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August 22, 2011

A la recherche du temps perdus

HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN:  The three h's are Horrified --time is going by so quickly--but Happy to be here today. Isn't it amazing? The crickets are cricking, the dahlias are revealing their colors, the basil is going to seed (if you're not careful) and although I refuse to look carefully, I swear I saw a leaf turning. But if might just be blushing in embarrassment about how quickly the season is changing.

Summer bain So today, we think of the fragrance of Bain De Soleil and coconut oil and remember the sound of the ice cream truck....but wait. There's still the rest of August to go! Hold on to summer...was  it a good one?   

Remember when it was June? What did you plan? Did you do it?

 HANK: June. I know there was June. I know, because I, um, what did I do again?

 HARLEY: I didn’t lose 10 pounds and I didn’t find True Love. I did, however, get my teeth cleaned.

HEATHER: I barely remember June. I know that I had a lot of plans that I didn't see through . . . there were a lot of conventions, and I spent a lot of time thinking that it was the last summer I'd get Chynna home from college, I wanted some quality time with her. The time has all slipped away, and I'm sad. I did get several great occasions with all five of my kids--and my nephew niece in law and the little ones. I'm grateful--even though I didn't get a lot done I intended to do!

HANK: Oh, wait! My dear darling agent sold my new book THE OTHER WOMAN! Hurray hurray hurray. BEST JUNE EVER. Or maybe that was May. Either way. It was at least two months of goodness.


Summer dentist HARLEY: See June; replace teeth cleaning with root canal.

HEATHER: I dimly remember it, yes, it came and went.

HANK: Oh, July I have down pat. I was working on a big big big project with a deadline of June 20, or something like that, so I worked ALL THE TIME, all the way through July 4th dinner party and the grandkids visit and several outings which I did NOT attend. I made the deadline, hurray, good for me.  And the project--is now on hold. (I got paid. Fine. I'm sure it will all work out for the best.)


HARLEY:See July; replace root canal with new crown on Tooth #30.

HANK: Revisons, revisions. I love revisions. I do. I really do. I'm serious! I really do. The book is getting better and better. If I do say so myself...and I'm almost finished. Very excited. And our dahlias are exploding. Very nice August. And still underway, imagine that!

 HEATHER: It's August now, and I'm in a panic, of course. Derek goes into his last year of nursing school, Chynna goes into her last year at CalArts, and I'm frantically trying to finish everything for our benefit workshop, writers for New Orleans. And of course everyone involved with me on the project is also panicking at the end of summer . . . .

What are you proud of?

HEATHER: Always proud of my kids.Summer midtown-963

 HARLEY: I took my kids on a great New York City adventure. They turned out to be natural subway riders. I could not have been more proud.

HANK: Okay, if we're talkin' kids...my grandson Eli is adorable, brilliant, and at 8 years old, he told me the BEST idea for a YA book. Truly, it's so good I can't even reveal it to you . I have to call him,soon,  to see how it thinks it should end.

What did you learn this summer?

HEATHER: That when you really see a problem, grab it at the onset!

 HARLEY: I learned I’m a lot happier when I’m playing the piano and painting with acrylics on canvas (not at the same time) even though I’m not that great at either one.

HANK:  I re-learned that no deadline is impossible. You just do what you can, and be done. (It happens all the time on Project Runway, right?) 

Favorite food of the summer?

Sushi HEATHER: Sushi. Chynna is a sushi girl, so we do lots of sushi when she's home. Seasons 52!

HANK:  Chicken salad. I know it's weird, but I never liked chicken salad. Suddenly, I do. Yummy chicken, yumy mayonnaise, yummy celery, and grapes.  Now I have a new mantra: "Know what would make this better? Chicken salad!" 

HARLEY: Frosted circus animal cookies.

Favorite drink of the summer?

HANK: Palmyras: vodka, mint, lime juice, simpe syrup. Also! Those little bottles of diet Coke? You can freeze them, til they're slushy. Oh, delicious! Just be careful openign them, they splatter. And beware of forgetting you're put one in the freezer.

