Thursday, May 31, 2007

Artist: Kenny Primmer

Welcome to another Art Friday at my blog. I'm going abstract this week. Kenny Primer, from the United Kingdom, has this to say about his work: "If any of my pictures pleases you or makes you feel happy sad or even romantic then I have achieved my goals in art."

This first piece is called Tomorrow's Dream. Color me warm and toasty. This is like a fuzzy blanket around my legs.

This is Whispering Light. The painting alone isn't enough for me. In this case, it's a combination of the title and the work. It's the writer in me, I suppose. I want to lie down and relax when I look at this.

Lastly, we have Calm Colored Sea. Again, I like the title with the painting. This is my favorite of the three. I really dig the palette of colors on this one. Primmer's work is calming to me. I feel serene when I look at these. Enjoy your weekend!


Thursday 13: People I'd Like to Meet

1. The President - Even if I disagree with his policies on immigration, I would still be thrilled to meet the leader of the free world. It would have been cool to be a fly on the wall of that state dinner with the Queen.
2. Laura Bush - I haven't seen much of her, but she seems like a very classy lady.
3. Dennis Prager - This is the wisest man I know (not personally, of course.) I so wish I had his ability to debate issues. I admire his clarity and how he treats every caller and guest on his radio talk show with respect.
4. Kevin Bacon - I just like his work and he seems like a down to earth guy.
5. Carol Burnett - I loved her variety show when I was a kid.
6. Linda Berdoll - If you read this particular Thursday 13, you know why I love this author.
7. Dennis Quaid - This man's smile completely undoes me. He has the deepest smile lines and his eyes just beam. So if we met, he wouldn't actually have to talk, he could just smile. LOL.
8. Rachael Ray - I love her 30 Minute Meals show. She's just got such energy and a great outlook. I love her husky little laugh. Wish I had one like that.
9. Morgan Freeman - Again, seems like a nice guy. I read someone's anecdote once that said they had met him and told him it was a honor, and he responded, "No, it's an honor to meet you." How cool is that?
10. Tiger Woods - I'd bring the hubby to this meeting, because he'd love to have his picture taken with him.
11. Alan Silvestri - He wrote the soundtrack for the most recent version of The Parent Trap and I can't help but be happy when I listen to it. Some of the melodies make me want to cry, they're so moving.
12. John Lasseter (of Pixar) - I love his movies and judging from the special features of some of them, he also seems like someone who would be easy to talk to, shy gal that I am.
13. Sting - Love his music. He's such a poet.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

And the Bracelet Goes To...

...Rhian! I did the drawing, and the lovely Rhian won! Rhi, email me your address and I'll get you your Italian charm bracelet. Congratulations to you and thanks to everyone else who entered the contest. I wish I could give a bracelet to everyone.


Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Haiku: Citrus Joy

I want fresh lemons.
Behold my Mother's Day gift
A small potted tree!


Monday, May 28, 2007

I'm Chatting

Hey, I forgot to announce that I've been invited to chat on Gabriella Hewitt's blog tomorrow, the anniversary of the release of Losing It. I'll be shooting the breeze in their chat room at 5 p.m. PST (8 p.m. EST). I'll also be announcing the winner of my bracelet contest there.


Saturday, May 26, 2007

Artist: Natasha Wescoat

Ah, another art-filled day at my blog. :)

Today we're looking at Natasha Wescoat's work. If you're a regular, you know I tend toward the whimsical, and of course, there are those spirals I seem to like so much.

Wescoat's Candy Garden reminded me of Salvador Dali. You know him. He painted the melting clocks (Persistence of Memory.) Weird, I know. I remembered this painting I saw of his where these elephants had super long legs. Then when I Googled it, I also remembered that I really think his work is too disturbing for me to want to post it here. I like the little flowers here, they look a bit like fig/flower bird feeders. I also enjoy the colors, subtle in tone, but still appealing.

Next we have Peacock in Gold. More spirals. A warmer palette. Beautiful!

This is Heaven's Dawn Series. Here I can imagine that the circles are souls rising to Heaven. The fluidity of this painting is nice. It really draws my eye in a lazy path.

