Archive for November, 2005

Birthday Cards?

Last night we gave our granddaughter her birthday card with $10 inside. She took the money and left the card. Okay, she’s only ten so that’s perfectly understandable and we rarely spend much money on cards.

But that started me to thinking. What does everyone do with their cards after they get them? They’re expensive! Birthday cards cost around $3-$5 for a decent one.

Most people spend a lot of time searching for the right card. When I get one, do I just read it, then toss it in the trash? But if I’d saved every birthday card I’d ever gotten my house would probably be a fire hazard–said with much sarcasm.

My husband gives me “ahhhh” cards. The kind that brings a tear to my eye. Especially when look at the back and see the price. He could’ve bought me one of those really small boxes of Godiva for what he’d spent on the card, then just written a note saying how much he loves me.

Cards from my daughter usually have a message that says how much she appreciates that I didn’t kill her when she reached her teens. Terrible twos have nothing on a girl reaching puberty. She’s 35 now, she can quit apologizing.

Our son actually remembered my birthday one year, but he was broke. He took a paper bag and cut out enough to make a card, tore the edges then burned them without catching himself on fire (I was so proud of him for that). He wrote a silly poem and drew a really bad picture. I still have that card.

One year I cut up a bunch of cards and made a collage, then I made place mats. They have clear plastic at the craft store that you can iron over the front. That works pretty good. You can fancy them up in a lot of different ways. The grandkids seem to like them.

I have one friend who gives me cards with sexy guys on the front. I love this friend! I made a collage of all these men and made myself a placemat. Sometimes doing crafts can be a good thing. Oh, yea!

So, what do you do with all those cards no matter what the occasion?
Karen Kelley
“…romance’s rising funny girl.”
Sharon Sala on Temperature’s Rising

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What do YOU want for Christmas??

…and how do you let others know THIS–and not the moose-head slippers–is what you want because you really hate those slippers?

Okay, you could tell people who give you gifts that you want such-and-such but that’s like handing someone a shopping list. Besides, it’s not that you want a specific thing but something in that category and that they pick out.

My husband’s great but he’s one of those guys who thinks a new Dutch oven is just the perfect gift (got that two years ago). Got the Kitchen Aid mixer last year along with three William Sonoma cookbooks to go along with the fifteen others he bought. Do we see a pattern here? Yep, the man likes to eat and thinks getting me stuff to feed him is his contribution to the situation.

I’ve tried leaving catalogues around and they wind up in the recycle bin. I drop hints and they go right over his head. I say let’s plan a trip and he hands me a recipe.

I could go out and just buy what I want but it’s more than what I usually spend but would make a terrific gift from my dh.

How do I get this great guy to buy me something besides a bread maker…I just know that’s what he has up his sleeve this year.

Any ideas? Anyone else been down this road?

Dianne…who really is greatful but could use a little bling in her life

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November 24

I didn’t have to look hard to find a blog topic for this week. November 24, Thanksgiving Day, is one of those rites of passage in my life… I was born on Thanksgiving Day, and this year once again, my birthday falls on Turkey Day. My mom never lets me forget that my advent into the world made her miss out on the traditional dinner that year. 🙂

But 2005 is more momentous than most… this year is a milestone for me… more than forty, but less than sixty. Half a century… the same number of years as there are states in the union. Do you get my drift??? It’s confession time here!! Seeing the number written down or spoken out loud sort of makes me cringe. How did this happen?? Inside I still feel like I just graduated from college. Ha!

Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to stop having birthdays. My two dearest friends died early, one of breast cancer in her thirties, and one of ovarian cancer in her forties. So I am fully aware of how very precious it is to have each hour, each day, each year. And I plan to be an outrageous 95 year old lady one day.

I do feel extremely blessed, and regardless of the “number” on this birthday, I am so very thankful for all the happy moments in my life. I have a sweetie-pie husband and a wonderful marriage, two lovely daughters who make me proud, and a second career that brings me lots of joy and satisfaction!!

And last but not least, I am grateful for the many new friends I have made in the last few years, friends who love and treasure books as much as I do. For all of you online buddies (and some of you I know in person!), I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving with good food, good friends, and family members who don’t drive you completely crazy. 🙂 🙂

Love, Janice

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Thanksgiving recipes…

You asked for it, so here it is…a chance to share our Thanksgiving recipes. I’ll get the ball rolling by sharing one of mine. 🙂 This one is a super favorite with my family and I get mega complaints if it isn’t in the dessert spread after dinner. I found it in my husband’s grandmother’s recipe box and she’d clipped it from a magazine at least 20 years ago. It’s just so simple, I love making it!