Summer tea HEATHER: Of the summer, and always. Ice tea.

 HARLEY: Lipton Green Ice Tea, Berry flavored.

Favorite outfit of the summer?

HARLEY: White Dockers shorts; Cole Haan patent leather flip flops.

HANK:  I found this dress, I had purchased it last summer, and it wasnt right, but suddenly, shades of chicken salad, now it is. It's khaki, and wraps, and looks like a sleeveless trench coat. I've worn it about five million times this summer.

 HEATHER: As always . . . black.

 Favorite book/movie/tv show?

HEATHER: Shameless, great show, love it! Book--I'm reading a bio on Humphrey Bogart. Movie . . . I saw several that I liked a lot. My favorite . . . The Conspirator. Brilliantly told, historically excellent, Robin Wright just as I might have imagined the character to be.

HARLEY: Nancy P.’s The Scent of Rain & Lightning/Pirates of the Caribbean Whatever Number They’re Up To/Buffy reruns

HANK:  Oh, we got hooked on The Killing. And Zen, which was just okay, except for the third one, which was great.  Movie, let's see..oh, we finally saw the King's Speech. Yes, yes, we're SO behind. Happy that Project Runway is back! Books? I'm an Edgar judge. Nuf said.

What will you DEFINITELY do different next summer?

 HEATHER: Ohhhhh . . . been trying to fix me for years. I will try not to pull out my back again. It really hurts! Stretching, yes, stretching.

 HARLEY: Lose 10 pounds; find True Love.

HANK: Read while floating on a raft on the swimming pool.  It's so relaxing..and I didn't do it t all.Summer float

 What will you DEFINITELY do the same way next summer?

 HEATHER: Try my hardest to see all the people I love!

 HARLEY: Get my teeth cleaned.

HANK:  Finish my next book! Now all I have to do,sigh,  is start it.

How about you, Tarts?  Any summer memories, or resolutions? Favorites you can point the rest of us to--while there's still time?

BREAKING NEWS: Hank says:  I just had dinner with Carla Neggers (gazpacho, scallops with corn salsa, peach pavlova) She's such an amazing friend of the Tarts--and in honor of the publication of her newest novel of suspense SAINT'S GATE (which comes out tomorrow) she'll send a signed copy to one lucky commenter!



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My God, we packed a lot in -- and summer's only 2/3 over. However, my kids start school on Wednesday. Yes, Wednesday. Can you believe it? I'm up to my eyeballs in school supplies.

I promised myself I'd actually have some nice hot days of sitting out in the late afternoon sun. Other than generally working too many afternoons, I only did the sitting in the late afternoon once, but then again, we haven't had much of the 'hot late afternoon sun' here at the chilly beach community. Yet.

I did start watching the totally bizarre 'Misfits' on Hulu, thanks to it being mentioned here this past week. Thank you?

Um, Harley, you know I respect you and love your books and think your wisdom is wise in most circumstances. But, do you see a teeny, tiny correlation between your summer of dental work and frosted circus animal cookies?? Anyway, all the best on finding your true love: maybe even before next summer.

I knew it. Summer is over. If it's September in 10 days it is over. I just saw my neighbor walking her three little girls to school last week. Summer is over. Boys are wearing skinny jeans? Girls are going retro? Retro is the 80s?

I want my summer back. We don't even have leaves to turn yellow here in Tucson. Fall means heavy traffic approaching from the north. I have to make a slushy coke right away before it's too late. Thanks for the tip, Hank.

Today was one of the first hot days Vancouver has had, how the heck can summer be over? It hit 80F today, woo hoo.

Since it has been such a cool summer I have enjoyed wearing a sunhat less often, I have enjoyed sweating less and taking naps using a blanket. Not so bad after all.

School starts today (the roads are going to be jammed again), it'll reach 102 (that's street temp; add in heat index, and it's 110!), and boy oh boy am I EVER ready for Fall.

