Saturday, September 27, 2008

Passing of a Legend

I'm so sad that Paul Newman is no longer with us. He was always one of my favorite actors and at the very top of my list of favorite celebrities.
He used his celebrity to set a great example for others. This handsome, talented man did what so few mega-rich Hollywood actors do - he set up charities, he dared to have a political voice and he stayed married to the same woman for half a century. As a philanthropist, he helped raise more than $200 million for various causes.
When I see celebs and company execs buying more and more for themselves, outdoing one another and living in the lap of ostentatious luxury, I cringe. They could all learn a lot from the example set by Paul Newman.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A Monster is Eating my Dining Room

Every November, my RWA chapter, Central Florida Romance Writers hosts a huge multi-author signing at a local mall to benefit the Adult Literacy League. Usually we have more than 20 Romance Authors from the state and the Romancing the Holidays signing draws some media attention and hundreds of readers. For the last two years, I've been one of the organizers of this endeavor, as well as a signer.
This year, I've added to my duties by taking on the task of putting together the amazing goody bags we give out to the first 75 customers at the event. These are the most amazing goody bags ever and usually have at least 3 autographed books, hundreds of bookmarks, pens and other promo items inside. Now, assembling the bags is an almost overwhelming task that requires half a dozen volunteers working for several hours. Before the bag stuffing day, though, these books and promo items arrive in my mailbox (or more often at my door since my mailman can't fit all the boxes and packages in the mailbox) for months leading up to the signing. From there, I move them into my dining room since that's where we assemble the bags. With the bag stuffing party weeks away now, my dining room had now become more boxes of stuff than furniture. The corner where I stash the items has grown into half the room and I now realize, the room's been eaten by this tremendous promo monster.
Not that I'm complaining. I'm glad to help other authors promote their work and even more thrilled for all the donated books. So, if you happen to have any extras of your books sitting around gathering dust, why not ship them over to me where they will be put to good use. While you're at it, throw in a bunch of bookmarks, magnets or pens singing your books' praises! If you have anything you'd like to send, please leave me your email addy in the comments or you can email me from my website.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

MeMe from H#ll!

This is all Katie's fault. So here it is: The world's longest Meme. For those I tag, you must add a question.
1. What is your occupation? Romance Author and House Frau

2. What color are your socks right now? Don't wear them

3. What are you listening to right now? Disturbia (Rihanna - by way of DD's computer in the next room!)

4. What was the last thing that you ate? sugar free jello with cool whip

5. Can you drive a stick shift? Nope

6. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? Pink

7. Last person you spoke to on the phone? My sister, Ruth

8. Do you like the person who sent this to you? Of course

9. Favorite drink? Cosmo

10. What is your favorite sport to watch? Gymnastics

11. Have you ever dyed your hair? Oy - yes. Won't do it again until I see a few grays

12. Pets? 2 cats that I love dearly

13. Favorite food? ice cream

14. Last movie you watched? Young at Heart (Documentary - highly recommend)

15. Favorite Day of the year? Have to say my birthday

16. What do you do to vent anger? Yell - yikes - I'm telling all my well-guarded secrets!

17. What was your favorite toy as a child? Barbies

18. What is your favorite, fall or spring? Spring

19. Hugs or kisses? Hugs

20. What kind of pie? Pumpkin

21. Living arrangements? A house

22. When was the last time you cried? Um - during my last (and every) period - no reason, just felt like the thing to do.

23. What is on the floor of your closet? Shoes, a plastic tote full of gifts for future use

24. Favorite smell? baby powder

25. What inspires you? news stories, movies

26. What are you afraid of? flying

27. Plain, cheese or spicy hamburgers? cheese

28. Favorite car? Jag

29. Favorite cat breed? Ragdoll

30. Number of keys on your key ring? 2

31. How many years at your current job? 3 1/2 since I actually held one

32. Favorite day of the week? Saturday

33. How many states/provinces have you lived in? Two

34. How many countries have you been to? 14

35. How much do you love "Knowing Me, Knowing You" by ABBA? I like it - don't love it.

36. The name of the first person you kissed (romantically)? Jay (better known as Terror - don't ask)

37. Are you the oldest child, youngest child, middle or only? Youngest

38. What is your favorite TV series currently still on? Mad Men

39. What is your favorite book right now? Patty Jane's House of Hair by Lorna Landvik

40. How many children do you have? 2

I tag: Macy and Mimi

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Funeral for a Friend

No, I'm not talking about a person, but DD's beloved cockatiel, Terri. She found Terri outside about 4 years ago, a recent escape from somewhere nearby, we were sure. DH came to the rescue and ushered the frightened bird into a box and brought her inside.

Problem: We already had a (very aggressive) cat. So, Terri became DD's personal pet and was given a large cage in DD's bedroom, from which the cat was forever banished. Eventually, we let DD get a companion bird and all was great. Until last night when poor DD went into her room and found Terri stiff on the floor of the cage. The tears seemed to go on forever. And you know if you are a mom, that rips your heart out, even though it's a natural part of having pets. I put myself in her shoes and thought about my dear kitty. I think I'll cry for weeks when she goes.

So, this afternoon, we will have a funeral after school for Terri. DH is researching Bird Funerals on Google so he has a jumping off point, so to speak.

Some of these life lessons sting more than others. Think I may have to break the diet and have a good, stiff drink prior to the ceremony!