There are stories in every marriage that get told over and over again. This is one of those classics that Mr. Nina and I still laugh about … well, he laughs and I give him the hairy wife-eye! Anyway, this happened four years ago this weekend and I just thought it was worth sharing again. Enjoy …

Okay, so Baby Girl goes off to work, Little Boy Blue hops on the bus for a basketball game and DH asks… wait for it… “wanna go snowmobiling?” Not what I was expecting, but heck, we just got another foot of snow, it’s above 10 degrees F and the sun is shining. I figure what the heck. We’ve gone around and around about how much I enjoy staying on the trails and if he could please follow the map, I might enjoy myself.

Sure. Sure. No Problem.

First… (and this is where I should have jumped off the sled, thrown down my gloves, and stamped back into the house… obviously I didn’t) First, he’d like to swing over to a buddy’s camp and check out what he’s up to.

“Is it waaay off the beaten path?” He can see I’m ready to bolt. I’m not really interested in breaking new trails in the middle of the northern Maine woods–again.

He laughs. “Now honey. Would I do that to you after our last ride?” At which point he jumps on the sled, sending us hurtling into our next adventure. 

My first inkling that something had gone wrong was our trip down a very long road a couple towns over. Now, the police are pretty lenient here. You can cross the road, you can even travel a short distance on a road to get to the trail, but the law clearly states a sled may not use the road as a throughway. Fifteen minutes at 50 mph (you do the math) and we’re still on a major road, I’m thinking something’s wrong. But hey, if the cops stop us… it’s his license and being lost in civilization works for me.

Why I didn’t ask him to turn around at that point is beyond me. I knew, I mean, I knew nothing good was going come of this. Finally he turns off the road into the woods. I’m not freaked yet, he’s not going through fresh powder, at least one sled has come this way. Besides I’ve been to this guy’s camp… it’s nice… lots of well groomed trails. But then the trees close in on us. The sled’s wobbling here and there, but I’m not panicked. DH has assured me he can control the sled. I worry too much.

But then we’re really dragged off the trail. He compensates, only to be pulled the other way. I’m not panicking, he’s only dumped me once. (Off a snowbank in front of people coming out of church… but hey we managed that unscathed.) So as the sled continues to bounce from side to side I keep thinking he’s going to pull out of it.


Next thing I know I’m being dragged off the sled as it catapults forward on its side. My foot is caught under the sled and for a moment I worry about refracturing my pelvis. But then all is still. DH hits the kill switch and tells me to get up! Now! Did I mention I have MS? Even under the best conditions nothing about my body moves fast. So he hauls my butt up and out of the brook we and the machine are laying in. A brook! The song “Islands in the Stream” took on a whole new meaning at that point.

Now, trust me when I tell you that gurgling mountain brooks are only pretty in the summer or on video tape. Seeing water running through the engine of the only thing transporting you out of the middle of hell nowhere is a little frightening even for the hardiest souls. Undaunted, DH manages to get all three of us at least out of the water. But now there is a brook and a 3 foot drop between the sled and the trail.

This is so not looking good.

“How far from the camp are we?” I ask, realizing there is no way I can walk.

“Between 1 and 4 miles.”

“You’re not leaving me here alone.”

“If you think I’m dragging your cute butt down this trail, you’re sadly mistaken. I can go faster alone.”

“At least leave me the cell phone.” I say, knowing there are no towers and it probably wouldn’t work anyway, but it might give me some comfort.   

“I didn’t bring it. Really. It won’t be long. Sit here in the trail. You’ll be fine.” And he turns and walks away.

Have you heard silence? Because snow is an insulator and it swallows all sound. There’s an eerie stillness in the middle of nowhere.

This quiet allows my vivid imagination to conjur up all sorts of wild stories. Not the least of which is the lead anchor of the local news cast reporting on the corpse of local author found frozen to the seat of her snowmobile mired in mud. 

So I sit and wait. Trying to remember all the stages of hypothermia. No, I’m not shivering, yes my fingers still move. And I wait some more wondering if I should start walking. (Mind you, I can barely get myself standing from this sitting position in the snow… but perhaps I should just give it a try.)

Then I hear another sled. And there they are, my knight in shining armor… and the @$$hole of a husband that told me we’d go for an uneventful ride.

