Remember the year I forgot to get my husband a chocolate bunny and he was devastated? Which was like three years ago, so go me for remembering. Sort of. As Meatloaf said, “Two outta three ain’t bad.”

So, anyway, I really stepped up my Easter game this year. Got to make a basket for my granddaughter (which I filled with books because Nana Lori is going to make a reader out of that girl). And my daughters got things they were dying for but had no idea they were getting. It was great. Part of the reason I indulged so much is because my husband helped me do the shopping this year (first time ever). He completely negates the better judgment side of me by saying, “Get it if you want.” I can’t argue with that.

Naturally, he was there so I couldn’t surprise-buy him a chocolate bunny.

And then… well, I forgot. I had Easter in the bag. A literal bag, hidden in my closet, all finished. I remember thinking about it once, but then I was in a hurry.

Come Easter, I had to tell him I’d forgotten. He wasn’t really as emotionally bereft as the first time so I kind of wonder if he didn’t buy himself one, to be honest. But, that’s not the point.

The worst part is, the man bought me a Twix Easter egg. He got me candy and I had forgotten his favorite thing. Well, his favorite thing about Easter. I’m pretty sure his favorite things are his Harley, the kids, and me–in that order.

So, basically, I just lost at marriage. Beat at my own game. It’s a good thing I have a Twix Easter egg to drown my shame in.

I forgot to buy one damn thing and I lost at marriage--Easter Edition! Click To Tweet

The time I almost died. Featuring: a killer infection, Dr. Ridenhour, and my book, Infamous. Oh, and some sage advice on living.Settle in for a little story. As usual with me, there’s some drama and a little bit of humor.

You guys remember when I told you I’d become sick earlier this year, so sick I almost died? I wanted to tell you a little more about that.

I was getting ready to send in my manuscript from what’s called an “R & R”–revise and resubmit.

Even though I didn’t know they’d accept it, I just had a feeling. This was it, my chance to break into publishing.

First, let me set the stage a little. I’d had surgery in December. And even though it was over a month later (an awfully long time to show symptoms of becoming septic), I knew something was going wrong for well over a week before I ended up in the hospital.

I was sick, and it got worse every day. I called my surgeon; they called me in medicine for the nausea. Not uncommon with the type of surgery I’d had.

I went to see my surgeon. He told me that even though I’d been running a fever well over 102 degrees, I wasn’t running one at that point, and he just assumed I’d had a stomach bug.

Two days later, I was violently ill, my fever was 104 degrees. I would become desperately chilled as it spiked, then sweaty and hot when it broke. Over and over I went through this. Finally, I went to the hospital, no longer able to say I was going to be okay. I was also a little wonky in the head–a serious fever will do that.

I was hospitalized for eight days while they tried to get this raging infection under control. And one doctor saved my life.

I was trying to remember why I had to fight to live (my kids and husband) and this pervasive question kept popping up. Who would edit my book if I died? Who would sign the publishing contract? No one. It would never see the light of day.

In comes the internal medicine doctor I was referred to. I’m laying in the hospital bed, half out of it, half blasé because I was too sick to be scared, even.

I was not too sick to giggle when the doctor introduced himself, because apparently on the inside I am twelve. “Dr. Ridenhour.” Pronounced RIDE-an-hour. It just struck me as perversely funny and I swore right then that if he helped me, I’d put him in a book someday.

Lucky for me, he was not only an attractive man with a cool name, he was brilliant. He pinpointed right away that I had an internal abcess from the surgery and had slowly gone septic. My body was so close to going into septic shock, I still have flashbacks to the smells of that hospital room, the tastes of the saline as it hit my IV. The night before they gave me antibiotics (finally), when my fever had spiked to 105, and I was having trouble breathing. The nurses packed me in ice and stood around my bed watching anxiously. I was in serious trouble. And I was going to die.

I know not everyone is religious, but I know God brought Dr. Ridenhour into that room to save my life. Not just, obviously, for my manuscript (that is publishing next month–yay!), but for my kids and husband. My husband had lost his mother and best friend only seven months prior to my illness. He couldn’t lose anyone else. My kids had lost a loving great-grandfather and their grandmother just nine months before. And for me. I’m not done living yet.

At the time, I was too sick to be scared for myself. I worried about my family and my book. Now, I get chills when I think how close I came to not having this year, and however many more I have left. My daughter celebrated her twelfth birthday last month and I almost missed that. It hits at times like that.

So, the moral of the story is threefold. One, don’t take even one day for granted. Two, look for Dr. Ridenhour in a book of mine someday. And three, buy my book next month because I almost died and you’d never have seen it. It’s a flipping miracle book.

Click here to find out more about my book and to access pre-order links.

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The Time I Almost Died: A killer infection, hot doctor, miracle book, and advice on living. Click To Tweet

dafrn hollywood dirtI recently decided to jump on the bandwagon and read Hollywood Dirt. I couldn’t put it down until it was all gone. Plus, can you say, “Hot, hot, hot?”

The heroine is just a normal girl from the South, so I thought dating advice would be totally helpful from this book (even if the hero is the hottest actor alive).

Dating Advice from Romance Novels: Hollywood Dirt

  1. Always sleep in your good red panties and leave the front door unlocked. And sleep late, at least until a crazy sexy guy shows up to be overwhelmed by your hotness.
  2. Play hard to get. Apparently, that’s the way to a movie star’s heart.
  3. Kick rude people out of your house. Go ahead, you know you want to, and this way, you might become a star.
  4. Just because you’re insanely attracted to the biggest star on the planet, like you had personal happy time with him in mind, is no reason to not knee him in the balls.
  5. If, by some chance, you’re a gorgeous movie star whose wife broke your heart… go for the girl next door. Every time.

