Friday, October 31, 2008

Carving Pumpkins?

Want to know how to carve a pumpkin?  I found a really good how-to-carve-tutorial on the web.  Just click here.  

And let me know if your pumpkin looks like his!  :-)

Now--please forgive some more thoughts about politics.  I've honestly tried not to focus too much on the issue, but I can't help speaking out when I feel strongly about something. 

I'm thinking about doing something different this year for trick or treat.  When the kids come to my house, I'll look in their bags.  If they have been hard at work and collected more than 25 pieces of candy, I'll tell them they owe me ten pieces so I can deliver them to all the kids who, for whatever reason, didn't come out to gather goodies. 

And when they look at me like I've lost my marbles, I'll tell them that's Senator Obama's idea of trick or treat.  
Will I really do it? Of course not, the trick or treaters are children, and I don't expect them to know how government works. 

So how do I explain all those voters who should understand how the system works? 


Thursday, October 30, 2008

The Night-Blooming Cereus Blooms Again

Some of you may remember me talking about how last summer (2007), I stayed up until 3 a.m. one night to watch a plant bloom.  I had just planted some night-blooming cereus, and one of them had a bloom--and I was determined to see the flower.  The NBC, you see, blooms at night and then fades away by sunrise--so if you don't see the flower at night, you don't see the flower.  

Fortunately, my plants this year (the ugliest plants you've ever seen, and they have only seemed to thrive under my neglect), put forth several blooms, and they've been in full flower by nine p.m.--so no more all-night vigils for me.  Last night I had TWO blossoms at once, and pulled out the camera.  And so, without further ado, I present pictures of my night-blooming cereus. 

Here's a link to a web site with more info on this fascinating plant.  I keep mine outdoors, so I'm not sure how they'd do in cooler climes . . . but you're welcome to try.  :-)


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I've Been Thinking . . . dangerous, I know.

The other day hubby looked at me and said, "Why are you on this politics kick all of a sudden?"  I looked at him as if he'd lost his marbles, then I tried to explain:  "It's . . . it's like every four years, America stands up and takes a look at her values, and then looks at her candidates, and tries to match them up.  And every four years I'm amazed at how far values are slipping." 

Maybe it's because I'm unemployed at the moment and I have more time to think.  I prefer to believe, though, that the Lord is bringing a lot of thought-provoking stimuli into my life at once.  There's the election, of course.  And the fact that the major candidates are hanging out in my backyard.  And this past weekend Netflix happened to send me EXPELLED, Ben Stein's documentary about the lack of scientific freedom in this country (you mention Intelligent Design in scientific research, and you're likely to find yourself blacklisted and out of a job.)  

 The hubby, who volunteers in the public schools, keeps coming home and telling me that so many teachers are horrified by the lack of respect the kids show--they're undisciplined and vulgar and so unruly that a lot of good teachers are ready to quit.  And I've been reading a book by a young man who once called himself a Christian, but now is a convert to atheism via Richard Dawkins (The God Delusion) and believes that religion is the solace of irrational fools. 

And it occurs to me that the big picture behind all of this is that our country--indeed, the "intelligentsia" of the world--is slipping from agnosticism into atheism.  What really concerns me is that I see many people who should know better riding that liberal train--supporting pro-abortion candidates, claiming a belief in macro-evolution, disdaining the validity of the Scriptures, and reserving their "religious activities" for weekends.  If we Christians don't cling to the Truth, who will? 

Why are the kids in school so undisciplined and disrespectful today?  Could it be because we took God out of the classroom and the curriculum, thus taking away the chief object of human respect?  

Why is marriage considered a temporary state? Could it be because we no longer obey the vows we took, and we no longer believe in the God who witnessed those vows?  Could it be that marriage is no longer a sacred union between a man and a woman, but between any two willing parties?  How long before people start wanting to marry their pets?  

Why do we find ourselves hopeless?  Could it be because we no longer believe in a divine purpose for life and an afterlife to come? 

Why do we no longer weep for aborted babies?  Could it be because life has been cheapened and we no longer see the image of God in every tiny beating heart? 

Why do scientists seriously find it easier to believe that life began with "piggybacking crystals" or aliens who "seeded" the planet than with God who authored life and gave us his word? 