This is Dizzy Spell. Again, the fluid movement appeals to me. I can't imagine painting all those circles, twisting your hand around...very time consuming, but worth it. Squares just wouldn't do it, nor would brush-shaped brush strokes.

Wescoat really had so many works that I liked, but this is my favorite, Protection. When I look at this, I think of a mother sheltering her child and my tummy gets all warm. :)


Friday, May 25, 2007

Sound of Music Quiz Answers

I usually post art on Fridays, but had to give everyone the answers to yesterday's quiz. I'll hit you with the art tomorrow. :)

1. Yul Brynner was considered for the role of the captain. At first I quailed at this thought, but remembering him as the King of Siam in The King and I, I thought...okay, MAYBE.

2. Charmian Carr slipped while leaping during the first take of "Sixteen Going on Seventeen." They had to bandage and put make up on her leg to film the sequence. Now I want to examine that scene carefully and see if I can see the bandage!

3. Kym Karath (Gretl) was too heavy for Christopher Plummer to carry her on his shoulders.

4. They used six guys to pull the car.

5. Richard Dreyfuss was considered, but apparently he couldn't dance well enough.

6. Maria/Julie never uses his first name in the movie. And someone commented that he was so NOT a darling, but I sort of disagree. If you read my post about Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife, it's tantalizing to think of what a taciturn man might be like in private.

7. Fraulein Schweiger bows sixteen times. That poor actress must have had such a headache!

8. Christopher Plummer said that, but nevertheless, he and Andrews have remained close friends ever since.

9. Carr was actually (sixteen going on) 22 years old.

10. False. Edelweiss, the last song that Oscar Hammerstein II wrote, was written specifically for the musical. But wasn't it an amazing plot device?

11. Kym Karath (Gretl) swallowed too much water and upchucked on Heather Menzies (Louisa.)
12. Debbie Turner had to get false teeth to replace the ones she lost.

13. The real Maria von Trapp appears as the elder of the two women in Austrian peasant garb who are in the background as Maria walks through a brick archway during "I Have Confidence".


Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Thursday 13: The Hills Are Alive

I used to have a weekly trivia feature on my blog, but forgot about it. They weren't always quizzes, but it's my blog and I can do whatever I want. So, here are thirteen questions about the movie, The Sound of Music.

1. What bald actor was also considered for the role of Captain Von Trapp?
2. During the filming of which musical number did someone fall through a pane of glass?
3. Which actress gained too much weight during filming and ended up being substituted by a stunt double in the scene where the family is trekking across the Alps?
4. When the Von Trapps are escaping their home, how many burly Austrians did they have to use to pull the car while the actors "pushed" from behind?
5. Which actor from the movie "Jaws," was also considered for one of the Von Trapp children?
6. Maria refers to the captain as all but one of the following: Captain, Sir, Georg, darling.
7. At the end of the movie, how many times does Fraulein Schweiger bow at the musical competition?
8. Which actor said working with Julie Andrews to "being hit over the head with a big Valentine's Day card, every day?"
9. How old was Charmian Carr in reality when she played the role of Liesl?
10. True or False: "Edelweiss" is a beloved folk song in Austria.
11. Which of the Von Trapp children threw up on another after capsizing the boat?
12. Which young actor lost too many teeth during the filming of the movie?
13. Who makes a cameo appearance in the film as an extra?

I'll post the answers tomorrow.

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One of my most enthusiastic and creative fans, Rhian, bestowed upon me this cool award. I was so thrilled to be on her list, but immediately quailed when I realized that people would be going from her blog to mine, expecting me to "talk cool shit." I don't think I even talk luke-warm shit. LOL. So, sorry if I disappointed anyone!

Anyway, I'm supposed to name five other bloggers who make me think. So, here goes:

1. One Writer's Block Party - Robin Rotham is a fellow erotic romance author. Her latest book, Alien Overnight, is so hot, my computer is lucky not to have blown a fuse. Her blog makes me laugh on a regular basis and one of the main attractions for me is her hilarious husband, Mr. Robin.

