Tag Archives: sisters

I Remember This One As ‘Green Glass Beads’

20 Nov

When I was little (and still today) my parents had the most amazing hoard of books. I remember sitting on the floor, or curled up in a corner of a couch reading stories, admiring illustrations, pouring over poetry. I remember us all piled on my parents’ bed as mom read The Secret Garden, doing all the different voices. Accents included. I remember dad reading My Side Of The Mountain to us, a chapter at a time, at bedtime. To this day those two books are still among my favorites.

I also remember mom reading a poem about green glass beads to my sisters and me. A little while later, I went on a hunt to see if I could find the poem hidden inside one of the many books stashed throughout the house. I finally found it. The drawings and the words once again captivated me.

Now, I’m all grown up (reluctantly), and I still search for this poem. This time, on YouTube.



Is it any wonder I love reading and writing books and poetry?

It was all around me growing up. Some of our favorite books were those thick books of poems by Shel Silverstein. Especially Where The Sidewalk Ends. Then of course there were the many Calvin and Hobbs books which could take up many hours of a rainy afternoon (so many big words to learn!). Even with all the other books surrounding us, we also found time to simply flip through the pages of random tomes from the encyclopedia collection. All sorts of wonderful things to learn in one of those.

I think most of us four girls memorized a certain poem by our mother. The one I am thinking of was published in a little booklet from her college. It’s about 3 men in a tub…in the sea. It always makes me smile and sometimes even giggle.

Perhaps I’ll ask her to let me put it on here. Although, the more I think about it (and I have been thinking about it for several months) the more I would like to have that poem in the fore matter of my book of bathroom poetry.

Something else to ask her about.  🙂 



This Hangnail is Driving Me Crazy!!!

26 Jul

Now that I have that out of the way…


The only writing I accomplished today was adding a few paragraphs to a short story I’m thinking of using for blog posts next week.  I may actually stick with this plan, or I may pound out a several pager that will work even better (the night before VBS starts *eye roll*).  I’m never really sure about these things.


I was wondering why I feel so tired, but then I reviewed today’s events, now it makes sense.

Over the course of the day I’ve had a migraine, gone shopping twice, attended a meeting, read several stories to a niece, visited with two of my sisters, and helped my husband empty and defrost a deep freezer.  No wonder I feel so tired.  Turning in a little early sounds good.


Could the word ‘I’ have possibly been stuck in there a few more times?!?



I (lol) have a question for my beloved, eclectic, followers: if you were to steam punk a top hat, what two things would you consider essential?  Would you perhaps want a pair of goggles, or a small magnifying glass, a pocket watch on a chain, or is there something else which you would consider a steam punk necessity?


On another note…

Who here has read and loved a short children’s book called Sleeping Ugly?


And just for some amazingness:


Some people get all the coordination…   😉


Too Many Ideas For One Mind To Handle

8 Jun

When I was younger I didn’t think I was a creative person. My mom and a sister were the visual artists.

Another sister was the fashionista (She still is. Just got a Mohawk a couple weeks ago. Looks Awesome!).

This first sister was always inventing a code or language, sang all the time, making up her own songs, has a beautiful voice, picked up sign language in a semester…

Mom can write, sing, draw, paint, act, darn near anything creative is covered by this one woman!

Dad can build anything, and fix anything.

My youngest sister could pull a new friend out of thin air. She was also something of a fashion bug. Always managed to look very ‘Now’, even when wearing jeans and an old t-shirt.

Me? Yes, I could sing, dance, and act. But put a pen in my hand and ask me to draw a bunny? Erm…No. Tell you a story? Ok, once upon a time there was a happy Princess, she met a happy Prince. They got married. The End. Happy??? You wanted more than that? Oh. Sorry.

Then I took a class on Essay writing. Full on panic mode! That teacher wanted a couple two page essays a week! But, I got to know her a little. Then a little more. After a couple classes I was teacher’s pet. I learned how to write to my audience. Soooo…yeah. I got an A.

