Friday, May 31, 2013


Hubby and I went away last weekend. A much needed kid-free weekend. It was a peaceful three days in New Hampshire. We visited Portsmouth and crossed the border to Kittery, Maine where we shopped ‘til we dropped. We also drove an hour north to Freeport where we did more shopping.

On our last day there we drove up the coast to Hampton Beach. We loved seeing all the beautiful houses and of course the ocean. I love the ocean. Watching the waves roll into the shore is calming to me.

Life was good in NH.

We returned to reality and all hell broke loose. All good things must come to an end and boy was it a slap in the face. It’s all I can say at this time, but damn sometimes kids can stress you and break your heart.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Goodbye to a Historic Site

I grew up in Watervliet, NY and lived two blocks from the historic Saint Patrick’s Church. You could see the church from our second floor windows. The building was huge and the inside beautiful.

My parents were married in the church, I made my first communion and we went to many midnight masses on Christmas Eve. I’d heard the rumors from family and friends that they planned knock down the church and put up a Price Chopper Supermarket.

Now I’m all for using unused space. I’m one who believes if a space is empty another business should use that space instead of building a new place. I just have a hard time tearing down a historic site. It broke my heart to see the pictures on friend’s facebook pages.

Here are the before and after.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Just Hit Send

You create your masterpiece. Polish it to within an inch of your life and then you do it. You hit the send button. Let the waiting begin. If you’re anything like me you want instant gratification. After all, with technology the way it is anything is possible. But is a response in a few hours realistic? No, definitely not. It’s not impossible though. I have to take a step back and realize I’m not the only writer editors are receiving submissions from.

It’s not easy being a writer. When you send your baby off into the big bad world it’s scary. Just thinking about my story or article idea being under a magnifying glass, viewed by a critical eye, gives me the willies. With each page that sits in from of an editor I know he or she will examine every word looking for errors and wonders if you have a unique idea/plot. She’s looking to see if you can weave a riveting tale or pique a reader’s interest in a subject.

As time goes by a million questions form in my mind. Will the editor like the story? Will she think – what the f%^& was this writer thinking? Is she laughing at my attempts to write? These are questions I ask myself every single time I send a manuscript out.

I’ve published numerous stories in the Chicken Soup for the Soul books. I wrote for True Confessions, True Romance and Modern Romance for years. My articles have appeared in many issues of Listen Magazine, Western NY Family mag and, but it doesn’t ease the fear of rejection.

In my other life I’ve published 35 books…the one thing they all have in common? I hit the send button. If I hadn’t none of this would be possible.

So what are you waiting for? Just Hit Send!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Stressful Week

One thing I didn’t plan for in May is a sick child…yet I’ve been dealing with one all week. The little one has had one of the worst colds. Saying she’s cranky is putting it mildly. Getting any work done, even with daycare has been a challenge.

Yesterday was the first day all week she showed some signs of returning to her normal happy self. There’s a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. LOL

All joking aside, it’s difficult when your child is sick and there’s not much you can do. Sure, I help clear her nose with saline. Hubby put the humidifier in her room to assist with her breathing at night, but that’s the extent of what we can do. She’ll be two in July and the doctor’s don’t recommend any medications and I’m okay with that.

Instead I watch her on the monitor at midnight when she’s coughing. I crawl out of bed at four when she starts up again, so she doesn’t wake the hubby. I’m not sleeping, but that’s what mother’s do. Once she’s better I’ll sleep…until then I’m a tad cranky too.

On a happy note I received an email yesterday that my story – Your Marriage is Killing You has made the finals. It will be published in the Lemons to Lemonade Chicken Soup for the Soul book. I’m very excited to have another story out. Look for it in August!
On an even happier note - It's Friday!!!!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Breaking the Bottle

Four children. Yes, I have four children. I’ve delivered five, but that’s another story. Three of those children were off the bottle by age one. Teagan is not. I’m at my wits end. She’s nearing her second birthday and I can’t seem to wean her off the bottle. Now before you start sending me hate mail about how I’m a terrible mom – DON’T. I already feel guilty.

And in all honesty she only has her bottle for milk. She’ll drink water in a sippy cup…sometimes juice. She doesn’t seem to like juice which is fine with me.

I thought we might have made progress when our grandchildren were here over the weekend. They were drinking milk out of a sippy cup, so she had to emulate the older kids. She drank half. I silently cheered. Once they were gone the thrill wore off.

On Monday I told the hubby I’m just going to throw out all the bottles and he thought it was a good idea. Until Teagan woke up sick. Both of us had trouble denying her as sick as she was.

So, how did you do it? Did you force your child to give it up cold turkey or wean him or her?

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


Last summer or fall The Young and the Restless did a storyline on bullying. It was handled pretty good in my opinion.

