Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mind your Glasses

wearing glasses, glasses, prescription glasses
It is possible to find the right style of glasses
When I found out last year my daughter needed glasses, I was a little scared. I've never had to wear glasses, so I couldn't relate. Would I be able to help her pick out the right style? Would she be teased for her new-found, but necessary look?

After visiting with the specialist, it was indeed true. She would need eyeglasses to see the board during class. She was actually pretty excited. Glasses meant she would no longer be squinting to see. It was definitely something we wanted to nip in the bud right away.

Now going through an eye exam is not fun. After all, who wants air blown into their eyes. However, it isn't the hardest part. The hardest part is actually picking out the frames. There are so many eyeglasses frames to choose from.

Why couldn't they just make it easy? When I was in the military, everybody who needed glasses got the same frame. Granted, they didn't look good, and comfort wasn't exactly a priority. They were purely to see. When it came to trendy glasses at the store, the selection was endless. Do you pick square frames? Do you want circle frames? Do you want wire? Do you want plastic? Do you want name-brand? Do you want generic? 

Personally, I prefer the ones with the big bushy eyebrows and a mustache.
glasses, mustache glasses, glasses with style, trendsetter
Finding the right glasses can be tricky!
After hours  of looking through the glasses, my daughter finally decided on a pair. Now that we had to buy glasses for her, I can only imagine how her failing eyesight is going to impact our pocket book. That little visit cost a pretty penny. Do we have any other options?

The answer is yes!

After visiting, there is a less painful way of picking out frames. Not only are they high quality frames and lenses, but I can do it from the comfort of my own home. They come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee and a generous refer-a-friend program. With 2 people in my household who wear glasses, I bet you can guess where we will be shopping next time., buy eyeglasses online
As an added bonus, if you visit, you can take 10% off any order of prescription glasses with the code: Blog10. Or check out the Sales & Coupons page for current site-wide deals. 

Disclosure: I received payment from for this article. The opinions and story included in this article belong entirely to the author.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

I need a 27 hour day

too many hats
Sometimes, this is how I feel!
I have been gone lately. Maybe you have noticed. It isn't that I have given up on writing, I just haven't had the time. Returning to school has taken up a big portion of my time, and when I am done, it leaves my brain in a cramped up state I can't seem to even come up with the right words to put down on the screen.

I seem to be wearing too many hats lately. I am a busy body, so it isn't like I am not used to running myself past the point of exhaustion. However, lately I have been more exhausted than usual. My therapist has stated my exhaustion is stemming from the need to control EVERYTHING. Maybe she is right.

School is just one of the many hats that I wear. I am also a wife, a mother and a taxi cab driver. With my two oldest children back in school, I have now needed to get back into a schedule. There isn't an available bus system, and since my oldest daughter has moved into middle school, it also means I have to get all the kids up and ready and in the car to drive her across the city. It's only 3 miles and it takes about 30 minutes out of my morning. I am not really complaining. It is minor.

I am also attempting to work on my second book. By attempting, I more or less mean I have been actively thinking about it. I haven't had the time to work on it. I will happily say I seemed to have thought of an awesome plot twist. However, my excitement still hasn't provided the drive to actually write it yet.

I have also wanted to take more time to work on my blog. But every single time I think about writing a blog, I can't seem to find anything I want to write about. I want it to be passionate. Yet, I find myself filled with so much anger lately that I don't want to pass on my negativity to others. That leaves for many blank pages.

I have been told I need to relax. To maybe even lose control a little bit. Sadly though, I don't think that is part of my personality. I am being pulled into so many directions I am not even sure I am capable of accomplishing one thing. I feel responsible for the state of my house, for my homework, for my lack of being able to keep up with other writer's in my network. I have yet to set up what I needed to so I can actively promote my book. I published a book, but being unable to actively get it in the hands of the readers, I feel like I have failed.

To make matters even more complicated, I am attempting to get back to the healthy state I was in before all the medication complicated things. A couple years back, I lost 40 pounds. I was damn proud of myself. I worked hard and the hard work paid off. The medication had one very miserable side effect... it could cause weight gain. Suddenly, I find myself bloating back into my former self and can do nothing to stop it. No amount of exercise and no amount of healthy eating seems to combat the medication's effects. So I stopped taking them, but I still can't get back on track.
working out, getting back in shape

I have been told to ignore the numbers on the scale. Honestly, while seeing a good number on the scale is always nice, I don't care about the numbers. The problem is in my clothing... or the lack of clothing. In the process of gaining the weight back, my body has reshaped. Even my fat clothes don't fit right. I feel like I have a turtle neck of fat around my neck that is slowly choking me to death.

Ironically, I know the problem. I will never be able to get back to were I was and were I want to be until I stop stressing. But for someone who has always lived in the fast lane, how do you do that?

They say give up some of the tasks that I deem as "needed" to get done. They said to delegate some of the stressors to someone else. But how is that fair? I can't give away all my duties to sit on the couch eating bon bons while watching soap operas. Not to mention, that won't get me back on track health-wise either.

Yet, this is what I am confronted with: Making the decision of what I need to give up so I can stop stressing about everything. Or maybe, I can just get a 27 hour day.

Thursday, August 1, 2013


It takes some real thick skin to be a writer.

My skin is not really that thick, so when I read something negative that directly impacts me, I want to go crawl in a corner and die. I try not to let it bother me. I even say it out loud, hoping it will even force me to believe it. Yet, all I am doing is lying to myself.

As I sit, these negative statements come to my mind and they make me wonder.

I wonder why?

Why did they target me?

It isn't as if I know these people. Or maybe I do. I couldn't really tell if I do if they hide behind the tag anonymous.
anonymous, hiding behind the computer screen

I have been thinking about this for the better part of a week when I came across a negative review for my book on Amazon. I took it with a grain of salt. They said it was depressing. I guess that is partially what happens when your intention is to make people cry. (And the only reason that was one of my goals was because I wanted people to feel the emotion.)

Does this look like a romance novel?
It doesn't even come close. So if that is
what you are looking for, look
somewhere else!
The first bad review made me realize people were coming to my book thinking it was going to be Harlequin Romance. Now I am not really sure why people are confusing it for romance. It is actually more of a drama with a few romantic parts possibly tossed in for good health.