Eggnog Pie

1.5 cups real egg nog
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tspn sal
1 tspn vanilla
1/4 tspn almond extract
1 cup whipping cream (whipped)
1 – 9 inch crust – baked (shortbread or graham cracker crust can be used too)

Mix gelatin, sugar and salt. Gradually stir in eggnog. Warm over low heat until gelatin is dissolved. Watch carefully, stirring from time to time. Do not let milk get hot (no bubbles). Chill until mixture mounds when dropped from a spoon. Fold in flavorings and whipped cream. Chill about 5 to 10 minutes. Spoon into crust. Chill.

It’s fabulous, it really is.

What are your favorite Thanksgiving recipes?

Lucy Monroe

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Let’s do a quiz….

I love quizzes…

I was going to look for a super goofy one tonight, like what kind of women’s underwear are you…but it’s been a long day and i’m TIRED….

So we’ll do this one. I’ve been saving it anyway.

you are violet

Your dominant hues are red and blue. You’re confident and like showing people new ideas. You play well with others and can be very influential if you want to be.

Your saturation level is lower than average – You don’t stress out over things and don’t understand people who do. Finishing projects may sometimes be a challenge, but you schedule time as you see fit and the important things all happen in the end, even if not everyone sees your grand master plan.

Your outlook on life is bright. You see good things in situations where others may not be able to, and it frustrates you to see them get down on everything.

the spacefem.com html color quiz
Violet, huh? I dunno about playing well with others. But yep, I’m confident~and the little things that stress a lot of people out tend to just amuse me. So it may be sort of right… 😉
What are you?

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I need help! I’ve got to shop for Christmas presents.

So far I’ve bought a down comforter for my husband who’s allergic to feathers. See, this is what writing does to my brain. I have none.

Sooo, I got this great idea.
I’m going to pooch your shopping lists out there and buy what you all are buying. Hey, I figure I write this blog every few weeks and share my very shallow thoughts and now’s the time for you all to pay me back with gift suggestions. What’s everyone buying?

For your kids? Mother in-laws? Aunts and Uncles?

Come on, give. I’m desperate here.

Is there an impossible gift to find this year? I remember driving for two hours and waiting in line two more for a tickle-me-Elmo. Then there was the run on those Cabbage Patch kids. I think they were scalping them for two-hundred bucks a piece. I had three and was really tempted to sell.
I can buy a lot of printer paper with that kind of money.

So, what are you all buying that I should be buying before it’s too late or is it too late already? What’s the tickle-me Elmo of 2005?

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How about a winner

🙂 I said contest…I’ll give away a prize. Giving away a copy of Hot Spell. If the winner I picked already has one, we’ll work something else out. And the name drawn…

Bkwrm26~ I need you to email me. Put Blog Winner in the subject line. email me at shi@shilohwalker.com

Thank you!

And keep posting, people. Christmas is coming, you never know… there might be a cool pressie for somebody.

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Do you like to win?

Vamps and Scamps are thinking of doing contests on the blog.

How do you win? By posting in the comments area.

What can you win? It varies… anything from ebook downloads to books signed by the author…and more. Depends on what we feel like giving away.

How often? Probably at least once a month. The more you talk to us, the better chance you have of winning. of course, we want REAL replies… not just little one line comments.

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~Posted for Janice by Shiloh~


Did you notice? Two auspicious things happened on the morning of November 1. (Okay, make that three – ’cause we all know that Shiloh’s wonderful new book, Hot Spell, hit the shelves… you know – the one that’s going to sell a bajillion copies!)

But I digress… these other two happenings kicked off the unofficial start to the holiday season. The first event I must mention was of a retail nature. Early that day, Wal-Mart stripped the Halloween aisle bare, reduced all the plastic skeletons and pumpkin carving kits, and replaced them with peppermint candy canes, holly dishtowels, and chocolate snowmen. A sure sign that “you know what” is a-comin’.

The second inescapable turning of the tide showed up in my mailbox – the brand new, wrapped in plastic, heavy as a pound of hamburger meat, glossily photographed Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog. As I later found out, there are two versions… this one is deeply into fashion, and they have promised me that my traditional catalog with the “his ‘n hers” gifts is on the way.

But the fashion catalog was definitely intriguing! How about a black lace and Swarovski crystal bra for $325.00? The matching panties are a steal at $175. For the man in your life, NM offers a limited-edition 18-karat gold and pave diamond Swiss Army knife for only $6800. Or upgrade to the Executive version with a gold chain and an engraved blade for $50,000. So many choices…

In case you were wondering… fur is still in, despite the PETA people… you might enjoy a black mink capelet for $2600.

If you’re on a budget (and who isn’t), take home the cute retro “Days of the Week” panties from Juicy Couture. Those will only set you back $58 for the set or $8.29 per day… or $4.15 per cheek!

And last but not least… the Hello Kitty silver necklaces with your choice of charms… Ballet Kitty – $900, Tennis Kitty – $950, or my personal favorite – Ski Kitty – $850.

