Sunday, July 23, 2006

Butchered Hair & Snoring!!!

Well, finally, the last pair of shoes are packed and I should be sleeping, as the alarm is set for 3:45. Alas, Hubby's snoring REALLY loud, so I'm up, too excited to sleep!!

What an AWFUL time it's been, though, to get to here. Remember how I was joking about my hairstylist being mad at me? Famous last words. I gut butchered!!! My hair was well past my shoulders, and is now above my ears!!! Not only that, but it's crooked!! And onIy curls under, when I flip it up!! I called the salon owner to get a new cut, but she said I'd have to pay $40 for it, as each of the stylists are independent contractors. GRRRRR. $115, and I'm miserable. This morning, I took matters into my own hands and snipped two-inch chunks off the bottom where it stuck out past the shortest part. Once I finished that, it was obvious that the left side was shorter than the right.

This afternoon, in between shopping for toiletries and a last ditch attempt at a new bathing suit cover-up (non-existent in this town!!), I got a fresh cut at a mall salon. After fooling with it myself, I still think it's a tad crooked, but better.

I tried making new business cards, only the template didn't fit the design, so they'll all have to be hand cut. Of course, after one sheet, I ran out of ink, so a cheap, thirty minute project ended up costing just over a hundred bucks and three hours. Double GRRR!!! LOL!!!

Anyway, I think I've got everything handled now--knock on wood!! Hopped out of bed the first time to launch a mad search for my badge pins!!! Important stuff, you know!!!

This afternoon we went to see Lady in the Water. BIG disappointment. It was okay, just didn't match up to the hype. Margaret was wanting to see My Ex-Superhero Girlfriend, and I wish we'd done that instead!!!

I suppose I should get back to at least trying to sleep. To those of you I'll soon see, can't wait!!! To those of you stuck home, if I manage to get my laptop hooked up to the web, I'll try posting at least a couple times to catch you up on any fun gossip!!! Safe travels!!! ;-)

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Three More Days . . .

Oh, the trauma!! To acrylic nail, or not??? It must be almost time for RWA, as any other time of the year my nails always look like crap and I don't care!!!! LOL!!! Seriously, as I haven't been getting any writing done this week, I have been pondering the issue of what to do with my nails.

I've seen so many pretty, pretty French manicure acrylics lately, I'm wanting some. Trouble is, I've got a TON of writing projects due in not a lot of time, and if the nails turn out too long, I'm afraid I'll have trouble working on my laptop. Thursday's my only booked day in Atlanta, and Margaret and my Winnie will no doubt be busy little responsible, workshop-attending beavers the whole week, abandoning me all alone in the room with the room service menu, so I figure while I'm eating, I also might as well be working. Another potential pitfall to acrylics, is what to do with them after I get home?? Am I willing to take the time out to get them filled? I had them once, and was so tired of sitting in the salon every week, I learned how to do them myself. But it's a hassle even worse than sitting and letting someone else apply them!!! Ahh . . . How lucky am I to have such minor trouble, huh?

On the kid front, Son has finally gotten grounded. He's a freakishly social creature, while Hubby and I are cave-dwelling hermits!! Son LOVES sleepovers, but is seriously bad about going from the house he's supposed to be at, to the pool, or I-Hop, or another friend's house, etc. without letting me know. Nothing sets me off faster than calling him on his cell, only to get his voice mail. Nothing, that is, other than driving 20 minutes in 105 degree heat to fetch him, only to have him not be there!!!!! This happened today, and he says he and his friend were wrestling with the friend's little brother and they didn't hear the doorbell. Or the phone? Funny how if my name were Carrie, Cassie, Kelly, Kimmy, etc., and I weighed 100lbs soaking wet, he has no problem answering the phone!!! GRRRR!!

Anyway, his phone's mine for a week. His next offense? While Hubby and I took Daughter to tumbling, he was supposed to have taped Big Brother. He forgot. This wouldn't be such a big deal, but he's forgetting a lot, lately. One day last week, he was being generously paid to feed Granny Sylv lunch, when he forgot that, too. Double Grrr. As there are a few other infractions, he's now lost all electronics and sleepovers for a while, and is pouting in his room.

Daughter's boyfriend's leaving on a week-long cruise, then spending another week in Florida, so she's also pouting--which is why I have the computer all to myself at 10:30 at night!!! LOL!!!

