About Me

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Jersey Shore, United States
In case any of my friends or family members actually read this Blog, please consider all Names, Characters, Places and Incidents to be the product of the author's imagination and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events or locales are entirely COINCIDENTAL...Muaaah!! Now, really, about me: I bring the crazy wherever I go, so I've been told...I make fun of myself more than anyone else ever could. I hate: the awkward silence in elevators, watches with no numbers, picky eaters, Cancer and legalism. I love: coffee, stalking Hugh Jackman, my Spanx, COMMENTS, sarcasm and writing: Middle Grade, NA, YA Paranormal and Urban Fantasy.

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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Insecure Writers Support Group, awkward author signings..

Hey Guys- Hope you all had a fantastic New Year's. I have two posts going up today,  Wednesday, January 2, 2013. You can find my usual, first Wednesday of the month, IWSG post here. If you'd like more information about the Insecure Writer's Support Group,  it's hosted by  the amazing Alex J. Cavanaugh- you can sign up and learn more here: - http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com/p/the-insecure-writers-support-group.html

I'm also posting my entry to the 4th Annual "No Kiss" Blogfest hosted by the fabulous Miss Frankie Diane Mallis. Please bear with me this month as it may take me a little while to hop around and visit/comment on both. Thanks- and happy hopping!

On Friday, December 21st,  instead of  sitting around waiting for the world to end,  I chose to go to an author signing at my local library. The author was none other than Brat Pack actor/director turned travel writer-  Andrew McCarthy.
Andrew McCarthy, my sis Adrienne-all smiles because she lurves him, ME, crazy lady who jumped in my pic! *true story*

Now, most of my followers of a certain age (like me) would probably remember  Andrew McCarthy best from his appearances in some classic 80's movies such as: Less Than Zero, Pretty in Pink, Class, St. Elmo's Fire, Weekend  at Bernie's, Mannequin..look him up on IMDB. He has quite an impressive resume. But he didn't write a biography. And he wasn't there to talk about his acting career. Andrew McCarthy, has become a travel writer, and a very talented one at that.

I didn't expect to like his travel writing all that much, but after reading his book, "The Longest Way Home" was pleasantly surprised at how much I actually did. If I had to compare it to something else current, it was like the male equivalent of "Eat Pray Love".  And guess what friends? Believe it or not, McCarthy could be an honorary member of the IWSG.

Mr. McCarthy is very candid about having to push past crippling fear, insecurity and shyness. He is a loner by nature and hates crowds.  He attributes  traveling alone to far off places that helped him mature and grow, eventually stretching him to move beyond those fears.

McCarthy's travel experiences combined with his honest, heart felt accounts of  his inner turmoil including the push and pull of wanting to be home, yet yearning and needing to travel, really spoke to me. Other people in the audience, not so much.

The man was there to talk about his new book. He was excited about his first book being published, as any new author would be. But I guess to some people, when you are a movie star, they will never see you as anything but. I felt sorry for McCarthy, as he had several "Brat Pack" groupies in the audience who made the Q&A section of his signing,  all kinds of  awkward. He dealt with them very graciously, but it was obvious they never read his book and had zero intentions of doing so. They were just there to have their "Pretty In Pink" posters and  DVD's signed.  Which was a shame, if you ask me.

My experience has left me curious. So now I must ask all of you-  have any of you gone to an awkward author signing? Have you experienced any questions that were wildly inappropriate or  threw you for a loop?  Anyone ever encounter any hecklers or haters in the audience? And, my IWSG brothers and sisters, do you dread even the thought of doing your own author signing or are you the type who would relish in them?

Monday, December 24, 2012

4th Annual No Kiss Blogfest Promo

Hey All- I know it's the holidays and we are all pressed for time. But I want to make sure you didn't miss out on the opportunity, (in case you forgot) or haven't signed up yet for the 4th Annual No Kiss Blogfest- over at Frankie Diane Mallis Blog- there is still time!  Here are the rules snatched from her blog-

Things You Should Do To Prepare For The Ultimate Non-Kissage Festivities!
1) Sometime between now and Jan 2, 2013 write a post about the No Kiss Blogfest to let everyone know you are participating and that they should too. Why? Because it's awesome! (Please link back)

2) Sign up for the No Kiss Blogfest by filling in the Mr. Linky below. Because Mr. Linky is awesome.

3)Tweet about No Kiss Blogfest, using the hash tag: #nokissblogfest because #hashtagsareawesome

4) After you've recovered from New Years Eve, write a blog sharing your Almost Kiss, No Kiss Blogfest entry (either one from your WIP, one you just wrote, one from a book, movie or tv show, or even a really hot almost-kiss picture)and post on January 2, 2013!!! Because reading your posts are awesome! (Don't forget to link back)

Get ready for the steamiest day of 2013! It's going to rule!

