Monday, June 23, 2014

rooms of sadness and other things i study

read and loved this book. it was about the kind of darkness you have to read through fast so it doesn't sit too long on your soul, but half way through the book, it took a turn and the heaviness lifted and as a mother of boys, the relationship between mother and son really resonated with me.

currently studying some really interesting material and making notes for what may be the next novel.
if you need a writing prompt click here.
if you want to win $100 to spend on good eats click here

Thursday, June 19, 2014

bibi guns, plastic fruit, and your money

 in order to photograph my wine basket and new wall vase (which reminds me suspiciously of a beautiful version of an oversized shot glass on a string St Patrick's day revelers carry around) I had to shove into it the bibi gun and yellow safety glasses that were poking out the top. (normal I'm sure) thanks, boys
 the faux fruit basket at my house contains an equal amount of sunglasses (I stole the idea for plastic display nutrition from my sister when I noticed her house lacked the fruit flies that accompany the real thing -- now my fruit is safely in the crisper. Some wise guy has since put teeth marks in the plastic fruit. I left it, as they definitely look real now.)
I've been wrestling with gimp software for my new editorship. One successful project in, I am so thankful for the you-tubers that have gone before me (a saving grace for an impatient visual learner)

my home office is quiet for a few more hours. I'm off to take advantage of them.

to enter to win $100 to spend at your favorite restaurant click here
for today's writing prompt click here
And if you are looking for feedback on your manuscript, check out a chapter by chapter option at the bottom of the blog page (rh side)

Friday, June 13, 2014

the only thing i'll copy from a 'real housewife'

first day of summer for me and there's a week of writing and house puttering I have blocked off on the calendar.
in between thrifting and meeting first with one of my favorite writer friends Allison for lunch (which doubled as touching base on upcoming projects -- we're writing a writing book together and co-hosting the writer's weekend together again this year (save the date: Nov 21-23 in Hope BC) and with my sister for starbucks and a mall crawl (she has a baby so it consisted of cursory glances at storefronts and then dashing in and out of the dollar store to buy the supplies I need to copy the arrangement I mentally circled when watching RHOC (yes, guilty pleasure exposed -- literally no brain-power needed to
watch this show so perfect when exhausted ;)
then came home and executed my favorite kind of 30 second craft: insert foam into container, arrange flowers until foam is covered. done.
then heard the boys and friends coming down the driveway post school -- time to hide with a notebook and write

if you're looking for a writing prompt click here

if you'd like to win $100 to spend at the restaurant of your choice click here

Monday, June 09, 2014

win $100 to spend at the restaurant of your choice

Win $100 (Cdn) to spend at your favorite restaurant this summer!
How to enter:
·         Share this contest by emailing this blog post link
with a description of the contest to your address book, posting it on your facebook status line or twitter feed or blogging about it on your blog
(you can do all 4 items listed above and get 4 entries)
·         You must comment in comments of this blog post with your name, your favorite restaurant and its location, and the ways you’ve entered this contest. (update: if you have trouble posting in the blog comments, you can list the ways you've entered on the facebook page)
·         Contest administrators reserve the right to disqualify entrants who are inaccurate or untruthful in their entries.
·         Winner will be drawn by random draw on July 19th at noon and will be announced within the following week. The contest is open to North American residents over 18 excluding the author’s family.
·         You can get bonus entries by:
·         Downloading a free ebook sample of Stories Your Mother Never Told You found here You don’t need an e-reader. You can read it online on your computer
·         emailing the sample to a friend (steps found on the first page of the sample)
·         joining the Facebook page
·         inviting friends to the Facebook page
·         adding Stories your Mother Never Told You to your want to read list on
·         posting a link on social media to the upcoming Harrison Arts Festival literary café
·         sending an email to to sign up for the Writer’s Weekend informational email list

Sunday, June 08, 2014

in praise of the three Rs

 as much as I enjoy pinterest, nothing says lazy Saturday mornings like a stack of magazines, some lists on the back of receipts, (which land up being a mish mash of to do's, storylines, and trends to watch for) and a quick lavender French manicure. (easy DIY tip: run all over the end of your fingers with the polish and take it off after with a Qtip dipped in polish remover -- it allows you to make a smooth quick line)
 planned dinner party outfit -- (landed up switching out the earrings for something dangly) The thing I notice about thrifting is that nearly every trend I want to wear that shows up in magazines is probably something I already have in the closet or something that is waiting to be discovered at the thrift store. which either means people are buying trends and then not wearing them or there really is nothing new under the sun.
 missing button from this thrifted dress i love is fixed by rearranging buttons and pinning a jewelled pin I found at a flea market in Harrison in 2004 in the new missing spot. The thing I love about secondhand shopping is that it creates opportunity for each vendor along the way so the more reincarnations a piece has the better (many secondhand vendors are selling for humanitarian projects). I also love how it saves things from waste.
 even when clothing is done, it can still be recycled into something new: this frame waiting for the glue gun is covered with trim from a discarded blouse and an old postcard. (the rest of the shirt is waiting in my fabric stash)
thanks to a pocket door, our 1 and only farmhouse bathroom also doubles as a faux-ensuite. (thrilled to find the local dollar store was selling this vinyl wall sticker for a dollar and a quarter)

writing this week is piecing together the next project in the wings. I land up writing on a lot of scrap paper and many digital files and the throwing it all together and fleshing it out feels not unlike taking an interview and making it into an article or research into a paper.

if you're looking for a writing prompt, find one here

Saturday, May 31, 2014

signage, gilt, and speed housekeeping

 i'm not sure why i post signs like this in my kitchen. i have three boys. it's not like they need any encouragement.
 of all my thrifting adventures, I cherish the 25 cent finds the most. this gold cherub frame was one of those. I was explaining to friends the other day that tailoring life choices to your own quirky sense of self means there will be less competition for them. if everyone did the same thing you do, you be hard pressed to get an opportunity to do it. (supply and demand and all that) that applies to everything from how you spend your time to what you buy or don't (i keep leafing through this mini board book of d and my 1 night getaway a few years ago -- even though it takes a master scheduler to coordinate multiple boys' activities and supervision in our absence, I'm thinking it might be worth it...)
this feels like a good Saturday morning to me: blogging, reading some brain candy and texting friends. I'm giving myself another 10 minutes until I have to whirl this house into enough shape (read: cleaning like people are coming over in 20 minutes -- it means I won't have to spend more than 20 minutes on it) and can get on with the rest of my day: writing, puttering, visiting.

little c is in the middle of negotiating sales for his loft bed thanks to social media. he has great visions for its replacement. you know it involves collecting the rest of the household's belongings into his room -- the studio apartment for a nine year old that it is ;)

if you are looking for a prompt to start writing, click here

Thursday, May 22, 2014

reading helps you recover from life

i've finished three books in the last week. this one, this one, and this one (and the three glasses of red that accompanied them) probably because i'm recovering from writing mine, presenting at a conference (for the first time), wrapping up the day job before it pauses for summer, and keeping the side gig going. and did i mention how many rides these kids need?

books help you recover from life.

i noticed yesterday in one of those overwhelming gratitude moments that i am at the stage where my kids are old enough to mow the lawn and treat me to starbucks. it's been going on a while now but life keeps going, morphing from one thing to another, until i realized, hey we're here now.

and I like it.

because when things fall off the to do list completed, for a compulsive list maker that means add more, you know i will, with family and writing and reads thrown in between.

a couple of announcements: thrilled to be part of this year's Harrison Festival of the Arts' Literary Café on July 14th. save the date! and to be the new editor of Groundwork (a magazine for adult basic education educators) if you'd like submission guidelines, email me at

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