When asked what he would say to God after death (and delusion), Richard Dawkins quoted another atheist (and I'm paraphrasing):  "I would ask him why he made himself so hard to find." 

But evidence of God is not hard to find. Remember when your Mom used to come into the room, look around, and say, "Who made this mess?"  Deterioration may cause a mess, but it takes an intelligent being to create ORDER.  

People "know the truth about God because he has made it obvious to them. For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Though everything God made, they can clearly see his invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.  Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools"  (Romans 1:19-22). 

I have a feeling that some of the books I'll be writing in the future will contain very simple and basic truths:  we have eternal souls.  Supernatural powers exist. Even the animal kingdom bears witness to the Creator.  

The world has so turned its back on truths that used to be self-evident that I'll need to reintroduce those truths one step at a time. 


Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Knitting and Crocheting

Now that the days are growing cooler and shorter, I've felt this urge to pull out the knitting needles and crochet hooks.  The other night I crocheted a scarf in the time it took to watch a movie, and though the scarf is a little non-rectangular, it'll do.  (Took me a while to find my rhythm again). 

I found this website that features some interesting creations of like-minded knitters and crocheters--I particularly like the pink bunny that can be seen from outer space.  And I seem to remember an octopus from my childhood--with braided legs.  Anyone else have one of those?  

In any case, enjoy.  Maybe you'll be inspired to create one of these on one of these upcoming winter nights. 


Monday, October 27, 2008

She looks even hotter in person . . .

. . . so said Alec Baldwin.  :-)  And he was right.  I snapped dozens of pictures at the McCain-Palin rally on Sunday, and I don't think I snapped a bad one of Sarah.  (You can click on these to enlarge them.) 

If you'd like to look at ALL of the pictures, you can access them here.  

My girlfriend and I got up early on Sunday morning and left the house before sunrise.  Unlike last week, when we couldn't even get IN the rally, we were among the first in line and managed to get places standing at the "fence" that runs along the stage.  Only problem was, we had to stand and wait from about 7:00 a.m. until after noon . . . with lots and lots of people pressing in on us.  

But hearing Sarah was wonderful.  Elizabeth Hasselbeck of THE VIEW gave her a rousing introduction, and then Sarah talked about all the things I hold dear--a free economy, relief from taxation, a strong military, finishing the job in Iraq, John McCain's honor and valor in serving his country, special needs children, etc.  And, LOL, she mentioned her clothes--and proudly informed us that she was wearing an outfit from her favorite consignment shop back in Alaska.  

The crowd was warm and supportive . . . and I only hope America comes through to support a true American hero who values human life, godly principles, and a conservative approach to the 

Don't forget to peek at my Facebook photo album if you'd like to see more pictures.  And thanks for dropping by! 


Sunday, October 26, 2008

Hallmark to air Sequel to "The Note"

Here's a press release from the Hallmark Channel: 


Genie Francis and Ted McGinley Reprise Their Roles

Hallmark Channel has greenlit production of the original movie "Taking a Chance on Love," the sequel to the network's highly rated 2007 original holiday movie, "The Note," to begin in November in Toronto and to air on the network in January 2009. Genie Francis ("General Hospital") and Ted McGinley ("Hope & Faith") are attached to reprise their roles.

In "The Note," newspaper columnist Peyton MacGruder (Francis) took viewers on a journey of hope and inspiration as she traveled the country to find the intended recipient of an anonymous note found at the site of an airplane crash. As the story unfolds, Peyton finds moral support from her longtime colleague, King Danville (McGinley), with whom she shared a flirtatious-but-professional relationship. In "Taking a Chance on Love" Peyton investigates a reader's letter which unfolds into a story of lost love and gives her insight into her own life and the risk one must take to fall in love again.

"Taking a Chance on Love" is a Hallmark Channel presentation in association with Lightworks Pictures (an Odyssey Networks company) and Muse Entertainment. The movie is executive produced by Joel S. Rice ("Shredderman Rules") and William Spencer Reilly ("The Note") and produced by Steve Solomos ("Nature of the Beast"). Maura Dunbar is executive in charge of production. Douglas Barr ("To Be Fat Like Me") will direct from a script he wrote.

