Girls Write Out
Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Hey, I'm getting new author photos taken this weekend with a fabulous photographer nearby. Should I dress professional? Or like me? Any ideas on colors? Should I straighten my hair or leave it curly. Any and all ideas considered. Be my stylist.

Oh my gosh, I got these FABULOUS Donald Pliners that match my navy purse and jeans. That's definitely a consideration. The man is a shoe god.
Kristin  
posted at 2:14 PM  
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Well, it's a New Year and you know what that means...lots of stupid laws to take effect in California, land of the plastic, home of the well-meaning. The truth is, I only know of one law taking effect January 1st, and that's no texting while driving.

Maybe I'm slow. I was educated in the California public school system, "Like" is a regular part of my vocabulary, and I identify with Bridget Jones and Becky Sharp as heroines. However, it's already a law in CA that you must be "hands-free" while driving, ie., you can't have your phone in your hand. Now, I don't know about you, but a NEW law adding that you can't text seems...I don't know...unnecessary?

So, let's see, we can still afford eggs because the chicken hokey pokey (they have to be able to turn themselves about) law doesn't take effect yet. You know, I buy organic eggs, so this is no skin off my nose, but do all the poor people know that these free-wheeling chickens don't come cheap? Just asking.

It's now illegal to forge a "clean air act" bumper sticker for your Prius -- hence making the old Prius, with the sticker that lets you drive in the commuter lane, more valuable. I think it's sort of funny the idea that a do-gooder, driving a Prius, would cheat on the sticker. But also that a bumper sticker might prove more valuable than the actual vehicle. I can pass you in my SUV with all my offspring in because I'm so eligible! ACK!

Smart car drivers can now use the commuter lane. Which is good because then they can pass everyone and give us all a good laugh -- sort of like a parade! (They're like motorcycles with a roof, only way less cool.)

Finally, if you're selling your car on the street (like they do by Stanford University on the El Camino Real) the police can impound your vehicle because you are NOT a licensed dealer. Bad, bad private seller!

Go ahead. Laugh at our stupidity, but be warned. Californians can't afford California anymore, and we're bringing our idiocy to a state near you!

And seriously? The Smart Car should come with a warning. It is seriously emasculating. I'm not a Harley girl, but if given a choice between a guy on a bike and one of these...well, you be the judge.

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Kristin  
posted at 1:39 AM  
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Monday, December 29, 2008

A NEW YEAR
Tomorrow is New Year's Eve so I've started thinking about the past and the future. Where did 2008 go? I blinked and here comes 2009! Do you remember how everyone feared life as we know it would be over in 2000 with the Y2K debacle? Another year and a DECADE will have passed from that point. I'll be 57 in three weeks but I'm still only 19 in my head. My body is quick to inform me that I'm delusional about that though. LOL

Here are the top things I've learned this year.

FIRST THE BAD:
I can't crawl on the floor anymore. I get a shooting nerve pain in my left knee.
"The girls" need more support and that support isn't very comfortable.
Age spots are hard to get rid of. Any ideas?
The mind is a terrible thing to lose. If you spot mine hiding under the sofa, let me know!
DHEA can make hair grow on the face.

AND THE GOOD:
Being a grammy is the best thing that's ever happened to me. It's worth the age spots!
Migraines ARE curable with bioidentical hormones. Check out my story here.
Marriage gets better and better the longer you're married to the one you love. Especially now that he's learned I love jewelry!
There's no joy like seeing your kids happy.
A new hairstyle can take off ten years.
A MacBook can take out all the aggravation of dealing with computers.
You CAN have cyberfriends like you who bless our lives!

How about you? Want to share something you've learned this past year?
Colleen Coble  
posted at 6:16 PM  
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Sunday, December 28, 2008

Having become such a picky reader, this year I went on a search for new authors. So as 2008 ticks off its last hours, I'm sharing favorite new books/authors I discovered this year, in no particular order. These are not new authors by any means, just new to me.

I hope you'll share yours too, as I'm always on the lookout for the next great read. :-)

SAY WHEN by Elizabeth Berg

TWILIGHT By Stephenie Meyer

LOVE BEGINS WITH ELLE by Rachel Hauck

THE SECRET LIFE OF CEE CEE WILKES by Diane Chamberlin

HEALING STONES by Nancy Rue and Stephen Arterburn

SWEET CAROLINE by Rachel Hauck

THE BAY AT MIDNIGHT by Diane Chamberlin

THE SHAPE OF MERCY by Susan Meissner
Denise Hunter  
posted at 8:33 PM  
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Thursday, December 25, 2008
Merry Christmas from the Girls Write Out Girls!

