Archive for the ‘Family & Friends’ Category

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Enjoying the In-Between

The first draft of HONOR AND GLORY is with my editor at Grand Central and I’m waiting for her revision notes. It’s a pleasant change not to be worried about a deadline at the moment, though having a line in the sand helps me be productive. Inside me there’s still a fourth grader who wants to please her teacher.


But for the next few days, I can wake up slowly and think about the day ahead.



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Idyllwild

My hero and I just got home from a getaway to Idyllwild, a mountain community about two hours from San Diego. It had been almost ten years since our last visit to an inn where we’d enjoyed a couple of great weekends, and when I made the reservations, I didn’t know what to expect. Of course, I went online, and was pleased to see that the place looked about the same: a line of handsomely designed “cabins” along a rushing creek. But a mouse-smelling cabin with knot holes in the floor can look fairy tale charming on-screen, so I was ready to be disappointed. What a wonderful surprise to discover that the inn is not only as comfortable and welcoming as it used to be but even more so.


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Thanksgiving 2011

Thanksgiving was great! Hope yours was too.


For many years I cooked for the crowd but a few years ago my sister and I switched so now we all go to her house for the yearly November feast. Last year we had ham but this year she went traditional with turkey and all the trimmings which in this case meant Rocky brought carrots he’d done something orangey with and Nikki made the salad. It’s not traditional to have salad at Thanksgiving but in our family we’re big on greens.


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4th of July

I have wonderful Fourth of July memories going back to being eight or nine years old when my family began going to what became a yearly party at a house with a kidney shaped pool and a view up the Peninsula to San Francisco. Here’s what I remember about those parties: The grownups drank beer and gin fizzes. Boy-catcher salad made with fruit and marshmallows and coconut. Staying in the pool three hours straight. No sun screen. Boys doing belly flops. Girls counting how many times we could do backward somersaults and pointing our toes like ballerinas. Scorched skins and stinging eyes.


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A Great Weekend!

I should be working on the proposal for my new book. But I keep being distracted by thoughts of what a good weekend we had.


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The Nuclear Threat

Just before the Cold War thawed, it got very cold indeed. An article appeared in the paper about what parts of southern California were likely targets for a nuclear attack. The accompanying map showed an intersection less than five miles from our house.  After that, I could not stop thinking about my sons dying in a nuclear attack and finally, to deal with my obsession, I became involved with a group planning to protest the production of Cruise Missiles in a General Dynamics plant.  This was also not far from our home.


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Old Friends

I just finished a long and then very long email to a friend from college, a woman I see maybe once every five years and with whom I correspond maybe twice a year.  As I was writing, I found myself speaking more candidly than I would to most people. I started to remember what she looked like at twenty, the way her hair was always a dark, smooth and shiny cap while mine was mouse-brown, curly and untidy. Her smile was beautiful and still is. I was good at smiling so I didn’t envy her that. But the hair, the hair! And guess what? She still has it and I’m still envious!


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The Things that Cover our Toes

According to statisticians with nothing better to do with their time, between 2004 and 2005 American women spent 17 billion dollars on shoes.


Imelda Marcos, widow of a Philippine dictator had 12,000 pairs at the time she was run out of the presidential palace.


What is it with women and shoes?


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Postpartum Depression

I’m going through a kind of postpartum depression now.


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Launching The Good Sister

Well, there’s nothing I can do about it now. The time for alterations and refinements has passed. THE GOOD SISTER has stepped into the world for all to see and read and talk about and must now float, fly, skid, sink or swim on its own merits. How do I feel about this? Well, anyone who’s had a child go off to college in a distant, dangerous city can probably approximate the emotions: excitement, anxiety, satisfaction, hope, thrill, worry. In the case of this book which was so exhausting to write, I’m relieved and a little bit amazed that I survived the experience.


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