29 January, 2010

Edna II

Bill woke up bright and early this morning (by which I mean about 3:30 am with me groaning and hiding my dead under the pillow) and he wanted to make a day trip to Des Moines. I convinced him to wait until real morning, as with daylight and everything, and we went. We saw his dad, visited a friend, delivered some papers to my sister, had lunch at the BEST chinese restaurant in Des Moines, and even hit Half Price Books.

And we visited Aunt Edna in the hospital.

When I was there last Friday, they'd taken out her breathing tube, she was apparently doing well - but a bit loopy from the pain meds - and they were going to move her from cardiac ICU into a private room. That lasted all of a couple of hours before they realized she wasn't getting enough air. So the breathing tube went back in and she returned to CICU. The difference over this past week was... distressing.

My mom's having cataract surgery early next week and I wasn't planning on being there - my sister, Kelly, WILL be there and she and Mom have repeatedly assured me that I did not need to drive all the way there just to sit in a waiting room for a routine procedure - but I think I'll go. And check up on Edna again. Hopefully the weather will be decent.

28 January, 2010

Steamers Chicken Fresca

Bear with me here a bit.

I'm a big gal - oh, just admit it Tam, you're fat - and I'm trying to get my rear in gear and lose some of this excess. It's a multi-pronged attack, and part of that is - gasp! - diet! Which sounds really simple, calories in, calories out, watch the fat and bad carbs, plenty of fiber, eat fresh fruits and veggies yadda yadda yadda. We all know the drill. Doesn't make it easy, though, when there are super yummy 'bad' things like deep dish pizza and home made mac and cheese and big juicy hamburgers and all. Yum! And then there's the cost factor. Let's face it, fresh things are a bit more expensive to buy, take up a great deal of space, have limited shelf life, and don't always lend themselves to quick and simple meals. Plus I pretty much hate fruit, other than bananas and blueberries. lol

27 January, 2010

Wii Active

I bought it today and I started the 30 day challenge this afternoon. Very tiring. I was sweating by the end, but I think it'll be good. Bill and I have decided to buy a second set of leg-holsters and resistance bands so that we can exercise together.

Woot! :)

26 January, 2010

Baby Quilt Update

Maaan, I need to post about things I fret over more often. Laura's informed me that the mom-to-be has indicated to her that it's a girl, the colors are pink and brown, and she needs a quilt 'for show'. And, oh, Mom, the baby shower's in March now.

So. I guess it's all decided. lol

25 January, 2010

Upcoming sewing projects - The Baby Quilt

I have a lot of sewing to finish up this spring/summer, big quilts, little quilts, a couple of bags... But the one really pestering my brain is a baby quilt for a good friend.

Baby quilts are tricky, at least I think they are. Not only must they meet color expectations (which of course vary by recipient and the baby's gender, and let's be honest - all good quilts must meet that color expectation barrier) but there are other issues at play.

24 January, 2010

Wii little problem

 Laura has a Playstation something or another, a Nintendo cube thingy, various hand held systems, her own computer, and so forth and so on. Bill plays tons of games on his PC. Me? I have my Macs and my Wii. It's even named Tammy's Wii. I have a few games, but mostly I got it to shoot zombies (it's a real stress reliever to blow the brainz out of undead), play WiiFit and, after Jeans recommendation, Wii Sports Active. Only problem is, no one locally seems to have a Wii Sports Active.

23 January, 2010

Bungalow. Craftsman bungalow. ;)

The current Book-In-Progress is centered around a house, a craftsman bungalow to be precise, mostly because there are a LOT of them in small towns in the midwest. Tonight's mission was to research more specifics on their floorplans and layouts and things, so I spent a nice part of my evening looking through old 1915-1922 house catalogs online.

A couple that I liked are after the cut, and you can click on the pics to get a bigger view. :)

22 January, 2010


Bill and I have been married for a bit over 21 years. His family is HUGE. We've had 4th of July pot lucks at our house with more than 120 people just from the central Iowa area, with I dunno how many more scattered here and there that only come to official family reunions, weddings, and funerals. My local family is much, much smaller, about 20 people, including us, with maybe a dozen more scattered about, and most live in the same neighborhood. It's a bit of a culture-shock for someone like me to meet the Jones', but they're all really good people. A few members of Bill's family mean an awful lot to me - his dad, his brother Rick... and his Aunt Edna.

21 January, 2010

Fabric and chili and gamers, oh my!

We went to Tanya's quilt shop for lunch today (she has the bestest sammiches and soup) and she has a LOT of new fabric, which is quite exciting for me. I especially like the bluey-teal ones and the sunny-yellow/cherry-red ones. She's having a 10% off sale next weekend so she informed me that I needed to come back THEN and not buy TODAY. Which is whacked, but it's why I love shopping at Tanya's quilt shop. It gives me a whole week to contemplate projects tho! Woohoo!

