The Leibster Award

Shari of Writing is Communication was gracious enough to nominate me for a Liebster Award. I was gracious enough to accept it but not gracious enough to complete it. Until now. April 15 was exactly one month ago so it’s about time I saddle up the horse and ride.

On a side note completely unrelated to the Liebster: it’s currently raining a good spring rain. While there’s no hope of it growing hair on my head, it will grow the seeds in my garden. 

Okay, back to the Liebster. Thanks a million Shari. It’s an honor to be thought of for  an award.

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Next up: Answer some questions. 

  1. Do you think that a writer has to be defined by one genre?

Hell yeah! I love Terry Brooks’s fantasy novels. If I were to buy a Terry Brooks book I expect it to be fantasy/sci-fi. It would be like buying a can of corn and opening it up and finding it filled with brussels sprouts. However, as an author I would want to be free to write whatever genre I want. Historical fiction today, thriller tomorrow, and romantic comedy the day after that. In conclusion, I shouldn’t be defined by one genre but my favorite authors should be.

2. What is your favourite writing topic?

I’ll have to go with my blog topic on this one, parenting and kids. Sometimes it’s about what to do. Sometimes it’s an example of what not to do. Most of the time my kids are great, but sometimes they can be assholes. I like to write about both.

3. Do you have a book that you recommend to other readers on a regular occasion? What and why?

For kids I always ask if they’ve read “The Book With No Pictures”. It’s the perfect read aloud book sure to have every laughing so hard the tears will run down your leg. To normal adults I always recommend “The Book Thief” by Markus Suzak. I’ve mentioned it several times on my blog, too.

4. Book version or movie version?

Really? The book is always better, isn’t it? Have you ever watched a movie that was better than the book?

5. If I gave you the word “vellichor” as a writing jump off point where might you jump?

I would jump into a story about a kid who accidentally wanders into the world’s oldest bookstore and finds a portal to a world where they become supreme ruler.

6. What would be your dream setting to write in?

I think I would love to be in a log cabin deep in the rainforest away from civilization. Of course, I’d be by myself because DW’s dream spot is on the beach. I bet there’s somewhere in the world that has a rainforest next door to a beach so we don’t have to divorce.

7. What is your favourite season?

Baseball.

8. Who is your favourite villain? Why?

My kids are 2 of them. They’re always out to get me. I don’t know if she counts as a villain or not, but I’m going to name Dolores Umbridge. God, I hated that woman. She was so well written and so easy to hate. She created some outstanding obstacles for the trioo.

9. Who is your favourite hero? Why?

I’m not sure she’s the hero, but she is the protagonist of her story. Liesle Meminger. She learns to read, hides a Jew, cheats death, and steals books. I think that makes her a hero in my book.

10. What does writing mean to you?

Writing means I get to be creative. I get to try to make people laugh with my weird sense of humor. It also means this stupid little blog gets to connect with people around the world.

11. How would you respond to this quote from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, “If you don’t know where you are going any road h take you there”.

Hell yeah! I would respond with “Not all who wander are lost.” The license plate of our first car was “GET OUT”. Now go explore, see what’s around that next bend, and discover something new.

Now to nominate a few blogger friends from around the world…

1. A Momma’s View
2. Dorky Mom Doodles
3. Snoozing On the Sofa

Feel free to participate, or not. The choice is yours. If you participate, don’t forget to nominate a few or more!

For the three I nominated, here are my 11 questions for you.

  1. What are you reading right now? Would you recommend it?
  2. If you became a travel blogger where would you go first?
  3. Which antagonist is easiest for you to hate?
  4. Do you have a favorite board game?
  5. Which fictional character would like to have a lunch date with?
  6. Assuming you live through the book’s entirety, which book would you not mind finding yourself within?
  7. Spring rain or winter snow?
  8. You’ve been invited to do a TED talk. What are you going to talk about?
  9. What song/artist do you consistently listen to?
  10. What’s one of your favorite quotes?

Now give your nominations some questions to answer and thanks for playing along!

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Three Kids and A Classic Movie

“We watched that movie last weekend with the boys and one of their friends. I had to laugh when the movie opened with kissing and all three boys were like “Kissing? Already? UGH!” Then it cuts to 10 year old Fred Savage’s character saying the exact same thing.

