Thursday, May 31, 2012

The things we mothers do...

I realized something the other day (again)

The things we mothers do for our kids!!

And not just the typical - like reluctantly sharing our favorite desserts we've been dying to indulge in for weeks, or buying them their own treats that we know they'll only eat 3 bites of before growing bored or "full", or allowing them to slip into bed with us at 6:00 a.m. despite our stand on anti-co-sleeping, because it beats actually getting up that early, or trying to wipe them on the potty while your agent is on the phone with you and hoping she doesn't hear the flush - not those. But the truly insane.

Like, I plotted an entire novel on the phone with my best critique partner/brainstorming buddy the other day while sitting on the hard kitchen floor, freezing my booty off in my PJ shorts and throwing three different bouncey-balls back and forth to keep Little Miss entertained for over half an hour, straining to hear my friend talk as Little Miss serenaded me with Disney song after Disney song.


The glam life of an author ;)

What do you find yourself doing as a multi-tasking Mom that makes you look up and giggle??

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Visit me today at !  :)

Don't forget to post your writing craft questions there!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Weekend Memories

How was your long weekend?

We spent ours in The Woodlands near Houston, Texas, visiting good friends who moved there several years ago. We had a great time! Little Miss had a blast at the aquarium in downtown Houston - rode the Ferris Wheel twice, the merry go round 4 times, and we all rode a train through a shark tunnel.

I petted a sting ray and pretty much shrieked the entire time. ha

We also went to their church, which had a fabulous service, and then to a sunday school fellowship at a cabin in Huntsville that afternoon, where we played volleyball (okay, I watched other play volleyball!! lol) and Little Miss splashed around in a kidde pool with another little boy. We ate at BJ's restaurant and had the best pizza, got Orange Leaf and grilled out one night, I tried a Zumba video for the first time (so fun!) and played Mad Gab. Then we hit up the outlet mall and Chocolate Crocodile (best chocolate dipped apples in the US!) in Cypress on Monday, then played mini golf before heading home last night. Great weekend!!

The gym welcomed me with open arms and a hard glare today. I felt about the same. Back on the diet! No more cheating here. Sigh.

Good times! What'd you do? :)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Happy Memorial Day!

As you celebrate this long weekend with your family, enjoying cook-outs, sleeping in, the swimming pool, or simply a good book...don't forget to take the time to remember America's heroes. And pray for those Troops still on duty.

God Bless America!
See y'all next week ;)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Wish You Were Here


Beth K. Vogt

Allison Denman is supposed to get married in five days, but everything is all wrong. The huge wedding. The frothy dress. And the groom. Still, kissing the groom's brother in an unguarded moment is decidedly not the right thing to do. How could she have made such a mistake? It seems Allison's life is nothing but mistakes at this point. And pulling a "Runaway Bride" complete with stealing, er, borrowing her best friend's car doesn't seem to solve her problems. Can Allison find her way out of this mess? Maybe she just needs to stop orchestrating everything. Allison prefers being the one in control, and giving it up is not going to be easy. But to find her way again, she will have to believe that God has a plan for her and find the strength to let Him lead.

My thoughts : A super fun story, reminiscient of Julia Roberts "Runaway Bride" movie (one of my favs!) This is a great summer read. Beth's talented writing style, full of description and realistic dialogue, only enhance the fun aspect of this novel. And for those of you who miss the Chick-Lit genre, this is pretty close in all the ways that counted the most. Don't miss this one!

And how cute is that cover?? ;)

Beth K. Vogt provides her readers with a happily ever after woven through with humor, reality, and God's lavish grace. She's a non-fiction author and editor who said she'd never write fiction. She's the wife of an Air Force physician (now in solo practice) who said she'd never marry a doctor-or anyone in the military. She's a mom of four who said she'd never have kids. Beth has discovered that God's best often waits behind the doors marked "Never." She writes contemporary romance because she believes there's more to happily ever after than the fairy tales tell us. Beth earned a journalism degree from San Jose State University and met her husband Rob when he knocked her down at a karate studio. They've been married for 31 years. They have four children, ranging in ages from 28, 25, 23 and - thanks to a funny thing happening on their way to the empty nest-a 10-year-old. The Vogt Team, which now includes a "daughter-in-love" and "son-in-love," enjoys hiking and camping in Colorado. Read more about Beth at her website:

Link to buy the book:

Here's the blog tour link! :)

I received this novel free from the publisher for a review!

