Blogland Lane Logo by our own Tessa Edwards

Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Holidays Begin....

My Mother's House, 2009
Thanksgiving is over and I am thinking of how I want to spend the three weeks until Christmas: who I want to spend time with, what I want to cook or bake, how I will give presents and to whom.
I like Christmas. Last night I made up some "holiday" cards from photographs I've taken, including this one from my Mother's house a few weeks ago. If any of my friends on Blogland Lane would like a Christmas card from me, just shoot me an email ( with your address and it will be my pleasure to send you one.
This is the time of year when I look backward and forward at the same time. I feel joy and sadness at the same time. But there is always one constant: love. I love deeply and sometimes I've been reckless. But I believe in love, and I wouldn't have it any other way.
And by the way, how are we on Blogland Lane going to celebrate the holidays together?
Any ideas?

My last post was rather sad so I thought I'd be more cheerful today and share some exciting news with you - sales of CUT SHORT have gone intergalactic! If you don't believe me, here's the photographic proof:

A dalek buying Cut Short from Leigh Russell and paying cash!
And here comes a jedi. He also bought Cut Short . . .

Spiderman wanted to buy a copy of Cut Short but he doesn't have any pockets so he didn't have any money to pay for it . . . Same problem with the stormtroopers . . .

but the pirate had plenty of loot . . .

So, how is my spelling.....

I thought I had decent spelling skills, but still, I liked the spellcheck on the post engines.  Is that gone, or am I just not seeing it?  I like my crutches.  Turns out, I didn't need it because you just were not paying close attention anyway!  Neither am I, apparently.

From Cmabrigde Uinervtisy:
It deosn't mttaer in waht oredr teh ltteers in a wrod are.  Teh ohny iprmotnat tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in teh rghit pclae.  The rset can be a tatol mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm.  This is baesuce the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but teh wrod as a wlohe.  Amzanig, huh!

What is really amazing is how fast I read this, which was just about normal speed.  Still, where is that spellchecker? 

kj, Debra Kay....did you hide it?  Come on, really.  Give it up.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Exciting News

I'm very excited to see CUT SHORT reviewed on the US Publishers Weekly BEST BOOKS OF 2009 list, the only title to be starred in the Mass Market category. You can read the review here

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I know there are a lot of Americans here on Blogland Lane and although we don't celebrate Thanksgiving in Australia, I think our Christmas is a similar occasion. Everyone comes home, celebrates, eats too much and gives thanks. So to all of you in the US, take care of yourselves, enjoy the company of family and friends, be thankful that you have an online community and those you love around you. Take a break from the hectic world outside and share good times together. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! Who knows, in a year or two, you might have a guest from down under at your table.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Art Box Exchange

Remember (it's on the side bar too) December 5th I'll create a post to post up our creations from the Art Box Exchange.  I can't wait to see what you all did with your stash items.  My head is spinning with ideas and dreams-and that's in a good way.



Friday, November 20, 2009

Give It Up!!!! by Emily Rabbit

To my neighbors: You may not know Emily Rabbit. She writes on my blog once a week and is too feisty for her own good. But this week she is handling our very own Wishes and Dreams Foundation. This post appears on my own blog too. Love kj