Yet the part that bugs me is actually the anonymous part.

Are you to afraid to stand behind your words?

Signing something as anonymous is the cowards way of leaving a review. In fact, if you can't verify who you are, you have no right to even leave a review. I finally got over it, convincing myself that this person is entitled to hide behind their computer screen, especially since a positive review had already trumped the negative one meaning it wasn't the first thing people saw.

Call it weird, but the major reason I was concerned about the bad review was because it was the first thing everyone else would see.

Well, today, my husband messaged me. He had finally finished my book. (While he had an idea what was going on, he never read the completed version.) He even said it made him cry and he left a glowing review. (To clarify, I didn't ask him to leave a review because I thought he would be unfair. After all, his wife wrote it so chances of a bad review were slim. But he left one anyway.)

When I went to read his review, I saw another negative review.


This one, while at least they didn't leave an anonymous review, was just as bad. It was a personal attack, calling me "special."

So, why is it that the majority of people who leave reviews are always so negative? Why are they trying to cut down an author who has obviously put themselves out there?

At this point, it doesn't matter. I reported their feedback as inappropriate. After all, the comment they left seemed more like a personal attack and that should not be tolerated.

I swear, as a writer, a person needs thick skin.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I Promised I Would Blog Today...

I am not really sure what I got myself into. Yesterday I publicly announced that today was the day I might actually have time to blog.

What I should have done was keep my mouth shut.

lips sealed, close your mouth, stop talking

Time to blog? More like I should have taken the day off. My mind is numb. My brain is dead. I don't even really have anything to say.

Yet, I feel obligated.

Maybe you have noticed - maybe you haven't - but I have been MIA a lot recently. I could list a variety of excuses.

gardening, garden explosion, feed me seymour
Look at all those flowers!

  • I went back to school.
  • I was fending off the zombie apocalypse
  • My garden came alive and kept screaming "Feed Me Seymour!"
  • I was doing undercover work for the FBI
  • I took up residency in a mental hospital

Ah... but did any of that really happen. Sure it did. I did return to school and the last class was a beast. Doesn't help that it is accelerated. I was fending off some kind of infection... I am not sure if it was the zombie apocalypse. My garden did explode... with zucchini. I promise you they aren't talking though. I can't speak about my FBI mission. And I really need a vacation so maybe I should take up residency in a mental hospital.

What matters most though is that I actually blogged today.

Did you learn anything from it?

Was I remotely funny?

Will I ever be able to get back into the groove again?

Ah - only time will tell! Now I am off to go see that doctor. 

Residency here I come!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

He Forgot to Use the Safe Word!

Last week my husband and I were in Walmart picking up some medication. I had done all my research thanks to WebMD, and I was sure I was having an allergic reaction.

However, that is not necessarily what it looked like. My eye was swollen. It looked like I had been punched in the face, at least from a distance.

People were giving us strange looks. I giggled innocently as I knew my husband was probably being cursed by those who didn't have a clue what was going on. It was obvious. The look on their faces said it loud and clear.... "Really? What kind of man beats his wife and takes her out in public?"

With a face that looked like mine, I needed something to make me laugh. My husband was irritating me, constantly commenting on my inability to "leave it alone!"

Revenge was mine.

"Seriously! It is really starting to hurt. You really shouldn't hit me so hard!" I said with a smile on my face. The couple in front of us had their back turned to us, but had just given my husband the evil eye.

"Maybe next time you should learn to listen the first time."

By the time we got to the check out person, the couple in front of us was walking away as fast as they could, probably in search of a police officer to come rescue the Damsel in Distress. (Who am I kidding... this is Walmart!)

This gave us a quick laugh and we proceeded on home to lather my face with antihistamine gel. Relief was in the forcast.....

Yeah right. This is called Karma. That was last week.

The beginning of this week I started off with my left eye completely swollen shut. This was after a visit to the Urgent Care 2 days earlier and what I thought was finally the road to recovery.

I can barely see anything. My hearing is almost entirely gone as well from this severe sinus infection. With my eyesight fading, I am starting to think the only sense I might soon be left with is common sense.... and I am not entirely sure I had that to begin with.

This is obviously Karma from last week'
s short prank.

I thought it was funny. Most people should know that anybody in an actual abusive relationship, would not be in public joking about it. But maybe I shouldn't have been joking about such a serious topic anyway.

What can I say - I am an insensitive asshole. Go ahead and judge me.

This is my payback. Even though I have never been in a fight before... I look like I got a blow right to the face. My right eye is following.

Guess what, next time Karma wants to fight I am taking the first blow.

And until then, I am just going to use the excuse that my husband forgot the safe word....

Monday, July 1, 2013

Music Monday: You're so Vain

I never really considered myself a vain person. Not that I thought I was ugly or anything. But then again, who really does?

swollen eye, allergic reaction
My left eye is almost
completely swollen shut. It
looks like I got into a fight!
Guess what? Lately I realized how truly vain I am...I can't stop looking in the mirror!

All it took was for me to go through some medical issue I can't explain which causes some severe rash to cover my face and swell up my eye.

Believe me, this is an improvement to the oozing scab from last week that will probably leave a permanent scar on my face.

It has already been 3 visits to Urgent Care and the doctors have no clue what is going on. I thought it was an allergic reaction. Now I just think the zombie apocalypse is starting with me!

That is why today's song that is stuck in my head for Music Monday is....

Carly Simon with "You're So Vain!"

Hope you enjoy... I am off to the Emergency Room. This really is turning out to be a crappy summer!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Music Monday: Let's Get Physical

It's been awhile since I did a Music Monday. What can I say - I have been busy and I have had way too much stuff going on.

However, I have to get this ear worm out otherwise it will continue to bug me! Therefore, this week I decided to highlight Olivia Newton-John's "Let's Get Physical" video.

Sorry for the torture, but I have a good reason.

Most people who know me, know that I am obsessed with working out. Lately, I have been slacking. It could be the medication I was prescribed. It made me very lethargic and drained every little bit of energy out of me. It sucked.

Well, over the last two months, the medicine took it's final toll on me and I gave it up. I know my body better than anybody else does and frankly, I didn't think the medication was worth the side effects. It caused me to put on close to 30 pounds.

