Saturday, October 24, 2009

One More Birthday Boy

This is indeed the birthday week at our house -- finishing off today with our oldest grandson, Eric, who is seventeen.

I don't know how Eric could be old enough to drive cars and have a girlfriend and play hoops and score touchdowns, not to mention sing in his high school choir.

It seems like just the other day he was playing "western town" with the Fisher-Price guys.

Wasn't it last week we were reading alternate chapters of Seaman: the Dog Who Went With Lewis and Clark?

And it couldn't have been more than last summer that he was taking our dear dogs Jake and Cookie on walks.

How could he have three younger brothers -- one of them 11 and two of them 5?

Not possible!

It couldn't have been ten years ago that he and The Prof and I and Gunnar drove to Montana -- with Eric navigating. That boy could read maps before he could talk.

It was a memorable trip. He got to throw buffalo cake to the buffalo on our friends' ranch. He got to climb up to the falls near Bozeman and throw rocks over the edge. He got to learn about dinosaur digs at the Museum of the Rockies. And every day he wrote about it in a journal so his mom and dad would have a record of what he did (and because one of his grandmas is a writer and the other is a librarian and we both believed that he should write something, too).

He did.

He and I made it into a book, complete with pictures, when we got home. Just the other day I found our copy of his book, Eric's Excellent Adventure when I was cleaning out the back bedroom -- the bedroom which has been through lots of kids, including his own father, but which as often as not is called Eric's room.

Because he was the first -- and for 5 years an only -- we did a lot of stuff together. He was my right-hand man when we went down to Kansas to help his aunt and uncle get ready to move to Texas.

He was the only one, at times, who could get his two year old cousin to be reasonable. He has that ability -- to be cool and calm and sensible when everyone else is not.

His mom says he's a lot like his grandma. She means his other grandma -- trust me.

She's right, too. His other grandma is a terrific person. So is he.

Last year we got to watch him play baseball on the same team with his dad one night. This year we got to watch him play football on national TV. This season, for the first time, he and I get to cheer for the same pro football team -- his team, the Vikings -- because my quarterback is his quarterback now.

It's fun. He's fun. It's true what they say: grandchildren are great.

Especially this one.

He has brought tremendous joy into our lives. And he set the bar very high for all the subsequent grandchildren. They have a lot to live up to after Eric.

Happy birthday, E!

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Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Birthday Mom -- and Boys!

This is birthday week at our house.

My mom celebrated her 90th on Tuesday -- but wouldn't let me take my camera to her party. So I can't show you the event here. She said, enough! And she meant it. So here's one from when she wasn't 90.

There are other birthdays, too.

My favorite son-in-law's birthday is today. And he's camera-phobic, too. So I can't show you him celebrating, either. He's also my only son-in-law, which he continually reminds me. But that doesn't make him any less a favorite. Once he saved my daughter's life. How can I not love the man?

And then there are the twins.

Cooper and Carson are five today. They have a camera at their house, but I'm not there. I just talked to them on the phone and their mom says go ahead and put up summer pics -- they haven't changed all that much.

Well, no.

I can't tell them apart half the time now and I couldn't tell them apart half the time then. But I love them dearly even when I don't know which one I'm talking to.

They looked a lot different five years ago. They weren't supposed to arrive in October. They weren't due until two days after Christmas. We had a rough few weeks.

But as you can see, they've turned out fine. The wonders of modern medicine have done a great job. They are hale and hearty and make life interesting.

Happy birthday, boys! Love you!

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Tote Bagging On Thursday

I'll be talking about 'going home again' and all the bits and pieces that go into writing a book when my blog piece turns up at Tote Bags 'n' Blogs on Thursday. So check for it over there, please. Say hi. Be friendly!

I'm up to my neck in George, but I'm happy to report that Gunnar my dearly departed flatcoat retriever has come to my rescue. He told me this morning that George needed a dog. Boy, was he right.

And so, George got a dog. A dog named Gunnar. A flatcoat.

Imagine that.