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house1Actual thing I just had to say:

Don’t do wild jazz hands while your sister is trying to do math. Math and jazz hands do NOT go together.

if the shoe fitsI am reading all the Megan Mulry books I can get my hands on (like I do when I discover a new-to-me fave author).  Without further ado, some guidance at looooove.

Dating Advice from Romance Novels: If the Shoe Fits

  1. Save your v-card for just the right opportunity, then toss it aside for a fling, because that guy might turn out to be the love of your life.
  2. It’s really awkward when your dad comes in the morning after. Even when you’re in your twenties.
  3. It’s doubly awkward when you bring a fake boyfriend to make your fling jealous, then forget the poor slob to hang all over aforementioned fling.
  4. Internet espionage for love. Just don’t.
  5. Jealous outbursts when you’re barely more than a booty call. Just don’t.

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201502120904061. It’s totes acceptable for a forty-year-old woman to say adorbs, fab, and obvs. (That’s obviously, for those not in the know.) It’s totes acceptable to say those things at home, where your kids just roll their eyes. Because if you say those things outside, people look at you like you just grew another head.

2. I’ve had the sex, period, pregnancy, and STD talks so many times and answered so many awkward questions, I can now discuss anything. ANYTHING. Seriously, I’m considering renting myself out to other moms.

3. Nothing on this Earth or in hell compares to taking a teenage girl shopping. I’d explain how awful it is, but… I’ll start crying.

4. I’m really good at ruining lives, having ruined all their lives on multiple occasions.

5. “You’re not leaving the house like that,’ is not something a tween/teen girl can apply to any future situations, no matter how smart she is. You will still always have to say it, thus ruining her life. Obvs.

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Everything I learned raising three brilliant and hellacious daughters. Click To Tweet

DAFRN Queen MabI read Queen Mab by Kate Danley in less than a day. (BTW, I also read her book The Woodcutter and both are divine.) Naturally, a story with Romeo and Juliet at its center lends one to learn some awesome dating advice.

Dating Advice from Romance Novels: Queen Mab

  1. Don’t let some dude talk you into moving your sacred bull or other sacred farm animals, because that just makes a whole century-long, life-or-death kind of mess.
  2. Don’t make wagers with aforementioned dude-who-already-tricked-you. Clearly, your bitterness will be your undoing.
  3. UNLESS, of course, you meet a guy who can only see the good in you because chicks and demigods really dig that shit.
  4. If a woman asks what you’d like to dream about, the correct answer is her. Duh.
  5. If people call you ugly, just tell yourself they’re haters. You know you look fine.

sueandmikeJMy youngest kid has an active imagination. And she’s more often than not got a quippy comeback for everything. Every. Thing.

So, allow me to introduce her lizard/dolphin family (The dolphins are the adoptive parents of Susan and Brenda). What’s amusing to me is that this isn’t a one time thing. They have been Susan, Michael, and Brenda and they have been fruitful and multiplied (except Brenda). The Saga of Susan and Michael: One terrible closet mishap later, they were separated. Click To Tweet

Without further ado, overheard in my house…

Me: I found that lizard, the purple one, in the mess we call ‘your closet.’
P: Susan! That’s great, because these [lizards she bought today] are her babies. Now I just have to find Michael.
Me: I can’t believe you just threw Susan and Michael in the mess we call ‘your closet’ like that.
P: Well, they were planning to take a vacation.
Me: Apparently to Trashville, Indiana (I don’t know why Indiana, guys. Seriously, Indiana is lovely.)
P: Yeah. Hope we can find Michael. He’s got all these kids now, and he got lost on his way to the gift shop.

Later that day…

P: I found Michael. He brought back mugs and t-shirts that say ‘I heart Trashville, Indiana.”

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As you can see from the pic, we found everyone, including Brenda, who ran off to Lost Vegas with the Incredible Lizarus. No lie, y’all.

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freakoutC. and I were in Wal-Mart today and her ankle was hurting and I just always hurt after Wal-Mart. Usually, she loads the groceries in the back for me, but today, she said she needed help. I told her that was fine.

She said, “We need to hurry,” and I replied, “We’ll throw these [groceries] in the back like we’re trying to get rid of a dead body.”

Fast forward, we’re checking out and C. is pulling the bags off the little turn-thing. I said, “Be careful, there might be breakable stuff in there.” I mean, Ragu isn’t free, amiright?

C. said, “Mom, how are we going to throw these bags in the back like a dead body if I have to worry about breaking things?”

She said this out loud.In front of people. As though we were well-practiced in the art of disposing of dead bodies.

The cashier’s eyes widened and she looked away from C. And then she just avoided eye contact with us the entire time.

Me and my kid: creeping people out every. single. time.

Tweet: “Me and my kid: creeping people out every. single. time. | http://goo.gl/nTZ08U”

 

house rightGuess who had to buy a hot water heater and spent 24 hours without hot water which, I know, is so first-world-whiny, but it was awful.

Anyway, this happened.

Me: That tank isn’t going to get by that pipe.
Husband: Yes, it will.

Three hours later…

Husband: I had to take out that pipe.

The very. next. day…

Husband: I think the dresser will fit there without any problem.
Me: There’s no way. The bathroom door wouldn’t open.
Husband: It would mostly open. (Whatever that means.)
Me: I don’t think so. Remember the pipe? I don’t think you’re very good at this.

A tape measure later…

Husband: There’s no way that’s going to fit there.

Basically, I'm always right. And no hot water is bad. So bad. #blog Click To Tweet