Arianna's Blog

Come listen to the ramblings and assorted babblings of a crazed mother and newbie author. It might not always be helpful, but it should be amusing.

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Dog

Here is a picture of my lovely dog Cheyenne. She doesn't really have red eyes, I just don't know how to fix them in the picture. She's actually a brown-eyed husky. Believe it or not, she only weighs 45 pounds, most of what you see here is winter fur. In April, her winter coat comes out and rolls like tumble weeds across my floors. It literally looks like it's been snowing in my back yard when I comb her out.

Now, like the rest of the females in my family, Cheyenne is pretty, but not well behaved. You see, she's much too smart for her own good. She knows how to open the back door (the one in the picture) but doesn't know how to CLOSE it. With the high today of 18, that makes for some seriously COLD FREAKING TILES.

I spend most of my day letting her out to run around in the back yard, then running to the kitchen to shut the door after she comes in. Because she's of Siberian descent, she likes to leave the door open and lay on the tile in front of the artic breeze. It makes for quite the interesting day.

God forbid I LOCK the door so she can't come in when she chooses, though. She has a howl that sounds like someone poking her with hot irons. Repeatedly. I've had workers run out of the house thinking someone was being murdered. She rarely barks, but her howl can be heard around the neighborhood. It's very embarrassing.

The reason I'm introducing Cheyenne now is because the new story I have coming out from Samhain in April has a Siberian Husky as one of the characters. This isn't the first time I've introduced one of my pets into one of my books. If anyone read REBEL'S LUST the cat Max was based entirely on my cat Max.

He's 10 years old, fat, lazy, and completely loveable. The girls put him in baby carriages, cribes, and doll clothes and he just gives a weak "merow" for help but doesn't hurt them. He's the closest I'll ever get to having a son, hahaha.

I'll look for a picture of him and post that soon too.

Have a great afternoon!

Monday, February 27, 2006

The scoop

Okay, here's the scoop on what I've been doing for the past two weeks. Between visits to the hospital to see my dad and running the kids all over the state, my husband and I have been painting.

We started off painting our bedroom on my birthday, oh what joy. Once that was finished (the rug will be installed soon, yay!) we went to work on the dining room and the hallway. These were the last three areas of the house that hadn't been painted. In April we'll have been in the house 9 years, so we figured it was time.

Well, I figured it was time. I think Paul could have waited a while longer. Anyway, here are the results!!! It's a little dark because it's just too darn cold here for me to open the door to let the light in, but you get the idea. I still need to pick out the curtains for the dining room, and I'd dearly love to replace the hallway carpeting, but I need to get out of debt first.

Next I want to repaint the living room. Right now it's white with a stencil I hate. I want to actually try some color in the living room too, what a shock! Up to this point, most of the house was off white, I've started to get addicted to colors!!!

I need to get all the inside home improvement stuff taken care of before April, because by then I'll want to start working in the yard. Cross your fingers that spring comes early. If I suggest one more painting project to my husband he may just kill me, hahahahaha

Painting Part 2

Painting Part 1

Sunday, February 26, 2006

So that's what we're supposed to be doing!

According to a friend of mine, having a blog is supposed to be a sort of promo/author thing, not just an avenue for me to ramble on about nothing. Who knew?

I guess I'm supposed to be talking about writerly pursuits and challenges other than surviving winter vacation with my children. I'm supposed to be giving whatever poor slobs find their way to my blog advice about how to write.

Now that would be interesting! If I had any good advice, I'd share it, honestly. I don't know any secrets for writing other than, apply your butt to the chair and fingers to the keyboard and keep at it.

So what else am I supposed to talk about besides my kids and my "I Love Lucy" life?

Oh! I know! Here's something authorly! I got my first freaking review for BEHIND THE ENCHANTE DOOR today. Now if you're going, "and?" let me 'splain. This story was ripped from my head almost totally complete. Usually I figure things out as I go along. This one just popped out from a dream I had. It's a bit different from the other things I've written and I've been a nervous wreck about it. I mean, this story meant a lot to me. What if no one liked it??

I've been DYING for feedback on it from someone who doesn't know me and is looking to spare my feelings. I finally got my first review from JERR and it was a 5!!! Yippee! I feel much better because I don't know the reviewer so she could have panned me without worrying about my feelings. Thank God she didn't!

I'm sure I'll get some bad reviews too, but at least the first one was positive. Whew!

So, does that count as an author type post? Tomorrow I'll talk about the kids, hahaha. If I act too much like an author people are going to want real advice, then I'm up the creek!!

Hope everyone had a great weekend!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Blast from the past

Today I took my daughters roller skating. They're on vacation so I'm trying to spend "quality" time with them so I don't feel guilty jumping for joy when they go back to school. Honestly, if I don't get the chance to write something soon I'm going to pull my hair out!

But I digress. . .

I took my girls to the local rink and couldn't believe it. It is EXACTLY how I remember it from my days as a teen. The smell of the prezels, the tan rental skates, the lockers, everything. I strapped on my skates with my girls and went out on the floor and it all came back to me. Before long I was skating backwards and making turns and everything.