Diann is at a lovely, homey hotel celebrating with family. Colleen is taking pictures of that beautiful new grandbaby with her first doll, Denise is probably cleaning up after a perfect holiday morning and I'm battling with my kids to try to get on the Wii Fit. (A present from my Mom.)

We've had a wonderful day and I hope you have too. My family is sitting here playing Monopoly and watching "Star Trek". Blasphemy, I say as it's 24 Hours of "A Christmas Story" time.

Dh and son tried to go skiing, but the route to Tahoe is closed, so he's stuck here. He even went the back way and couldn't get through. Doubt isn't playing up here yet, so I'm here basting the turkey at my mom's and hoping for snow tonight. I hope you're somewhere warm with people you love. Thanks for sticking with us girls through the years!
Kristin
& Diann & Colleen & Denise
Kristin  
posted at 2:51 PM  
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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Are you caught up in the Christmas frenzy yet? Baking, parties, shopping, musicals . . . . makes me tired just typing about it.

BUT you know how I love Christmas! There is something delightfully magical about the season. Trees and housetops sparkling white from a new-fallen snow, people bundled in warm woolen mittens and scarves, carrying packages, laughing together.

Did you just hear the sound of a needle scratch across an old LP record (for those of you who are old enough to remember)?

Okay, so people aren't laughing together. In fact, they're not laughing at all. They're shoving each other away from the store registers. Babies are cranky, Moms are cranky. With empty pockets, Dads are tired and sitting on benches in the middle of the mall. Grandmas sit on the same benches with a silent plea for the rapture.

I see their pain but for the life of me, it doesn't register. With a kick in my boots, I walk happily past them and wave while Kenny G and Amy Grant croon Christmas songs from  my iPod. 

The bench people want to hurt me.

Even in the hustle-bustle of it all, I'm thankful for the birth of our Savior and the joy this season brings. Nothing can deter me. I saw an awesome quote the other day, "Look for the hidden gifts in every moment."  Isn't that cool? Sometimes we have to dig a little harder, but it's there. 

How about you? How's your Christmas season so far?


Diann Hunt  
posted at 8:40 AM  
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Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Heroic...??

Last week on "The Biggest Loser", Heba said that her husband didn't mind giving her the chance to compete in the finals. Vote for her. Naturally, not many did. She lost 16% to her husband's 84%.

I admire anyone who can work that hard to change their lives. Seriously, all of those people on that show amazed me. It was just the weight loss, it was that they looked HEALTHY. They beamed. And I think it was because they overcame all the lies they have heard about themselves to blossom into who they really are. That is beautiful.

Last night, I heard Heba's truth. She had brought them both to the show so that they could have a chance for a healthy pregnancy. That is beautiful. I can identify with that. I would have voted for that. Throwing her husband under the bus so she can compete? Not so much.

It got me to thinking about writing and characters. No one is going to identify with someone who will sacrifice another for their own good. It's emotionally impossible -- because it's ungodly, unloving and downright rude. Great characters sacrifice themselves for the good of another. But why? Why does revenge feel so good in a novel? I mean, it's supposed to be the Lord's, we know that...and yet revenge can be a little heroic. Who does not cheer when Dantes takes Danglars down in the "Count of Monte Cristo"?

When "Tess" (of the D'urbervilles) takes a knife to the man who raped her, you have to admit, there's a little pleasure in that, and wow, does that make you feel wrong. LOL But after you've watched her bury her baby outside the church cemetery (they wouldn't let her bury a "bastard" there.) Hardy ups the stakes until YOU want to kill the man.

Tess is very anti-God when her rapist comes to tell her of his conversion, and his "ministry" and Tess responds, "I can't believe in such sudden things! I feel indignant with you for talking to me like this, when you know--when you know what harm you've done me! You, and those like you, take your fill of pleasure on the earth by making the life of such as me bitter and black with sorrow; and then it is a fine thing, when you have had enough of that, to think of securing your pleasure in heaven by becoming converted!"