To me, this is not only scary but downright depressing. I could actually watch the pounds crawl on. I could see my skin stretch and I could feel my clothes no longer fitting me right. Yet, it didn't matter because even if I tried to combat the problem, it didn't work.

Back in 2011, I lost 45 pounds. I have done it before and now it is time to do it again. It is time to get strict and it is time to get picky. I want to feel comfortable in my body again. So I started P90X again. I will probably be complaining about how sore I am, but it is going to be well worth it. After all, I know this program is what gave me results last time. And if I have to use this blog as a resource to stay accountable, so be it. I need to get into shape... preferable something other than round.

working out, getting healthy, lifting weights,
Welcome back Crazy Workout Lady!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I am starting the zombie apocalypse!

I just can't seem to win!

I am sick again. It seems like I have the worse immune system ever. It all started out with an allergic reaction. I have never been allergic to anything before... yet last month it started... small and itchy.

Last week it spread. 

I never learn though. I can't leave things alone. So I messed with it. I itched it. (Because it felt good. And when things itch, you scratch!)

What did I end up with... a face that looks like I was wearing glasses and got punched in the face!
surprise, accessorizing
I accessorized
to distract people from my face!

Don't worry. I won't show you because I don't want to scare you! Luckily it has stayed on one side of my face, so I could easily get a mask like the Phantom of the Opera.

So as if I wasn't miserable enough... then I got a cold. It started off small. A little scratchiness in my throat.

Then my voice disappeared. (No applauding - I don't talk that much!)

My noise started running. (I would run too if I had the opportunity!)

My sinuses are clogged and if I take a deep breath I seem to launch into a coughing fit!

This morning when I woke my face had scabbed over where the allergic reaction was and it was leaking, my eyes were watery and crusted shut, and I couldn't stop coughing. I felt miserable and what should be getting better each day, isn't even close to improving. (I only share this disgusting description so you too can share in my misery and feel sorry for me!)

That means there is only one logical conclusion.

The zombie apocalypse has started...              and it started with me!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Go BIG or Go Home!

I have a problem...

I usually get something set in my head and I want to do it. The problem is, I can't and won't start out small. I have to go all the way. I have to make an investment. If I don't have everything I want, I won't be a success.

I did this once with sewing. Got all the Dummy manuals, got the tomato looking pin cushion. I even asked and got a real live sewing machine for Christmas one year (which is, by the way, sitting in the box - only been used a few select times, most of which ended up being a jammed up mess!) I spent more than 100 dollars on patterns and fabrics and really cool specialty scissors.

The obsession to be the next best seamstress and make awesome homemade clothes didn't last long. Soon I moved on to crocheting... That didn't last long either but I did make a rather frumpy looking scarf once.

I also did the same think with crafts. Bought all the supplies to make my own jewelry. I intended on wearing it and selling it. Instead, I gave most of it away and threw the rest in the box were they continue to get into a tangled mess. Bought a bunch of stamps. Thought it would be fun to make homemade cards and stamp stuff. It really wasn't my thing.

I also can't forget about the time I decided to explore my musical talents. I love music. I used to play the clarinet in high school. So naturally, I thought with all this extra time on my hands, I would be able to teach myself how to play guitar.

playing guitar, rocking, acoustic guitar
I am pretty good at pretending that I am rocking out!

After months of not being able to figure out the correct way to strum, some really sore fingers, and constant complaints about my boobs getting in the way, I gave up and moved on to Piano. (I am happy to say I am having a more positive experience with this one, and have almost figured out how to play Fur Elise!)

This year - it is gardening.

I have no idea how to garden. In fact, looking at my record, I have probably killed more plants than I have been able to grow. I once treated a hanging strawberry plant with Raid to get rid of the ants. The ants no longer bothered my plant... we didn't get strawberries either.

So this year I am going to prove my black thumb wrong. On a positive note, I got my kids to keep checking on it for me! Out of the four of us, we should at least come up with one thing that is edible.
gardening, healthy eating, planting, vegetables
The kids are so excited. They can't wait
for stuff to start growing!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Are You A Bra? A Question of Support

The desperate and insecure writer in me is trying to climb out...

I can't help it though. I am a curious individual. I ask questions. I seek answers. I talk about everything. I can only assume this is the reason I enjoy writing.

It allows me to express myself. I can just blurt stuff out on paper that comes to mind. When I talk, I usually try to think before the words are formed. I hold back a lot.... not when I am writing.

So this leads me to where I am today... thinking about my book, Mother's Day. Thinking about how to get it into the hands of readers. Thinking how to convince people to spread the word. Wondering if it is good enough. There are people out there that have told me it is great. I didn't pay them to say it either.

I still question it though. Is it great because they know me... or did they really enjoy it. Did they get an emotional response? Are they telling their friends and family about the last book they read? Are they passing it on.

I am new to this whole promoting myself. What it has done has brought up massive amounts of questions. Questions about my supporters, questions about spreading the word, just questions in general.

Freelance artists struggle. No body knows who they are and they have to work insanely hard to get a buzz going. It is those supporters who create that buzz... and it is one thing that made me realize what kind of supporter I am.

I am a supporter of the freelance artists. 
I am a bra - if you must.

Misfit Heights, unfettered entertainment, zombie puppet musical
Anytime I know a person who has accomplished a goal they can brag about, I get excited. I want to support them. I want to brag about them. I want to tell the world that I knew them way back when....

When I found out an old friend from high school made a movie, I couldn't wait for it to be released so I could see it. I immediately went to their Facebook page Misfit Heights and not only "Liked" the page, but also spammed my friends with it. It is a zombie puppet musical. How can it possibly get any better than that? Sure, it might not be everybody's thing. It is a small niche to say the least. But it was great and the fact is... I was supporting a fellow peer from High School.
If you want to know more - look to your left. I got him on the sidebar and I highly encourage you to check it out!

Soul Finding, Fantasy fiction bookAs a writer, I have also run into others as well who have jumped on the dream boat and accomplished a goal. One of my friends from Wisconsin, author C.L. Crowe, wrote the book Soul Finding. I have already
read it on my Kindle and I am anxiously awaiting the second book's release. I also plan on purchasing a hard copy of the book just so I can have her sign it the next time I see her. I won't even go into how mad I am at her for publishing her book first! I guess she won fair and square though, so I can't hold it over her head too much. She will just have to buy me lunch next time we get together since she has got a few months on me for the publishing gig.