* Let me just preface this blog fest by saying, Frankie's blog is an amazing resource for writers. And it's also one of the first blogs I ever started following. Her No Kiss Blogfest is always great and I urge you all to join in.  In case anyone is interested, I thought I'd post my entry from last year-

This is a no-kiss scene from “Breaking Cardinale Rules”, my paranormal romance. 

I made Drew take me to the boardwalk. It had been so long since I'd had any fun and I guessed someone like Drew, had never been there before. And I was right. As we walked along the boards I made him stop periodically and do all of the worst, most touristy things you could possibly do.

It was wicked fun, almost like a date. At first he would not relax at all because of all the people and noise and general commotion. He protested a lot. But I teased him out of his self-imposed up-tightness as much as I possibly could.

I bated him into playing some of the games knowing how naturally competitive he is. Did it surprise me that he won every single time? Nope. Ring toss, darts, shot gun (of course) basketball, frog bog, you name it, he won it. After I had about twenty ginormous stuffed animals too many Drew decided it wouldn't be fair if he kept playing. I suggested he take the extras and hand them out to all the little kids that walked by and actually had enough guts to approach him. The vendors were delighted when we walked away.

Boardwalk pizza is insanely good so I made sure he tried a slice. Of course, I insisted on funnel cakes for desert. He drew the line when I suggested the fun house, mumbling something like, “too many variables” so I didn't push it. But I did torture him until he agreed to sit in one of those little photo booths and take pictures with me. It's a really small seat and instead of sitting sideways and all awkward, I just jumped right onto his lap. Taking someone like Drew by surprise, was more fun than any of the rides. He recovered and then shocked me, when I felt his lips brush by my neck and settle near my ear. He leaned in and whispered, “Thank you.”

My smile in those pictures was so incredibly broad it made Julia Robert's look small. Drew didn't smile. On film, the innate beauty I can see inside him, kind of got lost in the translation. He wound up looking like he did when anyone else looked at him: absolutely terrifying. Before I could comment, he snatched the pictures from my hand and put them in his wallet. At first, I was taken back, but then I decided that it was all kinds of awesome.

How I convinced him to get on the ferris wheel, I'll never know. When it stopped at the top, he looked at me with those fierce green eyes and that all-encompassing intensity of his. All the noises of the boardwalk faded into silence and the bright lights died away. I swear that stare of his laid me so bare, I felt like a ripe banana, he just peeled. The wind picked up and that stinking ferris wheel carriage started swaying back and forth, making my stomach feel as uncomfortable as my mind.

Would Drew try and make a move on me? Would he kiss me? And more importantly, considering how broken and dead I am inside, would I actually want him to?

He leaned closer, then closer still, until he was just inches from my face. Deep down inside, I felt something ignite. It was a slow burn, just a spark, mind you. But enough for me to know if I gave place to it, it could quickly turn to flames. I didn't think it was possible for me to feel this or want to feel this, with anyone, ever again. But there it was; desire. I wanted Drew. I wanted Drew to kiss me and reignite that desire inside me, more than I wanted my next breathe. Unfortunately, this revelation came a little too late. Because it was then I realized, Drew hadn't been leaning in to kiss me, at all. He was only leaning towards me to get a closer look at something down below us, on the boardwalk. What an idiot I am! 

“What is it Drew?”

“On your left, below. Man in the brown leather jacket.”

“Um, yeah?”

“Subcompact Glock 27, right breast pocket. It's a common off-duty cop weapon, but I'll keep an eye on him, all the same.”

That's what I get for thinking GI Drew was about to kiss me, or relax, even for a second. It was pretty much at that point, I longed for nothing more than a ride to take my idiotic ass, home.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Happy Holidays!

Merry Christmas!

Wishing all of my blogging friends a very Happy Holiday Season!! I plan on celebrating them here at the Bird's Nest with the 4 F's:  Food, Family, Fun and Friends-
(Um, what were you thinking the F's stood for? )

I'd also like to leave you with a few of my favorite pictures from this Christmas season:

This is the Gingerbread Man my kid colored and turned in at school.
I love that her Gingerbread Man was the only one sporting a giant Afro and Disco Ball.


My kids thought it was hilarious when we caught these Amish boys, riding dirty. Ha!

 Peace and Blessings!!~ Jaybird

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Save A Place For Me

I'd like to dedicate this song to any of you, who lost someone close, especially around the holidays.   Give it a listen. Save a place for me Em, I'll be there soon- 10/12/68 - 12/19/08.

