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Betina’s Best First Day

Here’s a nice review on my children’s book, “Batina’s Best First Day.” Thanks to the Redheaded Library Lady for her kind words.

Curly-headed library

I enjoy the occasional children’s book, but I normally stick to YA fiction and Adult fiction.  However, I came across this fun tale at the Texas Library Association’s 2016 conference in Houston, TX.  The delightful author, Denise Ditto, was gracious enough to let me take a copy of Betina’s First Best Day to peruse, and I’m so glad she did!

The story of Betina the tooth collector and her first day on the job will enchant any child intrigued by the tooth fairy.  We get to see behind the scenes as only the most well-brushed teeth are turned into fairy dust, which is what enables the faries to fly.  Will Betina ruin her first day by losing her tooth?  Will the fairy dust machine work?  And will Jolene, the wayward wanna-be collector solve her grudge against Betina and her friends?  Read to find out!

This book is laid out in very manageable small chapters…

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Tidying vs. organizing by Rebecca Nolen

My friend Rebecca posted this on her blog site today.  I think we all could learn a lesson from the book called “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.”  I think I’ll be next.

Hello all, I’ve just completed a makeover of my studio. I’m including some before and after pics below. I’m also reading a book called The LIfe-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, the J…

Source: Tidying vs. organizing

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Pulpwood Queen? What’s That?

If you’ve never heard of the Pulpwood Queen Book Club you must be living under a rock.  I guess that means me because I’d never heard of such a thing until just recently myself.  The Pulpwood Queen Book Club is a world renowned book club founded by Kathy Murphy, an avid book reading beautician.


Kathy Murphy

Her book club journey began in the year 2000 when she decided to start up a little book club out of her beauty salon/bookstore, Beauty and the Book in Jefferson, Texas. The rest is history … a history which you can learn about first hand when Dream Works Entertainment’s movie comes out based on Murphy’s book, “The Pulpwood Queens Tiara-Wearing, Book-Sharing Guide to Life.”

Last weekend, January 15-18, 2015, was the clubs 15th Anniversary Girlfriend Weekend Author Extravaganza. The little town of Nacogdoches, Texas was invaded by more than 300 tiara wearing, eccentric, book reading lovers galore.  And did I mention, I was one of them. What a blast! Here is what I learned …

Girlfriend Weekend is a three day event where, by special invitation only, authors are invited to come and sit on a 45 minute panel and discuss their book – one which was selected during the course of the year by the book club. This goes on all day long for two days. The first day of the event there were 22 authors in the lineup and 14 the second day. Initially, when I read the schedule of events I thought, is that it? Oh my, I might have to excuse myself during the day and shop or something. In other words, it didn’t sound very entertaining but boy was I wrong. I was so completely engaged that I wouldn’t even get up for a potty break in fear I might miss something. Author after author shared their books and stories.


Jan Montandon

I got to talk to many including Pat Montandon, author of Peeing on Hot Coals. I can hardly wait to read that one. Ms.Montandon was an absolute delight.  You know, she once dated Frank Sinatra.  Really, she did.

At the conclusion of the interviews, the author’s books were for sale and the authors were available to sit at the author table for autographs.  All I can say is the entire event was fascinating.  I’m already signed up for next year and can hardly wait!

The master of ceremony was none other than, Kathy Murphy. Her co-host was New York Times Bestselling Author, Jamie Ford. Mr. Ford wrote Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet and Songs of Willow Frost: A Novel.”  Rumor is he’s the next Nicholas Sparks.  Just saying!


Jamie Ford and wife

The last night of the weekend was the “Great Big Ball of Hair Ball” ball where club members and authors wore costumes based on a theme. This year the theme was AROUND THE WORLD WITH BOOKS. Attendees dressed as characters out of their favorite books. I chose to dress as Crown Mistress Molar, a character out of my upcoming book, “Batina, the Tooth Collector Fairy in Best First Day. No one recognized me but that’s okay. I carried around a sign with my name.


Rebecca Nolen dressed as the Wasp from her book, “The Dry”

Fellow friend, author, and attendee Rebecca Nolen dressed as a Wasp, a character out of her book, “The Dry.”

I’m happy to announce we were both pictured in the Daily Sentinel.

The Pulpwood Queens motto is, “where tiaras are mandatory and reading good books is the RULE!”  For those interested, the sole mission and purpose of the organization is to promote authors, books, literacy, reading and helping undiscovered authors get discovered in a big way.    So I guess that’s it in a nutshell.

All I can say is move over Oprah!

Lifetime membership into the club is $25.


