Sunday, December 13, 2009
Hope to see you there!
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of Courting the Doctor's Daughter.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
I made so many I had enough to decorate a small tree in my kitchen. Here's a close up. They are a bit weird but they make me smile.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
I call this my Victorian tree because it's loaded with ornaments of every color and style. My mother decorated the blue and silver ornament in the close up photo, just one of the many she made that are now hanging on our tree. I remember the joy she had crafting them and the beauty of her trees. She's gone now so each one holds a special place in my heart. The sand-filled ornament is a souvenir from an anniversary trip to Bermuda. The sand really is pink there. :-) If you look carefully, you'll see the holy family in the glass ornament purchased the year we had our first child. The little red Chinese lantern is a Shiny Brite, part of my collection. On the left is a sideways glimpse of the Mickey Mouse ornament from a trip to Disney World with our grandkids. The entire tree is hung with precious memories.
Monday, November 30, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Hope to see you there!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Thursday, October 22, 2009
A few years ago our family headed out on a crisp, sunny day in October for our annual visit to a pumpkin patch. We’d selected a new patch that we’d heard about from friends who promised it full of great big pumpkins. When we arrived, an attendant directed us where to park in the sea of vehicles in the open field. We bumped along the uneven ground, parked, gathered children, strollers and diaper bags—everything we might need for even a brief outing.
As it turned out, this wasn’t any ordinary pumpkin patch. There were activities galore with a giant jack-o-lantern moonwalk, a maze made of bales of straw, plaster pumpkins to paint, playground equipment to crawl over, face painting and the best of all, kettle caramel corn. We bought a huge bag and stuffed handfuls into our mouths, letting kernels drop to the ground, leaving a path behind us that would compete with Hansel and Gretel's.
Now we were ready to head out to the patch the highlight of our visit—choosing pumpkins to bring home for Halloween carving. We walked out to the dirt lane where families had cued up for the next ride out to the patch. We didn’t have long to wait before we heard the chugging of a bright green tractor, a John Deere, turning up the path and hauling a straw laden cart. Everyone, adults and children alike, perked up, smiling and chattering with excitement, as if we were heading out on a world-class tour.
Soon we were nestled in the bed of straw, bumping along the rutted dirt road that led to the patch. Frightened by the noise of the tractor, our one-year-old granddaughter clung to her mother, wailing. Our grandsons, four, and two, crawled around in the straw as far as their parents’ outstretched legs allowed, oblivious to Lauren’s howls and the old John Deere putting along in front of us, triggering memories in my farm-reared husband. We passed an Alyce Chalmer eliciting more tractor stories from my husband, on its way back with another load of pumpkin toting children and parents. We all waved like old friends.
The patch was in sight now. I saw large pumpkins dotting the field. “That one would make a good jack-o-lantern,” I told my grandsons. “Or that one.” But they were more interested in the tractor than in the grand specimens I’d spotted.
When we arrived at our destination, the boys shrieked at the sight of what appeared to be an endless field of orange and gold. We helped the three grandchildren down from the flatbed trailer and watched them scatter across the field in search of the perfect pumpkin. We trailed along behind, watching them dart here and there, enjoying their energy and enthusiasm. Lauren had forgotten her fright and toddled along, holding her mother’s hand.
Four-year-old Tyler darted from pumpkin to pumpkin, checking out a good portion of the huge field in his quest, while his sister plopped down to play in the dirt. Two-year-old Drew, his eyes on his target, not on his feet, stumbled and lurched over the bumpy ground and dying vines until he reached a tall, skinny specimen. Its flesh was more apricot than orange. It had a missing stem and a lopsided base. Anyone could tell at a glance that this pumpkin was not a good candidate for a jack-‘o-lantern.
Anyone, that is, except Drew. He dropped to his knees, wrapped his arms around that pumpkin and claimed it as his. All our efforts to dissuade him with larger, rounder, deeper colored orange pumpkins didn’t sway him one bit. We went so far as to show him that his pumpkin would topple over unless it was propped, but he only smiled and said, “Mine!”
Standing there in the patch on such a perfect fall day proclaiming the artistry of our Maker, I realized Drew’s pumpkin was a lesson from God, one of those insightful times I’ve come to cherish. This was how God sees you and me. As His. How thankful I am God, like Drew, does not love us according to our shape, or the color of our skin--or even if we need bolstering to keep our lives on an even keel. He knows us inside and out, and no matter how flawed or inadequate we might be, He loves us just as we are. And I knew why. Because he formed us; died for us. It was that simple and that complex.
His mommy took Drew’s picture beside his pumpkin and his daddy ruffled his blond curls, then with a smile as wide as the great outdoors, Drew trotted along between his parents as the three of them made their way out to the road, carrying his pumpkin. Soon Tyler and Lauren had made their selections and there were smiles and shouts as we gathered at a bale of straw for family pictures with the children’s pumpkins.
In the distance I heard the tractor returning to pick us up. I knew back at the starting point there was a scale to weigh the pumpkins and determine their cost. No matter the shape, uniformity or color all the pumpkins would be valued the same. Again as our Heavenly Father values us.