His answer a few lines later, "Well," he declared, a resentment beneath his words seeming ready to spring out at a moment's notice, "God forbid that I should say I am a good man -- and you know I don't say such a thing. I am new to goodness, trutly, but new comers see furthest sometimes."

Okay, if you don't want to hurt him yet, you are far less human than me. Why does it feel so good to watch pride fall? When we have enough of it ourselves?

So you think he's come back to apologize, make things right when he meets her a few days later. "Tess -- don't look at me so -- I cannot stand your looks! There were never such eyes, surely, before Christianity or since!. I won't lose my head; I dare not. I own that the sight of you has waked up my love for you, which, I believed, was extinguished with all such feelings. But I thought that our marriage might be a sanctification for us both, 'The unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband.' I said to myself."

So what is it about revenge that feels satisfying?
Kristin  
posted at 11:04 AM  
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Tuesday, December 16, 2008
BIGGEST LOSER: SPOILER ALERT
Don't read any more if you haven't watched it, but whoohooo! It was a great show tonight. All the contestants looked amazing, and my girl Michelle was stunning. I jumped up and ran around the living room when she won. Whoohoo! She so deserved it!!!!
Colleen Coble  
posted at 9:56 PM  
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IPHONE OWNER AT LAST
I admit it. I coveted. I've been watching the iPhones for two years and wanting one in the worst way. We didn't have AT&T service in our town though. I was in Hawaii when the word came that they were buying my cell service, Centennial. I let out a whoop that made everyone laugh. But I still thought I had to wait until the purchase was complete, sometime next year, but after talking to a Centennial salesman, I found out I could go ahead and get one. Just to make sure, I called AT&T and sure enough!

So now I'm the proud owner of a white iPhone. This thing ROCKS! Right now I'm working on putting in photos for family and friends with their numbers. It syncs with my MacBook and I have all my calendar right there as well as phone numbers and addresses. I downloaded some programs that do cool things like tell me where to find restaurants. One I particularly like tells me the nutrition info on all the fast food places you can imagine. It's very slick and I figured it out right from the moment it was in my hand. I can update Twitter, check my email and look up a research book on Amazon, all while traveling. Very cool!

So if you see a glow from Indiana, it's me smiling!

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Colleen Coble  
posted at 10:10 AM  
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Sunday, December 14, 2008

We were at Kevin's work Christmas party when the subject of football came up at our table. A lively discussion ensued.


"Remember in the AFC playoffs when Bettis fumbled the ball and Harper recovered it?" Kevin asks.


"Oh, yeah, that was great!"



"Remember when the Colts intercepted Brady's pass in the AFC Championship game and put the game away?"


Suddenly the men are recalling incredible interceptions, game winning drives, and underdog wins.


I watch as the comments fly around the table, a little in awe, a little embarrassed, because though I watched many of these games, I don't remember a single play. Not. A single. Play.


More embarrassing. I have actually been at some of these games, sitting on the hard bleacher seats, drink in one hand, nachos in the other, and I couldn't even tell you who we played. I did watch the games, I really did. I don't know why these things don't stick in my head, but they don't. I'm beginning to think men have a memory gene I'm missing.


Ask me what my sister about Florida last summer. Ask me what Joe's dog's name is in "You've Got mail". Ask me what Kevin got me for our tenth anniversary. But please, don't ask me anything about any game ever. I won't know the answer.

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Denise Hunter  
posted at 7:47 PM  
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Thursday, December 11, 2008

I just had to share my latest knitting project. I couldn't find my camera and my daughter had to tell me how to take the picture with my computer. The water bottle was the nearest thing I had to a head form. Should have gotten a picture with a grandkid wearing it. Sigh.

I actually tell you more than a lot of my friends here even know. For instance, I hadn't told anyone at my church that I was knitting. So imagine their surprise on Wednesday night at choir practice when I pulled this cap out of my bag and boasted that I had made it. Instead of cheers of encouragement, this is what I got:

"Let me see that." At which time, said "friend" turned the cap inside out and told me she was checking for a Wal-mart tag! Can you imagine? I'll bet she's one of those who checks the backs of cards for Hallmark too.

Then I showed it to someone else and that person said, "What is it?"

WHAT IS IT??????  It's a hat, for crying out loud!!  You know, those warm things you put on your head in the biting chill of winter? Any of this ringing a bell???????

