Mama Diaries

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Poor Pig

We started a new New Years tradition at my pad. It's called beat the pig. You get this peppermint pig, put it in a nice velvet bag, then take a hammer and pulverize it. (First person to crack it gets to make a wish.)

Well, it's been a rough few years here, so we've had some bottled-up angst. My daughter initially cracked the thing. But my son beat it to a pulp. Here's what it looked like after his assault:

I'd have to say, it was strangely satisfying and somewhat therapeutic to do this. So, if you have a rough year, I would highly recommend getting a peppermint pig and smashing it to smithereens. (Doing this on New Years Eve would probably work, too.)  I guarantee you will feel better, and the new year will be off to a good start. 

Before I go, I'd like to let you know that my book, Bubba and Squirt's Big Dig to China is in a cover contest. Thanks to those who voted in round 1. It's now in round 2. If you'd like to vote you can go here. (You don't have to be on Facebook - you can vote anonymously. And if you voted in round 1, you can vote again in round 2.) Thank you!

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Sushi Chef and IWSG

Happy New Year!  I wish all of you a great 2019!

First story:  My son, Bubba, likes to cook. But not just ordinary things. He has a creative flare for the extraordinary.

"Mom, we need to get fish eggs, tuna, seaweed, avocado, and sushi rice," he said.

I knew what that meant. He was going to make sushi.

We got the ingredients and proceeded to create the dish. Except he couldn't find the bamboo sushi roller.

"What are we going to do?" he asked.

"I don't know," I said. "Why don't you consult Dr. Google and find out if there's an alternative you can use."

That's what he did. It turns out, you can use a kitchen towel and wrap it in plastic wrap to do the job. It doesn't work as well, but it still does the trick.

Anyway, ladies and gentleman, here is Bubba's finished concoction:

What do you think?

Second:  It's time for the IWSG post.

The question this month is:  What question do you get as an author that you don't like answering, and which question do you like answering?

I don't like answering the question, "How many books have you sold?"  It makes me feel very insecure. I wish I could say that I've sold thousands of my titles. But I can't. As of right now, I am not a best-selling author. Does that mean I'm not a good writer? Does that mean I'm not good at marketing? I don't know. I hope not.  I wish I could say I've sold a ton of books, because I've sure put a lot of effort into writing and marketing them!

My favorite question:  "What do you like most about writing?"  I like creating. It's fun.  I think most authors can relate. But since I'm a children's writer, the thing I like most is not the actual writing, but going out to see the kids either at libraries or schools. It's so gratifying to know that they've enjoyed my books and that I've inspired them to read and write.

What about you? If you're an author, what are you favorite and least favorite questions?         

Friday, December 21, 2018

Gingerbread House

Every year, my kids and I attempt putting together a gingerbread house. Most of the time, it's a dismal failure, with the roof collapsing and the walls crumbling into a swamp of icing. This year, we tried something different:  a kit with interlocking walls. It's an architectural feature that helps even the worst gingerbread house builders. And guess what? It worked!

Now, I admit, this is not the most amazing gingerbread house ever created. But I think for us, it's pretty darn good!

If you'd like to see a spectacular gingerbread creation, check out this Hogwarts castle, done by true master gingerbread builders!

I'm not sure if I'll be back before the new year, so, I'd like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! 

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Mrs. Forgetful

In the last post, I told you about my husband losing his keys. Turned out he had thrown them in the garbage.

Now let me tell you about me:  Mrs. Forgetful.

Many of you know I'm a professional musician. Right now, I'm in the middle of the big holiday performance season. It's a great time to make some cash, but it's an insane schedule. On weekends, I start playing at 9:00 in the morning, and basically don't get home until 10:00 at night. Non-stop playing, rehearsing, and travelling between gigs. (I don't even have time for a proper meal.)

Needless to say, by the end of these days, I'm absolutely exhausted. This past Sunday, when I got home, I thought I had put my keys in my purse. But the next day, when I went to take my daughter to school, I couldn't find them.

"Anybody seen my keys?" I asked.