My nieces with my sister Emily, back in the day. xo

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A Beer for the Shower's "Party Like Slim Dyson " contest

Hey All- When I heard about A Beer for the Shower's "Party Like  Slim Dyson" contest, I immediately thought, "I'm  in." Because I love my Beer Boys. I had to show B&B my support. But I also thought, "Holy crap I'm so out of my league here!"  I did my best, but I pale in comparison to them.  If you'd  like to read the real deal-  (which I highly recommend)
Here's the link: http://www.amazon.com/Sensationally-Absurd-Times-Dyson-ebook/dp/B00AOG01FE/ref=la_B009KXWSEO_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1355671860&sr=1-4

There are the Homeless Party Rules:
1. Must be posted on Monday, December 17th, only.
2. Must contain a link to Slim and his book (we'll send you the link).
3. Even if it is hypothetical, the party can't be illegal: you can't just break into Lil Wayne's crib while he's out of town and steal all of his liquor (and his bitches).
4. You're homeless too, so you can't just throw this in your backyard and call it good. You don't have a backyard. The world is your backyard (was that deep?).
5. You can spend a total of $10. That's a whole day's wages of window washing at the corner of 18th and Broadway. Don't forget dollar stores!
6. The party must be able to accommodate 20-30 people.
7. You must have a gift for Slim, the guest of honor (don't worry, he's easy to buy for).
8. The fun part: tell us all about your party. Feel free to include pictures, videos, music, whatever. Go nuts.
9. You need to e-mail us as abeerfortheshower@gmail.com and let us know you're entering. Let's make this whole thing official. Otherwise, it's hard to keep track of who's participating. In exchange, on Sunday, December 16th, we'll e-mail you a link to the book, which is an automatic slam dunk on rule #1.

Slim got a call at the Homeless Shelter. Apparently, The "Friends of the Library" wanted to know if Slim could come down to the library and do a book signing. They wanted to throw a party, all to honor him, a  local author who made it big! Slim was beside himself with joy. You see, that's where it all began.  The library was where Slim was working on his novel "Ghangis Khon's Mongolian Starship" when he left  his journal behind. Which was  discovered by LaRoux, and later, came to be published.

At around 7:00 p.m., Slim rounded up his usual crew at the shelter, to leave for his big event.  They  jumped on the bus and when they arrived at the library, were thrilled to see the spread layed  out,  all in honor of Slim! The Friends of the Library had gone all out.  They had Cheez Whiz on crackers, little cocktail weenies and pizza bagels! High end all the way.

Slim got all teary-eyed, seeing copies of his book,  sitting there waiting for him to sign. He just couldn't believe someone would take the time to set all of this up for him. Just when he thought his heart would burst from his chest with happiness and pride, there were more surprises! The librarian got up and gave a little speech, introducing Slim, and saying how special he was and what an inspiration this local author was to them all! When she handed him a present, on behalf of the library, Slim nearly fainted.

After a mumbled "Thank You", Slim opened his gift. It was a ball-point pen. And it was the best gift  anyone had ever given him. When Slim sat down to sign his books, with his new pen, for the first time since he gained all the fame and fortune, he felt like a million bucks!

- Big Congrats to A Beer for the Shower, on their book release!  Good luck to all of the participants today.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Do You Believe?

My 8 year old daughter Frankie still believes in Santa Claus, the Easter bunny, tooth fairy, elves, pixies, mermaids...and well, you get the idea. And personally, I'm absolutely thrilled that she still does. Although, this week, I was judged harshly accused of encouraging those beliefs much longer than I should. So, I have to ask, what's wrong with that?

Am I SO evil for taking her fairy hunting in the backyard? Or leaving half-eaten carrots and reindeer tracks outside in the snow? What's so wrong about encouraging her awesome imagination?  Because once that wonder is lost, there is no going back!

My little reindeer. xo
My other two kids, were not like Frankie, at all. They were both born old ladies. With my daughter Farrah, the very first time I read  'Twas The Night Before Christmas" to her, I was all excited, waiting for her to hit me with all of the usual Santa Claus questions, like every other kid. But I should have known better, because Farrah is not like every other kid. My then four year old child silently stared me down. She followed her moment of silence with a raised eyebrow and a pursing of her little lips (her go to expression) and said:  
Here's Farrah, dressed as "Velma" from Scooby Doo, one Halloween. The perfect costume for my little Miss Smarty Pants.
"Mom, you don't really expect me to believe that, do you? It's a statistical as well as physical improbability that one person could visit every child in the entire world, in the course of one night."
"Farrah, this isn't about science, it's magic."
"Gimme a break!"

