Friday, May 30, 2014

It's Begun

The evilness, that is.  Strawberries.  Over the years my yard has been overrun by them.  You may think that is a good thing.  It is.  The first few days.  After that, not so much.  Especially when I'm not particularly enamored with strawberries to begin with.

I picked the first quart today.  I was thrilled!  No, not because I had a quart of strawberries.  Because something deep inside told me that the harvest will be much lighter this year than it has been others!  In fact, the season might be over before I get tired of them.  Yay!  Happy girl!

Have a good weekend, all!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Never Forget...

Saturday, May 24, 2014


 every word in this poem, you will be speaking English better than 90% of the native English speakers in the world.

After trying the verses, a Frenchman said he’d prefer six months of hard labor to reading six lines aloud.


Friday, May 23, 2014


Howie Came Through Unscathed!

Amazing sky! Something HUGE is coming.
Downtown Reading

Courtyard with Pretties

Target Parking Lot

Pretties Before the Storm

Pretties After the Storm
Yesterday my little corner of the world had a bit of a hail storm.  It was like nothing I'd ever seen before!  One road actually required a snow plow to deal with all the hail.  Windshields were smashed.  Headlights were smashed.  Cars looked like a hoard of angry Oompa-Loompas who'd eaten their way through the chocolate factory went at them with sledge hammers.  So badly that I've heard of several being totaled by insurance companies after just a phone call.  Car lots lost entire inventories.  Windows were broken all over the place.  Hell, the skylights in the local mall came down and there was tennis ball sized hail splashing in the fountains.  I've surfed pictures with morbid fascination because as I said, it was a brand new experience for me. It was 83 when the storm started, 65 when the first wave ended.  Surfaces where hot.  And then the hail came creating ultra creepy mist.

Here are just a few pics.  Some are mine.  Some are borrowed because they are amazing.  I'm sure you can find more if you're interested.

Look what it did to the pretties I planted.  Believe it or not I think the majority of them are going to make it.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Did You Vote Today?

If yours is a state that's having primaries, that is. Did you? If not, why not? I did. At 5:04 I was voter #42 out of a possible 988. I'd like to say the apathy in my area astounds me only sadly it does not. Not any more. That's about the norm for a primary. There might have been double the voter turnout in a major election but rarely more than that. Why have we, as a society, stopped caring? Stopped trying to make a difference? Become content to let the status quo stand, complaining but not bothering? It took me all of four minutes from the time I parked my car to the time I was back in it. Not really a big inconvenience, was it? Pathetic, people. Just pathetic.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Pretties from Today's Walk

Azalea Grotto

A Message from the Universe - Stop and Enjoy the Pretties!




Tuesday, May 13, 2014


I am finally poor enough to qualify for a local program.  Free smoke detectors! 

I filled out the form a week and a half ago.  Got a call within days. 

And tonight four very personable firemen showed up at my door.  They came in their firetrucks.  Hey, they were on duty.  What else would they bring?

Amazingly there was actually parking on my narrow half street.  Sure did make the neighbors wonder.

In they came, carrying a huge tote.  I signed a paper and off three of them went, clambering all over my house, installing detectors as they went while the fourth pleasantly answered all my questions.  The program began with channel 6 in Philadelphia.  Three years ago a WFMZ, a local TV station set a similar program in motion here.  They still do the advertising but the fire department has a grant to supply the detectors.

Not cheap detectors either.  These are long-lasting fancy detectors.  Ten years with no batteries to replace.  All in under fifteen minutes.  Some good has come from all those taxes I pay!

Call your local fire department and ask if they do the same.  If not, suggest they initiate a program.  Keep you safe, just like me.  Thank you, gentlemen!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Is It Worth It?

The instant gratification of today’s flowers.

Eons ago when I started gardening annuals were sold in six packs for not a lot of money.  Over the years the six packs became four packs.  For more money of course.

Today I went gathering pretties for the various yards I tend.  The same things I used to purchase for next to nothing in multi-packs are now sold in four inch pots.  For twice the price.

Yes, the plants are much larger and already covered with flowers.  As soon as I put them in the gardens looked like they’d been growing for weeks.  Pretty?  Of course.  But today is May 9th.  There are potentially five more months to the growing season.  I’m not certain that the extra it costs to have instant blooming gardens is worth it.  Personally, I enjoy taking a tour of the new plants, watching them take hold and start to grow.  For me, larger flowers means I miss out on part of the enjoyment of planting pretties.
Just my opinion of course.  Happy weekend!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Customer Service Lives!

