was concerned about what we were going to do, and when I voiced these concerns, he felt like I was trying to take his dream away from him. We weren’t on the best terms for a while. To escape, I got online. I had characters that I had created and I wrote bits and pieces about them and shared their stories with my friend, Shelly. She told me I should put them into a book. I didn’t think much about it. Then, she started sharing my stories with her family and a few mutual friends, and they said the same thing, put them into a book. Since my friends really and truly believed in me and supported me, I decided perhaps I should listen to them. So I really started writing more and more, and put even further effort into the characters, andShelly offered input that changed the entire story. She was there when the story was in its infancy, really. Even now, I look back on my writing from three years ago and shake my head. Oh, and my husband finished school, graduated with honors, and we’re much better now. Anyway, to make an already incredibly long story short, I was tired of life and the way things were going, so I started writing as a way of escape, and it became something bigger than I could have ever imagined!
6.   If you had to sum up your book, (insert title), in three words, what would they be? I don’t know.
7.   What are you working on now and what projects and ideas do you have lined up next? I go all over the place, which isn’t difficult with eighteen books. One book is a sequel, two books are prequels, and the rest are the series. I switch back and forth, depending on where inspiration strikes. I can’t really say what projects exactly. I’m just telling a story…an incredibly long story.
8.    Do you ever feel yourself becoming quite emotional when writing a particularly intense scene and is there a specific passage in particular where this was the case? Yes. I do tend to become emotionally involved in my character’s lives. I feel their emotions like they are my own. For example, I was a mess when one of my characters tried to commit suicide. He thought he had lost his wife and his children because of his addiction to alcohol. This particular character grew up in a very dysfunctional home. His father was an alcoholic who abused his wife and children, and his mother was an enabler. He was the very middle of five children, and he was essentially raised by his oldest brother. When his father died, my character was so grief stricken that he dove into the addiction head first. This happened starting with the night he got the news of his father’s death. He said he was celebrating, but he realized despite everything, he was depressed that his father died. I can’t give away much more, but he and his wife separated, and he started drinking. One night, he drank so much that he experienced alcohol induced psychosis, and he hallucinated his father. That’s when he tried to commit suicide. Now, to properly write this part, I put myself in a dark place because I wanted to be in the room with him, experiencing it. I did research on the subject matter. I listened to music that he may have been listening to, and I imagined what would happen if I were in his shoes. I felt like this would enable me to write about his experiences, and I sobbed through the entire process, and it took days. The minute I stepped away from the keyboard, I immediately took a two day break, I watched some comedy, read some uplifting books, hung out with friends, and I basically did whatever I could to pull myself out of that dark place, and I was successful. 

Section 2:  The Creative Process
1.     Where did the inspiration for your first/latest* novel, (insert title), come from? I hated my life, and a friend told me that if I hated it so much that I should do something to change it. I started writing stories to escape from my life, not knowing that I was in fact changing it. My friends encouraged me to put the stories into a book. I would say that a combination of my hatred for the way life was going, and the encouragement of my friends are what inspired me.
2.    Why do you enjoy writing in your usual genre, or what is it about your usual genre that appeals to you most as a writer? I’m not sure what you would call it, but I call it realistic fiction, because it’s real places, real events, real scenarios, but fictional characters. I like writing about things I can really experience.
3.    If you were to write a novel outside your usual genre, which genre would you like to experiment with and why? When I was a teenager, I wrote horror stories, and even those were not typically about the supernatural, they were written about real things, like my story, “The Bombing of _______ High School,” which was written after the high school I attended experienced a fortnight’s worth of bomb threats. My story was about what would really happen if the threats were not just threats. Instead of turning me into the principal, (which is what would happen if a teenager wrote something like that today) the librarian thought my story was well written and entertaining, so I shared other horror stories with her as well, like an untitled piece I wrote about a student who had been pushed too far. I may explore writing realistic horror. I’m playing around with the idea of composing a story about a huge fear of mine. I have so many that I could probably write a book of short horror stories just about my fears alone,
4.   When you first get the idea for a new story, do you find that the finished product tends to differ quite significantly from your original idea, or does the original idea remain more or less intact? The original idea remains, but with realistic fiction, that doesn’t seem difficult.
5.    What came first, the idea for your first book or the decision to write a book? The idea for my book.
6.   Would you expect yourself to be most creative as a writer shut off on a desert island or immersing yourself in a busy social life? Sadly, I crave solitude most of the time because I have my characters, but I try to have a good balance between solitude and having a social life. I can become inspired anywhere. I would love to have the opportunity to work with the ocean as my backdrop, then spend time with my friends, living it up, or spend hours writing in a huge modern cabin with large multistory windows, a stone fireplace with a roaring fire in it, and snow covered evergreens and mountains, then experience a day of skiing and snowboarding with my husband.
7.   Have you ever had an idea which was inspired by a real life incident, but which you ultimately decided not to include in your story because readers would think it was too farfetched? No. Many writers quote about truth in fiction. There are bits and pieces of my life woven throughout my book series that only family or my friends may catch as they read it. It could be something as simple as a favorite hat from my childhood, or an inside joke that only a friend would laugh loudly about, or something I learned from someone else, stuff like that.