I didn’t start doing any creative writing until I was about 24. My husband was still my boyfriend/fiance, my boss had moved to Florida, hubby’s job had moved to another city, and I was broke and bored. Got a plot idea in my head one day, so I called up Lonnie and told him I didn’t know how to start writing it out. He told me to write a little for the beginning, a little for the middle, and a little for the end. Then go in a fill in the blanks.

So I did.

And it worked.

It still isn’t finished, though. First novels rarely do get finished in a timely manner. While working on that book I got about 10 more plot ideas, and carefully put them into Word documents of their own. They are all crying out to be written and read. Some days it gets rather noise in my head.

Like today. Lonnie came up with another plot idea while in the shower. He gave me a run down of the idea and asked me to type it up. Then I got a little idea to add to a sci-fi I’ve had simmering in my stories folder. Another synopsis caught my eye and needed a little tweaking.

Seriously, if I could afford a couple ghost writers right now…I could keep them busy for a couple years with all these ideas crying out for attention.

Needless to say, I can get a little distracted from the project I am working on.

*        *        *

Do you have a couple ideas percollating on the back burner?

Are they a distraction? Or something of a dangled carrot (as in “Look what you get to work on when you finish your current project!”) ?

My unfinished to do list for My Ignored Hamper and Other Bathroom Poetry

My unfinished to do list for My Ignored Hamper and Other Bathroom Poetry

Uh, When Did Spring Get Here?

31 Mar

So, while I spent two weeks housebound with the flu, spring apparently arrived.  No email, no mailer, not even a Facebook event invite! It just snuck up on me!

So I grabbed a camera and took a stroll around the back yard.

Here are a few of my photos.

The pear tree is starting to bud

The pear tree is starting to bud








The apricot tree is blooming, too!

The apricot tree is blooming, too!








Another shot of the apricot blossoms

Another shot of the apricot blossoms








Now that is a very blue sky

Now that is a very blue sky








When my sisters and I were little, Dad was in the Air Force, and we were stationed in England for a while.  When our television was waiting for input it would turn a deep medium blue. Daddy would point to that screen and say that the sky in Idaho was just that shade of blue in the summer time. We didn’t think it was possible.

When we got back to the states, though, we spent hours on our backs pointing to the sky saying, “It really IS that blue!”

It’s amazing what we remember from childhood.

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I still have a cough, and get tired easily, but for the most part I think this flu has passed.  Now to get gung-ho about getting My Ignored Hamper And Other Bathroom Poetry onto the market. To the to-do list!!!  🙂

 – – – – – – – – – – – – – – -> P.S. <- – – – – – – – – – – – – – – 



My Letter to Winter

26 Jan



Dear Winter,

    While I have enjoyed watching your snow fall, appreciated the beautiful contrast of black trees against fog, and marveled at the river completely freezing over because it had been below zero for several days, I am tired of you.  Tired of having to wear four layers of clothing to walk out to a car.  Tired of frozen pipes.  Tired of the temperature being too cold for me to take walks when I’m feeling…twitchy.

I am ready for Spring.  Bring on the chirping robins, sprouting lettuce, and colorful cardigans.  Picnics in the park seem like a fond memory from decades past, rather than a thing I did several times just a few months ago with friends and family. 

What about Summer?  Flip-flops, tank-tops, shorts, and picking cherries with my mom and sisters.  Ah, and the carnivals and festivals…One of my favorite things to do is attend Weiser, Idaho’s Old Time Fiddler’s Contest.  In actuality, I have only been an observer of one evening of the contest.  But the hubbub surrounding the town is the real fun anyway.  The booths in the two larger parks, the music from the bandstands, the carnival food, oh, and the people watching.  I dearly love to people watch.  (*It’s so much fun to watch reactions to my husband and I holding hands.  He’s 22 years older than me, and I have this terrible affliction of looking almost 10 years younger than I actually am.  Especially when wearing a sun dress and flip-flops.*)

Then there is Fall.  Crisp Apples, falling leaves and sweaters.  The season where boots are a fashion statement, not a necessity.  I love my boots.  Little fawn colored ankle boots with a one-inch heel. Knee-high boots with three-inch heels.  Two pairs of thigh-high platform boots with five-inch heels, in both black and white.

