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QOTD: Emerson

March 10th, 2012

“Cut these words and they would bleed; they are vascular and alive; they walk and run.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer and philosopher (1803-1882)

new new newness

February 16th, 2012

Author Blog, by moi.

why i started writing a blog, or, hello to all the sweet girls and two boys

February 14th, 2012

happy birthday, blog :) seven years today.

Snake grass pinwheel

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

I was at my girlfriend A’s house. I brought my coffee cup with me and banged it down on her counter. We needed to talk PTA stuff — I think we were planning a carnival. She told me later that the way I put down my mug convinced her that we were meant to be friends. (i miss her — moved across town and never see anyone anymore.) She threw out the old coffee, made a fresh pot, poured me a cup and then said Oh-you-have-to-see-this! She took me back into her office, and there on her screen was Amalah Not Too Sweet, with pictures of cherries for the header. (When I think back to my early days of blogging, Not Too Sweet often pops into my head, with images of Chocolate Volcano Cake, cute babies, funny stories, advice columns…)

Such a funny girl, Amalah. And my friend A. She knew I was staying home with the kids and a little restless. I told Steve I wanted to start writing a blog, so he built this one. Then he built one for himself, and another one, and another one, and then, why the hell not? This one.

Then I read (not in this order), Rockstar Mommy, Yvonne, Zoot, Mir, Heather, and later, Jon. (A sample “daily affirmation” from Jon: “Learn from your detractors. And then block their negativity. And their IP address.”) Later on, I added Laura (i love that post, by the way), Vixen and Nan, and… Koreen.

Now we’re all getting a little discouraged about blogging. No one reads The Blogs that much anymore (see: Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr). They’re alright, and I know a lot of people liked the “closed garden” aspect, but I don’t find them as satisfying as I do blogging. But I’m also writing fiction and non-fiction, as always, and doing marketing for those projects, so that is where I throw my angst, not at blogging.

Also it’s a little weird out in the Internet waters, nowadays. Everyone’s figuring out how to handle it, with the kids getting bigger and wanting privacy. (Many of us had little kids when we started this out — my daughter was 5 and my son was 2, how is that possible? They’re 12 and 9 now, whoa.) Jon and Dooce are legally separated. Still blogging. One of my favorite blogs belongs to the ex-wife of one of the best bosses I ever worked for. Connections. Go figure.

So de-lurk, already. I still get a fair amount of traffic but hardly any comments. Go anon if you’d like, I don’t mind ;) I’d like to know who’s out there still, or finding the blog for the first time.

Happy Valentine’s Day! And happy birthday, blog. here’s to many years ahead.



Sandra Tsing Loh is not a baby.

February 13th, 2012

But her dad is. #blesshisheart. She’s just stressed out and slowly going broke. I have never read such a painfully funny article in my life.


And no, I’m not saying that in an “elderschadenfreude” way, ‘k? ‘K.

it’s my blog’s birthday! (in a week)

February 7th, 2012

King Woogie

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

hey, dear Blog,

happy birthday, blog. happy happy wacky mommy blog that doesn’t pay the bills but keeps me writing. on Valentine’s Day we will celebrate seven years together. as my Dear Late Granny would say, Seems like seventy. so let’s have some fun, my blog, every day this month. (or as close to it as we can, what say?)

you go first.


let’s start with a few random posts, based on what people are looking for in their searches:

1) chocolate volcano cake. this recipe is my ma’s, but I stole it and now it’s mine. and now it’s yours. I have heard that women have been proposed to once they made this cake for those special men in their lives.

2) skinny bitch in the kitch. i didn’t write it, but i appreciate the sass behind the phrase.

3) dolphin sex (what?)

4) wacky mommy sex

5) rockstar mommy (my girl, not yours. sorry, that’s all i’m gonna say ;) mine mine mine)

and now five of my favorites:

1) i had a bad year in 1997 (one of the hardest things i ever had to write)

2) & 3) two columns about racism: one and two

4) Happy VD! Clap, everybody, clap!


one of my very, very favorites:

5) Thirteen Ways to Get It Up

come back tomorrow and we’ll play some more, ‘k?



qotd + pic of the day

February 2nd, 2012

“In the darkest days, the Lord puts the best people into your life.”

“Quick, give me a throw pillow and some thread because that needs to be an Encouragement.”

— from “The Fault in Our Stars,” John Green

New Year's rose

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

pic of the day

February 1st, 2012

The rime of the ancient blackberry

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

And now, in the category of “ya gotta send a letter to get a letter”: Here is my project for February.
Why should kids be the only ones to exchange Valentines? ;)



Sherman Alexie on immigration

January 31st, 2012

“Let’s get one thing out of the way: Mexican immigration is an oxymoron. Mexicans are indigenous. So, in a strange way, I’m pleased that the racist folks of Arizona have officially declared, in banning me alongside Urrea, Baca, and Castillo, that their anti-immigration laws are also anti-Indian. I’m also strangely pleased that the folks of Arizona have officially announced their fear of an educated underclass. You give those brown kids some books about brown folks and what happens? Those brown kids change the world. In the effort to vanish our books, Arizona has actually given them enormous power. Arizona has made our books sacred documents now.”

