Kids Say the Darndest Things (June 2021)

JACK: (flexing) I’m so strong, look at my elbows! 


In the bath.

CASEY: (points to the body wash) Okay. I’m ready for the slime!


JACK: Mom, ask me if whales are nice.

ME: Are Whales nice?

JACK: Yeah.

*No follow up context*



CASEY: Look Mommy I’m on the table. (starts dancing)

ME: What are you doing up there?

CASEY: Just bein’ myself.


Jack was taking very slow and loud breaths.

JACK: (whispers to himself) I’m doing such a good job breathing.



At my friend’s house, Casey asked for a slice of cheese. He was so insistent on it that my friend caved and let him have one. Then we watched as he put the slice of cheese on a scooter and gave it a ride around the apartment. He never ate it.


Jack kept asking me to wipe his butt for him. I explained to him that once he turned five, he would go to Kindergarten and he would have to wipe his butt all by himself. The next day, we heard him yell this from the bathroom.

JACK: Can someone wipe my bum!? I’m still four! I’m not five yet!


I was outside when a breeze sounded off some wind chimes nearby.

CASEY: (excited) Mommy, do you hear that magic?


JACK: I had a dream I was at a party and there was a fire! I turned into a fire truck and put out the fire!

ME: That’s great, buddy! Good job!

JACK: …

ME: …

JACK: I wet the bed.

Three Things You Didn’t Know About Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

A long time ago, toward the beginning of the 2020 quarantine, I posted this joke:

And well YOU ASKED FOR IT.

So here are my top three break-down theories on Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. (Spoilers. But if you haven’t seen this movie yet, I really don’t know what you’re waiting for)

1 Cameron Fry is the protagonist. Ferris Bueller is the narrator

The last time I watched this movie, I thought to myself, “This would make an excellent YA novel from the point of view of Cameron Fry.” That’s when the dynamic really became clear. This movie is Cameron’s story. Not Ferris’.

At the beginning of the movie, we see Ferris Bueller… super cool, untouchable, clever, and mischievous. And at the end of the movie, we see Ferris Bueller… super cool, untouchable, clever, and mischievous. He remains constant throughout the movie, he doesn’t have an arc. He doesn’t change. And he’s not supposed to! He acts as a constant change agent that shapes all the other characters around him. (More on that in point two).

In the contrast, we see Cameron at the beginning of the movie- sick, miserable, “not dying, just can’t think of anything good to do”. The character has a problem to be solved, like all good and compelling protagonists. He’s about to make a change. It’s The Hero’s Journey. He’s had the literal “call to adventure” and is now being forced out of his comfort zone into this crazy escapade with his best friend.

It’s not even Ferris’ DAY OFF, if you think about it. Ferris has already missed school nine times up to this point. This is Cameron’s Day Off.

Ferris is the narrator for Cameron’s story. Even stylistically, he breaks the fourth wall to look into the camera and address the audience directly. If you still don’t believe Cameron is the main character, consider this: Ferris doesn’t talk about the other characters. He’s not telling you how he met Sloane. Hardly the only thing he says about Jeanie is that she got a car and he didn’t. Throughout the movie, he tells the audience about Cameron. His cold relationships with his parents, his character flaws. Cameron Fry is the focus because he is about to make the biggest change (AKA protagonist)

2. Ferris helps the characters grow up not down

At a quick glance, you might think that Ferris is encouraging his friends to go off on a childish adventure. But he’s not. He’s forcing them to challenge authority and assume their own identities as adults. They’re not skipping school to go to the local arcade (which is what Rooney thinks they’re doing). He’s taking them to art museums, fine restaurants, and even the stock exchange. At every moment he’s challenging them to give up their passive childhood for an independent adulthood. Even Sloane is challenged by Ferris in this way when he asks her if she wants to get married.

It’s not about the irresponsibility, although he knows how to do that well. As the active change agent in the story he has a motive for each person. For example, it’s not about stealing the car, he’s getting Cameron to challenge his father.

In the B story, Jeanie is also forced to change in this way. She constantly gripes and moans about having no control in her life (If I was BLEEDING out my eyes you’d still make me go to school). Then after a therapeutic conversation with Charlie Sheen, she has FERRIS busting his a$$ to beat her home and SHE is the one to save him from Rooney. In parellel to Cameron’s story, she takes back her control.

3. Ferris Bueller is actually John Lennon

You really think I could go one blog post without mentioning this guy??

Okay but this is FOR REAL. I know a fellow Lennon-obsessed writer when I see one. And Hughes no-doubt-in-my-mind modeled Ferris Bueller after John Lennon. He basically tells us upfront.

