Tag Archives: Mother

Holiday Get Togethers are For Everyone in the Family

You might think I’m nuts, but when I invited my family to my house for Christmas dinner, I had them bring Everyone in the family. That included everyone’s four-footed children.

Twenty-six people and seven dogs over 50 pounds each (except for the puppies) Yes, chaos ensued for a bit. But those pups sure did appreciate it. they had a great time, and my Chloe was sad to see them all go.

The nice thing was that no one had to rush home to feed their dogs or let them out. My yard may never be the same, but who cares?

Here is a precious moment that came out of the event. This is my Chloe taking some time out away from the other dogs to play with her mother, Mitsy.

Chloe is the silver with the pink bows.  And Yes, dogs do remember their birth mothers.

How cute is this?

Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop: The First 250 Words of my New Novel, OPTIMAL RED

Sunday_SnippetsOh Yeah!

It’s the Sunday Snippets

Critique Blog Hop!

.

In this hop, participants post 250 words of their work in progress to be critiqued.  Then everyone hops around to critique others.  Don’t have a post of your own?  We’d love a critique anyway!  And next time you can sign up yourself (see below)

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All right.  Call me crazy… but I don’t have anything else to post… So I am posting the first 250 words of my new novel which is the sequel to LAST WINTER RED from the Make Believe Anthology.

I just wrote this about three hours ago, and it has not been proofed.

Yeah.  I’m nuts.

What I’m looking for is world-building.  Can you feel the world? There is no scenery yet.  What would you like to see in this scene to help you visualize?

This is a sequel.  For those of you who have read LAST WINTER RED: Does this draw you right back into that world?

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“It’s not every day a man gets to meet his wife. You should be excited.”

Henry smoothed the red cuffs accenting his tapered black shirt.  “I am, Mother. But this is the most important day of my life. I’m a little nervous.”

“Pish.  Today you are just getting married.  Nine months from now, when you validate yourself with your first child—that will be the most important day of your life.” She brushed non-existent lint from his shoulders.

“Of course mother.” Henry held perfect, stiff posture as his mother moved around him, her long red skirt shifting at her ankles as she straightened every seam.

“There.” She stepped back, smiling.  “As perfect as any young Red could be—and so handsome.”

“I’m sure I’m no more handsome than any other, mother.”

She shook her head.  “Nonsense.  You are ten times the Red of any of your siblings.  You’ll be wed highly.  I guarantee it.”

She picked up a pitcher from the table and poured two glasses of water.

“Were you frightened, Mother, on your wedding day?”

“Frightened? No, of course not.  Excited was more the word.  This is the day all Reds are born for—to finally have the opportunity to join society, to add your distinction to the world.  Your father and I validated ourselves on our wedding day, you know.”

Henry bit back his laugh.  “Yes, Ma’am, you’ve told us all many times.”

She handed him a glass.  “None of your siblings have granted our family the prestige of a wedding day conception.  I look forward to good news tomorrow morning.”

“I will do my best, Mother.” He bowed his head.

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The Sunday Snippets Critique Blog Hop is on!

Want to join up? Click here for the rules, and leave a comment to have your name added to the list.  The more the merrier!swish swivel squiggle 2

Click on over to these great writers to check out and critique what they’ve posted!

Note:  Those who have not been participating have been removed.

http://mermaidssinging.wordpress.com/

http://caitlinsternwrites.wordpress.com/

http://ileandrayoung.com

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com

https://jennifermeaton.com/

http://richardleonard.wordpress.com

http://jordannaeast.com

http://itsjennythewren.wordpress.com/

http://wehrismypen.wordpress.com

http://jlroeder.wordpress.com

http://letscutthecrap.wordpress.com/

http://ashortaday.wordpress.com

http://mandyevebarnett.com/

http://www.michellezieglerauthor.com

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Go Littlest Dude! Dealing with a child with behavioral issues: the Total Transformation #8

First of all, I posted something last Wednesday.  If you missed the miracle, please go back and read it.

Before starting lesson five, I need to tell you something. Last week’s miracle was just the beginning. On Friday, my youngest came home with his test scores… 87%, 100%, and 105% (nailed that extra credit question)   Way to go littlest Dude!

