Monday, September 16, 2013

Introspection Sucks!!

As you may know, I have been writing the past few weeks about me.. really all about me and my feelings and the way I have shoved parts of me aside for way to long.. and frankly, it's beginning to bore me. I know if I feel that way.. how must anyone else reading these posts feel?

The thing is I need to say some of the stuff, I need to let it go.. but all this whining, poor me stuff.. yeah, that's so for the birds. 

The truth is, I have had a pretty good life. My childhood wasn't perfect, my parents were flawed and made mistakes (I of course have never made a parental mistake). But as imperfect as it was.. It was awfully good.. I traveled, I played sports, I went to camp (because I wanted to.. I wasn't shipped off to get rid of me.. ok maybe I was for a week but it was a blast LOL), I was active in scouts and school. Shoot I even went to private protestant High School because I wanted to.. Yep my non believer parents forked out a monthly tuition so I could go to private school! And most importantly of all, I was loved. 

I had a large extended family that I adored being a part of.. I always felt a little like that square peg.. but that's on me.. If I didn't quite fit, that's ok, they still loved, odd, loud, brash little ole me. I wasn't a perfect child.. they weren't perfect people.. we all just were.. and are.

So.. how did I get so messed up? I had all that going for me.. Oh did I mention I grew up in Southern California? 30-45 minutes from the ocean, 1 1/2 hours from the mountains, 20 minutes (in heavy traffic) from Disneyland, 10 from Knott's Berry Farm.. yeah, life was tough.. now back to the question.. How did I get so messed up? Somewhere I stopped believing in me.. I started letting everyone else, no matter how good intended, shape me. In doing that I lost all of me.. So I want to blame the entire world for who I am.. yeah.. not gonna wash..

 In losing myself and letting others define me I came across as week and useless.. ever feeding the negative impression of myself. If I couldn't stand up for myself of course someone else was going to make decisions.. Taking that power back is hard.. Why? Because after 50 years.. people get into habits.. now my struggles seem like a spoiled child lashing out.. I'm not really!! I know I have had it pretty darn good. 

But for now.. maybe I need to have it not so good.. Maybe I need to struggle on my own.. ok, did that while raising the kids.. but maybe I need to let go of the harsh control on my emotions.. my true strength has always been my ability to feel.. So now I need to allow myself to do that again. Stop thinking being "too sensitive" is bad.. I am sensitive, not too sensitive.. sensitive!! It's who I am!! Deal with it! I am!


This post was written with a smile.. no stupid emo stuff today!!

Friday, September 13, 2013

It's Coming OFF!!

It's been a while since I spoke of my weight loss plans, diet, goals, etc.. but I have some seriously awesome news!!

Yesterday I actually got on a scale for the first time since I started this 3 W (Walking, Water and Watching What I eat). I avoided scales for a number of reasons.. but mostly so I wouldn't be disappointed. I mean work really hard and then discover I had only lost a couple of pounds? So I waited

Now you all know, I have had clothing discoveries.. (where tops hang on me, my pants fall from me, little things like that) but I hadn't even considered purchasing new clothes as of yet. Honestly, I want to be able to go in and buy clothes that are two sizes smaller (it will be ok if they are a little snug) so I can wear them for a longer period of time than just one size smaller (cuz I am so gonna shrink out of those too). 

Since I have been at my cousins house I have been eating better? Well more consistently (family dinners and all that) and I haven't been walking as much.. So I was a bit worried. I even imagined that my pants were starting to get snug again.. At least one pair.. and yet my pants that were always just too tight for comfort are loose on me, so those other pants can't be too snug. 

BUT.. I forced myself to finally step on a scale.. are you ready?? Oh sorry, one last caveat.. I loose weight all over, so it's highly conceivable that I can loose quite a bit and still be wearing the same size clothes.. Quite a bit like say 45 POUNDS!! Yes that is right as of yesterday I had lost 45 POUNDS!! Can you see me doing the happy dance? I am a little of my goal as I wanted to have lost 50 lbs by Sept 1.. but I think I can live with the disappointment..