In other conference prep news, I get my hair done tomorrow, but the hair dresser's mad at me. She called at 3:30 today, asking where I was. I said, "Home." She said, "You're supposed to be here for your appointment." Huh? My appointment was for Friday at 3. She says in a grumpity tone that the receptionist must've written it down wrong. I'm now being squeezed in with an elderly woman's wash, curl and fluff. If I show up in Atlanta with an orange poodle perm, you'll know what happened!!!!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Uncooperative Son, Dogs & Atlanta!!!

Ahhh . . . The kids' birthday is officially over for another year. Seems like we've been doing something birthday related for weeks--but wait, that's because we have!! LOL!! Yesterday, my folks came over from Arkansas to spend the day with me and the kids. Hubby had to work--probably a good thing!! Daughter was lovely, but son woke at 6:30 AM--a freakishly rare and bizarre thing--expecting piles of gifts, cash and a trip to I-Hop for funnel cake!!! When I nixed that idea, and told him he wasn't opening gifts till his father got home that afternoon, he pouted, then rebounded with a new demand for me to cook a full-on breakfast. This, I did, after which, he went back to bed, leaving me to clean the wreckage of my kitchen that'd previously been sterile in anticipation of Mom & Dad's visit.

Son didn't roll out of bed until around eleven. Then, only because I made Daughter go get him. I asked him to take a shower--no. I informed both kids of our plans to see Superman in 3-D at Imax. Daughter says no. I asked Son again to take a shower and change clothes. (To be ready in a heartbeat to attend impromptu pool parties, Son lives in his fave Abercrombie bathing suit--seriously!! ) A fight erupted between Daughter and Son. Mom and I left to pick up their cake, leaving Dad to referee. When we got back, Son looks at the cake with disdain and says, "Only one cake?" After a couple days earlier having tossed mounds of uneaten individual cakes left from their party, it was all I could do not to throw it at him!!!! LOL!!! Can someone say spoiled rotten????? In hindsight, birthday or not, I should've sent Son sent to his room. Oh well, next time.

It's been HELLISHLY hot here in Tulsa. So hot, we've all become mole people, dashing from air-conditioned tunnel to tunnel, and by this time, Mom, Dad and I were sick of Son's attitude. To stay cool, Mom suggested renting a movie and having pizza delivered. Of course, both kids couldn't decide on a mutual movie, so Son got one, and Daughter got one. Daughter picked The Ringer, so Dad and I watched that with her in the master bedroom, while Son and my mom watched Bad News Bears in the downstairs TV room. (The living room DVD player broke!!) Anyway, in the end, a lovely time was had by all.

Last week, I went nuts, alternately shopping for Atlanta and finishing the anthology partial due Friday. I'm generally happy with it, but fear I've overstated the conflict. I read it for critique and no one seemed to pick up on it, so maybe it's just me. It's funny how different editors you work with like it different ways. Tina Colombo was heavy on the conflict being repeated often. Paula Eykelhof, rarely wanted it stated. My current editor, Jen Green, is in between. The trick is figuring out how to fit with each editor's style, while staying true to your own vision of the story. Apparently, I'm not yet there!!

In fun news . . . Last night, my friend Lynne called and asked if Daughter could attend the Red River Shoot-out in Dallas in October with their daughter. (OU/Longhorn football game.) They're flying and staying at a ritzy place, so it should be great fun!! Also, my boyfriend (Matthew McConaughey) historically attends this game. (He's a Texas fan. Unfortunate, as Razorbacks--like myself--and Texans typically don't mate, but as yummy as he is, I'll forgive him!!!! LOL!!!)

Anyway, while talking about Daughter's fun, Lynne mentioned her mother--a seriously, world-famous portrait photographer whose name I'm totally blanking on--got a kick out of my July book!!! Just so happens, it was dedicated to Lynne and a bunch of other fun folks, so Lynne's been passing it around. Being hard up for excitement of the variety that doesn't involve bad kids or doggy stains on my carpets, I thought this was cool!!!

This week, in between more Atlanta wardrobe prep, though I should get started on edits for my April 2007 book, I've got a paranormal idea I've been itching to play with, so I may mess with that in the afternoon, when it's too hot to shop!!!