I toss my change in a jar and use it when I am in need of a treat.  Last Thursday the temperature topped 70 for the first time.  To me that meant time for my favorite summer treat, frozen limeade from Wawa, our local mini market that just celebrated 50 years in business.  With whipped cream that I mix in as soon as I’ve taken a few sips.

I grabbed a handful of change on my way out the door only to discover that the ultra nummy limeade has been replaced by peach lemonade.  Peach lemonade?  My first reaction was no!  Then I stopped to consider and decided to give it a try, loving peaches as I do.  Yes, I know, not all things processed that are supposedly peach flavored are good but I was there and wanted a treat.

Um.  Should have stuck with my first reaction.  It wasn’t awful  but it is not a flavor I will ever order again.  So I poked around Wawa’s website and found their contact information.  I emailed them with my disappointment and opinion on the replacement. 

Within two hours (and after 5:00) I had a very nice response from Brianna, a Wawa customer engagement sr. analyst since 2007.  She was extremely pleasant, thanking me for my input, stating she would pass it on to marketing.  She also promised a gift card so that I may try another flavor on them.

Today, less than a week later, the gift card arrived with a polite, upbeat letter from Brianna encouraging me to contact Wawa with my thoughts again.  Yes, I am impressed.  Someone remembers how customer service should be.  I knew I liked Wawa for more than their nummy drinks and fresh-made sandwiches.  No wonder they’ve made it this long.

Click here to see if there's a Wawa near you. And while you're there tell them to bring back frozen limeade!

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Best Thing about Spring...

Redbud Trees!!!


Friday, May 2, 2014

Welcome Elsie Hepner!, I'm turning my blog over to fellow writer, Elsie Hepner.  She has a new book out, Furious Temptation, the second in her Furies Series

First, a little about Elsie -

Elise Hepner lives with her husband and two eccentric cats in Maryland. She spends the majority of her free time in her basement office concocting smutty characters and sinful situations that leaves readers satisfied. When not writing, she researches everything from automatons in the 18th century to gladiatorial rules in Ancient Rome. She prides herself on being an avid information hound as well as a blog reading addict--which is her favorite way to procrastinate. Her previous publications include books and stories with Entangled, Excessica, Xcite, Ellora's Cave, Secret Cravings Publishing and Cleis Press.

Some thoughts from Elsie on writing this series - 

Three years ago if someone told me I’d be writing paranormal novels about Greek Furies into BDSM I’m pretty sure I would have curled up in a corner and cried because of the idea of creating whole worlds from scratch. But after a year of research—and research on my research—I’ve learned that my World Bible is my god. Any little inconsistency or tiny detail gets chocked up in my bible until that file on my computer is as big as an actual Fury book. From the differences between demon made—demons who are transitioned from humans or dead human souls—to demon born, or demons who are born from two other demons, my Greek mythos can get a little complicated.

Writing a paranormal novel was one of the hardest things I’d ever undertaken and after writing my second one, Furious Temptation, I can’t say that it got any easier. Even with all my research laid out in an easy to find order, the genre still stretches my limits. I don’t know how everyone else does it, but for me, it involves a lot of hair pulling, a lot of desk banging, and many, many episodes of True Blood.

But it’s a task I’m glad I came to bat for because it’s been a wild ride. Filled with portals for mystical elevator travel, blood play, and voyeurism with a side of wood nymph—I never thought I’d create a world I loved on paper as much as I love it in my mind. Whenever I feel like doubting myself, I pull up my World Bible and marvel at my mastery, and it fluffs up my ego for 2.5 seconds until it’s time to write again. My research keeps me on task, keeps me writing, keeps me creatively reaching and occasionally reminds me how far I’ve come in the last few years.

So maybe I’ll go curl up into a corner now?

And now a bit about Furious Temptation

For millennia Megaera, a Fury, has functioned as Hades right hand by passing judgment on demons who break the sacred laws. Stalwart in her  moral compass, but harboring a curse triggered by rage, she walks a thin line between perfection and destruction. But when she digs into a case  uncovering a string of demon rapes, she incites a war with Mount Olympus that could ripple chaos throughout the ages.

 Omen Cole was demon made during the Civil War after repeated torture at the hands of his enemies.  Sentenced to an eternity as watchdog over  his emotionally frail, once human ex-wife, he’s haunted that he couldn’t save her from a brutal assault.

 Now it’s happened again. And Megaera needs his testimony. Omen will sell his body—and anything else—to avenge his fragile ex-wife. If that means  an alliance with Megaera, he’ll make it the most memorable of their eternity.

You can find Elsie at her website, on Facebook and on Twitter.  Click on anything in red or the book cover to get there.

Happy reading!