Obviously because of what I do, I have run into many talented artists out there. Melanie from Scribbles and Smiles also just published the book "Make Happiness Happen!" It is a quick read packed full of inspiration. I was so excited to see it since her accomplish this goal since she was one of my biggest supporters and fans during National Novel Writing Month.

My friend Vicki over at Laugh Lines was recently featured in a book called the "Life Well Blogged," which I was lucky enough to receive a complimentary copy. What I have read so far has me rolling with laughter.

Then of course their is Cyndi over at Pictimilitude, who is going to take the world by storm with her works of art. One day I will have one of her pictures hanging on my wall.

As writers, there are several different forms of support. Marie Landry gave me the opportunity to have my first experience at being a Beta Reader for her book "Waiting For The Storm." I was really excited to read it and give her my personal thoughts. It was a definite read and it made me curious about the other books she has written as well. Upon completion of beta reading, I bought all her books. I love supporting other artists.

Naturally, I can't forget about Julie DeNeen, form Life According to Julie, who was the initial push into my blogging. Who has always been around to push others to write what they feel and expose themselves. She is honest and doesn't hold anything back and that is something to admire in today's world. She already wrote two books which I couldn't put down - "Wanted" and "Writing Through The Chaos." She has a million other things on her plate, including a blogging consultation business through Fabulous Blogging. She has been a big inspiration for almost every writer and blogger I have met in the digital world, and no one has a negative thing to say about her. Honestly, even on those days when I have been busy and it seems like I am not around, I still quietly stalk her just because the stuff she has to say is so refreshing.

girl fight, boxing gloves, fighting
Last, but definitely not least, (because she will beat me up otherwise!), I want to mention Terrye from The Adventures of a Misplaced Alaskan. I hear she is jumping on the band wagon to write a book as well. She won't tell me any more details about it, so I won't dwell about not being able to gossip. However, when it comes to support, she is someone you want on your side and she is a treasure to have in your life. Every time I was feeling down and wanted to call it quits, I would say something and she would tell me to shut it. It really made me feel better!

There are also some other key people who are responsible for some  great products. Shelby McKee, owner and founder of  Keysocks, has been one of my biggest supporters. I was one of the first writers to get the inside scoop on this product. These socks are perfect for any woman who like to wear their shoes, and their socks too. This was an ingenious idea and I talk about them like they were mine. Reality is, I just want to share the love.

Yoga Sandals are another product I stand by and want to mention.  The philosophy behind this product is one I can stand behind and truly believe in. I love the concept of these shoes, since they help with foot and knee problems. I love the positive outlook this business portrays. And I also can't fail to mention one of their employees, my friend Liz, is also one of the people who helped me with the cover of my book. One thing is for sure though, I love spread the word about great quality products like this.

bras, support

Who are your bras?

Overall, I learned there are people in your life who are like bras. They support you and pick you up. They go out of their way to tell you how proud they are of you, the will spend their last dime just to buy your latest piece of work. They don't do this because of it's quality, because it doesn't even matter what it is, but because they want the bragging rights. They want to show you off.

For instance, my mom has already bought 3 of my books. My Grandma has to buy another one because she refuses to share. My sister finished the book in less than 24 hours of receiving it, and I might also add that she was one of the very first to buy it. Now that is support.

After talking to one of the local bookstores, I started feeling the love of supporters everywhere. This man, who has never met me or seen me or even read my book, was excited about my accomplishment. This excitement stemmed from me being a local self-published author. He told me how to make connections - how some of these people will become the greatest supporters just because I am local. It got me excited.

It also got me thinking - who are your supporters? Do you know who they are? Do they brag about you, or do they stay silent? Are some of them a surprise?

I got curious... so I actually asked. And yes - I am taking names. In fact, I would love for them to share a picture of themselves with my book. Why? So I can do a contest and one lucky winner will get something from me and they will also get the opportunity to send my book to a person of their choice. But more on that later. Right now I just want to know who has supported me.

These supporters that create a buzz, and when you are a new artist, that is what you need. You need to create a buzz. So here is my chance to tell everybody who has supported me how much I appreciate you.

Thank you to all of those who have bought my book and shared it with your friends. 

Thank you to all of those have created a buzz 
about "Mother's Day!"

Monday, June 3, 2013

Music Monday: I'm So Excited

I know it has been awhile since I have done a Music Monday post, but yesterday I got this song stuck in my head and I just couldn't get it out. I thought I would share...

There is a big reason why this song is stuck in my head, and frankly, if you could see me right now, you would notice that I haven't stopped jumping up and down since yesterday afternoon. I walked out on a ledge and took a chance. I really wasn't sure what was going to happen, so I walked into a local book store more nervous than a person afraid of heights jumping out of a plane and I asked a question.

"I am a new self-published author and I was wondering, how do I get my book on your shelves?"

Instead of being turned away or told to buy a book and do some research, I was given a phone number by one of the store owners and told how excited they get to promote local artists.


To make it even better, this gentleman used to do marketing for Borders and gave me all sorts of ideas on what I need to do to market myself and my book. How far I take this is completely up to me, however, as any writer knows, information is gold and I don't think I could ever repay this gentleman for the insight he has given me in the short 15 minutes I talked to him.

So I better get to it. I got some marketing to do while I dance away to the song playing in my head. I couldn't have planned this out better if I tried!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Where did the year go?

Today is the last day of school for my daughters. It seems like only yesterday school was starting... now we are getting ready for summer.

Here is Southern California, the temps are starting to crawl up into the triple digits. It is hot.

I don't do well in the heat.

Our pool isn't ready yet.

Today I got burnt in less than 2 minutes.

The kids are probably going to drive me mad...

Guess just because it is summer doesn't mean things really change. At least next Monday I will get to sleep in.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Finding my Brand

Writing a book was the easy part....

Mother's Day, book, winged heart in child's hands
Never thought I would say that in my life. After what seemed like forever, I finally hit the "Approve" button and my book was out in the big, wide, evil, cruel world for review.

