Tami Parker Fantasy Author & Other Duties as Assigned

CategoryLife

Say Hello to Moose

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I realized that I posted over on Facebook about my new kittencat, but never actually posted here!

I know, I am just as aghast as you.

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That’s my Moosey.

After Tiny’s stress-based health scare (he stopped eating, which is pretty alarming if you know how food-obsessed he is) I realized that he was lonely.

Like … waiting for me asleep against the front door when I got home from work lonely.

So I set out to find him a companion quickfast. I didn’t want to wait for another Siberian even though my allergies would have preferred it … I wanted to get him a friend in weeks, not months.

So I looked around and found Angel’s Wish, a cat rescue organization in the area with a LOT of cats. Once my application was approved, my mom came down and we evaluated dozens of felines.

My vet recommended a kitten to make the transition easier, so I tried to only look at fluffbeans under 2 years old.

Tiny is NOT a small cat, and I remember his playstyle being more of a full-body suplex, pounce/tackle/bunnykick sort of thing … so most of the really tiny kittens were also rejected.

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I needed someone who was big enough to handle Tiny and calm enough to transition nicely into the house. Also, my apartment only allows 2 cats, so I couldn’t take any bonded pairs.

This still left me with dozens of options. There was a gorgeous (bonded) seal-point siamese. There was a timid silver-black girl who is going to be flipping GORGEOUS when she grows up and her medium-haired coat leaves her with black mittens and a snowy body. There was a too-pushy calico. Two orange tabbies who were adopted before I could look at them. One orange tabby that I specifically asked to see but whose foster parent didn’t bring him in that day.

Nobody felt “right”.

Just as we turned to leave, another foster arrived with a whole passel of kittencats, and there he was. Twice as big as the other litter he was housed with, but the same age. Cool as a cucumber with the silliest gray “hat” I’ve ever seen and big brown eyes.

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His foster mom wanted to keep him (and I still send her emails with updates). He was the last surviving barn kitten — they think a raccoon got not only his siblings but also his mother.

He was born in May, which makes him the biggest dingdang kitten I have ever seen. He came with the name Moose and there wasn’t a chance in the world that I was going to change it.

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He transitioned into the house in less than 24 hours, despite Tiny hissing and growling at the start. 1 day, you guys. That’s so short that it surpasses “unbelievable” and saunters right into “magical” territory.

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He is still incredibly calm. And incredibly huge.

He snuggles under the blanket with me. He goads Tiny into play. He amuses HIMSELF with toys for hours.

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He’s still a little hand shy, but getting used to being petted. His ears and toe beans are multicolored.

He’s perfect.

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HelloFresh Update – Box 1

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Boxy BoxBox

This was my free box — thanks to a friend with a handy coupon.

The box itself was HEAVY and bigger than expected. When I opened it up, I saw that the cardboard was lined with something akin to silver bubble wrap.

Recipe cards and three brown paper bags were on top. Each bag was labeled with the meal it contained.

Below that I found the meat sandwiched neatly between two frozen “pillows”.

(Note: I gave my mom the box, lining, and frozen pillows when she was here this weekend. The pillows remained frozen overnight. Super cool.)

Recipe 1: Crispy Breaded Tilapia

I chose this recipe because cooking fish is still daunting to me, and I’ve not got much experience breading and frying things.

The sides were roasted asparagus and ciabatta toasts (with butter and chives).

I saved one of the two ciabatta rolls they sent me because I (correctly) assumed mom would want to make a sandwich with the other. I will say that I was surprised at how lovely the fresh chives were on a toasted ciabatta. I honestly thought it would have needed garlic or something.

The asparagus was good, but disappointingly slim. I ate ALL of it as part of my first meal and ended up pairing my leftover fish with some veggie bites I had in the freezer.

The fish itself was really good. A co-worker told me that if I would have let the breaded-but-uncooked fish sit for at least 5 minutes, the breading would have stuck to the final product a little better.

Even so, the panko was super tasty and I was pleased with the overall meal. A fun experience that I would never have bought the ingredients for and tried on my own.

Recipe 2: Cherry Drizzled Pork Chops

HUGE win. Super delicious and tasty, and fun to make to boot!