As always, each success story gets me re excited!! And makes me push that much harder towards my goal!! Hopefully by Christmas, I will look good enough that I am happy to share pictures.. and by Word Girl's College Graduation next spring.. I am so gonna be SMOKIN!!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

I Am An American

I had tons of pictures I considered sharing today.. but this one touched my heart.. There are thousands, tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands maybe even millions of bikers descending upon Washing DC today to ride in their own parade to commemorate 9/11. To remind our lawmakers who and what we are and to honor those who fell for this cause. Both on 9/11 and since! 

The Bikers were denied a parade permit, some say because they waited too late and some say because of more nefarious reasons, but they will still create their own parade. They just have to obey all the traffic laws.. well all the laws. Washington DC allows for non permitted parades and such as long as you don't break any laws.. What would have been an hour or two honoring the fallen, becomes a day long event.. causing untold traffic issues (I'm sure)

I believe in the United States of America, as a government of the people, by the people, for the people; whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed; a democracy in a republic; a sovereign Nation of many sovereign States; a perfect union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, justice, and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.

I therefore believe it is my duty to my country to love it, to support its Constitution, to obey its laws, to respect its flag, and to defend it against all enemies.

My question is, when did bikers become the symbol for this great country? When did something that stood for rebellion and anarchy become the leaders on how to salute, respect and live for our country? It's interesting isn't it, that our rebels once again have to show us how to stand for our rights.. stand for our country and stand for our constitution. While our lawmakers waffle, our oh so proper, snivel and our baby boomers (ok not all of them) laugh in glee.. Our Bikers, our Rebels once again say I. AM. AN. AMERICAN!!!! which means what? I CAN!!


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Hearing Voices

What does this pic have to do with hearing voices? Well nothing, I just like the picture
Sometimes I hear voices in my head.. ok, now that I have pretty much declared that I am nuts.. allow me to expound.. Seriously, I hear voices.. Often as I go through life I hear the "voices" of others, loser, fatty, useless, no good, ugly.. you know those voices.. In all reality most of the voices I hear are more what I think of myself than what others think of me. Most of the time, people either have no opinion of me or even have a positive one. The only voices I am hearing are my own. 

Sometimes, it's guilt.. you know how much your mother wants you to be happy and you aren't living a happy life so you are sure she is so disappointed in you (this happens a lot). Your mother is neither disappointed or unhappy with you. She still loves you, is still proud of you and still stands beside you. No matter that you aren't living the life she dreamed of for you. 

Years ago (coincidentally enough, right before my marriage ended) my mother was visiting and turned to me and said "You know, I am really proud of you. You chose a life I didn't want for you but you are making it work. You are raising great kids and accomplishing your dreams" Yeah.. she said it.. too bad I didn't tape it *grins*. She was sincere too. She isn't the type to waste her time on sarcasm. It remains one of my most treasured moments.. because I constantly hear my projections of her thoughts and those voices never say she is proud of me. 

I think that is one of my (probably everyone's) greatest flaws.. projecting your thoughts into other's words. You have to let that go. Stop expecting others to think you are a failure.. most of them really don't care.. Another great mom quote.. 

                 when I was about 20 or so, I told my mom that I felt that                            everyone was talking about me and used the old.. whenever I                        walk into a room everyone stops talking line.. my mom's response                  and believe me it's a keeper.. "What makes you think you are so                    important that everyone is talking about you?" 

Now... there are those who could argue that she was smashing down my self   esteem but they would be wrong, that really wasn't what she meant.. She was making a valid observation.. Hello, you are NOT Queen of the Universe (ok, I am but I haven't sent out the memo to everyone yet), other people have lives, thoughts, concerns that do not involve you. To this day, I say that to myself when I am unsure or feeling insecure about what others think of me. 