Ok - it was no longer for review. It was up for grabs for anybody who was curious enough to spend a few hours reading it and a few bucks buying it... but that also meant it was up for critique. People could love it - or they could hate it!

What would people say?

I was so nervous....

Sure, we all have people who will never fail to buy what ever you write regardless of how bad it is or how good it is. It is the strangers we have to be careful of. We need to wrap our hearts and our minds with a Teflon coating so we don't get burned.

And that was when I ran into a wall.....

I was so excited to have finally hit publish. I knew I wasn't going to become an instant millionaire... and probably maybe not even a best selling author... at least yet. What I wasn't aware of, was how hard it would be to actually get someone to buy my book.

A few short lonely books later, I was wondering where were the critiques? The people slamming me under the bus because they hated it. Where was the love? The people who told everybody about it until they were blue in the face.

I guess that means you have to sell some books.

Now don't get me wrong. This is not a pity party. I have already sold a handful of books and the people who have invested the time in it to read Mother's Day, can't seem to put it down. So it must be good. At least that is what I am getting from the feedback.

The problem is, I need to brand it. I need to make people want to buy the book. I need them to realize they can't live another day without purchasing my book. I need to find a way to convince them there is something in it for them.

Frankly, how the hell do I do that?

If you would like a copy of Mother's Day, the book I completed for Nanowrimo, click here for the paperback. If you would like the Kindle version, click here.

Friday, May 24, 2013

I Have Nothing To Say

It seems I have used up my creative energy.

I have been actively trying to blog more, but it isn't working. I can't focus. I don't know what to write. So I sit and ponder. I play some games. I try to think so more. And then I realize I wasted all day and have nothing to show for it.

cleaning, mopping, clean houseI have even used cleaning as a means to escape my head, hoping to come up with something exciting and new to write about.

That hasn't worked either.

If it did, this post might be a whole lot more entertaining than it already is. It might actually have substance. You might make to the end and think, "Now that was an AHA moment and I am glad I stayed!"

But I can't promise that. In fact, I think I am going to go clean. But my house is already clean so I can't even do that. So needless to say, I sit here with nothing to say.

Yet here is the problem. I know why my lack of writing is plaguing me. It is because I have a lot to say. I just don't know how to say it.

telling secrets, lots of stuff to say, how do I tell you
I have lots of things to say. I am just not sure
how to go about saying it.
I want to talk about what is irritating me, I want to talk about my book, I want to talk about my lack of motivation for my workouts, I want to talk about how my medication has made me fat, I want to talk about how I still don't trust doctors so I stopped taking my medication because I think the weight is worse for me than what I needed the medication for, I want to talk about the sleep study I had which probably won't give any results because it was the best night of sleep I had gotten in months, I want to talk about the end of school, I want to talk about the lack of bus transportation that is already causing me stress wondering how I am going to time both kids getting to school at the right time, I want to talk about how my son just dropped a whole bag of M&M's on the floor and it is driving me crazy because I know I will find a missing one
sometime down the road, I want to talk about my new iPhone 5 and how Suri doesn't tolerate you swearing at here, I want to talk about how irritated I am that Emily Owens, MD. was cancelled, I want to talk about how I taught myself Fur Elise on the Piano, I want to talk about the potential of a zombie apocalypse, I want to talk about how life really would be more enjoyable if it was a musical, and I also want to talk about how much I am missing my family and friends back home.

See... even when I have nothing to say, I seem to really have a lot to say. I just can't seem to get it all out. And until I really get out what is plaguing me, I will continue to feel like I have nothing to say.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Music Monday: Whistle While You Work

Today is a busy one. Not that there is ever a day that goes by that I am not busy. I got a massive amount of scrubbing and cleaning to do... after all, it has been neglected over the last few months. I have homework to do; end of school activities; washing my hair; working out; picking my nose and picking my blog post. Mostly though, I have to start coming up with marketing strategies for my book Mother's Day.

If you thought writing a book was hard, try getting the word to spread like wildfire. So, as I step into the beginnings of the marketing process, I am just going to have to Whistle While I Work... seems like the perfect song for Music Monday!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Cool in the Pool

It has not been cool lately. In fact, it is creeping dangerously close to the triple digits. We aren't even out of May yet....

Yes... I am well aware that it is Southern California. I am also well aware that it is a dry heat. However, so is an oven and you don't see me sticking my head in there.

Needless to say... I am looking forward to putting the pool up this coming weekend!

cool in the pool, swimming, pool set up
Help! I can't swim!!!
If you would like to participate in Wordless Wednesday, check out my friend Cyndi at Pictimilitude for submission guidelines.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


I thought I would stop by and say hi.

I know, it has been a while. Sometimes I even wondered if anybody missed me. But I have a good excuse as to why I haven't been around. It's a darn good excuse.

I wrote a book!

Let me tell you, it was hard work. I spent hours staring at the computer editing until my eyes went blurry. There were days when I would wear the same clothes... just so the laundry didn't pile up. I don't remember the last logical conversation I had with my husband, my kids might be figments of my imagination, and soon it might no longer be an undiagnosed mad woman state, since I have nearly lost my mind!

I am sure it will be worth it in the end. Actually, I am not sure, I know it will be! After all, my book is published and available for anybody to read. Hope you take the chance to check it out by clicking here.

So what's next?

That is the big question I have as well. I fear I might actually have too much time on my hands that I don't know what to do with myself.

Naw... that will never happen. I have kids and summer is just around the corner.

Sadly, time will always be short because I like to stay busy. But now that I have cleared off a really big task, I will have more time for my family, my schoolwork, and my chores. I will be back to blogging and catching up with my fellow bloggers as well.

Ok - so who am I kidding. I am already working on my next book! This one is going to be about zombies. No worries though - I haven't put myself under a strict deadline yet!

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

My Phone Call With Google

Google and I have been fighting.

funny workout picture, working out. strengthening my muscles
I have been working out. Google better watch out!
I am ready for them!
I have never fought like this with Google before, in fact, I would rather stay on good terms with them. After all, Google is kind of like the parent and I, as a blogger, am like the child. Whatever Google says goes and I am stuck with their decision.

So - you are probably wondering what went happened?

Well, at the end of March, I woke up to the nastygram saying there was invalid activity going on with my account.