Ferris first directly name drops Lennon to the audience, by quoting; “I don’t believe in Beatles, I just believe in me.” Then he tells us, “I could be The Walrus.”

Ferris spends the movie as the leader, challenging authority and encouraging mischief and mayhem a la “A Hard Day’s Night”. Hughes even recreated the same shot of them jumping in slow motion with their arms raised.

Then of course to cap it all off. He lip syncs to Twist and Shout on the parade float. And I really don’t know how you can get anymore obvious than that.

If you don’t believe that Hughes would go to such lengths to model a character after Lennon, consider The Breakfast Club, when the janitor readily admits that he wanted to “grow up and become John Lennon”. Or when Brian the Brain whispers to himself about being The Walrus.

At the very end of the film, Ferris leans back in his hands and says the classic line, “Life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop and look around once and a while you could miss it.”

…Which is supposedly a derivative of this quote…

BONUS!

I truly feel that I would be amiss to not lead you into this excellent conspiracy theory from the inner depth of Redditt. The theory is that Ferris is actually a figment of Cameron’s imagination. It’s a more compelling theory than you would think! I’ll leave the video here, so you can have your mind blown.

Quick Writing Update

Hey guys. Here’s a stream of consciousness writing update.

It’s really hard to stay motivated sometimes.

In May I took a break from writing for two weeks because we had friends and family in town and now I’m really struggling to jump back into it. My Beatles book has only been querying for a few months but the rejections (although an important part of the process) can be hard hits sometimes.

Not only that but I discovered that Disney Hyperion picked up a series a similar idea as the one that I’m currently working on. I don’t know if that means the market is good for mine, or if I’m SOL. Now, I’m trying to shape this book into something that can stand on it’s own two feet. It’s different enough that I’m confident to finish, but still feeling that pressure knowing I’m going to have competition right out of the gate.

I’ve just been thinking about the back end of publishing too hard and it’s effecting my art. I don’t want to write for a publisher. I want to write for me. But then, can I really feel successful even if nothing happens with my writing? I’d like to think that I would. My bookcase is already filling with manuscripts faster than I thought it would. Soon I’ll have an entire shelf of my own completed work. But still would be nice to share some of these stories with you guys.

My electrician surprised me the other day by asking me all about my writing. When he asked me if I could send him the link to “my shop” I sheepishly gave him the name of the anthology I was published in three years ago. People asking where they can buy my work is happening a lot more often. I’ve always considered at some point self publishing. Even for curiosity sakes.

I told my critique partner that if I were ever to self publish Love Me Do, it would do the absolute best as a radio-play type audiobook. I envision this as being it’s highest and most entertaining form. There’s a lot of music in it; Beatles, 50s, and even new, original songs. I think being able to hear the quips from a Lennon impersonator would be fabulous. I could do the narration and the main character Em. That really wouldn’t intimidate me. But anyway, not to get your hopes up about it, because to be able to bring exactly what I imagine to light would cost a lot in production. I would have to find some bang up impersonators AND an impersonator band. Figure out copyright and legality. All the actors and sound production and music to mix. It would just be a lot. Even though that’s probably the best form this story could take.

I wanted to cheer myself up, so I had a graphic designer help me with a book cover. Not for any other reason than to put the thing on my shelf and feel better about the hard two years that went into it.

Thanks for hanging in there with me. I’m sure it’s not fun hearing about projects that are not available to read. I’ve had a lot of brainstorming over this blog and well, about you guys! I’ve been playing with some ideas. Ways to bring you into my writing world a lot more! A fun community to build!

So that’s all I want to say I guess, is thank you from my inky writerly heart for supporting me and reading what I have to say and letting me have a voice. I love you guys.

My Kids Say the Darndest Things (May 2021)

Hi everyone! Quick apology, May turned out to be a crazy busy month for me. But I know how much some of you like these posts and I didn’t want to disappoint. Here are some of the cutest things my kids have said in the month of May.


I opened a package of raw ground beef and Jack asked

JACK: Are we having brains for dinner?


CASEY: (excitedly pointing to a ladder) Look!! The letter ‘H’!


Jack has been regularly playing Plants and Zombies. On the roof level, there’s a giant zombie that attacks by throwing a smaller zombie riding on his back. My husband said that when Jack first saw it, he said:

JACK: Look, he throwed his sweetie.


Casey consistently says “laugh” instead of “lap”

CASEY: I wanna sit in Mommy’s laugh.


We went to a small amusement park that had a merry-go-round (one of Jack’s favorite things) with a rainbow colored top. When he saw it, he excitedly announced:

JACK: No way! It’s a rainbow-go-round!!