Okay, okay, they really are good friends and we had a good laugh together. And to be honest, I'm not deterred in the least.

Oh, one more thing! I was at the Christmas open house at the yarn shop and can you believe I won a Mary Engelbreicht knitting bag!!!  Whoohooo!!!  Just feeds my new addiction. 

(Waving at fellow-knitter/blog reader, Christy!)

Just had to share. Aren't you glad? 
Diann Hunt  
posted at 8:15 PM  
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Wednesday, December 10, 2008
AFTER:


Here I am. I feel about ten pounds lighter. This is all haircut, no product too, isn't that cool?
Kristin  
posted at 6:03 PM  
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Speaking of not fitting in (as we were the other day), I came to my coffee shop to write today. I kid you not, this woman in a minivan practically ran me down rather than wait for me to cross the street. Then, not five feet in front of me, she stopped so she wouldn't hit a crow. A crow!! Like the devil bird in the Hitchcock film!!! What is wrong with people?

Yesterday, in Los Gatos (ritzy, fancy town where people have designer dogs and togs), I saw a man take his daughter to coffee, and he was the second guy I saw with a man purse. There is no justifying the man purse -- and you know me, I'm a handbag chick!

I had dinner last night in my Chinese mall, where there is no English. I love that. You have to guess what you're eating and the Chinese do some nasty stuff with fish. Just saying. A fried fish in full fish form is NOT appetizing.

So it's not that I mind being out of my element, I mind being out of control. I had my car, knew where I was, etc., etc. It's the out of control thing I don't like. Not knowing where the coffee is, how I'm going to get somewhere, etc., etc. Okay. Back to work.
Kristin  
posted at 12:39 PM  
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Tuesday, December 09, 2008
BIGGEST LOSER
I just finished watching the Biggest Loser. I voted for Ed to come on the show instead of Heba. So did Dave. She is just soooo selfish. Ed doesn't have the gumption to win so I want to maximize Michelle's chances. She's the best of the four. I just loved her and her mother.

I was sooo hoping Vicky wouldn't make it this far. All the game playing on the blue team about made me sick. I hope they don't get any of those calculating types next year or I'm not tuning in!
Colleen Coble  
posted at 10:08 PM  
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It's a blessing...and a curse...

One of my family's favorite shows is "Monk", the OCD detective and he always says his gift is a "blessing and a curse". When doing the research for "Split Ends", I found out that really good hair designers cost a lot of money. The good was, of course, I had fabulous hair. Researching good hair gave me the blessing of knowing what makes a good stylist. The curse part was that I got addicted to good hair and I can't afford it. Not with four kids, the junior high school trip to Yosemite ($625!) Hello??? I'll be danged if I'd pay $625 to camp, but that's me. At least it's not me, that's the good part. I just have to pay for it, that's the curse part.

Anyhoo, I started doing my own hair. It started because the last stylist thinned my hair -- that never works. It didn't. So since about July, I have been cursed with bad hair. I figured, why pay for the privilege? So I started coloring it myself -- even highlighted it myself. Then...then I got cocky and I cut it myself. Sure, I couldn't see the back, but I could cut by braille, you know? Only I couldn't and now, it's even worse.

So I'm trying a new stylist, highly rated on Yelp.com and yet a little more affordable for camping trips that should come with a valet. He's actually trained in the same place that started me on my research for Split Ends. So I've got my before shot here. You can't tell how bad it is in the photo, but it's totally uneven and hacked up. Wish me luck!

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Kristin  
posted at 10:00 PM  
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SELF IMAGE
Last night Dave's mom called us down around 10 because Dad wouldn't settle down. He wanted to go to the hospital. We got up, got dressed and hurried down to their house. They were both by the front door. Dad pulled me aside and whispered, "Who is that little old lady? I can't do anything to satisfy her." Through the next few minutes we realized:
a. He thought he was very young--just out of school
b. He wanted to go to the hospital because his wife was there.
c. He actually recognized me and Dave--and introduced us to the "little old lady."