Like a Princess

Couldn't resist. My Little Miss is on a Disney Princess kick like crazy, and her July birthday party is already themed to be such. So when I saw this...hehehe.
Here's my results! Not totally accurate but hey, she's a cutie and I do love shoes ;)

Saying that your family doesn't appreciate you would be an understatement. You quietly get your way with them.You may not be treated kindly, but you treat everyone with kindness anyway. Your love your true friends dearly.You are optimistic and sure that you'll be happy some day. You are patient. Good things happen to good people, and good things will happen to you. They probably already have.

Which Princess Are YOU??? :)

Monday, May 21, 2012


Seriously, last week was nuts. Two dress rehearsals for Little Miss's recital, the gym, book progress, Forum deadlines, Little Miss's actual recital, graduation from Preschool 3, last night of Cubbies (AWANAS), church and graduation that night from Cubbies...and all the celebrations that took place after all the big events...

Here's a few pics from all the madness. (more to come later, these were just some from my phone)

Despite my need for a long nap, I'm so SO SO proud of her. She did fantastic at all of her events, and made this mama super proud. I couldn't have asked for a smarter or sweeter Little Miss :) The recital went great, I couldn't believe how grown up she looked! Part of her prop fell over during the recital (cardboard music box) and you know what? She looked at it for just a second and KEPT GOING. So proud. Such a big girl.

And now...

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I will NOT cry...

So my Little Miss graduates preschool tomorrow!

Thankfully, it's just graduating preschool-3, she will be going back to preschool for preschool-4 this fall. So I'm not shipping her off to kindergarten yet BUT there is still a ceremony for her class and it's still called a graduation and I'm still emotional! This is a milestone of sorts because starting in the fall, and for the rest of her childhood, she'll be going to school 5 days a week. Preschool will continue to be the shortened day compared to kindergarten and so forth, but still. EVERY morning.

I will not cry...I will not cry...

I will also not be blogging tomorrow because of her graduation, a busy family day, and her dress rehearsal and then dance recital on Saturday. Busy weekend of milestones coming up! I also am currently swamped with deadlines. Yikes!

The good news is that when I pop back up to breathe next week, I shall surely have adorable pics to share ;)

Now where is my waterproof mascara?!?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Thanks to everyone on my blog and Facebook who helped give advice and sympathy and suggestions on helping me and Little Miss survive the stage she went through of being scared at night. We've come so far in such a short time!

After having a long talk with her, I did the following: added an adorable Princess nightlight to her room (she already had two but one was super tiny and barely could even count), eliminated some TV shows she liked that might be scary (not while watching them, but in the aftermath of being alone, like Scooby Doo and Winx Fairies, etc.) lingered in her room a little longer at tuck-in time instead of scooting out the door to get my own chores done, prayed over her room along with my husband, reminded her of her Bible verses she knew about being afraid, and implemented a rewards system. If she stayed in her bed allll night, she got a surprise the night morning. We did this three nights in a row.

The first night she did great, and earned a Princess T-shirt I found on clearance at Target. The second night she got up once at 3 a.m. but was immediately able to be tucked back into her own bed with zero drama, so I still rewarded her with Princess panties. Then the third night she stayed in bed all night with no issues and earned a Strawberry Shortcake t-shirt.  :)

She's had two nights now of no rewards promised and has done fabulous. Thank the Lord! :)  I'm so proud of her and so glad to have been reassured this was a normal stage and not anything that anyone had done wrong. Thanks, online family :)  You guys are the best!!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Money Matters

Do you ever sit down to balance your checkbook and get an instant headache? Does the thought of paying bills make you sick? Do you ever wonder where your money is going and why you're always fighting with your spouse over it?

We've been there!

So the other week my husband and I sat down (for 3 hours!! not kidding) and made a for-real budget. It's something we've been needing to do for a long time now, and while it was a major headache during the actual process, afterward has so far proven to be fantastic. It really solves a lot of problems! Gone is the wondering and the assuming and fighting and the control issues. And in its place are facts and figures (that in essence makes this non-math-girl shudder but hey I'm loving the results) that give us a plan and help us meet goals.

And also, as a planner and an organizer and a detailed person, I'm in heaven ;)

The positive benfits will be more evident as a month or two passes, but I really feel this was a good step for us! Do you live by a budget, or by the checkbook? Do you and your family have a system, or wing it? Which way works best for you and why?

I'd love feedback/opinions! :)

Friday, May 11, 2012

Sorry I didn't blog today! Was writing this morning in Starbucks with a cranberry orange scone and a white chocolate mocha, then it was off to the day spa to use my gift card from Christmas for a massage, facial, and mani-pedi. Then home to shower and head out to a yummy dinner with my family, my sister and her family and our parents for Mother's Day celebration.

