Y'all come on in!

Y'all come on in!

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Dallas Morning News...


Look what was in the Dallas Morning News today...

Romance authors Lorraine Heath, Carolyn Brown, Becky Wade, Patricia Burroughs, Leann Harris, Lauren Canan, Janis Susan May, Kim Redford, JD Tyler, Vicki Batman, Tessa Gray, Carolyn Rae and Becki Stevenson will discuss their works from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Bonham Public Library, 305 E. 5th St., Bonham.


I will be talking about, promoting and signing
Wild Cowboy Ways and The Wedding Pearls at this event.
All the proceeds from my sales will go to the Bonham Library Fund.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Pearl Snap Shirts...

I've mentioned before that when we moved into this house in 1979 we had moved 21 times in our 13 years of marriage. Every single time we moved I cleaned closets as well as the whole house in the house we were moving out of. I cleaned closets and the whole house before we moved into the new one.

By the time we'd moved about 19 times I was tired of moving things we hadn't used in more than a decade so the garbage man and I worked up a relationship. I threw it into the dumpster on the night before he came around to collect the stuff on our street. That way it was never there long enough for Mr. B to run out there and take it all back into the house.

It's not his fault. He comes from a long line of hoarders. I did not realize how deep the hoarding DNA was until we had to move his mother out of a two story, full attic and basement house and into something smaller with no attic and no basement.

But back to that 19th move...Mr. B had brought home two pearl snap shirts when he was discharged from the Army many years before. And they had been packed and moved, unpacked, washed and ironed and hung in the closet until time to move again. They were yellowed around the cuffs and neck and didn't even fit him any more. So the night before the garbage man made his rounds which was also the night before we were to move the next day, those pearl snap shirts went to the dumpster.

Now fast forward ahead about three years and two moves later. He came out of the bedroom with this quizzical expression on his face and said, "Where are those pearl snap shirts I brought home from the Army. I want to wear one tomorrow."

"One," I held up a finger. "They don't fit you anymore. Southern cookin' has put pounds on you, darlin' and they were too little." I held up another finger. "And two, you haven't worn them in years." Third finger. "And three, I threw them away."

He tore out the back door toward the dumpster at the back of our lot, yelling that those were his best shirts, that they did fit him and that he did wear them often.

He made it about half way to the dumpster before I hollered, "Darlin', I threw them away three years ago!"

I do believe that all the hoarding husbands marched on City Hall when the wives were out shopping because not long after that, the city decided to do away with the big dumpsters and start using poly carts.

That was a sad day!!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Strange Noises...

More than thirty years ago we moved into this house and it came complete with appliances. The next year the old brown refrigerator started making thumping noises when the motor came on and went off but we used the thing right up to the time it died. We put it on the curb and some folks who sell junk hauled it right off for us.

The next refrigerator was white and it lasted quite a number of years before it started making noises. We knew it was going the way of the old brown one before long so we started saving our quarters and praying that the current one did not go before the jar was full.

Last week I was busy writing and I heard an old familiar noise. I knew that sound. I'd heard it before. It might last another six months but any more than that would be a miracle. It might even be magic.

I got out the big pickle jar and put the first quarter in it.

End of story?

Oh, no! One prepares for the death of a refrigerator. The junk people who take it off the curb might open the doors just to see if we left a jar of picante or perchance a stick of butter in behind one of those little flap door things. My Granny Chapman would talk to St. Peter about me ever getting past the front gates of heaven if I put a dirty refrigerator out on the curb with a FREE sign on the front.

Besides, it hadn't been cleaned out since Thanksgiving. Shhhh...I haven't let Granny on that bit of information yet. After all, she has a lot of responsibility up in heaven and I only talk to her occasionally and there's better things to visit about that the shelves in the 'fridge.

That shelf above the crisper drawers was not spick and span, pass the white glove test, clean. So this morning I thought that I'd take it out, spray a little cleaner on it and put it back. Nothing to it. Five minute job and I could go right back to my writing.

End of story?