I looooove you guys. And chicken salad.

I hate summer almost as much as I hate Christmas. I don't wanna think about summer, and I sure as heck don't wanna think about Christmas.

(pulling off grumpy pants now)

I've met Carla. She is fun and generous and a great writer. Hi Carla! *waves at Carla*

Hey, I'm sure Carla is waving backk..shoe's beginning a book tour today, in Savannah! Anyone there?

I know--back to school! Continuing the tradition of back to school shopping, I got new..makeup. :-0

June: Discovered they lied about my property line when I bought the house. Had to move the big, honkin' shed I inadvertently put on neighbors property.
July: Sweltered, sweated, and boiled in the heat wave.
August: Fell into the Chesapeake, bunged up my legs, and swallowed my body weight in dirty, briny water.
...and the summer's not over. Can't wait to see what's next.

To me, summer means one thing: Mule racing! For me, that's True Love.

Actually, the temps have been below average most of this season, so it's hardly felt like summer at all. I'm already dreading the idea of another miserable winter like the last one. And the mule season is almost over! *sob*

I planned to go on a diet. I really did. But.....too much chicken salad. (A good chicken salad is an art form. Bad chicken salad is disgusting.)

What a realy hate about summer is the shoes. My feet are killing me. I can't wait to get back into my clogs.

Hi, Carla! I'm trying to figure out how many years we've known each other and the number, I think, starts with a "3." Ye gods. How old is Zack?? I remember when he was born.

enjoyed summer ,read more than my usual 30 books a month and got a lot of charity knitting done at the same time.
thanks for having this giveaway

First half of June spent recovering from bad reaction to Prednesone and the second half volunteer commitments involving children and youth.

July brought more volunteering, but this time for the local Community Day. Other intense July events included the planning and hosting of my nephew and his wife's baby shower; letting my backyard be taken over by 10 teenagers for a 3 day camp out for the church youth group; and planning, prepping, cooking and serving at our church's monthly Free Community Dinner.

August thus far has been great for members of my family. In the last two weeks: My youngest first cousin bought her first home; my niece's husband was and is part of the viral video by the Air Force Rock Band Sidewinder.
Devin LaRue, my nephew-in-law, is the guitarist on the left. He's a songwriter, arranger, performer, with a degree in music composition.
The biggest August news is my daughter finally went out and got herself a full time job. She is now the office manager at a local funeral home. She's happy. Now all we have to do is find her a boyfriend.

For me spring and summer is all about the garden. By late June every part of our evening meal comes fresh from the garden except for the meat. I've spent the past few weeks canning, freezing and pickling our garden produce and I will continue to do so at least for the next two weeks. Today we will can tomato juice and make some peach jam. I need to get my rear in gear and get next door to my parents as my father has been phoning and asking me where I am.

Ye gods, Jerry. No fun.

The kids in the country near our farm had to go back to school on August 11th! Talk about a short summer. But I guess since most of the roads are steep, twisty and barely a lane and a half, any bad winter weather makes for major snow days, which must be made up.

I accomplished a lot this summer, including getting my teeth cleaned. :-) Visited all three daughters: Miami, Boulder, and northern Michigan. Went trail riding in Wyoming, to the rodeo in Cody. Took a three-day adult riding camp that incorporated yoga and pushed my riding ability, not to mention fitness level, into new territory. And harvested a massive amount of produce from a little bitty garden at the farm. And canned a bunch of it. Hosted Al_S and his lovely wife here in Cincinnati, while they were on a tour of the country, stopping and visiting other backbloggers. Spent an afternoon with Nancy Martin, and had a sort of lunch with Nancy Pickard--the highlights of the whole summer!

This will probably go down in my personal history as one of my most productive summers ever. Can't imagine ever managing this much activity again!

Wow! You guys make me feel like such a slug, or a piker or something! I've been taking care of my 9 month old grandson and 7 year old granddaughter. In my free time I have to cut the grass that won't stop growing!
Still looking for true love, too!