HWG Author/Members Carolyn Shield, me, Rebecca Nolen and Fern Brady



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My How Time Passes So Quickly

Well, here it is already November 2014 and nothing new has posted on my site in months so here goes.  It’s time for a 2014 New Year’s Resolution update.  I went to see John Flores, Ell Salon in October to have my hair measured again.  I failed to take a photo but here are the results.  If I shave my hair off I’ll have 10 inches.  I selected Pink Heart Funds as my hair recipient and the minimum length is 12 inches so, based on my 1/2 inch each month hair growth, I have 4 + more months to go.   My 2014 New Year’s Resolution may be my 2015 New Year’s Resolution, as well.

New Year's jar idea

I think I’ll do this too!  Won’t you join me?


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Hair Growth Update

We are already into April and it is way past time to report on my hair growth.  For those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, here’s the deal.  My New Year’s resolution is to grow my hair all year and donate it to Pink Heart Funds.

I have bad news followed by good news followed by bad news.  Let’s talk bad news first and go from there.  Bad news – I’ve gained 6 lbs eating all those sweet potatoes fries which are one of the foods recommended for healthy hair growth.  Boy are they good.

April hair growthGood news –  I’m at 6 inches in the back now.  I was whistling with happiness at my progress knowing that I should be at 10 inches by December when I was stopped in my tracks.  Bad news –  It seems the required length to donate has changed to 12 inches.  Oh my.  It looks like I am going to have to push my completion date into 2015.  Good news – That’s okay with me as long as everyone knows when my hair looks like a hot mess it’s for a reason, so forgive me.  It’s worth it!

I’d like to thank John Flores at Ell Salon for having patience with me and my hair.  He promises to fix me up when the time comes.  Here’s a shout out to John.  Hey John!  Thanks for your help.

Here are the requirements copied off the Pink Heart Funds webpage for anyone interested:

Donations of ponytails are accepted at any time and evaluated based on the following guidelines:
  • At least 12-inches long
  • Can be one length or layered (shortest layer must be at least 12-inches long)
  • Must be clean and dry (damp donations will not be used)
  • Secured by ponytail holder or braid
  • May be colored or permed (not over processed or bleached)
  • Grey is acceptable
  • All ethnicities accepted
  • Placed in a sealed Ziploc style bag
How to Ship Your Ponytail Donation
Secure the dry hair in a tight ponytail with a holder or rubber band at the top and center of the ponytail and cut the ponytail.  Place the ponytail in a sandwich-style plastic bag.  Mail the ponytail in a secured envelope to:
Pink Heart Funds
P.O. Box 1047
Long Beach, MS 39560



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2014 – Happy New Year!

Happy New Year – 2014!

The New Year is finally here.  Over the past few months I’ve been thinking a lot about what I could do in 2014 that would be meaningful.  That means no cheesy resolution to lose weight or get to the gym.   This year I’m going to do something different.

After much thought, I made my decision and here it is … For me, when I hear of friends suffering from a serious illness or battling cancer I want so much to reach out and help.  Send a card or give them a call but sometimes that doesn’t seem like enough.   So this year I’m going to do something to give back.  I’ve decided to grow my hair and donate it to Pink Heart Funds.

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Christmas in Houston

Merry Christmas to all,

Christmas holidays 2013 041 Christmas holidays 2013 121 Christmas holidays 2013 085

The holidays are in full force and once again I am amazed at how many holiday activities are going on in the Houston area.  With only 9 days left, hopefully, your holiday shopping is done and you are now ready for some entertainment.  Below is a list of some events you might find fun for you and your family.

Tuesday, December 17, 7:30 pm – A Christmas Carol – Alley Theatre

Thursday, December 19 8:00 pm – The Tacky Country Christmas Cotillion benefiting the Make a Wish Foundation – Rebels Honky Tonk

Dec 6, 2013 – Dec 22, 2013  – Elf – The Musical – Theatre Under The Stars / Sarofim Hall

November 13 – December 29 2013 – The Great American Trailer Park Christmas Musical – Stages Repertory Theatre

December 27. 2013 3:00 pm – Trans-Siberian Orchestra: The Lost Christmas Eve – Toyota Center

Personally, I’m going to see Elf – The Musical and will check back in and let you know how it was.  I love the movie and can’t wait to see the story on stage.  It’s had great reviews.

If you are not in the mood to make a commitment to attend one of the shows above, just jump in the car and cruise around the neighborhood and see all the beautiful outdoor light displays.   People are truly in the holiday spirit this year.  Memorial City is beautifully decorated as is the Galleria area.  The River Oaks area is always beautiful to see, as well, and don’t forget the Heights.  The official Tour of Lights in the Heights was December 14 so we missed that but the homes will be decorated through the end of the year so if you get a chance, check that area out, too.  This year’s route is Bayland and Woodland Streets.

Enjoy the holiday and get out there and have some fun, and make some memories.

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