Not yet! Someone--I'm not calling any names but if I find out which grandkid, they are in big trouble--spilled what looked like barbecue sauce in the refrigerator over Thanksgiving. They swiped it off the shelf but there it was on the very bottom of the 'fridge. Hot water didn't faze it! The roughest cleanser in the house did not touch it! The egg turner bent when I tried to scrape it out. I couldn't even cuss it off.

If they put cars together with that stuff we'd only have to buy one vehicle in our entire lives. Fender benders would be a thing of the past because nothing could dent a car made with three month old barbecue sauce.

Elbow grease came out along with a scratcher and lots of scouring powder. Finally, after an hour my refrigerator was clean enough to sit out on the curb. I'd even thrown out all the outdated salad dressing and jellies so no one was going to get an up close and personal visit with St. Peter because of food poisoning.

Granny would be so proud of me.

All day I've waited for the noise...all blasted day long. I cleaned it and it was ready for the curb. But now it has its second wind and is probably going to last another twenty years! It was probably that horrible stuff on the bottom shelf that caused it to almost go into refrigerator cardiac arrest.

When I started to make supper, the stove made a noise. I guess it thinks it deserves as much attention as the 'fridge. Too bad! I'll take it to the dump and forget about the curb. I've been eyeballing one of those with two ovens anyway and I hear Granny is in charge of choir practice for the next month!









Monday, January 25, 2016

My Muse Speaks...

Chester Fat Boy is my gray brindle cat who keeps me company when I write. He talks to me and I talk back to him. We carry on conversations even though he does not know People Talk and I'm not at all fluent in Cat Talk.

This past week he came into my office and told me something was wrong. I asked him if he wanted to sit in his window and watch the school traffic and he said something in Cat Talk that let me know that was not what he wanted at all.

"Do you want food?" I asked.

You do not ask a fat boy if he is hungry. Of course he wanted food and he was so happy that I opened up a can of his favorite chicken and tuna mixture with gravy. He settled down to eat and then came back to the office to talk some more.

"Do you want me to clean off the extra chair?"

He went back to the utility room and talked me into following him. His saucer was clean but maybe he was still hungry so I asked him again if he needed another half a can. He rubbed around my legs and I swear his answer was yes. So I gave him a little more and went back to the book I've been trying to get done by deadline time. In minutes he was beside my chair talking to me some more.

At this point, I told him he'd had plenty of food and he could take his normal morning nap and be a good muse. He finally crawled up on "his" chair and went to sleep. But the moment Mr. B came home from running errands, he ran into the utility room and did some more talking.

"Hey, Carolyn, there is a mouse in the house. Fat Boy says it is behind the washing machine," Mr. B yelled.

Now dear hearts, I can kill a spider. I'm not afraid of a snake and a hungry grizzly bear with an ingrown toe nail who'd just woke up and is starving does not scare me like a mouse. But sure enough there was a hole in the big bag of cat food not far from the washing machine which testified that there was a mouse in the house.

We caught the critter and his running buddy both and Fat Boy was content to sleep on his chair the next day. I bought him treats and told him that he was a good boy. And then I asked him why he'd taught Mr. B to understand Cat Talk when he never let me in on the secret.

He didn't answer. I think it's a conspiracy among the males who live in this house!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

BIG BOOK SALE...

TODAY ONLY

as part of the Kindle Daily Deal--

The entire five book Broken Road Series
(To Trust, To Dream, To Hope, To Believe, To Commit)

plus

A Forever Thing, In Shining Whatever, Violet's Wish, A Falling Star and The Ivy Tree are on sale for $1.99 each!

