Wednesday, February 22, 2012

I appreciate you stopping by, however, I'm taking a little respite from the Internet and writing world.  I'm on vacation until March 1st, but I'll be back rejuvenated and ready to go.  Until then, stay safe, be healthy, and dance like no one's watching.  :)


Tender Return

Ever been inspired by old photographs?  While looking through a shoebox of old snapshots I got from my mother, I was particularly struck by pictures of her and my father before they met and others right after they married.  In some, my dad looked like a gangster, but in his naval uniform, taken in the early 40's, he looked every bit the part of a movie star in one of the many Hollywood film's about the era.  My mother, in her floral dress, platform shoes, dark red lipstick and hair-styled for the time, could have been his co-star. 

I've always adored those movies where the hero goes off to war and the heroine waits for his return, patient, missing him, and wondering if he'll come back to her.  I can't think of a more romantic time in history.

 Looking at images of my parents about they time they discovered one another was the impetus for my novella, Tender Return.  Here's a sample for you:


Why won’t Meagan Murphy’s father allow her to date anyone in uniform?  His rule flies out the window when she meets Ryan Cullen at the local USO.  Time is short before his unit ships overseas, and there’s only one gift she can offer to help him remember their last night together—her virginity.  Will Ryan return and ask her father’s permission to marry… or are all those nightly radio newscasts warning her to prepare for the worst?


Texas, March 1943

Meagan Murphy tapped her toe beneath the food-laden table despite the fact she’d been hunched over it for hours, dishing out portions at the weekly USO dance. Preferring to find a partner and have a little fun, she methodically spooned mashed potatoes onto passing plates and eyed the “jitterbuggers” on the floor.
“Can I have some gravy, please?” A deep voice drew her attention.
The eyes she looked into were darker than the sauce he requested, and his perfectly formed lips curved into a dimpled smile. She cleared her throat and picked up the ladle. “Say when.”
“How about right after I polish off this chow.”
“Excuse me?” She cocked a brow.
“You said, say when. I thought you were inviting me to dance.” He winked.
There was something about him -- different from the other GIs. She’d found flirting a common occurrence here and ignored it, but this brazen specimen piqued her interest. Still, she didn’t dare encourage him. “I meant tell me how much gravy you want on your potatoes.” She drizzled juice over his plate.
“When!” He smiled then dabbed at a spot of gravy on the plate’s edge. “About that dance…” He licked his finger clean.
The fellow behind him cast an impatient stare at her.
“You’re holding up the line,” she said, feeling her cheeks heat. She grew tired of the mingling food aromas.
“Tell me your name, and I’ll move along.”
“Meagan. Now scoot. You’re going to get us both into trouble.” She glanced across the room to where her father sat. She hated when he dropped in. His presence was such a damper on the evening. He forbade her to show anything more than polite attention to men in uniform.
“Name’s Ryan Cullen.” He moved onto the bread basket. “I’ll look for you when you’re done.”
Managing a weak smile, she wondered how to avoid him and an embarrassing explanation then waved across the room to her mother and younger sister, Martha. They sat next to her father along the far wall. Thomas Murphy, a local councilman, felt it his civic duty to visit once a month to show his support of the USO and their mission. Meagan felt sorry for her sister, who fidgeted and looked bored to tears. It wouldn’t be any different were she older, because Daddy only supported the troops to the extent that they stayed away from his daughters.
Meagan sighed. So much for dancing with Ryan Cullen. At least tonight. Hopefully, he’d come next week when her father stayed home and listened to his infernal radio. She nibbled her lip and wondered if Ryan danced as good as he looked, but an annoying fly buzzed too close to the food and interrupted her thoughts. She swatted at it and planted her hand firmly in the remaining mashed potatoes. Her immediate hope was that no one saw, and she gasped when she spied a dead insect beneath her palm.
Luckily, her replacement showed up with a fresh bowl. “Time to take over,” she said.
“Thank goodness. My feet are screaming. See you next week.” Meagan quickly transferred her dish to the cart behind the table, removed her apron, and cast it into a box. She rubbed the small of her back and shrugged her tired shoulders.
“Ready to dance?”
She jumped at Ryan’s voice. “I…I can’t -- ”
“Can’t believe your good fortune? Can’t wait to dance with me?” He took her hand.
She was about to address his arrogance when her sister scurried over and elbowed her in the side. “Meg, Daddy says it’s time to go. You know you aren’t supposed to talk to strangers.” Martha twirled a braid and flashed a grin at Ryan.
Meagan withdrew her hand from Ryan’s as if a flame burned her palm then stooped until her face was inches away from her sibling’s. “Really, why don’t you act your age? You’re thirteen, not five,” she whispered.
She straightened and turned her attention back to Ryan. “I’m sorry, but I have to go. Maybe we can have that dance another time.” She lowered her lashes then grabbed her sister’s arm and yanked her toward where their parents waited. “Honestly, why do you insist on embarrassing me?”
Martha pulled free. “You liked him. I could tell. And if you don’t be nice to me, I’m gonna tell Daddy you promised to dance with that fellow.”

