• The Lily Cafe Digest #8 - take a look at what I've posted and posts from other bloggers that I've enjoyed

    The Lily Cafe Digest #8

    Well, that was fast. My first blogging break of the year is here. I contemplated whether I should continue to take breaks every 6 or so weeks and decided that, yes, I should. Not only do they give me a bit of breathing space, but it gives me time to really turn my focus back to my family. Also, as an introvert, interacting with people, even if it’s over the Internet, is exhausting and I really need to recharge. The most important thing I learned I needed to do was to just take some time to pause, to stop, to come to a standstill so I can look back and…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, part 19 - a work in progress inspired by Beauty and the Beast

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 19

    (Chapter 8 continued) “I may have lost my wife three years ago, but I remember how we came to be together. Ah, what a beautiful woman. She was my best friend for years before I ever kissed her. I had always thought love at first sight was a powerful thing. She showed me how love from friendship can be just as or more powerful.” “I don’t remember how to make friends,” Robert said softly, his eyes lowering so he only saw dirt. Brown. More brown. A reminder of how dull his life was, perhaps? Maybe it was time to repaint his study. “I haven’t had to worry about making friends…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, part 18 - a work in progress inspired by Beauty and the Beast

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 18

    Chapter Eight Hazel was a quiet soul. She wasn’t one for small talk. It was hard to get to know her at first, but, once we hit on something we had in common, it was hard to shut her up. I sometimes wished I had let her be in her quiet little world. My ears would have thanked me. Still, she was quite knowledgeable on gardening and helped create the herb garden. I planted the Peace rose in her honor, because that’s all I wanted after she left. Robert tugged at a particularly stubborn weed, wondering how he had missed the nearly two foot tall thing until it had reached…

  • The Lily Cafe Digest #7

    The Lily Cafe Digest #7

    It’s that time again! Time for a break. Since my son will be off from school for the next 3 weeks, I’ll be taking the time off as well. Once again, this Digest comes at the start of my break, so I hope you understand why I’m not allowing comments. I don’t plan to be anywhere near WordPress for the next 2 weeks, though I’ll be around to write my upcoming posts during the third week, so I may stop in and say hi. My last break came after 9 weeks of blogging, so I was a little caught off guard when the past 3 weeks just sped by. In…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 17 - a story inspired by Beauty and the Beast

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 17

    (Chapter 7 continued) “I’ve heard you dated Bradley Hunter,” Rose said abruptly, flatly. Startled, Elaina lifted her eyes from where she was watching Clarice stick pins near her waist. “Yes, I did. For two years.” “Missed the lifestyle of the wealthy, did you?” “No,” Elaina said, almost too fast. “Not at all. I like a quiet life.” “And yet here you are, companion to my son, the heir to the largest fortune around.” “It was neither my intention nor my idea. My friends thought I needed a diversion from job hunting, so talked me into joining them yesterday. I never thought Robert would choose me.” “Yet he did.” Elaina had…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 16 - a story inspired by Beauty and the Beast

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 16

    (Chapter 7 continued) It was so fast that Elaina had to stifle another gasp as her feet suddenly kicked into gear. Her heart was thudding and her stomach was doing uncomfortable loops. She hadn’t expected to be alone in Rose’s presence so soon. What was it that Robert had to do? Rose walked quickly. She faced forward, trusting Elaina to scurry after her. The only parts of her that seemed to actually move were her legs and feet. Her neck and torso didn’t even bend a millimeter as they descended a staircase. They stopped abruptly at a mahogany door. Without ceremony, or even acknowledging Elaina’s presence, she opened the door…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 15

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 15

    Chapter Seven Celeste was a mistake. She was pretty, but vapid. She also had a lot in common with a leech. Oh, she didn’t suck blood, but she sucked energy. Sucked it right out of me. After a week I was running for hiding places as soon as I woke up. It’s a good thing my mother scared her out of her wits one day. I don’t think I ever saw her run that fast. I must admit I chuckled while planting the White Cloud climbing rose. Elaina was certain that, had she been alone, she would have fallen to her knees and wept right there in the middle of…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 14

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 14

    (Chapter 6 continued) Robert smiled at her as he went to grab a pastry. “Congratulations. You survived meeting my mother. And you must have made an impression on her. She usually lingers, just to make my companion nervous.” Elaina smiled faintly, dipping a silver spoon into the parfait glass she had claimed. “You said she’s unpredictable.” “I did,” he acknowledged, “but this is the first time she’s only stayed for a few minutes. The first time in eight years.” Elaina shrugged. “Maybe she’s keeping things interesting for herself.” Robert offered her a faint smile as they finished their breakfast. Unlike the evening before, he was quite taciturn, seemingly lost in…

  • Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 13

    Queen of the Garden of Girls, Part 13

    (Chapter 6 continued) Robert laughed as he held out a chair to her, the one facing the door. “My mother’s idea. The women usually expect the grand dining room with the mile long table, extravagant foods, and servers at five foot intervals. This is her way of bringing them down a notch.” Elaina raised a brow as he sat across from her. “If you ask me, that sounds smart. After all, we’re here to keep you company, not bask in the throes of luxury.” He paused as he unfolded the simple paper napkin. “You and my mother might have more in common than we think.” He gave her a wry…

  • Doing National Novel Writing Month my own way

    NaNo My Way

    I’m a reader and a writer. Or should that be a writer and a reader? My mom tells me I fell in love with books before I could read and that I used to sit outside and tell myself stories when I was 2, so it’s hard to know which one came first. But reading and writing so often go hand in hand. Every time I read a book, ten ideas manifest in my head.¬†Someone help me… I discovered National Novel Writing Month in 2007, when I was bored while studying abroad in Denmark because I did not relish wandering alone outside in the dark at 5pm. I needed something…