And that, my friends, was that. Subject closed. Until my little Frankie was born. From the first time I read the words, "Once upon a time" and she looked up at me big brown eyes full of wonder and awe, I  knew she was going to be different. I knew she would believe. (She would also, never beg me to wake up at 3:00 am with her, just  so we could go outside and freeze our buns off to watch the Geminid meteor shower, like her sister Farrah did this morning!)  Now, a few key people in my life  ganged up on me think this is just terrible. They think I'm terrible! They accused me of  fueling Frankie's beliefs, in an attempt to drag her childhood out as long as possible.

Um, yes. Yes I am. Guilty. But again, I have to ask, so what? Why be in a rush to make kids grow up? She's only eight. Why must I dispel the magic of Christmas? Why not let her be a kid for as long as she can? Honestly, why am I so wrong?  I have to ask this morning, what do you believe?  Anyone else get dragged outside at 3:00 a.m. to see a meteor shower? (Thank you God, for coffee!)
Faith, Frankie & Farrah-throwing the camera her "go to" expression. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Full on, Shameless, Obnoxious, Bragging Momma

OK I realize this is, without a doubt, the most obnoxious post I have ever done. And I'm sorry. Truly. But please, please, forgive me. Because I just couldn't contain my proud Momma joy. By the sheer grace of God- The Husband and I are doing something right.  My cup runneth over!  I am blown away by my girls grades. These are the report cards they brought home today.  Please don't hate, but rejoice with me, because I just had to share them here with you:

Report Card Evaluations
1 2 3 4
Knows Number Facts +
Understands Math Concepts
Works Accurately +
Vocabulary - Sight Words
Word Attack Skills
Comprehension +
Oral Reading
Participates in Group +
Listening Abilities +
Oral Expression +
Learns To Spell Assigned Words +
Uses Correct Spelling In Written Work +
Expression Of Ideas In Writing +
Capitalization and Punctuation
Works to best of his/her ability.
Exhibits self-control.
Is courteous and cooperative. +
Completes classwork assignments promptly.
Completes homework assignments on time.
Assumes responsibility.
Demonstrates neatness.
Accepts guidance. +
Listens attentively.
Uses time effectively.
Shows good attitude and effort. +
Shows desire for constant improvement.
Participates in class activities.
Participates in class discussion. +
Follows direction.
Works independently.
Works well with others. +
Able to apply new ideas.
Comes prepared.
Exhibits qualities of good citzenship. +
Demonstrates accuracy.
Respects rules and regulations.
Adjusts to new situations.

Report Card Evaluations 1 2 3 4
Oral Reading
Comprehension +
Word Attack Skills
Comment 1 05
Comment 2 14
Comment 1 02
Comment 2 05
Learns To Spell Assigned Words +
Uses Correct Spelling in Written Work
Knows Facts +
Problem Solving +
Comment 1 04
Comment 2 05
Comment 3 08
Comment 4 13
Comment 5 23
Comment 1 11
Comment 2 12
Comment 3 15
Comment 4
Comment 5
Map Skills/Geography +
Comment 1 22
Comment 2
Comment 3
Comment 4
Comment 5

Report Card Evaluations 1 2 3 4
Oral Reading
Word Attack Skills
Comment 1
Comment 2
Comment 1
Comment 2
Learns To Spell Assigned Words
Uses Correct Spelling in Written Work
Knows Facts
Problem Solving
Comment 1
Comment 2
Comment 3
Comment 4
Comment 5
Comment 1
Comment 2
Comment 3
Comment 4
Comment 5
Map Skills/Geography
Comment 1
Comment 2
Comment 3
Comment 4
Comment 5


Monday, December 10, 2012

Hugh Jackman pays his father tribute

Hopefully, this link will work and have sound!

Oops, flubbed it. It's all Hugh Jackman's fault.

This morning I got online and suddenly remembered I had  signed up for at least two different blog hops.  But I totally flubbed it.  I forgot! I'm so sorry. I have been super busy..but still it's not like me to forget. So I'm blaming Hugh Jackman. It's all his fault.

If you have been watching the news lately. you would know that HJ is everywhere!  He's been doing  press junkets for Les Miserables like crazy. But the best part is, I feel like finally, finally,  people (other than me) are  recognizing his amazing talent! It's throwing me into a tail spin. For anyone who doesn't understand why I stalk admire HJ so much, please take a minute to watch his interview from  last night on 60 minutes. That pretty much sums it  up. Can't wait to see this movie. It combines two of my favorite things, HJ and Victor Hugo.