Lots of lifting and maneuvering of a 650 pound snowmobile and some digging with a shovel and they had the machine back on the trail. I chose to ride with my knight and left DH to find his own way back to the camp.

Since many people are still riding a Christmas overload (and I’m actually still vacationing in Maine with family … don’t you love scheduling blogs?), I thought I’d take this week to share a little more about me. (Like you didn’t already know more about me than you ever needed to know. 😉 )

So here’s six more random facts about Nina that I hope you find interesting or perhaps a little amusing…

1) I love the sound of my own voice. I can talk about anything — for a very long period of time. I once won a bet that I couldn’t talk nonstop for a complete roadtrip from Maine to Connecticut (a 4 hour drive)… did I mention I won? Mr. Nina has never dared me to talk for a specific amount of time!

My mother told me when I was growing up she had to keep reminding herself to “tune back in” to my jabber because I might actually say something important.

Yep, I do love to talk… I’m sorry, did you say something?

2) I’m a bit of a daredevil. I’ve been solo skydiving. Yep, I stepped off the wing strut of a perfectly good plane and trusted the parachute would open with the fall. It did and it was one of the most exciting things I’ve done. I’ve also been in a hotair balloon, took a helicopter ride into the Grand Canyon and ridden an innertube down a river, including over a busted dam. That was an interesting day!

I’d still like to do a freefall sky dive tandem and go white water rafting down the Colorado river.

3) I really admire George Plimpton. You never heard of him? Most people haven’t. I’m going to reveal my age when I tell you I watched George Plimpton as I was growing up. The man was an author who believed the best way to write about something was to experience it first hand. He has been a bullfighter, an orchestra conductor, a trapeze artist (my personal favorite) a baseball and football player, a boxer, a circus performer and a tennis pro. I had the thrill of listening to him speak when he came to the university I attended. I dragged a good friend who had no idea who he was and wanted to hide under the chair when I kept asking him questions.

4) Referring to the above, I’ve always kept my employment opportunities open. I’ve had no less than 50 different jobs since I started working at 15. My least favorites include: janitor in a girl’s dormitory, working alone in a mortgage office, and substitute teaching in middle school. I think my all time favorite had to be the summer I spent on an island off the coast of Maine as a camp counselor. Looking back, I can’t imagine how those parents let three college aged woman ferry their 5th, 6th, and 7th graders out to the island by canoe (along with all the food and camping gear for 20 people) for 4 days. I was too young and stupid to realize what kind of responsibility I had!

5) English was one of my worst subjects in both high school and college.

6) If I could be anything (education or talent aside) I would like to be a stand up comedian or a singer in a band. I’d love to be able to perform in front of all those people and help them forget about their lives for a couple of hours. I’d love nothing more to leave them with smiles and feeling really good. (And the picture below has nothing to do with anything, except this is boxing day and people are returning all those unwanted gifts … and I definitely wouldn’t return this guy!)

I’d love to hear an interesting fact about you … ah, come on, share!


Erma Bombeck
Because I’m in the middle of packing my house I’ve decided to run an oldy but goodie Thursday Thirteen that originally ran in April 2008. But I STILL love Erma and her quotes never get old …

Erma Bombeck (1927-1996), I love the woman. She was a magician with the written word. With a couple quick strokes of her pen she could have me crying or laughing. So I decided to find 13 of my favorite quotes (and I had a hard time whittling it down to 13). Some of these things she said, some she wrote in her books. If you’ve never read one of her books … treat yourself. My favorite has to be “The Grass is Always Greener Over the Septic Tank”.

So here’s what I’ve come up with …

1. Never lend your car to anyone to whom you have given birth.

2. Never go to a doctor whose office plants have died.

3. It is fast approaching the point where I don’t want to elect anyone stupid enough to want the job. (on the US presidency)

4. Mothers have to remember what food each child likes or dislikes, which one is allergic to penicillin and hamster fur, who gets carsick and who isn’t kidding when he stands outside the bathroom door and tells you what’s going to happen if he doesn’t get in right away. It’s tough. If they all have the same hair color they tend to run together.

5. My theory on housework is, if the item doesn’t multiply, smell, catch on fire or block the refrigerator door, let it be. No one cares. Why should you?

6. All of us have moments in our lives that test our courage. Taking children into a house with white carpet is one of them.

7. I don’t know why no one ever thought to paste a label on the toilet-tissue spindle giving 1-2-3 directions for replacing the tissue on it. Then everyone in the house would know what Mama knows.