I was nearly in shock. I thought I was going to cry. And then I remember, I don't really care because my writing is about my writing, not necessarily the money I make from my blog. So if you are wondering why I have been absent lately, it has nothing to do with my Google Adsense ban.

Anyway, I have tried to be nice and calm about the situation, appealing to the Google Gods. Only, it doesn't matter what I say or do, I just get a canned message back.

Do they think I am stupid??

If you message me back within 4 hours, I can pretty much guess you did nothing to evaluate my account.

This of course went on through the course of several different appeals. I know they say one shot is all you have, but I like to be annoying. So, what does it take for me to sit down and write them a letter every single day until I get some attention. Not a whole lot of time, in comparison of where I could waste it elsewhere. (Do you notice how much I update Facebook?)

Well, I got sick of remembering to write to them, and I got sick of trying to reword the facts so it sounds like I am coming up with new evidence. However, I don't have any new evidence. I don't know what might have caused them to see invalid activity.

money, spare change, change, counting change
Good-bye spare change. I probably
won't get to spend you anymore.
This is what I do know though. At the beginning of March, I started to actively promote my blog. Suddenly, I was overwhelmed by the sheer amount of spam comments coming in. I turned on Captcha to deter the
spam. My traffic tanked. Right after I did that, Google took away my account.

Days later, I found out my writings have been being copied on other websites. So yeah - how happy does that make me? I can't make money off of my stuff, but other people can copy it and at least make money. Google frowns at duplicate content.

However, it doesn't matter how much I study the stats, I can't seem to find anything that jumps out as unusual.

And Google... well they are equivalent to a parent saying... "Because I said so."

They are a bully. That is really what it comes down to. If any of the small guys start making money, they quickly do an update to change those numbers. If people click on your ads, even though the ads are matched toward what they should be interested in, Google will call you out for fraud. Why - because God forbid if the advertisers have to actually pay for their advertising!

So as a small fish in a big ocean, I am the little guy, barely making pennies, and they choose me to lay down their wrath. So while I actually care very little about the money, I have this problem of wanting to know.

So right now, I am sitting on the phone, calling Google. I waited on hold for 30 minutes before accidentally hanging up the first time. The second time....
sitting on hold, phone call, waiting
If I knew this was going to be such an exciting
date, I might have gotten up and tried to
look presentable. 

.... well, I have already been on hold for an hour and a half.

What can I say... I don't give up easily!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Brain Drain: Online Education Does NOT Equal Easy

Many of you (ok - maybe only my imaginary friends) may have been wondering where I have been hiding lately.

Truth is, I haven't been hiding. I have been right in front of you this whole time. However, I have recently decided to go back to school to get my degree, and let me tell you, it is exhausting work.

As if I wasn't busy before. Now, not only do I still have all my wifely and motherly duties, and my nearly impossible deadline set to have my book Mother's Day to be published May 12, 2013. (Yes - I know - publishing a book called Mother's Day on Mother's Day. I couldn't resist!), I have added a "fast-paced, no hold backs" online course to my full plate.

clock, time, never enough timeI have often times heard many people describe online courses as easy. Being that this isn't the first time I have taken an online course, I already knew what I was getting into. But when you are actually doing it, you forget how much time is actually used up by the sheer amount of reading, researching, and writing you must do. In fact, online courses are actually harder because you need to be more accountable for your work, and even teaching yourself.

I know finishing my degree is the right thing to do. I only wish I would have started it sooner, so I didn't have to waste some of my valuable Veteran's Benefits that will expire before I get a chance to completely exhaust them. But in the end, I know finishing my schooling will be the right thing for me.

Getting back into the swing of things has been difficult. It is the first class I have taken in several years. I am not used to studying, I am not used to writing thesis statements, and I certainly not used to those exciting textbooks with 300 pages worth of material to memorize.

Brain drain, brain fart, tired brain
When your brain seems drained,
even those tasks that often seemed
simple become difficult, like writing
a blog post.
I have been falling behind in my blogging, I have been falling behind in my online networking, I have just fallen behind.

So, if you have been wondering where I've been lately, I am still around. But I have found between my book and schooling and family, most of my time has been sucked up. Not to mention, after all the mental tasks I have had to do lately, my brain is drained.

Even writing this blog post was difficult!

Just know, I will be back and I will be smarter. Ok - maybe just more sarcastic due to being tired. But hey - at least that means I've gotten something out of school.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Words Mean Everything

As many of you may already know, I have been working hard (or hardly working) on my book that I have planned to release to people everywhere on May 12, 2013. On top of that, I have also returned to school... mainly because I want to make it sound like I am smart on my author page. (No one said it had to be a good reason!)

Needless to say, I realized I was coming up on crunch time. Between my book, my blog, and my school work, I knew I needed to get cracking.

So yesterday, I decided to open my book again to make edits from the suggestions of my beta readers. It is a tedious process. I feel like I am looking at a million computer screens and trying to condense them into one valid document.
editing, working, computer work, laptop
Working between a printed copy and a
computer copy is enough to make anyone
want to take a nap!

Ok - it really isn't that bad. But I do have to keep looking from hard copy to laptop. Pain in the butt.

And it's a daunting task. It might even be more daunting then writing the damn book. After all, I didn't know how far I was going until I got there. Now, as I sit on page 35... I noticed there is still 378 pages left.

That number 413 keeps flashing at me. 

Once I got into the swing of things, it wasn't really all that bad. And the reality is, I only need to do 22 pages a day to be ready for the final read through on May 1st!

But meanwhile, it can't be all work and no play. That is when I started to realize how funny it is to look back at my work with a fresh pair of eyes. After all, when it comes to your own work sometimes it can be hard to pick out things that are just wrong.

In this case... I realized that my main character likes to run around commando, sans undies, freebuffing, going regimental.... although it wasn't really my intention.

The reality is, when you are writing, you need to describe everything. In this case, I would describe her as finishing up her shower and throwing on a pair of pants. Most people would assume she is wearing her undergarments, but I can't assume here. So, I have to read it like it is. She doesn't wear underwear.

I don't know about you... but I think my main character would be a lot more comfy in her undies!

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Theta Healing Rythm For Finding Your Perfect Weight

I have a confession. I am addicted to Self Help books, especially those that deal with other, lesser known modalities which may not be the norm in today's culture, at least the one I know.