“See my pumpkin, Gramma!” Drew shouted.
“Yes, I do.”
And I did. This time through his eyes. With the unconditional love of a child.
Sunday, October 18, 2009
At the spot where we'd seen the eagle was a opposum. I didn't realize eagles ate dead creatures. This opposum wasn't playing dead.
We drove on past, then returned, hoping to get an even closer look. As we approached, the eagle veered and flew off. Then we spotted two large birds in the distant trees, easy to see from that distance. We didn't see any sign of a nest so I suspect they were out cruising and stopped for dinner.
I'd never seen an eagle up close before. It's a very impressive bird. A friend captured this eagle on film near his home in Florida.
Monday, October 5, 2009
Read the daily posts giving tips for writing fast. Here's the schedule:
Monday: BIAW Day 1, Camy Tang presents, Right Brain, Left Brain.
Tuesday: BIAW Day 2, Cheryl Wyatt presents, Productivity. How to get the editor off your shoulder to spit out the first draft. Cheryl will also be giving away a copy of Noah Lukeman's, The First Five Pages.
Wednesday: BIAW Day 3, Glynna Kaye presents, Writing, the Day Job and You. Glynna will also be giving away of Victoria Schmidt's Book in a Month.
Thursday: BIAW Day 4, Myra Johnson presents, Your face is familiar, but . . . Join Myra as she expands her novel planning Excel workbook into the area of characters. You learn how to keep track of character details and descriptions. She'll also be giving away of her current release from Abingdon Press, One Imperfect Christmas.
Friday: BIAW Day 5, Mary Connealy presents, Pedal to the Metal-or-Slow and Steady Wins the Race.
Saturday: BIAW Day 6, Ruth Logan Herne presents, Persistence: Tapping Your Inner Moabite Princess.
Sunday: BIAW Optional Day 7 and reporting day.
Monday: BIAW Conclusion and reporting day. Take the survey. Tina Russo presents Plan B.
Even if you're not ready for BIAW, these tips are great for productivity.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
before dinner at the Award Ceremony dinner.
The highlights were a walk around beautiful Bear Lake with a light dusting of snow falling--if you use your imagination you'll see the flurries--and watching the bull elk posture and bugle to impress the cows and keep away other bulls. The golf course in Estes Park was also an elk hangout. I'm glad I didn't have to play though that herd.
It was a great trip, but it's good to be home on this sunny Sunday.
Thursday, August 27, 2009
Thanks for your interest in my books!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Friday, August 7, 2009
As part of the fun during the two-day celebration of Harlequin's 60th Anniversary at Don's Books in Kokomo, IN, I'm signing Courting Miss Adelaide and Courting the Doctor's Daughter from 11:30-2:00, along with Blythe Gifford, Jade Lee, Dana Corbit, Denise Lynn and Lori Foster. Hope you can stop by!
Monday, August 3, 2009
Friday, July 31, 2009
Thanks to everyone for entering. If I don't hear from Tammy, I'll draw another name.
Thursday, July 30, 2009
Hi there! This is Camy Tang, and I'm thrilled that Janet is letting me guest blog today!
I wanted to talk about something in my latest novel, Deadly Intent, that I think a lot of folks will relate to—parental pressures.
I have to admit that contrary to stereotypes, my Japanese American parents didn't pressure me about grades in my youth, nor did they nag me about getting married.
On the other hand, my husband's Chinese American family constantly harped on hubby's single state before he met me and brought me home to meet the fam. When we had just started dating, they'd ask us when we intended to get married, right in front of a huge room of people!
I am almost positive that a majority of you guys are cringing because you've had something similar happen to you. Am I right?
Even if you're Russian or Irish or Norwegian or Italian or whatever ethnicity, all families are alike. There are always a few people who think that their opinions, if voiced strongly enough and/or often enough, will sway you into doing what they want.
In Deadly Intent, my heroine's father has had a stroke. He's the owner of a very successful day spa in Sonoma, California, which caters to some very rich, elite clientele.
His oldest daughter, Rachel, is the spa's resident dermatologist researcher, who creates the unique skin care products that draw their clients to the spa. Rachel, obviously, is too valuable in her current role to take over the spa if something happens to her father.
His youngest daughter, Monica, has been a nurse in a San Francisco hospital for several years, and she and her father have always butted heads. While he admires Monica's strength of character, her contrariness makes her a bad candidate, in his mind, for taking over his beloved spa.
So he settles on his middle daughter, Naomi, who is the head massage therapist at the spa. He pressures Naomi to take over as acting manager while he recovers from his stroke, and he's grooming her to take over the spa eventually when he decides to retire.
Naomi, however, likes giving massages, not running the spa. She's always been a good daughter, and so she goes along with her father's wishes, but beneath the surface is a discontent with the direction her life is taking.
Then, one of her clients dies in her massage room. Talk about bad publicity for the spa! Her dad is not pleased, to say the least, even though he knows it's not Naomi's fault.
I hope you all read Deadly Intent to find out what happens—not just about the dead body, but also about Naomi's relationship with her father and how her life takes another turn when her crush, Devon Knightley, shows up at the spa and is a second suspect.