"No!" my daughter said. "Come on, we're going to be late!" Since I couldn't find my keys, I took my husband's. We went to school in his car.

When I came back, I searched everywhere. They were nowhere to be found.  I even went through all the garbage. Not fun! Unfortunately, I didn't have a Tile on the key chain (see last post for info on that), so I couldn't locate them with the push of a button. Three hours later, I still hadn't found them. Needless to say,  I was a little bit grouchy and a whole lot worried.  A bad way to start a Monday!

Then I decided to check my purse again. (I had already checked it three other times.) I felt along the inside walls of the purse, and I noticed a lump. I inspected it more closely and discovered a pocket I didn't even know I had inside the purse. And guess what was in there? My keys!

Have you ever done anything like that before? Looked everywhere for something and it was right where it was supposed to be?   

Monday, December 3, 2018

Mister Forgetful and IWSG

I bet you think I'm referring to my son, Bubba when I say "Mister Forgetful." Nope. I'm talking about my husband.

The other day, the man was looking for his keys. "Where did I put them?" he asked as we were trying to get out the door.

I shrugged. "Who knows? Why don't you consult your Tile app."

For those of you who don't know, Tile is a handy dandy device that helps you locate missing objects. You attach the tile chip to the object. Then if you lose the object, you activate the Tile app, and the Tile on the object rings, letting you know where it is.   We all felt that Tile was a necessity for my husband, because he is very forgetful!

So, he consulted the Tile app. And the one on the key rang. Do you know where it was? In the garbage! Yep. My man had thrown it away. Thank God for the Tile, or those things would have been history! 

Now, it's time for the IWSG post of the month.

The question is:  What five writing items are on your desk at any given time?

Well, as I look at the stuff around me, here's what I find:

1. Computer. That's a necessity.

2. A pencil with an eraser.

3. Another eraser, because I erase a lot!

4. A notebook for writing. I write everything by hand before I type it in the computer.

5. A pen. I don't use it much, but it's there. Mostly for marking things in my calendar.

Other things: a computer mouse and pad, four candles (why not? I like them, they look pretty, and they smell good. And if the electricity goes out, I can just light them and continue writing.), and a few books on writing and marketing, which I refer to regularly.

What about you? If you're a writer what's on your desk?

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Musical Blending

I hope all you American friends had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We did. The story today happened during meal preparation. My seventeen-year-old daughter was helping. At one point she was using the kitchen blender. I heard the machine pulse and stop. Pulse and stop. Pulse and stop.

"What are you doing?" I asked. "Things aren't going to get blended properly like that!"

She grinned. "I'm playing 'Jingle Bells' on the blender." She demonstrated again and sang along with it.

Sure enough, it sounded like Jingle Bells.

"Okay," I said. "You're going to have to find something a little slower so the blending goes longer."

"How about 'Silent Night'?"


Before I go, I want to let you know that my publisher is having a special. My book, Bubba and Squirt's Big Dig to China is included.

Check out her website for details:


Thursday, November 15, 2018


My mom and her husband came to visit this past weekend. Since it was raining, we decided to play board games. One of the games was Clue. A game where you have to guess who committed a murder, with what weapon it was committed, and in what room of the mansion it was committed in. It's a game of strategy that involves a process of elimination. The answer is a set of cards that is hidden away in a "confidential" envelope. You all might be familiar with the game.

As we played the game, it seemed that the location was pretty much pinpointed. All of us thought the murder was done in the Billiard room. Well, it turns out that my son, Bubba, was holding out on us.

He accidentally showed my daughter that he was holding the Billiard room card. Even though previously going around the table revealed that nobody had that card.

"Dude!" my daughter exclaimed. "You had it the whole time?"

Bubba laughed. "Yeah. I kind of forgot about it."

"Forgot about it? It's right there in your hand. How could you forget about it?"

"I'm clueless!"

Before I leave, I would like to share my SCBWI Book Stop page for Bubba and Squirt's Big Dig to China. There's a contest to see who can get the most likes and comments. If you feel inspired, please stop by and like or comment on the page. Thanks! Click on this link.