You can find this and my other work available on Amazon.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Finally, a Doctor I relate to...

Q: Doctor, I've heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life.  Is this true?
A: Heart only good for so many beats, and that it... Don't waste on exercise.  Everything wear out eventually.  Speeding up heart not make you live longer; it like saying you extend life of car by driving faster.  Want to live longer?  Take nap.

Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?   
A:  Oh no.  Wine made from fruit.  Brandy distilled wine, that mean they take water out of fruity bit so you get even more of goodness that way.  Beer also made of grain.  Bottom up!

Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?
A: Well, if you have body and you have fat, your ratio one to one.  If you have two body, your ratio two to one.

Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
A: Can't think of single one, sorry.  My philosophy: No pain...good! 
Q:  Aren't fried foods bad for you?   
A:  YOU NOT LISTENING!  Food fried in vegetable oil.  How getting more vegetable be bad?

Q  :  Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle?
A:  Oh no!  When you exercise muscle, it get bigger.  You should only be doing sit-up if you want bigger stomach. 

Q:  Is chocolate bad for me? 
A:  You crazy?!?  HEL-LO-O!!  Cocoa bean!  Another vegetable!  It best feel-good food around!

Q:  Is swimming good for your figure? 
A:  If swimming good for figure, explain whale to me.

Q:  Is getting in shape important for my lifestyle? 
A:  Hey!  'Round' is shape!

Well... I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.

And  remember like I'm sure you've heard before: 
Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways - Chardonnay in one hand - chocolate in the other - body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO-HOO, what a ride!!"   

For  those of you who watch what you eat, here's the final word on nutrition and health.  It's a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.   

1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

3. The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

4. The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans... 

5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.

CONCLUSION:  Eat and drink what you like.   Speaking English is apparently what kills you. 

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Lorrie Striuff is Dishin' It Out

