The DNA has been received!

How thoughtful of them to give me a to-do list to keep me busy while I await my results!

Because I don’t have enough to do already!

Anyway, I should have my results in 4 weeks, so it took a week to get to them. Still on track for finding out in 4 to 6 weeks, as they promised.

By this time next month, I will know who I am!

 

Birthday Week CakeWalk (BWCW) Day 2

Day 2, people!!

Today’s cake is brought to you courtesy of my daughter, who gifted it to me, by way of the Wells IGA. She asked me what I wanted and I told her to surprise me, but to get something she liked, too.

Here it is: Carrot Cake

Grade: Pass. Not as good as the chocolate one I had on Day 1, but still good. I would get it again. It could be that I just have an inherent bias toward chocolate anything, so I have to allow for that.

This one has cream cheese frosting, as expected, which was pretty good.

Mini-Carrot Cake from Wells IGA

Looking forward to Day 3!~ 🙂

The BRAVE Interview #10 April 2017: Andrea

Please enjoy this month’s BRAVE Interview with Andrea!

WHO are you? My name is Andrea Maffeo and I am Karen’s sister-in-law.  LOL! I am a medical secretary and have worked for MGH Medical Group for 18 years now. I have been married for over 25 years to the most patient man a wife could ever ask for.  Honestly don’t know what I would do without him.

WHAT is your One Brave Thing? My one brave thing is not something you would expect…….but to me it was my one brave thing.  It’s not something I did for myself like overcome a fear, it’s something I did for someone else.

WHEN did you do it? I did it in July 2016.

WHERE did it occur? Melrose Wakefield Hospital

HOW did you make it happen? Well, that’s a tough one.  I just had to say the dreaded words………’It’s time to let her go.’

WHY did you do it? My mom has never been a well woman, at least not for the past few years.  She was in a rehab/nursing home when she became ill.  She was rushed to the hospital and diagnosed with a small bowel obstruction.  While having a CT scan she vomited and aspirated.  She ended up in the ICU and all her organs started to fail.  She went into septic shock due to the aspiration.  The only thing that was keeping her alive was the ventilator.  So the decision had to be made.  And since I was her healthcare proxy, my poor dad couldn’t make the decision at the time, I had to make the decision to let her go.  It was the hardest decision I ever had to make in my life, but I knew it was the right one.  I didn’t want her suffering anymore and I knew neither did she.  This is my One Brave Thing.

Thank you for sharing your heartfelt story, Andrea!

Read the other BRAVE interviews here: https://kwrites.com/?s=The+BRAVE+Interview

If you would like to be interviewed for this series about something brave you have done in your life, email me at kmcwrites.com, or message me on my Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/k.m.creamer.author/!

The BRAVE Interview #9 April 2017: Charlotte

Please enjoy this month’s BRAVE interview with Charlotte!

Who are you? I am a Registered Nurse, a Mom to 3 adult children (where has time gone?!), and a 5 month Golden Retriever named Charlie. I was born and raised in Maine, and have lived here ever since. I live in the small town of Limerick, Maine, a quiet country town.

What is your ‘one brave thing’? My One Brave Thing?  Let’s see. I have done a few brave things up to this point in my life, but the one I’d have to say that tops all was taking care of my terminally ill brother. He was 51 yrs old when diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer, mets to the brain. His wish was to get home to Maine to die. I had no choice but to be brave, and honor is wishes. It was a very difficult, emotional time.

When did you do it?  In June 2007, my brother called me from the hospital in Florida, telling me he was very sick and needed me to fly down to help him.

Where did it occur? Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

How I made it happen: flew down, packed up his apartment.  I rented an RV, and found portable oxygen, filled his meds and things for the trip. Right out of the hospital, we were on our way home to my house. It was a rough ride in the back of an RV. I stayed back there with him, while my fiancé and my brother’s friend took turns driving. I wasn’t sure my brother would make it all the way, but he said he was okay each time I asked. I had spoken with hospice while traveling, and I got things set up for when he arrived. My bother lived only 5 days here, but made it to where he wanted to be, and that was home!

It is an honor to print your story, Charlotte, and I thank you so much for sharing it with us all!

Read the other BRAVE interviews here: https://kwrites.com/?s=The+BRAVE+Interview

If you would like to be interviewed for this series about something brave you have done in your life, email me at kmcwrites.com!

Time warp

I’m excited for the new version of  Beauty and the Beast coming out this Friday. To get into the proper mindset, I decided to watch the earlier version from Disney last night.

My husband and I were sprawled out on the couch, and our teenaged daughter was in the recliner. We watched the movie on Blu-ray together in the living room.

As the movie the opening credits rolled, I suddenly flashed on the first time I watched this movie, in the early 90’s. I was so excited to buy the video! The VCR was in our bedroom, and as soon as we got home we popped it in and got into bed to watch it. Our then-infant son (who is now twenty-five!) was lying on the bed between us as we watched.

