Thursday, December 31, 2009

My favorite thing revealed...

So what are my favorite things?

Last week I gave you two choices, my cat Harper Lee and chocolate, but since I’m not sending Harper via priority mail any time soon – the winner is chocolate!

I’m especially fond of dark chocolate – even better if it is in the form of luscious brownies, gelato or cakes. I even love mole sauce (which has ground chocolate in it) on my chicken.
In honor of both chocolate and New Year’s Eve – I am giving away a fabulous jar of gourmet chocolate/orange fondue (just microwave and dip!) along with a signed copy of my book Never Cry Werewolf – and I’ll even throw in one of Shelby’s favorite candies featured in NCW -- gummy bears!

To win – in comments please describe your favorite chocolate treat and who you would share your chocolate fondue and gummies with.
I'll announce the winner NEXT Thursday during our welome the Mystery Bee Week on the blog. Aren't you dying to know who the new bee will be?

Happy New Year!!

The Clearing – April 2010 Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Never Cry Werewolf – Sept 09 HarperTeen

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

My favorite thing: Food!

Anyone who's read my bio will know that I consider myself a closet gourmet chef.

I think people I've entertained at my table will agree. I know my boyfriend would. I am a foodie...through and through. There's just something about taking ingrediants, blending them , and creating something that nourishes and enterains and also brings people together. Who hasn't had a blast sitting around a table full of good food and good friends?


Back in 2001, when I left my position as a marketing events manager in the dot-com world (translation...lots of travel, lots of budgets, lots of stress!), I decided I was going to downsize my life, but I still needed a creative outlet. I thought..."I'll either go to cooking school, or I'll write that novel I've always said I wanted to write." Well, I went to an orientation session at a cooking school and was told it would be $36,000 and to expect to gain at least 50 pounds. Eeek! Hmmm...writing a book would be free and I wouldn't gain from writing.

So, I started my first novel. But, I decided to take cooking classes here and there and I amped up my TV watching, absorbing every cooking show I could to learn technique, knifing skills, and what spices mixed well with what meats and veg. I took two classes taught by the world reknowned Jacques Pepin, one by local Boston hot shot chef, Ken Oringer, and many other classes such as comfort food, trash fish/treasure fish, chicken dishes, pasta, wine pairing, cheeses of the world.


When people ask me if I went to culinary school, I say no, but I trained at the foot of Emeril Lagasse, Tyler Florence, Julia Child, Gordon Ramsay, the Barefoot Contessa, the Iron Chefs (Japanese), Great Chefs of the World, Top Chef, Hell's name it!

My favorite dishes are the simple things like mashed potatoes, chicken pie, and yes, mac 'n cheese! However, I've been known to whip up a pretty mean lobster thermador, rosemary pork loin with mushroom risotto, and seafood stuffed filets of sole with hollandaise (all pictured below...dishes by moi.)

PICT0139 RosemaryPorkandRisotto2 DSC_0399

And, of course, my good old mac 'n cheese...


Anyone hungry now? LOL!!

Congrats to ~Jamie and Brooke Reviews guessed my favorite thing correctly and both win copies of GHOST HUNTRESS: THE AWAKENING and GHOST HUNTRESS: THE GUIDANCE. Please email me at marley_gibson AT yahoo (dot) com with your snail mail addy.

And today's giveaway is a copy of the fabulous Gena Showalter's young adult book INTERTWINED. To be eligible to win, leave a comment about your favorite food that you like to eat or cook!

Marley = )

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

My Favorite Thing: Coffee!

First things first, let's be clear what I mean when I say coffee. I don't mean that dark, black, bitter stuff that makes my mouth turn inside out. My parents drink that by the gallon but unless it has loads of cream and flavored syrups, plain old coffee does not make my list.

Instead, I mean coffee with funny names. Like frappuccino. My winter time favorite at Starbucks (aka my office)  is the mint mocha frappuccino (no whip, to save on calories) and my summer go-to ice blended is the caramel frappuccino. If I'm near a Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf I'll get a white chocolate. Heaven! (Sadly, I am not near a Coffee Bean at the moment. Sniff sniff.)

If I'm feeling moderately healthy, and the weather is cool enough, I'll get a soy chai latte. Great soy proteins from the vanilla soy milk. Yummy, earthy, aromatic chai tea spices. Mmmm, I can just smell it.