Section 3:  A Bit Of Fun...  Movies/TV/Other Media

1.     If your book, (insert title), was made into a movie who would you want to play the main character and why? I have a few ideas for characters, but I know three of the characters are going to be very difficult to find people to play them due to certain physical attributes that make them who they are.
2.    If you were to write a story featuring a fictional character from another author’s novel, who would you choose and why? I would probably write a sequel about one of Judy Blume’s characters, like Sheila, or Peter and Farley Drexel Hatcher (FUDGE), from Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing, and Superfudge, tell the story about where they are now.
3.    If you were to write a story featuring a fictional character from any movie of your choice, who would you choose and why? I really don’t have an answer.
4.   If you were to write a fictional story based on a real-life celebrity, who would you feature and why? Again, I’m not really sure who I would feature.
5.     Would your book, (insert title), work best as a movie adaptation or as a TV series? It could go either way, but it would probably be best as a television series due to the length. The movie, even if it was a trilogy, or five movies, like the Twilight series, there would still be stuff that would have to be left out.
6.   If your book, (insert title), was made into a movie, and you were asked for input into the soundtrack, are there any songs that would work especially well for any particular scenes? Definitely. I can’t list them all, but my characters have their own music playlists on two of my accounts. The suicide attempt of my character that I mentioned in a previous answer, there is a song I played that really set the mood as I wrote that piece. I’m not sure how the artist would feel about it if it was used in that manner.
7.   Is there a particular scene from your book, (insert title), which would translate well to canvas and provide a powerful inspiration for a dramatic or emotional piece of artwork? Yes. There’s a piece in my sequel series, yes it’s a series all by itself, where one of the main characters passes away. The character was born with an inherited illness and the character died young, but this particular person leaves behind a legacy for family and friends, and the character’s name lives on due to this legacy.
8.    If you could choose someone famous to record your book in audiobook format, who would you choose as the voice and why? This answer is an easy one…Patrick Warburton, because I love his character in Rules of Engagement. He can make toilet paper sound dramatic! *LOL*