Since I am always on the search for ways to be healthier, when I found the book "Theta Healing Rhythm for Finding Your Perfect Weight," by Vianna Stibal, I knew I had found a winner. It was a fast an easy read which kept my attention right away.

weight loss, Theta Healing Rhythm, health, spiritual journeyThis book wasn't just about losing weight; it is about a journey within your mind. At first I was looking for a the gimmick it was trying to sell me on how to quickly lose those last few stubborn pounds, but what I found was something which has truly been able to turn my whole thought process around.

The book, in a nutshell is about finding your perfect weight by changing your beliefs. Remember though, it says nothing about being skinny or being fat. Whatever you are comfortable with is perfectly fine. The lesson in this book is found a little bit deeper. It is about finding out what kind of person you are, and loving that person regardless of what size you are.

It is common sense to realize you can't lose weight without limiting your food intake and without participating in some kind of exercise. But what if you could trick your mind and your body to thinking everything you do for it is something beneficial and good? That is what Theta Healing is about. Yet my first intention of reading this book was debunking a myth. After all, how do you lose weight by just thinking about it?

This book itself does not sit alone, even though it can be used by itself. Personally, I think belief work takes time to get used to, and this is a little on the advanced side leaving me confused at the very beginning. However, by the time I got to the end, I felt comfortable in my abilities to be able to perform a small level of belief work myself. However, author does have other books available if you would like more information on the subject.

Even alone, this book can be useful. It opens your mind up and really makes you think. It teaches you how to love yourself, love the food that you put in your body, and even trick your body into thinking you did exercise while driving in the car. Amazing? Right?

It will take time, but the power of the mind is a powerful one. How many times have you told yourself that you gain 5 pounds just looking at that brownie? Well now that you have implanted that thought into your mind, chances are good it is going to happen. But if you tell your body you can have that treat and not feel guilty, it probably won't effect you. If you tell your body to reap all the nutrients from the food you are about to eat, your body will do what it should by taking advantage of what you put in your body.

Of course, everything is better in moderation, but this book will help you get along with your body and your feelings toward food.

For me it became a personal journey. All the negative talk I have had in my head for years, has finally found a way out. I am not a new and transformed person just yet, but this book really made me think. I realize I have a lot of work to do on myself so I can become happy with who I am. And ultimately, it isn't really about weight loss at all. It is about the person inside me.

Who would have ever thought I could have pulled so much out of a book looking for a quick weight loss fix?

So if you are feeling a little down on yourself, this is a must read. It made me think hard about what I wanted out of life and let me dive in a litter deeper into my own personal feelings. But I will admit, if you are just looking for the quick weight loss fix, this isn't for you. Reading this book will not take off the pounds itself. That is something you will have to do on your own.

If you would like to purchase this book, click here to be redirected to Hay House, Inc.

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from Hay House Publishing for this review. The opinion in this review is unbiased and reflects my honest judgment of the product.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Elevator Music

You know the music. It plays in the background while you wait.
elevator, elevator music, open elevator

You wait and wait and wait until you get to the floor your looking for. The music is corny, sometimes jazzy, and usually not the type of music you would find yourself jamming to while in the car. Sometimes it plays the occasional pop song, but not to often.

So... I just wanted to let everybody know that due to family being around for the weekend, I will be kind of busy.

So for your enjoyment... Here is some Elevator Music for you to listen to while you wait for me to come back!!

Hope everybody has a great weekend!

Thursday, March 28, 2013

My Epic Blog Post

I really wanted to write something epic today for my blog.

Here is the problem though. I am kind of a perfectionist. My parents are going to be here tomorrow and it doesn't matter how clean my house is, I can still find more to clean.

So that is what I have been doing all day. Yet, I still feel this urge to write an epic blog post, so even though I am running short on time here goes nothing...


Yep, that is my blog post for the day. Hope you enjoyed it and it inspired you! And if you didn't, here is a picture of me trying to get you with my black sticky hands of goo!

black sticky hands, crazy person, monster

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Cleaning

My parents are coming to town. They are taking the long drive from Wisconsin all the way to California. I know I am crazy enough to do it... my parents are following suite.

What does that mean to me....

I need to get serious about my cleaning!

cleaning, mopping, tile floors, wringing out mop
Cleaning up and getting the house ready for company!
Ok - it isn't that we are slobs. And the mess that you do see is the results of having three kids anyway. But this is what I do know. They have never seen my house before. So even if it kills me, my house will smell and look like sunshine and roses.

Until they get here. And then I will blame the mess on having company!

So if you notice I do a bit of a disappearing act for awhile... just know I will be back. I am currently visiting with the people who had crazy!

And if you would like to participate in Wordless Wednesday, check out Pictimilitude for further instructions!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Captcha - I am Not a Robot

Blogging is a lot of work!

As if it wasn't hard enough coming up with something to write each and every single time, then you have to add in Search Engine Optimization (so you can be found), and then you have to put in some pretty pictures (originals work best!) and then you have to actually write something worth reading.

If you weren't already exhausted, and if time is on your side, you should aslo try and make an appearance and comment on all the other wonderful and your favorite bloggers out there!

Yesterday I was pretty excited. I looked at my blogger stats and I have hit my highest views ever! I was particularly excited because I have had a lot of personal stuff going on lately so I have been focusing mostly on my blog posts and hoping that my lack of reading didn't effect my traffic too much. I wanted to know that people stopped by because they liked what I wrote, not because I commented on their post.

I was doing a happy dance. I was thinking.... "Wow - people like me!"

And then I realized my blogger stats just don't add up to my Google Analytics stats. Depression hits! And it wasn't just a couple numbers off, it was by 100s.

As I cried myself to sleep last night, rolling back and forth in the fetal position, I had to come to a very drastic and life altering decision. What was I going to do about this misleading type readings? Was I going to let the numbers rule my mood?

crying, depression, throwing a fit, I can't believe it
Admit it! As a blogger sometimes you are ruled
by the numbers!

A lot of the difference in numbers is probably because of the overwhelming amount of spam I have been receiving on my blog lately. Not only has it been filling up my email inbox, but it is also looking weird to those who comment after a spam comment which made no sense!