Hello Everyone, it's me, Emily, finally. I had to wait for kj to show off her pictures of Santa Fe but here I am now. For one more time only I am going to be very polite and sweet and keep my promise to do something nice for this Wishes & Dreams Foundation that kj likes. After this I will be my whiny and complaining self again, ready to remind you how to cry deep from your stomach and kick your feet in the air when you want your own way.
When I mentioned that I am doing a good deed a few weeks ago, I got some nice responses so now I am here to collect the money and see who else wants to be nice with me this one time.
.There are three ways you can contribute, remember?
1. kj knows a very smart 13 year old girl who is in foster care and has had a hard time and wants acting lessons. If you like this idea, the best thing to do is to send kj a check. If you email her, she will send you her address.
Or if you have this thing called Paypal, you can send money to kj's email from there.
Or you can order a copy of kj's book right here on her blog at the sidebar and she will donate $10 to where ever you want. If you don't want the book you can order it anyway and instead of sending it to you kj will donate all the money except the tax.
Or it gets even better. But you have to wait a minute until I finish with this list and you will see.
2. The other thing you can do instead is to help this doctor named Maithri who works in Swaziland Africa and helps children who don't have mothers or fathers and need everything, even clean water
If you want to donate here, you should go to and you can give whatever you want right there.
.3. And third, you don't need money for this one. Just do something nice for someone and don't get caught. But you have to tell me or kj what you did because it will give someone else an idea of how to do something nice, maybe even me..
And don't forget: for everyone who makes even a dollar contribution I will have a drawing to see who wins and the prize will be that I, Emily V. V. Rabbit, will be a guest writer on your blog AND I will write about whatever subject you want me to write about ..
Now wait until you hear this!!!!!
Do you know my best friend Marianne? Well she and kj's friend Caroline have both offered one of their original paintings to be auctioned off to the highest bidder.We are talking about very good art here--see for yourself:
This is Marianne's mandala. It is a big one 10,6 x 13,8” (27 x 35 cm) Watercolor, ink micron pen glitter and pearls. kj already has a bid of $ 50 for this so you have to pay more than that. But I can tell you with my own eyes that this mandala that my best friend Marianne painted is worth a year's supply of jellybeans at least, plus they bring you good luck. So if you want it you can have it plus you will be doing something nice. kj says to tell you that the highest bidder decides where the money should go, to kj's client or to Dr. Maithri.
TA DA! And now for Caroline's painting!!!!
It will be a surprise painting but here are some examples of how fantastic she is..If you get Caroline's painting you can talk to her about what you might like and what she will paint something for you. I bid my $15 on this already and can you believe it that kj bid $ 25, which I thought was very selfish of her so I really don't want her to win so I hope someone else will bid more than $ 25.
I will leave the bidding open for 48 hours, which around here means until Sunday night. I know there are alot of good causes to give money too but I am the only RABBIT doing this and I think that is a good reason all by itself for you to help out, besides it isn't every day that I stop whining and complaining and do this instead, so maybe if this works out you will end up being a good influence on me, which maybe will be good but then again, maybe I'm better off kicking my feet and crying from my stomach.....
Some of you asked if you could send presents along with contributing money. kj says that is fine. In addition to her 13 year old, there is 4 year old Angelina, 5 year old Xavier, and 10 year old Daria. And there is 48 year old Alice who only has one pair of clothes. kj says she looks like she is a size 16.
And don't forget, it doesn't have to be money, it can just be a good deed. I hope some new people and maybe even a few rabbits will join in. My Uncle Bunny might be able to--he has money from selling rabbit pellets, remember?
So that's all I have to say today. Oh, one more thing. kj said if I get 25 comments on her blog she will pay me my $ 10 this week. And if I do and she pays, I am going to buy jellybeans. I am. I don't care if you think I should contribute that $ 10 too. I've done enough. I am only a little bunny and here I am raising money and hoping for the best. I think that's enough, don't you agree?
Next week I might teach Margaret how to play.
Sincerely yours,
Emily Rabbit

invisible woman

Does anyone know why my picture doesn't appear when I comment on someone else's post?

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Poetry from 53A

Motes of dust on specks of sand
joined as shoreline of land
waiting at the water’s edge of God's mercy,
our gathering place.

Alone, I am, in this gathering place.
My sin my own, an offense not to be compared to any other's.
All insult of sin so great, a rejection of God's friendship,
infinite goodness and grace.

Feeling love for Him, how could I not love myself?
Neither is possible alone.
Loving patience, forgiving and infinite -
His only demand? Embrace good, reject evil.

White room, adorned in nothingness, becomes my slate,
my learning place, of recognition.
Sins un-recounted, forgiveness a plea. Accepting God's mercy,
we unwrap His gift of our uniqueness.