"The Note" was Hallmark Channel's highest-rated original movie premiere in 2007 and continues to rank as the network's fourth-highest-rated original movie premiere ever. The movie premiered on December 8, 2007 to a 3.4 HH rating and delivered over 2.8 million homes and over 5.2 million total viewers. The original movie became the highest-rated ad-supported cable telecast of the day, the second-highest-rated ad-supported cable movie of the week and won the Saturday, 9-11 p.m. time period. (Source: Nielsen Media Research, 11/24-12/9/07).

To support the premiere of "The Note," Hallmark Channel launched, an outlet for viewers to submit their own personalized notes to family and friends. The movie was also supported by an extensive media campaign and online presence.

Hallmark Channel, owned and operated by Crown Media Holdings, Inc., is a 24-hour basic cable network that provides a diverse slate of high-quality entertainment programming to a national audience of 85 million subscribers. The top tier program service is distributed through more than 5,450 cable systems and communities as well as direct-to-home satellite services across the country. Hallmark Channel consistently ranks among the top 10 ad-supported cable networks in Prime Time and Total Day household ratings and is the nation's leading network in providing quality family programming. Crown Media also operates a second 24-hour linear channel which plays the greatest family movies of all time, Hallmark Movie Channel, and launched Hallmark Movie Channel HD in April, 2008.

Now, just to be clear--I have read the script to this movie and I like it, but I had nothing to do with the story and will have nothing to do with the film.  Just so you'll know.  But I did like the script.  :-)  And I hear the movie is supposed to air on January 29, 2009.  


Saturday, October 25, 2008

Sending You over to Randy's Blog

Okay, I can't keep quiet.  This issue is simply too important.  I'd like you to spend the time you would spend reading my bits of nonsense reading Randy Alcorn's blog instead.  Time well spent.  

P.S.  We just found out that Sarah Palin is coming to our area on Sunday, so my girlfriend and I are getting up while it's still dark and driving over.  We figured we'd stand in line BEFORE the doors open this time.  :-)  

I'll bring back pictures, Lord willing.  


Friday, October 24, 2008

McCain Rally

Well, I know I'm talking about politics again, but this was sort of an exciting opportunity.  

Yesterday a girlfriend and I took off and drove down to Sarasota for the McCain rally.  Sarasota isn't a large town, and we heard that the doors were to open at three; McCain was to speak at six. 

Sharon and I arrived at 3:15 and found a looooong line already stretching down four blocks.  We walked to the end of the line, greeting others, and found a real sense of delight from everyone. Nobody was griping about having to stand in line--everyone was delighted and maybe even surprised to find so many others present.  

We stood in that line for three hours, and we didn't even get in.  We heard that the stadium seated 4,000, and there had to be more people than that outside the arena.  When it became clear that we weren't going to get in, everyone just moved down to the front of the building to stand and wait . . . no one wanted to leave.  Everyone was just happy to be there and show support. 

The one statement I heard over and over was that the media would have us think that there's no one voting for McCain--well, lots of folks are.  

Enjoy the photos.  I had fun snapping them.  Click on any to enlarge.  :-)


P.S.  I forgot--one lovely thing happened while we were all standing outside the arena, knowing we couldn't get in.  We all had this urge to do something, and then it happened--someone started to sing "God Bless America."  The song spread throughout the crowd, and we all finished in a rousing chorus.  

God bless America, indeed.  

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Orson Scott Card speaks again

You've heard me talk about Orson Scott Card, the Mormon novelist who wrote the wonderful book, "Ender's Game."  Not too long ago I posted a link to one of his columns . . . and today I'm posting another one.  He talks about the current financial crisis, journalism, and the upcoming election--and I agree with every point. 


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The "I Love Your Blog" Award

Thank you to Peggy Phifer for awarding me with the "I Love Your Blog" designation.  I am tickled and honored--and somewhat amazed that anyone reads my ramblings!  

This designation comes with a few stipulations--undoubtedly to spread the love.  Here's what the award designees are supposed to do: 

1. Add the logo of the award to your blog. (just right-click and copy or save.) 
2. Add a link to the person who awarded it to you. 
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs. 
4. Add links to those blogs on your blog. 

5. Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs.

Because I live in mortal fear of forgetting someone I should have nominated, let me just nominate all the blogs in my blogroll to the right . . . these are the blogs I visit often, so these are the blogs I love.  :-) Check them out at your leisure.  