Sale ends at midnight!

http://www.amazon.com/b/?ie=UTF8&node=11552285011





Monday, January 18, 2016

CONTEST


Is it possible to have too many cowboys? Preorder your copy of Carolyn Brown's March release, One Texas Cowboy Too Many, and find out!
Follow the link below for... more information on how to receive a signed book plate and to be entered to win a gourmet chocolate bundle from premiere chocolatier Le Chocolat as well as a complete set of the Burnt Boot, Texas series.
The winner will be selected on Tuesday, March 1st.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1y1uiHE9v6RnsM2OFMKZ1-obNvgO_gdNVA9aVzs4efdI/viewform

HACKERS

I have been hacked. Let it be known that I hate hackers and am putting my worst curse upon all of them...beware ye hackers because someone is about to put habanero peppers in your Preparation H and if you are just a kid and don't use that then you will be visited by nightmares of someone plugging a USB into your brain and sucking all the knowledge from your head. You will awake thinking you are a skunk!

That said, I am not in Africa. My cousin, Julia, is on a cruise and not in Africa. I would not ask anyone for money if she got robbed in Africa. I would take care of it myself and never post such a thing.

That also said, if anyone of my friends, family and fans would like to be reinstated on my FB page as a friend, please send a request and I will accept. If you are the hacker, you might want to steer clear of me for a while. My blood pressure is up and I got a new pink pistol with a laser scope for Christmas that shoots five shots!


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Ladies Only...

I read an article a few weeks ago about four women who went on a ladies' only vacation...no husband, no kids, no dogs.

It sounded wonderful from beginning to end until I realized the author of the article forgot to tell "the rest of the story."

In reality this is the way the whole thing probably went...

Wife comes home and tells husband that she and her three friends had a lovely hour long lunch and decided that they are going to use their vacation time to go to the mounts for a week of pure luxury. All he has to do that week is keep the house in running order, the children bathed, clothed and fed and taken to school on time every morning and to violin practice, cheerleader practice, football games and make sure their homework was done every night. Oh, and he should keep the check book in perfect balance and don't forget the dog likes that new food that's only available at the vet and be sure to scoop the kitty litter once a day.

Then she tells her children, "Mommy is going away for a week with her friends. Daddy is going to take care of you while I'm gone and you will have some quality bonding time with him."

Husband thinks that she's crazy. Who would want to go on a trip with three gossiping, whining women when she could wait until summer and take a real vacation to an amusement park. But if she's got her mind set then he'll show her that the Superman cape fits him even better than that Superwoman cape she's always bragging about wearing. He'll show her that she's not even missed.

"Don't call me when you are five hundred miles down the road and have a flat tire or when you are homesick for the kids," he says emphatically.

She packs her favorite sneakers and hot tub attire in her suitcase and leaves her kids, dog, cat, husband and guilty conscience all at home.

Through the week she shops as long as she wants--no husband standing breathing down her neck and checking his watch every three seconds or kids tugging on her coattails, whining about how long they had to stay in this store and when could they go to the toy store.

She eats what she wants and where she wants. She might have a candy bar and a diet cola while she soaks I the hot tub and reads a trashy novel. Or she might have spinach quiche or marinated vegetables and chicken breasts smothered in mushrooms in a little cafĂ© with dripping candles on the table.

She does not think about hot dogs with chili at the fast food place, kid's lunches or homework all week. At the end of which, she walks in the door of her home, rested and revived.

And that's where the rest of the story comes into play.

She gags as she drops her suitcase in the living room floor. When she locates the horrid smell, it's just an overflowing trash can that has not been emptied in a week. The checkbook is lying on the table and a quick glance says that she will have to hock the dog, the cat and half the kids to get it out of the red. The children look like someone rescued them from the inside of a dumpster but they declare that Daddy made them take at least one bath that week. Laundry is knee deep to a tall Swede and she needs a scoop shovel to start cleaning house.

And how did every dish in the house get dirty when the family ate burgers and fries at the Dairy Dip every night? The dog is anorexic and the cat stopped using the litter pan and has started digging holes in the tropical plant pot.

Now that is the real story and I bet dollars to cow patties there was never a follow up story about those four friends going on a second vacation together.

The amusement park never looked so good!

Friday, January 8, 2016

And the winners are...

