Archive for the ‘novels’ Category

saturday seven; single mom edition

Saturday, February 22nd, 2014



1. I’m not really a single mom. The hubs is at a nerd convention. He will return shortly.

2. I got glasses! (see pic above) Max and the girl got new glasses too. That means everyone but the animals wear some sort of vision correction in this family.

3. My hair stylist lady moved to Arizona, so I had to go to someone new last week for my annual (cringe) haircut. She was so delightful! Very young, cute and stylish. She was also very interesting even though she didn’t talk much. I’m actually glad she didn’t. First off, she couldn’t wash my hair because she had cut her finger pretty badly on her new shears. Next, when she was blow drying my hair, the end piece flew off the dryer and landed across the room. Finally, she tripped as she was trying to get an item off a cart behind her. I don’t mean to come off as mean. I thought she was a very interesting character that I may want to draw from someday. She was so endearing.

4. For knowledge addicts I recommend Quora.

Sargent Pepper Parker





5. <——This is Pepper. She loves everything and everyone.








6. Except our couch. It was old and ratty anyway.

Story Time:

7. After I clawed my way out of the book depression that Allegiant knocked me into, I moved on to lighter fare in the form of Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead. It was light and airy, and I didn’t really care for the writing style. But I shall stick through the series (since it’s sort of an assignment).

Next I read the Newbery Medal winner from 1994, The Giver by Lois Lowry. It really shouldn’t have taken me this long to read it. I blame the old man on the cover and the short read (204 pages). Anyway, it was a masterfully written utopia/dystopia story that has a very interesting ending.

On deck: The Misremembered Man by Christina McKenna is set in Ireland in the mid-seventies and is about a couple of lonely folk. It sounds like a fun read, right? Well no, maybe not. But do not be deceived, the writing is great, the characters more than interesting. For example, the main male character, Jamie reminds me of a more down-to-earth, lovable Ignatius J. Reilly. Read with me, it’s free in the lending library for Amazon Prime members.

check it

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014



In which your humble blogger sends two beloved dystopian YAs into battle.




oh my goodness

Thursday, February 13th, 2014

…gracious, me oh my. Hello to anyone out there. I figured since it’s been approximately a year and a half since I’ve blogged at writer’s cramp, I’d give a little up-datey-do. **Feeling a little sing-songy today** Please bear with me.

Okay, bear. I will stop.

Although there isn’t much proof, I’ve been a busy lady (girl…chick…wo-man?) and some of what I’ve been up to has been writing. All of it has been non-fiction. sigh. I have not given up on fiction, I simply haven’t had time, or haven’t made time as the case may be. Hub’s lil side business has grown quite a bit and since he still has a full time day job, I have taken on some wicked responsibility at Oomph. Like building our site, becoming AdWords certified, managing AdWords accounts for our clients, and blogging for the Oomph site as well as a little bloggy-blog that helps showcase some of our clients.

Some things have changed. I’m no longer a homeschooler(!), Bird is graduating(!) this year and has been accepted to two fine Universities. Max writes, and writes and writes some more and shares his creations with a fan base of female schoolmates, but not with ME. The girl creates wonderful things out of cardboard and is a super star soccer athlete.

Now that you are up-to-date here is a trio of my current obsessions:

The Divergent Series by Veronica Roth

Hay Day (oy vey!)

Random pic:

I’ll be back. <3


Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

My children have quite the sense of humor

Summer, where oh where did you go? Kay, technically autumn doesn’t begin until September 22, and it’s still in the high 90′s, but school has begun so I declare summer over!

Stuff we did:

Visited Ripley’s–charged through the mirror maze, looked at the wax figures, marveled at all the believe it or not stuff, and made fabulous wax hands.

Hubs’ mom came to visit us for a weekend and the first night we went to a crazy awesome buffet that had little octopi in the salad bar. I’m kicking myself for not getting that pic.

The lot of us visited the Sea Life Aquarium where we snapped that smart pic of the kids shown above.

The boys went to scout camp for a week and LaLa was an only child for a bit. I’m not sure she enjoyed the extra parental attention.

All the kids started Judo, and LaLa started tumbling (the gymnastics sort, not down a hill or anything).


Made new recipes, pics another post, maybeee.

Painted the kitchen

Stuff we did not do:

Wake up before dawn (except for the day the boys left for camp).

Wear “daytime” clothes for more than 6 or 7 hours.

Go outside. It gets so hot here that it’s not healthy to spend much time at all outdoors.

Worry about tardies, DPS (aka demerits), homework…

Ah, summer!

Books we read:

Bird: The Fountainhead, Lord of the Rings parts one and two. Interestingly, The Fountainhead was not required reading. I love that he has smart friends that suggest books, cause if I’d suggested it it would have gone on the “Bird’s banned list” like The Great Gatsby. :(

Max: Leven Thumps and the Gateway to Foo, The Hobbit and I’m sure many others that he didn’t care to mention to me. For example, I found The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Filmmaking in his bed when I was helping him clean his room. He’s a night reader.