Good times…

They still think kissing is gross.

They loved the movie, of course. What’s not to love. Andre the Giant. A six fingered man. Plenty of slapstick humor. The only part the six year old, Bang, was unsure of was the torturing of Wesley in the secret room under the tree. He had TONS of questions about that after the movie.

How did it make electricity?
Did it really hurt him?
How did all those gears turn?
Was it metal?
Why did he have to get electrocuted?

Some of them he asked multiple times just to make sure he understood it. I had to explain about generators and water wheels and electrical currents. I also explained acting that stuff in movies isn’t real. He was good after that. His favorite character was Andrew Andre the Giant. His favorite part was when Buttercup pushed Wesley down the giant hill then she rolled down after him.

We have also watched “Gremlins”, “The Neverending Story” and “The Goonies”. The Goonies was far more crude than I remember it. There weren’t any words in the movie they haven’t heard before. Naturally, the boys loved it. What’s not to love, though? Now they know why we don’t feed them after midnight. They also know why we sometimes call them Goonies and where their mother and I get the line “HEEEEY YOOOU GUUUUYS!”

What old classics have your kids watched? Was their reaction what you expected?

For more antics you can follow me on Twitter and Instagram.

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Hold it, Hold it! Is this a kissing book?

Lucy At Home

Sunday Share: Y2W20

I hope all you mothers had a fabulous day. Whether you got breakfast in bed, supper from your significant other, handmade gifts or store bought gifts or gift cards, hope it was all in the name of love.

Today in church when Father asked all the mothers to stand for a blessing, I stood up, too. DW laughed so hard she was crying. She thinks I wasn’t listening, but really I just wanted to show my support for all the moms.

Dorky Mom Doodles
What can you reach while driving?

Where Are Your Pants
The Grandpa who built more than just a doll house…

Wonderoak
Marriage tip and nachos…

Threes A Herd
First loves, Prince Charmings, and the truth…

Eli, The Coach Daddy 
A hat, some golf, and tacos…

As always, you can follow more of my adventures in parenting and husbanding on Instagram and Twitter.

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Questions I Asked My Kids: Ep67

MLB: New York Mets at Atlanta BravesWe’re back from another evening of baseball practice. It’s amazing how one can improve just by seeing others do what you’re trying to do. Like swing a bat. He has always swung well. Or at least well enough to hit the ball. A couple days ago we were taking some swings in the backyard. Our neighbor, also a ball player, joined in. Once Crash how he swung he adjusted his own swing. Immediately, he added 30 feet to his hits. Sometimes you just need to see what the next level looks like in order to reach the next level.

1. What made you laugh today?

Crash: When we were watching funny bird videos at Nanny and Pop’s house.
Bang: Doing funny things at the water fountain. When my friend was getting a drink at the fountain I pulled his head away and then he got splashed

2. What are three things you are grateful for today?

Crash: That my friend is allowed to sleepover tomorrow, that I’m still alive, and that I have a loving mom and dad and only on occasion they get mad and yell.
Bang: Math, Spring, and it’s almost my birthday!

3. Which accomplishment are you most proud of?

Crash: I’ve made friends
Bang: I’m most proud of my fast running

4. What are three things you are learning in school?

Crash: Persuasive writing, fractions, and medieval times
Bang: Parallelograms, and I can’t think of anything else because I’m smart. I’m ready for grade 6.

5. Are you going to be a dad one day? How many kids do you want?

Crash: Maybe… I’m hoping for at least one and a maximum of four
Bang: I’m going to be a dad and a worker. I’ll have 3 kids and they’ll be little triplets.

6. What nice thing did you do for someone today?

Crash: Held the door for all my classmates because I was the last one out
Bang: Hugged Brenna.

7. What do you like most about yourself?

Crash: I like my good looks most
Bang: I like how I’m smart.

8. What do you like most about your brother?

Crash: That he entertains me and he sings in the church choir
Bang: He plays Bey Blades with me and loves me

9. What’s your earliest/first memory? (alt: What’s the most embarrassing thing I do?)

Crash: I remember we were doing wood for Guppie’s house, I was talking about MineCraft a lot and Guppie gave me money to buy Minecraft because I helped with the wood.
Bang: When I got stuck in the bathroom because I had soapy hands I couldn’t turn on the water to rinse my hands and I couldn’t open the door because my hands were too slippery. I layed on the floor crying.