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dewey the Library Cat

My book club's book-of-the-month is DEWEY, the Small Town Library Cat, etc. . . . and last night I began to read it. Now, it may have been that I was tired, or that I was simultaneously watching ANIMAL COPS, where this pitiful puppy with Parvo had a miraculous recovery and finally made her way to a happy family, but I read three chapters of DEWEY and sobbed through every one.  Actually had to put the book down, wipe the tears, blow my nose, and wait for the sinuses to dry up before I could continue to read.  No, it's not a sad story.  Probably no one else would cry like that.  But I sure did.  

In any case, if the purpose of a "pleasure read" is to move us emotionally, DEWEY is more than accomplishing its purpose.  I highly recommend it--and I haven't even read the ending yet!  

Enjoy.  But if you're an animal lover, better keep a box of tissues handy. 

You know, I AM allergic to cats.  Maybe that explains it.  :-)


Monday, October 20, 2008

The Upcoming Election

I know how divisive talk of politics can be, so I am going to try to make this my last post on the subject.  After all, I've already voted, and I doubt anything I can say is going to change anyone's mind.  

And let me hasten to add that a lot of my Christian brothers and sisters are supporting the opposite candidate in this national election.  I bear them no ill will, and I support their right to think and decide for themselves. 

I also know that God rules in the affairs of men, so God is going to work through whoever wins this election. "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord," so God can and WILL work through either candidate to accomplish his eternal will.  

At the same time, God also expects us, his children, to be salt and light in our community, and a light has to shine.  God has given me a voice, and I know he expects me to use it.  I care passionately about many issues--one in particular--and I cannot hold my tongue while people argue about tax rates and political parties.  And since this is my own little corner of cyberspace, I am going to hold forth and pontificate for a few moments.

Last night I watched a movie on DVD: Karol: A Man who Became Pope. It was a biopic about Pope John Paul II, who was a young man under the Nazi oppression of Poland. He witnessed the disenfranchisement and destruction of an entire people group--the Polish Jews--and saw how the Nazis and then the communists tried to destroy individual freedom. He believed that through God's love, the value of human life and human freedom could be--and ought to be--restored.  I completely agree with him. 

In March 1857, in the case of Dred Scott v. Sanford, the United States Supreme Court ruled that all blacks—slaves as well as free--were not and could never be citizens of the United States. As to the Constitution, which declares that all men are created equal, Justice Taney wrote that “it is too clear for dispute, that the enslaved African race were not intended to be included, and formed no part of the people who framed and adopted this declaration . . . .”

The members of the court who ruled against the African-American Dred Scott apparently bought into Hamlet’s argument that “there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”

Hamlet would have no problem justifying the disintegration of people to property.

But Hamlet’s argument is false. Some acts violate moral decency and divine laws.  But in 1857 it was more "politically correct"  to buy into the Supreme Court's argument that blacks were not human and could be bought and sold.  In Hitler's Germany, it was more expedient to accept the idea that the Jews were not human and could be worked to death or exterminated. And today, millions of people have bought the argument that unborn babies are not human so they can be eliminated whenever "inconvenient." 

I find it supremely ironic that Obama, a man of color, is supporting another Supreme Court decision--Roe v. Wade--that proclaims that an entire category of human beings is not deserving of protection under the U.S. Constitution.  Obama voted against an Illinois bill that would provide medical care for aborted babies born alive. (These babies were taken to closets and left to die).  Not even the National Abortion Rights League went so far as to oppose that bill. He also refused to support a ban on partial-birth abortion, when a living baby is almost completely removed from the womb (all but the infant's head), and then brutally killed. 

On April 2, 2008, the Washington Post, hardly a conservative paper, reported:  "But Obama's record on abortion is extreme. He opposed the ban on partial-birth abortion -- a practice a fellow Democrat, the late Daniel Patrick Moynihan, once called "too close to infanticide." Obama strongly criticized the Supreme Court decision upholding the partial-birth ban. In the Illinois state Senate, he opposed a bill similar to the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act, which prevents the killing of infants mistakenly left alive by abortion. And now Obama has oddly claimed that he would not want his daughters to be "punished with a baby" because of a crisis pregnancy -- hardly a welcoming attitude toward new life."