LaLa: Wishworks, Inc, The Lemonade Wars, The Case of the Rock ‘N’ Roll Dog, The Wonder Book, Wayside School and probably all of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series multiple times.

Moi: A Song of Ice and Fire books one through four, Bright Young Things and Beautiful Days both by Anna Godbersen (again), Looking for Alaska (again), and The Fault in Our Stars (again). I went on a teensy bit of a John Green tear for a minute there. Ah, nerds.

Hubs audiobooked a couple of books about running. Oh, and he worked full time along with running his side biz so we won’t fault him for not keeping up in the reading department.

So there it is in a nutshell. My goal is to keep up with this little blog in the coming year and get my skillz up so I can write funny again.

No links, you’re welcome.

fifteen for friday 1-20-12

Friday, January 20th, 2012

The single mom for a weekend edition…

1. Yes, just this one little weekend. Hubs is in L.A. at a nerd convention.

2. Have you ever gone into a store, say, like a Target and started looking at the clothes and one top looks very familiar? You look down and realize you are wearing that top right then. Suddenly, you turn red and leave as fast as you can hoping you don’t get stopped for shoplifting. Yeah, me either.

3. Many people believe that there is a great need for a sarcasm font. I nominate MS Comic Sans. Let’s get this thing rolling, folks.

4. Funny break

5. If you decide to do parent taught driver’s education for your child please be aware that you will be asked to raise your right hand and swear that you will be responsible for your child’s driving until they are 18. They snuck this little ritual in on me after Bird did the eye test, took a picture, and I had paid the sixteen dollars. Yes, PTDE is half the cost of traditional driver’s ed, but I’m not sure I can handle the responsibility.

6. Reading time:

7. Texas Gothic by Rosemary Clement-Moore: I will read Rosemary until the day she stops writing. I am proud to say that I have read all of her published books to date. I love her style and how she sucks you right in to her stories as though you’re walking right along with her characters. Amy Goodnight carries a solid Texas name but her branch of the family turns out to be quite a bit less than traditional. And, omk, love interest Ben is swoon-worthy.

8. Connected by Jolyn Palliata: Jolyn is one of my writer friends from wayyyyy back to 2009. I know, forever, right? Anyway, she is really getting her stuff out there. Connected is a novella about two souls, one with a living body and one without which are by some twist of fate, interconnected. Rhys’ (my fave male name ever, btw) conscious is stuck inside Addison and at first it is a very uncomfortable situation. Fast, and fun Jolyn will pull you in to their story and won’t let you go even after the twisty ending. Disclaimer: This is not, I repeat NOT for a young adult audience.

9. Next I’m reading Amber Eyes by Jolyn as well. I read this a few years ago when it was in it’s primitive form and loved it, loved it, loved it then. Jolyn has edited it and sent it out into the world. Check it out. And last time I read it, it was for young adults.

10: For writers:

11. Check WeBook out and tell me what you think. I think it’s a very clever idea. I wonder if it will be successful in finding agents, etc.

12. Randomness:

13. So it’s mid January and the high today should be 77 degrees. I really love Texas in the winter.

14. The Sims 3 is coming out with a new expansion pack and Katy Perry is in on it.

15. Check ya later!

the fault in our stars

Wednesday, January 11th, 2012

I’ve read John Green before. Heck, I’m even a nerdfighter. Please, look that up. I’ll wait if you promise to come back. Unfortunately, I haven’t read his award winning Looking for Alaska, although I plan to do so soon. See my itsy-bitsy reviews of the ones I have read here and here.

Now, with that out of the way, I have to say that The Fault is one of the best realistic books I have ever read. I normally don’t pick up books that I can tell from the review are going to make me cry like a heartbroken baby with teething issues, but I couldn’t pass this one up. From Amazon:

“Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel’s story is about to be completely rewritten.

Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning author John Green’s most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.”

Mostly though, I was on a mini-hot-streak of yearning for really good YA. Serendipitously, Kindle on my phone popped Mr. Green’s brand spanking new offering right in front of my greedy eyes. I saw the name, read the tag line and purchased it. I read it straight through because I Could Not Put It Down. Luckily, hubs was fast asleep by the time I couldn’t hold the waterworks back any longer.

Even if you HATE crying, especially in front of family members, read this book. I’m going to yell now, so cover your ears. READ THIS BOOK! Intertwined with the sadness is John’s signature humor, his insanely marvelous mental capabilities and his genius for writing scenes and dialogue that feel really real…even if you don’t happen to talk that way.

Bravo, John Green, bravo.

P.S.- It’s not sappy, I promise.

fifteen for friday 8/5/2011

Friday, August 5th, 2011

1. This is for you sis! Sorry it’s so late in the day.

2. I love that I got to spend two hours in the kitchen making dinner. No rushing, no Hamburger-Helper-tossed-together meal. It’s nice to finally spend family time and relax.

3. 17 days till school starts!