Les  Mis was the first book I  read for my high school French IV class. And I absolutely fell in love with it. Les Mis was also the first broadway show my parents took me to see, and I was BLOWN AWAY! If you have never been to see a show on Broadway in New York City,  please, please, put it on your bucket list. There is really nothing else like it.

Again, friends, I apologize. Please forgive me. This weekend I was double and tripple booked, every day. Saturday was Breakfast with Santa and two Christmas parties. Sunday was teaching Sunday School, Christmas shopping and last night, we celebrated Hanukkah. There just never seems to be enough hours in the day to get it all done...

My friend Sabrina posted this picture on FB with the tag,:"Chanuking it up" -with Jen. LOL
Me and my friend Sabrina "Chanuking it up"

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Birthday FFF Answers

If you didn't read yesterday's Birthday Friday Fact or Fiction Post, you might want to take a look before reading the answers here...

What can I say this week, other than #1-4 are all FACT! Let me elaborate.
#1. Well, I don't think I need to elaborate on this one.... I already said way too much.
#2.  Yes, I got into a fight on the floor of the Barnes & Noble. But it wasn't my fault! This is what happened:

The Husband took child #1 and 3 to the cafe to do their homework, while child #2 and I went to check out the awesome display of Hobbit swag. While we were perusing it, I suddenly noticed a very small display with a purple Furby sitting on the floor nearby. I couldn't believe it! I had been trying to find a "Voodoo Purple" Furby for a few weeks, because child #3, (who still believes in Santa) really, really wants one. It's first on her list. I got down on the floor and said,

"Hey, Farrah, look, a purple Furby!" Oh, I thought, the box is kind of busted up and it's a bit dirty, but as my hands reached out to grab it, they caught only air. Because now standing in front of me, was a grey-haired, suit and tie wearing tool, holding MY purple Furby in his clutches. He grabbed it right out of my hands!

I looked up and said, "Really?" because I couldn't believe this tool  just snatched it from my hands!
And he replied, "That's how it is!"  What, a D-bag.

At this point, I knew I was dealing with a sub-par human being. Arguing with this lesser being in front of Child #2, would only lower me to his position . Especially when Child #2 asks:
"Mom, can I hurt  him?" (I thought it was very polite of her to ask...)
But I still said, "Um, NO."  (She wasn't happy, but went on to ask...)
"OK then, can I go get Daddy so he can really hurt him?"

At the mention of "Daddy"  suit and tie wearing tool started to back-pedal...
"My kid really wants one and I've been searching the Internet and couldn't find a purple one
(Immediately I thought, yeah, dude, I'm sitting here on the floor of Barnes & Noble, with a fever, on my birthday, because I wanted a purple Furby, all for myself. Jack-hole!@!)
Child #2 who always has my cell phone, rolled her eyes, and began texting her father. I knew if The Husband was added to this scenario, NO good would come of it. So, I said,
"You should walk away. Now."
He looked at me like I had two heads. I repeated myself.
"Go. Right now, before I change my mind and I let my ten year old kick your ass sideways." (This, is my favorite  part...He smirked.)
In a blink,  Child #2 dropped her books to the floor, raised her fists and took a fighter's stance. Something about the practiced way she moved, and her serious intent, made him take a STEP BACK. (I know, what a pud...right?) Or maybe he  thought to himself, "Holy crap, if this is the kid, what the hell is The Father like?"

Whatever his reasoning, the tool ran. And it was a good thing he did too. Because I have no doubt in my mind, my daughter Farrah, would have wiped the floor with that D-bag! And holy crap if The Husband had seen what went down a few minutes earlier, LORD have mercy! There would have been no pieces of D-bag left to pick up...

I'm proud of myself for telling him to walk away before he got hurt, caused a scene and I sent my daughter the wrong kind of Christmas message.  Keeping things contained and going the classy route, always turns out for the best anyway.

After he walked away, a supremely awesome teenage girl in a Batman sweatshirt walked up and told me she saw everything.. She said she was sorry he was such a butt munch and handed me a  VOODOO PURPLE FURBY in a pristine box that she found hidden behind the display of the one he stole! Ha.

#3. I told The Husband not to buy me anything for my birthday because I have been sick again and unable to work, so we are short on petty cash. He didn't listen. And I'm glad. Because he found this book at Goodwill for $3.00 and I absolutely LURVE it!

The picture above shows the marvelous plastic bag from Goodwill that doubled as wrapping paper. And the book, which I am loving, is filled with poetry and sonnets and John William Waterhouse pictures. He is one of my all-time favorite artists and I have copies of his pictures, hanging all over my house. Including the one depicted on the cover. That's what caught The Husband's attention so he picked it up. BEST $3.00 birthday present ever.


