Monday, September 29, 2008

You have FEMA's number on your speed dialer.

You have more than 300 'C' and 'D' batteries in your kitchen drawer.

Your pantry contains more than 20 cans of Spaghetti Os.

You are thinking of repainting your house to match the plywood covering your windows.

It seems spooky that the power's out but the electric toothbrush still works.

When describing your house to a prospective buyer, you say it has three bedrooms, two baths and one safe hallway.

You've been days without power, but you still cannot train yourself not to flip on light switches when entering a room.

Your SSN isn't a secret, it's written in Sharpie on your arms.

You are on a first-name basis with the cashier at Home Depot.

The road leading to your house has been declared a No-Wake Zone.

You decide that your patio furniture looks better on the bottom of the pool.

You own more than three large coolers.

You can wish that other people get hit by a hurricane and not feel the least bit guilty about it.

Three months ago you couldn't hang a shower curtain; today you can assemble a portable generator by candlelight.

You catch a 13-pound redfish - in your driveway.

You can recite from memory whole portions of your homeowner's insurance policy.

You consider a 'vacation' to stunning Tupelo , Mississippi .

At cocktail parties, women are attracted to the guy with the biggest chainsaw. (yeah, baby!)

You can rattle off the names of three or more meteorologists who work at the Weather Channel.

Someone comes to your door to tell you they found your roof.

Ice is a valid topic of conversation.

Your 'drive-thru' meal consists of MRE's and bottled water.

You spend more time on your roof then in your living room.

You've been laughed at over the phone by a roofer, fence builder or a tree worker.

A battery powered TV is considered a home entertainment center.

Your child's first words are 'hunker down' and you didn't go to Ole Miss!

Having a tree in your living room does not necessarily mean it's Christmas.

Toilet Paper is elevated to "coin of the realm" at the shelters.

You know the difference between the'good side' of a storm and the 'bad side.'

Your kids start school in August and finish in July.

You go to work early and stay late just to enjoy the air conditioning.

The number one way you can tell if you're from the Gulf Coast?? You can survive a devestating hurricane, lose precious possessions deep with memories and weep with neighbors over the loss of their homes, but when it's all said and done, you still have a sense of humor!

Friday, September 26, 2008

How my heart has broken for friends and neighbors who have lost everything due to this devestating storm. The pictures don't do justice. Still, for those unclear as to the destruction left in the wake of Ike, I'd like to post a few. I don't know who took the pictures, to give them due, but somehow, I feel the they need to come out.

Hurricane Ike

Monday, September 22, 2008


1. My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE .

'If you're going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.'

2. My mother taught me RELIGION.

'You better pray that will come out of the carpet.'

3. My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL .

'If you don't straighten up, I' m going to knock you into the middle of next week!'

4. My mother taught me LOGIC.

' Because I said so, that's why.'

5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC .

'If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you're not going to the store with me.'

6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT.

'Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident.'

7. My mother taught me IRONY

'Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about.'

8. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.

'Shut your mouth and eat your supper.'

9. My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM .

'Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!'

10. My mother taught me about STAMINA. '

You'll sit there until all that spinach is gone.'

11. My mother taught me about WEATHER.

'This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it.'

12. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.

'If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate!'

13. My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE .

'I brought you into this world, and I can take you out.'

14. My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.

'Stop acting like your father!'

15. My mother taught me about ENVY.

'There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do.'

16. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.

'Just wait until we get home.'

17. My mother taught me about RECEIVING .

'You are going to get it when you get home!'

18. My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.

'If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to freeze that way.'

19. My mother taught me ESP.

'Put your sweater on; don't you think I know when you are cold?'

20. My mother taught me HUMOR.

'When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me.'

21. My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT .

'If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up.'

22. My mother taught me GENETICS.

'You're just like your father.'

23. My mother taught me about my ROOTS.

'Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?'

24. My mother taught me WISDOM.

'When you get to be my age, you'll understand.'

25. And my favorite: My mother taught me about JUSTICE

'One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you.'