The winners have been chosen for a white gold and diamond necklace celebrating Wild Cowboy Ways and the pearl and diamond necklace celebrating The Wedding Pearls. To everyone who signed up for my newsletter or sent in a proof of copy for a preorder, thank you. The outpouring of support from my awesome readers was totally amazing and once again I can stand on the roof tops and shout to the world that I have the best fans in the universe. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart!


The winner of this lovely little necklace...drum roll please! Very good. I heard that loud and clear all the way to southern Oklahoma! The winner is Jackie Baker!






And the winner of this pearl and diamond necklace...one more really loud drum roll please! Excellent job and hats off to the drummer. The winner is Cathy Genna!

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Spilt Milk...

I should have known when I posted that about the hotel not having Internet service that it was an omen of things to come. The beach was beautiful. There was only one cold day when the kids couldn't wear their bikinis and play in the outdoor pool or even wade in the ocean and that was the last day they were there so no complaints in that area. BUT the Internet service was absolutely horrible. I'd planned to throw a hissy on this site but other than the Internet the whole two weeks was amazing so I decided that maybe I'd best not cry over spilt milk.

So that said, I will move on and talk about a visit we had to an antique store many years ago, back before Internet and when phones still had a cord that went from the base to the receiver. Hey, how many of  you remember those soft padded things that you could stick to the back of the receiver and it would rest on your shoulder while you did the dishes or flipped through the new Sear's catalog?

Well, it was during those days and we'd finished the huge job of turning our garage into a living room, the living room into a dining room and knocking out walls so that those two plus the kitchen would then be a great room.

That was the day we discovered that we needed something to put the telephone on since it all had to be plugged it and we didn't have a thing to set it on in our brand new beautiful room--except the card board box the texturing mud came in.

Even then neither of us were able to plop down in the floor and visit on the phone. Well, we were able to plop down and stick the phone to our ear or prop it on our shoulder since my sister had gotten me a phone rest for Christmas, but it was the getting up that was the problem. There were just so many cranes in town and they were in constant demand.

We could find modern looking tables to put our phone on but none of those matched our early attic/rustic red neck theme we had going on in the new room so we went looking in antique shops.

We found a little brass topped table from the '50's in the first shop we visited and we didn't even have to take out a loan to buy the thing. But we'd had so much fun looking around for it that we decided to stop at a few more antique shops on the way home.

First stop was at an old motel that had been renovated and turned into an antique gallery. Rooms and rooms of old stuff that was totally priceless even if I didn't have a clue what some of it was. We looked at things that our ancestors pitched in the attic because it was outdated. I found a whole collection of drinking glasses that were priced at two bucks each--and they were empty!! My Poppa bought them for a quarter and they were filled to the brim with Levi Garrett snuff. But they are antiques now, right along with depression glass that they used to put in oatmeal and give away at carnivals.

In one place I recognized an old chrome kitchen table with a bright yellow top. My mother danced a jig when she got a new wood table and threw a yellow topped one just like that one in the back yard to use as a vegetable prep table. And to think my grandchildren will probably pawn their fancy phones to buy such an antique for their new apartments.

We left with our little brass topped telephone table that day but today I'm wondering about the antique shops in another twenty years...will they have lap tops with the original Internet service on it that you have to type in commands? And our grand children will shake their heads in wonder at such an "old" device. By then all they will have moved past the idea of speaking a command and presto, there it was on a little screen they held in their hand. They will be in the era when all they have to do is think the command and there it is on the screen which has been embedded in the back of their eyelids.

Crazy idea, huh? (Raising hand and standing up, here)

I, Carolyn Brown, said that computers would never be small enough to sit on a table top. I, Carolyn Brown, said that phones could never be carried around from room to room and out in the back yard and still hear the person on the other end. I, Carolyn Brown, said that old yellow topped chrome table was worthless and told Mama to throw it out in the back yard.

'Nuff said!

What have you said would never come to pass and it did?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Oops...

So I went on a little vacation with kids and grandkids. Had my blog posts all ready to enter and Internet was spotty. I'll be home tomorrow folks and will post pictures of the trip and tell you all about how frustrating it is NOT to have an Internet connection! LOL