As often as I point out that these blogs are about me.. not anyone else, I have to remember that most of the world feels the same way. It's about them.. they have their own voices to deal with.. Their own insecurities.. Do they really care what is going on in my life? Nope.. 

The select few.. my family, you know the one who was so mean to me (that btw was sarcasm)... just want me to succeed.. Sure dealing with the pressure of just whose definitions of success matter is hard. But we all have to go through it. I may be on shaky ground I may be trying to figure out how to be true to myself.. how to live my dreams not fail at the dreams of others but my foundation remains forever solid. I am loved.. Dearly.. I know that for a fact and I need to say it more regularly!!


Monday, September 9, 2013

Another Post on Family

If you have been reading my blogs, you might get the impression that I don't like my family or I resent them. When in fact the exact opposite is true. I admire these individuals beyond anyone else in the world. They are strong, resilient, tough, giving, smart, unique individuals. Most of whom have found their own paths in life and have figured out how to juggle who they are with who society expects them to be. It's not dislike when I make some statements rather envy. 

I want to be one of them and the only way that can happen is if I let myself be me. Oh sure I am sure I won't connect with all of them. I mean how could I they are a vast and varied group of people. But I know my little piece of the puzzle is just as important to the family picture than all of theirs. I just have to find where I fit. 

And because I have spent most of my life trying to force the fit, I don't. Does that make sense? See this is why these posts aren't about anyone else but me. 

I will refer to one person who I find absolutely amazing. My mom.. oh sure she drives me batty and God willing she will be messing with my head for decades to come, BUT she is an amazing woman. Now in general I don't write about her because she doesn't like to have her life out there. So this isn't about her as a person, it's about my mom.. yep making it all about me.

I jokingly tell my friends to watch out when meeting my family because I am the nice one, the one the rest of them walk all over (implying I am a pushover) but funnily enough, my mom refers to herself in a similar manner. Now I see a tough as nails woman who still scares me straight.. but really she has a huge heart that has allowed others to take advantage.. until she gets fed up.. Then they get confused.. how could she be so mean? yeah.. she's not mean, she's treating you the way the rest of the world would have but because she has been letting you walk all over her for most of your life.. it's seems extreme. 

I admire this woman so much.. I know every time I go somewhere new, I think of all the questions I need to ask. All the things I need to find out and discover all the secret worlds a community has to offer. This was a gift from my mother.. She is never lost, just always in some new place to be discovered. There is ALWAYS something interesting about where ever she is. And she has passed that interest on to her children and grandchildren, even when they don't realize it. 

There is so much more to my mom.. but respecting her desire to not have her life broadcast all over the internet, I am trying to be vague.. 

But whenever someone should think I don't love or respect or admire the heck out of this women, think again.. I am who I am, able to fight back, able to write these blogs, able stand tall, because she forced me to fight for myself.. Her dreams for me were so big they were a tad intimidating but as I wander this particular journey, I know.. without those dreams and her strength, I wouldn't be the woman I am right now.. The woman fighting the constraints put upon me by what I "think" I am supposed to be.

So thanks mom


Saturday, September 7, 2013


Do you realize how much of who we are is defined by our family? How we let others tell us who and what we are? Of course in turn we do the same thing. It's part of the human nature I think. Finding your niche. 

The problem isn't when family defines you, it's when the definition doesn't fit.. and yet you still let it stand. You don't have to be a witch or an ogre about it but you do need to define yourself. 

I was initially, the daughter, then the chatty one, then the happy one,  then the smart one, then the creative one, then the "religious one, then the one who didn't live up to her potential, then the one who can't make it on her own, then... see what I mean.. I was never just one of those things. I have been several of them together and none of them. I am a mixture of all those things. But I am so much more. I am the one who stood alone, the one who was different, the one who was always on the outside, the one who found her own beat, the one who won't give up on herself, the one who demands justice.. 