10. What is the theme song for your life?

Crash: Castle on the Hill by Ed Sheeran
Bang: Don’t Stop the Music by Rhianna

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Month in Review: April

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If my blog got pregnant last August this month would be its due date. That’s how long it has been since my last Month in Review. Since then, things have been chugging along like the Little Engine That Could. 153 posts later and it’s May and about time for another review.

26 – It’s the number of losses my Orioles have collected so far. Poor things. This is also the number of posts I published in April. Which is weird because I posted every day but 2 (poor M and X didn’t get their day). Where did those 2 posts get lost? Sucked up by the abyss that is the internet.

50 – Of the 26 posts, B is for Breathe earned the most views.

1,291 – While this could be the number of socks the dryer has eaten, it is actually the total number views for the month of April. I would like have had 1,500, but I’ll take what I get. I’m just surprised anyone even comes here to read my stuff. Thank you 1,291 times.

717 – This is how many times I cleaned up someone else’s mess over the weekend. It’s also the total number of visitors to my blog. Imagine if I got that many visitors to my house!

61kltx812bkl-_sx425_466 – Is about the number of times the boys told me they were hungry yesterday. I’m going to need to start selling my body to pay for the grocery bill. If only my body could buy us more than a bag of Holy Crap. I don’t like Holy Crap. I do like that my blog was liked 466 times, though.
239 – This is number of times you made my day last month. I love hearing from all y’all. Especially, when it’s about something I’ve written that you made a connection with. This is what keeps the blog fun and keeps me writing more. Thanks for all your comments!

55 – If only I could be as world traveled as my blog is. I could see everywhere from the US to Mauritius (off the coast of Madagascar) to New Zealand. However, the three countries who visited most are the usUS, caCanada, and the ukUK. indIndia was a close 4th and ausAustralia trailed by 1 for 5th place.

1,331 – This number is 275 more than the last time I reported it. I still can’t believe I have that many followers. To all 1,331 of you, thank you. You’re awesome. If you want to be awesomer, tell your friends! Thanks to Keeping It Real with, Kristi Brutally Honest Mom and Pixel Edit for being my newest three followers. Don’t be strangers. Come by this space whenever you want.

There is never competition here. Except when there is. I enjoy competition. I think it helps us rise up to be better than we thought we could be. So the reward for winning the competition that isn’t a competition is a simple shout out. Here are the top six commenters.*

That Anxious Mom Leads the way with 52 comments
Dewy was a close second with 43
Ann was on her tail with 41
Elen Grey followed with 38
It’s Good To Be Crazy Sometimes came in with 32
I Didn’t Have My Glasses On is new to this list and I’m glad to see her here. She’s here with 24 comments.

Will you find yourself on this list? I’d love to have you here!

As always you can follow me and find more of my fun on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to call Buck and find out why my Orioles have played just 34 games and are in last place, 17 games behind 1st place.

*This list is based on the last 1,000 comments

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Sunday Share: Year 2 Week 19

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Welcome to May. The sixth of May to be exact. Just a reminder that next weekend is Mother’s Day. Now’s your chance to plan something. Or set a remind to call your mom (or, at least, someone’s mom).

Our gardens are happy again. I mixed some compost and peat moss into the soil. Then I planted three new rose bushes. Our veggie garden got an upgrade when I added some fruit. A strawberry plant and blueberry bush. May summer come soon and may my plants flourish like the weeds I know I’m going to have to pull.

While we’re waiting for the weeds to grow, here are some good reads…

A Texan’s View of Upstate New York
Meeting and greeting with some friends…

The Return of the Modern Philosopher
The thinks one thinks while running

Bar Mom
On turning 30…

Julie Around the Globe
Should you find yourself in Dumaguete…

Ipuna Black
Getting back to what’s important…

Hope this Sunday finds you in good spirits. After a day of gardening in the sunshine and then supper with friends, we’re feeling good.

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Questions I Ask My Grandmother

My grandmother is wise beyond her years. She has a lot of years, too. She’s also a woman of few words. At least when it comes to writing her answers back to me. I bet if I talked to her in person her answers would be days long. This is episode three. You can read episodes one and two, if you like.

