Sunday, October 31, 2010


Ten little witches were stirring up the pot,
One took a taste and cried, “OWW! It’s much too hot!”

The second witch cackled and held up her sturdy broom
The third one giggled, as she flew across the room.

The fourth witch said, “We’ll create a little fear.”
The fifth one laughed, “I’ll make sure the coast is clear.”

The sixth one sneered, bragging, “I can touch the sky!”
The seventh witch said, “I’m ready now to fly.”

The eighth witch grinned in a window she passed by.
While the ninth little witch let out a wicked scream.

Johnny woke up and said, “That must have been a dream.”
But the tenth little witch yelled, “HAPPY HALLOWEEN!”

(Written by Kim Kasch)

Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Pumpkin Patch

The Pumpkin Patch on Sauvie's Island is a great way to spend a weekend afternoon. Between the animal barn, the hay maze, the hay rides, and vegetable stands, where you can buy a fresh cooked ear of corn and munch your way through some yummy vitals, there's no better way to spend a fall day.

Check it out and I hope you have a Happy Halloween :)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sad, Sad Story

I tried to check the stats on this documentary but couldn't match the research. However I did find an article on OregonLive, which said that
"During a one-night national sting involving 29 cities last February, law enforcement officers picked up seven underage girls involved in prostitution in Portland -- more than any other city besides Seattle." So, it does appear to be a problem in the Rose City.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


So many of you might have heard of National Novel Writing Month or NaNoWriMo but have you heard of PiBoIdMo? It's Picture Book Idea Month. If you write picture books, this might be just the inspiration you need. And, no matter what, it looks like a lot of fun. So check it out. And if you decide to join in the fun, let me know. I'd love to raise a few cheers to all you picture book writers that are participating.

And here's my first one: "GOOD LUCK" to all you ideasters out there!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

50 Years of Mystery Book Awards in One Place

Who doesn't love a good mystery?

I used to watch Angela Lansbury every week on Murder She Wrote. And now I read more mysteries than I can remember Angela ever solving. So, if you're like me, maybe you'll be interested in this little bit of info.

Thanks to GalleyCat for the information.

In you want to look on one site to see which books have won awards in the mystery genre, you can read more about it here. And, check out this site, it's a site to die for.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dear Lucky Agent Contest

The 7th Dear Lucky Agent Contest is up and running! So if you've got your manny ready, check it out on this site.

The Judge is Tamar Rydzinski and you can read more about her here.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Query Tracker Contest

If you are interested in getting a little feedback about your manuscript, hop over here and check out this contest. But you've gotta act quick. It's only a one day contest. Here's the info:

Agent Joan Paquette from the Erin Murphy Literary Agency will be judging this Query Tracker contest. The submissions open Wednesday October 27th at 9:00am Eastern time and end a short 24 hours later at 9:00am Eastern time on Thursday, October 28th.

It's a sponsored contest. And, even if you don't enter the contest, the site is full of great info. So check it out.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Inspiration for my latest manuscript

I've been working on my manuscript and these photos of my friend's son gave me a lot of inspiration.

Where do you other writers out there get your inspiration...?

Friday, October 22, 2010

FREE Friday

In these poor economic times, we could all use a little free stuff. So here are a couple links to help you make the most of a meager budget and maybe even win a few things along the way:

Home Projects Great Contest
: Upload photos that show a home project you made great.

Win a Logo for your small business created by Martha Stewart designers and Deluxe. If you're interested, check it out here.

And, for a FREE bag of cat litter visit

I hope you all have a freetastic weekend!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

CANDY - What's the Most Popular in the World?

The most popular candy in the world is still chocolate. Of course that was an easy guess. And, if you don't believe me, check it out here.

But if you want to guess, play this game and guess the top 50 candies. But be warned Sour Patch Kids are the Number 1 candy.

I guessed about 8 of the answers. How many can you guess?

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along-Blog

Oh but wait, in my opinion, it should be Captain Hammer's Sing-Along-Blog. I mean, I am a mother after all. And Captain Hammer at least here, in Portland, Oregon, is played by my son: Jacob Kasch.

So you know where my heart is in this one.

It was a crazy weekend or I would have filmed a clip with my camcorder -- unfortunately, all I had with me was my camera, not the best quality for a video :(

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Weekends Are Definitely NOT for the WEAK

We're all busy - I know all about it. After all, I'm a mom with three kids...

Okay the truth is my kids are all "technically" adults but, with two still in college, it doesn't always seem that way.

And with kids, of any age, family traditions are important.

It was Luke's birthday so he came home to go to the Apple Festival. Okay, since he was on his phone most of the weekend, one might surmise that just maybe he came home for the presents. . . but the Apple Festival is something we've been enjoying since the kids were in kindergarten--maybe even before that.

You can always tell when it's Apple Festival season in Portland, Oregon. You just have to look up in the sky to see the Flying Fruit. A giant apple hangs in the air overhead. This beacon of red deliciousness heralds fruit lovers toward the festival.