I invited Lorrie to stop by and tell us a little bit about what's going on with her and her writing.  I've read her work, and I'm a fan, so I always welcome her to Dishin' It Out.  Today she brought a friend who's going to do the talking.  So, without anymore blathering from Beggar:
Hi, Ginger, thanks for the invite. I’m doin’ summersaults bein’ here.
      Now, I know his is kinda early, but I wanna introduce myself to the folks anyways. I’ll be showin’ up in a book near September.
My name’s Beggar, and I’m a proud ringtail monkey. Yep, you read right. Like an entertainer for an organ grinder.
Here’s my story.
See, I escaped my chains from a downright nasty man that used me to make money for his medicine show. We traveled around the west. He’d trained me do tricks to make people laugh, and some other mighty mean things that I won’t mention. Might get me into trouble. *looks both ways for the law.*
Making my way north, hungry, thirsty, I come upon this empty office with food. Well, I dove right into that there chicken and biscuits in the lunch basket. Yowee, it was good eatin’. See, I eat both meat and fruit. Almost any dang thing when I’m starving.
Now, how was I ‘posed to know I was in the sheriff’s office? I can’t read worth a lick.
Well, when Sheriff Cole come in, he found me hiding under his desk and pulled his six shooter wantin’ to shoot me, I was scared witless. I tried doin’ tricks for him, but he was madder than a wet hen at me for eatin’ his lunch.
He done tried to get me outta the office with a broom first. He promised me lots of things if I left. But there was somthin’ about the man that I took a likin’ to. So, no sirreee, I didn’t want to leave. ‘Sides, that food was real good. Maybe I’d get some more.
Again he said he was a gonna shoot me, but when that there pretty Mattie gal come in the office, she put a stop to his foolishness. *I could tell, she sure jingled his spurs.*And, she liked me. She picked me up, held me, cuddled me, and they took off my awful collar. Mattie said she took a shine to men who had pets. *Ha. That sure ‘nuff  put Cole on the spot.* I was so grateful, I sure wasn’t leavin’ this nice place.
I found me a new home there, though I’m not so sure Cole ‘preciated the fact. He called me, “A Heap of Trouble.”
Lookin’ back, guess he was right. But we got to be good friends anyhows.
So, until we really meet, here’s a couple short stories by my author you might take a likin’ to.
Thanks again, Ginger. Want to cuddle a bit? I like to cuddle up with pretty gals.

Last Dance.
Bren is in love with a troubled boy and she hopes he asks her to the prom. The most popular girl in school, Jean, plays on Rip’s troubled soul. Does Bren get revenge?
Wild Blackberries
Morgan is researching on an Indian reservation in Prescott, Arizona for her new paranormal novel. She doesn’t believe in the paranormal, but writes it for the trend and the nice royalties. That is until her soon to be divorced husband tries to kill her, and she survives by her wits and a little “strange” help.

Lorrie lives in West Mifflin, PA, thirty minutes from downtown Pittsburgh. She lives at home with her husband and her favorite toy—a computer.
    She writes in many genres so you never know what she will come out with next. She never wants to bore her readers and enjoys the thrill of entertaining them by writing a good story.
For more of her stories, visit her site at

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Ginger's Six Sentence Sunday

Since my site seemed to pick up interest with my time-travel, Sisters in Time, today I'm switching gears to my current WIP, Hattie's Hero which started as a western historical but has shockingly become another time-travel romance.  I'll be adding snippets as I create the story, so hopefully SSS will inspire me to hurry up and finish. As a "pantser", I'm discovering Hattie to be the hardest heroine I've worked with yet, so I appreciate your visit and comments.  Don't forget to go back to SSS and visit other sites where you'll find some great shares.

Set Up:  Planning to leave the orphanage, Hattie stands with a valise in hand and surveys the room filled with sleeping children.  Her heart's heavy, but as the oldest orphan there, it's time for her to begin new memories.

Here's my six from the opening chapter:

She [Hattie] had no recollection of life before coming to the orphanage and very few pleasant memories. The meager belongings she’d packed consisted of a second gray smock identical to the one she wore, another pair of stockings, well-worn pantalets, and a chemise yellowed with age. The only shoes she owned were on her feet. She stared down at the scuffed toes and sighed. The paper thin soles provided little protection, and she’d mended one of the laces by knotting the break. Would she ever own a pair that hadn’t been worn by someone else?

Thanks for coming by, and I hope you'll be back with encouragement to forge on with Hattie's journey and what lies ahead for her.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Building Your Writer’s Platform - C.K. Volnek

C.K. Volnek is my special guest today and she's provided a very helpful post.  Help me welcome her to Dishin' It Out.

Hi Ginger. Thanks for allowing me to visit on your blog today. Today I would like to visit with our readers (and writers) about Marketing and Platform.

Did you know, 83 percent of American adults dream of becoming a published author? Few will complete the elusive manuscript and even fewer have their books land in the hands of the readers. And it is said that less than 2 percent of authors will become rich from their book sales.