The girls had a blast, once they let go of the wall, and can't wait to go back. My friend and I think we'll go back without them to reclaim our youth once again. Maybe if we get lucky we can do it without permenently hurting something, hahahahaha.

Thanks everyone for your prayers and good thoughts, I'm sure they helped and I really needed them.

Now if I could get the painting finished and the kids back to school, maybe, just maybe I could get back to having a life! What a thought!!!

Take care everyone and thanks so much!

Thursday, February 16, 2006


As some of you know, I teach teenagers. I work in a school that's called "adult ed" but in reality it's for kids who have either dropped out or have been kicked out of high school. They earn a high school diploma, not a GED, and each have their own individualized programs that I help them go through. On any given night I could be helping students learn Algebra, Geometry, English, History, or Science. It's very challenging and I love it. Because students only get credit for work they turn in, it takes a lot of the power struggles out of the usual school dynamic. See, if a student doesn't want to work, they can leave. There's no penalty for leaving early, you just don't progress. We're there if they need us, but it's up to them to do the work.

This can be a hard lesson for some kids to learn.

If I had a nickle for every time one of my students said to me, "Can't you just GIVE me my diploma?" I wouldn't have to teach any more.

Whenever someone asks me that it always gets me thinking, would I ever have asked a teacher that in school? Was I ever that immature.

The answer is yes and no. Yes, I was very immature well into college, but no, I never would have asked that of a teacher. I don't know if it's the way some people are made or how they're raised, or what someone has told them, but I'm sure you've all met people who feel the world owes them something. Whether it's a high school diploma, a job, a car, a house, or more, they feel that someone should just hand these things over instead of working for them.

In their minds, the world is against them, it's always someone else's fault that they don't have more money, more friends, a better car etc. When they see someone who has these things, their response is jealousy. How come THOSE people got A, B, and C while they are stuck in their dead end lives?

I'll tell you why.

At some point in all our lives we get dumped on. We make mistakes. Something bad happens to us that isn't our fault. That's life, sorry. There are no money back guarantees if things don't turn out like you planned. The difference between people who expect life to give them something and the other people is maturity.

It took me a long time to grow up, but I think the defining moment for me was when I had to own up to my mistakes and take responsibility for them. I had to say, I was wrong and I'd like to fix it. For some people that may be easy, for me it was a big hurdle to overcome. I hated admitting I was wrong. I still don't like it all that much, but I've realized it takes nothing away from me to admit that I'm human with human faults and failings.

By freeing myself from unreasonable expectations I was able to appreciate the blessings God has given me--and there are many--and accept bad things with a little more grace under pressure. At least I hope it has.

Am I completely mature? Not by a long shot, but I'm at a point in my life where I'm willing to work hard for what I want and not expect anyone to hand my life, career, happiness to me on a silver platter.

Now if someone in NY wants to hand me a three book contract, I'll take that on a paper plate. . . hahahahaha

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day!!!

Wishing you all the happiest of "Hart" days this year!

May the love you feel today grow stronger through the year!


Monday, February 13, 2006

Birthday Blizzard

I had pictures of the blizzard that tore through here yesterday, but for some reason, they won't upload. I'll try again later, I promise. You have to see this to believe it.

We haven't had much snow in 2006, until of course my birthday. You see, having a birthday in February in New England is a dangerous thing. Over the course of my 30 something years, I've had several parties called off because of snow. For some reason, we could be having the mildest of winters, but if it's my birthday BAMM! The white stuff is a-falling.

Actually, the snow didn't affect my birthday celebrating too much. My big plans involved, painting. Oh yay. But, I did manage to get my entire bedroom painted!!! Yayayayayayayaya!
We still have to finish painting the trim, but I no longer have to wake up to pink walls every morning. Happy Birthday to me!

Now, if you think I'm being a little odd, you need to understand that we've lived in the house almost 9 years. Every room has been decorated either once or twice, but not our bedroom. For some reason we're always last on the list. Finally we bit the bullet and started the painting project, and actually finished most of it in one weekend. Will miracles never cease!

Now we just have to get rid of the pink rug and the total transformation of our house will be done! Yay!

I'll try to put up pictures as soon as Blogger lets me!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

I'm sooo not crafty!

Oh boy. I tried it again. As many of you know, I'm not exactly the most crafty woman to ever own a glue gun. The last time I used the sewing machine I broke the bobbin and haven't used it in almost six months.

Well, I decided to bite the bullet and get a new bobbin and see if I could use the sewing machine without sewing my fingers together. It took trips to three different stores before I got the right bobbin, but I was in business. It only took four tries to get the bobbin wound correctly, wo hoo! Now we're cooking with gas!

Sort of.

See, here's what happened. Right after Halloween I went to IParty and hit their half off aisle.I wanted to get a costume for the Ellora's Cave party at RT in May. I figured it would be much cheaper to buy the costume right after Halloween then have to order one on line later in the year. I picked up this little naughty nurse costume for like 6 bucks. Just in my budget, thank you kindly.

