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Dear Debra Kristi – A “Dear John” Letter From Thor

We have so many new visitors to the Women’s Unplugged blog, and since I have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING new to share with you all, I decided to repost an entry from Oct 2012 when one of my WANA-mates, Debra Kristi, sent her Thor doll on a world tour and he stopped by my house, sobbing…

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My dearest Debra Kristi,

Oh how I miss you … let me count the ways. I miss your wonderful smile and the bubbling joy of your laughter.

Sept 6:
Dear Debra KristiI am miserable without you but have arrived safely in England for my visit with CC MacKenzie. Let me tell you a little bit about that sod CC. To ease my heartache, I called her Mum, but instead of cuddling me to her breast, she told me to man-up, then forced me to pose in her greenery. You know how plants make my eyes water and my nose run. I miss your care, dearest Debra. May I call you Mum when I return home?

Oct 1:
After a long lonely journey across the vast ocean, I have reached the shores of Canada and entered Lisa Hall-Wilson’s domain where I’m fighting for my life…and my dignity. Remember the days when you tickled my tummy and called me “your boy”? Oh Mommy, dearest Debra, when will this torture stop so I can come home?

Oct 8:
From the Great Lakes to the Prairies, I’ve arrived at my next destination in time for the Canadian Thanksgiving weekend. Unfortunately, I’m stuck in a post office bin, freezing my tushie off. <sob> I’m so lonely for your arms!

Oct 9:
Am finally at the Seabrook residence. No doubt, you weep for my safe return. Serves you right! I’m sucking it up, being your brave boy and dreaming of the day when I’m once again nestled in your arms. Sheila took me to town where we got massages. Separate rooms, of course.  Even though I’m mad at you, I would never cheat on you, my dearest Debra. Goodnight, my love. Dream of me and I will dream of you. {photo deleted}

Oct 10:
My heart still aches for your smile, my dearest Debra, but this morning I woke muchly refreshed and decided I may never speak to you again. Next trip, you’re packing your bags and I’m staying home. Sheila introduced me to my new neighbors whom I’ve nicknamed Babs 1, 2, and 3. While the fireplace warmed my feet, the three Babs read me Sheila’s latest release Wedding Fever, a spellbinding tale of lost love, buried treasure, and a ghost that will steal your heart. Best story ever!

Oct 11:
Today, I wiped you from my mind and spent a lovely morning writing in quiet solitude with my new BFF Sheila, then headed out to visit with her mother who, incidentally, let me call her Mum (take that CC MacKenzie!). Mum served me milk and cookies and called me HER boy. I may never leave…

Oct 12:
Today Sheila showed me her rock quarry, in case I wanted to wield Thor’s hammer, but seeing as how it’s a wee bit nippy out there, I chose to stay inside and spend my time with Babs 1, 2, and 3. I’ve made the decision to extend my stay at the Seabrook residence, maybe indefinitely. Not that you’ll even notice I’m gone.

Oct 13:
Just time to dash off a quick note. Dear Debra Kristi, I’m in heaven and am writing to tell you that I’m moving on. Please pack my things and send them to the Seabrook residence (address enclosed). Sheila has promised to make me feel like one of the family. I’m in love!

Oct 14:
We had brussel sprouts for supper tonight, Debra. You know how I hate those green things. It’s like I’m eating feet…

Oct 15:
The men here are sissies. Apparently I’m expected to wield the vacuum with the same finesse I wield my hammer.

Oct 16:
My dearest, darling, beloved Debra … Please forgive my peevish attitude of these last few weeks and take me back.

Oct 17:
The honeymoon is over. Last night, I escaped the Seabrook house and made it as far as the corner post office. Although my box is securely taped shut, I live in constant fear that crazy Seabrook bitch will discover my betrayal and force me back home to wash her floors and dust her cobwebs. I live for the day when you and I are finally reunited.

P.S. Have I told you how much I love you? And I promise not to call you Mommy … ever!

P.P.S. I’m digging through the post office mail, searching for a U.S. stamp so I can mail myself home. I’m about to commit a felony, all in the name of our love. If I get caught, please promise you’ll come visit me in jail. Sheila will certainly give you directions.

P.P.P.S. Unable to locate the proper postage, I’m resigned to continue my journey to the western coast of Canada. But first I must hide the evidence of my betrayal. I have burned this letter along with all the other letters in the post office. I’m unharmed, thanks to my protective shield.

P.P.P.P.S. As you can see, I really didn’t burn the letter. I’m saving it in case I change my mind. For now, the mailman has arrived and saved me. North Saanich, here I come…

Your loving he-man, Thor

Future of Publishing

Last weekend I attended a great conference in St. Petersburg. Held in a hotel on the beach, it’s amazing I was able to get any work done, but I did. The discussion panels were that good. In between sessions, I did sneak out and take a few photos. Who could blame me?

St Pete Beach

Some of the more interesting take away messages from the conference centered on the print industry, as in print books vs. ebooks. We all hear about the demise of bookstores, the print book going the way of the dinosaur with the onset of ereaders, but alas, it isn’t so. Print books are here, and I believe, here to stay. You see that beach up there? Who wants to get sand in their ereader? Not me. I take paperbacks to the beach!