Mote on dust -
Dust on sand grain -
Grain in a sea of sand grains -
Alone but known
and, heard.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Bushman's Tale

A journal was lying on the table next to the teapot and biscotti that are always on the porch overlooking the harbor.  Renee had not yet returned so I sat down to wait, poured a cup of tea and opened the book's soft leather bindings.  I turned the pages and saw a luminous watercolor sketch of a baobab tree at sunset as little golden grains of sand dropped onto my lap.  A note written across the bottom of the page read, ...."evening on the savannah near the tree of the above world".

Turning the page, I found myself smiling at a family of Kalahari bushmen and felt the hot savannah breeze on my skin as I was pulled forward and offered a place by the fire.  Soft laughter and village voices chatter in a language that includes pops and clicks and fills the space with happy sounds.  The smells of animal fat sizzlling on hot stones and smoke from acacia wood embers envelop us.  In the distant reaches of the grassland, sounds of waking nocturnal predators chase the sun loving animals to safe places for the night. 

Khoi, the family head, has just finished a rock drawing that he will place in front of his hut so that his spirit guides, the elephants, will always feel welcome among those who respect and care for the land and all living things.  Time ceases to have meaning.  This is so real, yet has such a dreamlike quality.  I sense that I will see this same piece of rock art that I touch here now, in a museum tomorrow and know that it was done 60,000 years ago.  The village elder places himself near the fire and everyone gathers to hear their beginning story.  This quiet little man still speaks to the animals and is the most powerful among the people, still in touch with creation to the depths of his spiritual being.

He tells the story of people and animals living together in the before time.  This was a place of light and happiness and perfect understanding.  Food and water were always abundant.  This had always been true.  One day, the great master, Kaang, told them he was preparing the above world for them and filling it with all the things they would ever need.  Then the people and animals climbed up to the above ground, under the tree of the world and saw all that was theirs.  Kaang told them the one thing they could never do was start a fire and they bound themselves to this promise.  But later, it became dark and cold and the people could not see in the dark.  They were afraid and built a fire so that they could see, but it frightened the animals and they ran away.  Fear came to live in them and they could no longer understand the animals.  But, the spirits of men and women could fly into the animals and share their spirits.  The elder reminded them that this would always be part of their memory.

Not far behind us, a family of elephants padded closer.  Little dust clouds blossomed around each huge foot.  The ground gently trembled as the weight of so many tremendous animals circled the camp.  Behind me, I could fee the presence of a huge shape and smell the musky odor of sun baked hide.  I looked down to see two huge ivory tusks glide by on either side of me and felt a massive head rest against my back.  With the lightest touch imaginable, a trunk curled around my shoulder holding a thick bunch of white baobob flowers.  I leaned my cheek against the trunk in greeting and turned to look into Indlovu's eyes, a patriarch of immense age and true understanding. I think there is a message I am to deliver, but I can't remember what it is.

Renee is smiling at me from across the table.  Near her teacup stands a multifaceted crystal vase whose prisms shoot rainbow colors in all directions.  Into this she is happily arranging a thick bunch of huge white flowers that I have never seen before.  The scent is like honey and ginger and sunshine.  I will have to remember to ask where she got them.  It may be that I once knew the answer,  but everything is a little hazy.  But, I am absolutely sure of one thing.

 She is the Pathfinder.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Has anyone got a hammock, swinging gently in a warm breeze, in soft moonlight . . . so I can fall asleep under the stars. I'm so tired.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thankgiving Stuffing

Here it is: a world class Thanksgiving Stuffing Recipe.
I hope you enjoy it. - UPDATE—Fire guts Ladner Village businesses - UPDATE—Fire guts Ladner Village

Early Sunday morning, my sleepy little village was rudely awakened by fire engines screaming down the main drag towards the small core of businesses. The fire gutted two places, Mario's Bistro, Heritage Home Furniture, and the Dragonfly Gallery. I frequent all of these stores, especially the furniture one - it's where we recently bought our new dining room furniture and where I had my family room furniture made.

