If you celebrate the holiday of Easter, I hope you had a wonderful day with friends and family.
We celebrate in our own way, mainly a relaxed day spent together, cooking a special meal, laughing, and generally just being us.
There’s also a tradition I always uphold on Easter weekend. I watch Easter Parade.
When I was growing up, I would spend the summers with my grandparents and one of the things we’d do, especially my grandmother and I, is watch old movies. A lot of Doris Day and a lot of Judy Garland. I loved both of these women and I am still a big fan. Easter Parade has always been one of my favorites. Judy Garland and Fred Astaire were delightful together and oddly enough, it was their only movie together. Kind of sad as both were superb talents as actors, dancers, and singers.
I loved the costuming, the beautiful women in elegant gowns and the men in smart looking suits. You can’t overlook the fact that women had gorgeous figures that didn’t have to slip into the single digits for them to be considered desirable and beautiful. Men were gentlemen and women were ladies. Movies from this era make me smile and I love all the songs. The movie reminds me of my childhood, the good things, the good parts, the dreams I used to have.
Of course my favorite song from the movie is Easter Parade and here’s the clip for it…(you’ll have to forgive the subtitles…lol)
I hope you have some very happy memories and traditions that make you smile… I used to get Easter baskets filled with gifts and candy and I loved them, but these movies are part of me and part of the influence of who I’ve become in my life. Music, and song and gaiety and warmth and comfort and good food. My grandparents were a huge part of my childhood and as well a huge influence in who I’ve become.
Speaking of good food, my kids and I made Marshmallow Reeses Brownies today. I found the recipe online the other day on a blog called BruCrew Life and oh my goodness they are gooey and rich and so amazing. Here’s the recipe…
Spray a 9×13 pan with baking spray and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350* In a large mixing bowl combine the brownie mix, oil, water, and eggs. Beat until just combined. Spread half the brownie batter in the bottom of the prepared pan. Lay the peanut butter eggs on top of the batter. Drop spoonfuls of marshmallow fluff around each egg. Top with the rest of the brownie batter. Spread the batter completely over all the marshmallow fluff swirling slightly. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool completely before cutting into the brownies.
It’s been a good year. It’s been a very good year. A lot of changes, a lot of progress, a lot of learning, a lot of new friendships and relationships begun, a lot of ups and a few downs. All in all though, it’s been a really good year for me.
I had quite a few releases in 2010:
3 with Loose Id (Sugar Rush, Stick Shift, Arrested Holiday)
I got a new website facelift. It still needs some work, but, overall I really love it.
I made money doing something I’ve loved…writing.
I made some new friends, some other friendships became stronger. I even developed a few new girl crushes, too.
I have learned how amazing readers are and how incredible they can make you feel, how motivated, how supportive, and how wonderful they are. I have also learned they can be brutally honest and sometimes that’s not easy or fun, but there’s usually something to take from away from it, even when it’s hurtful and painful.
I’ve learned that I don’t handle bad reviews well and I’m considering a ‘Bad Reviews Day’ on my blog. We writers are always talking up the good reviews, but we hide the bad ones away, hoping no one will notice. Well, I’m done with that. I get enough bad ones that I might as well trot those out, too.
I’ve learned how to help my husband deal with diabetes. I’ve learned to try new foods, new ways of cooking and baking. I’ve lost weight and gone down a size and a half, almost down two sizes. My kids have grown, are both being home schooled this year.
I’ve learned to stand up to people more, not take a lot of shit like I used to. I’m learning to say no more and that’s important and to simply like what I like and be good with that, not trying to impress anyone or see what they can do for me, but rather, see if there are things I can do for them.
I have read a lot as well this year and unlike most, I didn’t keep a list of what and by whom. I did read a lot of M/M, a lot of BDSM, some paranormals, quite a few contemporary M/F.
I’ve worked myself into corners and worked myself out of them. Though not recently. I haven’t written anything. I’ve done some re-evaluating. I’ve done some thinking and contemplating about where I want to go with my writing, what I want to accomplish, what I want to do, if anything at all.
I’ve gone to rock concerts, NASCAR races, football games, Monster Truck shows. I’ve connected with my kids, shared experiences and given them and myself memories to cherish.
A lot has happened and gone on this year of 2010. A lot has changed and evolved. A lot doors have been opened and a few have closed.
I am looking forward to 2011 and all the things it will bring with it.
Thank you to everyone I have met this year, those that have made it amazing, those that have taught me about friendship, about perseverance, about the meaning of friendship, about the pleasures of following dreams. I have laughed, smiled, cried this year. I have found a deeper love of BDSM and the exploration of submission. I have found my love of belts and leather. I have found a love of many other naughty things as well…
I have a thing for Christmas lights. I prefer the multi-colored ones over white ones. There’s something magical about the colors, how they sparkle together, how they glow with difference and beauty. They make me smile and I could stare at them for hours, have stared at them for hours many times.
I have a friend named Sue. We’ve had a few drinks together, laughed until we couldn’t remember why we were laughing. She works with my husband and that’s how Sue and I met, last year at Christmas dinner party.
A few weeks ago, Sue took a leave from work. No one knew why except her boss and he wasn’t talking. It has since been found out that Sue has been diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. It’s a cancer that forms inside the bone marrow. She’s in her mid-late 40’s.
They don’t expect to release her from the hospital until after the first of the year. And from what anyone understands, the long term prognosis isn’t good.
As I consider Christmas, buying gifts, baking goodies, drinking my hot cocoa, looking at Christmas lights, I can’t help but think of her, of my friend that will spend this time in a hospital room, that cannot have visitors save for immediate family, that is going through chemo, is in pain.
For all the things that we go through in our individual lives, for all our own personal struggles, there are those with worse circumstances.
This wish I make now, is for you to tell your friends, your family how much they mean to you. Reach out a help someone, even if it is to say you’re thinking of them. Wave, call, send a card, bake some cookies, give a hug. I am blessed beyond belief with some very dear friends, a family that loves me, great kids, good health, a warm home, food on the table, a job I love.
My friend Sue didn’t know this was coming, that this was going to happen to her, that she would fall victim to this disease. None of us ever know when or if it’ll come and knock on our door. I’ve known too many people, both family and friends, that have passed away from one form of cancer or another. If I can say I hate something, then it is this sickness…
I know this is a hard and heavy blog post to read. One of my publishers sent out an email stating that they would not be sending out Christmas cards this year to authors but instead donating the money that would have been spent on cards and postage and man-hours to charities. I found it to be a wonderful idea. I have done this in the past, I have had it done for me in the past as well, a donation made in my name.
As much as we all have wish lists, and I am no different, we should all leave room on them for giving, for laughter, for friendship, for love, for family, for the things that cannot be measured…