But it’s more than reading venue that’s dictating the trends in publishing. It’s reader habit, reader access, and reader demand. Romance and Sci-Fi readers were the first to adapt to ereaders, consuming books at alarming rates. Memoirs, cooking books, history books, not so much. However, children’s books are definitely on the rise when it comes to ebooks. Blame it on the school systems handing out iPads, but I’m loving this news–I’m working on a children’s gardening book as we speak!

lower elementary on the lookout for bugs

However, the key to survival is marketing. (Isn’t it always?) Connecting with readers, offering services they want…

Take coffee houses. Connected them to a bookstore and you have the perfect combination. Wi-Fi centers, hangout spots, readers love to be surrounded by books and fellow readers. They also love great access, hence the onset of subscriptions services for books. One monthly fee gets you a ton of books, a very appealing concept for the voracious reader. Audio books is another avenue that is exploding right now. Today’s society is on the go and they want their “content” to go with them. Fast, easy, and accessible, kinda like a Big Mac or a Starbucks to go.

Authors and traditional publishing houses might be struggling to navigate through the changing tides, but readers aren’t. They’re surfing the waves and loving it. And I should know–I’m one of them! I embrace the increase in competition, the lower prices, the new and diverse type of content.

It’s been said that the only thing constant is change and it’s true, especially now. We are living and breathing “change” and five years from now, who knows what new devices will be on the market and what discussions we’ll be having. But I bet they’ll be exciting.

He Said, She Said: The Temperature Wars

Have you ever had a disagreement with your significant other over the temperature in the house? Whether you’re female or male, the answer is probably yes.

For years, my husband has been after me to install air-conditioning in the house. For years, I’ve resisted because I love to open the windows in the summer and let the natural breeze cool the house.

But last month, I finally gave in, and we now have a monstrosity of a unit outside our back door. And that’s when the temperature wars began…

He Said, She Said

He Said: (comes home from work, sweaty and hot) “It’s roasting in here. Why isn’t the air-conditioning on?”

She Said: (wearing t-shirt and sweats, and after a day inside, non-sweaty and cool) “It is. Give it a little while and you’ll adjust.”

He Said: (checking the temperature on the thermostat) “What’s the point of having air-conditioning if you’re going to keep it this hot? What a waste of money.”

She Said: (trying to be understanding) “If it’s set any lower, it’s too cold downstairs.”

He Said: “The temperature down there is only 20C (68F). How can that be too cold?”

She Said: (just the tiniest annoyed) “Trust me, it is.”

Ten minutes later, there’s a significant temperature change in the house. Upon checking the thermostat, she discovers the temperature has been lowered.

She Said: (pulling on a sweatshirt) “22 (71F) is too cold.”

He Said: “How can it be too cold? In the winter 22 is warm.”

air-conditioner

One hour later, she’s sitting in the downstairs family room reading, covered with a blanket. It’s so cold, she has to get a tissue because her nose is running. She heads upstairs to the dining room where he’s playing Solitaire on his PC…

She Said: (grumpy as all get out) “It’s freezing down there. It’s freezing up here, too. The air-conditioner has been running for a solid hour without stopping.”

He Said: (bundled up in a warm sweater) “How do you know? You can’t hear it inside the house.”

She Said: (seething) “The furnace room is right across from me. I can hear it run and it’s not clicking off.”

He Said: “Not possible.”

She Said: (stomping away, heading back downstairs to the good book she’s reading) “I’m not stupid, you know. Go sit in the family room for a while and you’ll see what I mean. It’s so cold, I’m ready to haul out my winter jacket.”

He Said: (actually, he just ignores her, which pisses her off to no end, and makes her regret installing the stupid air-conditioner)

Finally, she goes outside to warm up, but because it’s still hot enough to fry eggs on the pavement, she’s soon all sweaty. She gives up and heads inside, grabs a second blanket and hauls it downstairs…

Two hours later, he comes down to the family room…

He Said: (hands in pockets, looking smug and righteously right) “It’s nice down here.”

Then he goes back upstairs.

At bedtime, the air-conditioner gets turned off. The windows upstairs stay closed because, you know, you’re not supposed to open the windows when you have air-conditioning.

The residual heat from the day is trapped inside the house and the temperature in the bedroom climbs. Despite the fan above the bed, it keeps getting hotter, until she finally heads outside to cool off…or maybe just cool down.

She Said: “Stupid air-conditioner. Stupid men. One of them has to go.”

Do you have He Said, She Said moments in your household, too? If so, I’d love to hear about them!

A LITTLE YOGA BREAK

I love yoga. I love the flexibility, the deep breathing, and the peace it brings me. For the hour I practice the poses, my mind is focused on the singular task of performing the routines, which helps enhance my focus when I’m at the computer working.

maya-fiennesA couple of years ago, I discovered Maya Fiennes book, Yoga for Real Life, and her Kundalini Yoga to Detox and Destress DVD, and these quickly became part of my exercise program. Maya teaches Kundalini Yoga which “awakens awareness”. It is the oldest form of yoga and uses meditative focus, breath work, and chanting.

Recently I found this DVD available on YouTube, along with a couple of other cool features from this yoga teacher. Turn on your sound and enjoy the background music. It’s written and performed by Maya, who is also a classical pianist and performer. If you’re interested in trying it, this program runs about sixty minutes.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THX9jKPEMGs

However, if you want a quick routine to energize you, Maya also offers something different, a free style five minute routine that will totally get you moving and make you smile. If you don’t have time to check out the other links, make sure you check out this one because it’s super cool and fun!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zI0q1nG7BN4

Or if you just want to lie back and relax, here is one of her songs.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V05RKa1ohf4

Visit Maya’s website where you can learn more about Kundalini yoga.

Have you ever considered doing yoga or meditation? What about the practices appeals or doesn’t appeal to you?

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