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On the Way to Iceland

Typically, my trip begins a day earlier than my mother’s. I have to drive from my place to hers. This is a 500 mile trip that typically takes me most of a day driving. Since I’m doing it alone, I generally get pretty bored.

This year I got smart. I finally succeeded in setting up the app for my public library. I was able to download a combination of five ebooks and audio books.

I listened to Fifty Shades of Grey on the way there. I enjoyed to book, but didn’t want to drag it on, so set it for 1.5 reading speed and fast forwarded through some of the more repetitious sex scenes.

The picture above was taken in Idaho, about half way from home to Mother’s place.

Continue reading On the Way to Iceland


Night Sins by Tami Hoag p.88

“It’s a starting place, Chief. We’ve got to start somewhere.”
“Yeah. If only we knew where we were going.”

Ambrosia of The Purple Booker
hosts Teaser Tuesday. To play along, grab your current read, open to a random page, share a couple of “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page. Then go see Ambrosia to link up and visit others.


Suzie’s House 502 : Steps

Emma fell asleep in math class. She couldn’t remember having ever fallen asleep in school before. But then, she’d never stayed up until nearly dawn learning self defense moves either.

But that wasn’t really the thing. A year ago she would have been too uptight to fall asleep no matter how tired she got. Nor was it the self defense lessons, though they certainly didn’t hurt. It was the conversation she’d had with Trent, Sonoma, and Drew afterwards.

Continue reading Suzie’s House 502 : Steps


Iceland and Greenland

Some general impressions:

  1.   I’ve heard it before, but it’s really true.  Iceland is green and Greenland is icy.  Talk about false advertising.
  2.   It’s all Eric the Red’s fault.
  3.   Iceland is really expensive.
  4.  The economic crash of 2008 left a bigger impression there.
  5.  They eat a lot of fish.
  6.   Much of which is raw.
  7.  They also served us stuff like shark, horse, and lava.  Yeah, I’ll explain the lava, but not for a few days.  🙂
  8.  Iceland is one huge volcanic field dotted by volcanoes.
  9.   It’s really, really “new” land.
  10.   It hasn’t been inhabited all that long.
  11.  Greenland is deadly
  12.  and desolate.
  13.   Both places have their charms.

best laid plans

Yeah, Suzie’s House will be posting on Mondays starting NEXT Monday. Today I’ll work on dealing with the graphics issue that Photobucket just dumped on me.


Suzie’s House 501: A Hand in the Cookie Jar

Suzie's House

“A singer! What a wonderful choice!” Sonoma beamed her approval across the kitchen table at Emma. Trent nodded agreement.

Emma knew she shouldn’t take it too personally. She had only known the old couple for a matter of hours. Still. She couldn’t help grinning under her blush. She might not need their approval – as they would be the first to say – but she sure liked it.

If it hadn’t been the middle of the night in Mrs. H’s house, she’d have burst into song to demonstrate.

Continue reading Suzie’s House 501: A Hand in the Cookie Jar



Hi, I’m back!

It was a great trip. We went to Iceland and Greenland. I took over 8,000 pictures. I have a ton of notes. The notes are a mess. I really need to get a better microphone – something that can handle bus sounds.

I have downloaded all the pictures, but haven’t started winnowing yet. I’m hoping to have my first trip post up next Monday.

But enough about that. The exciting news is that we had an earthquake.

I’ve been in minor tremors plenty of times. Frankly, this one wasn’t all that impressive since I’m so far from the epicenter. But it sure felt different. Rather than simply going about my business then suddenly feeling the shake, then going about my business as if nothing happened, this one made my hair stand on end. Maybe not literally, but certainly emotionally.

It was 5.8 on the Richter scale at the epicenter for the first wave, 4.9 for the second wave and 4.5 on the last one. The first got me out of bed and wondering mildly if I should climb out the window of my ancient, wobbly house. It wasn’t so much the motion that got me. Frankly, my husband’s restless leg syndrome is worse. It was the feeling of pressure and tension that didn’t go away. I got the feeling something much bigger was on the way.

By the second wave my son and I were both in the kitchen talking about it, and feeling a little skittish. By the third wave I had a headache. I had gotten dressed, but still hadn’t bothered to leave the house. My son’s girlfriend didn’t even bother to get up.

I stayed up much later than normal and read while waiting to see what would come next. By one in the morning the tension levels seemed to have evened off. My hair was back in place. And I was too tired to care. I crawled back into bed.

The next day, comparing notes, my husband hadn’t felt anything. My daughter thought it was her imagination. I’m wondering if it was close enough to include in my natural disaster collection.


Gone, But Not Too Long

I’m traveling! I’ll let you know all about it in July. I’ll get back to things like Suzie’s House and Thursday Thirteen then.