The only downside is that one of the ingredients was missing. There should have been a little packet of soup base to use in the cherry drizzle sauce, but it was nowhere to be found.

The couscous side was very easy to make (though if I make it again, I’ll saute the shallots before adding them to the mix) and turned out zingy and fresh.

The pork chops turned out PERFECT. Delightfully crisp on the outside and the cherry sauce? MAGNIFIQUE.

I added the pork chops and cherry sauce to my recipe cards.

Recipe 3: Winner Winner Chicken Orzo Dinner

The side dish was a big big win, but the chicken itself was uninspiring.

Alas, the downside this time was the chicken itself. One of the breasts was off-color and both of them had … an odor. We rinsed them, sniffed again, and decided not to chance it.

Luckily, I live across the street from a butcher shop, so we got some replacements there.

The chicken was just butterflied and fried with spices. If I do this again, I’m slicing, marinating in italian dressing, and frying THAT up. OM NOM.

However, I bought the recipe because I wanted to try the orzo and I was NOT disappointed.

What a LOVELY texture and shape the orzo has!

Plus, they had me roast zucchini and tomato … then sprinkle panko, mozzarella, and parmesan over top and broil until toasty.

I then added THAT glorious, cheesy, crispy mess back to the orzo and you guys?

*kisses fingertips*

You bet your bottom dollar that recipe got added to my box.

Another Box?

Yup! I want at least one more … plus, I emailed in about the chicken and the missing soup base and they gave me a $30 rebate.

I mean. They addressed the email to “Rick” but I still got the rebate, so I’m not complaining. 😉

The next box isn’t for another couple of weeks (I paused the next few until I found a week with three awesome-looking recipes) so expect another post sometime after Halloween.

StitchFix Update – Box 2

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Box 2 hath arrived!

I lowered the price point on this one to the minimum for all categories.

I got:

1) A navy knit top with a heavy lace hem and a string/tie in the back.

Nice, flattering, good fit, LOVED the lace … but the tie tangled in my hair and was a super duper no-go. Alas.

2) A black knit top with a twist in the back.

Boring in the front and the fun twist was totally hidden by my hair. No-go.

3) A heavy white long-sleeved shirt with a HUGE rope/string lace-up the front. 

Huge rope/string was super awkwardly huge. Like … as wide as my thumb huge. Also, the neckline it was lacing went waaaay down, so it would have needed an undershirt. No-go.

4) An ADORABLE silk kimono top in a blue and gold pattern.

Flattering and amazing … but every three steps, it gossammer’d its way off my shoulders. SO SAD. But I had to let it go. Practicality first!

5) A clingy/stretchy black long sleeved cover-up.

Originally I didn’t think I’d like it, but it was SUPER comfy and the hemline does this flattering swoopy curve thing that involves POCKETS so … yeah. I kept it.

Another Box?
Yes, but it may be my last one. It’s been fun, but also expensive and I’m just not a clotheshorse. I’m fine wearing a $15 top I got from J.C. Penney that I might see someone else wearing … or even a $5 top from a resale shop, without cringing or shame.

I did request to get two bottoms in this next box and specified that I like boot cut. We shall see how they do … I’ve been told sometimes they hit the jackpot on pants that fit, and I hate pants shopping.

So! One more box for sure, but perhaps the last one. We shall see!

Subscription Services – HelloFresh and StitchFix

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Yup. I’ve done it. Dipped my toes in the water and am trying two subscription services. The temperature in the nether realm has dropped dramatically.

But I figured, hey, why not TRY them, eh?

StitchFix

StitchFix* is an online clothing service. Every month (or whatever cycle works for you), you pay them $20 and they send you a box of clothes based on your preferences. You have three days to try on the clothes and decide if you want to buy any. Return any you don’t want in their prepaid shipping bag. If you choose to buy? Your $20 paid is deducted from the price of the item.

Preferences

When I say “your preferences” I super duper mean it. They have an exhaustive wizard to walk you through what you do and do not like in clothing (as well as how much you want to pay for pants vs accessories, for example).