My Dear Winter, while you do have your high points, we have had enough of cold weather illnesses; cutting wood to feed the fireplace, and paying mountains of money on propane to keep the pipes from freezing again.  I think it is about time you moved on and let one of the other seasons have a chance.



Rose D’Andrea


Cupcakes and Babies

12 Jan

It’s official! I have survived my second annual 28th birthday.  The sister just younger than me threw me a party.  It was a sleepover party.  Pizza, tea, and cupcakes; talking, games, and episodes of mutually enjoyed shows.  A nice relaxing night, led to trying to stay awake longer than the little ones so we could have something other than G rated fun.  Didn’t really happen, though.  We watched one episode of Numbers and the latest Dr. Who Christmas Special and we were toast.  By that point it was after two and we kinda gave up and rolled over in our sleeping bags.

I was awakened the next morning by a half naked baby boy bumping into me and laughing his head off because his living room floor was littered with most of his favorite women.  My breakfast was two bowls of chocolaty cereal, followed by scrambled eggs a couple hours later.  Mmm, scrambled eggs.

Not much in the gift department, but I already got what I wanted, thought put into a birthday party.  What I did get was a gift certificate for Amazon and a future lunch out with a friend.  Sweet!

*        *        *

On another subject, due to a build up of circumstances it appears we will have to do a factory reset on my computer.  Add to that the fact that we had to reclaim our wireless after someone in the neighborhood high-jacked it and changed the password.  So, we don’t have wireless, my computer has no antivirus program, and the poor old thing is in dire need of some help.  We’ll get through it, it’ll just take a little time, and some sharing of the computers that are working correctly (and the direct line to the router).

*      *      *

Until next time…

How has the beginning of 2013 been for you so far?

Done much writing, dancing, or laughing?





A Late Night Christmas Post

25 Dec
Holly - No, I Wasn't drunk when I drew it!!!

Holly – No, I Wasn’t drunk when I drew it!!!

Here I sit, on my bed, beneath a blanket, and my brand new Laptop Holder with Advanced Cooling System (thanks Mom and Dad!).  In a few minutes I will have to get up and take another dose of cold medication.

I only managed to get to one family Christmas get-together this year, Christmas Eve evening.  My mother’s side of the family has already been passing this cold around, so those who don’t have it now have at least been exposed to it by someone else.  My father’s side of the family, though, decided to do a morning thing.  I already am not good at mornings, add a cold to that, and the fact that my late grandmother’s husband is very susceptible to lung problems, so we (hubby and I) opted to stay home and work on getting me better.

Christmas with my mother’s family is always an adventure.  Even though there are not a million of us, I suppose at times we can come across as though there are.  We all love to talk, laugh, and sing; and about half of us love to argue (some say debate, but since I hate confrontation, it always comes across as arguing).  After the dinner prayer was said by my father, we all took our turn through the kitchen and loaded our plates.  At that point the sounds in the room were compliments to the cooks, the children arguing over who’s plate belonged to whom, and the usual small noises associated with people eating a large, delicious meal.  Mashed Potatoes and Gravy!!!  Yum!

Fast forward half an hour, and we’re all relaxing in the living room, chatting away.  Someone asks, “when are we going to open the presents?”  One of my brothers-in-law puts on a Santa hat and begins handing out colorful bags and boxes.  Paper, ribbons, and tissue paper are flying through the air.  Half a dozen pocket knives come out of nowhere to aid in the opening of boxes and the release of various toys from their specially designed, impossible to open packaging.  Grandma has people listening intently just in case she should make the slightest noise of a want or need (she has rheumatoid arthritis).  The two little ones are soon in a battle of the wills over a new toy keyboard (the poor things were very overstimulated).

