Treat everyday as a new adventure

Kiley’s Stories

I have been working on a children’s book series titled, Kiley’s stories.

The first book is out and it is, “Kiley Wished for a Puppy

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This is a new experience for me. And I am finding it to be a lot of fun! So now I am working on the second book in the series titled, “Kiley Visits the House of Mirrors”

Not sure exactly how I want the cover yet, but here’s a preview.

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I found this version a little plain so I added a tree. But my biggest critics (my sons) say it needs to be different. So I will keep trying different ideas.

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So we will see. 🙂 I will keep you posted.

Hugs till next time!


News and Journalists

Today I want to talk about journalists and the news media. Growing up I learned a valuable lesson about not believing everything you read or hear about in the news. As a child, my family lived next to a freeway overpass, and the off-ramp ran parallel with our yard. Many times cars would come speeding off the freeway lose control on the ramp and roll down the hill, landing in the culvert.

My mom had a favorite story that she would tell about one of those times.

A woman lost control of her car. It rolled down the hill and landed upright in the ditch below. Her windshield was blown out, her car banged up, and the tires flattened. (Thank God this was in the 60’s because cars were made a lot sturdier back then.) The car that had been behind her stopped, the gentleman jumped out and ran down the hill to see if she was okay. My mom had heard the crash, ran outside and saw the car. She ran back in and called the fire department. (There were no cell phones or 911 back then. ) The man who had stopped helped the woman out of the car, and she laid down in the ditch in front of her car. Why she took her shoes off, I haven’t a clue, but the man placed the woman’s shoes on the dash of her damaged car. The emergency vehicles arrived and a journalist from the newspaper.

We were a small town and boy if anything happened reporters were there. (Police scanners, maybe?) In the paper the next day the story read, (I can’t quote the story, word for word. This is just the basic gist of it. Besides it happened almost fifty years ago.)

Woman loses control of her car and rolls down the embankment landing in the culvert below. Being ejected through the windshield and landing in the ditch, her shoes were ripped from her feet and lay on the dashboard of the car.

Okay, well we know that isn’t how the story went, but evidently, journalists like to make it a little more exciting. And it sold papers, right?

I always thought that journalists were supposed to give the facts. Investigate, interview, dig a little deeper, and write the true story. But throughout history, it seems that stories are embellished and sensationalized to get readers attention. They don’t even bother to get both sides of a story, good or bad; they just run with it.

And in today’s world of the internet people are tried and hung out to dry based on just one journalist’s opinion. Frankly, I thought that a person was innocent until proven guilty.

Now you know why President Trump bans certain reporters and news agencies.
But this isn’t about him it’s about all of the people everywhere. People whose lives get turned upside down just so a reporter can get a story or a newspaper can earn a buck or two.

One last thought. My heart goes out to all the people whose lives have been impacted by the California wildfires. Their lives have not only been shattered by the fires, but also from the news agencies showing their houses burning to the ground.

That’s it for now. Hugs till next time.

Wasted Time

Dad passed away in November 2017 (Can’t believe on the 22nd it will already be a year.) and my step-sister moved Jinny to Oregon at the end of April this year. My oldest son said he didn’t want Jinny moving to Oregon and when I asked him why he told me he didn’t want me going through what I did after my mom passed away. Frankly, I never knew he noticed. You see after my mom died, I went through a deep dark depression. But I reassured my son that I had plenty of things to keep me busy. Things that had been set aside while I was busy taking care of dad and Jinny.

I started writing this post months ago. As for wasted time, well, there have been days. 🙂 But, other days have been good and productive. I am still working (procrastinating) on “Wisps of Words”. So close and yet so far away. Or so it feels.

I also wrote and illustrated a children’s picture book. Oh, the trials and tribulations of that! Right now I am waiting for the proof in the mail. Oh, the waiting is so hard! I only ordered it yesterday. Haha! Being the first time at attempting a children’s book, illustrations, formatting, worrying about getting it right, is stressful! But! I have high hopes and goals for Kiley. Kiley is my creative baby with many stories and adventures. And I’ve learned a lot and yet have so much more to learn.