Yes, writing is a tough business. It is not a choice for those weak of heart. But if your muse won’t let you stop writing—like mine—then you need learn everything you can about writing AND marketing.

Writing a book is not only about the writing. To be successful, one must build The Golden Triangle. Literary Agent Michael Larsen talked about the triangle in his book, How To Write a Book Proposal. (I definitely suggest this book!)

‘The three sides of the Golden Triangle of a successful writing career are Writing, Promoting, and Building Communities. At the apex of the triangle is your vision of success. The two sides are Writing and Promoting. The base of the triangle is Building Communities because people are essential to your success.’

‘You can’t reach the top without writing and promoting books that deliver. But the people who want to help you are crucial for getting you from where you are to where you want to go.’

A writer must make building communities a lifelong commitment because the more people you know the further you’ll go.

Most writers would love to simply write…and only write, but a publishing goal is a most important part of the equation. Jack Canfield in quoted as saying ‘the success of a book is 90 percent promotion.’

All writers today need to do self-promotion.  Promotion won’t sell a bad book, but promotion will make a good book a success.

Promotion is all about building relationships, to get people to know, trust and like you; to have something of value to offer them. And the best promotion is ‘word of mouth.’

To begin a writing career, a writer needs to have two main goals:

·      First, a writer needs to know what kind of book he/she wants to write and what kind of emotions he/she wants from his/her reader.

·      Second, a writer needs to have publishing goals.

An author also needs to challenge themselves and their writer platform. Do you have a web page or a blog? Are you on twitter and facebook? What communities and groups do you belong to?

An author, whether currently published, in the process of being published or trying to get published NEEDS to explore these platform needs and include as many of the following elements in their promotional library as they can.

*  Web Page. First and foremost, an author needs a web page. An author needs this presence way before their book is ever sold. Think of the web page as a road, bringing readers to your door so when you have that coveted book ready to debut, they already know and like you. (If cost is an issue, there are many inexpensive ways to create your web page. There are several sites that offer free web site building. Weebly, Wix, Yola all advertise drag and drop web-site building so you don’t need html coding. Many also allow you to use a purchased domain name.)

When creating your web page, be conscious about your url. If you only plan to write one book, or one series, you might use the title of the book. But I advise the author to use their name as their url. How better to build name recognition than to keep your name ever in the forefront? (And purchase this url before you ever publish as there are many a scammer who will see your name out there and buy up your url and then want to sell it back to you at a ridiculous price.)

*  Blog. A blog is a great way to get your name out, to offer something to your readers and followers. But the writer must make sure to offer something of value in return for their visit. Know your reader and give them something to keep coming back for.  

*  Facebook. This is an excellent social media contact for family, friends and followers. These people will follow you and learn and celebrate your good news.

*  Twitter. This social media is fast and frenzied. It’s a wonderful tool to send short quips and bursts to as many people want to follow you as possible. (And it’s a great source of information, such as contests like those on Pitch University. ;-)

*  Groups. Groups are as important as best friends. They are your NEW best friends. A writer should know who his or her reader is and go after the groups that would find their story valuable. This can be daunting as it’s virtually endless.

*  Promotional sites. Just a few of the many to mention are Amazon, Good Reads, Jacket Flap, Borders and Barnes and Noble. Many, many, many!

*  Reviews. Okay, this is one area I never realized I should be so involved in. I do read…a lot, but I’m lacking in reviews. Why? I really don’t have a reason. But it’s a bad reason, whatever it might be. By writing reviews, one is building recognition, trust, and relationships.

*  Trailers/Podcasts. Trailers are a super way to create a memorable image for your book. I seen a great trailer for a picture book. Made me want to go right out and buy it. And pod-casts…another great way to ‘tell’ your story on the internet…literally!