20 January, 2010

Menopause Musings

And, no, I'm not talking about me. At least not yet.

I'm talking about a blog that has been on my daily must-read circuit for months. I found it via a friend's post on facebook and I just love hanging with Jenny and Mary. If you're a woman of a certain age - and even if you're not - you might want to check it out.

Today Jenny writes about Maya Angelou, and it's just awesome!

Beagle stuff. And more pet stuff. And, well... Stuff.

We have a Beagle - his name's Stewie - and he's generally a very sweet-natured PITA. He has, somehow, found a way out of the yard that leaves our Labrador (Gozer) stranded inside the fence. Stewie escaped yet again last night (escapes are fairly common for Stewie) and took off when I called him (as usual, hence the PITA part), so frustrated Tam went on to bed thinking it might do his 'ha-ha I'm FREE and you can't catch me!' pain in the butt attitude some good to spend the night out in the cold instead of asleep on a nice, warm couch. Gozer, of course, was quite worried and wouldn't settle down as he frantically searched the house for his missing Stewie.

19 January, 2010

Authorial Duties

I've mentioned before that, as a published writer, I get invited to conferences and to speak to various audiences. Which is part of the job, I guess. Sometimes, I get invited to speak at a school and, late last week, I received such a letter from a librarian at a juvenile facility.

Back to Des Moines

Bill and I are back to Des Moines in the morning because of the car. It's making a weird, somewhat loud Whoom-Whoom noise in the front end - we thought it was the wheel well or wheel bearing that wasn't repaired right after the collision, but, apparently it's neither of those things. Toyota is running a full diagnostic something or another in the morning and will - hopefully - determine if the noise is collision related (covered by insurance) or drive-train related (covered by warranty). My luck, tho, it'll be our fault because we didn't give appropriate sacrifice to the transmission gods or something.

I cannot afford to repair the bleepty-bleep car right now. Don't get me wrong, I really do love our Prius, but I'm not so in love with our bank balance. Here's hoping whatever's wrong is covered and won't cost us anything at all.

18 January, 2010

Just a quote

I collect quotes that resonate with me. Here's one that speaks to my insomnia. :)

"Unfortunately, the balance of nature decrees that a superabundance of dreams is paid for by a growing potential for nightmares" -Peter Ustinov

17 January, 2010

Heelz part deux

In case anyone has ever doubted my ditziness...

Last night, I was watching TV and felt some rough spots on the bottom of my foot. The nearly-new foot file was handy, and I just buffed away while watching Law and Order, then... YEEOW!

I sanded off part of the meat of the ball of my foot. Seriously. It bled a little, and it HURT. But it's been antibiotic-creamed and band-aided, and this afternoon it started to feel much better.

Tambo, she is a ditz! ;)

16 January, 2010

Just wondering...

What do the family members of the girls in the Girls Gone Wild commercials think about seeing sweet little Susie baring her boobs (or worse) on nationwide commercials?

I bet they're all so proud! ;)

Heading to hang with Kat

Laura, her friend Emma, and I are leaving soon for Des Moines. It's gonna be a fun day! :)

15 January, 2010


I wanted to write a bit, all about today
the things I've planned
the things I'll do
all the bumps along the way

I woke up and stretched this morning
to a day all fresh and new
but snuggled closer to my sweetie
to get another wink or two

So now it's noon and nothing's done
I've spent the morning fast asleep
dreaming of stories and smooches and things
despite the errands I had to run

There's still oh so much left to do,
But that's all okay
food to cook, chips to buy
my daughter's coming home today!


I'm not a poet, God knows, but Laura's home for the weekend so we can support my friend Kat as she does jewelry making demos at Merle Hay Mall in Des Moines for the Artists' Coop Gallery.

14 January, 2010

For Benjamin (and the fans)

Hey Benjamin! {{huggs}} The thing is, writing doesn't *have* to be painful for me, it's just the Dubric books have so much other STUFF wrapped up in them that no one knows about - especially a lot of anger and pain from my relationship with my dad - that it's hard to separate myself from them while doing the actual work. Then combine all that personal angsty crap with my well-established phobias... it's just not fun. I'm very proud of all three books and I wouldn't change any of what I've written. Well, I would change a single word in Ghosts, but that's a topic for another post on another day.

13 January, 2010


Every winter, the callouses on my heels crack, and I hates them muchly. Usually, I just make a point to keep my feet in shoes and wait for spring, but this year I Took Action. As in, I went out and bought heel cream and a heel file and went to work.