2. Anna J. Evans - Three words: Man Meat Monday. The photos she posts actually make me sort of NOT think, but the manly thoughts that go with the pictures crack me up, which means she's stimulating some part of my brain, which equals thinking, I think.

3. Nice to Naughty - Lucie Simone is a single gal living in L.A. I read her blog and reminisce about what it was like to be that. Of course, she leads a much more swinging lifestyle than I ever did, so I live vicariously through her.

4. Teahouse on the Tracks - This guy Gaucho is pretty conservative, so you've been warned. Sometimes he just posts links to other blogs, but sometimes he waxes on about stuff and I actually agree with him. :)

5. Musings from the Blonde Side - It was only my first visit to TL Schaefer/Keira Ramsey's blog, but I'm already hooked. She's a regular blogger, meaning she blogs all the time! That's critical for me. It annoys me to to visit a blog day after day and be disappointed because there's nothing new. And she's a gal after my own heart in that she organizes her blog posts into categories for the days of the week. :D

Here are the rules for the Thinking Blogger Award:
1. If, and only if, you get tagged, write a post with links to 5 blogs that make you think.
2. Link to this post so that people can easily find the exact origin of the meme.
3. Optional: Proudly display the ‘Thinking Blogger Award’ with a link to the post that you wrote.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Fill in the Blank

I saw this idea for a blog topic somewhere and thought I'd adopt it. Just fill in the blanks with your own answers in the comment section.

1. I love ___.

2. I hate ___.

3. Sofas: ___

4. __ is my idea of ___.

5. McDonalds is ___.

1. I love The Food Channel.

2. I hate snails.

3. Sofas: A great place to make out.

4. A book is my idea of heaven.

5. McDonald's is an icon of my childhood and still a great place to get french fries.


Monday, May 21, 2007

Story: Moving On

Story: "Moving On" by Valerie Kuhn Reid from the May 22, 2007 issue.

Tagline: Andrea had already decided it was time to get on with her life, when a face from her past helped her do just that...

What follows is an analysis of a Woman's World story with suggestions/observations for people who want to sell stories to WW, peppered with some personal opinion, too. :)

Reid gives us a good amount of backstory at the beginning, which, remember, is not necessarily a bad thing in a WW story. After that, Andrea reaches critical mass and takes action. Looking at the newspaper for something to do is the first step of her character arc. We get more backstory as she remembers Darren and her memories bring her back to the present. Then, she writes him a letter--step two of her character arc. Her final third step comes when she calls him and they make a date. It's difficult to have characters grow in 1000 words, but Reid manages it nicely.

Ahh, I am such a sucker for an old flame story. Maybe it's because I have an old flame that I'll never forget. This story, however, is unusual in that the characters never actively meet "on stage." We only meet Darren through Andrea's recollections. I thought that was a refreshing change, even if it slowed the pace a wee bit.

Best Part: "And since I'm never going to meet anyone in my den, I've got to start going out." This is funny, and I like that Andrea didn't need a friend, grandmother, or work buddy nudging her.

In My Humble Opinion:
The ending seemed to shift so abruptly into an omniscient point of view that I was startled, and it didn't really sing either. Still, I give it...

Grade: B

Don't forget to enter my latest contest.

The prize is an Italian charm bracelet!

Deadline May 29, 2007


Friday, May 18, 2007

Artist: Robin Eschner

I've posted the work of this artist before. It was just the one painting, but her work is worth revisiting, in my opinion.

This is I Want To Say to the Bear. I love the little bear image in the fur, and the colors and movement. The buildings floating made me wonder if this is what the bear is thinking about, but then as I looked at more of her work, I realized that the floating buildings are a motif for her that reoccur in her work with regularity.

This is Leaves. I love her color palette and how subtle it is on top, but gets more intense at the bottom. I'm not sure what animal this is--whether it's a bear or a wolf--and I'm not sure what she's saying, but she speaks to me anyway.