*  Following blogs and websites. I can’t express this enough. This is how you make friends. Follow the people you admire most and make sure you comment on their posts. But like any relationship, this takes work and you can’t just visit once and think they’re your friend for life.

In closing, I would like to challenge our readers/writers to be ‘entrepreneurial’ with their writing. The internet offers a wealth of opportunities to produce, publish and build a platform. As an author, you are a business and you have to promote ‘you.’ But as you ponder promotion, I hope you realize there is something even more important than just ‘promoting you’…it is to build lasting relationships. I’ve learned one can never have enough friends. And it’s these friends who will help share my stories with the readers I want to reach.

So, even if you are like me, a small fish in a very big pond, know that with our ‘friends’, we grow bigger each and every day. If you see me on-line, I’d love to get the opportunity to say ‘hello’ and ask you ‘to please be my friend.’ 

Thanks and happy marketing.

C.K. Volnek
Ghost Dog of Roanoke Island – A tween ghost story with a twist of Native American folklore and based on the true mystery of the Lost Colony of Roanoke Island
A Horse Called Trouble – A young teen must overcome her own abused past to save the defiant horse who has taught her to love and trust again.
Coming soon…The Secret of the Stone – A young boy is thrust into mystic mayhem when the gift he’s given to protect is enchanted with the magic of Merlin.

Twitter:  CKVolnek
Face Book:  C.K. Volnek
Good Reads and Jacket Flap
Book Blogs, YALitChat and Kindle Boards
(just to name a few of the many great sites on the internet!)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Author, Roseanne Dowell is Here Today...