 What if the issue today were not abortion, but slavery?  Would the Democratic Party, would Obama, say that "No one likes slavery, that's why we're trying to make it rare. But we can't deny slaveholders the right to choice.  And we can't even think about overturning a Supreme Court decision." 

If you lived in 1857, would you agree with the Supreme Court, or would you join the abolitionist cause?  If you lived in Hitler's occupation of Poland, would you be hiding Jews or closing your eyes to the destruction? You are living now--what will you do with your vote? 

My friends, I don't think I will ever agree 100 percent with any particular politician.  But if this were 1857, I'm pretty sure I'd be an abolitionist, even though I'm a child of the South.  Being a Southern abolitionist would subject me, I'm sure, to the same scorn pro-life women feel today.  (If you don't believe that pro-life women are scorned, just watch a couple of episodes of THE VIEW.) 

This issue is important in this election because our Supreme Court judges are aging, and the next President will choose their replacements.  Even if the present court does not lose any members in the next four years, a pro-life candidate holds certain truths--namely, that ALL life is created by God and deserves protection, especially in its most vulnerable form. This point of view influences all kinds of decisions; it is a specific world view, not just an opinion on abortion. 

I know most people these days are thinking about the economy, the war, and gas prices. They're worried about themselves and their families.  Well, my friends, we who believe in God know that there's a lot more to life than house payments and mortgages. We are commanded to be heavenly minded, not earthly-worried, and we know that the Father who takes care of sparrows and daisies will care for us. 

An eternal issue is staring us in the face--an issue that speaks as clearly about belief in God as anything imaginable. Don't for a moment think that abortion is simply about a woman's right to choose. It goes much deeper than that. The abortion issue is about whether or not life is God-created. If it is, man has no right to destroy it in the bloom of innocence.  If it is merely an evolutionary by-product, then who cares? 

Who, indeed?  


Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Coming TV Switch

I didn't care much for this video at first because it seemed to be making fun of older people. And my mom is pretty hip when it comes to technology--years ago I taught her how to email, and she's been doing it ever since.  If I can only get her to switch from a PC to a Mac, her coolness will be complete.  :-) 

But I could see my grandmother, if she were still with us, behaving like the woman in this commercial.  My favorite bit is at the end, when she's sounding out the URLs.  Cute!  


Saturday, October 18, 2008

One more technology post . . .

This is a cute video about how the mobile phone has taken over our lives.  Love the sound track!  

I will confess, with all the cool apps now available for the iPhone, this video isn't too far off the mark.  Sunday, after church, hubby and I were trying to figure out where to go for lunch.  I opened up my "Urban spoon" application on my iPhone.  It used its locator software to pinpoint our location, then it kept suggesting restaurants within driving distance until we finally picked one. 

Yep, the mobile phone is shaking things up!  What do you use your cell phone for?  Besides making calls, I mean? 


Friday, October 17, 2008

CF Husband Update

A couple of times over the last several months I've directed you to Nate Lawrenson's blog, Confessions of a CF Husband.  You may recall his story--he and his wife, Tricia, who has cystic fibrosis, were on a lung transplant list when Tricia became pregnant. Rather than abort the baby, which they were told had less than a 50 percent chance of surviving, they postponed the transplant. Gwyneth Rose was born at 24 weeks gestation, and Tricia had her transplant. 

The baby grew strong and is doing well, but Tricia has developed post-transplant lymphoma, a type of cancer caused by a virus. Her tumors did not respond to a round of chemotherapy.  This young family now needs our prayers. 

Spend a little time on Nate's blog and you will see pictures (he's a great photographer) of joyous faith in action. The love he has for his wife and daughter is contagious. Please join me in prayer for this family over the next few weeks. 


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Oh, this is simply going too far

I tend to look at reports of global warming and climate change with a skeptical eye . . . because I don't think the long term data supports the claim that man has changed the climate.  After all, while the northern polar cap is melting right now, the southern polar cap is larger than it's ever been (in recorded history). 

Anyway, I had to laugh when I read this news report.  And when I think about how much money has gone into this project . . . I get a baaaaaad feeling.  :-/ 


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Remember those inflatable men?

No, not the "living doll" types, but those burly prop-up men designed to ride in cars with women in order to scare off carjackers. 