So, then, after the Portland Nursery Apple Festival we headed straight for home to have a nice family dinner, which I wanted to enjoy at a local "family" restaurant because going out to eat has many advantages: no cooking, no cleaning, nothing but enjoying.

But Luke put a quick nix on that idea.

"I just want to stay home," he said.

"But," I really tried to bribe him here, "I was planning on Thai food," I told him.

Unbribeable, um, I mean Unswayable, he said, "I really want spaghetti."

Since it was his birthday, I tried to compromise, "There's always the Spaghetti Factory," I reminded him.

"Too noisy," he shook his head, "I want to be able to talk with everyone."

I know it sounds so sweet. BUT, if he would have told me BEFORE 3:00 p.m. on the day when everyone was coming at 5:00 p.m. - I might not have resisted so much--there just wasn't any time to argue. So, my husband called everyone and restrategized.

He told them just to come to our house, while I ran to the store to get the groceries. Then I quickly baked a cake--or two--since I have a BIG family. Oh, and I still had to cook the meal--for twelve people--and then serve it.

Just thinking about it, I'm tired. But, everything went O.K. with a lot of people pitching in--including the birthday boy "Luke" and Mackenzie.

Of course on such short notice, nothing could have gone perfectly. My Dracula cake didn't come out as I'd hoped. It was still warm when I had to decorate it. Icing wouldn't work--so I stenciled one of my Halloweenish favs on the front--yep, Vlad.
No time to be picky. So, I did the best I could. And I even threw a couple of eyeballs on the plate to make it a little more...festive.

It was a crazy, busy day. But you all know about those.

Oh yeah, and then we all went to see Jake's musical but that's another blog post.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Ghost Hunters

Halloween is just around the corner and the West Coast Ghost Hunters are offering tours for people interested in learning a little haunted history.

They say you can "Walk with the Spirits" in historic Oregon City, Oregon. You can check it out here:

Thursdays-Saturdays (October) @ 7:15pm and 9:30pm

Tours are 2 hours and cover over 20 blocks of the Historic McLoughlin Neighborhood in Oregon City. Tours start and end at the Ermatinger House at 6th and John Adams St.

I hope you'll have a haunting Halloween ;)

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Children's Book Bank

Did you know that the ratio of books per child in middle income neighborhoods is 13:1?

(I know that doesn't sound good) But did you know the ratio of books per child in lower income neighborhoods is 1:300?

The Children's Book Bank is hoping to change those numbers and you can help. They are looking for people to host a book drive or to volunteer to help narrow the book gap.

You can donate books your children have outgrown. This will be a great way to "recycle" and reuse while helping children and your community.

So, get involved with The Children's Book Bank, and if you aren't in Portland, look up similar organizations in your city.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Thursday Book Link

I've posted about this blog before but it's worth checking out again: Just One More Book. Hope you enjoy the cyber journey. :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Answer to Word for Wednesday

Answer: The word obstreperous means: to be unruly or resist control. If you want to check it out, look here.

Word for Wednesday - a Writer's Game

Word: Obstreperous

What does it mean?

Put your answer in the comments section and then come back around 3:00 to see if you were "write" or wrong.

Flashlight Press

Flashlight press publishes picture books, audience is 4-8 years old. Submissions guide on on-line:

Email the editor at Contact Shari Dash Greenspan.

Good luck!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Writer's Organizations

We, writers, all need a little love--especially considering all the rejection we get. So, join a group, organization or association. Just being with like-minded people will help. You'll see you're not alone.

Here are a few:

Academy of American Poets
American Crime Writers League:
Education Writers Association:

So, click your way to a little love.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Happy Columbus Day

In 1906, Colorado became the first state to recognize Columbus Day. It became a federal holiday in 1937 but people have celebrated Columbus' voyage since 1492.

Remember the poem: In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue...

Well, the holiday should help us remember but did you know that New York City celebrated the 300th anniversary of CC’s landing in the New World in 1792 and so it began. It became a day to celebrate patriotism, loyalty to the nation, and social progress.

Italians celebrate Columbus Day as a day to remember their heritage.

I hope you all have a wonderful Columbus Day and I might even eat a piece of pizza and have an Italian sode to celebrate. ;)

A NO-Carve Pumpkin

It's EZ - all you need to do is go to a craft store, buy a couple of eyeballs-yep, eyeballs, and stick a couple of toothpicks into the pumpkin then stick the eyeballs on the toothpicks. Plop a hat on the pumpkin head and use the handle as a nose. WAH-LAH wonderful Witchy-Pooh pumpkin.

No muss, no fuss, and craftiholic pumpkinizing is definitely looking up :)

You can add a cape or cloth and wrap it around the table to make Witchy look full sized and you'll definitely be getting a"head" ;) in the Halloween decorating department.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

10-10-10 - Celebrate Climate Solutions

It's a strange number and feels like it should mean something. And maybe it will because over at this site you can read all about the Global Work Party and taking part in events today as a way to Celebrate Climate Solutions.