#4. Thank you precious Kitty, Mommy just loved her 2:00 a.m. wake-up call and birthday present.

There you have it. Well, it couldn't possibly be my birthday, if it didn't involve crazy, right?
Wishing everyone a very wonderful weekend! ~Jaybird

Friday, December 7, 2012

Birthday Friday Fact or Fiction

Wow, I  can't believe how long it's been since I last wrote a Friday Fact or Fiction post! If you thought my life ran out of shenanigans to share,  you'd be wrong. I've  just been keeping all the crazy on the DL for a while. But it was my birthday this week, so I thought it would be the perfect time to resurrect a FForF.  For those of you who are new to my blog here's how it works- I am going to list a bunch of things that MAY or MAY NOT have happened to me on my birthday. You can guess which of them are Fact or Fiction. I will post the answers tomorrow.

#1. So it was my birthday on  Tuesday. But I couldn't really enjoy it because I was mostly dead all day. The doctor scripted me a very potent antibiotic called Z-pac. I MAY or  MAY NOT have called  the pharmaceutical company and suggested they change the name of their drug to:  "Evac-u-pac". Because Oh My Word my bowels haven't been this empty since my last colonoscopy prep. Dang!

#2. I MAY or MAY NOT have gotten into a fight on the floor of Barnes & Noble. Over a purple Furby.

#3. The best birthday present I MAY or MAY NOT have received cost exactly three bucks and came from the Good Will store.

#4.  After an exhausting day, I MAY or MAY NOT have passed out on the couch in a  mint chocolate chip coma around 7:30 p.m. The Husband, who values his life, who knows how hard it is for his wife to fall asleep, left me there and went on to bed.  My cat, not used to having her mommy on the couch fast asleep at the crazy cat bewitching hour (2:00 a.m. for all of you non-cat owners) was so excited, she decided to bring me a present. She went into her toy box (yes, I am a crazy cat lady and my cat has her own toy box) and grabbed her favorite toy. A furry, surprisingly real, imitation mouse. She did the stealthy cat creep up on an unsuspecting, fully passed out, snoring me. All of a sudden, in the pitch dark,  my over-excited, playful kitty threw her wet, furry, imitation mouse up on my chest with a loud thud. I awoke with a start, and in the dark, felt what could only be a full-on real live mouse. I MAY or MAY NOT have screamed so loud and so long, I woke the entire house. And our neighbors next door....oops.

There you have it. A little slice of crazy that constitutes my life. Happy Friday Everyone! For anyone who is interested, I'll post the answers tomorrow :)

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Insecure Writer's Support Group: Perspective

This post was written for the December 2012:

If you are a writer and haven't joined the IWSG yet, I strongly urge you to go to Alex Cavanaugh's blog  http://alexjcavanaugh.blogspot.com  to check it out.

Perspective: Essentially, isn't that what writing is all about? Allowing someone else to get a sneak peek into your perspective on things.  Because here's the thing: what if nobody likes my perspective? For instance, when I see this:
The first thing that comes to my mind is this: REDNECKS. Forgive me but I was raised in the North and that's immediately what I associate that image with.  *Sorry, honestly, I don't want to insult any of my southern followers...That's just an example. BUT my mother-in-law, who was born and raised in the South, thinks of one thing and one thing only when she looks at that very same image:  HOME.
So how do you know if you are striking the right or wrong chords with your audience? Will anyone else ever be able to relate to my perspective on things?  Or  am I just kidding myself that readers will connect to my characters and their voice at all?  
These past few weeks, I've had my enormous beak shoved deep in edits/revisions of my paranormal romance, Breaking Cardinale Rules...although these lingering thoughts on perspective have been haunting me. And it's kind of left me feeling overall, extremely insecure.
What if no one gets my sense of humour?  What if people actually read it but stinking hate it? Will they blast me to the moon and back with scathing reviews?  Will I become a writing pariah?  All of these doubts keep swirling around in my crazy head.... Guess I should really finish editing the darn thing and send it out first, before I worry about all of this stuff, but what can I say, other than, I'm an INSECURE WRITER!!
PS: Despite all of my misgivings and wild insecurities, I finally had the courage to send my first few chapters out to be critiqued. And for that, I owe the IWSG big time! Because before joining this group, that was just, um, yeah, NOT going to happen in this century.