My husband received a DVD of Brave, t-shirts, cookies, goodies, etc.  I was given a new skirt, gloves, a book cozy, and a few other things.  We were both given some movie tickets, and a gift certificate to a restaurant we like.

What really made me happy was the way friends of the family, and fringe relatives were unthinkingly absorbed into our group.  No lengthy introductions, no seating them beside someone they might have something in common with.  We just let them come into our lives, tell them to make themselves comfortable, and treat them as though they’ve always been a part of us.  Having been reminded of the way my family treats guests, it’s little wonder at my having so many ‘sisters’: Young women who have been ‘adopted’ by my bio-sisters and I, and who are now just as important in our lives as each of the original four of us.  There have even been a couple who’s home lives were scrambled enough that they took to calling my parents Mom and Dad.

The importance of family and friends is loud and clear in the Christmas season (and Hanukkah :D).  I hope that you took some time to remind your loved ones how important they are to you.  If not, there’s still a few days before the New Year gets here, and the great Money Machine starts gearing up for St. Valentines day.

A Rollercoaster of a Week

17 Dec

Well, Hello again. 

Have you had the kind of week I just experienced?

On Wednesday afternoon I had just decided that the fever was gone and I could resume my regular activities, when an uncle called to tell me that my last Great-grandparent had peacefully passed away at about 12:30pm.

Then there was that horrible shooting in Connecticut a day later, and a couple other sad things relayed to me by my husband that evening.  Cried myself to sleep.

The next day was a niece’s Princess themed birthday party, which I was very late to, because I had to wait for a migraine to subside before going anywhere near excited toddlers.  It was a good party, though.  She had many friends and relatives attend, and received tons of toys, including a pink Schwinn tricycle, and a Cinderella Pez dispenser.  Kind of a toss up as to which one she liked better, really.  One gives you sugar, the other lets you go fast.  Eh, why not both?

Then Sunday morning, as we were sitting in church, the children were called up to help sing a song.  It was so hard not to cry, for oh, so many reasons.  The service was wonderful, though.

So now, I am in something of a stunned, reflective mood.  Not sure what I’m reflecting on.  Perhaps it’s the fact that at least my Great-grandmother was most way through her 90’s.  That I’m glad she had a good life, full of love and family, a quiet passing, and many people who will remember her fondly.

Maybe it’s the fact that I’m glad I have lots of family.  No, I do not have 12 first cousins and 50 second cousins, but compared to some people, I do have many in my life whom I consider to be family, loved ones, friends who are so close they are treated as brothers, sister, spare fathers and mothers, aunts and uncles.  They do not take away from the love I have for my biological family.  If anything, they help magnify the love I have for everyone who makes my life special.

This Christmas will be difficult in some ways.  This year I have lost a grandmother, and a great-grandmother, the World has spent this last year just getting crazier and crazier,  and we are still not financially stable enough for children.

However, this Christmas will be wonderful in many ways: my nephews are now big enough to open their presents with little to no help; we may all be going through tight financial times, but we will still all get together, giving perhaps a few more gifts that are ‘needed’ rather than just ‘wanted’; the loss of loved ones seems to amplify my awareness of the need to love now, to tell the ones I have that they are special, wanted, and thought of; watching the snow fall outside it’s also crystal clear that I am thankful for a warm house, hot food to eat, and a wonderful husband to curl up with on cold nights.

Perhaps it’s the low blood sugar making me sappy, but when I really think about it, I have much to be thankful for in my life.  I realize that the ‘traditional’ time to be thankful was last month, but it’s so very important to see, and acknowledge what you have now.  If you don’t learn to be comfortable with little, then you will never be content with more, no matter how much ‘more’ you acquire.

*   *   *

I have, unfortunately, done almost no writing this week.