Both of my kids have started calling fish-sticks “fish-dogs” and I’m not correcting them.


JACK: What’s this spot on your arm?

ME: A freckle.

JACK: A f**kle?

ME: NO! A frrrreckle

JACK: … A f**kle?


Casey and Jack got into a fight and in all sincerity my two-year-old yelled at his brother:

CASEY: You naughty bird!


JACK: Can I get a birthday cake at the store so I can turn five and go to kindergarten?

ME: … it’s not like the Sims.

My Kids Say the Darndest Things (April 2021)

JACK: (stretches his shirt out for Dan to see) What does this shirt say?

DAN: (reading) “My brother is awesome”

JACK: (skeptical face) … Is this Casey’s shirt?


Casey puts on daddy’s shoes.

CASEY: Byeeeee! See you tomorrow!

Shuffles to the door.

CASEY: (quietly to himself) I’m a grown up.

CASEY: (holding a bell pepper) It’s an apple!

JACK: No, it’s a pepper-mint!


CASEY: (points to my gross mom bun on my head) I like your ice cream, Mommy.


CASEY: I can’t reach the sun! I want to grab the sun! *grunting and stretching* It’s too tall in the sky!


JACK: (lovingly brushes my hair off my forehead) You’re hair is slipping on your brain a lil bit.

CASEY: (stops and sniffs a flower) Mmm! So smelly!


JACK: (looking into my eyes) Wow, your eyes are so green. They’re like circle flowers in there. They’re so cool

2021 Resolutions Update: Spring

Well, we’re a quarter of the way done with 2021 if you can freaking believe that. So it’s time to look back and (yikes) see how I’ve been doing with the goals I made at the beginning of the year:

MAKE A LIST OF THINGS TO PUT TOGETHER IN THE NEW HOUSE; DO SOME OF THE THINGS

I’ve made the giant comprehensive list and I’ve done some things! It’s still going slower than I would prefer but at least some of it has gotten done. In my last post, I said I was going to work on a room at a time. But I discovered that that method is not as efficient as I originally thought. A lot of the things on the list were easier to do in batches, like doing ONE big Amazon purchase or dusting ALL the ceiling fans in the house. But I figure as long as I’m crossing things off the list, that’s all that matters.

MAKE A HABIT OF STRETCHING EVERY DAY, SLOWLY BUILD UP A YOGA ROUTINE

So I really thought that this was going to be my failed goal. But I’m so proud to tell you that I’ve rocked this one! I was right when I said that ten minute stretching would feel doable in my daily schedule. And I was able to incorporate the Yoga right away! So I’m happy about this one.

CLEAN WHILE THE BOYS ARE IN THE BATH

When I originally came up with this idea, I seriously miscalculated how busy my husband’s schedule was going to be. We were able to pull this system off a lot of the time, but there were many nights were I was bathing the kids by myself. This is a two man goal haha! I’m going to hang on to this goal/idea for another few months because my husband’s schedule is supposed to clear up a little. We’ll see what the next update says.

WRITING WRITING EVERYWHERE

  1. I sent Love Me Do to the query trenches! Good for me… and also I need a hug.
  2. The paranormal thriller … soooooooo about that haha. I was fully planning on finishing the first draft of the thing sometime this year… until new shiny idea happened. And actually, technically it’s an “old shiny idea”. I’ve been dying to write this YA ever since I was a teenager myself and even started writing it several years ago!… Listen, don’t be upset. It’s still a thriller with paranormal elements… How about this, how about as long as I have SOME kind of a first draft by the end of this year. Um, that’s not impossible… is it??
  3. Blog once a week. Okay, I’ve been doing pretty well so far!
  4. Publish a short story. Ugh. I don’t know. I’m already emotionally drained just from anticipating my query rejections. Maybe, I’ll let this one go… maybe

So far, not terrible. I’ll let you know how things slip in July hahaha!

What You Can Expect From Season 2 of Ginny and Georgia

Disclaimer. I don’t work for Netflix (obviously), these are just my predictions based off of what they did with Season One. Second Disclaimer: SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS

GINNY IS GOING TO POETICALLY RUN INTO THE SAME MOTORCYCLE GANG AS HER MOM

I don’t know if she’ll *join* said Motorcycle gang. I think it’ll be a entire b story episode where they teach her to use a gun or something. And then when they’re all pressuring her at the end to join the gang, she’ll run away with an overlaying monologue about how “She’s not her mom.”

