Friday, September 09, 2011

I'm going to Disney World!!!

Okay, not really. But my family was lucky enough to go to Disney two summers in a row. The summer of 2009 was the first and most magical year. My boys were four and just turning six. It truly made for some incredible summer memories to see the looks on their faces as they saw Mickey, Minnie and the gang.
If you have been to Walt Disney World you already know that it isn't just a place where you show up with no game plan. I had bought a giant travel book full of insider info and had been post-it note scarring it for months. Armed with personalized maps of the parks and extremely detailed agendas, I successfully micro-managed my family around the parks. I had our timing down to the second so that we could squeeze every last drop of family fun out of our seven days.

What I didn't anticipate (stupidly) was how amazed the boys would be every time we saw one of the characters in full costume. Picture me meeting Ryan Gosling and you might be able to imagine the excitement the kids had when they saw Mickey for the first time in person. Luckily I was smart enough to buy the biggest memory card I could find so I can always relive those magical moments.

By the time we went back the next year some of the magic had already faded. They were still excited to see the characters but my oldest whispered in my ear that it was just a person dressed up in a suit. I was so sad to see that he was growing up so fast, in part to things he heard at school from kids with older siblings. I was proud of him that he didn't want to ruin the magic for his younger brother but I wanted to keep him innocent and believing in Mickey Mouse forever. Okay, that sounds a bit nutty, but it was the first time I realized how fast he was growing up. Then he motioned for me to put my ear back down to his mouth and he whispered, "The REAL Mickey Mouse is WAY too busy to hang out here every day." My heart nearly exploded with joy that the magic would indeed live on for a little bit longer.

Do you have a favorite summer vacation memory?



Monday, September 05, 2011

A Favorite Summer Moment

Many memories will return to me when I think back on this past summer, but there’s one moment that defined the whole season, and went on to impact the lives of many others, as well...

My daughter had just returned home from college, and was unpacking. She was telling me how she and some friends had gone crazy for The Hunger Game series, and handed me the first book. I went to put it on her shelf--when I realized she was giving it to me to read.

Now while we are like mother/like daughter when it comes to a passion for reading, she’s all about sci-fi/futuristic/world-building stories, while I lean heavily toward realistic contemporaries. While we have periodically had overlaps in books we’d enjoyed, for the most part, we do not fall deeply in love with the same ones.

She must have read my face because she said, “Read the first 30 pages. If you don’t like it, give it back, no problem. But try it.”

I warily curled up with it, probably with one eyebrow suspiciously cocked...but then, something happened. Way before page 30, I got involved. Soon I became breathlessly hooked. As a reader and a writer. In fact, when I wasn’t reading it, I was following my daughter around the house to discuss it. And talking about it to anyone who would listen. (Sans spoilers, of course!)

As soon as moved onto book two, my son picked up grabbed the first one. He fell for it just as deeply, and talked it up to his friends who then wanted to read it...and on and on...

As of this writing, I can't begin to tell you how many people have read our three copies, or whose hands they are actually in. (But people, I need them back because my husband wants to read the series, too!)

So I think it’s fair to say that in my little slice of the world, it was a summer of The Hunger Games. And next March 23, you can bet a lot of people in my life will be lining up for the movie!

So tell me...has a book or series made a major impact in your life at some point, too?


Tina Ferraro
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
How to Hook a Hottie
The ABC’s of Kissing Boys

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Goodbye to Summer!

As it's been in the 90s home in Utah and at the time this posts I'll be coming back from my cousin's wedding in Dallas, Texas, which has made the news for having the longest stretch of over 100 degree days, it's hard to believe that it's actually September. But it is! And all this week, the Buzz Girls are going to be sharing their summer highlights.

As I posted in August, CLICK HERE, this was the Summer of Reunions for me. A family reunion, two high school reunions (my husband and I graduated from our respective high schools the same year), and a work reunion for the advertising agency where I used to work. All were very fun and as reunions have a way of doing, they gave me an occasion to reminisce and remember my roots. All in all, I can honestly say I've had some pretty darn amazing people in my life and I couldn't be more thankful for their support and love.