There have been a couple additions to my book ideas folder.  Perhaps an anthology or two, with the help of a few relatives, would be in order.

I have been reading my mother’s romance novel, although admittedly I have been slacking on that project as well.  Not for lack of interest.  Far from it, I can hardly wait to find out who is causing so much trouble and pain, and to see how the main love interests finally get together, and to discover what becomes of all the eligible bachelors who’ve come out of the woodwork.

Perhaps taking my vitamins on a regular basis will help with this lackadaisical feeling.  I should also start taking walks again.  Maybe if I start taking care of myself the way I should some of the fog will lift from my brain, and some of the lead will drop from my…tush.

Doing it will be the only way to find out.  I guess now that I’ve told you it had better start getting done, huh?  Down coat, and ear muffs, here I come!  After I take this multivitamin, that is.

Until Next Time…

So, what has been your overall mood this month, so far?  Have you been looking forward to Christmas?  Or dreading it because of the memories it will dredge up?  A strange mix of the two?

& & &…

What is on your Christmas list?  Example: I would like an Amazon gift card, a Wizard 101 cash card, decaffeinated English Breakfast tea, a small jar of Stevia powder, almonds, pepitas, lots of big hugs, my back popped by my youngest sister, mashed potatoes and gravy, and some help putting together a cover for my book of poetry.

Leibester Award, Part 1

29 Nov

So here are the questions that were asked when this was handed on to me and ten other bloggers.


1. If you could rewrite a “classic” book, which would it be?

Robert Lewis Stephenson’s Kidnapped.  I loved this book when I was a teenager and think it would make a great futuristic sci-fi. 


2. Of all the book-to-movie adaptations you’ve seen, which is the worst?

They took The Dark Is Rising and turned it into The Seeker.  I yelled all the way through that movie.  They changed almost everything about the story.


3. Is there a book you’d like to see as a movie that is not yet a movie (that you know of)?

Agnes and the Hit Man.  That is an awesome book.  The only problem Hollywood would have, I think, would be finding an actress willing to be pleasantly plump for the character of Agnes.


4. Beatrice Potter or Dr. Seuss?

You’re going to make me choose?!  I love them both, but perhaps Dr. Seuss would have to win by a hair, just because I love tongue twisters.


5. How do you choose names for your characters?

I usually just pull random names that were popular about the time my characters were supposed to have been born.  Occasionally I will find a name that means something important to a character’s most obvious trait.


6. What was the worst book you had to read for school?

Hmm, that’s a thinker.  Does my algebra text book count as a book I ‘read’?

If not, then I would have to go with Huckleberry Finn.  Although I would like to give it another go now that I’m older, when I was first introduced to this book the subject matter was a little heavy.


7. Who is your favorite cartoon character?

Buggs Bunny.  He’s always thinking outside the box.


8. Heroes or villains?

Heroes.  Give me a good-guy hunk to swoon over.  Now that I think about it, though, I tend to go for the bad boy heroes, like Riddick and Hans Solo.


9. If you could pick a destination anywhere in the world for a 30 day, total-seclusion writing retreat, where would you go?

McCall, Idaho, a little resort town north of Boise.  Smelling the pine trees, watching the lake, and enjoying the quiet; for me that would be inspiring.


10. What is the current state of the inside of your sock drawer? This is a deep psychological question. Be careful how you answer! (Extra points for anyone who knows what I’m referencing.)

Erm…if you must know, it’s a mess.  My socks hang out in the same drawer as all my other under things, and it’s a tangle of all kinds of female foundation garments that alternately fascinate and baffle the males of our species.  I’ve tried sorting and organizing, but to no avail.

It’s only a matter of time before something clicks and this whole mass of cotton, wire, lycra, rivets, and nylon becomes a sentient Drawer Creature and won’t play nice when I have to find a pair of tights to wear to a wedding.


11. If you had no other options, would you choose Earth-bound immortality or death before your next birthday? This is not a deep psychological question.