One of my favorite things about her is her sense of humor. This is woman who put a fake bird in a tree and then got my dad to sneak up on it to try to catch it. She had a chocolate cake that was actually made from styrofoam and loved to offer a piece to unsuspecting victims. She had small toy Christmas tree that could be wound up. It would slowly spin and play Christmas songs. That is until its spinner went kablooey and it would spin 90 mph and it’s ornaments would hang on for dear life. And Easter egg hunting? I loved it. The eggs she hid always had money in them!

So, Grandma (or G.G. to her grandkids), what answers have you for us today?

1. What’s the secret to a happy life?

Enjoy each day. It’s never coming again.

2. What’s the secret to a happy marriage?

Keep your own identity.

3. Is there something you had as a kid that you wish you still had?

I still have 1 toy. It’s a doll cradle that I later learned was made by an undertaker. His wife was the daughter of an ancestor that died in 1835 in a boat wreck.

4. What is/was your favorite game to play?

You name it – outdoor, baseball. Indoor, a board game.

5. Are there any celebrities in our family tree?

Well Peggy Shippen who married you know who. (Actually, I didn’t know who. DW did a quick Google search and it says she is the 2nd wife of Benedict Arnold. She was the highest paid spy of the American Revolution)

6. What are you most proud of?

Shhh… my community activities

7. What was your wedding day like? Do you have any wedding photos?

It rained. Only picture faded- unrecognizable

8. What’s your favorite thing about being a grandmother and great grandmother?

Oh you, you of course.


I guess that proves once and for all that I’m her favorite. I always knew it, I’m just happy to have it in writing!

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Local Music

First, Happy Star Wars Day. May the 4th be with you.

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I told you yesterday about missing Z day because we went to a concert where a friend of ours was performing. Today, I’m going to carry on with the music theme. This is another local musician. He also happens to be DW’s cousin.

4f0c0269edaa197628f40198958396bd-music-jokes-music-humorSteve is wicked good with his guitar. His voice is easily recognizable, too. I could pick it out of a police line up from 50 paces without my glasses. What it’s doing in the police line-up is beyond me. You’ll have to ask Steve.

He is a singer/songwriter with a sound like no other. He sounds like the birth child of Joni Mitchell, Stan Rogers, and a Fender. He took a few years off from writing songs (if 15 is a few). He’s back at it again with new songs. As always, they’re songs we can connect to. They’re as real as the voice he uses to bring them to life. We’ve heard him play so many times. Sometimes in his own home. Sometimes at the venue of his latest gig. Sometimes solo and sometimes with friends. Now you can hear him at his newest gig… Right here on this little blog.

Sit back, relax, and turn your speakers up. Then close your eyes and imagine yourself at thirteen years old and just discovering love. As love walks into your life, it could also “walk right out again.”

Without further ado, Here’s Story of Love. Let us known what you think of it down in the comments.

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Why I Missed Z Day

I made it to the end of the A to Z blogging Challenge. I know, I know. Yay me. The end was a day late, but that wasn’t my fault. I blame DW and Three Finger Shot. Normally I would have written in the evening after the kids had gone to bed. That’s pretty much how the whole challenge went. Except DW had texted me on the afternoon of Z day to say that Three Finger Shot was playing in town from 6-9 that evening and had a big announcement to make. She also said that Nanny and Pop were coming down to watch the boys and get them to bed while we went out. DATE NIGHT!

Being Three Finger Shot groupies, we knew we wouldn’t miss it. Instead of writing we were at a concert. It was a small pub concert and a bunch of our friends were there. And it was on a Monday! We had guesses for the big announcement narrowed down to:

  • A) The singer’s wife was pregnant
  • B) A new album release date
  • C) Summer touring dates
  • D) They were moving to our town (or one nearby)

Turns out it was E) None of the above. Our town, located on the Strait of Canso (a strait being a body of water between two land masses and connecting two larger bodies of water) has a festival every summer called the Festival of the Strait. Appropriate, right? Anyway, part of the festival is a concert and Three Finger Shot’s announcement was that they are playing at the Festival again! They were a massive hit when they played there last year.

I ended my Z post with song I recorded on my phone from the pub concert on Z day. You should go have a listen if you haven’t yet.

So, you can clearly see, it wasn’t my fault. And it was totally worth it.