No, no no no! Summer is NOT over. I can pass on the hot weather though.

Busy summer here. Still haven't fully recovered from the Royal Wedding. That one may take a full year to digest.

Blue skies in Pittsburgh today as they fix the dormers in my office. Which is good.

Hi Carla! My Mom is your newest and biggest fan - along with her beach crew. I swear if you show up on 122nd Street in Stone Harbor, NJ, they will line the street with rose petals, or palms, or whatever tribute you desire!

Summer is almost over--and the expected is here. Today, we're watching Irene. Miami has been pretty lucky since "the summer of storms"--Katrina, Rita, and Wilma--and didn't take the massive blow that hit the Gulf. But, getting ready now to head to NOLA, I'm sad to say that I'm glad it looks like she's coming more in my direction, although we always hope that the storms blow out into the Atlantic. Oye. Certainly, wishing no ill will on anyone!

Hi, Carla!

And Laraine, re those Circus Animal Frosted Cookies and my dental work, I was about to cry, "busted!" but upon further consideration, I think I'll go with that old favorite of scientists, "we can see a correlation, but we cannot prove causation."

I am, however, flossing more.

This was a very chaotic summer for me and a lot of my family and friends here. Good things that happened: First ever long vacation with my husband, which included a visit with Holly Gault in gorgeous Inverness, CA; son-in-law returned safe and sound from deployment on board the USS Enterprise; grandson turned 1; got to visit with family and friends.

Bad things that happened: Broke a crown, which revealed that the underlying bit left over from the root canal was decayed (but wonderful dentist fixed things so I don't have to think about $4K worth of implants at the moment); mucho stress from too much time living with too many people in too small a space.

More good things that happened: Ran away from home with hubby and have set up housekeeping in a downtown apartment; completed another contract project; marked the 1-year anniversary of my PeeWee Karate Program (that's karate for 3-5-year-olds).

I'm eagerly awaiting an end to heat and humidity. But that won't do a lot of good until the fires in the Dismal Swamp go away -- right now, the air outside is unbreathable. :( Please send rain our way!

In June, we got both girls through Summer Camp.

July included family vacation on one big birthday.

August has the second big birthday and school starts later this week. School supplies are multiplying. But, it feels as if school started earlier this month because of Cheer Camp, and Team Fundraisers and long practices. The actual first day of school is almost a technicality.

The 7 day forecast only predicts one day of 100+ for this week. Won't be long 'til we're mulching leaves with the mower. (I HATE raking!)

June: wow, i too can hardly remember what happened in June!
July: had 12 family members at my house for a big reunion which we promised each other to do when my Dad passed away in January! It was 5 days and lots of fun.
August: Best thing ever happened!!! My husband and I found out we'll be grandparents in February! So excited!!!

Teresa, that's wonderful! Congratulations!

I do see a thread of "who can remember June?" here. We're funny, huh?

Undine, mule racing? Please..a little more about that? (And have you read Edith Wharton's Custom of the Country? Because of Undine, not because of mules.)

Bad chicken salad? Because the chicken is bad? Or it's too mayonnaise-y? Or it has weird stuff in it?

What I miss most about summer when it' s gone: bare feet, cotton t- shirts, cropped pants.

Hey kids, I'll be live blogging hurricane Irene this Thursday! Guess who's in florida!

June...? costumed Clark Gable, Allan Ladd, Barbara Stanwick and Walter Winchell.
July...? costumed The Pelican Playhouse's Summer Recital.
August...? costuming The Fantastics.
All summer...? working on lines - music - choreography for The Fantastics.
Looking for a job and as of last Friday looking for a new boyfriend.
He broke my heart not to mention used up probably my last ten years of looking attractive.
How can you love someone soooooo much and now, thru no fault of your own, feel like slashing their tires and wanting them to burn in hell?
I didn't lose any weight either.