Technology has one-upped the driving buddies--now you can ride in your car with a hologram.  This new "virtual" companion not only scares away potential car jackers and thieves, but will also nag you if you fall asleep and translate if you find yourself driving in a foreign country. 

You can watch a demonstration here . . . and I do believe the hologram buddy is now for sale.  So--who's going to be an early adopter? 

Me, I hardly ever leave the house, so I don't think this is a good investment.  I could accomplish the same thing by driving with one of my dogs.  The drool would frighten anyone away. 


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Yummy New Book!

Last year about this time I had the pleasure of reading Sandra Byrd's book, LET THEM EAT CAKE.  I'm happy to report that Sandra's back with a sequel--BON APPETIT.  And this book looks absolutely scrumptious!

Bon Appétit

By Sandra Byrd

In this sequel to Let Them Eat Cake, Byrd again entertains with descriptions of delectable food and, this time, with exquisite details of France as well. Foodies will delight in this novel, and anyone who adores romance will warm to the story. It's easy to identify with Lexi's struggles in life, because they mirror so much of what everyone experiences, no matter what their age.” --Romantic Times

Lexi Stuart is risking it all. Saying au revoir to the security of home, her job, and could-be boyfriend Dan, Lexi embarks on a culinary adventure in France to fulfill her life dream of becoming a pastry chef.  As she settles into her new home in the village of Presque le Chateau to study and work in a local bakery, her optimism meets resistance in the seemingly crusty nature of the people and culture around her. Determined to gain her footing, she finds a church, meets a new friend, and makes the acquaintance of a child named Celine–as well as Celine’s attractive, widowed father, Philippe. As Lexi lives her dream, the only thing she has to do is choose from the array in life’s patisser ie display window. Lexi discovers that as she leans more on God the choices become a little clearer– and making them, well, c’est la vie!

Bon Appétit is the sequel to this year’s Christy Award finalist, Let Them Eat Cake.

Hungry? Enter to win a gourmet baking basket: 



P.S.  Happy birthday to my sweet hubby!  


Monday, October 13, 2008

Open Library

My friend Deanna just told me about  This is a website that aims to have information on every book ever published--and every author.  It's pretty amazing, as it culls information from, the Library of Congress database, etc. 

I spent some time last night on my author page at, then I worked on pages for my friends Jane Orcutt and Lois Leppard, uploading their bios and photos.  

It's an interesting place to browse, so in the future, if you need information on that book you read and loved as a kid, don't forget to check  You should be able to find it there! 


Sunday, October 12, 2008

Middle Maintenance Mistakes

The other day I was reading a great book called "How Not to Look Old."  At the outset, the author gives the reader a test to decide if she's high-maintenance, middle-maintenance, or low-maintenance.  I took the test, and I'm definitely in the middle.  I like to paint the barn if I'm going out in public, but at home, the dog drool factor keeps me definitely on the simple side. 

Anyway--a few months ago I told you about the beauty test tube .  For about thirty bucks every three months, you get a test tube packed with goodies from various beauty manufacturers. They want you to try in the hope that you'll be come addicted to one of their products.  And it's a bargain--each of those little vials that you get usually retails for well over the price of the entire tube.  (And I have yet to become addicted to anything.) 

Okay, I'll confess that I always look forward to the arrival of my test tube.  And yesterday a new tube arrived, packed with several products in pint-sized packaging, with teeny tiny directions on the products.  And so I pulled out this one little tube that reportedly contained "Lancaster 6 SPF self-tanning bronze care. "  I had to put on my reading glasses AND squint to read the directions, which apparently amounted to "apply to clean, moisturized, exfoliated (ha!) skin."  

I squirted a handful of the stuff into my palms and applied it to my legs and arms.  You're supposed to apply it to your face and décolletage, but I didn't have the nerve to admit I have a decolletage OR to mess up the current color palette of this fifty-year-old face. But who cares about arms and legs? Though I live in Florida, I spent most of my summer either on a plane or holed up in my office, so my skin is funeral home pale.  Plus, there's the fact that we've all ditched our panty hose, which means no color below the knees . . . 

So I put the stuff on and stared--not a single change.  Nada.  No results at all.  Oh, well . . . I figured it was more of a lotion and went back to work. 

