Monday, May 25, 2009

Some Gave All


With a nephew serving in Iraq this summer, and our veterans marching in parades, I wanted to take a moment to remind everyone that this day is about more than picnics and cookouts. It's a day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Some say Memorial Day began in Kingston, GA for both the Confederate and Union soldiers while the South was still occupied by Sherman's army. New York State was the first to officially recognize the holiday in 1873; by 1890 all northern states recognized the day. Many southern states refused to acknowledge the holiday and kept their own day to recognize their Confederate dead. Things began to change after WWI when the holiday--then called Decoration Day--expanded to include the dead from the Spanish-American War and WWI.

In 1971, Memorial Day was moved to the last Monday in May to give Federal employees a three-day weekend.

I hope you'll pause in whatever you're doing at 3 p.m. today for our National moment of remembrance and think about what this day really means.


Friday, May 8, 2009

A Little Ray of Much-Needed Sunshine



It's been one of those roller coaster weeks. First, we lost my husband's uncle unexpectedly. I've loved this man as if he were my own uncle from the first time I met him. My husband was very close to his uncle and cousins so we spent a lot of time with them, especially when we were first dating. In many ways, I was more comfortable with Uncle Jimmy and his wife than with my own in-laws. It's hard to see those you love suffering, and hard to be strong for them when you'd really like to find a corner and cry your heart out yourself.

Then, just as we were starting to wrap our minds around the fact that Uncle Jimmy is gone, my dad (who suffers, as some of you know, from senile dementia) wound up in the hospital after a fall. Right now it's not clear if he'll be able to come home or when. Until his mobility improves, my mother can't care for him, so he remains in the hospital, possibly heading to a nursing home for short term care --or longer(which none of us wants to see happen) and we remain on that roller coaster of ups and downs.

So when I found this in my inbox this morning it was a nice ray of sunshine in what's been a week of dark skies and rain (both literally and figuratively, LOL).

A four star review from The Romance Studio:

The Model Man
Nicole McCaffrey
Contemporary romance
Available from The Wild Rose Press
ISBN: 1-60154-237-2
March 2008

Single mom Kelly Michaels is a popular romance author whose children always come first. She didn't want to attend the writers' convention but lets herself be convinced to go. She definitely doesn't want to have a liaison with a playboy cover hunk who is fifteen years her junior.

Derek Calavicci is used to women throwing themselves at him. But the author of the novels he poses for isn't interested in a fling. He has a chance to convince her he won't tire of her when they are compromised by the paparazzi and to save their reputations they pretend to be a lovestruck couple.

This is an extremely enjoyable, fun romance. The characters are fabulous and everyone interacts naturally. Derek and Kelly are filled with realistic qualities, but I wish I could have seen more of his feelings involving 9-11. I loved all of the wonderful secondary characters; I want a best friend just like Sharon! I was entertained by every aspect of this story; the chemistry between this couple is hot. Their growing relationship kept me spellbound and I'm a sucker for a well-written older woman/younger man romance. The settings were perfect, the plot flowed so well that I didn't put the book down until the last page and was, in fact, sad when it was over.

Overall rating: Four hearts
Sensuality rating: Very sensual

Reviewer: Theresa Joseph
May 6, 2009

I don't know who Theresa Joseph is, but she sure made my morning!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Mental Health Day -- or Back in the Saddle?


Dilemmas, dilemmas!

It's been a brutal week at the day job--and that includes the mom job. It seems whenever we get to these final weeks of the school year, the whininess kicks in. And my kids have been whining, too! *G*

It's light until well after 8 p.m., so they don't want to get ready for bed and end up getting there later than they should. Then in the morning they're tired and don't want to get moving. Which makes for some very stressful mornings--and this will undoubtedly continue until school lets out for summer break in mid June.

Since it's been a busy, stress-filled week, I find myself in a quandry this morning. Mental Health Day? I sure could use one. Or do I jump back in the saddle to do some writing, which I haven't had time for all week.

If I take the mental health day and read or do something relaxing, I'll probably be calmer and in a better frame of mind by the time my Kindergartner gets off the bus in a couple of hours. In truth though, I probalby won't be able to relax--the house is showing signs of neglect from my busy week and I'll probably end up cleaning. And what self-respecting writer actually has a clean house?

If I choose to write then I have to decide which of my characters I want to spend the day with.

Hmmm...

Which of these two options will feed my soul and bring me inner peace?

Rats, I knew you'd say that! Now I'm off to listen to the voices in my head and see who is calling the loudest...

Wish me luck!

How are you spending this sunny spring Friday?