In addition to that wizard, there’s also a textbox where you can add custom-worded detail.

In addition to that, they recommend you give them a link to a pinterest board with clothes you like.

In addition to THAT, they ask you if you have any requests specific to the next box — “I have a wedding coming up, send me some dresses to try!” or “I’m running low on tops, send mostly those. But no sweaters.”

Whatever you want, they try to get it.

And they learn as you rate the box you got, so theoretically you go from liking one or two items to liking all of them after a while.

All without “going shopping”.

I’ve got coworkers who use it, and EVERY single time they wear a stitchfix item, they get compliments.

So I took the plunge.

My First Box Contents

The item I kept from the last box is a transparent blue pattern overshirt with a navy undershirt. The sleeves have a neat button-pull-back effect and are about 3/4.

They also sent me an almost identical top in red that I was sorely tempted by because the pattern was more broken up … but blue suits me slightly better, so I chose the other.

I also got a heavy knit cover-up sweater with a wonderful scooping hem that I unfortunately didn’t need.

There was also a top with really cool large buttons up the back and a super soft gray sweater with an asymmetrical hem and a cowl neck.

All excellent choices based on my preferences, just a lot pricier than I was expecting … so I lowered my price point for the upcoming box and we’ll see what the next one looks like. =]

It’s nice to feel like I’ve got this tailored, unique box headed my way with little effort on my part, but I’m still tight-fisted enough with my money that this may or may not stick. We shall see.

HelloFresh

HelloFresh* is a weekly menu service. The lowest option is 3 meals for 2 people at $60, which ain’t cheap.

It IS however, very cheap indeed when a friend has been there long enough to get freebie coupons. *wink*

Preferences

So I signed up. The process to get started here was much easier than StitchFix … but then again, I’m less opinionated about my food than I am my clothing, so that makes sense.

I chose the non-vegetarian option, then selected from a variety of meat options.

After that, I was presented with a menu of possibilities for next week’s box. They had pre-selected three for me, but I can change those and choose my preferred three from their limited menu (including one “premium” option that would have a small upcharge) until Friday.

Meal Selection

I aaaaalmost swapped out a chicken orzo meal for the site-favorite southwestern stuffed bell peppers but decided against it at the last minute. The magic of beef/cheese/bell peppers is already known to me. chicken and creamy orzo, on the other hand, I have never tried.

Next week, I’ll be getting all of the ingredients and the recipes to make “Winner Winner Chicken Orzo Dinner”, cherry-glazed pork chops over couscous, and breaded tilapia.

ALL of the recipes looked really good, and I’m excited to try this one out. It’s spendier than if I just bought the stuff myself … but honestly, my cooking has taken a bit of a nosedive lately and I’m interested in getting shook out of my comfort zone a little.

Footnotes

* The links here are referral links. Just in case you decide to try a system, if you use the specific links I sent, I’ll get a wee boost on my account.

The HelloFresh link includes a discount on your first box.

No pressure and no big deal, just wanted to be up-front about it. =]

 

Show Me Your Vampire

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Lazy Vampires

I think one of the things that really bugs me about popular media portrayal of vampires is how often they seem to waste their time.

They’re immortal, right? Many of the popular ones are hundreds of years old. Yet when we meet them, they seem like teenagers or normal people, with no sign of having taken that most precious gift — unlimited time — and using it to better themselves.

And then I think to myself, “Heh, so they’re doing what most people do. Procrastinating. Not starting. Not finishing. Swinging from one day to the next watching Netflix or playing video games.”

Ouch, I says to myself. But I’m not wrong.

Apples

Perry and I have a shorthand communication tool that we used, based on an ancient Cracked article he sent me many moons ago.

“Making apples”

There’s nothing wrong with eating apples. With consuming media and entertainment. Heck, those who produce content would be nothing without fans.

But if you feel called or compelled to create. If you define yourself as a creator — a writer, an artist, a musician — there IS something wrong with never actually producing apples.

If I am not writing, I am not a writer.

There’s wiggle room in there, of course. But I’m sure as hell not fooling myself when I say I’m “thinking about writing” and weeks fly by without any actual wordcount happening. I know what I’m doing. I know that fear is what is keeping me from making apples. Hell, I even know how to conquer that fear — by giving it the swift kick in the teeth of sitting down and actually writing.