After two days of attention, they're all soft and secksay - and the Burt's Bees goop smells heavenly - but now my feet hurt and my knees hurt and it bugs me. How can sanding buffing off a bit of dry, ucky skin put all that stuff out out alignment?

Grr. Getting old sucks!

12 January, 2010


In quilt-speak, that's UnFinished Objects.

Our Vice President, Vicki, gave us a challenge for the year - to FINISH all of our UFOs. I have a LOT. Many are completed quilt tops,  a couple of big, bed-quilt sized ones, but most are smallish wall-hanging/baby quilt size. I have a couple of paper-pieced things I intended to frame - but never got around to. I have some table runners. I have I dunno how many projects that are still just blocks, or partially pieced, or merely cut, or half-appliqued. We're supposed to turn in a list of our UFO's at the next meeting along with 2 fat-quarters*. My list is gonna be scary. lol

The challenge is to see who can totally finish the most number of current UFOs this year. The winner will win ALL of the fat-quarters - with about 80 members and 2 fat-quarters each, that's 160 of them (but probably 1/3 of the members won't even participate). Still, that's a hundred or so fat-quarters. Definitely an incentive. lol

*A fat quarter is a piece of fabric 18x22". It's cut from a half-yard piece off the bolt that's unfolded and cut in half crosswise. I LOVE fat quarters! lol

So. Like, today...

Yesterday I sat on my butt getting this blog tweaked and writing two rather long posts. Today, I have to play catch up.

My fun filled and exciting list is below the cut ;)

11 January, 2010

Oh those pesky questions - Part 2: Pen names and things

Krista and Monica both asked about pen names. Here's where it gets touchy. I can bitch and complain about my childhood and mental problems and the Dubric books 'til the cows come home, but when it comes down to it I alone am responsible for my own happiness. I alone decide whether to write or not, publish or not, blog or not. So all the blame lands right here in my lap and that's okay.

Oh those pesky questions - Part 1: The future of Faldorrah

Here I try to be obtuse, yet inquiring minds want to know... ;)

We'll start with the Dubric books, but to do that we have to backtrack a little. Well, a lot. And this will get long and rambly. My apologies, but here we go.

Starting Anew

If you’re here, you’ve obviously found the link on the old blog site. Yay!

Now to bring y’all up to speed. (Note ~ If you really don’t want to read any of my personal angsty drivel, I totally understand. Just go ahead and bookmark this url and come back another time. Or not. Otherwise, you’re welcome to follow along.)

I’ve written before about some of my difficulties with crafting and selling fiction, especially since getting published, and I was really, really blocked for a very long time. I’m not blocked any more, but I also try not to talk about my writing outside of a very few people. It just messes up my head. As a companion to the writing, I’ve had tamboblog up and running since before my first novel came out - it was created at the encouragement of my editor - and while I have written some really cool things there, quite a lot has been boring drivel, place holders created mostly when I felt guilty for not posting for a long time.

In December, a couple of things happened. Haloscan, the folks who handled the comments for tamboblog, decided to stop their service on free accounts like mine and, frankly, I didn’t see a reason to pay for comments for a blog I almost never posted to. So I quietly let comments close. I talked with a couple of people about letting the whole site die off since I wasn’t writing the Dubric books any more, let alone writing for publication under my own name, and we’d all agreed that maybe it was for the best. With that in mind, I’d planned on a ‘good bye’ post at some point, when I’d collected my thoughts of how to bow out and fade quietly away, but apparently life had other plans.

My desktop computer - where I stored all the data for tamboblog, among other things - started having problems right before Christmas. Ultimately, the hard drive crashed and I hadn’t kept recent backups of blog data. As in, not for a year and a half. I could go back to the last archived version and just lose those posts - there really weren’t all that many - but then I thought, why not just walk away? The whole domain will expire in June, after all. It’ll all be gone in six months anyway. Why even try to keep the illusion going any longer?

Why? Because I don’t like to cut people off. I’ve made a lot of friends, people I care about a great deal, and I didn’t want to leave without some sort of mode of contact. Sometimes I *want* to mention something I feel is important, pass on a bit of news... or even talk about the work, creativity, depression, life, love, cooking, sewing, pets, parenting, small town living, and all that jazz.

I just don’t want to be ‘professional’ about it.

I don’t want to have to worry what people think. I don’t want to consider if this stance or that opinion will upset my publisher (or other writers). I don’t want to have to censor my words, my cussing, my anger, my shame... or my quirky joy over things that make other people scratch their heads.

I just want to be myself, and I just want to be happy.

I don’t know how often I’ll post, don’t know what I’ll talk about, or of this is merely an exercise in futility. I guess we’ll see.

But you’re welcome to come along and walk with me. There’s no telling where we might end up. :)