As much as I rage against my family defining me, I will admit that I have definitions of my family as well. Not all of them are pretty.. but most of them make me seem like a lesser being.. There are the beautiful ones (My sister and a few of my cousins). The smart ones (my aunt and yes a few of my cousins). The nice ones (most of Aunt Margie's children). The mean ones (not gonna say which ones). The athletic ones, the academic ones, the.. see what I mean. I label them as well.. and yet none of them are just one thing. And I bet if I were to ask all of them would feel at a loss, less than what they seem or aware of their failings. 

While we can accept the definitions and make them part of us, because often they are right. We don't have to accept the ones that don't fit. I am learning how to let go of those definitions and slowly regaining my balance. It has been a healing road I have been walking.. and eventually I hope that I can embrace myself that when I face my family, I am the one who made it through the darkness. The one who defined herself, the one who smiles through tragedy and triumphed over failure.. 

Oh sure, I am still gonna be the daughter, the chatty one (seriously I keep trying to close my mouth but the words just pop out), The creative one (oh I hope so)... The one who believes, the one who has faith, the stubborn one, the defiant one.. 

The only thing I don't want to be is the one who is alone..


Friday, September 6, 2013

Broken Dreams that Aren't

I have spent much time recently dealing with the past and will continue to do so. It's needed, sorry if these blogs seem down and depressing.. but it's kind of fun to be able to write about me.. and not have to listen to what's wrong with me.. 

But I had an interesting morning and wanted to share. I was feeling sort of broken, like I wasn't going to make it through the day (I have those a lot.. but look I always make it) and was going to write about it. So I started looking for pictures of broken stuff. What I found was an amazing assortment of art using broken materials. Beautiful, creative, captivating pictures.. That got me thinking..

We have all been broken in some matter or other.. ALL. OF. US.. some people can go through life never really feeling that pain. Some remain broken and are tossed aside, not because they are not wanted or loved but because they toss themselves there. Some, like me are broken and refuse to acknowledge it.. Some are truly broken and may be beyond repair..

The difference is, what do we do with our brokenness  Do we whine and cry and regret our broken dreams? Or do we create new ones from the pieces we have left?

I know I have deep deep dreams and things I still want to do with my life. I am 51 and free (sort of). My kids are grown, I don't own property, I really have nothing keeping me in one place.. So it's time I used those broken pieces to create new dreams.. for the life I  find.. not the one I didn't


Don't worry all, I am sure tomorrow I will be back to being depressing *grins*

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Thursday's Thoughts

So I have been doing some heavy thinking lately. I know you all have seen it.. since I have been blathering away about it all right here on my blog.. But today I am just not motivated. I was up reading Sherrilynn Kenyon's Styxx last night.. and well let's just say I am a bit sluggish.. (BTW AWESOME BOOK)

Since I am not motivated and my brain is somewhat thoughtless.. I thought I would share someone elses with you all today!


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Just One Moment Can Change Everything

As you know, I am trying to deal with a lifetime of ignoring things. Or rather a lifetime of using the talent of ignoring things as a way to cope with my surrounding world.

I have never really ignored things.. I just refused to let them affect me. Not always a good thing because you spend so much time pushing them down, ever deeper that you aren't even aware that they are corroding you. 

Years ago (I was pregnant with PITA BOY) we were all home for Christmas, the last time. I hadn't seen my older brother in years. He has had a hard and difficult life.. anyway, it had been years since we had seen each other and I was really excited. But, one single comment ruined the entire experience for me. And in a way ruined another part of me.

I used to be a nervous giggler.. when I was angry I either cried or giggled but when I was in a tense situation I giggled. It was an escape valve.. let some pressure off. But you see, I wasn't allowed to feel pressure. What did I have to feel pressure about. I was the "good" child. Honestly, folks do you even realize how hard it is to constantly be the "good" child? The one that can be pushed aside because she is happy all the time? Or whose issues are not as important because, well she is happy and smiling? The one who NEVER causes any problems.. and yet gets in constant trouble (due to coming directly after the problem child). Yeah, no pressure there. But at that time, I was just excited.. So it was excited tension. And Doug, the brother I had adored, whom I had spent a lifetime being taught was more important than I. looked at me with this subtle contempt and said "I forgot how annoying that giggle of yours is" swoosh in one moment I was destroyed..