Oh--one Atlanta/Gone With the Wind complaint . . . Margaret and I are flying in on Monday, planning to have fun Tuesday, touring antebellum homes. (My Winnie thinks she's going on an educational trip to a firing range, but I'm kidnapping her instead!!) Sounds fun, huh? Only one problem, after searching online for three hours, I've reached the conclusion that Atlanta has no antebellum homes. Grrr. Well, wait, they're plenty of homes, just not mansions. The only historic places I've found are perfectly nice, but not take-your-breath-away gorgeous. Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Gone With the Wind specifically mention many, many mansions built specifically for my viewing pleasure?????? LOL!!!!!

PLEASE, if anyone out there knows of freakishly gorgeous Atlanta homes to tour, let me know!!! Otherwise, our one day off will be spent wandering. In the past, where Margaret, Winnie and I are concerned, this may or may not turn out so great--or safe!!!! LOL!!!!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Naked Dreams & Party Update

Well, after narrowly surviving the kids' party (more about that later), I'm now playing catch-up in getting ready for RWA in Atlanta. I was supposed to have lost a hundred pounds, but seeing how that didn't happen, I've been squeezing myself into the stuff I wore last year and haven't been overjoyed with what I see!! LOL!! One impulse buy I grabbed last year at the Reno Macy's with Margaret before the big booksigning, I'm thinking I want to have tailored. The pants are way too big, but the shirt's too small. Weird, huh? Anyway, I just got a new shirt--again while shopping with Margaret--that I love, but I think it's too big. Oddly enough, the big pants are a perfect match with the big shirt, so we'll see what my fave sewing guy Thu can do!

In the mean time, after getting a surprise check in the mail from my Harlequin editor (God Bless you, Jen!!!!), Daughter and I hit the shopping trail. Why is it that when you actually have a few bucks to spend, you find nothing, yet when you're flat broke, everything looks and fits amazingly great??!! Anyway, I'm now having dreams of showing up naked at the conference, which isn't a good sign as to the level of my wardrobe preparedness!!!! LOL!!!

On to the party . . . Dear Lord!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Those kids were soooooooooo bad!!! Evil, evil teens that will NEVER be invited back!!!!! We've had big parties lots of times before, but I don't remember the kids having been quite so wild. Running and chasing and screeching. I was on food replenishment duty while my pals Dixie and Debbie bartended. (We bought fancy, plastic margarita glasses and made virgin margaritas and pina coladas with umbrella and fruit garnishes.) Hubby manned the Jupiter Jump and deck area. (Oh--the deck is finished save for the expensive trim pieces. Hubby and Son did an AMAZING job!!!) Daughter wasn't happy with the usual cake selection at our fave grocery store, so we got her one from a wedding cake designer. Not only was the cost double, but it was supposed to be ready at 4 Saturday afternoon. Then 6. Then 6:15. By 7, me, with my hair still dripping from the shower, along with Daughter and her friend, were sitting on the sidewalk outside the closed cake shop, just praying someone arrived with this cake we'd already paid for!!! They finally showed, then we dashed back to the house to finish doing helium balloons and cooking.

Around 11 that night, Daughter's long-time boyfriend presented her with a GORGEOUS Tiffany's necklace. The thing came in that distinctive, robin's-egg-blue blue box in a blue suede pouch, along with an engraved card. I shudder to think what it cost, and my father apparently thinks she should give it back. (I got this news from Son, who was instant messaging with Pee-Paw Monday afternoon.) Hubby and I thought about it, but looking back, when I was 15, I had a boyfriend give me a gold drop necklace with his initials--this was all the rage back in the early eighties in small-town Arkansas!! It had to have cost well over a hundred bucks, which, considering inflation, would about equal out. Dad didn't make me give that back, so I don't know why he's upset over this. I consulted with my pal Winnie (crazy-talented Americana historical author, Winnie Griggs), who felt that making Daughter give it back turned the necklace and the boy into a forbidden fruit kind of thing that had the potential to make her rebel. My Winnie's raised five perfect kids, and Dad only had me, so I'm following Winnie's advice!!! (And if by chance my father ever reads this, I am sooooo grounded!!!! LOL!!!)

Anyway, by the time Hubby and I got in bed around one Saturday night, my feet and back hurt so bad, I just laid there wondering how it was possible to hurt so bad and still be alive??!! Finally, I got up to take sleep assistance in handy pill form!!!

On the writing front, I've got the partial for my anthology due the 15th, so I've been steadily stealing moments to work on that. It's cute, but my people won't stop kissing!!!! At the end of Chapter Three, I'm putting them both on opposite sides of the town!!!