This morning I was washing my hands at the kitchen sink and happened to glance at my palms--Oh. My. Goodness.  I had brilliantly bronze palms.  I looked at my arms--yep, my bronze tint ended at my short sleeve line.  Whaddya know, the stuff worked--apparently it just takes a little time. 

I ran back into the bathroom, put the reading glasses back on, and peered at the fine print directions again.  Ah--missed a line:  WASH HANDS AFTER USE.  

Okey dokey.  :-)  I'm now trying a face peel, and hoping that I don't accidentally peel my face off.  
Have a good day, friends.  May you always read the directions. 


Saturday, October 11, 2008

Chinese Translations

A year or so ago I wrote a post about Chinese translations and now I see that it's time for another.  But this time, a sign is worth a thousand words.  :-)  

My cousin (Hi, Bel!) sent me the following pictures.  The Chinese made a great effort to translate their signs into English for the Olympics, and my hat's off to them. Honestly--because I'd hate to imagine how I'd translate Chinese.  

But these pictures are guaranteed to bring a smile.  Enjoy! 


Friday, October 10, 2008


I love to laugh--who doesn't?  And lately, when it seems there's little to laugh about, laughter is even more appreciated. 

My dear brother Randy Alcorn posted a blog about laughter, on earth and in heaven.  He discussed the importance of humor, and how God blesses it, and he specifically mentions the wholesome comedy of Brian Reagan.  Watch the clip in Randy's post, and if you want some more chuckles, check out any of Brian's video clips on  They're a stitch--and they're clean! 

(Chuckle.)  I get tickled just thinking about the "girth units."  :-)


Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Dr. Pat Show

The other day I was invited to be on the Dr. Pat show, a radio program out of Seattle.  We were discussing "The Note," and you can listen to the interview here.    Dr. Pat was bright and vivacious--I admire people who can be bright around the clock!  I tend to slip into dullsville after lunch time. 

BTW, if you don't receive my email newsletter and would like to, be sure to sign up in the "newsletter" box to the right.  I'll be sending out the autumn update on Friday.  

One more thing--I'm not Catholic, but I thought this video was a stirring and lovely reminder of the importance of the upcoming election. Please take a moment to watch and pass on the important word!  


Wednesday, October 08, 2008

In Memory

Photo:  Lois and an unidentified friend. 

Lois Gladys Leppard, author of the Mandie series, passed away this past weekend.  I learned of the news on Monday. 

Here's her official obituary: 

Lois Gladys Leppard

Greenville, South Carolina 

  Lois Gladys Leppard, 84, of 309 Cary St, Greenville, died Sunday, October 5, 2008, at Laurel Baye Healthcare of Greenville. Born May 9, 1924, in Spartanburg, Ms. Leppard was the daughter of the late James William and Bessie (Wilson) Leppard. Lois was the author of the Mandie Books series. She was a member of Fairview Presbyterian Church in Simpsonville. She is survived by her son, Donn Leppard and his wife Shannon of Cornelius, N.C.; two granddaughters; and her sister, Belle Langford of Cleveland, S.C. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to a charity of one's choice. The family will be at their respective homes.  Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting Thomas Mcafee Funeral Home, Downtown. Published in The Greenville News: 10-06-2008

I loved Lois--she was funny, feisty, and red-haired.  She was the only writer I know who used to fax in hand-written manuscripts.  She used to call me and chat for an hour, at least.  I will miss her.  

You can read more about Lois on Wikipedia.  


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

THE NOTE DVD releases today!

Today it goes live!  You can order "The Note" from either Netflix or Blockbuster or BUY the DVD from your favorite retail outlet, including  

I did an interview for's newsletter . . . and I think you can find it here.  

On the DVD you can also find "featurettes"--interviews with yours truly and Genie Francis, the star of the movie. 

I hear a sequel is definitely in the works and should air at the end of January 2009.  It has a romantic theme (think Valentine's Day!), and stars Genie Francis and Ted McGinley again.  In fact, all of the key characters from the first movie reprise their roles in the second. 

Thanks for your enthusiasm over this project.  Enjoy! 


Monday, October 06, 2008

Robin Lee Hatcher's latest arrival

If this isn't the cutest cover I've ever seen, I don't know what is.  :-)  

I want to tell you about my friend Robin's latest release, Bundle of Joy.  

by Robin Lee Hatcher
October, Steeple Hill mass market romance

Alicia Harris says she's happily married and expecting a baby—but only the last part is true. She can't bear to disappoint her grandfather by telling him she's two months away from single motherhood. Then Grandpa Roger, still recovering from a heart attack, drops in unexpectedly to spend the holidays with Alicia and her husband, and to protect her beloved grandfather from unnecessary stress, Alicia needs to find a fill-in—fast. Childhood friend Joe Palmero fits the bill and is willing to play along. Still, the longer they spend playing their parts, the closer Alicia and Joe come to discovering what love, faith and marriage truly mean.


About Robin:

Robin Lee Hatcher discovered her vocation as a novelist after many years of reading everything she could put her hands on, including the backs of cereal boxes and ketchup bottles. The winner of the Christy Award for Excellence in Christian Fiction (Whispers from Yesterday), the RITA Award for Best Inspirational Romance (Patterns of Love and The Shepherd's Voice), two RT Career Achievement Awards (Americana Romance and Inspirational Fiction), and the RWA Lifetime Achievement Award, Robin is the author of over 55 novels, including Catching Katie, named one of the Best Books of 2004 by the Library Journal. 

For more information about Robin and her books, visit her web site at and her Write Thinking Blog at

Saturday, October 04, 2008


A couple of links for you today--

First, if you're missing out on the fall foliage, you can go to this website and download some gorgeous photos for your computer desktop.  I found some beautiful fall trees that will have to satisfy my urge for fall color . . . 

And this next video clip is enough to make you believe in guardian angels.  :-)  If everyone were this fortunate, we could put lawyers and ambulance drivers out of business! 


Friday, October 03, 2008

One step beyond the kindle . . .

Heading out to Jackson, Mississippi today . . . and thinking that the next time I pack my suitcase, it'll be for my VACATION!  YIPPEE!  (We're cruising again--going to Guatemala, Belize, and Mexico, I think. I only hope the Gulf remains calm.)  

Okay, so you've heard me talk about how much I love my Kindle--the ebook reader from Amazon.  But take a look at this, the next generation of e-reader.  (You may want to let the entire video load before you press play.) 

Okay, so it won't fit into a pocketbook.  But can you imagine keeping all of your piano music on one of these?  Turning a page with a tap on the screen?  Having your entire college text--ALL of your college texts--on one of these?  Maybe the price of college textbooks would finally come down. 

Very Jetsons, isn't it?  Moms could finally lighten their kids' backpacks and stop all those little kids from toppling over backward in the school parking lot.  :-)  

I'm telling you, the future is an awesome thing . . . 


Thursday, October 02, 2008

Another fun web site

This one comes from Kelli Standish, webmaster extraordinaire.  She sent me to a 911 for blocked writers--though at the moment, I'm not blocked, I'm just unassigned.  :-)  

So if you're stumped, or if you just want a smile, check out this site.  Very cute! 


Wednesday, October 01, 2008

PC vs. Mac wars

Have you seen those new commercials for Microsoft?  First there were the nonsensical commercials with Seinfeld and Bill Gates--in a shoe store (huh?) and trying to live with a normal family.  Those were so strange/ineffective that Microsoft pulled them before the third segment even aired. 

Now they are airing these "I'm a PC" ad, featuring hip famous people who proclaim that they use PCs, not Mac.  These ads are supposed to assure us that you can be cool and use a PC . . . since the Apple ads portray the PC guy as stodgy, confused, and hopelessly behind the times.  Well, the secret's out.  Some of those PC people are really MAC people!  And the commercial itself was . . . made on a Mac!  LOL!  

Jim Bell alerted me to this article online.  

Now--I'll admit that I don't feel any "cooler" since I converted a couple of years ago.  (Well, maybe a little).  The things that forced my conversion were MS Vista and Word 2007.  Vista slowed my PC to a crawl and Word 2007 messed up my machine so badly that Microsoft gave me a refund AND sent me a new package of software, which I have not and will not install.  Just not worth the hassle. 

What Apple has done is made my life simpler and more fun.  :-)  And if I happen to look cool while using my Air and my iPhone and my ipod, well, that's a small price to pay.  :-) 

News flash:  The UPS man just brought me boxes of THE FACE, an entire month before the official release date!  Stay tuned--I'll have to give some away!