Some of my other coffee shop favorites are toffee nut lattes, iced green tea lemonade, and (if I'm going for a major indulgence) a white chocolate mocha. Maybe with peppermint.

Wanna know another favorite? Jaclyn Moriarty. Aka the author whom I wish I was. (Not her life, necessarily, although I'm sure it's quite lovely, but her writing. Sigh.) So, in honor of my stalking victim favorite author, I'm giving away a copy of her book, The Year of Secret Assignments.

To enter, just leave the name of your favorite winter beverage in comments. (No fair copying mine!)

Hugs and happy holidays,

Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp (out now!)
Forgive My Fins (coming June 1, 2010)

PS. No one has guessed the Mystery Bee (mwuahaha) but ~Jamie and Paige can email me (tlc at teralynnchilds dot com) their mailing info to get a slick set of Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp buttons.

Monday, December 28, 2009

My Favorite Thing: Cats!

My secret is out: I am a cat lady. I love cats of all sizes, appearances and temperaments. In fact, on my daily walks around my neighborhood, it’s not unusual for them to peek out of driveways and bushes, to come rub against my ankles, purr and meow.

No surprise that one of my favorite books as a kid was 27 Cats Next Door by Anita Fleagles, about a crazy old cat lady. And yes, there are those who predict this to be my future!

In any case, this past fall has been particularly heartfelt for me for in addition to my 3 year-old Balinese, Rascal (named after the cocky football player in Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress), the long-haired feral cat I call Ivy who shows up for meals, and the 2 year-old half-Bengal next door who comes in my cat door to play, snack and nap at will, we have a new cat: 4 month-old Ruby.

My friend and I found Ruby and her brother, Ranger, as tiny motherless kittens, immediately after the Station Fire which raged along the perimeter of our neighborhood, and took them in. We cared for them together, doing everything we could to bring them to the pictures of health.

When they were about three months old, with the blessing of our vet, we did a trial separation--Ruby with us, Ranger with them--agreeing if either kitten “freaked out,” we’d bring them back together permanently. But we were amazed by how quickly and how well they both adjusted to their new lives and families.

The true surprise, however, was how Rascal took to Ruby. He adores her, acts like an uncle, showing her how to climb trees and break into the cat food cabinet, playing with her, cleaning her, cuddling her, sleeping beside’s astonishing, considering for the first three years of his life, he was a very spoiled “only child.” How was I to know, while saving her life, I was enriching his?

So in celebration of my love for cats on this Our Favorite Things Week, I am going to give away a truly wonderful young adult novel that I recently read by Wendy Mass that featured a kitten, Mango, as one of its main characters: A Mango Shaped Space.

All you need to do to enter is put the name of your pet in a comment. Or, if you don’t have a pet, you can use a friend’s pet’s name. Of course, more detailed comments about your own pets are always welcome, too! Enter as often as you’d like. The winner’s name will be chosen randomly and announced in my blog next Monday (when we talk about our new Bee)...


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

Saturday, December 26, 2009

What are a few of Dona’s favorite things?


Wrapping up “Guess our favorite things” week on Books, Boys, Buzz here is your girl Saturday! You guys have no idea how excited we are to introduce our newest “Bee”.

Have you guys figured out who it is yet? Hints: she’s absolutely gorgeous, writes some hilarious teen drama and is a mother of human and furry kids alike!

No luck? Are you having any luck guessing a few of my favorite things then? Is

Is it cute baby animals?


Or is it amazing shoes that are a work of art (a pair of Christian Louboutins I’m coveting are pictured here….)


Or is it an old English tradition that I recently have brought into my house to share with my friends?


Leave your best guesses and you will win a copy of Heather Davis’ fall releast NEVER CRY WEREWOLF!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

What is Stephanie's favorite thing?

If you are a loyal blog reader, you already know that I love books (duh!), movies, my family and all of my fellow bees. I tried to think of something I love that everyone who knows me could guess. Something that kind of defines me. Okay, maybe it's not that deep.

Could pampering myself be my very favorite thing?
Or how about unique romantic gestures?
Could my weakness be the man in the red suit?
I guess you'll just have to wait until next week to find out. I'll be giving away a copy of Revenge of the Homecoming Queen and a copy of Spring Breakup to anyone who can guess what my most favorite thing is.



My Favorite Things & Christmas Eve

It's Christmas Eve, and I'm reflecting on my favorite things for this special week of giveaway previews.
Hmm... favorite things -- how can you even decide on just one?