Firemen swarmed the area, sQUirting their hoses to contain the blaze. And when I drove by on Monday, firemen and insurance and restoration people were still there. Apparently, the fire isn't suspicious, but it certainly took its toll.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Tea with Leigh

I just purchased Leigh's book, "Short Cut". I thoroughly read the synopsis and reviews at Amazon and this sounds like a read that is right up my alley. I love British mysteries and the wonderful descriptions of the character of the people, the small towns and the countryside. "Short Cut" sounds like it has all this and more.

I visited Calistoga, CA last year and found this wonderful tea set at a tea shop. The poinsettias are perfect for the season, don't you think? I have invited Leigh over for a spot of tea in celebration of buying her book. Come over to the lighthouse at #53A if you see this. All are welcome. AND, if you have read the book - SPILL IT! I'm a terrible last page reader and don't object to spoilers at all. LOL


TONIGHT AT 7:00 pm Eastern Standard Time, Marion and kj will click into comments on this post and begin a chatting over the fence. Anyone who would like to join in or follow along is welcome. We don't know what we'll talk about. We just know we are happy to be neighbors and we decided to take some time to hang out together.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Lingering in Locke, CA - Part I

Pleases stop by #53A for a visit as I share my travels from yesterday.

Today I had an interview with the lovely Joyanna on Radio Northwick Park - also to be broadcast on a women's radio station, which I'm very pleased about. Joyanna has invited me back for a LIVE INTERVIEW on January 30th! I hope I don't slip up . . .
I'll be in Waterstones in UXBRIDGE next Saturday and WH Smith's in OXFORD on Sunday so hope to meet some of you there. I'll keep you posted where I'm going to be, as I have about 15 events booked before Christmas - dodging around the day job.
By the way - if anyone on Blogland Lane would like a signed copy of Cut Short as a personalised Christmas present, you can always order from amazon and email me for a signed message to put in the book. Amazon has Cut Short for about £5 - link on my blog where you can also find my email.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Roadtripping to Locke

My friend Elaine and I have been roadtripping and drove recently to Locke, CA. There is so much history there and lots to share. This shot is actually a marriage of two photos of the community garden that has been put to bed for the winter. Between now and Sunday, I'll have much more to share with you.

I was absent... that doesn't mean I will be absent forever! :)

Hello Bloglanders!!! How are you guys!!? I have been absent here for so long and I missed you guys a lot!!! I would not wonder if I have to encounter questions like: "Who are you!!?"

Anyways.... I guess our Blogland Lane is just doing great!

Neighbours.... I have opened a fan page for our Sweet Blogland Lane in Facebook... If you want to become a fan please follow this link: Blogland Lane Facebook Fan Page. If you are a resident of Blogland Lane, please provide your house number on the wall of that page... I want all the members to act as admin there so that everyone can share things easily!

Today I want to share some quotations about life... Hope you guys will like it.

“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
-Abraham Lincoln

"As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fears, our presence automatically liberates others.”
-Marianne Williamson

“Desire is a more powerful motivator than fear ever dreamed.”

“We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken away from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way.”
-Victor Frank

“When you look at love, you're looking into the face of appreciation.”

“...the culture we have does not help people feel good about themselves. We're teaching the wrong things. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn't work, don't buy it. Create your own.”
-Mitch Albom

“What disturbs people's minds is not events, but their judgments on events.”

“You can't have everything. Where would you put it?”
-Steven Wright

“If you always do what interests you, then at least one person is pleased.”
-Katharine Hepburn's mother

“Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after.”
-Henry David Thoreau

“The secret of health for both the mind and body is not to mourn for the past, not to worry about the future, not to anticipate troubles, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.”

I found these words very inspiring and profound.... I guess everyone has something to learn from these...

I'm dying to see all of you at my tea table beside my cute little pond... Want some tea and little chit-chat guys? You definitely know where to knock... It's #602! :)

Cheers guys!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Ok who said that??? "Dance Naked?" It's a picture I took in Seattle and at the time seemed appropriate. I think it really means dance like no one can see you~ dance like the music in your head is the only music ever~dance like you have wild abandon ~ dance.. period.... Let's just dance, slow and easy, wild and hot... just dance .... feel our bodies....