Now we had to laugh even though it's heartbreaking and not at all funny in reality but sometimes you have to find the humor in a situation to be able to deal with it. A few minutes later he knew Mom and wondered where the "little old lady" had gone. But it made me think about self-perception. In my head I'm still 19. I'm always shocked when I see a picture or look in the mirror. In my head I'm never as old or as fat as I really am. LOL It also made me wonder what else we deceive ourselves about. Our character? Our personality? Our prowess--or lack thereof of things like cooking,etc? LOL

It's enough to make me long for heaven! This old woman will be 57 in a few weeks. The almost forty years since I've actually been 19 have passed in what seems a blink of the eye. It makes me realize all over again that inner beauty is what it's all about, and I need to be cultivating that more.

How about you? What's your self-image? Any self deception going on with you?

Oh and by the way, the picture is just for fun. This is Alexa on Sunday when she was dedicated!
Colleen Coble  
posted at 7:47 AM  
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SELF IMAGE
Last night Dave's mom called us down around 10 because Dad wouldn't settle down. He wanted to go to the hospital. We got up, got dressed and hurried down to their house. They were both by the front door. Dad pulled me aside and whispered, "Who is that little old lady? I can't do anything to satisfy her." Through the next few minutes we realized:
a. He thought he was very young--just out of school
b. He wanted to go to the hospital because his wife was there.
c. He actually recognized me and Dave--and introduced us to the "little old lady."

Now we had to laugh even though it's heartbreaking and not at all funny in reality but sometimes you have to find the humor in a situation to be able to deal with it. A few minutes later he knew Mom and wondered where the "little old lady" had gone. But it made me think about self-perception. In my head I'm still 19. I'm always shocked when I see a picture or look in the mirror. In my head I'm never as old or as fat as I really am. LOL It also made me wonder what else we deceive ourselves about. Our character? Our personality? Our prowess--or lack thereof of things like cooking,etc? LOL

It's enough to make me long for heaven! This old woman will be 57 in a few weeks. The almost forty years since I've actually been 19 have passed in what seems a blink of the eye. It makes me realize all over again that inner beauty is what it's all about, and I need to be cultivating that more.

How about you? What's your self-image? Any self deception going on with you?

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Colleen Coble  
posted at 7:47 AM  
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Sunday, December 07, 2008

Our 10-year old has been begging us every day for a week, and we've decided tonight is the night. We will go out and find our Christmas tree. With this event planned, I got to thinking (stop here if that scares you) about the things that have become holiday traditions at our house. In fact, for the first time ever, I made a list (and checked it twice) then decided to share it with you. Aren't you lucky?

1. Christmas tree farm--we chop down our own tree at a farm a couple miles from our house. We ride the tram to the trees, bundled from the cold, wielding an axe, then spend 30 minutes trying to agree on which tree is The One. Which leads me to our 2nd tradition:

2. Singing to the tree--We must sing to the tree before we hack it down. "Oh Christmas Tree" is the tune of course, and though our children enjoyed it when they were young, they now just roll their eyes while we sing. Okay, I roll my eyes too and Kevin sings a solo.

3. Ornaments--Every year each of our boys pick an ornament that represents something unique about this year. A cross for a spiritual highlight, a Leprachaun for their first Notre Dame game. It can be anything they remember as special about the year.

4. Cookies--Every year the boys and I bake Christmas cookies and decorate them. Their favorite shape is the Colts logo. We used to make buckeyes until 2 of them developed peanut allergies.

5. Christmas Bureau Families--Since we have so much to be thankful for, we give to three struggling families. What a joy it is to give!

6. Annulal Mid-December Meltdown--This one features me, an impossible to-do list, a box of Kleenex, and a sympathetic husband.

7. Christmas Dinner--two days early. Since we travel over the holidays, we have our family Christmas early. Cornish hens, mashed potato casserole, corn, yeast rolls, and St. Jullian's sparkling grape juice is the menu for the night.

8. Home for the Holidays--all our family is in Ohio, so each year, we pack up the presents and head south. Our boys have never spent a Christmas at home!

9. The Muppets and John Denver--a CD given to us many Christmases ago has become an annual tradition. We never hop into the car for the drive to Ohio without it.

9. The Christmas Story--my dad reads about the true meaning of Christmas from the Bible before we sit down for our Christmas breakfast, always on Christmas eve morning. It's a wonderful time to stop and remember the reason for the season.

10. Light-Up Middletown--a drive-through park, decorated with Christmas lights, has become an annual tradition. One year, we couldn't make it until the park was closed for the night. We drove through anyway and called it "Lights Off Middletown".