Suzie’s House 500 : Rights

Suzie's House

“When you catch yourself thinking the kind of stupid things your brother would say, tell yourself, ‘I have a right to be myself. Nothing anyone says can change that.’” He made air quotes.

“You’ll probably have to tell yourself a lot of times.” Sonoma agreed. “Along with things like, “I have a right to be here.” “I have a right to be heard.” and “I have a right to be loved.”

“But… What if I don’t?” Emma’s voice rose enough to make her throat hurt. She couldn’t think of an example right off the top of her head, but Emma was pretty there were limits. It was all kind of murky.

“Dear.” Trent patted her hand. “You always have all of those rights.”

Continue reading Suzie’s House 500 : Rights


A Car Accident. Sort Of


I got a mild concussion from my car. It wasn’t the kind of collision you might imagine. It was the back hatch with rotten pistons crashing down on my poor unprotected head.

It was stupid. I knew the stick holding the hatch up was vulnerable. I knew the load was too wide. I even knew just how ridiculously heavy that hatch door is. Still, I tried to get the central support for a new racking system out of the back by myself over The Boy’s protest.

The sucker clobbered me in the hairline right over my forehead. Though the goose egg that rose is still huge a week later, you can hardly see it. Maybe that’s why my family hadn’t been gentle with me at all.

Not until a few days ago when the swelling finally moved down out of my forehead and into my eyes, which promptly turned dark black with hints of blue and green.

Each day I watch the injury move down and spread. My forehead was only puffy for days. When it went down my left eye filled with black and blue then over flowed and is now wending streaks down my left cheek. My right eye took only a little color, then moved promptly to my left cheek, which swoll a little before turning colorful.

I went grocery shopping a few nights ago. I got quite the collection of horrified looks, but no one bothered to ask what was wrong.

Ok, so that’s the external. Now for the internal. The accident took place around ten pm. I made myself stay away until well after midnight, then decided that had to count as normal fatigue and went to bed.

The headache didn’t start until the next day. It’s never all that bad. Just a little nagging pain that crops up every time I move around, bend over, or press on the goose egg. The occasional vertigo isn’t all that severe either. But it’s enough to tell me to take it easy for a while.

Too bad I’m going on another big trip in a few weeks.


Things I Wanted to Do

150806n 973

Just a quick look back at a previous post.

1. I can’t say I’ve really gotten back to blogging, but I’ve gotten better. 🙂

2 I’m still sitting around in the living room, but that is partly because I’m nursing a concussion. Moving gives me a headache.

3. I’ve taken little nibbles at the computer issues. I’m still not fully functional, but getting closer.

4. Motivation has been creeping up on me. Maybe I don’t really need to worry about my lack of it.

5. My reading has returned to normal levels.

6. I haven’t gotten much work done, but I’ve been trying. Kind of the revers of what I was after.

7. Gained weight rather than losing.

8. Still haven’t got the cell phone set up.

9. Been eating chocolate. Probably why I’m not losing weight.

10. Gifts are shipped! Now I have a couple of cards to come up with, but otherwise free and clear.

11. Got The Boy to fix my bicycle. Yay! Been riding, but now holding off until concussion goes away.

12. Never enough sleep.

13. I’m unsuccessful in getting nothing done. I’m counting that as a good thing.


Suzie’s House 499 : Midnight with Cookies

Suzie's House

Sonoma. What a weird name. Emma lay on the bed in Miranda’s room and stared at the ceiling. The room smelled of shoes.

Emma always thought Miranda didn’t like her. But as soon as she found out about Emma and the thing with her brother, Miranda cleared the piles of clothes and shoes off the bed in her room. The place was a kaleidoscopic mess – like one huge walk in closet turned inside out.

Continue reading Suzie’s House 499 : Midnight with Cookies


Suzie’s House 498 : Shelter from the Storm

Suzie's House

The girl gaped adorably as she stared across the den at them. Sonoma had always found that lost waif look appealing. Knowing what little she did about Emma, Sonoma felt compelled to do everything she could to help.

Trent smiled and gave her hand a squeeze – his signal that he totally understood her feelings, and would back her up. The two of them had encountered waifs any number of times over the fifty plus years of their union.

Continue reading Suzie’s House 498 : Shelter from the Storm


A Random 13

1 I
2 can
3 at
4 least
5 come
6 up
7 with
8 this
9 many
10 words
11 if
12 I
13 try

Totally Random Picture – Jakarta highway.


Suzie’s House 497 : Decayed Fears

Suzie's House

“You’re Jim’s sister? You poor thing.” The old man shook his head.

Emma stood in Mrs. H’s den like a stupid deer. She couldn’t decide if she should stare at Drew or the old man and old woman so she tried to do both and probably looked like a total derp face.

“It’s alright,” Drew said. “They’re harmless.” He gestured at a chair next to her. He was already sitting in the one opposite of her. The old couple had the couch.

Continue reading Suzie’s House 497 : Decayed Fears