This is Bartok's Day on the Farm. I really like how she chooses strange colors for animals and makes it work. Oddly, I do wonder how tall that grass is, and if Bartok's legs are really long or if those ponies' legs are very squat. LOL


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Thursday 13: All In A Day's Work

Thirteen Other Professions I Would Enjoy
1. Luxury hotel star-giver - I'm sure that's not the official title, but you get the idea. How wonderful to travel from high class hotel to high class hotel and rate them according to service and amenities.
2. Figure skater - All right, I STILL dream of being able to do those amazing jumps. Ideally, I'd be part of a pair.
3. Flight attendant - Talk about benefits. I love traveling, and I even like airports and hotels (see above.)
4. Animator - I took an animation class in college, but at that time animation wasn't quite all computer generated. I'd love a job at Pixar. I'll bet it's a fun place to work.
5. Film editor
6. Book editor
7. Bookstore owner
8. Chef - I love cooking, but I'm not sure I'd love the hours.
9. *Restaurant critic - Might be hard to keep my girlish figure with this job.
10. Art teacher - I love kids and art and love inspiring them to be creative and realize that everyone can make great art.
11. Family movie critic - I'd be a regular movie critic, but I'd be forced to watch horror films, and I can't stand those.
12. Floral arranger - What a wonderful job, working with beautiful flowers. The smells alone would be worth it.
13. Travel Writer

*stolen from Jennifer Colgan's blog

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Join up to interact with other Thursday Thirteeners and pump up blog traffic. If you participate, leave your blog link by clicking on the white box above. It’s easy, and fun!

Win a bracelet from me. Here's how! Deadline May 29.


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Deserted Isle

Question #450 from The Complete Book of Questions:

If you were stranded on a deserted island, which three people would you most wish to join you?

I would want a hunky Navy SEAL, a man trained for survival and physically fit. I'm smiling, just thinking about it. Here's a picture of some SEAL trainees. Look! Their hands are tied behind their backs. That gives me all sorts of naughty ideas.

But I'm going off topic.

Who else to have on my island? Maybe Oprah. She's a resourceful woman and full of interesting stories. If we were rescued, she and I would probably be friends by then and I could convince her to incluce romance books in her picks.

So, for a third person, I guess Oprah can have a SEAL, too. Otherwise my SEAL would be doing most of the work and wouldn't have any time to devote to my physical satisfaction. Or maybe I should ditch Oprah and have three SEALS. Decisions, decisions.

So, who would you want along with you?


Tuesday, May 15, 2007

You're IT

I have been tagged for this game by Roxy Harte, Jennifer Bianco, Anna J. Evans and maybe a few others.

1. Each player starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.
2. People who are tagged need to write their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.
3. At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
4. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

1. I eat popcorn almost every day for a snack.
2. I only went on three real dates.
3. My grandmother is 94 years old.
4. I like to eat ice cream right out of the carton.
5. I miss the good old-fashioned bodice-ripper romances of the seventies. So there!
6. I own several Louis Vuitton purses that are gathering dust in my closet. I plan to sell them on eBay someday.
7. I "smuggled" a diamond (that I paid for, of course) out of Europe in my dirty clothes in 1985.
8. I crochet.

Tagged: Eden Bradley, TJ Bennet, Lucie Simone, Gabriella Hewitt, Jayelle Drewry, Loribelle Hunt, Shelley Munroe, Kissa Starling


Monday, May 14, 2007


Story: "" by J.M.S. Brevelari from the May 15, 2007 issue.

Tagline: Ida had learned just enough about computers to put together 1+1

What follows is an analysis of a Woman's World story with suggestions/observations for people who want to sell stories to WW, peppered with some personal opinion, too. :)

This week a grandmother fixes up her granddaughter with the aid of a computer dating service. If you saw the movie "Must Love Dogs," it's a little similar to that. However, Brevelan never actually shows us the love couple. The story is told through the points of view of the grandmother and her friend which distanced me from the story a bit. I think I would have felt more involved with the story if I had interacted with John and Kerry directly.

Also, the story jumped back and forth between dialogue and backstory a little too often for me. Still, the ending was cute, and the "updating" of the tried and true matchmaker plot was fresh.