And now 23 years later, no one can accuse me of being a giggler. No one has since that day. It was destroyed.. One final cut, in a lifetime of cuts. I have never told anyone that story. Never let anyone know how deeply that devastated me. Probably because no one would have seen it for what it was. What they would have seen was me being "over sensitive" (I honestly HATE that phrase)

I don't know when I started protecting the feelings of others at the expense of my own. But I do.. I push my feelings ever deeper.. taking the pains of others into myself. Taking the opinions and slights into myself, making them my reality. Using their more than slightly skewered "facts" to shape my reality.. To make my choices.. 

The thing is we never know how one simple phrase can destroy a person.. likewise we never know how a single act of kindness can change a life. We read stories about it all the time.. but do we actively work at being the person who smiles at others? Who wants to be kind? I used to be that person naturally but let others beat at me until I became hard, brittle, angry.. Honestly, I am not overly fond of that person.

I have this friend, who reviews on my book blogs with me. She is this bright light, constant joy, almost innocent.. yet I know her life has not been perfect. I know she has had challenges and disappointments. She just didn't let them ruin the inner her.. I admire her so much for her strength. Her ability to live life as herself. She doesn't know that she inspires me daily. In some ways she inspired me to reclaim myself. To be truly me again..

Working on it folks!!


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Memories of a Beautiful Friend

Picture provided by Laurie Morgan Perschbacher

A Friend of mine woke up to this the second day in a row!! Now for those of you who don't appreciate a good TP.. in California it's done pretty regularly. Not just for homecoming or such. We do it at slumber parties, drunken parties (umm well, lol) whenever the mood strikes us. 

But when I saw this I thought of my friend Diane. Diane was my absolute best friend in Junior High. There were so many wonderful minutes to our friendship. It sort of peetered out when we went to High School as we made different choices and had different friends,as a matter of fact Diane ended up marrying one of my older brother's best friends. 

But those minutes in middle school remain forever in my heart. One of my favorite memories of Diane, was a weekend spent TPing our friends houses. For those of you who aren't Californians, at the time there was a fine for every roll of toilet paper you were caught with. So besides trying to be quiet enough not to get caught by the owners.. you had to be stealthy and not get caught by the cops..

OK.. back up a bit.. One night a group of us tp'd Diane's house.. And I left a tv guide on her front porch, why? Because she was always calling me and asking me what was on tv.. seriously every single night.. and I was always telling her to just get a tv guide.. Well not too stealthy of me because of course Diane figured out who did it. But then, because I was her best friend, I was obligated to share the names of the others in the car.. (oops must have been freshmen year cuz no way would my mom let me drive around in a teenagers car when I was in HS).

Anyway, Diane and I were diabolical.. we got a bunch of newspapers and used her mom's lawnmower to shred them.. we had bags for each house. We also learned that using a single mom's lawnmower was much smarter than using my dad's. He was not pleased. Then we got somewhere between 25 and 50 rolls of toilet paper (per house) and 6 tv guides..

For the next three nights (yes it was labor day weekend.. or memorial day.. either way a long weekend) Diane and I went from house to house, two a night, and exacted her revenge. One night her mom drove us, one night my mom drove us and one night my fabulous Uncle Jr drove us. That was the truly fun night.. because one of the houses was on Greenleaf, which is a major street in our hometown.. So we had to hide every few minutes when one of us or my Uncle (parked across the street) would shout COPS.. yeah, not so stealthy.. but we didn't get caught. 

I have missed Diane for many years and was greatly saddened when another of my brother's friends told me in passing that Dave Eliott's wife died of Breast Cancer a few years back. Dave, the friend who told me, was not aware of my connection to Diane and had no idea how much those simple words made me grieve. I always thought that someday we would connect again..