Well, here are two -- a homemade chocolate cake (my almond yule log) and Harper, looking like she might like a slice.

Next Thursday, I'll be giving away a copy of my debut - Never Cry Werewolf - along with a special bonus item related to my favorite things. I hope you'll join us all week long for festive giveaways - -books and goodies each day on the blog.

For now, I'll wish you and your families happy holidays... it's time to eat that cake!

Love and Light,

Never Cry Werewolf - Harperteen 09/09
The Clearing - HMH 04/10

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Marley's Favorite Thing?

Hmmm...what is my favorite thing?

Is it the smell of the Christmas tree?

Is it rubbing the soft fur of a kitty cat?

Is it the taste of thick homemade mac and cheese?

Well, you'll just have to tune in next week to find out. If you'd like to take a guess, I'll offer up the following prizes:

* A copy of GHOST HUNTRESS: THE AWAKENING and THE GUIDANCE to the person who guesses my favorite thing?

* A copy of CHRISTMAS MIRACLES to the person who guesses who the new Bee is going to be. Here's a hint: She's one of the sweetest people I know! LOL!!

Since I won't "talk" to you guys until next week, have a VERY Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Marley = )

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

What's Tera's Favorite Thing?

As Tina said yesterday, this week and next the Buzz Girls are talking about their favorite things. (This week we're just teasing you about them and next week... Well, you'll have to tune it to find out how awesome next week will be.) So here's my hint about my favorite thing:
I couldn't write a book without it.
Can you guess? I have a pair of challenges for you.

  • The first three people to guess my favorite thing correctly get a set of Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp buttons.
  • The first person to correctly guess the Mystery Bee gets their choice of Oh. My. Gods. or Goddess Boot Camp.

Keep reading this week to get hints about other Buzz Girl faves and check back next week for the big reveal. And big fun.

Hugs and happy holidays,

Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp (out now!)
Forgive My Fins (coming June 1, 2010)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Kicking off Our Favorite Things!

Over the next two weeks, the Buzz Girls are going to be talking about their favorite things.

As teaser to mine, I offer up a snippet of an appropriate and favorite song from The Sound of Music...

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens

Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens

Brown paper packages tied up with strings

These are a few of my favorite things... my favorite things roses, kittens, kettles (kettles???), mittens, packages...

I don’t think it’s a real stretch to guess which, especially if you’re one of our loyal readers. Anyway, I’ll be back to share stories and pictures and a giveaway of a much-loved book that features that subject next Monday.

In the meantime, Happy Holidays!


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

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Confessions of a really bad gift wrapper

Every year I start out the holiday season with the best intentions. I have my lists of friends and family that have been good and what I'm going to get them. I have visions of perfectly-wrapped packages in a rainbow of colors with color-coordinated tags and bows piled neatly under the tree. I imagine myself and my wrapping supplies sprawled out on the kitchen table enjoying a cup of hot cocoa while leisurely wrapping each gift with love. In my head it looks a bit like this. Then reality sets in. It's a week before Christmas and I have twenty gifts left to buy, two sick kids, a sore throat, and the Christmas parties are starting as you read this. Instead of perfectly-wrapped packages, everything is just kind of lucky to get wrapped in something resembling wrapping paper. I usually realize (just as Target is closing) that my bows and ribbons don't match my paper, or that I ran out of Scotch tape (the boys love stealing it and making giant tape balls) and I end up using packing tape or glue sticks (seriously, this has happened). So I usually end up with gifts that resemble this.

I know that nobody really cares what the gift looks like, but I still have visions of handing over exquisite looking packages one day. Maybe next year...

What holiday chore are you not so good at?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Love is All Around You...

Is there a better time than the Holidays to be in love? Not according to Hollywood. Glowing lights, ice skating, giving gifts, opening your heart, miracles – these all add up to even more romance at the cinema.

I can think of many great romantic comedies with at least a partial holiday theme or setting --While You Were Sleeping, the ending of When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle.

Oher movies -- Elf, It’s a Wonderful Life, The Family Stone, Love Actually, About a Boy -- have love woven through the holiday theme in a more normal sense – love is all around you if you’d only open your eyes to see it. Isn’t that the best message ever?

And if you haven't watched It's a Wonderful Life yet this winter, do it. There is no better hero than George Bailey, the richest man in town. I can't help getting teary when George is reunited with his family at the end and Clarence gets his wings.

