Thursday, October 27, 2011

Adventures in Sacramento

Happy Thursday!! I know that I missed last week’s blog post but I have a great excuse…I was on vacation again.

I’ve mentioned before that my kids have a strange school schedule because they are on year round school. They are currently out of school and I thought that it would be fun to jump in the car and drive over 600 miles to visit my sister in-law in Sacramento.

Now, I grew up in Southern California and my kids have been to visit family in that part of the state many times. In fact, they thought that California was all about Los Angeles. But, I also went to college in northern California and wanted them to see the other half of the state.

So, we hopped in the minivan and headed west!

Twelve hours later we arrived at my sister in-law’s cute little cottage in Sacramento (yes, I said twelve hours in a car with two kids!). It was already late evening and after getting lost on the crazy freeways of the city, I was ready for bed. Unfortunately, the kids weren’t! They were excited to see their aunt and uncles (my brother in-law also lives there so it was a “two birds” kind of thing) and so I later fell onto the Aero bed exhausted!

The first day of our vacation, I was lucky enough to meet with a friend for lunch while my sister in-law took the kids to the zoo. I do love a good zoo, and my kids have been to several different ones throughout the country, and they were pretty impressed with Sacramento’s zoo. The one thing I heard the most about? The Giant Anteater! Who knew that it would be so fascinating…to hear them talk about it, I’m disappointed that I missed it.


Our northern adventure took us to my alma mater, Chico State University the next day. I wanted my kids to see what a beautiful campus it was and to have a sense of where their parents went to school. After spending over $100 at the student union on alumni gear, and grabbing lunch at Madison Bear Garden (one of the best burgers around!), all my kids wanted to know was when they could go to Target. I guess my past wasn’t all that interesting to a 7 and 8 year old.

One of the best days we had was on the third day when we went to explore Old Sacramento. We headed down in the morning with my sister in-law and the kids immediately loved the old west feel of the area. It’s set up like a town you would see in a Clint Eastwood movie with the wooden planked walkways and hitching posts. There are a variety of stores to explore with everything from kites to toys to Christmas decorations. We, of course, spent a good amount of time in one of the candy stores and walked out with a bag full of delicious salt water taffy in flavors like red licorice and raspberry lemonade – YUM!

Along with the fun of shopping, there is the Delta King riverboat to explore, as well as five different museums ranging from military museum to a railroad museum. We ran out of time to visit the California State Railroad Museum, unfortunately, because I was later informed by a friend that it is the best railroad museum in the country, and considering that I have one of those sons that knew the name of every engine from Thomas the Train, I think he would have enjoyed it immensely. We were able to get a few pictures on the train cars on display in the old depot. All in all…a really great day for the kids and myself (and I may have been inspired to write a period story set in the old west…)!

Oh, and later that day we went to one of the city parks in Sacramento that was FABULOUS!! There were two different play sets; one for little ones and one for the bigger kids. The bigger kids’ one was interactive and had some great kinetic aspects to it. The park was clean and well kept and we stayed until it got dark and I had to drag them away.

Our final day in Sacramento was spent with my sister in-law and her boyfriend at a local pumpkin patch and corn maze. With my history of getting lost in the myriad of freeways in Sacramento I let the kids lead the way in the corn maze and they did a great job. And what trip to the pumpkin patch would be complete without bringing home yet another pumpkin so we hauled two more pumpkins back across the country with us!

After another full day in the car, we finally made it home and like the best part of a good vacation…crawled into my own bed.

So that’s my excuse as to why I didn’t post last week…

Now on to the BOUNCE!!



Here's how this works:

If you are an author, click on "Get the Code Here" to get the link. Copy and paste that link in your blog post. Then hop right on and add your blog url to get added to the list.

If you are a reader, you get to bounce from blog to blog and meet some great new authors and maybe find some new books to read.

So everyone hop on and go for a bounce!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Exciting Events!



Thursday mean Blog Bounce!!

I have a few amazing things that I want to tell you all before I get to the Bounce!