11. The Manchester--a very elegant Christmas Day buffet, just our family, my dad and step-mom. A quiet and delicious way to end the season.

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Denise Hunter  
posted at 12:37 PM  
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Saturday, December 06, 2008

I had rotten news this week. My agent is quitting and leaving Yates & Yates and Orange County (CA). To use the literary term, this sucks. I'm not going to find another one like her. First off, I'm the needy sort of client. Not in a demanding, show-me-the-money kind of way, but in the scratch-my-back-and-tell-me-I'm-pretty way. Who is going to put up with that?

Here's just a few things my agent has been through with me. I get really tired when I travel. This is not good for Jeana because it's usually to the East Coast and Jeana is in California. I called her once at six in the morning because a publisher had left me at the Cracker Barrel. My phone call went something like this, "No--sniffle -- no one came...and no one called me...and -- LOUD WAIL -- I AM THE ONLY ONE UNDER 300 LBS HERE!"

IT was hysterical later, but at the time, not so much.

Let's see, she has taken a publisher and me to Disneyland to satisfy my not-so-inner 12 year-old while we talked business. When I was writing that difficult non-fiction topic, she put me in a hotel across from the mother ship (South Coast Plaza) so I could chill afterwards.

After a mix-up in the hotel, she had to sleep with me in NYC while I tumbled nervously over my 3 a.m. (my time) Today Show appearance. Needless to say, I'm bummed -- and just think of what my new agent is going to think!?!

Jeana Ledbetter is a gem among women, and though she won't leave my life (hah, like I'd let her off that easily!), I am truly saddened for me, but thrilled for her and her new adventure!

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Kristin  
posted at 12:09 PM  
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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

I'll be the first to say I'm not a Martha Stewart, okay? Now, don't get me wrong. I like a clean house--but the only sparkle we have around here comes in the form of fancy apple juice.

So it would most likely come as no surprise when I confess to you that I don't do windows. All right, maybe I've washed them a time or two in the last, oh, I don't know, nine or ten years. (Please don't tell my mom.)

The couple of times I tried to be Susie Homemaker, I kid you not, it rained ten minutes later, and those windows looked EXACTLY the same as before I washed them. Now, I don't know what that says to you, but to me it was a sign. I don't need neon lights flashing DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME WASHING WINDOWS, to recognize a no-brainer when I see one.

Things changed, recently, however, when we bought new windows from Windows, Doors & More (waving at Denise and her husband). They are absolutely gorgeous! And imagine my surprise when I looked out our window and spotted a house next to ours! We have neighbors! Who knew?

One downfall, though--and I will carry this with me to my grave--clean windows aren't always a welcome change to some. You see, as I was cleaning the kitchen table, I looked up just as a black bird smacked against our windowpane and slid south. Let me tell you, the look he gave me . . . well, I'm just glad I couldn't hear him. The beady eyes and twist of his beak told me he was using fowl language.

So there you have it. Somewhere in our neighborhood a black bird flies with less confidence, a cracked wing, and a twisted beak. it's just something I have to live with.  Every.  Day.

I could use some encouragement.

Diann Hunt  
posted at 10:05 PM  
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I am fascinated with the human brain. Since I was 19 I've had MS, so I had some of the first MRIs and had a picture to prove my brain's existence from that time. Now, there's brain mapping and Dr. Daniel Amen's clinic (Change your Brain, Change Your Life). It lights up the parts of the brain with the most activity (so if you're screwed up, it will show why! And we're all screwed up.)

Recently, I read a book called "My Stroke of Insight" by Jill Bolte Taylor, Ph.D. This is by far my favorite brain book so far. It's about a brain scientist who has a stroke and recalls the experience almost verbatim. What's so fascinating to me, is this is a left brain woman (scientific, logical) and when she awakes, all she really has is her right brain (creative, flaky side). What I loved about the story is that Dr. Taylor sees the positive in everything because she only has her right, happy brain. She has to train her left brain back, and the right brain keeps her so happy where she doesn't care what others think, so imagine how hard that would be, to want to come back from that innocence!

What I came away with from the book is God has created an Amazing MACHINE in the brain. It can knit itself back together with love (from Dr. Taylor's mom & friends), training and sleep. Lots of sleep (as a non-morning person, I liked that -- I might be more put together if I got to sleep!)