Best Part: The wedding was a surprise to me. Kudos to Brevelari for that. It's hard to surprise me in fiction.

In My Humble Opinion:I was a little put off by the snippy attitude of both women. I didn’t find them particularly engaging because of it. Also, it's hard to believe that Evelyn had never heard of email.

Grade: B-

Don't forget to enter the Bracelet Contest!

How can you say no to free jewelry?

Deadline May 29, 2007


Friday, May 11, 2007

Artist: Barbara Schneider

Art is sometimes a warm blanket. This is Reflections, Burano, Italy, Var. 1, and surprise,'s a quilt! Isn't it cool?

Here is what Schneider says about herself: I began quilting in 1996 and rediscovered the pleasure of working with cloth, paint, dye, and thread. I have a B.S. in Visual Design from the Institute of Design, Illinois Institute of Technology, and a M. A. in Fine Arts from Northern Illinois University. I worked for many years as a book designer in the publishing industry. I make handmade paper and collect Japanese folk art. I am working on a degree in ornamental horticulture and feel the need to connect with the natural environment every day. These interests have had a strong influence on the my work. I often use vintage kimono fabrics in combination with other materials, papers, and embellishments.

I love how this quilt draws me in and makes me wonder what I'm actually looking at reflected in the water. It's so amazing to me that an image of wavering water can be made out of bits of fabric sewn together. I'm in awe of people who can wield thread like that. Please visit her site to see more.

Enjoy your weekend!


Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thursday 13: Movie Quotes

Thirteen Lines From Movies I Like

Points if you recognize any of these.

1. "I won't be seeing you again since I'm killing myself once we reach the honeymoon suite."

2. "I'll alert the media."

3. "Romeo and Ethel the Pirate's Daughter."

4. "Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue."

5. "Bad dates."

6. "But, Captain, I don't know your signal."

7. "Try not to kill my dogs."

8. "What did you do, wake up this morning and say, "Today, I'm going to ruin a man's life?"

9. "Will someone get this big walking carpet out of my way?"

10. "Someone just put deadly snake in room. Wake me when it get near bed."

11. "Last night, Darth Vader came down from planet Vulcan and told me that if I didn't take Lorraine out that he'd melt my brain."

12. "If you can't be in athletics, at least be an athletic supporter."

13. "They take a sharp, red hot poker, stick it up your nose, scramble things about a bit, and then rip it all out through your nostrils."

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!
The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. If you participate, leave your blog link by clicking on the white box above. It’s easy, and fun! Update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well!

Win a bracelet. Here's how!


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Theatre for Kids

I bought four tickets for Wicked today. A fantastic night at the theatre will be my birthday present to my husband. I read the book and liked it, mostly. I didn't particularly like the end, but that often happens when I read "Literature." I have no idea how closely the play follows the book, but I do expect GREAT things.

We have center mezzanine seats because I couldn't see paying $85 per person for orchestra, and that's not counting the $10 fees they attached to each ticket. I plan to bring the kids to see it, too, but I wonder if they'll appreciate it. Do you think it's worth it to bring children to see premium theatre like this?


Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Early May Flowers

Here's a pretty site to while away a few moments. Just click and drag.


Friday, May 04, 2007

Artist: Cindy Thornton

This Friday I'm featuring Cindy Thornton. Again, I found myself drawn to the bright colors and swirl motif. This first piece is called "Tiny Tuscany," from a series of paintings.

This is "The Westerlies." With its pink sky, it's like a girly version of Van Gogh's "Starry Night." I don't really like cypress trees in reality, but in art, they're very appealing.

This is Candle Flies. I don't see the candles, but it makes me think of benevolent fairies, like in Disney's movie, Sleeping Beauty.

Finally, this is "Night Lights (#7 in a series.)" I'm not crazy about the hut, but the sky is beautiful. I could see it as fabric for a pareo.

For more of her work, visit her website.

Enjoy your weekend!