There was also a note from the teacher about how horrendous the class was all week.  I flipped over the “Weekly behavior score” sheet, and saw that for the last few weeks he’d received a “1” meaning perfect (where he’d scored in the “bad” 2’s and 3’s normally.)  I asked him if there was trouble in class, and he said, “Yes, everyone was bad but me. I’m a good boy now.”

Hmmm…

I contacted the teacher, who confirmed that he was quiet and polite the entire week while the rest of the class acted inappropriately.  Go Littlest Dude again!

Every day this week, I came home to a quiet house.  My children all came and hugged me at the door, and my husband was smiling.  No chaos. No screaming. (For the most part) Is this what a normal house is like?  I’m not sure, but I like it.

My son’s most common sayings this week:  “Excuse me Mommy”; “Please, Mommy”; and “Yes, Mommy.”  (Wow)

I think now is the most critical time.  It feels like we have our life back, but once in a while I feel a slight push from my littlest (I’m sure he doesn’t even realize that he is doing it) but he is trying to re-gain control. (Like trying to negotiate that bed time again.) I need to be resolved.  So does my husband.  We need to be careful not to slip back into our old back habits just because things are getting better.

I’m also finding it a little hard to get my husband to sit down and listen to the CDs for an hour a week.  I use the “10 tips” on him:  “I’m sorry you’re tired, but this is the time we agreed to listen to the Total Transformation.”  His eyes narrow.  He knows I’m right.  I’m inclined to stop as well, but we need to finish the program.  It’s working, and I want to know everything I need to know to keep it going in the right direction.

Lesson Five: Understanding Faulty Thinking

This lesson is all about how pre-conceived notions and reactions by both the parent and child can undermine everything that you do.  Faulty thinking is when we “decide” our kids have done something wrong before we have all the facts.  This is one of those annoying lessons that let you know you are doing something wrong, but don’t really tell you what to do about it.  The “Homework” is to make notes of times when we see faulty thinking.  I guess the idea is that recognizing it will keep you from doing it.

Onward and Upward.

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Our Journey with the Total Transformation:

Week One post #1

Week Two Post #2 and Post #3

Week Three Post #4

Week Four Post #5

Week Five  Post #6 and Post #7

Week Six (this week) Post #8

Road to Publication #14: Wow! It’s excerpt Time [She quakes with anticipation] Or is that FEAR?

Yay!  I finally have the okay to release an excerpt from my upcoming story Last Winter Red, which will be released December 3rd as part of J.Taylor Publishing’s Make Believe Anthology.

This is super-exciting stuff!

This is the first time I’ve seen my manuscript in a pretty long time, which is a little nerve-wracking, since it’s been in the hands of editors.  I haven’t even approved the finals yet.  **GACK**

Soooo… without further ado, here is the premier of the first 500 words of Last Winter Red.

Enjoy! (This is me, holding my breath)

Four Days Before Spring

Any less than forty-five vials wouldn’t be enough. Emily tucked the crimson cloth around the containers in her basket and continued down the long, stark corridor leading to Terra’s south exit. As usual, the hallway was empty; no one else would be foolish enough to leave the city, especially a few days before spring when the weather was so unpredictable.

The soft patter of footsteps came as her mother rounded the corner. The woman’s red dress stood out from the white walls and gray ceramic tiles, swishing at her ankles until she stopped. Her eyes narrowed, gaze settling on her daughter’s basket.

Emily continued toward the exit. “We’re not having this conversation again, Mother.”

“You can’t keep going out there. It isn’t safe.”

Emily reached the door and unlatched the lock. “I have to. The people outside need this medicine.”

“But what if you catch the disease?”

Emily sighed and released the latch. “I told you they medicate me each time I go to the village. I’ll be fine.”

Black ringlets fell over her mother’s brow as she shook her head. “You’re my oldest daughter. You should be setting an example, not traipsing around outside with the vermin.”

Pulling her crimson cloak over her hair, Emily tucked in her own dark tresses. “These people need my help.”

“You couldn’t care less about those people. It’s that renegade doctor you’re helping. It always has been.”

Emily lowered her gaze. Her mother knew her all too well. “My husband is dead, Mother. I need to find someone else.”

“That is the duty of the scribes. They’ll assign you another.”

“Who? When? I’m twenty-three years old. You already had four children by the time you were my age. If they were going to find another husband for me, they would have done so. I will not spend the rest of my life alone like a sorry Gray.” Emily struggled against tears threatening to break free. “George is a good man … a doctor and a Red. When his work is done, he will come back with me.”