MARCUS IS GOING TO CHASE HIS MOTORCYCLE… I MEAN GINNY

Yeah so some characters will care more than others about runaway Ginny. Marcus will dramatically leave everything behind to find her because he’s soOoOO iN loVe.

TOP OF EPISODE ONE, GEORGIA IS GONNA KNOW SHE KNOWS

They left the poisonous flowers smoldering in the fireplace. I mean I don’t really know why else they would have dramatically blow torched them for any other reason than to have Georgia find them.

Georgia will chase Ginny and manipulate people along the way with that really uncomfortable smile that evokes Freaky Fred from Courage the Cowardly Dog.

Subscribe if I ain’t wrong.

PAUL IS GOING TO BE REVELEAD AS A FELLOW CRIMINAL

Remember when Paul proposed and was yelling gruffly at her that they both needed power. LOLOLOL if that ain’t sus I don’t know what. He also had such a nonreaction about the embezzling accusation that that makes me think we’ll discover that he was the one who paid it off and probs embezzles too.

He’ll team up with Georgia and use his power as mayor to do a bunch of sketchy things.

ZION IS GOING TO HAVE A “SHOCKING” DEATH (SORRY GUYS)

From four miles away, I can smell a character who is too-pure-to-not-be-a-plot-motivating-death. He’s probably going to die doing some noble thing like telling Ginny to return to Pumpkin Spice Land or saving her or something. But don’t feel too bad, because Ginny will discover his unpublished manuscript and then he’ll become this soft voice-over narrator throughout the rest of the season.

WE’LL DISCOVER THAT GEORGIA HAS KILLED MORE PEOPLE

Prepare to be hooked by more of Georgia’s backstory and wade through hours of Ginny cry-yelling at her friends to see more flashbacks.

HUNTER IS GOING TO BE OUTED AS GAY

Okay I know they’re probably not going to actually do this… but doesn’t this make some damn sense. Remember when they had that whole scene about how “he hadn’t grabbed her boob yet”. Think about it. Think about his cute lil tap dance in the halls. He never actually sang her name in the song he wrote… what if that crap is about Brody? Maybe that’s why he ALWAYS hangs around him instead of alone with Ginny. Amirite or amirite??

I think he’s closeted because of the high expectations of his cold weird mom who literally only cares about his college application for some reason. And I also think this is going to be a storyline because Georgia and Ginny tries to cover every single teen issue they can possibly think of and no one’s been hiding their sexuality yet.

NORA IS ACTUALLY GOING TO GET A STORYLINE AND IT’S GOING TO BE A HOT TEEN ISSUE™

NICK IS GOING TO DISCOVER HIS BF IS AN UNDERCOVER PI

I don’t know why but I imagine a scenario where Nick catches him in a lie, thinks he’s cheating and goes through his phone. I also imagine that out of PURE SPITE, he’s gonna cover for Georgia or lead his BF to a red herring.

Just sayin’, but that episode where he shows up at the birthday part in drag. He looked exactly like me.

Subscribe if I ain’t wrong.

That Time I Embarrassed the Whole Human Race

Here’s an embarrassing story,

So this one night, Dan and I were getting ready for bed and both boys were asleep. It was… maybe around midnight? I don’t remember the exact time, but I remember it was late because Dan and I were binging Hoarders and we both agreed that she shouldn’t have watched the last episode and were about to be exhausted the next day.

Anyway, it was late.

So I’m doing the nightly routine, I’m brushing my teeth, taking out my contacts, etc. etc. And I heard a familiar sound coming from the hallway outside of my bedroom. The sound that parents most dread in the middle of the night. The pitter patter of little feet. I was trying to make Dan go check instead of me. But he had ALSO taken his contacts out and is conveniently more blind than me, so it was my turn to do the dirty deed. I crossed my fingers and hoped that no one was sick and that this would be the only waking instance for the night.

I went into the hallway and it was kind of dim… but I could make out the outline of one of the kids. But they look so dang similar I wasn’t sure which one. Plus I had my contacts out, so I had to squint really hard as I inched closer.

And then I realized… this was not actually one of my kids in green pajamas… this was a teeny tiny green man.

I was like Okay… what in the actual H-E-double-hockey-sticks am I looking at here?? I blinked a couple of times. As if that would help. Eyes not working? Have you tried turning them off and on? That wouldn’t have worked for blind-as-a-bat Dan, he would’ve picked up whatever it was and put it in one of our kid’s beds.

So I’m face to face with this… whatever it is. I’m guessing a toy. But I had heard the footsteps. Distinctly childlike footsteps. So I get closer to the green thing, trying to see if my child is hiding behind it or something.

AND THE GREEN THING TALKS.

