ARC Giveaway!

Well, this was an exciting thing to come home to one day: my very first box of ARCs (advanced reader copies)!

I tore open the box and found a letter from my publisher and a big stack of these pretty little things, looking almost like the finished book (except without the final cover)! Squeeeee! It’s the first time I’ve seen my book in actual book format, and it was crazily thrilling to flip through all the pages and see the chapter headers, and the text all set up, and the page numbers, and the title on every-other page, and my name on every-other page, and the back-cover blurb, and everything — just like a real live book!

(I wonder if that feeling will ever get old????)  Continue reading

Mom’s Homemade Chicken Soup

We’ve been a little under the weather for the last couple weeks (as this terrible head-cold that’s going around has made its way through each family member!), so Superman and I have each made a version of “Mom’s Homemade Chicken Soup” over the last two weeks. The “mom” in the title is my mom. It’s her recipe. And everyone loves it.

A generation later, I’ve made it enough now that my kids think it’s mine. So now I, too, have a “Mom’s Homemade Chicken Soup.”

(But every kid needs to have a “Mom’s Homemade Chicken Soup,” don’t you think?)  Continue reading

Old Friends

It’s dark. And late. And a Thursday night. And I’m standing in the parking lot of a California Pizza Kitchen laughing so hard there are tears rolling down my cheeks.

I’m standing there with two girlfriends — friends I’ve known since high school — and on this night, wiping the tears from all the laughter, just like every time I see them, I’m thinking Why don’t I do this more often?

But I sort of know why. It’s Work in the Morning. It’s Kids Have Practice. It’s Girl Scouts, and Baseball, and Water Polo, and Karate, and Full Time Jobs, and PTA, and School Shopping, and Soccer Practice, and Saxophone Concerts, and Gymnastics, and Football Games, and Cheer Competitions, and Tennis Matches, and All The Things that have kept us moms so busy for so many years.

Our kids are all about the same age. When they were all babies, or at least pre-schooling-age, we were still able to get together, my friends from high school. We’d  let the kids play with each other while we all talked, or took walks, or crafted together, or whatever we felt like doing.

But as our kids grew older, we all drifted apart. Continue reading

I’m Old Enough To Know …

California Sunset / Photo by Nate Sanchez

I don’t love getting older. But one good thing about having passed a certain number of decades is that you become much more confident about certain things. Here are a few things I’m finally old enough to know. …

  • Patience is truly a virtue – and one of the best ones to get you through life. Patience can make you a great parent and a great spouse.
  • Respect is the key to every relationship. Respect your spouse. Respect your kids. Respect your coworkers. Respect the guy who pours your water at the restaurant. If you project your respect with honesty and sincerity, it comes back to you tenfold.
  • The way you talk to your kids when they’re young (yelling or not, swearing or not, with patience or not, with respect or not) is exactly the way they’ll talk to you when they’re about 13. And then forever after.
  • You can’t be everything to everyone.
  • It’s okay to say no.
  • It’s important to learn what your boundaries are and then set them early in every relationship, from friendships to work.
  • Childhood friends are to be cherished. No one will ever know you better than your childhood friends. You were your purist, un-formed self with them.
  • Everyone has obstacles in life. Never assume you’ve had a harder day or a harder life than the person standing next to you.
  • You never regret a family getaway.
  • Getting out of your own neck of the woods – for even just a day or a night – reminds you of how big the world is, and how people live differently than you. Not better or worse, just different. It makes the world open up, and then your mind.

What about you? What’s your favorite thing you’re old enough to know?

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