Thursday, May 03, 2007

Thursday Thirteen: Children's Books That Stayed With Me

Thirteen Books I Loved as Kid
1. The Horse and His Boy - CS Lewis - This is one of the books in the Chronicles of Narnia. For some reason, this one stood out from the rest of the books, even better than The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe, which I thought was also very good.

2. Nancy Drew Mysteries- Carolyn Keene - In sixth grade, my teacher had a sizable collection of these mysteries in his classroom library. I ate them up. Mystery of the Glowing Eye had a scary illustration on the front that I remember I had to put face down when I wasn't reading it. Sometimes, I STILL have to do that if the covers are too creepy looking.

3. The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster - My 11-year-old son just finished reading this. His comment was "It was weird." I agree, but I really loved it anyway. As a child, and a native Southern Californian at that, I had no idea what a tollbooth was until that book, since I'd never experienced one in the real world. They made an animated movie from this book, but it wasn't very good.

4. Harriet the Spy - Louise Fitzhugh - I loved Harriet because she was an outsider and odd. I wanted to be like her, and in fact, I think I even adopted some of her habits, but I couldn't get behind her tomato sandwiches. Sounds like a recipe for soggy bread.

5. Are You There, God? It's Me Margaret - Judy Blume - The quintessential teenage girl book.

6. The Album of Horses - Marguerite Henry - I cannot believe this book is still in print, with its original illustrations! I went through a very intense horse phase and daily cursed my parents for not having enough money for us to own equines. I spent hours and hours drawing horses out of this book.

7. The Giving Tree - Shel Silverstein - This is a wonderful, timeless book about love.

8. Go Dog Go - P.D. Eastman - I read this over and over. I still remember many of the illustrations.
9. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl - I ADORED this book when my fifth grade teacher read it to us. I begged my father to buy it for me. I couldn't believe Charlie's family was so poor they had to eat lettuce soup for dinner.

10. Charlotte's Web - E.B. White - Tearfest waiting to happen. To this day, I will cry if I read the part where the spider kicks the bucket. Was the Dakota Fanning flick any good? My kids refused to go see it with me.

11. Happy Birthday to You! - Dr. Seuss - I also read this book over and over, mesmerized by the fanciful world Dr. Seuss created.

12. Rusty - This was a story about a cocker spaniel who gets separated from his family and how he finds his way back to them.

13. The Blue Sword - Robin McKinley - I loved this book so much, I wrote my very first fan letter to the author. It's a bit like Clan of the Cave Bear (in that I remember a distinct training phase in the book that reminded me of when Ayla "trains" with the horse) and romance and fantasy all rolled into one. McKinley always does an excellent job of depicting deep love, but keeping it chaste enough for teens to read. Beauty, A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast, also by her, was also beyond excellent.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!
The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. If you participate, leave your blog link by clicking on the white box above. It’s easy, and fun! Update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well!

I celebrate the anniversary of the release of Losing It. You win a stainless steel Italian charm bracelet. Sounds like a good deal to me. Deadline to enter is May 29.


Tuesday, May 01, 2007


In 1996, three nerdy guys (Craig Fass, Mike Ginelli, and Brian Turtle) were watching "Footloose" on TV and saw a commercial for another Kevin Bacon movie. As movie buffs, they started thinking about how many different kinds of movies Bacon had appeared in and concluded that everyone in Hollywood had probably been in a movie with him.

This inspired their game, "The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, modeled after the Six Degrees of Separation Theory which asserts that no one in the world is separated by more than six interpersonal relationships. The object of the game was to find the Bacon Number of any actor. For example, Keanu Reeves had a Bacon Number of two. He was in Speed with Beau Starr and Beau Starr was in Where the Truth Lies with Kevin Bacon.

Then, two other nerdy guys, Brett Tjaden and Glenn Wasson, created a website that will calculate the Bacon Number automatically. It's called the Oracle of Bacon. Go there. Type in the name of any actor. If you get a number higher than four, you've done really well! Have fun. :D

Don't forget to enter my Bracelet Contest. I know you're busy, but it's free jewelry! Deadline May 29, 2007.