Often, the latest couture fashions don’t really appeal to me, but judging by the beautiful dresses in this issue, romance is back on the boardwalk… lots of velvet, tulle, silk and taffeta… and wonderful, rich colors. I have been known to save these catalogs and use them later to “dress” my heroines. And did I mention that the lingerie pages are alluring as well?!?!?!

Well, there you have it – a hot off the press look at what’s available for your holiday shopping pleasure.

In an exclusive arrangement with Neiman Marcus (Tennessee branch), you can visit my website and order from your wish list. Each item will have a 5 percent mark-up, all of which goes straight to my bank account.

And if you are one of those people who had to be told by McDonalds that hot coffee “may” burn the heck out of your private parts if you spill it in your lap… the above paragraph is a joke!!! It always makes me cranky to get sued right before Christmas.

Happy shopping all you Scamps and Vamps, and remember, you can never go wrong with a NM gift card. All denominations welcome, but I love the ones with lots of zeroes. 🙂

Wishing you all in advance a stress free shopping experience…


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Things to be thankful for

Well, it’s almost Thanksgiving here in the States.

A day of feasting on turkey or ham, usually involving the female…or the male…whoever does the cooking, getting up at the crack of dawn to slave over the food. Usually involves lots of leftovers that get munched on for a few days after. Makes sense, because after slaving four hours over that one meal, who wants to spend much time cooking afterwards?

So it’s just a few weeks away~and after that, the mad rush of the Christmas holiday. I love Christmas, but I don’t always put much stock in Thanksgiving.

If there’s something to be thankful for, I try to remember to thank God for it regularly, not just on a holiday. However, I probably am not as thankful for things as I should be.

So what am I thankful for…

10) my health~okay, I’ve had some medical problems and I get sick a couple times a year. But be that as it may, it could be worse. Instead of asthma and carpal tunnel, I could be have really serious things. So even though I’m dealing with the mother of all chest colds right now, I’m basically thankful that I can walk, that I can see, that I don’t have to spend the majority of my time at medical facilities or getting gillions of tests run, etc etc etc

9) Nice house, decent cars. Even if we’re still paying on them, it’s more than some people have.

8) Friends~I don’t know if I appreciate all of my friends the way I should. The really good friends that I have are always there and it seems like when something is always there, you start to take it for granted. Friends shouldn’t ever been taken for granted.

7) My parents~while we don’t always see eye to eye, I know that there are things about me that came from them. My imagination came from my dad, my love of romance and a good story came from my mom, stubborness came from both of them. I am who I am today because of my childhood and while it wasn’t always rosy, I like who I am, so I’m thankful for that.

And they’ve always known I’d become a writer, even when I didn’t focus on it so much. My mom, especially. She’s always had that faith in me.

6) Nana & inlaws~Nana is the woman who watches my kids four days a week so I can write. This woman is more than a babysitter, she’s part of the family. She puts so much into taking care of my kids and I’m thankful for that. My in laws~well, they spoil the kids rotten, and they are almost always there to watch them when a booksigning comes up or something else that I have to do and the kids can’t come.

5) My writing~while I do put a lot of work into writing, the ability to write isn’t something that I can take much credit for. I’ve always done it, it’s always come naturally. So that’s a gift that I was born with, and one I hope I haven’t taken for granted much.

4) My editor Pam. She’s a doll and she’s always been my cheerleader from day one. She slaved with me while I was trying to nail down POV ~point of view~ and she knew when it was essential to the story to get the POV right, and she knew when it wasn’t quite so important. My writing wouldn’t be what it is today if she hadn’t spent so much time with me.

3) the online community of readers and writers that I’ve gotten in touch with over the past few years. I’ve made some really excellent friends, people like Mary Wine, Renee, Anni, Vikky, Lora Leigh, Jaci Burton and Dianne Castell, just to name a few. I love being able to talk about books~when you talk about a book to somebody who isn’t a booklover, it’s just not very fulfilling. Sharing that love of reading with these people, and my love of writing with the writers, it’s just wonderful to be able to do that.

2) Faith~ it’s gotten me through a lot. Knowing that I’m not alone in life, no matter what, brings a comfort that nothing else can.

1) My family~my kids and my husband. That’s the DH with the birds. We took that picture at the zoo and it’s one of my favorites. I’m so thankful for him and for our babies. Our kids are the light of my life-they make me laugh, make me want to pound my head, and sometimes, they make me want to cry just by hugging me. My husband, he’s my rock, the one person in life that I know will hold steady for me no matter what. He’s my lover, my friend, my heart and soul. I thank God for him and for our babies~as long as I have them, I can handle anything.

So there’s my list. I could probably list more~I’m especially thankful for Godiva chocolate, Tim Tams, a good book and a glass of wine, but those essentially are little things. I was trying to stick with the big ones.

Want to share your list?

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