While I no longer have Diane, I do have some very wonderful memories of her!!


Monday, September 2, 2013

Serial Books

I am sure most of you are aware of the fact that I really am not a huge fan of the serial format. Mostly because I read way to fast and fro me.. a book that is part of a series is a "seral" book. Seriously, they come out too far apart so getting one book in serial format would drive me bonkers. 

This is not a new thing for me, I was "that" kid in school. You know the one who read the entire book instead of just the assigned chapters. It's not in my making to read a book only part way through. But that's me! And that's an important statement. I personally prefer my books to come all together.. BUT there is an entire market out there for people who feel differently. 

Those people who either don't read much, or read slowly, or get intimidated by "big" books. There are also those who don't or can't fit a lot of reading into their schedule.. Or.. I am sure there are tons of other reasons. Maybe it's the fiction of being able to think you are getting the book sooner that way. Who knows? Honestly, who cares, they like serial books.. And now the market is offering them that option again. 

Again? yes again.. Serial books have been around forever. Initially it was a way to get stories out there. Face it, back in the day.. when people couldn't really afford books, no one wanted to print a "story" they were much more highbrow.. After all those darn stories wouldn't last.. it was a fad (you know like the bikini). But amazingly enough the stories took off.. and over time they became *gasp* classics.. Some very famous authors wrote serials.. (note the highlighted names below)

Definition of a serial book:

"Serialized fiction surged in popularity during Britain's Victorian era, due to a combination of the rise of literacy, technological advances in printing, and improved economics of distribution.A significant majority of 'original' novels from the Victorian era actually first appeared in either monthly or weekly installments in magazines or newspapers.The wild success of Charles Dickens' The Pickwick Papers, first published in 1836, is widely considered to have established the viability and appeal of the serialized format within periodical literature. During that era, the line between "quality" and "commercial" literature was not distinct.

In the German speaking countries, the serialized novel was widely popularized by the weekly family magazine Die Gartenlaube, which reached a circulation of 382,000 by 1875.

In France Alexander Dumas and Eugene Sue were masters of the serialized genre. The Three Musketeers and The Count of Monte Cristo both appeared as a Feuilleton. The Count of Monte Cristo was stretched out to 139 installments. Eugene Sue’s serial novel Le Juif errant increased circulation from 3,600 to 25,000 of the Le Constitutionnel. Production in book form soon followed and serialization was one of the main reasons that nineteenth-century novels were so long. Authors and publishers kept the story going if it was successful since authors were paid by line and by episode.

Some writers were prolific. Alexander Dumas wrote at an incredible pace, oftentimes writing with his partner twelve to fourteen hours a day, working on several novels for serialized publication at once.

However, not every writer could keep up with the serial writing pace. Wilkie Collins, for instance, was never more than a week before publication. The difference in writing pace and output in large part determined the author's success, as audience appetite created demand for further installments. 

While American periodicals first syndicated British writers, over time they drew from a growing base of domestic authors. The rise of the periodicals like Harpers and the Atlantic Monthly grew in symbiotic tandem with American literary talent. The magazines nurtured and provided an economic sustainability for writers, while the writers helped grow the periodicals' circulation base. During the late 19th century, those that were considered the best American writers first published their work first in serial form and then only later in a completed volume format. As a piece in Scribner's Monthly explained in 1878, it is only the "second and third rate novelist who could not get published in a magazine and is obliged to publish in a volume, and it is in a magazine that the best novelists always appear first." Among the American writers that wrote in serial form were Henry James, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Herman Melville. A large part of the appeal for writers at the time was the broad audiences that serialization could reach, which would then grow their following for published works.

One of the first significant American works to be released in serial format is Uncle Tom's Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe, which was published over a 40-week period by National Era, an abolitionist periodical, starting with the June 5, 1851 issue.