Ok, guys -- I'll be watching more of these movies over the next few weeks. What are your top three holiday movies about love?


Never Cry Werewolf – HarperTeen 09/09
The Clearing – Houghton Mifflin Harcourt 04/10

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Chat, A Winner, and some BIG news!

Tomorrow night (Thursday, December 17th) is the online holiday party for the literary agency that I'm with. In celebration of the holiday, they're holding a chat featuring my book, co-authored with the amazing Cecil Murphey, CHRISTMAS MIRACLES. Here are the details! Please join us for the fun!


And the winner of last week's CHRISTMAS MIRACLES contest is....


Please e-mail me directly with your snail mail information at marley.h.gibson AT gmail DOT com. I'll do my best to get it to you before Christmas.

And finally....some AMAZING news for my GHOST HUNTRESS series. My awesome film agent, Sean Daily at Hotchkiss and Associates, on behalf of my literary agent, Deidre Knight, has SOLD the option to GHOST HUNTRESS: THE AWAKENING to Shoulderhill Productions with the intention of making it into a feature film!!! Whoooohoooo!!! Merry Christmas to me! LOLOL!!!

Hope to see you at the TKA chat tomorrow night!

Hugs and Happy Holidays,
Marley = )

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

A New Member of the Family

Daisy at Home, originally uploaded by Tera Lynn Childs.

Yesterday afternoon I dragged my parents out to search for a new dog. When my old dog of fifteen years passed more than two years ago I knew I wouldn't be ready for a new dog anytime soon. Then, after about a year in my apartment in Houston I started thinking about getting a dog. The only hitch? The $500 pet deposit I never seemed to have.

But now that I'm temporarily back home--and with the promise secured from my parents that they'll watch the dog while I travel--it was finally time.

I had done a little on Petfinder (very dangerous if you're a pet lover--they let you search for animals by zip code ... and there are sooo many) and found a couple of dogs that looked good. We drove out west of town to look at the first dog. After meeting her and many, many, many others in two hours at this no-kill shelter, we decided none of them were The One. They had all been skittish and nervous and more interested in anything and anyone than in us.

We had limited time left because we had a tree trimming part at 7:30 and we budgeted half an hour to check out the dogs at the OKC pound. We walked inside, made the rounds through the cages, dogs barking everywhere. Then we came upon Daisy. She was the other dog I'd found online. Supposedly a dalmation-setter mix (but who knows), about 9 months old, and housebroken (bonus!). She was adorable and sweet, so we took her to one of the "acquaintance" rooms to see if she clicked with us. She fetched and played and jumped up on the bench and we fell instantly in love.

Minutes later we were walking her out the door.

Daisy at The Tree Trimming Party

Expect more tales of Daisy in the future, because she's already proving herself to be a most wonderful and unique puppy.

Hugs and happy holidays,

Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp (out now!)
Forgive My Fins (coming June 1, 2010)

Monday, December 14, 2009

The Winner is...

The winner of two books from my contest last week, GUESS AGAIN by Mac Barnett and Adam Rex, as well as a signed copy of TOP TEN USES FOR AN WORN PROM DRESS is...


Congrats, and please e-mail me at with contact information.

Now...we’re all about pets here at the Buzz Girls blog--lots of talk about our cats, and both Tera and Steph are currently contemplating getting dogs. So when I saw this video on CNN recently, I knew I had to post the link for our readers. I mean, the Buzz Girls are also all about creativity...but a deer for a pet?

Check it out here and let us know what you think!


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

Friday, December 11, 2009

Making my list and checking it twice...

I can't believe it is only two weeks until Christmas! Why does it seem to come faster and faster every single year? I still have tons of gifts to buy, and I haven't wrapped a thing yet. As a child, I never realized how much work goes into making Christmas so magical. I'm constantly trying to outdo myself every year to make this time of year extra special for my boys. I found something last year that I fell in love with. It's called The Elf on the Shelf. It is a little elf that comes with a story of how the elf was sent to watch the children to make sure they are being good. Every night the elf goes back to the North Pole to report his findings to Santa. Then every morning the elf is in a different place. My boys have an absolute ball waking up every morning to see where the elf is. I actually woke up, practically in a sweat, the other night because I forgot to move him. I had to tiptoe out to the living room in the middle of the night to find him a new spot. I know that I only have a few more years before they find out "the truth" so I'm trying to cherish every second of the magic.