Section 4:  Your Characters
1.     If you could invite one character from your novel(s) to a dinner party who would it be and why? One character? Really? My character, S. He is an oncologist who later becomes the chief of medicine of a certain fictitious hospital, and he has a HIGH IQ, he’s a hyperpolyglot, and he is very cultured. He has beautiful hands. He’s just beautiful inside and out. He would be extremely interesting to listen to, and to learn from.
2.    Are any of your characters based heavily on people you know or have met from real life and if so, would they regard it as a compliment or an insult to discover they were the inspiration for the character in question? My female character, L, is a lot like a combination of my friends Shelly and Allison. Both of those friends look like I picture L does. They’re both blond and they’re both intelligent and gorgeous, but they’re not stick figures, and neither is L. L is 5’10 though. L is intelligent, and she’s a pediatrician, but unlike Allison, L does not get the hang of motherhood for a while. Shelly also reminds me a little of my female character, G, who is a bit spoiled, gorgeous, and VERY into fashion. And a later character, K, looks and acts like Allison did in high school. My female character, D, I have no idea where she comes from because there really isn’t anyone in my life like her. My husband is a combination of my male characters, P and R. R has my husband’s birthday, and he’s quiet and somewhat introverted like my husband, but P loves the outdoors as much as my husband does, and he loves corny jokes, also something my husband inherited from his father, and children. P is a big kid with a goofy grin. My husband can be like that sometimes, too. A later character, J, looks like my friend, Danielle, with green eyes, I even gave J Danielle’s birthday. She has that gorgeous black hair and darker complexion. I hope my friends are not offended that some of my characters remind me of them, or they remind me of some of my characters. Some of the character modeling that happened was accidental.
3.    Are any of your characters based on yourself and if so to what degree, and do you find it easier or more difficult to write characters based on yourself? My characters each have different aspects of me here and there, but I am probably the most like my female character, T. She’s a lot stronger than me. She has quite a bit more of a backbone than I do, and she’s much meaner than I am. It is easy to write about her in certain aspects, like when she told her eventual husband, P, that the last thing she needed was another man, I actually said that to my eventual husband!
4.   Without being too specific and without revealing too much about the plot, have you ever killed off a character who you felt particularly attached to and if so was it an emotional experience writing the relevant scene? Oh yes. There was a secondary character that Shelly wanted dead. It was symbolic of something that had gone on in her life, and she wanted me to tell her story in so many words, and in my words because she knew someone would read it and relate to it, and perhaps it would change their view on life. This was all last minute, too. So I did this for her since she supported me from the beginning, and because I had actually written about this character’s life, as a main character when I first starting writing stories to escape, it was tough. We both cried, but I wouldn’t’ go back and change it.
5.    Have you ever written a supporting character, who took on a life of their own or turned out to be far more popular than expected and if so do you have plans to feature them as the lead character in a story of their own? Yes, he’s T, S’s best friend from Japan. I’m already thinking he’s going to get his own section now.

***There are some sections I have skipped because I’m not published yet***

Section 10:  Promotional Section / The Big Sell

1.     Why should people buy your book,(insert title)/books? I will have to have a friend answer this question because I really can’t. I know that’s perplexing.
2.    Who do you see as your target audience? I write a bit about people of all ages, so I would think it may appeal to a bit of everyone.
3.    Why would you recommend your book, (insert title)/books to other readers? To escape. That’s why I started writing was to escape from something.
4.   What would you say is your biggest strength as a writer? Persistence and focus. The fact that I could write for thirteen hours per day is a huge strength, at least I think so.
5.    What target audience would you recommend your book, (insert title)/books to? Probably teenagers and adults of all ages.
6.   What sort of audience will your book,(insert title)/books most appeal to? Adults of all ages.
7.   Of all your books, which would you say was the best starting point for a reader to be introduced to your work? From the beginning. It’s an ongoing story.
8.    Is there a TV series or movie which you think would appeal to a similar audience as your book, (insert title)? I’m not sure.
9.    Can you list a few other books which you feel would appeal to a similar audience as your own book, (insert title)I’m not sure. My series is a bit about everything. You get a look at different career fields, such as medical, law, political, just to name a few. One of my characters is a stay at home mother of two, who also works from home. Another character gets a chance to work from home, which is convenient since he and his wife have four children, (two sets of twins), but he still has to be at his office to meet with people on an as needed basis, and his wife has a demanding career, so family often steps in to help when he can’t be there. So as you see, my book is not a medical drama, or a political drama, or a crime thriller, so I’m not sure how to answer this question.

Monday, April 1, 2013

March, April, and Easter.

Greetings, Salutations, and Happy Belated Easter!

It's been a while since I composed a post, and so please accept my sincerest apologies. I've been quite busy these days. March was probably the busiest month I experienced recently.


Today is the first day of April. In four days, I will become older. I don't like that, but there's nothing I can do to stop it from happening...except cosmetic surgery! *LOL*

I got invited on a little getaway to Florida with my friends, Ed and Jamilaih. Doug had just literally started his job days before they invited me, so he couldn't go. I'm not big on being away from home, and that's probably due to OCD. Vacation for us OCD sufferers is often not vacation. Allow me to explain.

  1. Being away from home is scary to OCD sufferers. Our homes are like our safe places. We control what goes on in our homes, what we allow in our homes, and home is a place of refuge if we're traumatized on the outside.
  2. Packing is never fun for an OCD sufferer. We ALWAYS think we are forgetting something, even though like Santa Claus, we've made our lists and checked them twice, or in this case, an even ten times. (I could have just slipped my phone into its little compartment in my purse, and all my husband has to do is asked, "Did you get your phone?" And even though I just put it in there a nanosecond ago, I STILL have to check for it!)
  3. No matter how you travel, it's dangerous and scary. I could tell you the statistics for motor vehicle accidents, train derailments, and plane crashes.
  4. And once the destination of travel is reached, then there are worries about the home and your loved ones. The picture in my mind was of Doug eating junk food, pizza boxes and fast food wrappers strewn about the cottage, and empty energy drink cans and Dr. Pepper bottles all over the floor in the car. None of that happened, though.
I bit the proverbial bullet and went on the trip. I'm very proud of myself for that. I was among friends, so I wasn't alone, and they had taken this trip before, so they knew what they were doing.

Ed and Jamilaih were going there for the Missionary Conference at Faith Baptist Church. They were a part of the conference. They are going to Belize soon. (I want to go, too.) I will see about getting more information to share so I can promote them on my blog.

We literally stayed at the church. They had rooms there. That was the first time I've ever heard of or seen such a thing. They gave us keys so we could keep our things under lock.

The conference was from Monday to Thursday. Services were held daily at nine A.M. and seven P.M. and we were fed three meals per day. I wasn't used to all this food. I sort of have bad habits when it comes to food and consumption. I drink coffee for breakfast. That's it. But since I got back from Florida, I've been having cold cereal every morning. They had it there, and surprisingly enough, that whole, "If you want to lose weight, don't skip breakfast" tip is actually true. I dropped five pounds while I was there! And the food was good, too. 

I met so many nice people at Faith Baptist Church. Some of them attended the church, and others were missionaries who came in for the conference. Ed and Jamilaih finally got to sit down face to face with a family who are also missionaries in Belize. They were there for the conference. They had spoken on Facebook, but hadn't met until we got there. They were nice, and they have four beautiful children. Jamilaih and I went with them to go shopping and to Starbucks. The boys are so funny! I sat in the back with them, and they were telling me all about the history of the Power Rangers. They entertained me with action figures. It was so fun!

Faith Baptist Church was nice, and it was different from what I was used to. It was set up similarly to the church I attend, but about half the size. The missionaries set up their tables in the back, and people gathered before and after services to talk with them. The church had slots along the walls where they kept newsletters from other missionaries they support. At the conference, there were missionaries to Argentina, Honduras, the Lakota Sioux Tribe in South Dakota, Africa, and to the Jewish people, and as I previously mentioned, Belize. Every night, they had the missionaries come and share a little bit about themselves, their families, and their mission. And each day, different missionaries spoke.

While we were there, they had a women's luncheon. Jamilaih and I went and hung out with the women and their daughters, while the men and their sons had pizza. We got to try something called "Impossible Cake," a dish served in Belize.

The last night of the conference, I exchanged contact information with some of the people, and I have several new followers on Facebook! Yesterday, when I went to my church (I wasn't able to go until yesterday, due to illness), it was weird not seeing them.

We spent one last night at the church, then, the next day, we packed up and headed for Destin Beach.

I've been to Myrtle Beach, S. C. and to a beach in North Carolina, but after seeing Destin Beach, it makes both Myrtle and the beach in NC both look like a city dump. Here's why:

Turquoise water...that's something I've never seen until we went there!

This is what our day looked like!

There were places like this near the steps with this grass growing out of the sand!

I wish we could have stopped so I could get a picture of what I'm about to describe, but there was a little bay area that we passed where one side of the water was turquoise, and the other side of the water was blue! It was so awesome to see such a distinct cut off of different colored water! How did that happen?

I haven't seen a beach since I was in my 16th year, so this was a shock to behold. It was around sixty-five degrees, with a chill in the air that felt refreshing. While Ed and Jamilaih were trying to pick a spot, I rolled up my jeans and ran straight for the water! As soon as the water swirled around my feet, I started laughing and crying at the same time! My heart ached for Doug terribly all of the sudden. He should have been experiencing this with me, but I didn't dwell on it. I knew even though he couldn't be there, he would want me to have fun. So I walked along the beach. I tried to keep my hat on, but the wind kept blowing it, so I gave up. I found 1/3 of a sand dollar and a few shells. I found Jamilaih and Ed a couple of pieces of a sand dollar and a few shells, but there were not many shells to be found. I didn't even see any children searching for them. Around me, people were carrying surf boards, playing volleyball, swimming, lying in beach chairs, or playing in the sand. Some girls in bikinis were lining up while guys took pictures of them, no doubt for Tumblr. I could be wrong, but I've seen some of the poses on Tumblr before. There was a group on the beach, listening to FUN's song, Some Nights. Some people were walking along the beach, like me. I walked either way until I realized I could no longer see Ed and Jamilah, then, I went back.

Ed and Jamilaih met up with some friends that they saw last time they were in Florida for the conference. When I got back from my walk, the six of them were sitting in the sand, talking. We went to The Crab Trap to eat, right there on the beach, just a few feet from where we were sitting. Ed ands Jay's friends were nice enough to pay for our meal. I had a coconut smoothie and the best crab cakes I've ever eaten! We talked to them for a while, then, we needed to get on the road. We were leaving a lot later than we had planned, but it was for good reason. 

We stopped in Tennessee for the night, deciding to break up the thirteen hour trip into two days. We got home on Saturday around four that afternoon. Doug was beyond the valley of the thrilled to see me! He took me to Starbucks and we sat and enjoyed the seventy degree weather. Then, we went home and he helped me unpack everything.

Sunday, I was really looking forward to going to church, but I was beyond the valley of exhausted, and I couldn't get up. I laid in bed most of the day. My body hurt, but I attributed it to being in the car for two days. Unfortunately, I spiked a fever of 101 that night, and I spent my first week home sick.

It's been about three weeks, and I still don't feel like I'm completely over it, but that could be due to the changing weather. It's been forty degrees one day, and sixty the next. We've had to use our fans part of the day, then turn them off a few hours later. The way it looks, Spring isn't coming.

Here are some other things about Florida:

  • I got to see a palm tree for the first time with my own eyes! I had seen pictures of them, but I had never seen them "in real life" before. Some of them had the criss cross pattern at the top, but others didn't. I don't know if that denotes maturity or type of palm tree it is, or what, but I do know that a palm tree's root is as long as the tree is tall, meaning nine feet tall = nine foot long root!
  • Faith Baptist Church has several thrift stores there. They were nice, unlike the thrift stores here, and they offered a 50% discount to missionaries!
  • My allergies were really bad in Florida. I have no idea why, but my head was so stuffed up while I was there, and I was eating pain meds like candy, due to the sinus pain and pressure. Someone had told me and Doug a few years ago that when he went to Florida, his allergies were working overtime.
  • It was actually disappointing, coming back here from Florida, after experiencing a week of fifty degree mornings with a cold but bracing chill in the air, seventy degree days with lots of sunshine, and forty degree nights. Thankfully, the day we returned home was seventy degrees! I never thought I would say I couldn't wait for warm days and wearing sunglasses and floppies!
  • We ate at a place called Helen Back, that had the best food! When Ed told me he was going to take me to Helen Back, I was little intimidated at first. *lol*
  • After seeing Destin Beach, I NEVER want to go to any other beach ever again!
  • Now this may be shocking, but I DID NOT WORK ON MY BOOK SERIES the entire time I was in Florida! I did get online, but I repeat, I DID NOT WORK! Doug was very proud of me!

I had a funeral to attend that first week after returning home. Our church lost an amazing woman at the hands of a drunk driver. I went to the funeral sick as a dog and sat in the back away from everyone until a friend insisted I sit with her even though I may have still been contagious.

My father-in-law spent the last week of March in the hospital for pneumonia, sepsis, renal failure, and a bowel infection. He was in isolation, although I didn't understand their version of isolation. They give you a yellow gown that's thinner than paper, and gloves to put on. I don't know if that's to protect us from him, or him from us. Either way, I don't see how it would work, so I didn't go in his ICU room. I wasn't taking any chances. He was released to go back to the nursing home yesterday.

My mother-in-law made a tough decision. She decided to institute a DNR as my father-in-law's primary medical power of attorney. Doug is his father's secondary medical power of attorney. The first night he was in the hospital, they changed the full resuscitation order to a DNR. I know it's tough, but it's the right thing to do. My mother-in-law changed her mind because a kind doctor explained to her that full resuscitation requires chest compressions, which would break my father-in-law's ribs, cause pain, and further lower his quality of life. Whoever that doctor was, thank you.

Now, for an update about my book series!

I have now written eighteen books. One is a prequel, one is a sequel. The rest of the books are the first part of the series. I have written a grand total of, drum roll please, 921,334 words and 9,659 pages! (And boy are my arms tired!) This is including the work I did today.

The first book should be ready to publish by October. I had a book in mind to publish, but now I am leaning toward a different book in the series. I still have no titles, not even an overall series title. As you can see, this is why I am in way over my head.

I do have a fan page on Facebook now! You can view the page and like it here. Please have a dekko at it and like it, and if any of my readers have any fan pages you want me to like, send me a link and I will be pleased to do that for you.

Easter...it's about the resurrection, yet it has become so commercialized these days. It didn't seem as bad this year, either that, or I just didn't go out and about at the correct times. I made the mistake of buying a dress. I haven't bought an Easter dress since 2009, after a horrible shopping excursion took place. I had exchanged it once because it wasn't the right size, and I had tried on the previous one, so I thought I was good. This dress didn't fit either. So I had to scrounge through my closet and find a dress I hadn't worn before. I hate wearing dresses to begin with, so I found one, a little black dress. Doug wasn't thrilled with the idea of me wearing black, but most of my dresses are black. So I threw it on. We were running behind thanks to nothing working out, and I had to stop in the middle of getting ready, take him to church, then go back home, get ready, and go find somewhere open for breakfast, and it was pouring the rain, and I didn't get there until ten o'clock. Needless to say, I was in a lousy mood. I had to take two trips up to the crow's nest because I couldn't carry everything at once, and my high heels were not working out, so I put on the flip flops I brought and decided I really didn't care what anyone thought. Only two people wore all black, three if you count me. That was it. Thankfully, we were in the crow's nest, doing the media and song lyrics for the screens for both services.

After Easter service, Doug took me to Applebee's. As I got out of the car, a spider climbed down from his web and was about to drop on me. I know you're asking, "How do you know it was a boy spider?" It was because of the way he looked at me. Yes, that's a valid answer! I nearly freaked! So I stood there in the pouring rain, until I started to get cold, so I ran inside the restaurant while Doug went on a search and destroy mission for our uninvited guest who decided to drop in unannounced. He knew if he didn't kill the spider that I would not get back in the car. YAY OCD!

I was seated immediately, which was a shock. When the hostess asked how many in our party, and I said two, and she replied with, "Oh, we can seat two right now." The food was good, our time together was good. Then, we went home. I slept most of the evening, then watched television, and finally got some work done! I wanted to work earlier, but I kept falling asleep. Sleepiness is a writer's mortal enemy! *lol*

Anyway, I've decided for sure NO MORE EASTER DRESSES! Henceforth, I will be buying Easter dress pants and Easter dress shirts! I hate wearing dresses!

That sums up our Easter. I hope everyone had a Happy Easter! I hope everyone has an awesome month!


I will now leave you with some Easter images!



I LOVE the London flag egg!

I wish Spring would come...



And this final pic deserves a spot all on its own!


Saturday, March 2, 2013

I Know It's March, But Here's What Happened in February.

No, it's not February, but I'm late composing my review of February.

February looks like the above picture. It's supposed to be cold here where I live, but usually around my brother's birthday, it's seventy degrees and stays that way until March comes. This year, we've had plenty of snow in January and February.

With February comes Valentine's Day, which was also my twelfth wedding anniversary this year!

We went out to dinner the minute he got home. I wore make up and heels and everything! *LOL* We try to go somewhere we don't eat all the time, so we chose Uno's. They were busy. The food was good. I kept having to ask for my other side dish, though. I ordered salmon, of course. I love salmon. I order it every chance I get. Doug had a steak that was very tender! He cut a few pieces and put them on my plate so I could try it.

(I thought this picture was fitting for an anniversary pic because I wore a gold locket on my wedding day, and we did the lace doilies on all of the tables.)

(And just because I'm a writer, I LOVE this picture! I hope when I do become a best seller, my book will somehow play into a proposal!)

We didn't go see a movie this year, like we usually do. We just ate and went home because we're old. Sad, really. And we've become addicted to a certain show that was airing on AMC in black and white. I won't say what show that is, but I'm sure you can figure it out. It's a guilty pleasure. I don't watch much television, so it's like a treat for us. Doug, he has shows he watches every week like clockwork, but me, I have one show I look forward to watching, and I'm about to quit watching it because "reality" television is ridiculous. But this new television series has garnered my attention, and the Trinity Cat even watches it with me!

So we went home. I changed into my fat clothes, poured myself some dessert, fat free chocolate milk, and Trinity climbed in my lap. We watched the show, then just hung out at home. Not the most exciting twelfth anniversary, but it was much better than the eleventh anniversary, where we were too sick to care that we had been married for eleven years, went to lunch because Doug had class, and went to bed as soon as we got home.

And my friends at book club got together and threw me a party, and I missed it!!! It was total pants that I missed it.

February brought with it Doug's new job, Christi's new car, my father-in-law's hospitalization for sepsis, and my second neurology appointment.

Doug is loving his new job. He's been there a month now.  His boss is very nice to him. One day, Doug somehow locked the keys in the car and his boss drove him all the way back to the cottage so he could get the spare key off of my massive keychain collection. Doug was going to treat his boss to lunch for doing such a nice thing, but the boss wouldn't let him, and instead treated Doug to lunch! How cool is this guy?

My father-in-law spiked a fever at the nursing home, which prompted them to send him to the hospital. I'll do my best to explain the hospitalization, but I'm rather confused about it myself. I didn't like my fnl's doctor. I won't go into that, but I didn't like him at all. My fnl met the criteria for sepsis, but I never got an explanation as to what that meant. I thought it meant that he had not been tested for it yet, but again, no explanation was given upon my request. My fnl was awake for almost seventy-two hours straight, so they gave him narcotics through IV, Lortab to be exact, and they gave him too much, which prompted them to thread a pacemaker wire through his central line. Then, they moved him to a regular room too soon. He ended up staying in the ICU again. Then, on the day of his release, my fnl spiked a fever and they had him in isolation, but they went ahead and released him anyway. I'm STILL confused. I guess he's doing okay now. *shrugs*

(I want one of these!)

February also brought my neurology appointment, which was rescheduled thrice before this time. They had me coming back on the 13th of December. Then, I got a card in the mail saying they had to move it to January 2nd, but I was visiting relatives until late, and couldn't get up at the crack of down to go, so I rescheduled it for the next available, which was February 28th.

(This is NOT one of my scans. I just thought it was fitting since I'm blogging about MRIs and neurology appointments.)

Thursday was the big day. The appointment did not go well to be completely honest. They pushed and pulled on my extremities and found that the weakness in my right arm and overall right side is progressive. The neurologist suggested an MRI to see where the damage is located. I'm going out of town with Ed and Jamilaih to Florida this weekend, and I was hoping the MRI would be scheduled after I got back because I have to use this coming week to prepare for the trip, but instead, I'm having an MRI Monday night at 7:15. *sighs* And after every MRI I've had, I experience severe flu like symptoms the next day to the point where all I can do is lie in bed. I can't even stand up on my own. So I'm going to lose a day this week. And what's worse, the next day, I have a nail appointment that I can't reschedule this week before I leave on Saturday, so I'm going to have to suck it up and go. I don't like going to anybody else. I've been seeing Wendy for three years now, and she's great. Thankfully, Christi's going to drive me because I have no business behind the wheel on Tuesday.She's been such a good friend. Glad we reconnected in October. I need lots of prayer concerning the MRI, my trip, and my progressing weakness in my right side. I'm a writer, and hopefully one day, a best selling author, but I need both hands and both arms to achieve this goal, and other goals I have, like one day going to med school.

Today is March 2nd, and it also happens to be the birthday of one of my characters, Paul H. I assigned it to that character in honor of my friend, Richard, and accidentally in honor of my friend's little boy, Austin! So here's to March!

Let's hope it's better than I expected!

Hope your February was great and your March is even greater!