And yet.

Daydream Time

So I found myself judging vampires for their laziness and I want to ask yourself some questions.

If you knew you could live forever (and let’s be generous here and say that you won’t be murdered by monster hunters or turn into a bloodthirsty beast with no self control. Let’s assume this forever looks an awful lot like your today …. but maybe you’ve got ten million dollars starting capital to work with.

And why not, let’s go ahead and give you a hearty dollop of motivation. Your mental health issues? Gone. You have the energy and the stick-tuitiveness to enable you to actually take advantage of this opportunity.

You’re rich, healthy, and young forever as long as you don’t like … fall chest-first on a silver-tipped stake or something.

What do you do?

What do your days look like? Do you have a job? Start a company? Invent something? Learn to play the accordion? Finally take those yodeling lessons you’ve always yearned for?

Go ahead and daydream your perfect you. Mine can play multiple musical instruments. She writes novels and short stories and rides a horse like she was born on it. She speaks a dozen languages fluently enough to travel the world. She cooks and bakes and has a square-foot garden the size of a football field, filled with flowers and vegetables and trees and wild birds.

That’s what my vampire would be like.

Bringing it Back To Earth

Now that you know that. Now that you have painted this obviously impossible picture, because you don’t have enough years in your life to do all those things …

… are there any small steps you could make in your life now that would get you closer to those goals? Any portions of that picture that are more precious than others? Any piece of it worth being brave enough to take those steps?

Show Me Your Vampire

I’d love to know what your vampire looks like.

What big risks would you take if your success was guaranteed?

Are there any small risks you can take today?

Product Review – Seatbelt Adjuster

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Okay, this is a silly thing to give an entire blog post to, but I’m doing it anyway.

The Masterlink Seatbelt Adjuster is a small plastic clip that attaches to the waist portion of a seatbelt and offers a little flap so that you can tuck the shoulder strap into it.

(Please note I linked to an amazon search for it because I only paid $6 for a two-pack of black ones and the prices seem all over the board now.)

As a short lady, I cannot imagine how much this has made my driving life easier. Even having to re-do the shoulder strap every time I sit down is minimal compared to the lack of choking/cutting pressure on the side of my neck from the shoulder strap.

I gave the second one to my mom and she reports similar results — took a week or so to get used to slipping the strap through the latch and now neither of us can imagine driving without it.

Inexpensive and useful. My second favorite combo. (If it was also adorable it would get extra points).

 

 

What are you loving right now?

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Books, TV, movies, Netflix, Hulu, Youtube, board games, Escape Rooms … lay it on me. I want to know the things so good you’re glad to spend your precious free time on them. <3

Books

I recently started the InCryptid series by Seanan McGuire. I’m liking them a lot (and it’s one of her earliest series, so it’s a good place to get started, I think.) She’s a marvelous author and I can’t think of anything I’ve read by her that I wouldn’t recommend.

TV

I’m working my way through the last season of the Great British Baking show on PBS. (I won’t bother with a description, I’m sure all of you except Faith are eager for me to stop gushing about this show. /wink )

Party Game

I also picked up a board game called Escape The Room: The Secret of Dr. Gravely’s Retreat. SO much fun, especially for smallish groups of 3-5. Granted, once you’ve played it, you know the secrets … but that just means I get to play hostess for other groups of friends and supply clues. =]

Movies

I really enjoyed Spiderman: Homecoming. I feel like the recent Marvel Universe movies have been spending more and more time in dark and gloomy places. S:H brightens the world up a little with his wit and banter and I could not have enjoyed that more. The overall storyline dovetails neatly into the Marvel Universe without disrupting or being required. I was very pleased, like finding a lovely novella by an author you love in a world you adore.

Your Turn!

Decorating Rivendell

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I know, I know, I promised this post AGES ago, but I’ve been lazy. (see how I didn’t hide there?)

You can look at all the photos in a separate photo album here.

