You old Son of a Gun

Whenever I hear people complain about their in-laws, I thank my lucky stars once again for mine. Though I was madly in love with the Husband and could not wait to marry him, I also was madly in love with his family and could not wait to be a part of them. He is one of seven and often jokes that his parents like me better than they like him.

I do not dispute that. I am all kinds of awesome.

But this past year, my mother-in-law was given every writer's dream. She was contacted by her uncle with an idea he had for a western novel. He hired her to write it and breathe life and depth into his characters and story. She worked tirelessly for months to finish the manuscript. On a whim, she submitted it to a publisher, got accepted, and it's been a whirlwind of excitement around here ever since.

In fact, the top of Chase's birthday wish list this year was a copy of Oma's book.

The book is out this month and it's fantastic. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and could not put it down. Though Oma kept it pretty clean in the event that any grandkids would one day want to pick it up, there is plenty of adventure for the rest of us: saloons, shoot outs, runaways, ladies of the night, and heroes that save the day. Without giving anything anyway, the ending will leave your jaw gaping.

So, to celebrate her big accomplishment, I am going to give one lucky reader a copy of her book. Leave a comment telling me your favorite author and come Thursday morning, I will randomly pick a winner. If you blog about the book and leave me the link, I will put in two entries for you, doubling your chance to win.

This is a great story - fun for people of all ages. Got a dad or grandpa who likes westerns? Enter and you've got a Christmas present all ready to go.

Hurry quick. Contest ends Thursday morning at 8 a.m. central time. And, yes, I will happily ship internationally.

P.S. Should you not win and want to get the book for yourself anyway, here is where you can find it.

You're all winners in my book

Wow. You internets know me better than I thought you did. I am highly impressed.

The lie amongst the truths?

I did exercise (though only once, and it was rather painful).

But since I love you all to bits and pieces, I decided to enter everybody into the contest anyway. Because you were all so nice to play along. And your guesses totally made me laugh. Courtesy of random-dot-org, the winner is:

Anonymousidahocuzin said...

It's the GLASSES!!!!

September 27, 2010 10:03:00 PM CDT

Send me your address and a little ditty is headed your way.

Now, for the stories.

Dishwasher: Still broken. New one got delivered yesterday, but the geniuses at Best Buy forgot to tell me we needed a side mount kit since they can't screw it into the granite counter tops. Will be hand-washing dishes (and cursing) for another week or so. Grrr.

Chase's finger: No stitches needed; they used the glue to stick it back together. He's got a very cool scar and has hopefully learned when NOT to use a pocket knife in the kitchen.

Glasses in the toilet: True. And very gross.

McKay's bloody toe: Also very gross. Healing nicely thanks to me forcing him daily to soak it in anti-bacterial wash and then bandage it up. Just call me Nurse Ratched.

Garage door: Fixed and working like a charm (about the only thing around here that is though).

Sword Cake & Turkey dinner: Chase's birthday feast pick. It totally rocked. I was exhausted but felt like super mom. And, yes, I washed all those dishes by hand, too.

Getting kicked out of a fall festival by a cop: Tragically and horrifyingly true. I had a senior portrait session at one of my favorite parks here last Saturday. Unfortunately, it was the one weekend a year where they have this festival, and a policeman very rudely asked us to leave. I'm still unclear why. We weren't in the way or trying to pose our pictures on the middle of the craft tables or anything. But whatevs. We had mostly finished up, but it was pretty embarrassing in front of my client. Never had that happen before. Hope to never repeat it.

Thanks for playing. You peeps are the best internet friends a girl could ask for...

Trying desperately to find the humor in it all

The last few weeks sort of kicked my trash. I've spent more time in tears in the last two weeks than I have in the last two years.

But I'm over it and moving on. Today is a new day (and all that crap). So we're going to play a little Monday morning game that is a favorite of seventh grade parties everywhere:

Truths and a lie.

Below, you will find a list of things that actually happened to me this week, and one thing that didn't. Pick out the lie, tell me which one it is, and every correct answer will be thrown into the mix for a prize of some sort.

Last week:

My dishwasher breathed its last (resulting in me hand-washing the dishes EVERY. DAMN*. DAY. while waiting for the new one to arrive).

I took Chase to urgent care for a cut on his finger that he received while slicing banana bread with a pocket knife (because using a normal knife like a human is clearly beneath him).

I dropped my glasses in the toilet (after, not before).

I had to bandage McKay's bloody toe after he stubbed it and ripped the nail clean off.

I did not exercise at all.

I went to drive a carpool to the church and found that the garage door had broken a spring and would not open, resulting in the kids and I being stranded.

I single-handedly killed 96 fruit flies (honestly, where are they coming from?).

I made a huge, traditional turkey dinner and a sword-shaped cake, all on the same day.

I spent $150 on co-pays at the doctor's office in one week.

And I got kicked out of a fall festival by a policeman.

So take your guesses. Which is the one lie in all these terrible, awful, no-good truths? Contest ends Tuesday at noon.

*Don't worry. I've already given the jar a quarter. It was totally worth it.

And the winning city is...

Boston, baby!

The picture for the contest was taken in at one of my favorite places in Concord. It was at the North Bridge --the serene, tranquil place spoken of by Ralph Waldo Emerson in his poem, "Concord Hymn." It was quite literally the site of the first battle in the American Revolution.

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April's breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood
And fired the shot heard round the world.

A few of you guessed correctly. A lot of you guessed wrong.

And some of you were absolutely hilarious in your guesses.

If ONLY I could go to Lallybroch with one red-headed, kilt-wearing Scotsman! Yum. (Read this book and you'll want to go, too.)

But since there can only be one winner, courtesy of Random-dot-org:

Cindy from AZ

Send me your address and a little ditty is headed your way.

I will be back tomorrow with pictures galore, stories, and a very funny conversation with a pedicab driver about my thighs.

Right now, I should be unpacking and doing laundry, but I find myself here at the computer, trying to catch up on the hundreds of blogs in my reader -- getting up only to get myself more handfuls of the highly overpriced/very touristy Boston Baked Beans we brought home.

Which by no means are helping the matter of the aforementioned thighs.

See you soon, peeps. It's good to be home.

Calling all the local peeps

A little deliciousness for your Friday viewing pleasure:

I know, right?

Want to go see them?

Leave me a comment by midnight on Sunday, May 24th, and I will draw one lucky winner who will receive two tickets for the show. You will also receive passes for the meet and greet with the artists after the show, courtesy of the One2One Network. The show is Saturday, May 30th in St. Louis. Enter as many times as you'd like.

What can I say? I really liked getting all those comments.

I plan to be there with the fabulous Oma in tow. You might get to see me, too, if you're extra lucky.

I'll be the chubby one sneaking in M&Ms and diet coke in my gigantic purse.