So I guess really I'm NOT that sorry I didn't blog after all ;)

Hope your weekend is equally fabulous!!

Wednesday, May 09, 2012



Dineen Miller readily admits that one of the greatest lessons she’s learning about life is that there’s purpose in our trials. It’s all about trusting God and putting our hope in Him. Her favorite stories are of the miracles God has wrought in the lives of her family.
Through this lens she also believes her years as a youth counselor, a Stephen Minister, a women’s ministry leader, and a small group leader fuel her desire to ignite the souls of others through words of truth.

In addition to writing for Spiritually Unequal Marriage, Dineen has won several prestigious awards for her fiction, and her devotional writing has been featured in Our Journey and Christian Women Online Magazine. She’s also a C.L.A.S.S. Communicator and has been featured on the Moody Radio Network, Family Life and Focus on the Family Radio.
Married for 24 years to a guy who keeps her young, she lives in the Bay Area with her husband and two adult daughters, who surprise her daily with their own creativity.
She is the co-author of Winning Him Without Words: 10 Keys to Thriving in Your Spiritually Mismatched Marriage and the author of The Soul Saver.


When Trusting God Is the Only Way Out

On an average day, God started her missions in her sculpting studio, revealing the face of the person she would meet at the grocery store, bank, or playground. The goal was always the same. Reach the lost, bring someone back to God, restore hope. But then came the tough missions—the ones that sent Lexie Baltimore into real battle. And she had a few battle scars to show for it.
Tormented that she can’t reach the one person she loves the most—staunch atheist and husband Hugh—Lexie finds her own hope waning when the battle comes to her doorstep in the shape of a pastor who represents everything she wants and everything her husband is not—a godly man.
Then false accusations and rumors spin her husband and family into a precarious position, and the only way out is to trust God. But how can she convince her husband when she’s struggling to trust God herself?
This time Lexie is the mission.


“Never before have I felt as if I were seeing someone’s life play out across a page until I read Soul Saver. Dineen Miller's prose had me sighing at the beauty of her word pictures. This is not a book to be missed – Life changing!”

— Robin Caroll, author of the Evil series and Injustice For All
“When you combine stellar writing, intriguing characters, and a fascinating plot the result is a story like Soul Saver. It’s the kind of novel I wish I had written.”

— James L. Rubart, bestselling author of ROOMS, Book of Days, and The Chair

If you would like to read the first chapter of The Soul Saver, go HERE.
Buy your copy here! The book link is:

I haven't gotten to read this novel yet, but it's in my pile for VERY soon!! Dineen and I go way back in the ACFW and I'm so excited for her about this release. She's not only a talented writer but a sweet woman with a heart for the Lord and her family. Don't miss this novel!!!! :)
Visit me today at

AND check out my newest monthly column ON GOOD GIRLS, for Nicole O'Dell's teen CHOOSE NOW Ministry. My column is the first Saturday of every month. Here's the link!

And one more interview at Proof See the times! :)

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Soooo I actually have the house to myself for a little while this morning and need to put it to good use! Meaning no blogging or facebooking right now ;)

Check back tomorrow!

Monday, May 07, 2012

So Little Miss is in a stage! The "I'm Scared" stage, apparently.

For a while now she's been following me around the house, not liking when I left the room and didn't come IMMEDIATELY back. Understandable, I remember doing that to my mom when I was younger.

But also for a while now she's been getting up at the crack of the first ray of sun and coming to my room, usually waking up and yelling MAAAAAAMA as she runs/thunders through the house (we live in a house off the ground so it sounds like a racehorse galloping my way!) This is typically anywhere from 6-7 a.m. If it's 7, I'll go ahead and get up. 6? No ma'am. So I'd usually tuck her in my bed with me and we'd fall back asleep for an hour or less before starting the day.

This isn't a problem for my husband, who is either gone at night at the fire station or home and able to sleep through ANYTHING - including thundering racehorses at 6 a.m. - but for me, it means I'm barely hanging on the edge of the bed, have a corner of a pillow, a knee in my back, and a snore in my ear.

Not ideal sleep for anyone.