Oh, hell, Xena. May his hair fall out and his tummy sag.

Oh, Xena! I'm so sorry. Hands you the knife.

Xena, oh. Want us to all come to your house, and en masse, let him know it's not a good plan to mess with darling you?

And that"last ten years" thing is wrong, but you'll have to realize that on your own. But I promise. You're wrong.

Summer wasn't too fun for me, I had my grandmother and dad pass away, I did get to sneak away to the RWA for a day, that was about the most fun I had this summer.

Can't wait for this book to get in my hands! Been counting the days! 1 More DAY! YAH!

I had a very bad summer, spent most of it with my mother, which I am thankful for and Blessed to have been able to be there..but she left this world to her mansion in the sky and I miss her...Thankful for all our time together!

I live in one of the oldest areas in South Florida--house is from 1925. Problem is, electric seems to think it is still from 1925, plumbing, etc.

The first wind goes through and the electric is gone, and the streets are flooded.

The good thing is that the house has stood through some of the worst storms to rip through the area.

Thank God, though, we're not a "bowl." And we can pray we don't have a repeat of Andrew.

Xena! I am very happy to hate him on your behalf. Until instructed otherwise. How dare he?

This has been a glorious summer as I have doting on my new little grandchild. He is the sweetest summer treat that I can think of.
Eating mounds of tuna salad to make myself believe, that yes, this time I will be healthier. However, succumbing to IHOP's berry crepes has won me over a few times. I tell myself ""What can it hoit?"
Myself usually reminds me that moderation in all things is a good thing.

Need more late-night walks along the beach.

Sure, a couple of berry crepes can't hurt.

OH, a grandchild, Marie! Wonderful!

Kerry, Dismal Swamp!! Do you live in Modoc or Lake County? We could be almost neighbors.

My husband had surgery where they took a piece of bone out of five vertibre (bad spelling and the spell checker won't help) in his neck. The recovery has been brutal so I have no great summer stories. But he's finally showing signs of recovery so we may snowbird a few weeks this winter.

June was a very busy month for me with preparation for a family reunion, recruiting and coordinating volunteers for the Walk to Defeat ALS (We're at $275,000 to date). My 12 year old great niece volunteered again this summer so it was fun spending one-on-one time with her until she went back to school last week.

July I spent catching up on household and yard chores. I also attended the funeral for the 10th family memeber I've lost to ALS. Two days after the funeral her daughter and I journeyed to Miami for our 4th year of the pre-fALS study. That is always an experience which includes such fun things as EMG, nerve conduction tests, 13 vials of blood, brain MRI ... We did manage to have some fun though. It was the first year the study was conducted in Miami so we tried to see a little of the city. We had lots of good Cuban food, loved the crazy hotel shuttle drivers and generally had a good time.

Best part of July I signed up for Bouchercon so I can't wait to see many of you there.

August seems to be de-clutter time - mind, body, paper, clothes. I call this my "cleanliness is next to godliness" time hopefully the mood will last until I have all the above chores completed.

Most of the summer plans have happened as planed, or at least 90% right. Managed to squeeze a visit from some of the Ohio cousins and Molly and my 30th high school reunion into the same weekend. Did get a hug from the hottest girl in the 9th grade. Apparently the "chome dome" hair cut is the class craze. It does hide the receding hairline well. The Ohio cousins didn't freak out totally except that they sort of baked in the sun.

August is the big month. We just returned from a long weekend in Kansas City. The princesses had a blast and I will still be able to pay the rent after a visit to the American Girl store. As several of you regulars are recent grand parents, American Girl is slang for $100 is not that much for a good doll. The father behind us in line dropped between $300-400 on his two princesses. You have been warned.

The princesses get a bonus two weeks of vacation. The school district made an ambitious construction schedule and the snow this past winter did not. This morning, shows the new gym well short of ready for its first jump shot. It will be ok.