On Friday I found that I got an AMAZING review for Indivisible on Sizzling Hot Book Reviews! There I was, minding my own business with my girlfriends and kids at the local bounce place (You know where they have all the blow up things that kids jump on and try to climb in their socks but slide and get some weird rug burn thing on their cheek – not that that’s ever happened…), when I got a notice on my phone that I had an email. I opened the email and it was a Google alert that Indivisible had been reviewed by Sizzling Hot Book Reviews.

Now, I get all butterflyee (just made that word up – feel free to use it in everyday conversation!) when I see that I have reviews. So, I wasn’t completely sure I wanted to click on that link and check out the review…but I just couldn’t NOT so I did. I’m so glad that I did! They gave me “Three Hearts” and said some wonderful things about the book that I want to print and paste on my office walls as inspiration! My favorite part was this:

Jessica McQuinn skillfully pulls readers into the conflicting emotions of an entire family-the traumatized wife, the far-away husband, the inadequate younger brother, the over-nurturing mother. McQuinn lets readers see their strengths and their vulnerabilities-everything that makes them human. And all the while, she deftly weaves in entertaining interactions so readers get to know and adore the characters' lighter sides, even as the story ventures into dark territory. Indivisible is an unforgettable story of the power of love and the importance of trust.

There were more wonderful things about Indivisible too so you need to go and read the review!

The other really good thing that happened to me this last week was that I had my first signing and reading! We have an independent bookstore here that does a “Local Author Showcase” every quarter, and I was lucky enough to be part of the most recent one.

I have to say that it was a very surreal feeling to be sitting up at the table with three other authors in front of a room full of strangers. However, nerve-racking would be the word for when the time came for me to actually read from Indivisible! I am not an “in front of people” kind of person, so my voice cracked and I made some silly jokes (I’m a bit sarcastic and I don’t know how that went over with the audience?), but I love the excerpt I read and I think that it was a perfect representation of Indivisible. I read the part where Gideon and Charlie are driving to take Gideon to the base before he leaves…so sad and funny and loving…have I mentioned how much I LOVE Gideon??

So if you want to check out a bit of information about the event, you can find it at The King’s English Blog. It was great fun and I met several awesome people and other authors! (And then my girlfriends all went out and had dessert afterwards so that was awesome as well!)

Still working on my reviews of the books I’ve read recently, but life is still happening!


Now onto the bounce!



Here's how this works:

If you are an author, click on "Get the Code Here" to get the link. Copy and paste that link in your blog post. Then hop right on and add your blog url to get added to the list.

If you are a reader, you get to bounce from blog to blog and meet some great new authors and maybe find some new books to read.

So everyone hop on and go for a bounce!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Life Actually Happened!

Okay, I know that I have been slacking...and I have felt horrible about it. But really and truly life just happened all around me and I couldn't catch up! (And now it seems that I am catching a yucky cold which has made me less than excited and just wanting to curl up under the covers today!)

It seems that since the kids started back to school, my life has just been chocka block full! I think it's quite unfair! I mean when the kids go back to school, that's supposed to be my time to write and have a quiet house. BUT - then I work in the kids' classes and work at the bookfair. Plus throw in my contracting work that I do, my regular upkeep of my house, homework, and all the sports and other activities I run my kids to, and book club...and I am ready for a vacation!

I promise to catch up and do my reviews of my Book Club books in the next week (done with Tina Fey's Bossy Pants and reading Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay so I will have two in the next week!). I had planned on giving you my review of the VERY FUNNY Bossy Pants today, but this cold has me ready for bed...

I did want to remind you all that I will be having a signing and reading as part of the Local Authors Event at King's English in Salt Lake City on Monday October 10 at 7pm! I'm so excited! I hope that anyone in the SLC area will be able to stop by and say hi!

On to the Blog Bounce!



Here's how this works:

If you are an author, click on "Get the Code Here" to get the link. Copy and paste that link in your blog post. Then hop right on and add your blog url to get added to the list.

If you are a reader, you get to bounce from blog to blog and meet some great new authors and maybe find some new books to read.

So everyone hop on and go for a bounce!