Just checking in…

Hello Friends,

Welcome to November. This is it. Halloween is over. The “season” is upon us. The time of year where we face the daily countdown to you-know-when and fight to win the merciless race against the holiday clock, all while maintaining a jolly disposition. I’m not worried. Everything gets done. Then I celebrate with a pajama marathon of my own in front of the fireplace with wine and my kindle.

Someone somewhere decided that we should all get a head start by turning our clocks back an hour. Woo hoo. A whole hour. Still, I’ll take it. I could use the sleep.

My son turns seventeen this month, which is weird because I’m still only thirty. The mirror tells me otherwise, but in my mind, I’m still that new mom worried about her little baby. Except this baby is taking his road test next week and I’ll have to face the fact that one day very soon, days maybe, I’ll hand him car keys and say goodbye. Be careful. Come back…with mint chocolate chip ice cream, if possible. Okay, there is an upside.

My second book, Letting Go, a story very close to my heart, was released in September. It’s doing well. In fact, I will be a guest at a book club tomorrow where they will be discussing it. I’m so looking forward to hearing the group’s responses. It’s a wonderful learning experience for me to hear how readers react to my book, both positively and negatively.


I recently finished Circling The Sun, by Paula McClain, based on Beryl Markham’s early life in Kenya before she flew solo (the first woman to do it) across the Atlantic from east to west. If you enjoyed The Paris Wife, I highly recommend this. McClain is a wonderful writer. I’d never heard of Beryl Markham and now I’ve added her own book, West With the Night, to my TBR list.

Then I re-read On The Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves because I remember loving it so much years ago. I loved it again. If you haven’t read it, I suggest you do. She self-published that one, you know. It’s still my favorite of her books. Lastly, I read In A Dark, Dark Wood by Ruth Ware. A bit dark (no, I’m not trying to be funny) and predictable, but it moved along quickly and kept my interest.  CirclingSun

OTI original cover

So, that’s about it for now. I hope you’re all doing well. I’ll be back before the real craziness sets in. Take a breath.

What are your plans for the upcoming season?


Body by Chocolate

It’s the same story every year.

I bought Halloween candy too early. Again.

One year, I held off so long, I forgot. The first masked children rang the doorbell, waiting with their bags open, their peeking eyes in anticipatory glee.

I hid in my bedroom, ashamed, until they left. I did this all night.

The following year, I sent my husband out to buy candy on the eve of Halloween. He returned with an obscene amount of full-sized candy bars. “All they had left,”  he told me.

An expensive mistake.  

Since then, I buy it myself, from Costco, in advance.  I suffer the same torture every year.

I sit with the bag, day after day, while I try to work at home. They taunt me – those mini-chocolate hellions: We know you want us…..We can feel it. We see how you look at us when you pass. Come on…just a taste. You know how we make you happy….

Ah! I ask my kids to hide the bag as I remind them of the dangers of drugs; implore them to avoid menacing peers who will coax them to try it…Stay strong! I tell them.

While they’re at school, I search the house for the loot. Where the hell did they put it? I am thinking of all different ways to punish them, as I search through their closets, the basement, kitchen cabinets.

I amass 6 bags of old clothes, unused kitchen items, boots, and toys, and put them aside for the poor.

My house has never been cleaner. Where is that candy?

I find it in the basement toy chest, under a 1200-piece Lego box. 

Should have done a better job. Only took me three hours to find it.

 Last year it took me three and a half.

On Halloween, I pour the candy into our special orange bowl. (I used to have a nice basket, but it was stolen – don’t ask)

My husband looks at it. “Where’s the rest?”

 “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

He peeks into the bowl again. “I thought we bought the 250-pc bag. There isn’t even half of that here.”

I shrug, and walk away. He follows me, not to be deterred.

“Where is the candy?”

I sigh, in defeat.

“Give me a hug, and I’ll show you.”

He can’t. His arms don’t reach around me anymore.

“I see.” He says. “I’ll have a chat with the boys. We’ll work on their creative hiding skills.”

Yeah, good luck with that.