Thanks for having me here today, Janet!
SCENE OF THE CRIME
The Grant family’s exclusive Sonoma spa is a place for rest and relaxation—not murder! Then Naomi Grant finds her client Jessica Ortiz bleeding to death in her massage room, and everything falls apart. The salon’s reputation is at stake...and so is Naomi’s freedom when she discovers that she is one of the main suspects! Her only solace is found with the other suspect—Dr. Devon Knightley, the victim’s ex-husband. But Devon is hiding secrets of his own. When they come to light, where can Naomi turn...and whom can she trust?
Camy Tang writes romance with a kick of wasabi. She used to be a biologist, but now she is a staff worker for her church youth group and leads a worship team for Sunday service. She also runs the Story Sensei fiction critique service. On her blog, she gives away Christian novels every week, and she ponders frivolous things like dumb dogs (namely, hers), coffee-geek husbands (no resemblance to her own...), the writing journey, Asiana, and anything else that comes to mind. Visit her website at http://www.camytang.com for a huge website contest going on right now, giving away fourteen boxes of books and 24 copies of her latest release, DEADLY INTENT.
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
I had a wonderful time signing copies of my second book, Courting the Doctor's Daughter a few weeks back. I want to share some photos.
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Janet, it’s great to be on your blog today!
MT: Why do I write? Well, in the beginning, I guess I did it because I thought it would be fun to try. So I waited until I got my first computer and jumped right in. Then the more serious I became about it (as I started to write for publication), I found that writing was harder work than I ever imagined. The rejections were difficult, too. But the more I wrote and learned and re-wrote, the more I grew to love what I was doing—even though it can truly be hard work! It’s very rewarding, especially once you make that first sale and get your first reader letters. Nothing compares to those wonderful reader letters!
JD: Aren't Steeple Hill readers the best? If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing with your free time?
MT: Probably still teaching. And I would also want to do something creative—maybe making jewelry like I used to do for fun. I would love to paint, too, but I didn’t get the artistic gene my dad gave to my sister. :)
JD: What are you working on right now?
MT: I’m working on a new proposal for Steeple Hill. It’s so exciting to be working on something new! And I just love this story idea. I wrote the gist of the idea in my “ideas” file in 2006. :)
JD: Tell us about His Forever Love, the book you have out right now.
MT: This was a story I loved so much! I just love the hero, Bill. Here’s the back cover copy:
JD: What themes do you like to write about?
MT: I think I’m not alone in that I seem to have my own themes that keep popping up over and over. Maybe it’s based on life experiences. But whatever the reason, I find I tend to write stories about opposites attracting, about wanting to be loved for who we really are, and reunion stories. And it always seems like my stories have some sort of secret in them. But no, I don’t have any juicy secrets in real life! :)
JD: How has your view of romance changed over the years?
MT: Interesting question! If you’re talking about real-life romance (not in books), I guess I’d have to say I’m a little more realistic after nearly 23 years of marriage. Romance is hard work! LOL It takes effort, and yes, even planning. It doesn’t just seem to happen like it did when we were students and dating. Or like it does in any new relationship. Things like bills and jobs and children make it a little more difficult to keep the flame burning. But it’s something worth working for! :)
Great questions, Janet! Thanks so much for having me today.
Thanks for coming, Missy, and sharing a look at you and His Forever Love with us today.
Readers leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of His Forever Love.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
Monday, June 1, 2009
I had a wonderful time at the "Coming Out" party that Val and Gene hosted for the May release of Courting the Doctor's Daughter. I thought you might like seeing some of the fun that evening. Val, Lynn and I anticipate all that wonderful food!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
My cousin Cathy sent me a picture of her with my book in a Wal-Mart store. Love it! Thanks, Cathy. Hope you enjoy Courting the Doctor's Daughter.
So many of you have passed along bookmarks to friends and family, even sticking them in my books on store shelves. I'm waving at Judie Oberheuser in Texas for all the efforts she's made to publicize my books. And to Pam in AZ. Whether you passed out one bookmark or a 100, I'm grateful.
If you enjoy my books, tell others. That's the best way to create buzz.
God has blessed me with wonderful people in my life, but one particular person has made the biggest impact on my writing. Thanks to Shirley Jump, my dear friend, a wonderful writer and critique partner who's taught me so much about craft.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Katherine and Patricia are winners at Petticoats and Pistols.
Tonya is the winner at Running with Quills.
Congratulations to the winners. Thanks everyone for entering.
Saturday, May 9, 2009
I'm posting at Seekerville on Monday. www.seekerville.blogspot.com and at Running with Quills. www.runningwithquills.com
Hope to see you there.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Now that the book's turned in, I'll try to catch up with everything from e-mails to sleep. The last week the only thing I didn't skip was eating. LOL With a broken toe I won't be able to get the exercise I need to offset all that sitting and eating. My foot is swollen. The only shoes I can wear are sandals with Velcro straps. Not a great fashion statement, but at least this didn't happen in winter. There's always a way to find the positive.
Monday, April 27, 2009