First View – Walking in from the Front Door

Front door - Before

front door - after

 

A nice before-and-after setup that I can’t promise to continue. /wink

I don’t want to go into great detail here, because everything is easier to see in upcoming pictures. First, let’s look at the kitchen.

The Kitchen

 

Kitchen - before

kitchen-after

Slightly different angle on the after picture, but that’s okay. You can see my mint-to-turquoise theme pretty strongly here. (You can also see that I’m thawing some turkey and my rice cooker is making my oatmeal for breakfast, but we’ll ignore that for now.)

Notice instead the happy teakettle, the turquoise frying pan, the super cool shell-patterned hand towel, the teal spatula assortment (in an owl-shaped glass jar, for the sharp-eyed), the hilarious crocodile guarding my sink sponge, and the spritely tree inviting you to look into the living room, which we’ll see in more detail in just a moment.

That rice cooker, by the way? MAGICAL. I splurged and bought a slightly expensive (but still small enough for one person) rice cooker. It features fuzzy logic cooking AND it sings to me when it’s done.

I may or may not have decided to splurge more based on the singing than the fuzzy logic, though I do appreciate that it also cooks things like beans and oatmeal.

The Dining Room (aka, the little bit of area beneath the stairs).

dining room - before

dining room - after

Hooray, a table! Let’s pretend for a moment that I actually eat on this thing instead of just hanging out on the balcony with Tiny and eating off my lap like a savage, shall we?

This cute little two-seater used to be our table many moons ago, and my mom used it for a long while after we upgraded. She wasn’t using it any more, and it’s just perfect for this little nook of a Dining Room. The old red pads moved upstairs (you’ll see those in a minute) and I replaced the downstairs ones with some powdery-teal ones that match better. Tree picture over the table to symbolize family and life (or maybe just to be pretty, who are you to judge?)

Hanging shoe organizer is AWESOME and strongly recommended. I got this one from Ikea.

You’ll also see my key/badge/clutch hanger there on the wall — if I panned more to the left, you’d see the front door there. Very handy.

The Living Room

the living room

looking back to the living room

the weird cranny

I had a before picture of the living room, but it was just an empty carpeted square, so I didn’t waste time posting it.

The after pics are where it’s at.

I’ll start in the middle, because why the hell not. =]

That bookcase used to be a boring old brown. My mom bought it for me when I was still in high school, and I’ve had it with me ever since.

It got painted blue before I moved here, and I absolutely love everything about it. So many good memories in that shelf. (Y’all are all book lovers, I’m sure you understand.)

It’s holding what remains of my book collection (which will continue to dwindle as I read/reread and thin out the herd). It’s also got a few knickknacks and whooziwhatsits on it, including a hand-painted custom Harold nerf gun from a certain Canadian we know and love.

To the right of that, we see the soul-hugging chair — still huge, still paisley, and still romancing everyone who sits in it. The blanket on the ottoman is a hand-made gift from my niece and mom and it is SO WARM.

Tiny side table to the right of that holding books to be read and a box to hold bookmarks and hide stray ponytail holders from a certain mischievous kitten.

You’ll see said kitten ignoring the giant cat tree in the corner in favor of peering creepily at me over the edge of the ottoman.

Just behind him is one of the two random turquoise leather chairs found at Habitat for Humanity. Too inexpensive and perfect not to pick up, and they add both seating and some semblance of propriety to what is otherwise mostly a room filled with toys. =]

Above the bookshelf is my keystone piece — a cheap print of Van Gogh’s Almond Blossom painting. It validates and deepens all the teals and blues I’m using, and I love it so much that it’s also the cover for my iPad and Kindle.

On the wall just next to the balcony door, there’s a little record player on a stand. It makes me happy, even though my collection is woefully tiny at the moment. My favorite record is “What if Mozart Wrote Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” and I’m also the proud owner of the sountrack for Westworld (in a really creepy-cool “milk white” edition color). Yes, it is exactly as awesome as you think it is.

Steampunk butterfly print on the wall is from Ursula Vernon, and yes it is why there’s a mechanical moth in Choose.

