About Me

My photo
I write novels, eat dark chocolate, raise three children, love my husband, scrub toilets, ignore the laundry, and love a good story, but hardly ever in that order.



Powered by Blogger.




Wednesday, February 27, 2013

The Waiting

I am waiting. So far, I am not very good at it.

I finished a manuscript last summer and I'm waiting to see where and if it lands. 
Listen, I should tell you that I have a long, colorful history with God and his faithfulness. In all the years I've walked with him (we're up to year #31 this year), he has never, ever forgotten me. This, I feel, is a track record worth paying attention to. He has loved me better and longer than any of my junior high crushes, though I read their letters with much more attention than I did his for many years. He has cradled my heart in his hands more carefully than I treat my favorite bowl from Spain that has broken twice and made me cry both times. He has given me a freedom that reaches deep down into my heart, ignores the dirt and grime I let accumulate there, and pushes and nudges me until I agree to stand up and dance again.

In short, I know that he knows I'm waiting. In fact, he's in charge of the wait. 
But I keep sending him these addendum notes to our meetings. I'm really good at addendum notes. They go like this. "God. Hello. Thanks for the great meeting yesterday. I forgot to mention how I'd like you to hurry. Also, I am worried that you are not covering all the bases? Are you sure you know what you're doing with Publisher X? They are really good at marketing over there and you might want to consider their history with contemporary women's fiction. Plus, you're kind of late. And I kind of need to know what you're up to all the time because I like to control the universe and I'd like to take that little job off your hands."

Can you believe his patience level with me? I would expect a smiting every now and then, but I have yet to be smote. 

The thing is, I know the end of the story. I don't know the details and I know I won't write it as well if I keep trying to wrestle control out of his hands. But the end of the story is a good one, full of grace and struggle and triumph and sadness and a whole lot of waiting. Deep breath. Let the clock tick on and let me, please, take all those minutes and hours and let God do something beautiful with them. 

Monday, February 25, 2013

Oscar Who?

Well, people, the transformation is complete. I am officially completely out of it.

There was a time when I had seen all of the movies up for Best Picture at the Oscars. In fact, our best friends used to throw an Oscar party where folks would dress up in costumes reflecting their pick for best film. Now that I consider it, I don't know that we were any more hip then, but at least we knew enough about movies made in the last year to be able to have an adult conversation about the world. And we could raise that conversation and turn it into a costume.
This year, I have seen NOT EVEN ONE of the movies on the nomination list. I don't exactly equate movie-watching with good character, but I feel a bit loser-ish that I haven't seen EVEN ONE. And just to add insult to injury, I've seen only one of the animated features. Seriously! I don't even watch cartoons anymore! 
(By the way, who are these ClayMation people? Why are they tossing back the juice in a kids' movie?)

Marc and I have such good intentions. We TALK about seeing movies, which is kind of like talking about exercising. We want to watch Les Mis, for example, but when we are finally on a date and we have to reacquaint ourselves with our names, our life experiences, our hopes and dreams, blah, blah, blah, we hardly have the energy, time or cash to tack on another three hours of babysitting time to watch people sing and cut their hair.

See what I mean? Total, cynical loser. It's over. The change is complete.

Where's my Titanic costume?

Editor's Note: After hearing my sad story Saturday, Marc rented Argo and we watched it that evening. Wouldn't you know, that bugger won Best Picture last night?! My efficiency-obsessed husband was so happy! One and done, baby! One movie a year and we happened upon the winner! 

Friday, February 22, 2013


We have a winner! Congratulations, Becca Morgan from New York! Your day (and home) just got a bit brighter, I believe, with the help of Sarah McCoy and her cool stuff. 
Thanks for entering, folks. I hope you head back to Permanent Collection and Sarah's Etsy shop when you are next in need of a cute paper fix.

I feel the need for an entertaining video. I do. And so here is one that made me laugh. Of course, I am a little loopy by Friday and cannot be held accountable for what makes me laugh. But in case you are looped as well, this is a good option. Just in case you thought my lovey-dovey post on Marc made me regret the Valentine's post, I give you Crazy Valentine Girl.  

Happy weekend! 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Girls in the Know Giveaway 2.13

Hoo, boy, am I excited about this giveaway. 