It seems apt that I'll be at the airport at 5:00 a.m. seeing my niece head off to Churchill, Canada (also known as the "arctic") to study polar bears with Polar Bears International.

As an ambassador for the polar bear cause, Serena will be learning more about the crisis of possible polar bear extinction and standing up to give the bears a voice.

Part of Polar Bears International motto is: "Save the ice, save the polar bears"
And Zoos with PBI Arctic Ambassador Centers are leading the way.

I'll post more about Serena's journey and her tundra buggy experiences but thought this was an appropriate blog subject for today. And what a perfect day it is to celebrate climate solutions.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Weight Watchers

So I just joined Weight Watchers because it's something I need to do. I need to be watching mine.

There's only one problem: I love to bake, cook and eat. In fact my cake decorating class was scheduled to start on Wednesday night. It was going to be my third level of Fondant and Gum Paste Cake Decorating. It's hard to be around yummy food and not eat it--at least for me. So it's a GOOD thing the class was canceled, at least for now.

I wanted to do this because I want--no--I need to hold myself accountable and this group should help me.

That's why I signed up and started tracking what I eat--online. Weight Watchers is all about eating healthy and getting more exercise. Common sense, I know-but it's not so easy. Still, I'm hoping I'll make some good progress and learn a few things along the way. I'll keep you all posted and let you know how I'm doing. And, it can't hurt that I'm training for a half-marathon in June. :)

Friday, October 8, 2010

Kewl Green Products for Earth-Friendly Friday

I love looking for green products and this bag is a fun one that helps support sustainability while looking chic.

And, if you're looking for something fun and fashionable while still being green, why not check out these guitar string bracelets? I got my daughter a bunch of them last year for Christmas. This year I'm thinking of making my own out of violin strings for my son's gfriend. I'll let you know if it works out.

And I really love these recycled glass bottle earrings. How 'bout you?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

FREE is a very good price

And if you like to knit here's a place to find some fun and FREE patterns. And here's another place to find more free knitting and crocheting patterns.

Happy knitting!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Answer to Word for Wednesday

The Word "axiomatic" means aphoristic

yeah, I know, that doesn't help much

It's also self-evident or obvious. If you want to read more, check it out here.

Word for Wednesday - a Writer's Game

The Game with two W's: Word for Wednesday

Word: axiomatic

Take a guess, what does it mean...?

Put your guess in the "comments" section then come back around 3 to see if you were "write" or wrong.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Halloween House

I still have a lot to do but the process has begun

How 'bout you, are you ready for the holiday?

Monday, October 4, 2010

Strange Signs

Saturday we went to the Greek Festival and I thought it was funny to find a sign that said "No alcohol Permitted off Church Premises".

Then we walked over to the pastries and watched them being made:

We had to try these little puff balls of pastry. They are covered in honey and oh so yummy.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

FREE Stencils for Halloween

I'm a craftaholic. I love trying new things - especially at holidays. And I found these FREE stencils for pumpkins on BH&G webpage.

If you try these, please let me know so I can have a peek at your pumpkins.

Happy Carving.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Kewl Koala

A friend sent me these photos from Australia where it was 120 degrees and so hot the bears were asking people for water.

Then one Koala went looking for some shade and a homeowner gave this little guy some water...see what he does with it:

Friday, October 1, 2010

10.01.10 The SCARIEST Story of All

It looks like some sort of computer code...doesn't it? It must mean something...right?

Maybe it means something big is going to happen today or something bigger will happen on 10.10.10 - that's only 9 days away. Maybe we should all prepare for it, like we did at the new Millennium: buy some flashlights, batteries and extra water. My tip would be BUY CHOCOLATE. It's the single most important thing we might want to stock up on.


Well, I guess we could get worked up about all sorts of things on a day with such numerological significance as today but there's something bigger and scarier coming our way than a strange number: It's the death of chocolate.

THE DEATH OF CHOCOLATE... You might say, don't you mean Death By Chocolate?

But No. You heard me right the first time.

Scientists are racing to find a cure before it's too late and we lose chocolate to a disease. In West Africa, 70 percent of the crop of cocoa is produced and these cacao trees have no resistance to diseases that could destroy the crop.

That's why scientists are racing to find the sequence to path the genome for chocolate. You see there are two virulent pathogens that could wipe cocoa off the face of the earth, one is witch's broom and the other is frosty pod.

I read that the Mars Company in partnership with IBM are working to path the genome for the cacao tree. And, I for one, sure hope they are able to save chocolate.

If you don't believe me and think I'm merely trying to start October off with a scary story so I can simply jump start the Halloween horrors, check out this September 15, 2010 article from the Washington Post.

What would we do at that certain time of month, if there was no chocolate...? It really does sound like the beginning of a horror novel to me.

What say you?