But I still find myself wasting time. Staring at the walls. Even though my brain is still going full force. Taking a nap. Wandering around and procrastinating. Putting everything on hold and not accomplishing anything because I know I should be working on ‘this’ and not ‘that’ and yet my heartstrings are pulling me towards ‘that’ so I don’t work on anything! Do you have days like that?

Well, anyway. let me introduce you to Kiley and her story about how she wished for a puppy.

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Hope everyone is having a productive day! Did you remember to turn your clocks back? Happy Sunday!

I will return! Hugs till then!

Dad Died Today

Back on October 2nd. this year I created a Go Fund Me page. You can find it here.

My goal was (and still is) to raise $10,000.00 to help pay for caregivers so my dad and step-mom, Jinny, could stay at home until after the holidays. I thought that if all my facebook contacts, twitter followers, and family and friends donated just a dollar each, I could come really close to my goal.

And then my computer crashed.

Just before that I had written a post titled, Dementia and in that post I had told you about my dad being in the hospital and that they had to tie him down. Must have been a horrible experience for him. I took pics with my cell phone of his hand over a week later and want to share them with you.

My dad passed away last night at 10:09 pm. He went peacefully in his sleep. He was at home under the watchful eye of loving caregivers. Caregivers who have become part of our family. But now, I need to reach that goal more than ever on my gofundme page. Jinny still needs 24 hour care and with dad’s passing she will lose half of his social security, the Veteran’s pension amount will be reduced, and we will lose the Veteran’s homemaker program. It is where the Veteran’s contract with a caregiver agency and send a caregiver 16 hours a week at no cost to us.

I don’t like asking for help for me, but this is important to me. I know we all have our own problems that we face every day and money is tight for each and every one of us. Even if you could just share my blog and my gofundme page, it would be a great help.

My dad’s best friend and neighbor told me that someone had told him to always count your blessings. I agree.

Even though Thanksgiving isn’t until tomorrow I want to share with you a few things I am thankful for today.

I am thankful that I got to spend the time that I did with my dad. I am thankful for the many phone conversations we shared, because those will be what I miss the most and I am thankful that he is at peace now.

I wish you all a Thanksgiving filled with much love, many hugs, and blessings that you will treasure forever.

Much love and hugs from me, Karen.





Dad Called Today

That’s the title of the memoir I am writing. “Dad Called Today” it started out with me wanting to share the daily phone calls between dad and myself. Phone calls that made me smile and laugh. Some that made me sigh or cry. While others had me banging my head on the table. But somehow, somewhere along the way, dad developed dementia. And more than likely, Lewy Body Dementia. 

(The other day I heard on the news that Robin William’s widow wrote an essay for a neurology journal about Lewy Body Disease and you can read it here, http://www.neurology.org/content/87/13/1308.full )

Dementia is a debilitating disease of the mind. Most people associate it with forgetfulness, but there is way more to it than that. Dementia patients might get confused and have a hard time focusing. They get agitated and angry. They might yell, scream, cuss, and some get violent. They can have hallucinations. Many nights they act out bad dreams, hitting, kicking, moaning and yelling during sleep. But underneath all of that, they have their own personalities; Years in the making. So, dealing with a dementia patient can be hard. There are medications that can be prescribed, but even then they can still have outbursts.

They need help. But, putting them in a convalescent home isn’t always the right answer.

Case in point: Thursday morning, Dad woke up screaming that he couldn’t breathe. Dad also has congestive heart failure. The caregiver gave him a breathing treatment, called me, and then called 9-1-1. The paramedics were told that he had dementia and were given his medication list. When I arrived at the hospital, I told them about his dementia. About an hour after my sister arrived the doctor decided to admit dad. I had Joyce put a mark next to the three medications that dad takes for his dementia and told her to make sure the nurses made a copy of the list and that they needed to be aware of his condition. Ten thirty that evening I got a call saying that dad wanted to talk to his wife so I called the caregiver who was with Jinny and gave her the message. Due to Jinny’s limited speech and dad’s hard of hearing, the phone call did not go well. Dad started yelling and cussing and he threw the phone at the nurse. Jinny’s caregiver called me and the hospital called Joyce. They told Joyce that they were calling security. Joyce asked them, wasn’t dad given his meds? And the nurse replied, “What meds?”