Here's the thing: I am weirdo about paper. Seriously weird. My favorite store when I was a kid was a stationery store. I like paper like some people like cocaine. Okay, maybe not exactly like that, but I promise that if cute cards were illegal, I would absolutely find a way. Prison would be an acceptable risk.
So our Girl in the Know this time around is the lovely Sarah McCoy.
She has the most delightful business called The Permanent Collection and let me just tell you, she makes beautiful things. She does it all in the basement of her very charming home, and all on these gargantuan letterpresses. Sarah (with the occasional mechanical intervention by her husband, Andy) hand-creates fantastic pieces of all types, from original wall art to birth announcements to brand new business logos and branding concepts. 
She is a whirlwind of inspiration, she has her own Etsy shop, AND she wears really cute clothes. All while raising two sweet girls and cheering on the Iowa Hawkeyes. She is very patient in both regards.
 Sarah has been kind enough to offer an 8 x 10 House Rules print for one lucky winner.
You need only to like her Facebook page here OR you may message her at the same place. As always, if you are Facebook-adverse, feel free to comment below, but please do not enter more than one place. We will find you and will need to send you to Paper Prison.

I will announce the winner on Friday, February 22, 2013 at noon.

Happy entering and happy winning! 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Love and Marriage

I am married to a fantastic man.

He is patient with me. I can freak a person out, I assure you. And he has never left, even when I'm positive he wanted to at least take a side trip to Missouri. Or Tahiti. 

We've been married for fourteen years of glory, since we were twelve.
I have been asked on more than one occasion if I married Marc before he was legally an adult. I want to set the record straight here and assure you he had already voted in two presidential elections. 

But we were definitely very young. And clueless. Which is why it's all the sweeter that God gave him to me and me to him. Clueless beginnings ushered in real, good, difficult, deep and beautiful life and I am the luckiest of lucky to have Marc by my side. He makes me laugh, he thinks I'm pretty, and he loves my children with a stubborn, ferocious love.

He gave all our children a genetic cocktail that will provide for our ophthalmologist's children to attend the colleges of their choice.
Also, he always has Band-Aids, Purell, five water bottles, and floss. The man is nothing if not prepared.
Fourteen years of awesome. I love you, Marc. Thanks for sticking around.

P.S. Tune in Wednesday for the next Girls in the Know giveaway!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Shout-out for the Mamas

Listen, moms of little ones. I've been thinking about you lately.
I've been talking with some of you and have remembered well and anew the complete exhaustion of being the source of most things in the house. Food source, holding-in-tired-arms source, help-me-to-sleep source, clean-my-tush source...The grand pumba. The big cheese. The very, very tired big cheese.
I want you to know there is light at the end of the tired tunnel. You'll still be tired but you won't feel like crying all the time. You'll be able to shave both legs in one day. You'll be able leave the house in less time than it took for Columbus to stumble upon America. You'll go out on a date with your husband and won't have to wedge the time between feedings. Plus, you'll be less scary on your date because you'll be able to stay awake AND find an outfit that doesn't have bodily fluids/baby puke on it.  
I just want you to know you're doing great. You may not have brushed your teeth today, or emptied the dishwasher in a week, or worn a bra that is not lumpy and snappable in months, but you're doing great. I admire you. I know how you feel. And I salute you. Great work, Mama. That baby is a sweet, sweet gift, and YOU, my friend, are a gift to your child. That little one is nothing short God-made, and YOU, my friend, are the God-made keeper of that blessing. It is entirely okay that you have days when you merely hope no one gets arrested. Tomorrow will probably be better. 

You're doing great. Godspeed, dear girl. I'm just one step down the road, totally impressed with you and cheering you on.

P.S. Giveaway next week. Come back and see what's cute and maybe free!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Valentine's, Shmalentine's

Happy Valentine's Day Almost!

Do you feel love about this day? Back in the day of big bangs and Pepe jeans, I LOVED Valentine's Day. It brimmed with promise, even if I had no beau at the time. Flowers, a sweet note, love songs, walks in the rain, tours of medieval castles....wait. That's Ireland. Sorry.
So Valentine's Day.

Turns out, what I love most about V Day is making heart-shaped cookies and then eating all of them before the kids notice. I LOVE that part.

My whole non-interest in the real meaning of Valentine's Day makes Marc nervous every year. He asks me for days beforehand if he should get a V Day gift for me, if I want flowers and chocolate, if I secretly pine for one of these bears. 