IWSG Post and The Truths about Dating and Mating Blog Tour Stop Woot Woot

Hey Guys- Please indulge me here, not only because (it's my birthday) but because I have two posts for you: My IWSG and The Bird's Nest is extremely excited to be able to host the fabulous Jaycee DeLorenzo on her The Truths about Dating and Mating blog tour. Take it away Jaycee!!

Hello, everyone!
Ivy’s mother, Angela, has an entire menu planned out in what I’ve dubbed the How to Get a Man Dinner, and today, thanks to the lovely Jaybird, I’m sharing two really delicious recipes that you’ll find on that menu (and often in my own home).


Four-Cheese Lasagna
1 lb ground beef
1 onion
4 cloves of garlic
6 crimini mushrooms
2 28oz cans of tomato sauce
1 can diced tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried parsley
1 box lasagna noodles (cooked and drained as on package)
1 9 or 10-oz bag of fresh spinach
1-1/2 cups of mozzarella cheese
½ cup cottage cheese
½ cup Parmesan
½ cup grated cheddar
2 eggs

In a skillet, cook beef, onion, garlic, and mushrooms over medium heat until meat is no longer pink and onion is transparent; drain well. Return mixture to sauce pan and add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, seasoning, and ½ cup water. Let simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour or until thick.

In a bowl, combine cottage cheese, Parmesan, cheddar, 1 cup mozzarella and eggs. Pour ½ cup of sauce on bottom of pan, then cover with 3 of the prepared lasagna noodles. Spread a layer of cheese over noodles, add 1 cup of the sauce over that, and top with a layer of fresh, uncooked spinach. Repeat layering three more times. Put remaining mozzarella over the top.

Bake at 350° for 30 minutes. Let sit for ten minutes, then serve.

Seduce Him With Flourless Chocolate Cake:


4-oz dark or bittersweet chocolate
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ cup cocoa powder
4-oz semisweet chocolate
½ cup heavy cream
Preheat oven to 375F. Line an 8-inch cake pan with parchment paper and lightly grease.

In a small, microwave-safe bowl, melt together dark/bittersweet chocolate and butter, stirring with a fork until very smooth.

Pour warm chocolate mixture into a medium mixing bowl with sugar. Whisk to combine. Beat in eggs one at a time, waiting until each has been fully incorporated to add the next. Then, mix in vanilla extract and cinnamon. Sift cocoa powder into the bowl and whisk until well-combined.

Pour into prepared cake pan.

Bake for 25 minutes.

Allow cake to cool in pan for 5 minutes, then run a knife around the edge of the cake and invert onto a serving platter.

Melt remaining 4-oz of chocolate and add in heavy cream. When well-mixed, pour over the top of the cake. Let chill for at least ten minutes, then serve.

If desired, garnish with fresh raspberries.

The Truths about Dating and Mating

Author: Jaycee DeLorenzo

Release Date: November 21, 2012

Spunky Italian coed Ivy Rossini likes to talk and push the boundaries. She gets to do both as she co-hosts Riordan College’s radio program, The Truths about Dating and Mating, alongside her lifelong best friend, Ian Hollister.

Being the only girl who cares to see beyond Ian’s bad boy reputation has its advantages, especially when he’s scaring off the jerks who just want to nail the campus sex-guru. It’s when he’s “protecting” her from the advances she welcomes that she wants to lob him over the head and tell him to butt out. But Ivy feels like she’s the one who’s taken a hit when Ian almost kisses her at a party. She knows she should feel relieved when he pulls away, so why is she disappointed instead?

What’s worse, Ivy’s now getting aroused by Ian’s slightest touch and can’t stop entertaining thoughts of a romantic future. But Ian doesn’t do relationships, and she’s not interested in anything casual. In the end, Ivy decides it’s best to keep her growing feelings a secret and hope they’ll pass. However, when Ian begins hinting at wanting to take things to the next level, she’s forced to decide if a chance at something more is worth risking everything they’ve built.

With their friendship and her heart hanging in the balance, can Ivy follow the advice she and Ian give their listeners - to communicate, be honest, and trust in themselves - or will insecurity, stubbornness, and pride ruin any chance of their relationship getting off the ground?

About The Author:

Jaycee DeLorenzo hails from Tucson, Arizona, on the outskirts of the Saguaro National Park – which she believes to be the most beautiful spread of desert in the world. By day, Jaycee is an English language teacher to elementary students. By night, she’s a wife, mother, writer, cover artist, website designer, and blogger. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, cooking, singing (very poorly), catching up on her favorite T.V. shows, and researching.

The Truths about Dating and Mating is Jaycee's debut novel, and the first in a series centering around students of the fictitious Riordan College.