Also, my July Harlequin American, To Catch A Husband, just hit the stores, so it's been fun seeing it while running errands!! I LOVE the cover!!!!! Thank you, Cover Gods!!!! LOL!!!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Ghost Addendum!!!!!!! :-O

OH MY GOD!!!!!!! Okay, so I'm sitting here commenting on all the ghost comments, thinking, boy I'm glad the d*mn thing went away, when an empty pop can on my desk wobbles back and forth!!!!!!!! I've got chills!!!! There's a fan on, but even when I aim it directly at the can, it won't wobble. Also, I tried shaking my desk, and it won't wobble. (I mean like teetering back and forth, making a chirpy little clang!!!)


I'm going to hide in the dining room, which doesn't suddenly sound too bad!!!! LOL!!!!

The Birthday Beast!!!

Does anyone out there want to take over the planning of my twins' birthday??? LOL!!! It's grown into a monster I'm fearing will get worse before it gets better!! Thank goodness the ghost has laid low for the past few days, because I've got enough on my plate without having to deal with a haunting!!

First off, I had a SUPER rough time getting my kids into the world--six months bedrest, lots of close calls where we almost lost them, etc., so I've always tended to go overboard on their birthday, just because I'm so thankful they were safely born. Well, birthday thrills used to be easy, but now that they're reaching the ripe old age of fourteen, it takes a bit more pizzazz to wow them.

This year, each kid is inviting 25 guests. The theme is pirate (in large part due to last year's theme having been a luau, and we have lots of cute tropical decorations left over!! ), so for invitations we made cute little message in a bottle thingees with sand and shells in the bottom that I brought back from the Bahamas. For the girls, I added cheap gold rings, so it looks like there's buried treasure. For two hours yesterday, we drove and drove and drove trying to deliver them all. If I ever again have the bright idea of hand delivering fifty invites--PLEASE, someone conk me over the head!!!! We still have half to go today!!

In the mean time, we had to think of entertainment. Last year, one of Daughter's friend's brothers (that sounds so grammatically wrong, but hopefully you get what I mean?? ) brought his band. I thought they were great, but very loud. Son said he didn't want to do that again, so we had to think up new entertainment. We're going with a Jupiter Jump, that due to our sloped lawn, I wanted to put in the street (very quiet--maybe two cars a day!!). Hubby said the city won't let me. I said I'm doing it anyway, but to appease him, I spent an hour on the phone with various city officials. Turns out, hubby was right. Grrrr. I hate it when that happens!!!! Anyway, after staring at the backyard, there is a sort-of flat area I think will work, so the Jupiter Jump guy arrives at 6:30, and we'll have it from 7-11. The party's from 8 to 12, but this way I get a turn!!!! LOL!!!

All of which brings up another dilemma--the deck. The unfinished, butt-ugly deck. Now, plainly, the deck will be gorgeous once it's done, but in the mean time, we can't very well send fifty, hormonal teens racing across the back yard, leaping from this half-finished deck, so I've graciously agreed to use my conference clothes fund to finish the deck. If any of you see me at RWA in Atlanta wearing sweats, now you'll know why!!!!! LOL!!!

Anyway, after doing party, party, party, Hubby, Daughter and I went to a party last night at a friend's lake condo. If any of you are familiar with Oklahoma's Grand Lake, Arrowhead Yacht Club put on its fireworks show and it was SPECTACULAR!!!! Hundreds of boats filled the harbor in front of our friends' condo, and it was gorgeous with all the running lights!!! Except for the loooong ride home late at night, we had a great time.

Daughter's staying with them till Thursday, at which point, I'll drive out to pick up Daughter and her friend, so they can help with the rest of the birthday party, which is Saturday night. Daughter also has mandatory tumbling Thursday night for cheer, which I didn't think was very nice, seeing how they were supposed to have July off from practice, but I suppose it makes sense not to totally stop just when they're getting good. (Did I mention Daughter got her back handspring?? I think that's what the flippy things are called. Anyway, it was pretty exciting!!)

Okay . . . so while Hubby works on the deck, I'm tackling the horrific job of clearing out the dining room of all the office clutter I stashed in there while painting my office. Only I never finished painting my office, so I'm not sure what I'm going to do with all the crap!!!! Give me a holler if you have any spare room at your house, and I'll be right over!!!! LOL!!!!