“Did he tell you that?”

Emily blinked. “Not in so many words…”

“You are placing your life in danger for something that may never happen.”

“You taught me it’s our duty as Reds to be fruitful … to support the growth of humanity.” Emily quaked with angry resentment. “I have no children to show to the Council. I am nothing. I need to find a new husband.”

Her mother’s countenance didn’t change, and she offered no words of encouragement.

“I’m going, Mother. And this time, I’m not coming back alone.” Emily pushed the door open. A chill slapped her face.

“What if he’s contracted the disease?”

Emily’s hand tensed on the doorframe. “If he hadn’t been careful, he’d have been dead by now.” She stepped out and slammed the door before her mother could offer further argument.

Whooooosh… Okay, that was me breathing again.

Now I’m cringing. **GACK***

So…. What did you think? 😐

If you liked this, you may want to hop over to see what my lovely and talented co-authors have for you.  They might just have a little excerpt for you to read, too!

http://jabelfield.wordpress.com/

http://jennykellerford.wordpress.com/

http://terrirochenski.blogspot.com/

http://kellysaid.com/

http://lyndaryoung.blogspot.com/

Flash Fiction Friday on Wednesday – The Long Walk

First of all… If you haven’t signed up for Write a Story with me, hop on over and sign up.  Our authors are already plugging away.  What fun!  Sign up here.

Okay… now on to the important business of the day… Flash Fiction… Setting the timer for five minutes.  I have a bad headache, and I’m wondering what I can write with this kind of distraction.  Go…

I ease into the long hallway.  Whiteness blinds me.  Where does it go?  Should I really be here?

I turn back, but the door has closed.  No other path lies before me than the one straight ahead.  Lights swirl, voices of the past berate me.  Was I sad?  No.  But was I ever happy?  Did I do enough?

Three steps further.  The light is blinding.  How far must I go?  How far can I go?

The hallway ends.  The sounds stop.  All but a handle disappears.  I’m compelled to take it, to turn the handle and face what lies behind the door, but terror fills my soul.

I don’t know what lies on the other side.  I gasp for breath, but there is none.  The air disappears.  There is no longer a choice.  I must move on.  I grasp the handle, and turn.

A breeze hits my face.  Terror subsides.

I walk through.

.

(Time:  Four minutes … sans correcting typographical errors.)

Note:  No, I am not contemplating taking that “long walk”, but I did write this with a mild migraine, and the lights are hurting my brain.  That may be where that idea came from.

Mommy to the Rescue AKA “Please Don’t Eat my Frog!” (A True Story)

Yes, this is a true story.

So, we are hanging out by the pool, and my son says, “Mom, there is a snake in the pond.”

“Yeah, okay, are you coming swimming?”

“Yeah, but there’s a snake in the pond.”  He stays near the pond looking down.  “Hey Mom.  The snake’s playing with Lucky.” (Luck is a frog)  There is a short pause, before my son starts screaming.  “Mom!  Mom!  The snake is eating Lucky!”

I run to the pond to see nothing.

“Mom!  I swear!  He grabbed Lucky and dragged him under!”

I waited, and yes, in another minute the snake came up for air, Lucky firmly in his jaws.  Now, all three of my kids are leaning over the pond.  And who needs to figure it out?  MOMMY.

Under Lucky goes again.  “Go get Daddy,”  I say, hoping they’ll all go running.  Only lost one of them, though.  I climb over the fence, and wait.  Splish, the snake come up for air, and “Mommy The Great” swoops down and grabs this sucker by the back of the neck.

I stand up, and pull about four feet of snake out of the water, with the frog firmly locked in its jaws.  Now what the heck do I do?

I shook the snake a little, figuring it would be more afraid of me than hungry for our little frog.  No dice.  It gripped down further, cutting into poor Lucky’s skin.  I watched with horror as the snake arched, and more of Lucky disappeared inside.

My husband arrives and makes a sound akin to a gerbil screaming.  “What do you want me to do?” he asks.

Well, I knew he wasn’t about to take the snake from my hand, and all of my kids are looking at me, while I’m holding this four-foot snake in the process of ingesting a favorite pet.

“Get a knife, and a bag,” I said.