I've invited Roseanne Dowell to visit Dishin' It Out today, and she's brought along the heroine from her latest release, Secrets, Lies and Love.  I know you'll enjoy getting to know Meghan, and since I've already read Roseanne's book, I can tell you I thoroughly enjoyed the story, plus I really like her writing style.  While other authors use lots of internal thoughts, which I hate, Roseanne poses narrative questions which heighten the reader's interest and keep them turning pages. If you like twists and turns, then this is a book for you.
Welcome, Roseanne, and thanks for bringing your special guest.  Let's turn this over to her right now:
Hi, I’m Meghan Shelby. My parents moved away from Littleton when I was seventeen, but now, here it is ten years later, I’m back.
I inherited the family home, a Queen Anne Victorian from my Aunt Beth. I always loved that house, so needless to say I was excited when I received the letter from my aunt’s attorney. Not that my aunt passed away, I was very sad about that, but coming back to Littleton after all this time was exciting.
I’m not sure why we moved away in the first place. It was all kind of sudden and we never came back. Not once in all those years, not even when Gran passed away. I never knew why. Every time I asked, the question went ignored. Eventually, I quit asking.
Anyway, here I was back in the town I loved, standing in front of a dilapidated, rundown home that used to be one of the most elegant in town. Shutters hung by one hinge, windows broken, the porch floor rotted and the back door lock didn’t work.
How had Aunt Beth allowed this to happen? I was half afraid to go inside, but curiosity got the best of me and I ventured in. What a mess. It was going to take a lot of money to get this place back to its glory days. And the stench was almost unbearable. Well, no wonder, I discovered a dead body in the living room.
Who he was, or why he was there in my house, I had no idea. For some reason, the sheriff wasn’t convinced. To top it all off, he caught me in the arms of my new boss, the principal of the elementary school and the guy I had a crush on all those years ago. Oh, I was hired as school secretary, guess you need to know that.
Needless to say, I was the main topic of conversation around town the next day. Gossipmongers in Littleton were having a ball at my expense.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, the next day several eighth grade boys caught the principal kissing me in his office. I’d never live it down. Not that I minded being kissed, especially by Patrick. I just didn’t need it spread all over town.
Once I hired a handyman to fix the windows and change the locks, I rolled up my sleeves and got busy scrubbing the place inside so we could paint. I hired high school kids for that job. There was only so much I could do with working full time. But at least I was able to move in.
That’s when more trouble started. Someone broke in and I received phone calls warning me to leave. Obviously, someone didn’t want me here. If you want to know more, you’re going to have to read the book.
Secrets, Lies, & Love is available from Amazon.
Meghan loved this time of year, though a little too hot to start school in her opinion. Why they felt the need to go back in August was beyond her. She remembered her mother complaining about it years ago. “What was wrong with starting after Labor Day like they did in my day?” Her mother used to rant and rave for weeks before school started. Even got on the School Board. Not that it changed anything. School still started the last week in August. Meghan smiled at the memory.
Now that she thought about it, it was silly. Like they took the last week of vacation away from the kids. Bet the teachers didn’t like it either.
Meghan pulled into the school parking lot. Not much had changed here either. New landscaping, new windows, but that was about it. The old building looked pretty much the same.
Her footsteps echoed in the empty hall. She’d never been in the school when it was empty before. The strong odor of wax and other cleaning products prickled her nostrils. The clean smell lingered through the first few days of school.
It had been a long time since she’d been to the principal’s office and she stopped outside, took a deep breath and held it. Here goes nothing. Mr. Duncan said look for Mr. Mac.  He must be new in town. It wasn’t a name she remembered. So what was the worse he could say? Letting out her breath, she hurried inside, before her nerve left her. A man stood with his back to her, unpacking a box of books.
“Excuse me. I’m looking for Mr. Mac.”
 “I’m Mr. Mac.” He turned toward her.
Meghan’s breath caught in her throat. “Patrick!” The word slipped out of her mouth, before she could stop it. The love of her life stood in front of her, even better looking and sexier than she remembered. Her heart skipped a beat, her legs turned to jelly, and she grabbed the edge of the desk to steady herself.
Patrick smiled at her. That easy smile she remembered from long ago. The smile she used to love. It lit up his eyes.
“Little Meghan Shelby. Not so little anymore I see.”
Heat burned her cheeks as Patrick looked her up and down, apparently taking in every inch of her. He remembered her. After all this time he knew who she was. Would wonders never cease?
“Uh, um...” Oh crap. Now wasn’t the time to get tongue tied. “You’re the principal here?” Lord, could she work for him. See him every day?
“Yes, I am. I heard you were back in town. Are you staying then? Do you want to register your child?”
“Huh?” Her child, was he nuts? “Uh no I’m here about the secretarial position. Mr. Duncan was supposed to call you.”
“Really? You want the job?”
“Yes, didn’t Mr. Duncan call? He told me to come right over.”
 “If he did I didn’t hear the phone. I’ve been in and out of the office.” He nodded toward the stack of books. “Too busy around here this time of year.” Patrick grinned and motioned her into his office. “So tell me about yourself. What qualifies you for the job?”
Qualifications? Think damn it. What was the matter with her? She’d lost all train of thought. “Well, I’m computer proficient. I’m good with math. And I love children.” What more could he want?
“I see. So why do you want the position? Tell me about your education.”
His deep voice sent shivers down her spine. Meghan couldn’t take her gaze from him. All sense of reason flew out the window. She had the most God awful urge to reach up and push his dark hair out of his eyes. “I’m a former Math major, have two years of college. I’m a quick learner.” Finally, she looked away.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Best First Love of 2011

Best First Love of 2011

This is probably going to be the strangest FIRST love story you'll read in this contest, but it's definitely true, and something that changed my life for the better.

In June, my husband and I traveled to Alaska to visit an old friend and ex-classmate.  Ann is a FNP with her own family practice in Eagle River, and her specialty happens to be Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy.  I was intrigued to learn more about the process.

 For the past three years, I felt like my health was on a decline and I just couldn't shake the fatigue, lack of interest in doing anything or zest for life in general.  The fact that I even made the trip surprised me.  I'd become a real flake...planning to do things, but then cancelling at the last minute because I didn't feel well.  But, Ann encouraged me to do my own research on the BHRT process that's been around since the 40s to decide for myself if I thought having pellets implanted under my skin might be for me.

