Love in the Time of Laundering

“How long did the contractors say you’d be out of your home, Mrs. Gardner?” The fire chief asking me this question wears a faded sweatshirt and old blue jeans. I take in his sneakers and can’t help wondering if this is how he typically dresses for work. Later it will occur to me firefighters don’t […]

The Village

When my first nephew Jordan was turning one, I went to Toys R Us to buy him a present. Bill and I planned to give him a savings bond, but I wanted to bring something he could play with, too. So I went to the 12-month-old section and chose a colorful stuffed wiggle worm. The […]

Published Novelist: The First Three Days

(My actual book in my actual hand. It’s possible I need a manicure.) DAY ONE 5:10 AM – The puppy awakens you by licking your face. She doesn’t know it’s launch day! and frankly she doesn’t care. Spend 45 minutes telling her to “go lie down” which she does in five-minute increments. Surrender at 5:55 because […]

An Abundance of Coincidence

So I have a book launching soon. Like in less than two weeks. And you might’ve heard about it once or fifty times because I keep sharing updates on Facebook. And Twitter. And this blog. And Instagram. And my newsletter. And OHMYGOSHHOWSICKOFMEAREYOU? It should be a hashtag. #toomuchjulie (But please don’t make that a hashtag.) Because things are […]

This Is Really Happening

Every once in a while I forget. I am busy with the business of life; with grocery shopping and cooking; with cleaning the kitchen and feeding the dogs; with sorting, washing, drying, and folding laundry. Putting it away. I get caught up in revisions on a new project or reading blog posts, catching up on […]

A Duck and a Beaver Walk Into a Bar

We went to Oregon over President’s Weekend and I haven’t written about it yet. I’m still a bit in denial about the motivation for our trip: College visits for my kids. My son is a senior and my daughter is a junior. 18 months from now, they both could be at universities in another state. Namely, […]

A Modest (Writing) Proposal

              Here’s a common-sense mantra for writers: Before you do anything else, Write Today First. In theory, it’s a pretty great goal but the acronym tells a different story: W.T.F. Sometimes, despite good intentions, our hearts simply will not settle. My mind (not to mention my body) can be relentless […]

The Peek Inside My Brain You Never Requested

At 9:18 this morning I quit seeking a clever topic for this post. Did my watery oatmeal signify the surrender? (Too lazy to measure liquid, I over-filled and got stuck slurping.) Was it the fact that as of January 12th, my dining room table still boasts a crowd of Christmas crap? Are those stains on […]

Over The River

It was not merely a house. Grandma and Grandpa had a four-bedroom, two and-a-half bath residence in West Covina, California, but the structure itself was not what made the house special. What was inside the house – the people, the possessions, the memories – made visiting Grandma and Grandpa’s house an extraordinary experience. Each room […]