Well, I didn't want to play that game anymore. I wanted to see more accurate results. So, I turned my Captcha back on. Therefore my true readers will show through and the spammers will not get a free backlink!

Anybody who knows me knows how much Captcha irritates me. I hate it. As a human I barely understand what the heck they are writing in that irritating box just to prove I am not a robot. Sometimes it takes me several attempts to figure out the doctorlike handwriting. I sit there screaming at my computer screen...
And now, after the constant bitching about other people leaving their Captcha on, I have decided to put mine  back on. Just temporarily. In the next month or so, I plan on buying my own domain. I am currently researching it. And then I will install a plug-in that will allow comments without all the hassle, but also without all the spam.

So I hope this doesn't discourage you from leaving a comment. I promise, I will try to write something epic. Something powerful. You know - just so you feel the need to leave a comment because my words have moved you in ways you have never been moved before.

Or maybe I will just continue to be sarcastic and snarky and inspirational and witty and irritating and whiney... meh what do I know. My numbers don't seem to be showing me shit anyway!

poop, shit, steaming pile of shit

Monday, March 25, 2013

Music Monday: YOLO

I am an internet junkie.

Even so, it doesn't mean I understand all Internet Acronyms. YOLO was one of those that I just nodded my head at when everybody was using it. I didn't want to ask what it meant for fear of looking stupid.


And now, I have openly admitted that for the longest time, I never even understood what it meant. (For those of you that are right there with me, it means You Only Live Once!)

The meaning behind it is kind of cool. It means get out there and do something. After all, why wait and why hide. Life is full of ups and downs - you should at least experience it! Go out on adventures. Dance like no one is watching. Sing like no one can hear. Don't dwell on what you don't have; Enjoy what you can do! It's about the experience. It's about enjoying your time with those that do the most to accent your life. It is living like tomorrow never comes. It really is a great motto.

Although I am never one to jump on the bandwagon so I still don't really use internet acronyms. I like to be clear with what I am saying... although I will admit to an overuse of the acronym LOL.

Last Saturday night we were over at a friend's house watching a movie. The second the movie came off, we got sucked into watching Saturday Night Live. I don't remember the last time I watched Saturday Night Live. It seems to go through phases where it is really funny and other times when it is really bad.

But if it wasn't for last Saturday, I would have never been introduced to the song from The Lonely Island, featuring Adam Levine, called "YOLO"

Don't skip this video! It is hilarious! Not to mention the perfect choice for Music Monday!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Blogging For Freedom

I wasn't going to post today. It wasn't because I didn't feel like it, it was because I had a lot of tasks that needed my attention.

laundry room, laundry, doing clothes
The dreaded laundry room!
Laundry needed to be finished and put away; I needed to run to the store (I actually mean it - since I don't have a car, my only option is to take the hike!); I needed to make dinner for a group of people tonight; I needed to make dessert (Ok - not need - that one was a want!); I needed to discuss ideas with my dad for their vacation to Southern California; I needed to pick the kids of from school; I did a couple haircuts; I needed to shower; I should have cleaned the kitchen; I should have cleaned the hamster cage; and there is probably a whole lot of should have's that I still didn't get too!

I don't consider blogging a "Should Have" or a "Need." Blogging is my freedom. It is one of the few ways I find I can sort the things out inside my crazy head. I do it because I want to, not because I need to.

Technically I could have skipped today. It wouldn't have mattered. I wonder if anybody would have noticed if I didn't show up to work. I usually don't blog on weekends unless I really have something on my mind. That is my break... and by the time Monday comes around, I am completely crazy from the lack of writing.

I blog purely for the joy of blogging. It is my mental release. Would it be nice if I could consider it a career?

Yes and No

Yes because that would mean I was making a good income and I could support my family off something I just love doing. Or maybe I could bring in enough to take these amazing adventures all over the world.

Bahamas, amazing vacation, epic adventure
Wouldn't you love to explore a cave during an epic adventure.
And No because once I start considering this blog a job, I am going to start stressing and suddenly it is going to be all work and no longer a hobby.

Besides, if you think about it, it is already a J.O.B.... if you consider that Just Over Broke!

I don't want to have to stress over my blog. I don't want to have to worry about who is coming and who is going. I am going to do this blog on my terms. That is just how I roll. Although I really appreciate those who keep coming back!

So if you like crazy, come along for the ride. And now... I must go, my husband is calling.

We are so busy around here!

Hope everyone has a great and amazing weekend!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

School Paperwork has Sucked Out My Brains

This morning had an interesting start.

I woke up to my son screaming because he wanted a drink... in the middle of the night... ok, so it was actually morning... 3 a.m. to be exact.

I figured this would happen. After all, he played so hard yesterday he fell asleep at dinner.
kid sleeping at dinner, sleeping on food
All that running around just wore him out!

After I had gone downstairs to fill his cup up with juice, I dragged my behind back up the stairs. The hallway was illuminated with nightlights and I could hear whimpering from the bedroom.

Suddenly out of the corner of my eye I see this rodent run in front of me and across the room.

FUCK!!! Don't tell me I have a mouse!

That was, of course, my first thought. After all, our hamster had already escaped once and we had been enforcing the "Stay Away From The Cage" Policy. Not to mention I was half asleep so I wasn't really think. But after almost squishing this little rodent, I was wide awake.
Houdini.... errrr... Buddy the Hamster, is a
friendly little guy. He just sometimes likes
to come out at night to explore.

I checked the cage and Buddy the Hamster... had indeed escape. I grabbed his bag of food, hoping that if I shook it, he would come out wanting food. Nope - he was a smart hamster! He knew he was being cornered and he knew he was being trapped.

I caught him before we had to deal with any sad, crying kids. However, by this time, my son decided he was wide awake and he wanted to watch a movie. Why not - after Hamster Hunting it wasn't like I was going to have much luck falling asleep.

So I got up... and I decided to start laundry, iron my husband's work clothes, make the kids lunches. It was a productive day to say the least. At least before 8 a.m.

This afternoon I went to go fill out the rest of my paperwork for going back to school. As if I wasn't tired enough. Whatever remaining energy I had, just went out the window. I feel as if my brains have been sucked out.

Now how the hell is this school thing going to work if I lost my brain?

Virtual Mirror