The girls did get an extended visit with their out of town uncle. He spent a few weeks in town to take care of his mother who joined the "hip crowd" (hip replacement) for the second time. She is moving pain free and walking straight.

Was blessed with not one, but two visits with Elaine. Am now waiting semi-patiently for her next book in November. Better still, I haven't had to explain any of the words
Auntie Elaine" uses like "bimbo" to the princesses yet.

Now it is back to work on all of the stuff that built up while I was having ribs in KC.

Carla is a wonderful person and a great writer. Met with her for drinks at the RWA this year. had a blast.

Alan, I made my girls save up the money for their own AG dolls. The older one saved up half for Samantha, and I paid for the rest of it, and made her a wardrobe for Christmas. After that, she had to pay for any dolls she wanted. (She was in first grade, by the way. Grandpa helped her a little bit.) Then when the younger one wanted Molly (rhymes with her name, Holly), she got the same deal: save up for half. The bonus was that it made them take good care of those wonderful, but pricey dolls. Who still live at my house.

Diana, $275,000! Wow, that's impressive.

I'm also hoping to attend Bouchercon this year.

June - almost killed myself with my first Zumba class.

July - Went to book signing/friends get-together in Boonsboro, MD and saw Meg Cabot, Deanna Raybourn, and Nora Roberts, among others. Saw Keith Urban and got to drool up close as he came into the stands and played 3 rows away from our seats. Gained weight so my summer clothes don't fit. Sweltered, sweltered, sweltered, in ungodly hot weather, and prayed for rain.

August - Had a nice birthday, got poison ivy all over my face and then in a few other places, found out my triglycerides almost quadrupled since last year, got what I wished for and received so much rain it's broken monthly records for this area. I get my teeth cleaned on 8/31. :)

On to September!

Summer, it was summer? It's hard for a displaced Northerner, (who has been here more then half her life), to tell where summer begins and ends in South Florida. One hot day just blends into the next for me. But, I swear I kiss the ground in those winter months where my relatives are shoveling snow!
This last few months have been interesting. I have edited and re-edited one of my books up the yin yang, and now have an editor friend, yup, editing.
I gave up my facebook game addiction. It kinda snuck up on me when I was trying to zone my DH's constant prattle out. It worked great. But I kept burning dinner or leaving water running. I'd waste hours. So I decided I was addicted and stopped cold turkey. (Is there a task somewhere in this blog? Just sayin')
I have to stay away from the stuff or I'll be one of those skeletons hanging onto a laptop. So after my epiphany I got back to my next WIP and edits.
A trip to Vermont with relatives was also and interesting event this summer. I never saw so many lazy people in a room at one time. All talking at the same time, and they all know it all! So there you have my summer. Now if we get a hurricane I'll have heart failure. As I listen to the sound of distant thunder I wonder, do I have a copy of my insurance policy???

Read a lot, worked my hours, dealt with insurance companies. I live south of San Francisco on the coast. We are still waiting for summer. Very gray this year. I love Chicken salad with grapes in it. Root canal is an ouch! and Children and grandchildren are a delight. And American Girl dolls are a grandparent's duty ;)

Work. Volunteer. Oral Surgeon. Having it hammered at me again why I don't like July (this time, my great-aunt passed away). Birthday with friends, and being re-reminded that I am the most un-Mexican Mexican in history (allergic to onions & peppers). Work harder as another admin is on medical leave, so now supporting my group of 58 plus her group of #? Trip to Boonsboro with friends. Work. Volunteer. My typical bi-weekly vampire hook-up (Red Cross donation). And sadly, having to help my beloved Bonnie-dog across the Rainbow Bridge earlier this month....

No vacation. No beach. No tan-lines.

Vanetta and Phyllis -- condolences. Such a sad time.

So sorry to hear of the losses of loved ones suffered by so many. There are really no words to offer, other than to say I'm thinking of you all.

I must be like many of you - I don't particularly remember June, for some odd reason. (I'd like to think it was because I was working so hard.)

