Happy 4th and 3 days late

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TJ

Happy 4th of July to my American friends.

I’m overdue to have a baby, as usual. When telling the kids how late they each were, my youngest said of the oldest, “She was a little overdone, but Read the rest of this entry

Okay, I’ll do it

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I was nominated for a Liebster award from facetsofamuse. I don’t do awards, so that means I don’t have to obey the rules of acceptance! I’ll just answer Julie’s questions for kicks.

Do you have a pet? If so, what is it?

We have a Syrian long-haired hamster originally named Rapunzel, now called either Punzi or Punz, for short. She should’ve been named Houdini. She’s great at chewing her way out for night-time prison breaks which general scare the heck out of us when we hear her scratching at the door in the middle of the night. It’s a good thing she’s so cute.

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Favorite TV show?

Psych–totally. If you haven’t seen it, you need to remedy that. Like right now. Okay, no wait. Finish reading, liking, and commenting on this post. Then go watch an episode of Psych. There’s a movie coming in December too!

psych

What is one of your pet peeves?

Inconsiderateness. Care about others besides just yourself, people! (And get your shopping cart out of my way.)

Do you have a favorite author? Who and which of their books is your favorite? Read the rest of this entry

Fun with homeschooling

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I was reading off spelling words to my daughter and asked, “What was the last word I gave you?”

She said, “You gave me grief.”

True story.

Here’s an oldy, but a goody.

With another week of phonics looming, I grabbed the pile of my daughter’s first grade sight words. Here is the pile: On the left is what we’ve done so far. On the right is what we have left to do.

z 006

As I picked up the smaller stack to look for next week’s words, these were the three words on top of the pile: Read the rest of this entry

Action! (TV Debut part 2)

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nose powder

Can this count as action? Since I wasn’t able to take pictures of the actual filming, for obvious reasons, here’s an “action” shot of me getting my nose powdered by the floor manager. He doesn’t look like the type to apply make-up, does he? He gave the host the wrap-up sign and ran a camera, or was it just the teleprompter? I also saw him washing our mugs later. A versatile guy! And a total sweetheart. His accent was as Southern as they come. I commented that he must be local. He said, “I was born six miles from here,” in his fantastic drawl.

It was fun watching the teleprompter scroll while the host read from it and the operator  sped it up or slowed it down according to her pace. Neat to see one in action. I also walked by the sound room. I didn’t take a picture because I was sure the flash would bounce off the glass, but it was accurate to all sound rooms you’ve seen in the movies. Also, being back stage was a hoot: roaming through the wooden sets on wheels, ready to take to the studio when their program time came. Wild!

The floor manager gave us the low-down. It would be casual, just sitting and having a conversation, he said. Through my moderated hyperventilating I asked how much editing they do. He said, “We don’t really, not unless there’s a major flub.” “So, I can’t just look at you and say, ‘Can we edit that part out?'” “No,” he said. Bummer.

So we sat on yellow couches and were filmed talking about 101 Tips for a Happier Marriage and 101 Tips for Marrying the Right Person. The baby in my belly was introduced to the world by the host. “Hi, Joseph,” she said and actually waved to him. (The poor kid’s been on TV before he’s even been born. No pressure.) It will be fun, and frightening, to watch the shows when they air sometime in the fall. We did our quick wardrobe changes between programs and said stuff on the next episode like, “So when we were talking yesterday…” What a riot.

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Here I am getting mic’d up, as they say, by a young man who was surprisingly comfortable handling women’s clothing. For each shoot he had to drop the mic down the back of the host’s dress. I saw him hold it in his hands for a minute beforehand to warm it up. What a sweetie! He was very good at what he does, making sure the cord wasn’t showing, etc.

At the end of each program, the floor manager announced, “And we’re clear.” I saw the credits scroll on the tv with the closing song playing over a backdrop. But after one of the episodes, he didn’t say “We’re clear.” I was about to pull off my microphone but looked up to see our faces still on the screen. “We’re still on,” I muttered. The three of us looked at each other. “What should we do?” I said. “I know, let’s pretend like someone said something funny.” And the host and I did an arms-in-the-air fake laugh that will, no doubt, look exactly like people doing fake laughs when they know they’re still being filmed. I’m eager to see how that turns out! Ha!

When the final program was over, we rushed to our guest house to pack up and be ready for our ride back to the airport. I was sad we ran out before saying a proper goodbye to our host. Turns out, she met us at the van. She said her crew enjoyed the program and thought we were funny. Then she said it was a big deal for them to say anything because they’re so jaded from seeing so many of these day in and day out. They normally don’t comment at all. That was the best compliment.

When my colleague left me in the Houston airport, I was jealous that she’d be home soon, but I still had about five hours before I’d be back in my own bed, around midnight. That’s when the fatigue finally hit, but, despite that and other discomforts on the way home, I knew they were hardly worth mentioning since there’d been more than enough blessings to make up for it. And I had so much fun. It was a great experience. Maybe next time (if there’s ever a next time) I won’t be so nervous!

P.S. Since I’m clearly such an exciting person, you can’t get enough of me, I’m trying to get better about marketing, and if you’re on Facebook, please like my parenting is funny page. I would appreciate it! 🙂

Lights, camera…

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Here’s some of them. Thank goodness none came loose! And that I didn’t consider that possibility until after the fact!

Although I was, on the whole, very satisfied with this trip, it wasn’t without its slight hiccups, starting with arriving at the airport around 9:30 at night and having NO driver waiting to pick us up. Also, culture shock: stepping out of the airport and being enveloped by second-hand smoke. It was unavoidable, with still smoldering cigarettes in ash trays every several feet. I’ve taken for granted CA’s smoking laws. And me being pregnant. But aside from that, my colleague got on her phone and found our driver who arrived about 20 minutes later while the airport kept thinning out more and more, leaving us the last poor schleps waiting to be picked up. At least the temperature was fine.

When our driver arrived and opened the back of the van, I rolled my suitcase up and hefted it into the trunk, not seeing him make an immediate move to do so. Then my co-author rolled hers up to his feet and stepped back to let him take care of it. I was like, “Oh, I guess that’s what experienced travelers do–let the driver do the heavy lifting. I’m a total newbie.” I was hoping there’d be a man with a cap and uniform of some sort waiting in the terminal holding a sign with my last name on it–How cool would that be?! I would’ve totally gotten a picture with him, but no. Maybe next time. 🙂 Read the rest of this entry

New book by Jacqui Murray: Twenty-four Days

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Helping out a blog buddy by advertising her book. Read all about it below and consider supporting her by grabbing yourself a copy!

The story of Twenty-four days:

A former SEAL, a brilliant scientist, a love-besotted nerd, and a quirky AI have twenty-four days to stop a terrorist attack. The problems: They don’t know what it is, where it is, or who’s involved.

I always like a good book about AI.  What is AI?  Just happen to have an answer: Read the rest of this entry