I assure him that no, I do not and that if he ever left a bear like that sitting around our house, I would scream like a ninny and call the police. Big, fuzzy, stuffed things scare the heebies out of me.

I also assure him that he should pay no attention to the D.J. on yesterday's morning show who cited ominous statistics that show men who give only a card to their spouses on V Day should expect to be electric-shocked and those who give nothing should expect divorce papers within 60 days. As a rule, no one should take marital advice from a morning D.J. They wake up way too early in the day to be trusted. 

Am I unfeeling? What's my deal? I love Marc so much it hurts and I'm pretty sure he feels the same, so he can totally keep the teddy bear this year. And I'll hold off on the electric shock. 

But what about you? How do you celebrate this day? Anybody sharing the heart-shaped cookies or are you reading this post by the light of your phone, hiding in the closet with frosting dripping off your chin?

Monday, February 11, 2013

Breakaway 2012. Yowza.

Dear Breakaway Peeps,
I had the time of my life with you all.
That was a lot of love in one room. And a lot of noise and hormones. And whooping it up. In short, I fit right in.
Thanks for humoring me. 
And for revealing yourself to me. A LOT of yourself. Ahem. 
Thanks for sharing your stories.
And becoming a part of mine. 
I learned so much from you. Thanks for laughing at the right parts and for crying right along with me. You guys are awesome. May God continue to grow what He started and may we keep on handing Him the pen so He can write what He wants in us and through us.
You. Are. Beautiful. People.
p.s. Sorry about the dress. Don't tell your parents the speaker made you trip out. They might get the wrong idea.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Dennis Quaid Is Here

When you read these words, I will be with the teenagers. I hope they like me and I hope they don't fall asleep, roll their eyes without pause, or text furiously during my talks. In short, I hope they are more polite than I was as a teenager. I'll let you know how it goes.

In the meantime, I have felt the need to laugh lately. I think it's winter. Winter and I are on bad terms. I only liked him hanging around for a little while but I'm really sick of him now. He bugs me. And I want to feel my toes when I go outside but Winter keeps stepping on them.

Plus, I have become a little loony and have started creating season-people in my head.

I wish Summer would come over. We were so close a few months ago, hanging out all the time, going for walks at sunset, eating ice cream in the park. Now she just lets my calls go straight to voicemail.

See what I mean? I need some laughter around here.

For whatever reason, this does it every time. Enjoy Dennis. And you have my full permission to start announcing your presence when you enter a room. Try it. And then send me the video. Winter and I will watch it together.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Signs, Signs, Everywhere are Signs

Now that I'm noticing signage, I'm really getting a charge out of how weird so many of them are. Who makes signs? Are they the same, humorless people who work at the DMV? I saw a few particularly helpful signs on a recent trip and I felt the grave responsibility of sharing them with you. Think of it as a Public Service Announcement, signage style. (Not to be confused with Gangham Style, but I bet these signs will make even more sense if you do the dance while you look at them.)

First, breastfeeding is depressing, especially on airplanes.

Second, using laser vision at the exit nearest your seat will make the time pass quickly even if you didn't score a seat in business class.
Third, Wheelchair Ejection is a little known but awesome ride at Disneyland. Get a Fast Pass first and come back later because the lines are killer.
Finally, infants who don floatation devices at night are likely to get their greatest ideas in the quiet of a midnight float. Please don't interrupt their train of thought, and for goodness' sake, don't let them wear socks.
Happy Wednesday!

Monday, February 4, 2013

On the Bookshelf: Unorthodox by Deborah Feldman

Holy cats, did I happen upon a great book.

I honestly cannot remember where I bought it. Do you have this problem? Buying books and hoarding them, stacking them up in your house, by your bed? Compulsively making lists of what you want to read? Purchasing them and then forgetting the time and place because everything else ceases to matter when you've brought it home and have smelled the pages?

I. Am. El. Weirdo.

So first I smelled the pages (check!) and then I read this:
Feldman is a young woman from Brooklyn who grew up in an isolated and conservative Hasidic Jewish community. I knew a bit about Hasidism but this book is so intimate, so beautifully written, such a can't-look-away glimpse into a world relatively close to mine but eons away. I ate it up, all the while marveling at this woman's courage and at how legalism and rejection of grace can take many, many forms.

Worth a read, for sure. Plus the pages smell awesome.

Click here to buy Unorthodox.