My husband made a face, and left.  I didn’t tell him I was going to hold the snake, and he was going to kill it.  He might have run for the hills.

So, I’m standing there, holding this dern snake, thinking:  It’s not really his fault.  This is just nature, really.  Lucky was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

My youngest son is sobbing.

So … I did what any other good nature-loving mother would do.  I took a deep breath, and

I pried the stinking snake’s jaws open.

(Do you have any idea how long the fangs of a four-foot snake are?)

Lucky fell four feet to the decking with a splat of blood.  Great.  I just almost got bitten, and the frog is already dead.

My husband comes out with a giant Ziploc and a butcher’s knife.  Relief crossed his face when he saw what I’d done.  We slipped the “not too happy” snake in the bag, zipped it up leaving a little air hole, and the boys and daddy drove him a mile or two away to a bigger pond and let him go.

Like I said… It’s not the snake’s fault.  He was just hungry.  But I’d just rather he not eat one of my pets right in front of my kids, thank you.

I go back to the pond to pick up and bury Lucky, and he’s gone.  There’s a trail of blood leading to the pond.

The next day, I went out and saw a little frog on a lily pad, with two HUGE scars on his back.  I walked out slowly, and opened the fence.  By now, all the other frogs have jumped and swam away.  Not Lucky.

I crouched down, and put out my hand.

Do you know… that little frog swam right into it?

I picked him up, and bought him up to my face and he looked at me.  Didn’t jump, didn’t scurry, he just looked into my eyes.

My kids all came running out.  They wanted to hold him, too… but I said no.  Let’s leave him be.  He’s still hurt.

Frogs come and go when you have a pond.  Lucky stayed all season.  Every few days I would walk out, and put my hand in the water, and up he would swim, and I would hold him for a while.

You’re welcome, Lucky.  We love you too.

The Tooth Fairy

I’d like to take a short breather from the writing world just to talk about something simple.

My eight year old lost his first tooth last night.  Big excitement in the Eaton household as the kids got ready for the arrival of the Tooth Fairy.  My husband went to bed early, and Mommy tucked the kids in, and stayed up late working on her computer, as usual.  No rest for the weary writer, or the mother of excited children.

I was thinking after I finally got to bed last night how good my husband has it, although I don’t think he looks at it that way.  He’s a work from home Dad, which is really really hard.  The great thing is though, that he gets to see the kids in the morning before they go to school.  I miss that.  Especially on mornings like this.

I wouldn’t get to talk to my son when he woke up, or see his excited face when he counted out his coins.   I would miss it, like I missed his first steps.

I did get a little bonus, though.  I stepped out of my room this morning ready to go to work, to find my son cuddled up asleep on the floor in the hallway outside his room.  His right hand was resting on a pile of coins.

I still don’t know why he woke in the middle of the night, or why he was in the hallway.  It bought a smile to my face though.

It’s the little things.   He wasn’t awake, but I got to see him, and I know he was excited.  Mommy really needed that.

Amendment:  Omigosh!  He lost another one at school today!  He looks so goofy!

Reconnecting with What’s Really Important

I am about to embark on a long needed vacation. It’s time to relax, and spend some time with my family.  I can’t wait to see the look on my children’s faces when the plane lifts off the ground, or when they see the sunrise from above the clouds for the first time in their lives.

I can’t wait to bring them somewhere where nature is the attraction, not the technology.  I am looking forward to teaching them about another country, another culture, and how people can be so happy when they have so little from our perspective, yet lead such full lives.

For me, it’s time to dig my toes into the sand, and show my children that there are places in the world where the beaches aren’t polluted, and you don’t have to swim between two poles, and there are no boardwalks or loud arcades to drown out the serenity of nature.

I can’t wait to see the looks on the faces of my children (through snorkel masks) when a school of – fish swim right up to them, or when a crab the size of their arm walks across their path in the middle of the night, or when a peacock knocks on the back door asking for a snack.  I can’t wait for them to taste fruit that has been just picked off a tree, or drink from a coconut that was opened up just for them.

Most of all, I just want to get away from all there is to do in my life.  There is not enough time in our busy lives to enjoy each other, any Mommy working hard on getting published hasn’t helped that.  This next week is about re-bonding with my family.

Ire.  Ya Mon.  No Worries.  Jamaica, bring me back to what’s really important… my family.