I was completely transported back to that room and for just a few seconds, felt those feelings. What an amazing gift.

I was struck by how many lines from this movie have made their way into our everyday life!

Such as:

  1. ‘It’s over, Beast!’
  2. ‘You have a library?’
  3. ‘…promises you don’t intend to keep,’
  4. ‘If she doesn’t eat with me, then she doesn’t eat at all!
  5. ‘I’m especially good at expectorating…’ What can I say? I like big words! I cannot lie!

I use these quotes all the time! Beauty and the Beast, the gift that keeps on giving… on so many levels.

I leave you with the official trailer to watch here:

The BRAVE Interview #7 February, 2017: Jennifer W. Smith

Here is this month’s BRAVE Interview with author, Jennifer W. Smith. ENJOY!

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Who is Jennifer W. Smith?

I put my family first, so I’d start with I’m a wife and mother.  My next top three answers: I’m a novelist, a world traveler, and a foodie. I live in a cozy New Hampshire town in a busy household including a blue-eyed kitty and a collie who looks just like Lassie. I’ve had other careers before I became a fulltime writer in 2015. I’ve used my experiences from when I was a flight attendant and interior designer to inspire my story ideas.

What is my One Brave Thing for 2016?

Well, if you asked me my brave thing for 2015, I’d have said publishing my first novel, Flying Backwards. In 2016 I published two books, The Rare Pearl and The Forsaken Pearl, but I’d say the One Brave Thing was pushing myself to maneuver—and conquer—the digital age to produce all aspects of publishing my latest books—mainly book cover design. The cover is critical. It’s the first thing a reader sees. If the cover isn’t appealing they won’t bother to flip it over and read the back. I worried that I’d be unsuccessful, but I was determined to give it my best effort. Let me state, my skills were basic at first. I’m happy to report that after all the puzzle solving I’m pleased with the final products.

Why did you do it?

So why make my own book covers if I could just pay someone? Well, I love design in general. As I mentioned I’m a former interior designer by trade. Also, I spent a decade taking photos and documenting my family’s life in scrapbooks. So a part of me thought it would be fun and creative. Besides, I found it difficult to explain what I wanted my cover to look like to someone who hadn’t read my story. I paid to have the cover done for my first novel Flying Backwards. I explained what I wanted, and I do love the cover, but it’s not perfect. For example, in that story the main character is an international flight attendant and the airplane on the cover is a domestic plane (it should have four engines instead of two). I know it’s a tiny detail. But the control is what I like—and it is kind of exciting and fun.

When and how did you do it?

I spend loads of time the whole year reading and watching YouTube tutorials about how to produce a successful book cover. Who knew fonts had so much impact! It took me a while as I tried different programs, but eventually I discovered which ones worked best for me. My fellow friends and authors recommend sites where I could purchase photos or fonts. I also stumble across Derek Murphy’s book cover design tutorials which helped me immensely. After vastly improving my MS Word skills, I managed to produce book covers for my Broken Water Series, which include The Rare Pearl and The Forsaken Pearl. I was able to manage 95% it, but I confess, my husband helped with the file conversions. I may have shed some tears of frustration throughout the learning curve, but it was worth it.

Where did you do it?

I learned, and continue to learn, right from the comfort of my home. After I got used to navigating the internet—I realized the world is at my fingertips. With dedication to succeed, I’m grateful to live and thrive in this modern age. This is a usable tool to become self-published. I hope I inspire other budding authors to give it a try.

I always love to hear from readers. Please check out my website at JenniferWSmith.com for book trailers, release updates, events, blogs, and more. Also, you can read the first chapter of The Rare Pearl, Book One in the Broken Water Series for FREE. You can find me on Twitter @authorjenwsmith and Facebook at AuthorJenniferWSmith.

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Be still

I am sitting here on the couch trying to write a ‘signature talk’, which would be so much (expletive) easier if I could just decide on one fullsizerendertopic, already! I am trying to figure out how to combine my metaphysical nurse blog with my kwrites blog under one domain, a version of my name, which I bought 14 months ago as part of a workshop but that’s where it ended. I never did anything with it, except to look at it longingly from time to time. Now I am trying to decide if combining it all is even a good idea!
I am giving several topic-specific talks over the next few months and I am trying to write those.
I am writing a parent ad (sorry, but this feels like a ploy to get more money from us) for the high school yearbook because my graduating daughter WANTS one.
I am debating (OMG! YES! STILL!) if I should give yet another talk at an upcoming event (this internal debate has been raging for months now) and if so, WTF to base the presentation on.
And then I realize that I am actually doing none of these things, except the ‘just sitting here on the couch’ part. Okay, and eating a large quantity of chocolate (#lunch).
Surrounded by paper. And pens. And my laptop. And my iPhone playing Pandora.
I am a (expletive) mess.
And then this song comes on:

And I hear the words:  Be still and trust my plan. I’m more than you think I am.

And then, with tears streaming, I know it’s true.

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