Tuesday, January 1, 2019

What I read, watched and rocked out to in 2018!

2018 was a trying year. But of course, good times as well. 
Here's to a healthy, happy 2019 for all of us!
My next book comes out NEXT MONTH!

Below is my usual list of what I read, watched, and the many concerts I attended in 2018!
What were your favorite reads, shows or events of 2018?


Broken Little Melodies by Jennifer Ann

Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll

No Relation by Paula Carter

The Perfect Mother by Aimee Molloy

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis

A Dying Machine by Mark Tremonti and John Shirley

My signed book by Mark Tremonti!

When We Touch by Tia Louise

 MOVIES – Total at the theater 6

Black Panther


Avengers Infinity War

Antman and Wasp

A Star is Born

Bohemian Rhapsody

My fave network shows right now are Life in Pieces and Modern Family.
I also watched
Atypical -seasons 1 and 2
Ozark season 1
The Little Drummer Girl
True Blood – my favorite series of all time! Currently rewatching. (On season 5/8)
Bird Box

CONCERTS- Total –14

Papa Roach (16th time)



Harry Styles

Foo Fighters

Niall Horan


Buckcherry (19th time), Alien Ant Farm, POD, Lit


Tremonti and Ten Years

Kip Winger

Fight the Fury


Daughtry (8th time)

And I even got to sing onstage again with Kip Winger this year!

Check it out here! https://www.instagram.com/p/BpKCMtTH0Q2/

Happy 2019 to you!

Friday, December 21, 2018

Cover Reveal!

Here's the amazing cover of my middle grade novel from Vinspire Publishing! 
Coming February 28, 2019!!!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

What I read, watched, and rocked out to in 2017

It's sort of still the beginning of the year, right? Good! So let's get onto my usual wrap up of what I read, watched, and rocked out to in the previous year!


BOOKS – Total 4

BIG LITTLE LIES by Liane Moriarty
THE HANDMAID’S TALE by Margaret Atwood
THE LAST GUY by Tia Louise and Ilsa Madden Mils

I'm a little embarrassed at the lack of reading I did the past year! But all good books.
I did have a busy 2017 though. Teaching kindergarten full time. My oldest graduated high school! Attending and chauffeuring my kids' activities. I visited Wisconsin, Iowa, Ohio, Michigan, the Bahamas. And I started my National Board teaching certification process.
 But dude. Even so. I promise to read more this year.

MOVIES – Total at the theater 6
Kong: Skull Island
Wonder Woman
Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol 2
The Lego Ninjago Movie
Thor, Ragnorok
Star Wars: The Last Jedi

All of these with one or more of my kiddos! My top three were Wonder Woman, Thor and The Last Jedi.

CONCERTS- Total – 13!
Yes, music is my therapy, my passion.  I totally rock out and sing at the top of my lungs to decompress. So this is obviously where my entertainment dollar went to this year.
Kip Winger- Yes, that's me singing with him! Ahhhhhh!

Winger (twice)
Third Eye Blind
Scott Stapp, Trapt, Sick Puppies
Buckcherry (for the 16th time)
Daughtry and Nickelback
Ed Sheeran (9th row!!)
Josh Todd and the Conflict (twice)

Dua Lipa
Papa Roach (for the 14th and 15th time)
So, that's my year.
What were your fave books, movies, and concerts of 2017?


Thursday, December 29, 2016

What I Read, Watched, and Rocked Out to in 2016

My blog has been rather dormant this year, but I have not been! I've been busy teaching kindergarten, editing my middle grade novel, being a distributor for It Works health and wellness products, momming my three awesome kids, and all this below!

Here is my annual list of what I read, watched, and rocked out to!

I mostly read in the summer or on school breaks, so the list isn't as long as I'd like, but I read some amazing books this year!

ROOM by Emma Donoghue  (need to still see the movie!)

YES, PLEASE by Amy Poehler

ONE TO KEEP by Tia Louise

ELEANOR AND PARK by Rainbow Rowell

WILL GRAYSON, WILL GRAYSON by John Green and David Levithan


BLUE LILY, LILY BLUE by Maggie Steifvater


THIS ONE MOMENT By Stina Lindenblatt


THE RAVEN KING by Maggie Steifvater


Oh! And looky! Here's me with that handsome and hilarious author/actor Joel McHale!
I am happy to report that I read more books than watched movies this year!

Grease Live on Fox

Daddy’s Home


Civil War

Magic Mike XL

The Secret Life of Pets

The Legend of Tarzan

Batman vs Superman

Bad Moms

Rogue One (Sigh. Very sad about Carrie Fisher.)
And you know my huge passion for my rock music. Concerts are my therapy for sure. Here are the bands I saw live this year! (And a sidenote: been dancing to George Michael tunes for the last few days. What a loss for the music world!)
Justin Bieber  (yes, I have a teenage daughter)
Skillet (a five dollar concert- man, they rocked it!)
Buckcherry - 5 times!  (my total count of Buckcherry shows is 15 now)
Sebastian Bach
Me and the Buckcherry boys
Goo Goo Dolls/Safety Suit
Click HERE to see me singing with Doug, the lead singer of Safety Suit! :)



Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Wild, Wild Midwest Conference 2016

This writer finally attended another SCBWI conference, and it was amazing! I feel like my brain is still processing and downloading all the wonderful information I learned there this past weekend.