And we've always been anti-co-sleeping, so even though it was technically morning, this still sort of broke my rules. I didn't want to start a bad habit of her sleeping in our bed every morning or almost every morning, even for a short time. Just not healthy in my opinion especially for an almost 4 year old. (not judging anyone who chooses to do this, just stating my opinion for my family)

So I decided to break the habit and next time go put her back in her bed. Well the next time (last night) it figured that she not only didn't want to go to sleep in her room alone, she woke up at 1 and came and got me. And at 3 and came and got me. Then at 6. Then we had a very rough morning from 6-7 while we fought it out, me refusing to let her come in my bed, her refusing to stay alone, and both of us crying from exhaustion.

I don't want to do that again!

Any other suggestions, Mama's?

She said she was scared, but she won't/can't say of what. I've heard tricks about "monster spray" and such and loved one mom's suggestion to me instead to use lavender scented water and call it "sweet dream" spray instead. Also considering doing that, and considering getting blackout shades for her windows, to help with the "up with the sun" thing. It's not just concern for my own sleep, though I am definitely a grumpy bear without it, but for her. She's going to bed later and waking up earlier and not always napping anymore. That's not good for her, and I'm afraid if I put her in bed earlier than she's used to, say moving it to 7:45 or so, she would wake up in the middle of the night for sure.


Did your 3 year old (almost 4 year old) go through a similiar stage??

Friday, May 04, 2012

Can't put it down good...

So I'm required to say I received this book free for review from the Publisher, but with Susan May Warren novels, I can assure you I will eventually get a copy regardless of it was free or a million dollars. She's by far one of my top fav authors and this new book in her Daughters of Fortune series is fantastic. Do NOT miss Baroness!

I'm ALMOST done reading it and wow. I've laughed and cried and snorted and huffed and smiled and swooned and considered giving up my own writing career because really, how could I ever do better than this novel?

Just kidding. Sort of ;)

Seriousy, check this novel out. It's unforgettable. And if you had a brain freeze and missed the first in the series, go back and get it!!!!! PLEASE!! I beg you.

As usual, Susie has a bunch of flash and sparkle extras for ya like giveaways and fun stuff :)  See below for details!

Baroness – Book Two in the Daughters of Fortune series
Lily and Rose, daughters of an empire coming of age in the roaring twenties, can have anything they want ... except freedom.

Expected to marry well and to take the reins of the empire, they have their lives planned out for them. But, Lily, Esme's daughter longs to return home to Montana, to adventure outside the confines of New York City. And Jinx's daughter Rosie dreams of the bright lights of the newly emerging silver screen. But following their dreams - from avant garde France, to Broadway, to the skies in the world of barnstormers and wing-walkers will take all their courage.

And if they find love, will they choose freedom or happily ever after?
Find out more from Behind the Pages:

Susan May Warren is the RITA award-winning novelist of over thirty novels. A five-time Christy award finalist, a two-time RITA Finalist, she’s also a multi-winner of the Inspirational Readers Choice award, and the ACFW Carol Award. A seasoned women’s events speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you! She is also the founder of, a story-crafting service that helps authors discover their voice. You can find her online at


Enter Today - 4/18-5/7!

Baroness Roaring 20s Kindle Fire Giveaway from @SusanMayWarren!

Find out what the reviewers are saying here!

Expected to marry well and to take the reins of the family empire, they have their lives planned out for them. But following their dreams -- from avant garde France, to Broadway, to the skies in the world of barnstormers and wing-walkers -- will take all their courage.  And if they find love, will they choose freedom or happily ever after?
Celebrate with Susan by entering her Roaring 20s Giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A Kindle Fire

  • Signed copies of Baroness and Heiress by Susan May Warren

But hurry, the giveaway ends on 5/7/12. The winner will be announced on 5/9/12 on Susan’s blog, Scribbles!

Just click one of the icons below to enter! Tell your friends about Susan's giveaway on FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning.

Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Who here is on Pinterest? What do you do there? What are your likes and dislikes about it?

In 50 words or less, tell me why I should get involved there.

GO! :)

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Visit me today at for my writing craft talk! :)

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Seriously? It's May??? Didn't we just have Christmas? I know people say that a lot. But for real. Didn't we?????!?

Why does time fly when you get older? I guess because we're busier. Hmmm. I don't like it ;)

So, Happy Spring, which will soon be bubbling over into summer!! I love summer but here's the thing - I'm a high maintenace kind of gal. I like air conditioning and being cool and comfortable and non sweaty. My hair does freakish things when I'm sweaty or in high humidity. I probably live in the wrong state for that fact but oh well. What can ya do?

Who else is a high maintenance summer survivor? Come on, Autumn! ;)

(though I'm actually totally ready for summer this year because Hubby and I are taking a cruise in June!)