We lost a beloved aunt in July. The good thing to come out of that is that we "girl" cousins have decided to get together with each other periodically so that we don't lose contact with each other. Our first gathering will be tomorrow night, at the home of the cousin whose mom died.

Also in July - one of my sisters came to spend a few days with me, and we got together with our other two sisters - the one who is in a nursing home, and the one who lives in another part of CT. (We need to get to see our one and only brother at some point - I do miss him so much!)

I had my teeth cleaned in July.

I'm taking a vacation day on Thursday to get together with a couple of friends across the Sound on Long Island. (Hurray! We might have thunder storms; I don't care. I just want to see my friends.)

I'll be off from work again next week. On Monday I'm having a filling redone. (Is there something about summers and dental work?)At the end of the week, I'll be visiting with family again. I'm going to try to fit in a couple of medical check-ups, too, at some point.

I will of course be doing extra reading and I have put Carla Neggers on my TBR list!

What is Zumba?

And wow. Laura in PA, you have seen the A-listers! SIgh--poison ivy and Keith Urban..from the ridiculous to the sublime..


Mule racing cannot possibly be described in a way that'd do it justice. It's sort of a cross between the thoroughbreds and roller derby. But with bigger ears.

I know of the Wharton novel, but I actually took "Undine" from the Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué novel by that name. Poe admired it a great deal, and wrote a very curious review of the book in 1839.

Zumba is a new workout craze that consists of salsa-ish dancing. My class is an hour long, and it kicks my butt.

Busy summer!
June: one contest entered (finalist so far!); one submission to famous author for crit (thankyou Brenda Novak Auction); one on-line writer's course; started new job; signed up for Seattle conference & entered pitch contest; Judged one contest, two categories.
July:big rewrite opening 3 chapters and synopsis;one contest entered; signed up to judge one category; big transfer in new job.
Aug: 2nd change in new job - training begins this week; rewriting rest of book underway, plan to finish by Sept 1.
hmmm, seem to be winding down, must wind back up!

Chicken Salad, bare feet and daily beach walks all make summer wonderful!

Great reading the comments as I stop in Atlanta en route to Savannah. Nancy, we're do a good catchup chat!'

KC, wow. You are amazing.

Undine, off to google! And mule racing--well, someday.

Zumba, huh? I remember aerobic dancing, which I LOVED, and did a TV story about, for which I was teased endlessly because I'm so uncoordinated. I signed up for the class, and was devoted--until I got a stress fracture.

We had an amazingly busy summer, but I wouldn't have traded a minute.
June = trip to Europe.
July = catch up at work after being gone for 1/2 of June (plus multiple kids' camps)
August = week at OC NJ
Lots of hanging with friends for the kids, too.


A couple of friends take Zumba at the local senior center (minimum age for membership: 55) because the pace is a teeny bit slower than the pace at a regular Zumba class. They tell me that they're pretty winded, though, at the end of the class! I'd love to take a class myself but I'm already giving enough of my money to orthopedic professionals. (Do you think that you and I might possibly be sisters? Cousins, at the very least?)

Deb, I hope so!! xoxo In fact, we shall make it be so!

Xena, time for a voodoo doll? Nah, that pesky rule of three . . . better let karma handle him . . . I think there might be a reason I don't date -- we sent to many of the good ones of my demographic to Vietnam . . .
School has been in session two weeks here, which is unnatural and should be illegal.

Best decision of the summer, buying a CSA share. I had no idea veggies could be so good! . . . and since I won't waste them and have therefore been eating less junk, I am wearing clothes I haven't been able to zip in years (which takes away the motivation to get rid of stuff I haven't worn. . . see, I CAN use it again ;-)

Zumba is a bit much for me, but I love the aqua-aerobics so much that I now teach it (my "fun little job"), and now I've heard that there is aqua-zumba! I taught a big class today because one Y is closed and only one other teacher is teaching at our Y this week (between regular sessions). New students said I'd worked them really hard, "You killed me." I avoided P.E. in school, now I'm killing people with my workout? The world is so funny!