8. There is nothing more miserable in the world than to arrive in paradise and look like your passport photo.

9. People shop for a bathing suit with more care than they do a husband or wife. The rules are the same. Look for something you’ll feel comfortable wearing. Allow for room to grow.

10. I remember buying a set of black plastic dishes once, after I saw an ad on television where they actually put a blowtorch to them and they emerged unscathed. Exactly one week after I bought them, one of the kids brought a dinner plate to me with a large crack in it. When I asked what happened to it, he said it hit a tree. I don’t want to talk about it.

11. I never leaf through a copy of National Geographic without realizing how lucky we are to live in a society where it is traditional to wear clothes.

12. Everyone is guilty at one time or another of throwing out questions that beg to be ignored, but mothers seem to have a market on the supply. “Do you want a spanking or do you want to go to bed?” Don’t you want to save some of the pizza for your brother?” Wasn’t there any change?”

13. Have you any idea how many children it takes to turn off one light in the kitchen? Three. It takes one to say, “What light?” and two more to say, “I didn’t turn it on.”

I’m a scientist at heart. I think the reason it fits me is because of the way my brain works. I question. I wonder. I want answers from every angle of problems. I’m insatiably curious and very detailed oriented.

When people talk to writers you can bet one of the first questions they ask is “Where do you get your ideas?” Right? Come on, you’ve either been asked or wondered this question yourself. Even me … and I’m a writer. Sometimes it still amazes me how authors spin their stories.

But you know, I’m not sure it’s about WHERE the story comes from as much as HOW the story comes. I’m always curious how someone’s thought process works. It’s intriguing. Very few people actually think about thinking, therefore they can’t describe to you their thought process.

But I think about it a lot.

The first time I really remember thinking about this was in high school. We were studying the eye in biology and it got me wondering if we all really perceive the world the same. I mean, what if how I perceive colors isn’t how you “see” them. Now, stay with me here. What IF we all call the sky blue and the grass green because that’s what we’re taught. But what if the way it processes in your brain is different from me and if I could crawl in your head I’d see your sky was (my) yellow and your grass (my) brown. I mean, do we have any way of knowing whether or not we actually see the same color? or whether we just call it that color because it’s what we’re taught?

Yeah, so that’s a peek into my thought process. I wind these things around my brain all the time. Let me see if I can give you another insight.

Some authors write with music playing in the background. They choose soundtracks for their books. Fast pace music for action. Slower, sexier music for love scenes. It adds to their creativity. Me? Not so much. Music cuts right through my circuits. I need quiet to think straight. I can’t even listen to instrumental music because I hum along with it.

I think this is because I’m conscious of at least two channels going on in my head at one time. I don’t think this is unusual for women. It’s one of the reasons we can multi-task. We had to in order to survive and be sure our progeny were safe. We had to be able to pick herbs and hear the predator in the brush. We’re hard wired that way. So as I’m writing this I’m listening to a show (because the television is behind me). As long as no music comes on I can do both things. Many times there are more “channels” going on in my head. If I’m in a group of people I can usually keep up with three different conversations with little problem. When I was in school I would study while I was sleeping. Meaning I would write computer programs or do math problems in my dreams. It’s sort of like an author thinking of a story while sleeping.

So what’s with the music then? I’m not sure. When I sit quietly (and when I wake first thing in the morning) I’ve got songs rolling in my head. Not full songs, but parts of them. Usually country. (Hey, don’t laugh … I happen to like country music.) I think since this is rumbling in the background without me really thinking about it, when music is around me it pulls that channel front and center. It takes over everything and overrides every other channel in my head. Sort of like the volume gets turned up. I find I can’t listen to as many conversations if music is playing. Odd isn’t it?

I know I’m strange. How many people even think about this stuff? If you want to see how many channels you have try to say the alphabet while counting or reciting a poem in your head. Yeeeeah, maybe I shouldn’t admit I try that stuff all the time. It might be more than you want to know about me. Why don’t I just change the channel and go get some writing done?

I can’t help it. I’m a Twi-hard. Okay, new term that I don’t like, but the Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer … LOOOOVE! There are people who can’t get through the books and the usual assortment of nay-sayers, but I don’t happen to be one of them. I enjoyed every single one of the stories in this series. Predicatable? Sure. But then again they were aimed at the young adult reader not the *mumble grumble* aged mother of adult children.