What did I have to lose?  My husband is ten years younger than I, and that was a big concern. My plan to nag him so much that he aged at double the rate took more energy than I had, plus to borrow a partial title from a song, "I'd lost that loving feeling." My mood affected his,  so, both hubby and I volunteered to give pellets a try.

To make a long story short, to say that being "pelleted" changed my life is an understatement.  I became more energetic, my skin tone improved, I felt younger than I had in years, and like when my husband and I had first met years ago, I couldn't keep my hands off him.  Okay, okay, TMI, I know, but you have to realize that we have hormones for a reason, and without them, we sacrifice so much of ourselves.  My husband got his wife back, I got my zest for life (and other things) back, and I'll be using pellets for the rest of my days.

People worry that the pellets aren't FDA approved...well, there's a reason for that.  The drug companies don't want you to know that the very hormones your body used to produce can be replaced, and you can stop taking all the little happy pills they prescribe for you.  Pellets cut into their profits...all but the greedy docs who see this as a money making venture and charge an arm and a leg to introduce patients to the process.  Still, there are some honest doctors out there who want you to feel better, and it's not about the money, it's about you.  So, my greatest new love for 2011 was discovering Bio-identical Hormone Replacement therapy.  It made me LOVE who I am again, and gave me back what was missing in my life! 

Who could ask for a better Valentines Day present?  But, BHRT is not just for that holiday, it's Thanksgiving, Christmas and a New Year all rolled into one.  I guess finding my friend Ann, after all these years, and her insistence that we visit was a great big blessing.  I found a new sister to replace the one I'd lost as well as finding me again. By the way...this is a completely unsolicited endorsement.  *lol*

Remember, this is a blog hop, so please visit all the participants.  I'll be announcing my winners after 6:00 pm in the comment section here.


Thank you so much for visiting and and hopefully enjoying my entries into this fun, fun blog hop, and thank you Ravencraft's Realm for putting on such a stimulating event!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

First Breakup or Makeup

First Breakup

It was over.  I couldn't believe I'd cheated on my boyfriend...and with his buddy, to boot.  What was wrong with me?  I had the most handsome boyfriend in the Air Force, stationed only a few miles from my house and I blew it.  Sure, my dad didn't approve of me dating GIs, but I'd gotten my neighbor to sign my permission slip to be a Jr. Hostess at the base dances.  All those nights my parents thought I was at my friends...well, I sort of was.  :)
But those memories were gone.  I'd thrown away a blue-eyed, blond hunk for a chance to go out with someone who looked exactly like Fabian Forte, and now I hated that I'd been so stupid.  I couldn't stop crying, and Woody's phone calls, while drinking, of course (yes he was older than me), kept reminding me that I'd broken his heart.  Still I questioned how much he cared for me when he refused to call me by name because he thought I looked more like a, "Sue."  Maybe that was an omen. Still, the thought of not being with him crushed my very soul.

I went to school the following Monday, depressed, upset, and wanting to be anywhere but in a classroom trying to concentrate.  All I could think about was getting Woody back.  But how?  It didn't dreams were dashed during lunch, when I overheard my nemesis, Diana, talking about how she was now dating Woody since he'd tossed me in the trash.  Broken heart my buttcheek!  He hadn't wasted a minute of time getting over me.  Although I can't say I didn't smile when I heard her tell her friend that they couldn't actually "date" for a while since he'd broken both his legs jumping off the barracks balcony after he discovered I'd cheated.  Alcohol seems to make people think they're invincible or something. My immediate thought was,   I wonder if Bill, Fabian's twin, is still available.  To shorten my story, he wasn't, but I ended up with Sonny Swegles as my next possible conquest.  It's amazing how quickly your heart heals when you're young, and there are so many possibilities.  :)

Postscript:  I still wonder what happened to Woody, and wish he hadn't had such a common name (Johnny Woods).  I'd love to know if life was kinder to him after he left the military.  I know Diana and he lasted only a short time, and she married another of our classmates and they're still wed to date.  I went on to find happiness with my first husband, and we lasted thirty-two years, so that's not a bad track record.  :)  I'm on marriage number two now (featured a few of my "first" posts) and we just celebrated fifteen years wed but we jokingly tell people it's been fifty.  God, I'm old.  I've been married longer than most people have been alive.  Don't know how that works when I'm actually 35 in my mind.