4. Yeah, we went there. The egg didn’t so much fry as dry out.

5. My son’s decor. I don’t think we need an intervention…yet.

6. Pete sometimes gives great advice, but other times he’s really off his game. (Every family should have a white board in the kitchen!)

7. Took four kids on a four hour errand trip today. So many tantrums, I had to apologize and ply them with Popsicles before they would forgive me.

8. So excited to get back to crocheting and the blanket I started over two years ago.

9. It’s hot.

10. We’re having a garage sale next week, so everyone show up and buy all my used stuff, k? K.

11. Haven’t seen Harry Potter yet. So sad.

12. There’s a new Sarah Dessen out! It’s called What Happened to Goodbye and I can’t wait to crack it open and visit adolescence once again.

13. Best website this week is Passive Agressive

14. I forgot to do 14.

15. Old school Doritos…nom nom nom.

tap tap tap

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011

Is this thing on? Who knows if anyone will read this now that I’ve been gone from blogland for almost a full year. I tried my hand at the retail world for said year and have returned with many more bumps, bruises, tales and even muscles. Even as a part-timer that world took it’s toll and left me with very little down time (after caring for my family, of course). And unfortunately blogging, and even more sadly, writing were placed on the back burner which never got around to being turned on.

Enough with the woe is me! Time to regain the writing skills that I’m sure I’ve lost over the hiatus… And I’m so looking forward to it!


One thing I almost always have time for is reading. And I’ve done a bit of that in the last year. I finally got a smartphone.  And with it, the Kindle app, which I adore and have used more than any other feature. All this is leading up to what I read on my blog-cation. The Kindle has all kinds of free classics and I chose to read all of Jane Austen’s works. I positively lurvve historical fiction so it was a real treat to read fiction from history. On the not-so-free end of things I read The Help, Water for Elephants and In Zanesville. On the paper front, Eragon. All are worthy reads, but Austen and Kathryn Stockett’s The Help were definite faves.

Please leave a comment and let me know you’re here!

fifteen for friday 08/27/10

Friday, August 27th, 2010

…the return. Remember these are random thoughts, k?

1. You think your commute is bad? Feel better? Glad I could help.

2. Looking over old drafts can be disheartening. See the purple marker? It’s purple for a reason.

old manu 0013. Purple prose –noun

writing that calls attention to itself because of its obvious use of certain effects, as exaggerated sentiment or pathos, esp. in an attempt to enlist or manipulate the reader’s sympathies. (

4. So I’m reading The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan right now. It’s the second book in The Wheel of Time series. It’s a fantasy book. Yeah, I lost like 15 cool points just writing that. I think I may be getting dangerously close to negative cool territory.
6. (WARNING: shameless plug) Into android applications (the phones not the robots)? Want to know more? Check out this site.
elf defense 0037. You never know where or when you may come in contact with a rogue elf. It’s best to be prepared.
8. I wonder if they have real elves to practice on?
9. Are children the only ones who take this class? It doesn’t seem fair to have a full grown human fighting against a little elf.

10. I wonder how Santa feels about this?
11. OMK, every time! I get to this point and I just wonder…do I seriously not have 15 random thoughts in my head?
12. Is it okay to have 90 unopened email in my inbox? Looking for validation.
13. There should be a term for the great fatigue felt in the first week or two of school. Back-to-school lag? Sudden routine syndrome? That one sounds good!
14. I once had a guest blogger on here, Jenny Martin, librarian. Well, guess what? She got herself an agent! Way to go Jenny!
15. I think I might look into this wattpad thing. Not sure about it yet, though.
See ya next week!

our summer vacation

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

…was a new air conditioner!!!

My niece made this!

My niece made this!

My 13 year-old niece R.A. came to visit us for a week and left a bunch of awesome artwork. She did this free-mouse in PAINT! No really, we watched her. Amazing!

I’ve started a new job. It makes for interesting people watching, interacting, etc. People are strange, btw.

We swam at the Y a bunch, with our friends a little and visited the library not nearly enough.

173px-TheFountainheadMy big summer read was The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand (after I finished Lonesome Dove for the second time), not really what you would call a beach read, but satisfying nonetheless. And I wasn’t on any beaches anyway. So, The Fountainhead. What do I say? It was interesting to say the least. But what I can’t say is that I’ve ever met anyone like the people found in its pages. But I’ve also never lived in 1930′s New York either. It is hard for me to believe that there was seemingly no positive growth in any of the characters, save one. The others who “learned” from their mistakes took the lessons and twisted them into unhappiness for themselves and others. The one character who never changes, always stays the same (supposedly stands by his principles) is our protagonist and winner in the end, the person we should admire and try to be more like.

The writing was phenomenal. I can definitely see why this is a classic. The story is good. The characters are as believable as caricatures…reminding me of the people minded animals of Animal Farm. I’m certainly no expert. Just calling it as I see it.

Now that the kids are back at school I hope to have more time to WRITE!!!! Here as well as the many many unfinished projects floating on notebook paper, in word docs and in my gray matter.