Renee's Room

An elderly man was seen walking along the paths of the Turquoise Turtle recently, smiling and nodding a greeting to those he passed.  His head is covered with wispy, snowy white hair that curls about his ears.  He peeks out at the world through small, gold rimmed glasses perched so far down on his nose that no part of his blue-gray eyes are covered.  These twinkle with humor and intelligence.  No one who saw him remembers speaking, yet we all know where his room is and that it is next to the one we are keeping for Renee.  She told us some time ago that she wanted to stay and we have her room ready.

It's just along the path to the cove, sheltered among giant elephant ear palms and covered in fragipani blossoms.   All through the night, warm sea breezes rustle the bedhangings and carry the scent of delicate evening blooming  moonflowers through the air.  Hummingbirds with glowing, translucent feathers hover above the overflowing flower baskets shooting shafts of color as they dart from one basket to another in the morning sunshine.  Hot tea and almond biscotti are always on the table just outside the door, on the porch overlooking the harbor

Books are stacked everywhere.  These belong to the gentleman next door; he is always adding to the collection.  The books are rare and very old, even from a distance they draw you closer.  So many hands have handled them that the leather covers are pliable and soft to the touch.  No hard corners jab tender skin.  The endpapers are marbled in the colors of the sea and the thick parchment pages are edged in gold.  No matter where the book is opened, it will always lie flat.  The illustrations are hand tinted and the writing is faded, royal purple calligraphy.  Of course!  These aren't books.  They're journals!  The old gentleman is filling the world around Renee's room with beauty and wonder.  He knows that minds can dwell in a color or a scent and especially in imagination.  There is lovliness in the world if we seek it out.  Anyone from Blogland Lane is welcome to drop by and pick up a journal, to read Renee a story or show her one of the illustrations.  Read aloud if you like.  Put you feet up on the porch railings and draw a picture.  Stay for a little while and have tea.

We can all listen and share in the stories and pictures, there is room for us all.  But a few of us, a very, very few, can actually enter into these worlds the journals describe.  This gift is given only to those with old souls, to warriors and to those with special gifts.  Renee can enter these places.

I know this is true because Renee is a warrior.

And Renee can fly.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Hope Hope Hope Hope Hope

Dear friends on Blogland Lane,

I have been reading a blog called Weldable Cookies written by Dawn who lives in Maine. Dawn would like very much to get married, and is waiting to hear if the voters of Maine will allow that. I don't recall having to ask the voters of Michigan if I could get married. Hmmmm. In any case, I am hoping you will join me in sending all your positive thoughts and energy to the State of Maine tonight as Dawn and all the other people who have worked SO HARD over the last few months await the election results. Dawn has been eloquent and passionate and nearly worked herself into a hospital bed.

There are scientists who believe that the combined force of human desire can actually affect events. Tonight, I want you to hope with me for No on 1/Marriage Equality.

I am on pins and needles. I hope Dawn is holding up.


Holiday Greetings and Self-Promotion

A certain Ms. KJ who shall remain nameless insisted I let the wonderful folks and neighbors at Blogland Lane know about my holiday cards at my Etsy shop.

Most of my art images are made into cards so that my 'sold' paintings can be enjoyed by others. I'm a believer in letter writing which is why cards are so important to me. So please stop by if you have time. I even welcome browsers!

Monday, November 2, 2009

50 years on

I thought I'd share this picture - the two girls I'm with at my signing in WH Smith's in Oxford are old school friends. I've known them for . . . half a century! (OK, we're not exactly girls any more . . . )
I haven't been on Blogland Lane for a while as I've been away in Italy having a wonderful holiday. While I was away, I finished the final draft of ROAD CLOSED which is now with the editor. Keep your fingers crossed for me!
On my return I had two more invitations to do book signings (14 between now and Christmas and 4 bookings for 2010 already!) CUT SHORT has also been chosen as the next book for a reading group so I'm looking forward to meeting them in the New Year.