Serialization was so standard in American literature that authors from that era often built installment structure into their creative process. Henry James, for example, often had his works divided into multi-part segments of similar length.The consumption of fiction during that time was different than the 20th century. Instead of being read in single volume, a novel would often be consumed by readers in installments over a period as long as a year, with the authors and periodicals often responding to audience reaction.

Serialization was also popular throughout Europe. In France, Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary was serialized in La Revue de Paris in 1856. In Russia, The Russian Messenger serialized Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina from 1873 to 1877 and Fyodor Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov from 1879 to 1880.

Other famous English language writers who wrote serial literature for popular magazines included Wilkie Collins, inventor of the English detective novel and author of The Moonstone; Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who created the Sherlock Holmes stories originally for serialization in The Strand magazine; and the Polish writer BolesÅ‚aw Prus, author of the serialized novels The Outpost (1885–86), The Doll (1887–89), The New Woman (1890–93) and his sole historical novel, Pharaoh (the latter, exceptionally, written entire over a year's time in 1894–95 and serialized only after completion, in 1895–96)." *Wikipedia (yeah I know but it had all the facts I gathered elsewhere in one nice article"

Oh My:

Charles Dickens

Alexander Dumas
Eugene Sue
Wilkie Collins
Henry James
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Herman Melville
Gustave Flaubert
Leo Tolstoy
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

I write this today because I read this review on amazon about an author's book. Now a review is supposed to be about the book. Yes, I got a bit irked when an author made a snarky comment about how a review is written.. but I will agree that when you write a book review, you are reviewing the book.. Have I emphasized that enough? My reason for asking is.. well let me show you the review:

"I'm of the mindset that if your book or game is any good, you don't need to resort to sleazy tactics to sell your books. Selling "parts" of a book falls under sleazy tactics. You might have had something here if you hadn't resorted to 1940's sucker techniques. Needless to say, I will not fall for this. I've seen amazing authors sell their books, and full books at that, for a portion of what this kind of nonsense will steal from people. And BTW-- a full 13% of this book was ads. You really don't have much respect for your readers, do you?"

Except for declaring that this book was a serial book, do you see anything.. I mean anything telling you about the book? Yeah me neither. 

This reviewer was abusing her Amazon Reviewing responsibility.. You are supposed to actually review a product.. not make snarky, and less than accurate remarks. Obviously, her intelligence is limited.. I mean she failed to get her facts straight on when serial books originated. She was also insulting an entire generation or two of people. Those books in the 1940's were important. They brought, entertainment to a dark time.. So, stupid and insulting. Sorry, but I am a firm believer that if you are going to insult someone or something get your facts straight. 

But I have to agree with her, I mean those authors mentioned above are surely beyond contempt, having never written anything that was meaningful, creative, talented or wait.. long living! 

So what do you think? Are you a fan of the serial novel? Or do you agree with the reviewer who needs to denigrate an author for trying something "old". I won't mention the author or book this review was about but I will say that three of my absolute favorite authors are selling serial books.. (if I could just get them to send me the entire book in advance I would be such a happy camper).


Caution to one and all.. this is a repost of what I wrote on my review blog Tea and Book.. I am compelled to share my thoughts far and wide (lol) and would love to hear your thoughts on the subject

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Aug 31, A Day Late

For most of you Aug 31 is the day Princess Diana died.. and yeah, I remember that. Only for me it is the day my marriage ended (still not sure if it was a happy or sad thing) and more importantly it was the day two woman who helped mold my life were born.

Do you have days in the year that mean something to you. Days other than your birthday, anniversary, kids birthday, holidays etc..? Well I do and August 31 is one of those days. In all honestly I should have written this yesterday but the words weren't there.

My Grandma, Dorthea Mae (Crabtree) Branch (There were a few other names thrown in there but I only know one of them and didn't want to ignore the other). My Grandma was a century ahead of her time. Had she been born into
My cousin Linda Comstock made this! hence the Aunt Dot
this world.. she would be president. Her teachings and thought process were so ahead of her time that I hear the pundits blowing smoke, I mean stating their new and innovative opinions and I think, That's not new.. I heard that when I was eight! Grandma was alive, vibrant.. tough as nails and proud of it. She could do ANYTHING she set her mind to and did! While she seemed to enjoy the occasional man (enough to marry three of them) she didn't really have a use for them.. I am sure there were all sorts of reasons why but for me, it didn't matter. She was Katherine Hepburn strong.. classy, gorgeous and yes a tough old broad (that was a compliment back in the day). I remember when we were kids and went to the mountains to go inner tubing and sledding.. there was grandma sliding down the hill right next to us. 

When I was a child she needed a traveling companion.. I go picked!! I was lucky enough to travel with her every two years for the next few years.. Hawaii (for a month), The East Coast, The West Coast.. and we didn't just travel we say, we learned. It was experiences that stayed with me forever. 

She always had this nifty little sayings and quotes Like:

  •  THERE IS NO SUCH WORD AS CAN'T. YOU ARE AN AMERICAN AND THE LAST FOUR LETTERS OF AMERICAN SPELL I CAN [believe me we rarely used the words I can't.. but as I got older and had kids.. I was a brownie leader and whenever the girls would say I can't I would say.. “Now if I had said that around my grandma she would say...(insert phrase here)” to this day.. those little girls now 19 – 22 can be heard to quote me when someone says I can't to them.]
Aside from that I have one (ok two great memories) of my grandma.

 What is hard to believe is that while I spent hours, days, weekends, weeks and even months at a time with Grandma I never and I mean never remember her cooking for me. Now we all know she fed me.. but to this day I don't remember what except for these two occasions..

Grandma had those wonderful orange trees in her backyard and I thought hey wouldn't it be cool to learn how to make freshly squeezed orange juice. So I asked Grandma.. “how do you make orange juice” *note I must learn to phrase my questions properly as I didn't ask for fresh juice and I did ask how “she” make juice.. Anyway, grandma went to the freezer pulled out a can of frozen orange juice and tossed it to me, saying.. “If you can read, you can make orange juice”

Having not learned my lesson, another time I wanted to learn how to bake a cake (you know from scratch.. don't even ask me why). So I asked Grandma (you know the one I never remember cooking for me) “Grandma, will you teach me how to bake a cake?” Yep you guessed it, grandma went over to the cupboard pulled out a box of cake mix and tossed it to me.. “If you can read, you can bake a cake”.. what did I learn? Don't ask grandma to teach you to cook and grandma was a great advocate of reading!

My cousin Linda Comstock made this!
The second most amazing woman and in my honest opinion the smartest woman I ever met.. and probably smarter than most I haven't. Was my Aunt Jean. Yep Grandma's oldest daughter.. born on the same day. She had a hard life and made some harder choices but through it all she was strong.. She was a woman to be admired and she played a huge part in my life!! When I took a friend to California a few years back (9 or 10 now) we spent some time with my aunt and let me tell you Mary will back me up on this. My Aunt Jean did something with her life.. Shoot she did everything!! A fabulous teacher, in her later years she and my uncle Karl, gave up their teaching positions in the American School system (A very well paying school district) and cut their salaries in half, in order to teach in the American Schools. They were actually teaching in Kuwait when Iraq invaded.. Well they were home for a three week vacation when Iraq invaded.. so they remained alive and well, but their things, all gone.. The only piece of jewelry I wear regularly was given to me by my aunt. And I think of her every time I glance at my finger and see it. 
Now Aunt Jean came close to repeating history with the birth of her youngest child. Lizzie was born on Sept 1. We are all convinced that Aunt Jean didn't want to keep the tradition going, so she crossed her legs and refused to push until the clock struck midnight.. either that or going into labor interfered with her birthday party.. no one is quite sure.

Since I am writing this on Sept 1.. Happy Birthday Lizzie 
My cousin Linda Comstock made this!