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Holidays and Ever Wondered?

I’m so excited – no, I haven’t sold another book. In fact I’ve been receiving a lot of rejections, but I’m not talking about those today. No, I’m not. Hubby came home last night and said, “How would you like to go on holiday in September?”

“September?” I said. “I thought we weren’t going on holiday again until next September.”

He grinned at me and said, “How would you feel about Phuket in Thailand?”

My answer was yes. (of course!) and so long story short, we’ll be jetting off to Singapore and Thailand in September for 11 nights. I’m really excited since we haven’t been to Phuket. We’ve visited Bangkok and also Singapore, but Phuket is new territory.

A few days ago Sandra Cox posted the following called Ever Wonder? It made both hubby and I chuckle, so I thought I’d repost for your enjoyment.

EVER WONDER …

Why the sun lightens our hair, but darkens our skin?
Why women can’t put on mascara with their mouth closed?
Why don’t you ever see the headline ‘Psychic Wins Lottery’?
Why is ‘abbreviated’ such a long word?
Why is it that doctors call what they do ‘practice’?
Why is lemon juice made with artificial flavor, and dishwashing liquid made with real lemons?
Why is the man who invests all your money called a broker?
Why is the time of day with the slowest traffic called rush hour?
Why isn’t there mouse-flavored cat food?
Why didn’t Noah swat those two mosquitoes? –
Why do they sterilize the needle for lethal injections?
You know that indestructible black box that is used on airplanes? Why don’t they make the whole plane out of that stuff?!
Why don’t sheep shrink when it rains?

I wondered recently what Samoan men wear under their lava-lavas. In fact, I’m still wondering because I didn’t like to ask…

What have you wondered recently?

Comfort Foods

I’ve been thinking about food a lot this week, mainly because I’m having a bit of cut back and watching what I eat. I like food. One of my favorite meals is pasta. I love pasta and can eat it for several meals in a row. It’s a real comfort food for me. I’m also a big soup fan. There’s nothing better than a big bowl of soup with a couple of pieces of Vogel’s toast when the weather gets cooler. When it comes to dessert, I’d have to say ice cream, although I’m savvy enough not to buy ice cream these days. It doesn’t stay in my freezer for long!

What are your favorite comfort foods? Does your preference change with the seasons?

Big Feet and Socks

My name is Shelley Munro and I have big feet. Over the years I’ve become used to my big feet–after all, I’m atached to them. I’ve found a great shoe shop that caters for women with big feet. It’s all good, or so you’d think. My problem comes with socks.

My husband keeps stealing my socks. Last year I had lots of socks, but suddenly I have none. My husband has stolen them to wear to work. Once he gets his hands on them, I don’t want them back. If you saw the state of his socks and overalls you’d agree with me!

If I had smaller feet, I could buy pretty pink or lemon socks, ones in lovely pastel colors. I bet hubby wouldn’t steal those. Instead I have to buy socks from the men’s department where I end up with navy blue, white or black socks. These my husband steals. Today I purchased three pairs of socks in shades of green and brown. At least those will stand out in the wash, and I have a hope of getting them back. At the moment hubby grabs every blue and black sock he sees, they land up in his sock drawer and that’s it! I never see them again.

If this new strategy doesn’t work, I’m going to break out my embroidery cottons and sew decorative bands on the top of my socks. We’ll see how hubby likes black socks with hot pink embroidery!

What color socks do you have? Does anyone else have a sock-stealing husband? Does anyone know what happens to the lone socks that go off adventuring in the washing machine or drier, never to be seen again?

Packing

Hubby and I fly out to Western Samoa on Friday. Hubby is packed. Even his golf clubs are packed and ready to travel. I haven’t started. Whenever my husband makes a comment, I tell him I can’t pack until Scotty goes to the kennels. She doesn’t like a change in her routine. Where hubby is concerned, that’s my excuse, and I’m sticking to it.

The truth is I don’t like packing. I always put it off until the last minute.

Which camp do you belong in—the organized packer or the last minute panic packer?

Froggie Went A Courtin’

Look what Mr. Munro found in our garden during the weekend…

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Isn’t he handsome? We don’t live anywhere near a pond and it’s a big mystery as to how he arrived in our garden. He made Mr. Munro start when he jumped from beneath a bag of compost. Hubby thought he might be lonely, so he found him a friend…

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He stayed around for a while before hopping away into the depths of our garden. The only problem is that I have this song inside my head now.

Did you find anything interesting in your garden during the weekend? Did you do anything exciting during the weekend?

A Surprise Present

My husband came home with a surprise present for me last night. There was no occasion – he just turned up with a present. I thought it was chocolate when I started to open it, but it was a Pandora bracelet. I’ve been eyeing the bracelets for months but thought they were too expensive. It’s sterling silver and very pretty. You buy the bracelet and add the charms as the budget or occasion demands.

My husband and I don’t do presents for birthdays or Christmas. Since our birthdays are a month apart we usually buy something we both want or have dinner out. Sometimes he’ll bring me home chocolate or a bottle of wine if he knows I’ve had a bad day. This bracelet was a complete surprise, and I was really touched. Lots of brownie points :grin:

How do you handle presents in your family? Do you have memories of a special present that you really loved or maybe hated?

Fingers, Butter and Choices

Mr. Munro is on the injured list at the moment. He jammed his finger in a shipping container after a fumigation yesterday and is feeling miserable. He has to go for x-rays tomorrow but meanwhile has it strapped and the doctors have given him drugs. I feel so sorry for him but there’s nothing I can do. He didn’t sleep well last night. Hopefully some of the drugs the doctor gave him will help with that tonight.