I absolutely love the movies. I think they’ve stayed true to the series. And I am looking forward to the next movie ECLIPSE. And before you start wondering I will happily share with you … I’m team JACOB all the way! (And yes, I’ve read the whole series. What can I say? It’s the only thing Ms. Meyer got wrong in the series *vbg*) But I digress.

I saw NEW MOON a month after it was out with my sister-in-law, two neices and my daughters. And yes, I was the sighing woman in the seats when Taylor Lautner took his shirt off. Now don’t get all squicked out. I’m not lusting after the child, he’s younger than my son, but I do appreciate a nice work of art. (See this post.) Okay, maybe it was more than a sigh since my daughters completely slumped into their seats. LOL! And as much as I’m looking forward to ECLIPSE, I’m not sure I can convince my twenty-something daughter to join me. Anyone have a tweenager they’d like to let me borrow? I’m sure my sighs of appreciation over those werewolves will go completely unnoticed among the screaming in the theater.

So what about you? What do you think of the Twilight series? It’s okay, you can be honest, you’re not going to hurt my feelings and Stephenie Meyer certainly doesn’t have time to swing by my blog. Will you be among the theater goers this week taking in Eclipse?

Oh, and if you can’t wait … like me. Here’s the link to the official movie trailer.

I’ve often wondered about the phenomenon of the kiss. If two young people were never exposed to kissing, would it be a natural thing that would happen? I know they explored this in The Blue Lagoon (1980) a movie starring Brooke Shields, but the scene was kind of hokey. And since I’m a scientest at heart I had to go seeking some answers. Here’s what I found …

Believe it or not there’s a name for the science of kissing … philematology and it is widely studied. Nearly 90% of human societies do it and it seems I’m not the only one interested in finding out the whys of the action. Lots of scientists are trying to figure out why we get the warm, fuzzy feelings or the icky, creepy feelings when we’re locking lips with another.

Some anthropologists believe that kissing evolved from sniffing, as some indigenous cultures rub noses rather than kissing. It seems we have a very powerful musk gland right under our eyes, and each person has a distinct smell. Kissing got started by people smelling each other and they would rub across the nose. Touching the lips was a natural outgrowth.

The tongue and the lips are some of the most sensitive parts of our bodies. Both of them are packed with large amounts of nerve endings. Scientifically speaking, kissing releases chemical messengers in the brain called neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters attach to pleasure receptors in your brain creating feelings of passion, euphoria and elation. The same transmitters are released in high risk activities like skydiving or bungee jumping. It works the same way with passionate kissing, which is why your heart to beats faster and your breathing becomes deep and irregular.

Male saliva also holds testosterone which definitely affects the way a female reacts to her kissing partner. Some theorize that the testosterone makes the female more receptive to sex. In any case it appears feelings of like or love definitely affect the pleasure of the kiss as well.

There’s also the theory that kissing breaks the personal barriers and therefore creates an attachment to another person. This vulnerability heightens the chemical sensitivity well above normal levels, often blocking other types of synaptic chemical transmissions throughout the brain such as basic principles of reasoning. This may be way some people experience a surreal reality during and right after kissing that is created by purely animal like physical reactions rather than advanced means of humanistic logic.

This still doesn’t really answer my question as to whether humans not exposed to kissing would naturally do this. But I guess it really doesn’t matter. In the end I guess I’m just going to do what feels right. And trust me when I tell you, Mr. Pierce has perfected the kiss!

This week’s 13 is a list of things you just might not know.

1. The word “listen” contains the same letters as the word “silent”.

2. A ‘jiffy’ is an actual unit of time for 1/100th of a second.

3. “Almost” is the longest word in the English language with all the letters in alphabetical order. (These are pictures of letters and numbers found on butterfly wings.)

4. A hippopotamus can run faster than a man.

5. A snail can sleep for 3 years.

6. When the doll clothes are hard to put on, sprinkle with corn starch and watch them slide on.

7. A zebra is white with black stripes.

8. The cockroach is the fastest animal on 6 legs covering a meter a second.

9. Hummingbirds are the only animal that can also fly backwards.

10. All the planets in our solar system rotate anticlockwise, except Venus. It is the only planet that rotates clockwise.