Monday, September 15, 2008

Hello Everyone,

Thanks to all of you have been praying for those of us affected by Hurricane Ike. Your prayers are what has sustained us as we face the aftermath. The picture to the left is of the Bridge City Fire Department, conducting a rescue. Praise to these brave men and women!
I'm pasting a couple of links in this message so you can see more of what we're dealing with: (click on Photo Gallery, then Events, then Hurricane Ike)

Both of these sites are local, so you are looking at my town, my streets, my friends. I still have no word on our house.

As the sun came up this morning, I realized how good the Lord is to provide such a bright day. There is a cool breeze blowing through Hot Springs, Arkansas--something we rarely feel in Orange, Texas . I'm thinking of moving here!! Oh, husband works in Texas. Nevermind.

I'm trying to get a little work done, maybe catch up on some emails, and hopefully, finalize a decision on whether or not I will actually be going to the ACFW conference. Continental Airlines says the airport in Houston will reopen today, and their flights will be running on time. I don't know how that's possible, except that they might not be planning to "catch up" on any flights they missed due to the storm. They are waiving any changes people make to their reservations (a good thing) so anyone who intended to fly out of Houston but can't, will not be charged to change their ticket. The Lord impressed it on my heart to purchase flight insurance (something I rarely do when I'm flying alone) so IF I decide not to go, I will get my ticket money back. God is good.

I'll try and post regularly now that my family and I are settled for a couple of days. We have not decided when we will go back. Estimates are that Orange and Bridge City, the the two towns closest to my home, will be without power for as long as 2-3 weeks. I've heard similar estimates for most of Houston, which is two hours east of where I live, so you get an idea of how massive this storm was, even at a Category 2. Can't imagine what it would have been had the storm been any stronger. The good news is, the water is receding quickly. The storm surge, which caused most of the flooding, came in at over ten feet. Reports this morning say the water has gone down to just over five feet. Hopefully, by the end of the week, most of the water will have returned to the rivers and bayous where it belongs! After that, the cleanup begins...

Thanks again for your continued prayers. I can't believe how much joy and peace God has instilled in me this morning. I sense it is due to your prayers.


Are you tired of those sissy 'friendship' poems that always sound good, but never actually come close to reality?

Well, here is a series of promises that actually speak of true friendship. You will see no cutesy little smiley faces here, just the stone cold truth of our great friendship.

1. When you are sad -- I will jump on the person who made you sad like a spider monkey jacked up on Mountain Dew!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2. When you are blue -- I will try to dislodge whatever is choking you.

3. When you smile -- I will know you are plotting something that I must be involved in.

4. When you're scared -- we will high tail it out of here.

5. When you are worried -- I will tell you horrible stories about how much worse it could be until you quit whining, ya big baby!!!!

6. When you are confused -- I will use little words.

7. When you are sick --Stay away from me until you are well again. I don't want whatever you have.

8. When you fall -- I'll pick you up and dust you off.

9. This is my oath...I pledge it to the end. 'Why?' you may ask -- because you are my FRIEND!

Friendship is like peeing your pants, everyone can see it, but only you can feel the true warmth.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Love to ready cozy mysteries? Wish you could get your hands on more of them? Then have I got a deal for you!
My friend and fellow HPM author, Nancy Mehl is running a fantastic contest on her blog, Mainly Mystery. Enter for you chance to win not one, not two...but twenty-four HPM books from all your favorite authors. Contest rules are posted on her blog. Check it out for your chance to win!

Monday, September 01, 2008

The release of my first book, Where the Truth Lies, which I co-authored with Janelle Mowery, brought a flood of questions about co-authoring, self-editing, plotting, etc. To answer some of these questions, I've come up with a couple of short workshops geared toward helping you become a stronger, more polished writer.

Interested in learning more?
Mark your calendar! I will be teaching a class on Self-Editing for the Fiction Writer at Houston's First Baptist Church on Thursday, September 11, 2008. Inspirational Writer's Alive (IWA!) meets in Room 259 at 7:30. The class will last one hour, with a brief time at the end set aside for Q & A..
Still want more?

Janelle and I will be co-teaching a class on, what else, co-authoring! On Wednesday, February 4, 2008, from 11:00-1:00 in The Woodlands, we'll be teaching all of the basics of conducting research together, forming a plan of action, and sitting down to write. This course will be hosted by the local chapter of The American Christian Fiction Writers. Details on location to follow.

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