— Sherman Alexie is a poet, short story writer, novelist, and filmmaker. His book “The Lone Ranger and Tonto’s Fist Fight in Heaven,” was on the banned curriculum of the Mexican American Studies Program

some days are a little much, plus hey did i mention that My Book is in print?

December 7th, 2011

A stream runs through it

(Photo by Steve Rawley)

“That’s Not It” has been available on Kindle since October, and now you can purchase a genuine printed copy. Alternately, you can buy it on Amazon.

Please buy a copy, or multiple ones if you’re in a gift-giving mood, if it is in the budget. Send me an e-mail if you’d like a free bookmark to go with it. Include your address and I’ll mail it to you. Thanks for your support of this crazy-ass endeavor of mine. (PS I will be updating my author site soon, so bookmark it if you are so inclined.)

So. I don’t know if you’re like me, but I know I am. Aren’t some days just a little too frickin’ much? I was getting ready to start the holiday baking (casseroles, cookies, breads, and assorted everything). Thought I would start by cleaning the oven. Bad call. I broke the oven. (Let this be a lesson to you.) Now we’re in the middle of picking out a new one, and will be converting from electric to gas, only the ovens (ovens!!! finally getting the convection oven I’ve wanted my entire life) will be electric, and ps they don’t make the right kind of gas stove to fit into the drop-in slot the current stove is in and hello, carpenter, bye-bye, countertop and cabinet, we need more wiggle room.

If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you know how Steve and I are: Why clean the bathroom when you can grow mushrooms in there instead? We do it nice cuz we do it frickin’ complicated. (That particular remodel took the contractors four fun-filled months.)

Today I need to:

* make cooky dough and freeze it, in anticipation of someday having a stove again
* work on my new book (ideas/dialogue that need to be written down before they go away)
* finish Granny’s memoir… still inputting recipes and kinda not into it
* clean the house
* work out
* update calendar
* help the kids with homework
* fix dinner (waffles? soup in the microwave? again? bake bread in breadmaker?)
* work on publicity for “That’s Not It” — reading? book signing? order copies to sell, finish press release, update author site, and the list goes on…
* avoid Facebook/Twitter/politics/the mayor of Portland
* figure out what to get Steve, the kids, and the rest of our family for Christmas
* finish mailing out holiday cards
* oh, right. buy more holiday cards

Honestly, all I want to do is climb into a hot bath and stay there ’til January. Please advise, dear readers: What do you do to rein in the schedule?



edited on Thursday to say: I baked cinnamon swirl bread in the breadmaker — delicious with butter, and not as sweet as a cinnamon roll. (I can’t find the recipe online — it was from the cookbook that came with the machine. But it baked in the breadmaker — no turn out, extra rising, etc.)

I’m baking whole wheat bread right now. I mixed up and froze dough for Mexican Wedding Cakes and chocolate chip cookies (semi-sweet and milk chocolate chips — my secret ingredients) and Spritz are next. Tonight? Burritos in the microwave (not to be confused with microwave burritos, although we have some of those in the freezer ;) and… salad. Last night was waffles. Good thing I mainly survive on protein shakes (blender! also not broken!) and soup. The kids seem to be fine with pre-made mac and cheese, cereal, toast, peanut butter sandwiches, granola bars and… more waffles? Damn. Missing the oven. We can always send out for pizza. It’s not like we don’t do that once a week, anyway.

gratitude, days 26 & 27

November 27th, 2011

yesterday, i was grateful cuz we all went to see the Muppets movie (soooo funny) and my sis and her husband, Red-Headed Guy from Texas, went, too. I was going to fix dinner for us, but she said, No, we have to go out for Indian food. So we did! giving me not 1 but 3 things to be grateful for: the Muppets, time w/ family, and Indian food. oh gosh it was good, i’m just saying…

Today? Today i am extra-grateful cuz Steve did the grocery shopping, and now he’s hanging up the Christmas lights. wow. what a dude, huh?

oh yeah also he sent the final (final?) (final!) (cuss plz let this be the final) draft of my book + the bio + the cover to the publishers for the hard copy y’all have been so impatiently waiting for.

so check the website and we will have links up within the next couple weeks.

i promise.

thank you for your support. ps my bookmarks for “That’s Not It” arrived this week, too. If you would like a personalized bookmark, plz leave a note in comments or send me an e and i will mail one to you!! They’re very pretty and shiny.

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