I am so sorry for all those who suffered losses this summer. Losing a loved one hurts, no matter what the age, the illness, or even when the pain level has reached a point where you know its better that they're at peace.

Zumba is what I say I'm going to start doing every day.

Xena, a pox on his house! I hope he realizes too late what he has lost.

June I was finishing up a back to work kinesiology program, only problem was it exhausted me so much it has taken most of the rest of the summer to recuperate. Nope, did not return to work. Next week is a visit to a rheumatologist to see if I have arthritis in all the places that hurt so much.

I did have my teeth cleaned in July, I have a tooth that my dentist says needs a crown and am eating carefully to avoid getting it done.

Wait, it's not still June? Can I have a do-over? I completely lost the summer in a mad dash to edit a manuscript. Missed June. Missed July. Sent in the story on August 1. I'm relishing every single August day. My go to outfit this summer was grey converse sneakers, yoga pants, and a red T-shirt. Yep. Every day. Because I rarely left the house when people could actually see me. But Harley? I had my teeth cleaned too.

TV fare? All the light cable dramas: White Collar, The Glades, Royal Pains, Suits, Memphis Beat. Drama junk food. Love it.
Food? This is why I want a do-over. I'm very sad I missed corn on the cob season and the cream puffs at the Wisconsin State Fair. Managed to consume a few watermelons though (my fave.)

Next summer: Fall in love. Have an actual, real vacation on a beach somewhere if only for a few days. Read stacks and stacks of books with abandon.

But I'm pretty excited about this autumn. Fun conference coming up in St. Louis, family visits, and my book release on 11/1. Bring it on!

Hey, maybe Xena could get that voodoo doll from Rocelle--her Who Do Voodoo comes out Nov 1! But I agree with Mary. Karma will out.

That ten pound thing.
Mine is more than ten pounds.
But, hm . . . .

Maybe a nice contest between us all next summer, and we can see who really makes his/her goals!

Doesn't Ramona do the voodoo thing, too?

Just sayin'.

I don't remember June. July brought heart tests and surgery to have a pacemaker implanted. I also had to put my 16-year-old cat to sleep. August has brought better health and two new felines - a 6-year-old calico and a 7-week-old kitten. Things are looking up!

Oh, and doing endless reading. Finished Ken Follett's Fall of Giants in a week. It was great. And have finished several mysteries by authors here.

Nancy JO..we are thinking of you! YOu have two lucky kitties now...xo

Xena, he didn't take your last beautiful years, there are more to come (which will become clear after the tears, anger, etc. subside). So sorry he didn't have the good sense to keep loving you.

Harley, causality--good one. But, now I have to admit, it is time for my dental check-up, which I keep putting off. Maybe I need to check on a new dental insurance program. Or get a new dentist. Or get over being a coward. Just because I don't do frosted animal cookies doesn't mean I'm a dental angel.

Zumba rocks, especially when the leader has a sense of humor and reminds you to have fun more than trying to get every step right. Look for 'Zumba Gold' classes first, if there's any question of fitness or endurance . . . .

Xena, baby, there are many uses for that corkscrew of yours. Surely I don't have to remind you that it makes short work of a tire.

Xena, you can have my old service revolver.

I had so many plans for the summer. Mostly though, I wanted to feel the sun on my face and relax at the POOL as often as possible. But every time I even thought the P word, it started to rain. And todays became tomorrows and the tomorrows strung together like a necklace until now when Summer is done. I went only once and that was just for a few hours...but August aint all over (still a few days) and I am still determined. I just can't say-think-or breath the P word. Now if only Hurricane Irene and the Solstice Fates will comply. Sigh.

Favorite drink: Sangria
Favorite movie: Fright Night...though I also liked Midnight in Paris.
Favorite book: Becoming Marie Antoinette
Favorite tv: True Blood, So You Think You Can Dance, & Sex & the City reruns.

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