May 272016

Everyone has a story. Everyone has something good happen … and everyone has something bad happen. But I’ve known people who have everything – and they’re always complaining. I had a friend who was dying, and she never complained. Not once. Instead, she seemed to cherish every moment she had left.

Rose the Beagle

Rose the beagle

I’m not a saint. I complain. I judge. And then I catch myself and try not to complain or judge. It seems to me our reactions – what we dwell on – makes us either sad and angry or happy and looking forward to the next step in our lives. Through the years, my husband and I have had four dogs and one cat. Our dogs especially were spoiled. They loved eating, they loved us, they loved chasing balls, they loved naps. (Apologies to any men reading this, but doesn’t that sound like someone’s husband?)

If someone passed our yard, the dogs barked. Very territorial. (Like some men again, though all our dogs were females, and so is our cat.)

Sky, our English setter, field type

Sky, our English setter, field type

All our dogs were hunting dogs: two English springer spaniels, one English setter, and one beagle. They shared a lot of qualities: energetic, affectionate, loud, hating baths – every single one – and were often a source of laughter and joy.

Cats are different creatures. Our last two dogs passed a year and a half ago, a few months apart. At first, we were too sad to adopt another dog. We were grieving. Since we might move to another state next spring, we decided to wait until after we move before adopting again. We already had our cat, so we weren’t without a fur baby.

Belle is our first cat, and she has a lot of typical cat behaviors. She sometimes will come when we call her but only when she wants to come. I think she’s showing us that she’s the boss, not us. And she gets bored easily. Almost up to the end of their lives, our dogs were eager to chase a ball. That never got old. Not so for our cat. Cat toys lose their entertainment value quickly for her.

Belle is older now, but she's not much bigger.

Belle is older now, but she’s not much bigger.

Still, she can be very loving (when she wants). She does that kneading/massaging thing on my thigh. And she purrs. Her purrs make me happy. Other times, she pushes the top of her head into my palm, letting me know that she wants me to pet her. Because she’s so picky, if she shows the smallest sign that she wants some loving from me, I feel privileged and I love her more for it.

People are more like cats that way, though if my quest is for happiness, I should want to be a dog. Wanting to play. Wanting to run and cuddle and lick and sniff. Wanting total happiness, no matter how dopey I look. Yet a part of me still wants to be a cool and sometimes standoffish (but perfectly groomed) cat. On the other hand, I know the dogs are happier.

I guess this indecision shows my humanity. I want it all, and we humans complicate everything.

What about you? What animal would you prefer to be? 

Teaser Tuesday & Gift Card Giveaway!

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Jun 182013

I posted my second Tuesday Teaser of HEARTS IN HEAVEN on my Facebook page. This one if from a cat’s point of view. And I’ve been getting great reviews for MO’S HEART from the Tasty Book Tour. Today’s reviewer called it “Absolutely charming.” She compared it to Robyn Carr’s Virgin River books. Of course, I’m honored by that. A MIRACLE PIE reviewer said that, too, and added Susan Wiggs and Kristan Higgins. I love that reviewer! lol

I’m giving away five Digital Copies of MIRACLE PIE and $20.00 Amazon Gift Card for the Tasty Book Tour. Because I’m so technically inept, I’m sending you here to enter.
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So, how is your Tuesday going?

Jul 092012

While being being chained to the keyboard for about 12 hours a day, starting in March (hubby will tell you that’s only a slight exaggeration), I published a novella and a book from my new Miracle Interrupted series, with a new novella and my first print book on the way. While I’m waiting for the edits for MIRACLE LANE (the third Miracle Interrupted story), I’m doing odds and ends. I’ve read a few books and shopped for household items. (Hubby might be re-thinking his wish to drag me away from the computer.) We’ve gone to movies and out to eat. We’re expecting my sister and brother-in-law next week. They’ll be staying for 8 days, so cleaning is on my to-do list. 🙁 While they’re visiting, we’re having a big family get-together at our house.

But writing is my joy. I’ve loosely plotted two new books for my Miracle Interrupted series, and I already love the characters. For the next book, I’ve gotten technical advice from the fabulous Gina Black and the incredible Sheila Clover English (from Circle of Seven Productions). I probably won’t start this book for a couple of weeks, but I’m so eager. I’ve already written some of the dialogue for the first book and the beginning for the following book. I know what (and who) the main characters look like.

Meanwhile, I’ve decided to stop neglecting my blog. My critique partner and good friend Liz Kreger (my road trip buddy!), writes her blog three times a week, even though she works full time, has a social life and a family that includes a young daughter. Plus she’s been fighting the Big C for years. Oh yeah, and she writes. Beautifully.

If she can do all that, I should be able to keep a blog schedule. I’m going to shoot for 3 days a week. Like Liz (my role model), I’ll blog Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Liz has a plan for hers, but she’s much more organized than I am. (When we share a room on our road trips and I can’t remember where I put something, she’ll often know where it is. Not like my husband, who’s as messy as I am.)

So, here’s my plan. Some days I might just do outtakes or teasers from my books. (I can do that!) Other days, if I have nothing else, I might post a cartoon or a video – and I promise they won’t all be cat videos. In fact, here’s a funny video I discovered while researching my next book. It’s only one minute thirty-two seconds. It’s called Cooking with Ginger – Golden Retriever bakes a cake. (And, yes, this was real research. I suffer for my books.)

So, that’s my summer: past, present and future. How is your summer going?

Nov 112011

This is what I listened to this morning. I picked up my cat and danced with her – for about 30 seconds. Then she jumped off and I danced alone while she rubbed her body on the carpet. We both enjoyed ourselves.

The second revision of my Galaxy Girls novella is done. I deleted one scene and added two. It’s about 1500 words longer than my first revision. I’m reading a hard copy today. When I’m done, I’ll send it to a beta reader. Altogether, I’m feeling good this Friday morning. How are you feeling?