11. The whip makes a cracking sound because its tip moves faster than the speed of sound.

12. In 1883 the explosion of the volcano Krakatau put so much dust into the earth’s atmosphere that sunsets appeared green and the moon appeared blue around the world for almost two years.

13. ‘Hippopotomonstrosesquippedaliophobia’ is the fear of long words. (Yeah, this picture has nothing to do with that, I just wanted to look at something drool-worthy.)

Last weekend we celebrated Beautiful Girl’s college graduation. It was tiring and amazing and long and wonderful. So this week I thought I’d share thirteen things about graduation.

1. Getting to the football stadium 2 hours early guarantees you both good seats and a wicked sore butt!


2. Beautiful Girl should have stood on the OTHER side of her veeeerrry tall friend.


3. Teenage boys really have only three wants. a) A refrigerator. b) A toilet. c) Space of their own. None of which Little Boy Blue had allllll weekend.


4. Pictures don’t really tell the whole story of how edgy six people get in a hotel room. Just saying …


5. Friends are the best part of college.


6. Receiving the college insignia medal isn’t the same as getting a signed diploma (which we haven’t seen yet).


7. Graduating from college doesn’t guarantee you can follow the directions “1 … 2 … 3 … jump”, no matter how many times you try.


8. There really is nothing to do in a hotel room for three days.


9. College Education – $80,000
    Family trip to graduation – $1,000
    Meeting the families of your daughter’s best friends – Priceless


10. My kids really do love each other. (Though the position of Baby Girl’s arm is a little questionable.)


11. School mascots don’t have to watch their hands. (Your right hand is where Mr. Minuteman?)


12. 2009 is a very good year.


13. Even at college graduations there’s eye candy. (Okay so he wasn’t there, but it was really hot …)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Today I’m part of the Valentine’s Candy Blog Tour through Liquid Silver Books! I hope you’ve been enjoying your tour through cyber land. And here’s the good news … I’m the last stop! You should have arrived from Jeanne Barrack’s blog. I hope you left a comment at each of the other nine blogs. Leave a comment here as well before midnight February 14 and you’ll be eligible to win an inbox full of ebooks!

I’d also like to help you enjoy Valentine’s Day. Because what’s a Valentine’s without cupid … 

or flowers …


some hearts skattered for your pleasure …


and some kisses …

Oh, and sheesh, I almost forgot the most important thing I’m supposed to offer today … the candy!

Oh, now did that satisfy your craving for candy? 

I’ve been so busy trying to finish up my latest story and skating around the internet trying to get some marketing things done. I haven’t had a spare minute to get anything ready for my man. How about sharing with me some of your favorite Valentine secrets/moments? It could be something you did for someone else or something romantic done for you. Come on … I want to hear it all! I’ll choose one of the stories to win a download of my most romantic book, The Healer’s Garden.

And I’ll announce both the grand prize winner and the winner of my download on Sunday morning!

If you’ve tripped on this and would like to participate on the whole tour. It all begins at the blog of Stephanie Adkins.

Enjoy your day!

Knock on the door and come on in! Do I have some candy and other treats for you!

Today, I’m coordinating my blog with several other Liquid Silver authors and offering you some real adult Halloween treats. We’re offering you “eye candy” and some wonderful ebooks.

Here’s my favorite candy to have with my morning coffee:

And then when I sit down for lunch I always enjoy a six pack with my sandwich:

Then I like to get some exercise in the afternoon and treat myself to more candy while I’m at it:

And after a hard day, I just like to settle in with a little candy to help me sleep better:

Sure I have a sweet tooth, but next to Dove chocolate, this is my favorite dessert! And I was happy to share those treats with you! Just leave me a comment and let me know when you like your candy best: in the morning, lunch, afternoon snack or in the evening.

I’ll be drawing one name at random from anyone who leaves me a comment before midnight Halloween night and they will win an e-copy of my futuristic erotic suspense novel, The Healer’s Garden.


If you want to trick-or-treat with Liquid Silver authors you should have arrived from Savanna Kougar’s blog and after you comment you should trick-or-treat at Jeanne Barrack’s blog.

If you visit all 9 blogs and comment on each of them, you will be eligible to win the grand prize: A wonderful inbox full of Liquid Silver e-books.

Enjoy your candy today! (If you get lost and can’t find your way, come on back and I’ll point you in the right direction!)