Isn't he adorable? I hope he tells Santa how good I've been this year. Have you been naughty or nice this year?

P.S.-Stop by Tina Ferraro and Kelly Parra's blog today to read about my favorite Christmas movie and to win a copy of my third book, Spring Breakup.



Thursday, December 10, 2009

Fan Girl Alert: Deb Caletti

Just a quick post on this freezing cold Thursday to confess a fan girl moment. I'm sure you've had a few of them. And let's remember the Meg Cabot incident of mine from 2006 in Atlanta. I am one of those people who gets star-struck.

So imagine my terror/delight at meeting YA uber-goddess Deb Caletti at the Pacific Northwest Writers Association holiday party last Saturday. I have long admired Deb's work and her hard-built career. I managed to get her to sign a copy of her National Book Award finalist, Honey, Baby, Sweetheart for me -- and she was kind enough to talk a little about how she stays in touch with her readers. She was, of course, amazing and sweet in person.

So now, before you zoom to the previous post to comment on Marley's holiday giveaway -- admit something in comments --

Who are you a fan girl for? Have you had any embarrasssing run-ins with your literary hero? If you could meet any author, who would it be?


The Clearing - HMH April 2010
Never Cry Werewolf - HarperTeen Sept 2009

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Holiday Giveaway!

Hey everyone...

I'm back from an amazing vacation in Barbados and trying to get back into the swing of things. So much to do and only a couple of weeks left in 2009. Where did the year go?

Since I don't have much time today, I thought I'd do a little pre-holiday giveaway. I'm going to give away TWO copies of my book CHRISTMAS MIRACLES, co-authored with New York Times bestselling author, Cecil Murphey.


One copy is for you and the other is for you to give as a Christmas present to someone else. To be eligible, please leave a comment in the trail here. You may post/enter as many times as you would like. I'll pick a winner next Wednesday.

Hope everyone is well and getting into the holiday spirit! I know I am!

A very tanned Marley = )

Arf Arf (aka What I Want From Santa)

don we now .., originally uploaded by saikiishiki.

Lately I've been a little obsessed with two things: 1. Finishing the sequel to my June release, FORGIVE MY FINS, and 2. Getting a dog. These two things are actually intimately connected because I have promised myself that as soon as I turn in my book I'm getting a dog.

My book is almost done which means I am thisclose to getting my dog. It's been a while. My poor sweet puppy of fifteen years passed almost two and a half years ago and this period is the only time I haven't had a dog since I was eight years old. And being back in a wintry climate has reminded of one major bonus of a furry friend: they can keep you warm. (Unless, of course, your dog is like my last puppy who did not condone cuddling unless there was serious petting involved.)

Anyway, last night I went a little crazy with the dog obsession and I scoured Flickr for some fun shots of dogs in holiday kit. I made a gallery of some of my favorite holiday dogs, which I can't figure out how to post, but you can see them on the Flickr site.

Hopefully, by this post next week I'll have my brand new-to-me rescue dog. There will definitely be pictures.

How about you, are you a dog person or a cat person? Do you have more than one? And, since I'll soon have to think up name, what are their names?

Hugs and happy holidays,
Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp (out now!)
Forgive My Fins (coming June 1, 2010)

Sunday, December 06, 2009

A Special Holiday Giveaway

A couple months back I attended a very funny presentation given by four children's book writers and illustrators. As part of my goodie bag, I received a brand new hardcover copy of a book called GUESS AGAIN by Marc Barnett and Adam Rex.

Aimed at preschool through 2nd grade, it's considered extremely funny, and especially when read aloud in groups. So I started thinking about the holidays and who I should pass it on to...and realized what I'd really like to do is get it in the hands of a teacher, librarian or parent who could really use it.

So I thought I'd offer it up here at the Buzz Girls blog to one of our readers who knows just what to do with it. To enter, simply write what you would do with it, like to a librarian, to a child, use in your own names or anything. And just for fun, I'll throw in a signed copy of Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress, too, which you can keep!

The contest ends with the announcement of the randomly chosen winner next Monday, December 14th. Good luck!


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

Friday, December 04, 2009

What is your favorite holiday treat?