Dad is 92 years old. He was weak and couldn’t even get out of bed and yet they put him in restraints like a common criminal! And the nurse he had didn’t even know that he has dementia and on top of everything else she didn’t know how to deal with the situation. This is a hospital where 80% of their patients are elderly. Doctors and nurses are supposed to be professional people and yet…There’s more, much more for me to tell, but it will have to wait for another day. I need to get ready to go visit dad.

Till then; HUGS!



Last month I had problems with my computer. UGH! So I picked up flash drives and began the process of pulling off the impossible task of,  “The great save.”

You know how it goes, “Oh no! Do I have enough room on this flash drive? No? Darn.”

So you put these files here. Organize those files there and you get, “Are you sure you want to save this file without its properties?”

“What? Wait! What file?” And then you get the same thing for the next 151 files. “Yes? No? What do I do?”

It’s frustrating. Most of those notifications have to do with pictures. Book covers. Photographs you’ve purchased to use on book covers. Photos that my son had painstakingly cropped to use in creating some of my book covers. UGH!

On the bright side, I have had these problems for quite some time and had started the process of saving everything to DVDs about six months ago. Not sure how much I actually got saved but…

Then I closed my eyes and crossed my fingers and let my son reset my laptop back to factory settings. Kinda cool. It’s like getting a new computer. The downside is trying to figure out where everything is on the flash drives. (I did make sure to put all of my writing projects on their own flash drive and using red puffy paint; I put a heart on it.)

But I am still having glitches along the way, and my son says the next step is nuking it. So we will see.

Okay, Now for updates. I am still working on getting the outside of my house painted. I am finally making some progress. As long as the procrastination bug doesn’t bite me. (I’ve been working on it for over a year now. Haha.)

I have also been working on my short story collection, “Wisps of Words.” Editing. Rewriting. Adding new stories and I have taken out three stories that just don’t fit the theme. The stories are more about losing the ones we love and how we deal with the loss and the three stories I took out are about finding love. I will hold onto them and eventually put them into a different collection.

I have also been working on my memoir, “Dad Called Today.” When I first started, “Dad Called Today” it was to be about the everyday phone calls that my Dad and I shared. Calls that made me smile and LOL. Calls that made me sigh and sometimes want to cry. And then there are the calls that make me want to bang my head on the table, throw up my hands and say, “Huh?” But somehow, somewhere along the way my Dad developed dementia, and the book has turned into so much more. I still hope to make people smile when they read it, and maybe they’ll shed a few tears, but overall I hope it sheds some light on dementia and will help people understand. It isn’t a self-help book. It’s not a book on advice. Heck, I’m muddling through it just like everyone else who has dealt with it or is dealing with it. Everyone is different, and there are no right and wrong answers.

I’ve also been reading and will be putting up some reviews for Eden Baylee, Chris Ward, and Robert Pruneda, over the next week or two.

Okay, so those are my updates. Stay tuned for more! Till then; HUGS!




It’s my anniversary here on WordPress! I can’t believe it’s been 5 years! My how time flies.

This is the notification I received.

“Happy Anniversary with WordPress.com!
You registered on WordPress.com 5 years ago.
Thanks for flying with us. Keep up the good blogging.”
And here is the link to  My first post!   And I am not sure the link will even work! LOL! Let me know if it doesn’t and I will try and get the right one. Okay, I think I got it!
So much has changed since then. All I can say is wow! Later this week I will give you the updated versions of the links that are shared in that post.
I’ll be bringing you some more reviews this week and until then; HUGS!

Another Review This Week

A few years ago, I picked up  Dad Versus The Grocery Store, by Benjamin Wallace. It was originally titled, “Dumb White Husband vs. The Grocery Store” You can find my short review here. And the ebook is FREE to download! (Just click on the title.)