Some of my favorite moments of the summer include:
  • hanging with my almost two-year old nephew, who lives in Denver
  • witnessing the kids in my writing camps become better writers in just two weeks
  • boating in Pineview Reservoir (I only got to use my new wakeboard once, though, because I injured my back in May)
  • getting to meet talented authors Lara Zielin, Sheila Nielson, and Sarah Ockler
  • appetizers on a rooftop terrace overlooking downtown Denver with my husband, brother, sister-in-law, best girl friend from high school, and best guy friend from college
  • my youngest son's 5th birthday party which started 4 hours early and ended 5 hours late
  • rescuing Miller the Duck off the highway in Ogden Canyon (he's doing GREAT in his new home, by the way) CLICK HERE if you missed that story.

Though it's been a fabulous summer, I'm really looking forward to the fall. Now that my back is doing much better and I'm finally able to tie my own shoes, I'm going to start practicing yoga again real soon, and I'm excited to get back to work on a new YA book proposal. I've also been asked to be a writer in residence, along with the mega-talented Sydney Salter, at an alternative high school, which is a great honor.

Enough about me! What about you? What are some of the highlights of your summer and is it just me, or are you looking forward to fall, too?

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Summer's Nearly Over...

Starting this Sunday, we're back to fresh, daily content, and kicking off with us all sharing a favorite summer moment! Be sure to join back in the fun!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Quick Reader Poll!

Lately I've found myself curious about reading formats...hardcover versus paperback versus digital versus audio. All of which I embrace! I find myself watching people in airports and coffee shops, reading dialogues here on the internet, and taking mental notes.

My secondary interest is WHERE the book came from. An on-line store? A brick-and-mortar store? A library? A friend? A gift? Other?

So I thought it might be fun for us take a quick poll through our comments. Feel free to list the name of the book you are reading and the author, if you want, but specifically tell us:

--the book's format


--how/where you got it!

I will go down in the comments!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Saying Goodbye to Summer

Okay, so technically summer is still here for a few weeks (although I must confess to loving Seattle-esque summers way more than those in Oklahoma, Houston, and Vegas--it's more like spring) but I can sense it winding down. The air will get crisper, the rain will come (maybe?), and I'll soon be cuddling with a good book and watching as the leaves fall.

Fall is probably my favorite time of the year, but I think I'll actually miss summer this year. Some of the fun things I've done this summer include:

  • driving from Oklahoma to Seattle and sleeping in National Parks
  • going sailing for the first time
  • traveling to New York, Washington DC, Houston, and Las Vegas
  • finally (!!!) moving to Seattle
  • going to outdoor concerts with Heather Bee and friend Liz Gallagher
  • walking Daisy around Capitol Hill

So, what (if anything) will you miss about summer?


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

4 Bees Buzzing

It's not often that we get a bunch of Buzz Girl Bees together, but thanks to a lovely invitation bestowed upon my daughter and me by Dona, four of us found ourselves together this past weekend in her Seattle area home. Here's me, Dona, Heather and Tera:

Dona served tea and a table full of goodies. Here we are, checking it all out before the first doorbell:

While all the food was yummy, from moment one, my eyes were on the cupcakes! Check out the careful and creative designs, made with a rich butter cream frosting:

Believe me when I say, I got my fair share!

Anyway, the tea was not only a lot of fun, but a good networking and brainstorming event where we got to discuss books we've been reading, and our current works-in-progress. In fact, I wrote down notes afterwards on comments made about my current book that I know will help me in its execution.

We think it's possible we won't get a substantial number of Buzz Girls together again until the national Romance Writers of America conference in Anaheim, California next July--but who knows? We'll keep spirits high and fingers crossed!

And thanks again to Dona for being the hostess with the mostest!


Tina Ferraro
Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress
How to Hook a Hottie
The ABC's of Kissing Boys