My local library has a Cookie Walk every year. Volunteers bake cookies for the library and then town residents go buy them by the pound. The money helps pay for library programs and services through the year. Instead of your typical chocolate chip cookies, I wanted to try to make some unique treats this year. I decided on some brownies shaped like Christmas trees with candy cane trunks and cream cheese frosting and sprinkles. I also made some peanut butter cookies with pretzel antlers and M&M eyes and nose that sort of looked like Rudolph.
It got me thinking of all the different kinds of treats that come out just at the holidays. I remember my grandma making divinity in the past. I never really cared for it but it reminds me of her. Sadly, I hardly ever see it anymore. I do love peanut brittle though. My husband goes crazy for fudge. My kids are wild for candy canes and my stepbrother loves egg nog. I'm even planning my first attempt at gingerbread people in a few weeks.
What is your favorite treat this time of year?



Thursday, December 03, 2009

Werewolves, etc...

Did you see the New Moon movie yet?

It’s playing at the theatre near my house, but I haven’t seen it. As for the whole vampire vs. werewolves question – I think you know where I stand.

Actually, I had such a firm idea of who my werewolves are in Never Cry Werewolf, that I didn’t read the sequels to Twilight after I read the first book in the summer of 2006. I didn’t want to see wolves in any way other than I had seen them in my mind’s eye. Maybe that’s lame of me – but I was so in love with my character Austin and his Brit wolf family (who will appear if I ever do a sequel) that I just didn’t want to learn more about Jacob.

Obviously, people love the Twilight series, which is a great thing. When you see middle school boys and even grown men carrying one of the Twilight books in hardback, well that’s priceless. The additional attention it’s given YA books in general and paranormal YA in specific -- is also priceless. Seeing Burger King commercials that mention Twilight.... uh....

Anyway, I will always vote for werewolves, but I’ll save my reasons why for the comments section…

What about you? Have you or will you see New Moon? And do you love vampires or werewolves more?

Big, hairy hugs ~

Never Cry Werewolf -- HarperTeen 09/09
The Clearing -- HMH 04/10

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Gone to the Beach

I hope everyone -- including my fellow Buzz Girls -- had an awesome Thanksgiving!! Can't believe it's already December. Where has this year gone?

I'll keep my post brief because I'm deep in the writing cave for GHOST HUNTRESS 4 - THE COUNSELING and am headed out on a beach vacation to a very lovely undisclosed location for the next week. I'm looking forward to sun, fun, relaxation, (and writing), and going on my first "real" SCUBA dive.

I'll leave you with this image...

Picture 049

Marley = )

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Advent Calendars

It's the first day of December (duh) which also means it's the first real day of the Christmas season. Growing up, one of my favorite parts about December (aside from all the presents near the end bit) was having an Advent Calendar.

Usually it was made of lightweight cardboard with a brightly colored picture on the front. On each of the first 25 days of December I got to punch out the number corresponding to the date to get my prize. Usually a small piece of tree-, santa-, reindeer-, or gift-shaped chocolate.

From the ages of 2 to 12 that was enough.

But these days I'm excited by more unique advent calendars. One which you can fill yourself with a variety of treats, prizes, or little gifts. I found some darling ones on (which is also a secret vice, but that's another post).

I absolutely adore this advent calendar made of a string of mini stockings from karlacola.

I love this Christmas tree made of stacked, craft paper-covered boxes from LBlal001.

Or, for more flexibility, there are these adorable cotton baggies from nuvonova.

Now, the real question is: What would you put in your advent calendar?


Oh. My. Gods. and Goddess Boot Camp (out now!)
Forgive My Fins (Katherine Tegen Books, June 2010)

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Sunday, November 29, 2009

Wendy and Tina Rock Applebee's!

My husband, kids and drove to Utah this past week for a big Ferraro family Thanksgiving. And among the fun and festivities was my first-ever meet up with an author I have long considered a good friend: Wendy Toliver!

She met us for lunch at Applebee's, and luckily my daughter, sisters-in-law, niece, nephew and his girlfriend were kind enough to let us go sit at a separate table and "talk shop." (The rest of the Ferraros went off on a separate outing.) Which was great fun, especially listening to Wendy's excitement about her upcoming Simon Pulse release, Lifted, due out on June 8.

Afterwards, my daughter took some stand-there-and-smile pictures of us, but one or another of us kept blinking, so we threw up our hands and got weird. Which worked best for both of us!

Feel free to throw out a caption for this picture! I'll start with my own: "Uh-huh, not me!"

It was great fun to finally meet the lovely and talented Wendy Toliver--the first of many get-togethers, I am sure!


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