Find me on the web:

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N | Smashwords

Along with my tour, I’m doing a rafflecopter giveaway!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Blindsided Blog Tour: Christmas Memories

I am thrilled  to the core to be able to host one of my favorite bloggers/authors Kyra Lennon. Her Blindsided Blog Tour STOPS HERE at the Bird's Nest today!! YAY.

There is something about Christmas that makes people start to reminisce. About the year that’s almost over, the events that made us happy or sad, and about Christmases past.

My own memories of past Christmases are strong, and every year, I can’t help but go back over them and remember. One memory that always stands out from when I was a kid is that feeling that the days leading to Christmas seemed to drag on FOREVER. I was buzzing with excitement, but bored out of my mind because I wanted Santa to arrive so I could get my hands on my presents!

One particularly memorable year – I honestly can’t remember how old I was – but my brother allowed me to take his Nintendo to my room so I could play on it. He had Super Mario All Stars, and it was my favourite thing EVER! To take my mind off the endless wait for the big day, I played hours of Mario. And even now, on the few days before Christmas, I STILL want to go to my room and play the game!

I’m older now, and perhaps the excitement should be gone now. Let’s face it, once you get older, there is way more to do to get ready for the celebrations. Presents to be wrapped, cards written and posted, food and drinks to buy, and the total hassle of making sure everything is ready and you haven’t forgotten the gift for Great Auntie June who you only ever see once a year.

The magic stayed. The excitement is still with me, perhaps because I am an overgrown child! :p But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

What are your favourite Christmas memories?

Blindsided Synopsis:After a successful first soccer season in L.A, Jesse Shaw heads to London with his best buddy, Hunter, but his world is turned upside down when a dangerous prank threatens his career and his blossoming relationship with Hunter’s cousin, Isabelle.

Isabelle Mills lives in Notting Hill with her parents and her twin sister, Georgia. When she finds out her cousin is coming to stay, along with his famous soccer player friend, her first instinct is to hibernate until they’ve gone. However, once she meets Jesse, everything changes. He’s everything she ever wanted, but with so many obstacles in their path, can she really risk putting her heart on the line?

Author Bio:
Kyra Lennon was born on the South coast of England, and to this day, still lives by the sea. After years spent working in retail, where she met enough versatile characters to write hundreds of books, she finally took the plunge and quit her day job. Kyra's debut novel, Game On, was released in July 2012. While fiction writing has always been her passion, she also has numerous articles on a variety of topics published on prolific websites.

Buy Links:
Kyra Lennon on Amazon.com
Kyra Lennon on Amazon.co.uk

Find Kyra online

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Hump Day

Never quite liked the term "hump day" because it sounds so perverse, however, that's where we are  today. It's Wednesday and I'm feeling a little bleh. Yep, it's official: I have the winter blues.

Somewhere under that pile of white stuff, is my pool. Sigh.

Every year when it begins to get damp and cold outside, (and I seem to get a bit more stiff and crippled up because of my condition) which certainly doesn't help, I get the blah, blah, blues! I am a sunshine girl. I love the heat and warmth of the sun on  my face and the overall feeling of freedom and fun summer always brings.
All smiles on the Big Island, in Hawaii: Best trip EVER.
There are a couple more reasons I am in a little slump right now. But I'll spare you the details. Suffice it to say, I need to stop this feeling sorry for myself nonsense and grab a hold of my sunny, optimistic disposition, despite the chill in the air.

So, I thought I'd post some pictures today, from happier times, to help bring my spirits up. Since that usually helps. Any of you have any ideas/suggestions of what you do to help bring you out of a slump? I'd love to hear about them. Also, anyone having a wonderful week or have some good news I can celebrate?

This picture was taken in my BFF's backyard in CA. One of my favorites for two reasons: (1) I was getting to spend time with my BFF and her family who I absolutely adore and (2) My sister Adrienne and I were laughing our heads off because my BFF kept saying, "get closer" for the picture, but our boobs were just too big to allow it! LOL
My three crazy babies always make me smile and happy!
Taking Faith to the MET for her 10th B-day b/c she wanted to see the Savage Beauty exhibit, will always be one of my VERY best, happiest memories. 
I was outside Hugo Boss, in Atlantic City one day when I realized: Hey, that model looks familiar! And I freaked out.

Because the picture was of my amazing friend Matt, a completely fabulous person I absolutely adore!
Isn't he precious?

This Halloween picture of  Farrah and her chubby belly, kills me. Love it.

I love football and always have a good time at the Giants games!!

Frankie, jacking around after climbing the volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii

My little kitty always makes me smile :)
When Faith's cooking dinner-everybody wins!!
And last but not least, a little Wolverine goes a LONG way.