Wellllll what I hadn't counted on was exactly HOW naughty it was. When I tried the dress on, at first I thought there was a mistake and they only packed a shirt into the package. But no, that was the entire costume. I put it on and it was really cute, the only problem was, the bottom came to about an inch below my butt cheeks. If I bent over, the world would know exactly what color underwear I had on.

Now, I may get a little crazy at conferences, but I've never been much into exhibitionism. In fact, I don't really have the body to be mooning anyone. So in a panic I asked some of my friends what to do. The costume is really cute and I have some props to go with it from my daughters' medical kits so it would work out really well. I didn't want to ditch the costume, but I also didn't want to blind anyone because they got a glimpse of my glearingly white ass.

I got many suggestions, some of them more viable than others. What I decided to do was buy a pair of boy shorts to go under the dress. Since those would inevitably get seen at some point during the night, I bought red tape to make little red crosses to stick on each cheek.

Well, that looked cute, but it was still kind of short, so I bought some lace trim to put on the bottom of the dress, which is why I had to fix the sewing machine. I managed to sew the trim to the hem of the outfit, without maiming myself, and I successfully added an extra two inches to the dress! Yay!

It's still shorter than I would normally wear, but with the trim and the shorts on underneath, at least I won't get arrested for indecent exposure!

Now, if I can just lose 15 more pounds so I can fit into the costume and still breathe, life will be good!

Any of my buds have outfits ready for RT? Ideas for them?

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Shiny Things

My friend Kathy Love once said she thought she was a sea gull in a former life because she is instantly attracted to anything that glitters. I totally agree. I have lots of sparkly, shiny, glittery hair things, clothes, makeup, and knick-knacks. You can take the littlest, most boring rock and cover it with some glue and glitter and I'll love it.

I guess it's a good thing I have all girls because we go through A LOT of glitter-glue, sparkles, and sequins. I wonder if it's just a girl thing or if it's just a MY girl thing? If the store Claires is anything to go by, I'm going to assume most girls like things that sparkle and shine.

Maybe I was a Vegas showgirl in a former life?

What about you? Does glitter catch your eye or could you care less?? And why?

Friday, February 03, 2006

Wonder Woman, eat your heart out!

Remember how Wonder Woman had the invisible jet that she used to fly to the rescue in? When she was in this enormous jet no one could see her. Well I can beat that.

For some reason people can not see my big-ass SUV lately and have been pulling out in front of me all over the place. It's not like a drive a tiny little Honda or anything. I have a Dodge Durango with mulitiple stickers on it. I don't exactly BLEND with my surroundings.

Lately it seems like no one can see me. I've had city buses pull out in front of me, senior citizen vans, and public works vehicles cut me off and a motorcycle practically run into my passenger side door.

What the heck is going on???

I'll admit I'm not the best driver, but in this case I wasn't pulling out into traffic or anything, I was just DRIVING DOWN THE STREET! I was even doing the speed limit, if you can believe that! You would think if you were on a motorcycle you wouldn't want to try to cut off a big-ass SUV, right?

The only explination I can come up with is that I must now have the Invisible SUV and no one can see me. I wonder if that means I can get through the toll boths for free. . .

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Before I begin whining, let me just say a big THANK YOU to everyone who wished me well on my trip and welcomed me home. It's great to go away, but it's even nicer to come home knowing people were thinking about you!

Okay, now on to my whining, feel free to leave now and just enjoy my heartfelt thanks above.

You know I love to write. I have stories in my head just waiting to go onto my computer. I have characters pounding on my brain day and night. I get seriously jazzed by telling stories.

But learning the craft of writing is HARDDDDDDDD!!!!
I can tell a story, oh boy can I ever. I love stories, but improving my writing is a lot of work. I really want to be a better writer, honestly I do. Some days I really enjoy the challenge of pushing myself and my abilities.

Today ain't one of them.

Sometimes the amount of work ahead of me looks so daunting I just want to curl up in the fetal position and pull the blankets over my head. I know if I don't keep pushing myself I'll never improve. I know I have to improve if I don't want to kick myself for the rest of my life. It doesn't mean I have to like it today though.

Okay, whine is over. I'm going to do more laundry. . .

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

I'm home!

Hey Everyone!
I'm home! I managed to get back into CT on Monday at 1 am, and still get the girls ready for school by 8. I've done about 10 loads of laundry, unpacked, gone through a million emails, sorted through a bunch of junk mail, and read about a thousand stories to my girls to relieve some of my guilt for going away without them.

We had a fantastic time visiting the islands and seeing all the sights. The cruise ship was incredible, it really was like a floating city. The food was amazing, and the shopping! Man, if I had money I'd come home with sparkles everywhere!

I'm still trying to figure out how a one week vacation takes so long to prepare for and recover from. . .

When I get the pictures downloaded, I'll post some of them here. We took so many it's going to take me a while to figure out what is what but I'll do my best.

Now, I need to go back and do some more laundry, sigh.
Have a great day!