Oh, Dude!  If I had to pick, it would have to be immortality; especially since my birthday’s in January.  Actually now would be about the right age to be stuck at: old enough to drive, vote, and drink; with none of the aches and pains of middle age.  Yet.



So now I will have to find 10 bloggers to send this on to.  Rather hard, since we are without internet at my house for a couple of days.  Hopefully it is only a couple days.

ReGi McClain is the lovely person who started me on this road of questions and answers.  You can find her on Twitter @regimcclain  and on her blog at http://regimcclain.wordpress.com/.  She has been a very helpful friend to me on this journey toward becoming a published author.

As soon as I am able to access my lists of wonderful blogs and the names of their authors I will be alerting the world as to my choices.  For now, however, you will simply have to be content with my answers.


This post has been uploaded to my blog from my sister Colleen’s computer.  She’s so nice.)


Until Next Time…

  1. Have you ever done a Leibester Award, thing?
  2. What kind of havoc would arise in your life, right now, if you unexpectedly did not have internet access at your house for two or three days?

November Thankfulness

18 Nov

Tonight I have been thinking of all the little things for which I am thankful.  Do you want to read my list?

Too bad.  Here it is anyway.

My parents: They raised a wonderfully neurotic young woman who can’t seem to go a single day without wondering what would have happened if (insert historically Huge event) had happened slightly differently.  They taught me to love books, singing, my sisters, my country, cars, driving, and target practice.
My sisters: Without them I would not be the fiercely protective person I am today. While I was growing up, if you said anything mean about me, ya I would cry.  If you said anything about my sisters, or worse yet actually pushed one of them around? Duck!

They are now my best friends, my support group, and some of my loudest cheerleaders.

My husband: An amazing man. So glad we got introduced. Yes, he is a couple decades older than me. Don’t let that fool you. He is my rock, my muse, and my constant encourager. I don’t think I would have started writing without his prompting, nudging, nagging, and praise.

My extended family: Wow. They taught me that you don’t have to agree in order to get along (for the most part). We may wander around in our own little worlds for the most part, but when the crap hits the fan they’re your best bet.

My first car: Thank you Daddy, and Aunt Dawn! Aunt Dawn told my father that if we could get the car running, I could have it.  Daddy knew what was wrong with it and sent his daughter off to earn the money to fix it.  I wouldn’t trade that summer of learning for anything.  Those memories of working in the garage are precious.

Back when gas was an inconvenience (not a line item of its self on the budget!) I used to have my sisters pile in the adorable clunker and we would go to the nearest gas station. After exhausting a $20 on gas and junk food we would cruise around the countryside.  Good times.

My first boyfriend: Yes, an odd thing to be thankful for, but hear me out. He taught me that being up on that shining pedestal is a scary place to be. I learned at an early age that you never want to seek a man who will think you’re perfect. You can never truly love someone unless you acknowledge and accept their flaws, as well as their virtues.

Small towns: They are wonderful. If you get one small enough you can walk into the library and check out a book even though you forgot your card. Half the residents know you, the other half know of you, even when you were home-schooled and hadn’t attended a day of school with them.  On summer break the town is small enough you can walk over to the library, the burger joint, and the park. I miss that place.

Amazing authors: Without your books, TV shows, movies and plays to take me to strange and wonderful places I might have turned out to be a very different person. Thank you for writing!

NaNoWriMo: Without the challenge of writing without going back and editing, getting this far in a first draft would have been torture. I have not written nearly as much as I had hoped, but it has been painless. I had thought it was impossible to write without my inner editor demanding that I go back and change things, thus interrupting my creative flow. Now I know that not only can I do it, but I can enjoy doing it.

Well, that’s my short list.

What are you thankful for?  Is there someone in your life who pushes you toward being a better version of yourself?  Was there a strange twist of fate that shaped your future?  Did your second grade teacher illuminate your mind to life’s possibilities?