And alll of a sudden it's so much more fun to write because I get to spend time with Gunnar every day. And Gunnar is making George come alive. Well, he's not yet because George is still in the hospital having had his near encounter with the truck.

But the fact that Gunnar is at George's house means that George has a very definite human side to him that wasn't quite so evident in the physics lab.

And his presence is requiring certain responses from Sophy. And she's seeing a whole side of George she's never quite believed in.

It's lovely.

And I owe it all to Gunnar. Somehow I'm not surprised.

If you haven't met Gunnar, but you want a retrospective, please go back to December 2008 on my blog and scrowl down to December 8th.

He's worth the trip.

* * *

I see by Amazon that One-Night Mistress . . . Convenient Wife is being shipped. And a friend in England tells me it's available there. And Kate Walker says it's out at eharlequin.

You can read a bit more about the background of it on Tote Bags Thursday. So, check it out!

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

All about Eyes

I am at the Pink Heart Society today/tomorrow depending on your particular place in the world writing a blog for Must Watch Friday.

My theory is that you ought to be watching Eyes.

This is not precisely easy unless you have Direct TV. If you do -- and you live in the US -- you can see it Tuesday evenings at 10 Eastern and 9 central. Check out the PHS and find out why you should be doing this.

If you have any questions, ask them there -- or here. If you need an incentive, see the pic to the right.

If you're already watching Eyes, congratulations! I totally approve.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Happy Hugh Day!

I feel as if I've failed.

I offered a free contest entry to my Hugh and Dan contest last week by telling anyone who could tell me whose birthday it was today that they were automatically entered.

The paltry number of those who wrote in with the information that today is Hugh Jackman's birthday (and also my niece's) is dismaying. Disheartening. Downright disturbing.

So, here we are on Hugh Jackman's birthday, and now to enter the contest -- unless you're one of the few with the free pass -- you have to tell me:

  • Daniel Craig's birthday
  • the name of the play they are starring in together right now on Broadway
  • the name of the author who first mentioned Hugh Jackman to me as a potential hero by telling me he was playing the role of Curly in Oklahoma in London. (hint: check old Hugh birthday posts)
  • the name of the hero of my upcoming (later this month) Presents book, One Night Mistress...Convenient Wife.

Which means you have to work lots harder to win. The prizes are pretty good, though -- a couple of DVDs starring Daniel Craig and Hugh Jackman (no, not together), some books including a my newest one (the said One-Night Mistress...Convenient Wife), some chocolate, some other yummy edibles and, well, who knows?

It would have been sooooo much easier if you'd just known what today is. I can see that this year we will have to have monthly quizzes or something to make sure that everyone knows the important dates in history.

Why is he important? Because he's inspired a whole battalion of books that might never have seen print if he hadn't been cast as the romantic hero. He certainly has inspired mine -- and I give credit where credit is due.

So, while you're coming up with the answers, here's a bit more inspiration for you to sustain you. Kate Walker says she's getting him a new set of towels for his birthday. This one will do for me.

Send me an email through the "contact Anne" link at the bottom of the page -- or go to my contest page and enter there.

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Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Me and George

I got home from New York last week and threw myself at George.

He threw me back.

He wasn't ready to talk, even though I'd found him a fantastic brownstone to live in, a good office at Columbia University to work at, and a plot that would get him Sophy in the end.

He was busy, he said. He had experiments to work on. He had things to think about. He couldn't talk to me now.

So I threw him under a truck.

That'll teach him.

Now he's in the hospital recovering. And when he opens his eyes he's going to find himself staring into Sophy's big brown ones.

We might have a book here, folks. I'll see what George thinks tomorrow when I turn up at the computer and open his file.

At least now he knows I mean business.

ps: I'm putting together my Hugh and Dan contest -- which I would have had up by now, but battles with George, and piles of laundry and suchlike have kept me from sending the stuff to Heather my webmistress.

But you know what next Monday is, don't you? Whose birthday it is?

Send me an answer to that question, and I'll put you in my contest before it even starts.

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