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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!

We Interrupt This Program For An Important Announcement…

It took me three days to rewrite the major love scenes for Terms of Surrender, my upcoming October release. Three days of pouring over every word, rearranging body parts and character thoughts, and fixing everything in between.

Where the magic happens!

Where the magic happens!

As I tried to bring emotions and life to the page, my DH vacuumed around my feet, rearranged all of the books on the office shelves, and decided the walls needed to be repainted.

Okay, okay, I confess, I’m exaggerating a wee bit…but not much. During this three day stint, there seemed to be a multitude of interruptions. When characters come to life, it’s like an obsession and all the writer wants to do is spend uninterrupted hours with them.

So as my hero spilled his guts and the truth, certain my heroine would reject him, the phone rang…my mother calling to relay the latest news about her annoying neighbor.

And while my heroine attempted to deal with a situation guaranteed to keep the hero from ever committing, my cell phone buzzes…my sister texting to ask me to ask my DH a renovation question or twelve.

As I worked on getting the love scene to scorch the page (I hope!), my DH vacuumed around—and beneath—my feet, the geese and ducks demanded I stop so I wouldn’t miss their flight south, and the phone rang again and again and again.

I’ll leave you now with the blurb from Terms of Surrender, but before you go, tell me what kind of things interrupt the important parts of your life.

Lasso

A woman in need…

ER nurse Harley Jane Davis has dedicated her life to helping others. Now she’s the one in trouble, and the only person she can rely on is Gage Toryn—the man she’s secretly been in love with for years.

A man on the edge…

Gage would do anything for Harley…except give in to the hungry passion that sparks between them. He’s hiding a terrible secret, one guaranteed to destroy any chance at a relationship. And even though Harley haunts his dreams and makes him want to be a better man, he knows she could never love him if she learned about his ugly past.

Family, future, forever.

When a situation with Gage’s brother endangers Harley and his nieces, Gage offers them refuge in his home—and the battered pieces of his heart. But can he overcome his fear of commitment and open up about the past? Or will his secret destroy his last chance to have a relationship—and a real family—with the only woman he’s ever loved?

Favorite Mother Moments

This weekend, my daughter and I were working a row of weeds.  Actually several rows, but since I promised her we’d only tackle one row a day—the trick to securing her continued return—I was doing the bulk of the weeding.  Which I don’t mind.  Surrounded by sprouts and vegetables in varying stages of growth, I feel productive, the weather is sunny, warm with a light breeze.  Life is good!

When she rose from her aisle of hay and exclaimed, “All done!”

I had to smile.  The relief on her face was too funny—and predictable—and I couldn’t help but tease, “Already?  Wow.”  I surveyed her handiwork.  “You’re amazing.  How about another?”

Mom,” she replied sternly, slapping a dirt-covered hand to her hip.  “You promised.  Only one row.”

red hibiscus flower

“I know, I know.”  I chuckled.  “It was worth a try.”  Dismissed, she trotted off to find her brother.

 Only to return an hour later.  Kneeling down in the row beside me, she began to pick at weeds.  I glanced at her, surprised.  “What are you doing?  I thought you were finished weeding.”

“I am,” she reassured.  “But I’m bored, so I thought I’d come help.”

I sat back on my heels.  “You’re always welcome to help.  In fact,” I added, “I like being in the garden with you, just us girls.”

This drew a smile from her, but she maintained focus on her task.  I resumed my leaf pluck expedition down a line of lettuce and together we worked in silence until she murmured, “Mom, you are Superwoman.”

My heart sung!  My spirit soared!  “Superwoman?”  I tried to conceal my glee. I mean—could it be trueShe finally noticed?

She nodded.

Warmed by the sentiment, I smiled, flattered she noticed.  It’s because I’ve devoted my life to you, isn’t it?  I’ve signed on to be Girl Scout leader, always offer to be school volunteer, ever the reliable athletics chaperone…  

Basking in the glow of my daughter’s admiration, my imagination frittered about, enthralled with a sense of validation, honor, and the glorious reward for my years of dedication. 

burst of lantana color

That’s when I lost all sense of good judgment and replied, “That’s so sweet.  But you know, baby doll, I’m not Superwoman.”  I didn’t want her to invest any time in unrealistic goals and expectations for herself, her future, so I told her, “I’m just a woman, doing what she loves.”

Her expression twisted in confusion.  “You love weeding?”

I pulled back.  “Weeding?”  Now we were both confused.  “No…”  My hands fell to my sides,  landing in dirt.  “I was referring to your Superwoman comment.”

“Oh.”

“Why did you say I was Superwoman?” I asked, but could feel the hoe slicing through the air, its blade headed straight for me. 

“Cause you have endurance!  I don’t know any mom who could weed as much as you!”

Ouch.  Bubble-filled fantasies popped.  My ego deflated.  There’s a kick in the rear.

But as those innocent green eyes held me in their gaze, I knew I couldn’t be upset.  I had to take her at her word—the one she meant to be a compliment.  And while it may not have been the one I had hoped, it was her own, and wholly genuine.  Heartfelt. 

It doesn’t get any better than that.

Rising from my knees, I walked over and placed a kiss on the top of her head.  “Thank you, baby.  I appreciate that, and it was kind of you to say.”

sunny gerbera

She beamed, pleased with herself.  I grinned, heartened by her self-contentment.  Both of us were satisfied with the moment, the kind which may prove scarce as she grows into adolescence. 

So me, I took my lump of sugar when and where I could—as any smart mother would.  One never knows when the next batch will arrive!

After all, it’s the life called mother.  Have any moments to share? 🙂

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