I don't think we'll ever understand the brain in full, but wouldn't it be great if we could find out things like why some calm down with coffee (me) and others go mental on it? Wouldn't it be great to catch the mind of a serial killer before he acted and change it somehow? This book is a must-read because it really shows you how important your job as a parent is, and how those early coddles really shape who we are. A child without love is a Mumbai massacre waiting to happen.

In her right brain, Dr. Taylor is thankful for everything. She is drooling, but she's thankful she can swallow. She's falling over, but she's grateful she is upright -- and she trains herself to be more like this. As Christians wouldn't that be something? To show gratitude in everything? As a mom with four kids and MS, who some days doesn't want to get out of bed, I should be grateful that I CAN get out of bed, that this disease hasn't progressed again to the point I'm in a wheelchair and that my confusion comes and goes. It doesn't stay around and take residence. What about you, what have you forgotten to be grateful for?

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Kristin  
posted at 10:20 AM  
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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

THE GREEN-EYED MONSTER
Until Alexa came along, I never realized how much jealousy lurked inside me. I'd be the first one to hand over my coat if you were freezing or to give you shoes or whatever. I'll never be rich because I like to give stuff too much. But that only goes so far. It does NOT apply to the granddaughter I've waited decades on.

I love seeing how much her Poppy loves her too. I'm okay sharing her with her great-grandparents, and I'm thrilled they love her too, but I still hover as close as I can so I can see her face. But this week a new event occurred in her young life. Donna had to go back to work. Alexa is now in daycare. The thought of some STRANGERS getting to rock her, to feed her, to hear her coo is about to do me in. LOL I told Donna I've been praying someone at the daycare will fall in love with her and care for her like I would. And I do pray for that because I love her and want her cherished. But oh the thought that someone else gets to see that smile and hear that little chuckle she's just learning to make sure hurts!

If I thought it would work, I'd rent an office near Donna's place of employment, set up a crib and toys and a recliner for me to work and I'd write when she takes her nap! LOL But I know I'm being silly. She's going to be fine. I'm just not so sure about me! So that's my struggle for December. You have anything you're struggling with?

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Colleen Coble  
posted at 7:20 AM  
  Comments (10)
 
 
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Monday, December 01, 2008

It's just a number.


This is what I keep telling myself. Tomorrow is my 40th birthday and I have to admit, this one has been a little hard. I'm not sure why. The sagging, aging, drooping stuff started three years ago. That is the year that should've been rough.


It's not even that I've officially hit middle age, because I believe that starts around 35. The big 3-0 didn't phase me one bit. No, I'm not sure what's so bothersome about hitting that 4th decade.


Either way, I've been telling myself I'm 40 all year long, kind of easing into it like sliding into a pair of jeans I know won't fit, a bit of trepidation, a little dread.


But tomorrow it'll be here and there's no turning back the clock. I guess the only thing to do is forge forward, head high, and walk with dignity into the next decade. No kicking and screaming allowed. Temper tantrums at 40 are not pretty.
Denise Hunter  
posted at 7:17 AM  
  Comments (18)
 
 
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The Authors
Kristin Billerbeck
Kristin Billerbeck is a proud Californian, wife, mother of four, and connoisseur of the irrelevant. She writes Christian Chick Lit; where she finds need for most of the useless facts lulling about in her head.

www.KristinBillerbeck.com

Colleen Coble

Colleen Coble writes romantic suspense with a strong atmospheric element. A lovable animal of some kind--usually a dog--always populates her novels. She can be bribed with DeBrand mocha truffles.

www.ColleenCoble.com

Denise Hunter

Denise Hunter writes women's fiction and love stories with a strong emotional element. Her husband says he provides her with all her romantic material, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too.

www.DeniseHunterBooks.com

Diann Hunt

Diann Hunt writes romantic comedy and humorous women's fiction. She has been happily married forever, loves her family, chocolate, her friends, chocolate, her dog, and well, chocolate.

www.DiannHunt.com

Hannah Alexander

Cheryl Hodde writes romantic medical suspense under the pen name of Hannah Alexander, using all the input she can get from her husband, Mel, for the medical expertise. For fun she hikes and reads. Out of guilt, she rescues discarded cats. She and Mel are presently taking orders from four pampered strays.

www.HannahAlexander.com

 
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