Recently, I was bored. 🙂 and decided to see what books I have on my tablet and came across,  Dads Versus Zombies by none other than Benjamin Wallace.


Now, I am a big fan of zombies. (I have and watch, “The Walking Dead” on blueray.) My son keeps telling me, “Mom, you’re never going to find out what happened or how it is going to end, because it never ends.” Dang! I’m a big fan of closure and happily ever afters. So I decided to see how Benjamin comes up with a theory as to how the zombies came about and how he would end his story. LOVED IT!

Benjamin has a great sense of humor and he had me laughing out loud throughout different parts of the book. He kept me turning the pages and wanting more. Okay, I have to admit his ending was okay…Kinda cliche, but…I have to give it 5 Stars!

You can check out Benjamin’s Amazon Author page here. He’s got a lot to choose from.

I will have a couple more reviews to post next week, but till then; HUGS!

Review for “Charade at Sea”

About a month ago Eden Baylee sent me an email telling me about her newest novella, “Charade at Sea” She also sent me a $2.00 gift card, but she told me, and I am quoting her.

As a dear friend, colleague, and someone I’ve enjoyed crossing paths with in the past, I’d like to offer you a gift certificate to purchase the book. As you know, marketing is getting more and more difficult, and for now, I’d rather gift a book to someone who may potentially read it, than throw money away at a book promoter.
No obligation to buy, read, or review. Just a gift for you, if not for my book, then for anything else you like.

Now being the dingbat that I am, I clicked buy now on the link and purchased the book before redeeming the gift certificate. But that’s okay because it was money well spent. I enjoyed reading “Charade at Sea”


Charade At Sea

“Charade at Sea” is the third novella that Eden has written for the “Lei Crime Series”

It features Lainey Lee and  Max Scott, who had met (in a previous novella) in Kauai. Max invites Lainey Lee to take a cruise with him and the mystery begins…

Eden has a special way of writing suspense and keeps you guessing as to who the bad guy really is. The novella was well written. A quick read. It has a conclusion. Not really an ending. But has more of an open ended feeling to it, leaving you wanting more. And I did want more, more backstory, that is, so I used that gift certificate to pick up, “A Snake in Paradise” Which is the first novella Eden wrote for the “Lei Crime Series” But more on that next week.

You can find Eden’s Amazon page here along with all of her books. She is a very talented writer so there are quite a few to choose from!

Now I am headed off to buy the second book, “Seal of a Monk” or is it the third and “Charade at Sea” is the second? Oh well, no matter what the order, pick up one today. You won’t be disappointed!

See you in a few days and until then…HUGS!

Review for “Crushed Velvet”

Last year I won a paperback copy of, “Crushed Velvet” by Diane Vallere and last week I finally got around to reading it.

Polyester Monroe has inherited her grandparents fabric store. Getting ready for the grand re-opening Poly, as she is known, has Phil Girard pick up some bolts of velvet that she has had specially made. But when her delivery gets there Phil isn’t the driver and to her surprise she finds Phil dead in the back of the van under the heavy fabric bolts. Genevieve. Phil’s wife is the prime suspect and a friend of Poly’s. Will Poly be able to unravel the mystery and still open her shop on time?

I am giving “Crushed Velvet” a 4 star. I teetered back and forth on the rating from a 3 1/2 to a 4. The plot was good. I enjoyed the story. And for the most part it was well written, but…The details! There were details that just went on and on. Details that weren’t relevant to move the story forward.  Details that bogged down the story. One of the details that has stuck in my mind is about a pillow case. Now if the pillow case turned up missing or the suspect had drooled on it it her sleep and it was confiscated for a DNA sample I could see why the author might give it so much attention, but since it wasn’t relevant to the story I couldn’t care less about what color the flowers were, or if the edging was tatted or crocheted, etc.

Overall, it had some good twists and turns and like I said, I enjoyed the story, but if I was her editor I would have gotten rid of most of the unnecessary details.




I have a lot planned over the next few weeks. More reviews. An update to what I’ve been up to. And a special peek into what is coming up in the near future. So stay tuned and till then; HUGS!

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