The Body Shop has a mega sale on body butter. I’m a huge fan of their body butter and have purchased a large supply to last me for the entire year. I use it in lieu of perfume and have, in times of desperation, used it to tame frizzy hair. It works like a charm. Does anyone else like body butter?

I went to the local mall today and saw a billboard sign. The text captured my attention rather than the product it was advertising. I think it was alcohol of some description. Anyway, the text said: would you rather walk in on your parents or have your parents walk in on you?

An interesting dilemma. I know which I’d choose. I’d rather have my parents walk in on me. Some things just sear to the eyeballs, and I reckon this is one of them. I’d rather it wasn’t my retinas imprinted with the scene!! What about you?

A Day at Munro House

I’ve been busy writing, editing, sending off queries and judging my pile of books for the RITAs. It’s unpleasantly hot here in New Zealand at the moment with today being the hottest so far. Scotty is really feeling the heat, too. Poor thing, although it doesn’t affect her appetite. She is still in possession of Dexter’s basket (see my post on The Curious Series of Events to get the scoop). Dexter hasn’t turned up to claim it so that’s good. I don’t think Scotty would be happy to see it disappear like her old basket.

Mr. Munro is still dragging me out of bed at an ungodly hour each morning to go for a walk, and we go for another after dinner. He’s determined to lose weight and is even having beerless days. I know he’s really serious when that happens. I have to say that my clothes feel a tad looser so maybe giving up an hour or so of sleep is a good thing.

We’ve booked a holiday to Samoa and that’s something to look forward to in a few months. Mr. Munro also came home with a very fat travel brochure today so we can plan a holiday for next year. We did intend to go to Nashville and that side of the US while taking in the RWA conference, but our exchange rate has taken a hit. When we went to the US last year the rate was around .78 and it’s sitting at .51 at the moment. Not good news for us or another US trip. Instead we’re looking at exotic places like Namibia, South Africa, Portugal and India. We both love the planning stage of trips and it makes for a very interesting dinner conversation. “What about xy?” one of us will suggest. “Yes, or we could go to zz.” the other will say.
LOL – we might win Lotto too. That would help!

I’m pretty sure a new scavenger hunt starts at The Samhellion today and I’m one of the authors. Check it out at The Samhellion and don’t forget there’s a new free story out each day to celebrate Valentine’s Day.

And finally, I’m guest blogging at We Write Romance. Here’s the link.

What’s happening at your place?

The Curious Series of Events

This is a bit of a story, so grab a coffee and get comfortable.

Mr. Munro went to pick up Scotty from the kennels on Sunday. The kennel assistant came out with Scotty and a basket that didn’t belong to her. Hubby said, “That’s not Scotty’s basket.” But evidently Scotty had slept in that basket the entire time we were away. (Let’s call this event one)

The kennel people ran around looking for Scotty’s tatty basket and couldn’t find it. It is tatty with the stuffing showing through the fabric but she doesn’t like the new ones we purchased for her. She likes the old one. They looked high and low and finally said hubby could take the basket Scotty had been sleeping in. Subsequent investigations i.e. looking at the label says this basket belongs to a dog called Dexter. (Let’s call this event two)

Hubby and Scotty went off to collect a chainsaw from a friend so he could cut down a tree. When he went to load the chainsaw into the car he discovered the wee dog had had an accident of the smelly kind. Hubby assures me he didn’t shout at her, but I don’t really believe him. Scotty is very good but sometimes she can’t move fast enough to reach the great outdoors. In this case she was trapped inside the car. (Let’s call this event three)

Hubby and Scotty arrived at home. Scotty went straight into the tub for a wash and shampoo while I put her new basket (the one that used to belong to Dexter) into the washing machine and cleaned out the car. (Let’s call this event four)

Scotty went outside to dry while hubby prepared for his tree chopping adventure. I went inside to check my email and think about writing, housework and the like. I heard sudden shouting and swearing in the garage and went racing out to investigate. While hubby was washing Scotty in the tub, she knocked the washing machine outlet pipe and it dropped to the ground, unnoticed by hubby. When the washing machine emptied, it emptied out into the garage and we ended up with a flood. (Let’s call this event five)

Hubby and I frantically mopped and wiped up water, shifting stuff in the garage and panicking in case the water seeped through the wall into the house and wet the carpet. (Let’s call this event six)

Now: I’m going to leave you on a traditional hook – Will the Munros save their carpet from becoming wet and moldy? And will Dexter turn up to reclaim his basket?

It struck me while I was mopping frantically and running the weird series of events through my head that this was typical plotting. It’s what writers try to do while plotting a book. They try to make each crisis bigger and more alarming to test the characters. Yep, I’d experienced a lesson in plotting all in the space of an hour. It actually served as a reminder. I need to be a little meaner to my characters in my current Middlemarch book. They needed to suffer just as Mr Munro and I suffered.

Do you think some authors overdo the series of events and torture their characters too much? Do you think that characters aren’t tested enough and we authors let them off too easily? What are your thoughts about plotting?

Why Didn’t Someone Warn Me….

…that a person uses different muscles climbing up and down mountains to when they cycle, walk and run?

OR:

…to take better care of my big toe – the same toe that I injured while ice skating when I was in my teens, the same toe the Goal Attack or Goal Shoot managed to jump on every netball season after that. I’ve given up counting the number of times that toe nail has bruised and dropped off. Another one coming up to add to the number.

I Hurt. :cry: