Search This Blog

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Finally, my evil chicken hunting operation has a home

As seen coming into Seattle, my new metal chicken hunting lair. I took a photo myself but you could barely see it in the distance. Thanks for building it for me, Missile Defense Agency. Now I will be able to hunt chickens in style.

Chicken sighting!

This little bugger showed up at Caffe Cocina. I don't mean to alarm anyone, but these effers are everywhere! It might be part of some, great, nefarious plot. Keep your eyes open.

And so, I promise to hunt down the elusive metal chicken wherever I go. Laurel Pardee, Chicken Hunter.

You're welcome.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Mean Girls of the YMCA

Just when I thought that the Y couldn't get any more exciting... Mean Girls!

Okay, so there was only just one, but she really got my girls going. And my girls can spin, let me tell you, especially the 12 year old.

It's not that exciting of a tale, or coherent, but the nasty girl at the swimming pool definitely turned my day on its ear.

I think we can take her, though. Stay tuned.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Money Fight!

This morning I was searching on Amazon, trying to find my book using keywords. And, as usual, I was not having any success. My book is virtually impossible to find on Amazon. I am learning a definite lesson about titles, let me tell you.

But I digress. I searched under my name and found my kindle book, but what else I found was

Star-crossed: Secrets by LR Pardee (Paperback - 2011)
1 new from $137.17


Someone out there is trying to sell my book in paperback for $137.17?
I'm not sure if I should be flattered or horrified. Or enraged?

How much do I get of this 137 dollars... plus shipping.

And then there's the question of where did this copy come from? There are definitely hard copies of Star-crossed:Secrets out there. I gave them to lots of my friends. None in New Hampshire, though. But $137? I mean, you could actually buy a Kindle and buy my book on Kindle for less than $137. Hell, just ask me and I'll give you a copy for free!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

I got my own chicken now, B**ch!

And he's got a ski-do!

Alright! This is my side-splitting tale of how I got this insanely bizarre and totally impractical chicken (or seagull) and installed him on a ski-do... which is actually on wheels... Prepare for hilarity.

So, Roy verbally abused me and threatened my life and I went to an outlet mall and bought a seagull. And named him Justin Beiber. And put him on a ski-do. So he could sit in the park at Liberty Bay. And Roy shook his fist at me. And said, "Bam, Zoom, straight to the moon."

Yeah, that Blogess lady is still funnier than me.

But, really, this chicken/duck/seagull was sitting in Poulsbo Waterfront Park-- or whatever its new name is-- as we walk by with the dogs. You don't see that every day... especially since he is on a ski-do on wheels. When we come back around on our walk, this old couple is remote controlling him and using a relay to have him chat with children. And all I can say is, "don't follow that duck/chicken into a van, kiddies." Or a boat... even if it is a really nice one.

But weirder than the rich pedophiles, is the miles of plant/garland stuff that the Norwegian Mid-sommer celebrators have circled all around the park. The garland isn't weird. It's lovely. But on the garland, every five feet are signs that say "Danger. Stay off."

Ok, what kind of danger does a strand of garland pose? Is it electrified? Is it going to swoop up in a net and capture us all? Will knives shoot out of the pavilion if we step on it? It just leads me to question, what kind of effed up Viking terrorist celebration is this?"

And then I went home and had a drink.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Meet... my next 10 pounds

Once summer rolls around-- and I do recognize that it hasn't rolled our way yet-- I crave chips. In the winter I love the sweet but in the summer, it's the salty. Ok, it's also still the sweet. No carrot cravings for me, I'm sad to say.

Anyway, I have found the chip of the summer of '11. In case the photo didn't make it clear, Sun Chips Jalapeno Jack. I am literally obsessed with these chips. Could eat them all day.

And that was my product endorsement for the week. Eat them. Yum.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

It's madness!

Mostly I am posting to use this awesome photo. Those cats, they can sell anything.

But I can riff with this.

A week ago I sent in my Giant 6 month membership check to the new Y in Silverdale. Seemed like a no-brainer. The kids were out of school, here was a giant facility aimed at entertaining kids. Perfect match.

Wrong. And here's why:

1. I have lazy kids. And I say that with all due love and respect. My lovely daughters took one turn around the running track, glanced at the basketball court and said, "what else you got?" Yeah, my kids do pools, but this pool "is for babies". Sigh.

2. I am treating this Y membership like wristbands at the fair. As in "two more rides until we get our thirty dollars worth. No, I don't care if you are about to puke. Get on the Zipper!"

Yep, it's just like that. No matter how much my kids puke, we are going back to that Y.

No, not really. There has not been puking. But I definitely do the math every time we go there. And it is literally driving me insane. We are never going to visit the Y enough to get our money's worth. It's money given to the cosmos. Bye money.

And then I added a new brilliant factor to my calculations. If we don't to to the Y, we save $4 in gas. So the new calculus is the cost of the membership divided by visits per month, subtracting out the cost of saved gas. Or something like that. I'm not very mathy.

And you can see why I am going out of my mind. Perhaps I should stop researching marketing for my book and start researching mental health facilities.

Pardee Out.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The example I'm setting...

After 12 1/2 years, I have grown tired of telling my children what to do and watching them do something else. Or nothing. And so, I have decided to just lead by example and hope it turns them into valuable, or at least employable, members of society.

Let's see. What examples am I setting?

1. Read alot.

That's a good one. Reading is a worthy pastime. although I read lots of fluff, so perhaps it is not a good example.

2. Eat salad.

Yes. Very good. Yay me.

3. Swim.

Exercise good. I am three for three here.

4. Drink beer. Often.

Hmm. I might be losing traction.

5. Eat lots of chocolate.

Hell yeah. These kids will know what's important in life.

6. Only clean house when someone is coming over.

Yeah, that's kind of marginal.

7. Volunteer until it makes you crazy.

Yes, awesome. I am awesome. Unless I am sending the message that they should work for free. Gainful employement, girls, gainful. Either way it will make you crazy.

8. If people make you mad, swear about them.

Probably better than swearing at them. Or shooting them.

9. Be on the computer ALL THE TIME. Unless you are watching a movie.

Sure. Why not. By the time their my age, they'll probably have computers embedded in their heads.

10. Buy lots of expensive footwear and coats.

This is already biting me in the butt. I should do it more stealthily.

That about sums me up. So... I've got some pluses and minuses. What example are you setting?

Pardee Out.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Baby I was born this way

And apparently, so were my kids. Well, not the beer. But we are a family that loves to be in front of the computer. After one week they consider a trip to the Y child abuse.

Poor children.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Number... One... Dad

It's Go-Time, Butter Bean!

So, everyone who knows my dad knows that he is a wonderful, kind man. He also happens to be a great father.

But this is about the other father in my life-- the father of my children.

And he is way hotter than Morty Seinfeld here. Sorry Morty.

I could list all the ways that Roy is a fantastic husband and father... but you know what a great father looks like. We are very lucky to have him, that's for sure.

My purpose here is to praise Roy as a partner in publishing crime. I really couldn't have put together and published my book(s) without Roy. He was my first sounding board, he was/is an excellent editor. He is tech support for the random crash and his hours of assistance formatting files for e-publishing or for hard copy have been indispensable. But where he really, really pulled my bootie out of the fire was with cover design. He is a man of many skills and can make garbage look beautiful. I feel like I have learned a lot about cover design since the first book, but I still hope he will help me beautify the second cover, because no one does it like he does.

So, thank you Roy, for being a the World's Greatest husband and father. But thank you ,as well, for all your help with my silly little writing project. It would be nowhere without you.

Happy Father's Day, Honey.

Friday, June 17, 2011


No... not the blockbuster, mind-blowing movie with the guy from Titanic. My book's inception.

A friend of mine who is reading my book and also happens to be from Montana--gulp!-- asked me how I decided to set the book in Livingston, MT. It is a reasonable question since I am a Puget Sounder who grew up in Arizona. So here is the somewhat embarrassing story of how I chose Livingston for Secrets:

I was at the dentist around this time two years ago and the hygienist was talking my ear off. Since my mouth is open and I can't answer back, I am basically listening to her monologue. She is telling me about the book she just read, and this book happens to be Twilight. I am not terribly interested in the book but I have no choice but to listen. As she rambles on, I take note that the story is set in Forks.

And I say, "Fmngs?"

Because, hello, have you been to Forks? It is the place where you run for beer and chips when you are camping at the beach. Or where you have lunch on your way through Olympic National Park. I'm sorry Twilight fans, it is a sorry place.

So she tells me, and I'm sure you all know, that Stephanie Meyer had never visited Forks (no kidding) but picked it because of the rainfall. Because vamps love the rain, apparently. This caught my imagination because I thought that Twilight could really be a shot in the arm for Forks. Perhaps it has helped, but the only effect I have noticed is a better quality of t-shirt.

Nevertheless, Twilight put Forks on the map.

The light bulb sparks to life over my head. I can write a novel and put some other town on the map, I tell myself. How brilliant of me.

I scurried home and pulled out my maps. Where should the story be? I wanted it in the west because the west rocks. And north because I didn't want my lovers to get too hot. And it needed to be mountain-y because they had to be able to hide a space ship and I love mountains. And, for some long-forgotten reason, it needed to be near a national park.

Then I found Livingston. Perfect. Mountains, Yellowstone, scenic... I was in business.

So I started writing. I figured vampires and wizards had been done, so I was going with aliens. But as I wrote and researched, I realized that Livingston was no Forks. It was a lovely town, so beloved by Robert Redford that he chose it as the location for A River Runs Through It. It was also the setting for The Horse Whisperer. Not to mention that Christopher Paolini is from there, so it is basically the setting for Eragon.

Oops. Didn't I feel dumb. Livingston didn't need me to put it on the map. It was already there. At that point, though, I had put lots of time and effort into the story so I went with it.

And that is the story of why I chose Livingston. I only hope that someday I will get over there and actually see if all the hours I spent on google maps resulted in plausible descriptions of the environs.

Monday, June 13, 2011

One of our greatest Presidents

I am finally recovered enough from camp that I can think fondly back on it and remember funny things. Yes... it really has taken five days to recover. I'm that old.

So, anyway, we are all with the camp counselors and they are prompting the kids on predators and prey and the life cycle and what animal is this and blah, blah, blah... I've stopped listening.

But I was paying attention when they asked which local critter was named after a famous president. The kids hemmed and hawed and struggled and came up with nothing. And then this girl in the back starts frantically waving her hand because she's got it. When they call on her, she enthusiastically announces that it is... John Deere.

Good old John Deere. Our beloved President. So beloved that we named all our tractors after him.

So, the real answer is the Roosevelt Elk. This guy:

Yes, impressive.

Of course, I shouldn't be mocking this poor girl since I had no idea what animal it was. But I still think John Deere is pretty flipping funny.

And they should start teaching history in school, clearly.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

How do you like your books: Virtual or Actual?

I can't decide if this picture is creepy or just awesome.

But I digress. So my mother thinks that I should run a bunch of hard copies of my book to sell. How I should sell them, I'm not sure. Door to door with them in a big suitcase? On the street corner, while wearing a banana suit?

Keep in mind that my mother also thinks that the Point Defiance Zoo has a wooly mammoth and that the YMCA doesn't allow women. So she is living in a different world.

This does present a quandry to me, though. I thought that epublishing was the greatest because it was free and instanteous. But so many of my friends don't have access to ebook technology. And that makes me wonder how big of an audience I am missing by just epublishing. Nooks and Kindle sales are growing but lots of people don't have them yet.

But if I made a hundred copies of my book, how would I get them out of my garage? And if someone ordered one, I'd have to go to the post office. I hate the post office.

I don't have an answer to this. Perhaps I am just too lazy for this option. But I do know that virtual or actual, hot guys from the books you read, possibly Edward Cullen or the guy with the abs, will come out of the page and give you a hug.Link

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Welcome to the Jungle

My most excellent friend introduced me to the jungle juice today-- the idea, not the actual drink, sadly. As a fan of alcohol, in general, and punches in specific, I had to check it out.

Below I have copied the recipe. Looking it over, you got to believe that the liquor store would be delighted to see you coming. $ $ $ $

But the thing that really caught my eye was the number of servings the recipe makes.

Jungle Juice recipe

Scale ingredients to servings

Use a large container ie. ice chest or similar. Allow the fruit to soak in all the alcohol for about 4 - 12 hours. Add all the juice and let sit overnight. Serve the next day.

Yes, it says 1.

Can you say "alcohol poisoning." Can you say "fatal alcohol poisoning?"

But I still want to drink it.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Into the wilderness

Yep, that'll be me...sitting by the stunning shores of Lake Crescent in an Adirondack chair, sipping a cocktail, living the high life, just like I deserve.

Sigh... not really. For I am heading into the wilderness with 77 fourth graders. 77 fourth graders who will all want to christen themselves in the waters of Lake Crescent. And run off into the rainforest to see if they can be carried off by a cougar.

So no chairs, no cocktails, just vigilance.

But,really, despite my sighing, I am really excited. As those who know me well know, this is the culmination of a years' labor. When the fourth grade teacher in charge of camp retired last spring, the other teachers said "no way" to taking on the job. At which point I said, "hell yes, my child is going to camp" and happily took on the task of organizing and fundraising and money collection and all that jazz. And here we are... and we are going.

And if I don't come back, hopefully I will have been eaten by a werewolf with rippling abs and not tormented to death by my 10 year old's gone wild.

Pardee out.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

March may come in like a lion, but June comes in like a vampire

And not a sparkly, pouty vampire either.

Nor a hot vampire, like Spike here.

But a nasty, rabid, anemic vampire that grabs a hold of your jugular and keeps chewing until there isn't an ounce of life left in you.

But that's just me.

How's your June going?