The room also has this weird nook just at the base of the stairs. I’ve got my internet-making-machines there (because I have no choice) as well as the litterbox and tiny vacuum. (that machine is AWESOME. I got it from Costco on sale and it runs on BATTERIES. No cables.)

Before we leave the living room, let’s turn back and take a peek towards the kitchen, where you’ll see Sir Reginald Von Bartlesby’s fish tank. Smaller than he’s used to, but plenty big enough for a single betta. Plus, he’s got three different hidey-holes, and he loves them all. Still sasses at me in the morning when he knows it’s time for him to be fed, and he follows me through the kitchen when I’m cooking. =]

Also, badass owl hanging out on top of the cupboards is still one of my favorite owls. (There’s also a neat cement planter owl out on the balcony, but it was too sunny to show up on the pics. Heavy as a beast, but very very cool)

The Stairs

going up stairs - before

The stairs - after

One before picture (the owl was the first thing I moved, so he shouldn’t technically be in that picture, but he’s such a ham).

The main point of these pics is to show you the flowers and ivy a little better … but also to show you the second leather chair waiting in the wings for someone to need him. <3

The Bedroom

the bedroom - before

the shelves - before

looking upstairs - after

the bed

the shelves - after

The previous tenant left those shelving units for me and you bet your boots I said yes when they asked if I wanted them.

Here’s where you can see that I invested in a loft bed (I super duper love it, but making the bed is an exercise in frustration, so you’ll have to excuse the nonsense on that upper bunk. In my defense, the blanket is a queen and the bed is a twin, and if you think that’s silly, you clearly don’t toss and turn as much as I do at night. I have ALL THE BLANKET.)

The bottom half of the bunk is a full-size futon. I toyed with the idea of having it be a desk instead, but this worked out better (and was actually available to purchase from Big Lots instead of buying something sight unseen or HUGE). Now I have a comfy “tv” watching station and a place for a guest to stay the night. You may be asking yourself why anyone would choose the bottom bunk when they could have the soul-hugging chair, but it’s already been used once when mom, niece, and nephew all stayed the night. So there.

And yes, that stuffed dog is exactly as soft and comfy as he looks. His name is Rufus T. Justice and he’s the law in these parts. When he says “cuddle,” you say “yes, sir” and you will like it.

Those shelves are filled with tons of barely-organized art supplies and hobby stuff. And games. And random stuffed animals.

I’m looking forward to the ukulele classes that start this week!

Also, see that sand timer? That’s not just for show. It’s a 45 minute sand timer and when I sit down to write, I flip that guy over. I cannot stop writing until it is done. I can whine and stomp and mope and flail, but until the last grain of sand is gone, I am not allowed to do anything that isn’t directly related to writing.

She’s a hard taskmistress, but she is fair.

The Office aka The Walls in the Bedroom

the office

the murder board

I felt like separating the “office” from the bedroom in photos, even though it’s all the same room.

Two monitors hooked up both to my computer and my PS4 means I have many options when it comes to entertainment here. (and the futon opposite it means I can play the PS4 comfortably)

The white chair is there because it’s light, portable, and seven billion times more comfortable for long-term typing than my fun little ergonomic fellow. Also, he’s open with a pillow on him so that Tiny has as many options for sleeping surfaces as possible. (yes, he runs the show. No, I am not ashamed of this).

On the wall, you’ll see a gaming poster gifted me by some Canadian fellow. (/wink). Also a Wonder Woman poster, because she is amazing and the new movie was well worth watching. Seriously. There’s unapologetic thigh jiggle. Hall-A-Freaking-Lue-Ya.

Ahem. There’s also a fan that somehow survived all of my various “I own too much stuff” purges and actually came from my trip to Japan when I was in high school.

The last pic is my plotting board — affectionately known as my “Murder Board” because the previous incarnation had red thread tying together various pushpins for plotting purposes. It looked like one of those crazy boards you see in police procedurals all the time.

I use it to do my story plotting according to the 7 Point Plot Structure, as well as keep tabs on pending questions I need to answer and various other things. Hopefully none of you can actually read those notes, because they contain spoilers for the next book I’m writing.