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Saturday, February 11, 2012

First Kiss

First Kiss

Friday was always film day in the fifth grade.  I had the biggest crush on Mickey Cully.  To me, he was one of the two cutest boys in school, and he'd actually been letting me wear his baseball cap all week, which was a sure sign that he liked me back.  During recess, my teacher, Mr. Cook pulled me aside and asked if I'd close the room darkening curtains in preparation for the movie.  To do so, one had to walk behind the plastic draperies and tug them together with a thick cord.  I had some unexpected help.  Mickey had followed me behind the curtains, and when I turned to express my surprise, he very abruptly, and without any ceremony, pressed his lips to mine, in my very first boy/girl kiss.

We all read about tummy butterflies in romance novels, but I'm here to tell you that this one innocent kiss set a whole passel loose in my stomach.  The kiss didn't last very long, and it certainly wasn't one worthy of a novel, but at that time in my life, I was floating on a cloud.  Mickey Cully had kissed me, and for the moment, I didn't even care about the rumor floating around that he ate dog food sandwiches for lunch.

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Friday, February 10, 2012

First Dance

It's Day four already.  Glad to see you here!

First Dance

It was early in the 60's, and Dick Dale and the Deltones were appearing, as they normally did, at the National Guard armory in Riverside's Fairmount Park.  My new boyfriend asked me to go with him and another couple.  What fun, double-dating with my best friend and his.  Surfing music was the rage, and Dale(no relation to Dick Dale) loved the fashion and dressed in plaid shirts, jeans, Huarache sandals and drove a low-rider Chevy I swear I could hear him start from the other side of town.  Loud pipes were just as fashionable as loud surfing music.

I was anything but a "Little Surfer Girl," but I sure loved the guy who was only missing a wood-sided station wagon (Woody) with a surfboard on top.

This concert was my first.  I was excited, but I don't remember being the least bit nervous.  Just had those tummy butterflies at the thought of slow dancing with the boy I adored.  I can't even recall what I wore, but I do remember that Dale's mother had tried bleaching his hair and it was a horrible shade of orange, but he didn't seem to mind, and thought he looked really cool.  I thought he looked more like Charlie Brown's, "The Great Pumpkin."  *lol*  But, I digress.  We arrived at the dance and the place was packed.  Despite the startling change to his hair color, I was still proud to walk in hand-in-hand with such a tall, good-looking boyfriend.  I dreamed of the moment the band struck up a slow song and we danced for the first time.

What had I been thinking?  Most surfing music wasn't fact I could only think of a few that were.  When the band took the stage, their first tune, Misirlou, was geared at getting the party started.  Zinging guitars and heavy drums sent Dale into a dancing frenzy.  He grabbed my hand and dragged me to the floor...mid floor of all places, as he went into his imitation of a surfer on a board, hands out for balance, leaping straight into the air with each imaginary wave that he crested. I recall being too stunned to move, and watching him probably with wide eyes and gaping mouth.  I realized, no one else was dancing either.  He'd taken the spotlight, and gained approval that shocked me.  The thundering applause at his crazy antics only spurred him to higher jumps and spins.

Oh, we finally got that slow dance, but by that time, he was a sweaty mess from never missing a dance.  I relinquished his partnership a few times, and although the rest of the masses had taken the floor, I never lost track of him.  He was the one head that leapt higher than the crowd every few minutes.  The smile on his face was unforgettable, as with my experience with our first dance.  I can't say it dulled my feelings for him...we got married a few years later.  I guess you could say, he leapt right into my heart.  :)

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