Here's a quick rundown of my whirlwind weekend:

1. Look! I came prepared to learn from the wonderful Cinda Williams Chima, author of many bestselling books, including the Shattered Realms series. I attended her Ensnaring the Wary intensive, and learned so much about how to strengthen my middle grade manuscript.

2. Roaring Twenties Party!

What a fun way to start the weekend! The Charleston was taught. I danced to some Prince songs. And SO many fabulous costumes. So fun to mingle with so many talented people! Here is YA writer and friend, Gwen Flascamp, and I (photo taken by the wonderful Linda Sue Park - who was a speaker and part of the faculty. I attended an amazing session of hers on Saturday).

3. Saturday was jam-packed with session after session. I loved learning from agents, editors, and authors. Also, the attendees raised almost $4000 for the ‪#‎WeNeedDiverseBooks‬ ‪#‎WNDB‬ cause, funding diversity programs and publishing internships. Pretty awesome, right?!

4. Art Show Saturday Night

Beautiful art by illustrators were showcased. Here are some fave art pieces and people I met that night! Illustrators Matt Vincent and Michael Trujillo, middle grade novelist, KW Penndorf, and YA writer, Gwen Flascamp!  We had such a blast!

5. Sunday sessions and critique pick up!

Even more amazing sessions on Sunday plus a thorough critique of my manuscript by faculty of the conference.

If you haven't attended a conference in a while, don't wait! I came back with so many ideas to strengthen my manuscripts, met so many wonderful people and contacts, and am so INSPIRED by the weekend!

Happy Writing!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

What I read, watched, and rocked out to in 2015

Happy New Year, friends! I hope 2015 was good to you, and I hope 2016 is even better.

2015 was busy. I taught kindergarten and reading, helped coach my son in basketball, went to three weddings in June, hosted a Spanish exchange student, chauffeured and watched my kids play sports, and traveled to Arizona, Iowa and Wisconsin. My newest picture book I'M A LITTLE GREEN WITCH was released in September. I became an It Works! distributor (I'm healthier!). And I finished the year wrapping up my rough draft of a middle grade novel on December 31. I'm determined to make more time for writing and improving myself in 2016.

Here is my usual what I read, watched and rocked out to throughout the year!


Bark Until Heard by Becky Monroe

Paper Towns by John Green

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

The Terrible Two by Mac Barnett and Jory John

One to Hold by Tia Louise

The Silent Wife by ASA Harrison

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

King of the Mutants by Samantha Verant

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

Demon’s Ink By Kimbra Kasch

Into the Dark By Caroline Patti

Auggie & Me by RJ Palacio


Fifty Shades of Grey
The Spongebob Movie
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Jurassic World
Inside Out
The Outsiders
Star Wars: The Force Awakens (3x)


Buckcherry for the 10th time

Papa Roach 2 times in January
Sixx Am/Apocalyptica

Taylor Swift/Shawn Mendez

Kip Winger (see below)

and Papa Roach (for the 13th time)/In this Moment/Pop Evil

What were some of your favorite
books, concerts, or movies of 2015?


Monday, November 9, 2015

Mondays Music Moves Me: Movie Soundtracks

Mondays Music Moves Me is something I stumbled upon last month. How cool that Xmas Dolly hosts this twice a month! Today's theme is Movie Soundtracks. This is such a great theme with so many possibilities!

As you can see, I had trouble narrowing songs down for this theme.

First is "A View to A Kill" by Duran Duran from the James Bond movie soundtrack of the same name. Did you know that when that movie came out, I went to it fully expecting to see Duran Duran somewhere in it? Yup. Spoiler alert: they weren't in it. But this cool song was!

Speaking of the 80's,  I listened to the movie soundtrack Purple Rain quite a bit. All are great tunes, but my fave from the movie is "Let's Go Crazy." I couldn't find a youtube video though to embed!

Next is "American Girl" by Tom Petty from Silence of the Lambs. I cannot hear that song without picturing the girl in her car singing it before becoming a victim!

We rarely take a road trip without blasting this song from Vacation at least once!

And lastly, who can't listen to this Queen song without banging their head like Wayne and Garth in Wayne's World! :)

I'm noticing my picks are all from the way past! I guess I need to see more current movies!
Though I did love the rockin' Avengers Assemble soundtrack. It had some of my fave bands like Papa Roach and Buckcherry plus Bush and Evanescence!

Visit Xmas Dolly for move links of songs from the movies! What's your favorite song from the movies?