Also, yes, both Tiny and I use that side table to boost our way to the top bunk. Graceful swans, we are not, but it gets the job done. The handles are feathers, because I’m an adult and I can replace boring old store-bought handles if I want to. Even if that means multiple trips to a Menards because screw length matters, and when that doesn’t work, I just hold the last quarter-inch in place with bubble gum. (In the distance, I high-five MacGuyver)

That’s It!

I know I forgot to mention or show things. The bathroom is pretty neat, and my mouthwash is in a fancy glass jar with a cork stopper. The closet is actually HUGE — not just walk-in, but with shelves all along the top and in the back (where I’m keeping extra blankets and bedding for the most part).

I really, really like it, and I hope you do, too! Feel free to ask any questions!

Banish Flimsy Nails Forever With This One Inexpensive Cream

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Okay, despite how clickbaity that title is?

… I’m absolutely here to tell you about this cream.

It’s called Healthy Hoof and you can buy it on Amazon.

It is not expensive.

It IS magical.

I bought it less because of my nails (I had long ago resigned myself to floppy nails for life) but rather because I’d developed some rather destructive nervous habits with the dry skin on my hands.

So I picked this stuff up to try it.

I keep it at my desk at work. A few times I week, I remember I have it and dollop a tiny bit on my dry skin and nails. It takes about a minute longer than I would like before it sinks in and isn’t lotion-y/slimy feeling … but it’s totally worth it.

It took a while for the nail effect to be obvious, but this is the longest, healthiest, strongest, and most magical my nails have EVER been.

If you or someone you love suffers from flimsy, floppy, too-soft nails, I recommend it. It also totally helped for my dry/cracked skin problem. But the nail thing is the stuff of unicorn daydreams.

Real Life

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We interrupt this internet frivolity to bring you news from real life.

Many of you are already aware that Steven and I are getting a divorce.

A loving, mutually-agreed-upon, for the best for both of us kind of separation … but it’s still the Big D.

Absolutely everyone has extended offers to help and be here for me no matter what I need. Because you are all amazing and awesome people.

And I promise to accept those offers of help when I need or want them. I do. I am not going to shut myself up in my home and shrink into myself. I’ve accepted an offer to go to a symphony that I otherwise would not have done. I am making plans to do things with people. I am mentally making plans to take a trip to Japan after the house sells. Maybe even New York and Canada. Maybe a cruise.

It’s going to be good, but it’s not going to be easy. I know that.

That being said, some details from my side of the fence.

1. It will take three months for the divorce to be final. There’s a mandatory waiting period for the paperwork.

2. I will be changing my name back to my maiden Parker. Tami Jean Parker.

3. TavenMoore.com and TamiMoore.com will remain domains I own for a while, after which point I may phase out TavenMoore. Steven will remain a trusted and super-valued partner in my writing adventures, just not to the same extent.

4. I’m considering TJ Parker as a pseudonym for writing. The domain isn’t available for poor folk like myself to buy, so I’m not sure what my new web space will look like. Suggestions are welcome. Maybe whiskerwing.com?

5. Tiny will be moving with me. Ollie will be heading on adventures with Steven.

6. I am moving into a cute little loft apartment next Friday. Most of my stuff is packed up and I have a moving company hired. Those who offered a strong back are off the hook — I’m taking more than I expected to, and I value your friendship more than the cost of a moving company, lol.

7. I am hoping to get a dog after a year. My current lease does not allow canine pets, so I have a year of buffer before I can make the call. I’d be shocked if I didn’t wholeheartedly invite a pupper into my life though. Expect blogged adventures looking through shelters (or just a single post if I fall in love immediately).

8. I’m keeping the blog. Expect an even more hodge-podgey mess of topics.

9. The Camelot house is going up for sale moooost likely the first week of July. It is an absolutely fantastic, gorgeous, magical forest of a home. If you know anyone wanting to move to the Madison Area, let me know and I’ll make sure they get the details. I’m sure the new owners will adore it as much as we did. (moreso, because we did a lot of upgrades and repairs they won’t have to worry about).

If there’s anything in particular you want me to make sure to blog about during the transition, let me know and I shall try to oblige.

 

Tami Parker Fantasy Author & Other Duties as Assigned

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