I jumped so freaking high it’s a wonder why I wasn’t immediately drafted into the WMBA.

“Hello?” Don’t know why I said that, I mean clearly it was a toy.

“Take me to your leader,” it responded.

Okaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyy so obviously this was a weird ate-cheese-before-bed kind of dream.

“Take me to your leader.”

So after a a failed attempt at slowing my heart rate I was like, “Okay… so that’s gonna be hard to do…”

“Why?” it asked.

“Because, well, first off… there’s not exactly a ‘leader of Earth’. There are hundreds of leaders of different parts of the world.”

The little green man rubbed it’s chin and went, “So it’s compartmentalized? Like a mini-mall?”

“Wut?”

“Take me to the leader of this room.”

I blinked rapidly because OKAY WHAT EXACTLY WAS HAPPENING HERE. Finally I shook my head and was like, “Uh… okay… sorry, I was not prepared to have an encounter with an extra-terrestrial today.”

His jaw dropped and he slapped his hand on his chest. “You can’t say that! That’s an extremely offensive term to my people!”

“Oh sorry, sorry, sorry!! I’m not accustomed with Martian culture.”

“We’re not even FROM Mars! Wow. WOW.”

And then I watched him teleport onto my front lawn where he started recording a rant video about me on his smart phone.

Sooooo… if an intergalactic war starts… That was my bad guys.

My Kids Say the Darndest Things (March 2021)

Casey had a fever. So I brought down our no-touch thermometer (best pandemic purchase ever). The only set back is the kids loooooove to play with it, so as soon as Casey saw it he demanded he take his own temperature. I let him hold onto it and went off to get the Tylenol. When I returned I heard him talking to the thermometer in his hands, “Hello, temperature. Do you want to play?” And then he replied to himself in a high pitched voice, “Yes.”

We bought a Roomba. (Second best pandemic purchase ever) At first, Casey told me he was “scared the robot”, but he warmed up quickly. Now he follows it around and makes kissy sounds and telling it to “come”. “Come, robot.” Then he announces to me that the robot is named George and George is his friend.

I told Jack to blow a feather off my finger and make a wish. He squeezed his eyes shut and whispered to himself, “I wish for a pink unicorn.”

One night it was really windy and Dan had left the window open in his office the slightest crack. Every time the wind blew through the window it would howl loudly. Well, I didn’t explain to the boys what the sound was… so they decided on their own that it was because there was “an owl” in the house. They were both ABSOLUTELY convinced that there was an owl inside hooting loudly and walked around trying to find it.

*Jack’s stomach gurgles loudly*

ME: Oh, are you digesting?

JACK: I not ‘gestin. I’m Jack!


Casey biting into an uncooked macaroni: “Ooh, this is a yucky rainbow.”

JACK: Moooooooom, get me some juice.

ME: Nuh-uh, mister. You need to use the magic word.

JACK: (in all sincerity) … “chicken”?

ME: “Please”.

JACK: Ohhhhhhhhh.

ME: *after cleaning the kitchen* Wow. Okay. That was a lot of hard work!

JACK: Yeah, it was! You do a lot of hard work, Mom. Good job for doing that hard work!

ME: *trying not to cry*

I CAN’T BELIEVE I FINISHED THE BOOK!

My heart is so full right now. I am thrilled beyond belief to announce that I have finished all the edits on my Beatles time travel book! If you’ve been following along at all, then you know I have been pouring my soul into this project, off and on for the past two years. Typing ‘The End’ feels both relieving and a little sad haha (which I did NOT expect to feel that way).

There are just SO many people that I need to thank for the completion of this book:

DAN for enduring the countless hours of my absence

MY KIDS for playing quietly on occasion and allowing Mommy “book time”.

MY MOM for calling me early in the morning just to demand to know what happens in the next chapter. (Making me feel like maybe this book isn’t the worst thing in the world!)

MY CP MERRILL for all the feedback, creative insight, advice and emotional support

LIZETHE and STORMIE for being terrific invested beta readers and encouraging me through the drudgery of editing

TAYLOR for watching my kids a couple of times so I could write

KATE FRIDRICKS for being my Liverpudlian eyes and ears and teaching me all things Scouse.

The wonderful BILL HARRY for being very, very kind and answering the oddest questions, sending his articles my way and sharing his incredibly precious memories of John Lennon.

JOHN, of course, for being such a freaking interesting and dynamic person to write about

And EVERYONE for their support, related memes, interest of any kind, reading this blog post lol

So I’ve already started the query process (aaaaaaaah). I don’t really know what will come of it, but it feels good to have another manuscript completed and on my shelf.