With the different levels of social media, bullying is much different from when I was a teenager. Back then if we had an issue with someone he might have spread rumors, but it didn’t go as far as it does now. We might have even gotten in a fist fight, but it wouldn’t go viral and it wouldn’t involve a gang beating.

Our daughter was bullied in middle school. The girl bullied our daughter because she lost her brother – our son.

It was difficult enough for our family to deal with the loss of our precious son. He was only six days old when he died, due to premature birth. To have a student at school bullying our daughter over this confused us.

Lexi wanted to beat the girl up and in all honesty, I understood. BUT I told her it wasn’t the way to handle things. Lexi threatened every day to follow her off school grounds and beat her up. It never happened.

I tried to get the school involved but they didn’t want to. I had print outs of the online bullying to show them it was taking place. They didn’t feel it was a school issue, even though it was happening IN SCHOOL too. This is something I still don’t understand.

The bullying stopped for a bit and when it resumed I’d had enough. Our family was trying to handle their own grief. We didn’t need outside forces adding to it. At my wits end I hunted down the girl’s mother and called her. Maybe this woman would talk some sense into her daughter.

Her mother immediately went on the defense when I called her. I expected it. What mother wouldn’t want to protect their child? What shocked me the most was I learned that this family had a son with CP, Cerebral Palsy. Their son was born prematurely.

My heart was breaking on so many levels. Why is this child torturing my daughter over her brother’s death if she knows what it’s like to have a brother born prematurely? I’ll be honest, I have a few assumptions, but they’re not facts so I won’t speak of them. All I know is it still breaks my heart.

When we explained the situation to our daughter SHE looked at the girl differently and found a way to ignore her. Lexi felt sorry for the girl.

We had Lexi see a therapist to deal with her grief and thankfully she’s recovered. The best part is once they reached high school the girl was never in any of her classes.

Our bullying situation ended on a happy note, but not all will. Please if you know your child is being bullied or bullying…do something. Don’t count on the school to handle it, because they may not. Get involved. You could save a life.   

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Friday, May 10, 2013

Let 'er Rip

I’ve read a ton of advice books over the years. In fact I still do on occasion. In this business, I don’t think you can ever stop learning. Knowledge is power.

Today I’m talking about writer’s block. You know when your muse decides to take a vacation. You can sit for hours staring at a blank page, or solitaire becomes your best friend. That masterpiece you wanted to create is put on hold because, well frankly your muse doesn’t give a sh*t.

One thing almost every book suggests is to free write. Pull out a journal and write. It doesn’t have to make sense to anyone but you. Heck, it doesn’t even have to make sense to you. You can write a grocery list, a to-do list, or just how you’re feeling in that moment.

Write a good-bye letter to your muse if it helps. Just write, write, write until it charges your muse again.

Basically, let ‘er rip.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


Ding. Ding. Ding. You know the familiar sound. New email. A text message. All distractions.

In this social media era, there are too many reasons not to write.

I’ll just check email quick.

If I only surf Facebook for five minutes, I’ll recharge my brain.

I should text my mom and see how she’s doing.

These are all the excuses I use when I’m struggling to get words on paper. Sometimes it works. I give myself a goal. After 500 words I can see what’s new in my inbox.

 Read some blogs after 100 words.

Not all days are full of distractions. Some days I can sit with my laptop and the words flow. Those are the days I enjoy. Once I’m done with whatever project I’m working on, I can spend time online or reading. :o)

After all I’ve earned it.

How do you keep the distractions at bay?

Monday, May 6, 2013

Monday Again

Boy the weekend seems to fly by. It was busy, but fun. We saw Ironman 3 over the weekend. I wrote a story for Chicken Soup for the Soul – Dating Game.

The story of the day I met my husband is pretty humorous, so I decided to share it in a story. I hope the Chicken Soup editors enjoy it.

I have a pile of ideas and magazines I’d like to submit to on my desk. Each day I take the one on the top and work from there. The process is going pretty good so far. Will I keep up the momentum? I plan to.

If I miss a day, I try to make it up the next…it works for me and in all honesty the only thing that matters is if I reach my goal of 30 at the end of the month.

Now it’s time for me to get to work.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

1 Down 29 to Go

I most likely won't update every day, but I did manage to submit a story yesterday! I love to challenge myself.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

30 Day Challenge!

I’m challenging myself this month… 30 days 30 submissions.
It’s a lot for me, with a full time job and other writing commitments. But I want to add new magazines and trades to writing. There are a few new to me online mags I want to submit.
I know there's 31 days in May, but I'm taking Mother's Day off, because I am a mother after all. And not the mother my ex used to call me. ;)
I’ve made a list of about ten ideas for stories/articles. I’m off to a good start.

Now ready, set, GO!