Monday, June 30, 2008

Saying Goodbye

We said goodbye to Tino, our beloved cat of 15 years, Saturday morning. He let us know on Friday that it was time, and Brenda, our vet, came to the house early Saturday morning. We are incredibly sad, but thankful that Tino has now crossed the Rainbow Bridge and is no longer in pain. I told him to chase butterflies and eat as much chicken as he wants, and he thought that was a good idea. Our household won’t be the same without him, but…as Freddy Mercury once sang, “Who wants to live forever?” We had a great life with our little mister, and now he’s moved on to his next adventure.

We finally have beautiful sunshine. I hope everyone is enjoying summer weather this week.

Rest in peace, dear sweet Valentine, we love you!
Valentine "Tino" Sellie
Feb. 14, 1993 - June 28, 2008

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Adventures in Gardening, Part One

I am the only one in my family who did not inherit the gardening gene. My mom has beautiful gardens; my dad and his wife have beautiful gardens and even grow their own vegetables (I can’t leave their house without a trunk full of lettuce). My brother is also an excellent gardener and my sister is a MASTER Gardener. She and her husband run their own nursery, for crying out loud. But me? I am the family member who has beauty bark in her yard…and shrubs you can’t kill (well, except for the one…but a shrub can only handle so much dog pee). To be fair, the husband takes great pride in his lawn…but that’s a guy thing and kind of expected.

We bought our current house just over four years ago and the couple who owned it before us must have spent thousands to landscape the backyard. It has a pond, fountain, beautiful stone benches, a path, etc. But when we moved in, we just didn’t have the time to maintain it. For awhile, we paid a landscaping company to keep it decent, then decided to have a go at it ourselves.

I have decided that THIS IS THE SUMMER I WILL BECOME A GARDENER. Really. Honestly. Why? My four-year-old son has inherited the family gardening gene (sigh). I can’t deny him, so I must set a good example. Well, after spending three weekends weeding, here’s how our first flower planting session went.

Me: “Let’s dig holes, mix planting soil in them, and plant the flowers we just bought.”
Son: “Okay!” Grabs ball and proceeds to play fetch with dogs.
Me: Digs hole, turns to grab potting soil.
Dog: drops ball in newly dug hole.
Me: Throws ball across yard and dumps potting soil in hole.
Son: “Oooh a worm, can I touch it?”
Me: Tries not to look horrified at worm in son’s hand, explains why worms are good for the garden.
Dog: Drops ball in hole.
Me: Yells at dog, grabs ball and throws it across yard.
Son: Runs across yard with plant in hand.
Plant: "I is wilting now."
Me: Retrieves plant.
Dog: Drops ball in hole.
Me: Yells at dog, grabs ball, throws it across yard and quickly plants flower.
Son: “It needs water.”
Me: Grabs hose.
Dog: Drops ball on flower.
Me: Sighs.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Something Warm and Mushy

And it's not my son's breakfast.

Here's today's AAAWWW moment. God, what did we do before You Tube?

Friday, June 20, 2008

Sad Dogs

I didn't realize today is Bring Your Dog to Work Day. Not that my workplace would condone such a thing...but Max and Brandy are at home, sad. I'll have to tell them that since The Husband works from home...technically HE brought them to work today. Think they will buy it?

Congratulations Kelly!

My super fabulous agent extraordinaire Colleen Lindsay just sold fellow client Kelly Gay's book in a two book deal. Visit Kelly's Blog for more info and to say congrats.

Yey Kelly and Colleen! Woot Woot! Can't wait to read the first book!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

On a Lighter Note

I worked on Take One today, and wrote what I thought was a pretty funny and vindictive scene.
It's so satisfying to screw the bad guy in writing...makes life's inequities much more bearable.


How do you explain to a four-year-old that your dear kitty of 15-years is going to pass away soon? Tino's cancer is obviously advancing and it's tearing us up. I've ordered "Cat Heaven" and "For Every Cat an Angel" for him. We'll see if I can get through them without blubbering and freaking him out even more. Sigh. Why can't pets live as long as we do?

Saturday, June 14, 2008

What Up, Map My Run?

For the second Saturday in a row, has failed me...cruely forced me to run further than my schedule says I have to run. How? By INVENTING roads. Every Saturday, I diligently map my long run, ensuring that when I finish my mileage, I am right back where I started, at the front door of my house. But last Saturday, Map My Run invented an access road. Sure, I figured it'd be a dirt or gravel road awaiting pavement, but it was only two blocks long and connected me to a road that would take me home. But when I reached said road, it was a wall of blackberry bushes, trees and nettles. Forced to improvise, my nine miler turned into a 10.5 miler.

Today, same thing, different route. No road, not even close. Where did the road go? 10 miler turned into 12.5. Needless to say, I was a bit wasted the rest of the day.

Oh, and to the creepy neanderthal dude in the pickup truck? In case you were too dense to figure it out (and I'm guessing you were), that WASN'T my index finger I used to wipe the sweat off my forehead after you shouted your juvenile opinion of my running out your window as you passed me. Just FYI.

Here's a big shout out to my brother Eric on his birthday today. Happy Birthday Bro! I hope you are having a fabulous time!

Weekly mileage: 24.5/25 (does that mean I have to run a half mile tomorrow?)
Most inspirational artist on the iPod during today's run: Dixie Chicks
Writing update: Ask me tomorrow

Friday, June 13, 2008

Are We Stupid?

Agent Extraordinaire Colleen Lindsay posted this Atlantic article about Google ( that I just had to share. My co-workers reacted by telling me it was too LONG to read in its entirety. You'll understand the irony in that statement if you read the article.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

My friend and Agility Trainer Extraordinaire produced his first agility training video and I thought I'd share. Jef trains my talented and handsome Max (and me too) in competition agility. At the risk of inflating Jef's already large ego, I must say that we are grateful for his coaching...and Max is especially grateful for his sandwiches.

Jef, I had no idea you were such a comedian...okay, maybe I did. But seriously, Milo took this one to the next level!

For more information on Jef and agility, visit

I’m Just Sayin…

Is it hard to replace the toilet paper in the bathroom? Seriously, I’m asking…is it a difficult chore? I’m not going to point the finger at any one individual, but a certain someone in our household with a cold (other than me) likes to carry the roll around in case he/she needs to blow his/her nose. For the past two weeks, I’ve had to hunt for a new roll about every other day. So really…is it hard to replace a roll? Is the inability to place a toilet paper roll on the spindle in the bathroom a genetic fault assigned to a specific gender?

I’m just sayin....

Sunday, June 8, 2008

There's No Charge for Awesomeness

We took our four-year-old to Kung Foo Panda this afternoon and that's my favorite quote. It was a cute movie and I think I ate a whole tub of popcorn. My son has now come down from his Skittles high and is in bed, hopefully not dreaming of becoming a kung foo fighter.

The great news from today is my brother and his fishing partner won their first fishing tournament. Yey! This is their second? summer on the tournament circuit and their first win. Unlike the dog agility show circuit I am on, my brother actually gets a big check when he wins. I am very proud of him. He is an expert fisherman and also makes and sells his own lures. He should write his own book on fishing Washington state lakes.

Hey, now that Lost, Grey's Anatomy and House are done for the season, any ideas on good shows? I love my down time in the eve...I may have a crazy schedule, but veg time in front of the TV is soooo important! Maybe it's time to break down and join Netflix.

Rainy Days are Girlfriend Days

I know the time stamp on this will say Sunday, but I'm posting for Saturday. I didn't mind the rain too much today because I met the girls for a movie and drinks. We saw the ultimate girlfriend movie, "Sex and the City." Was it predictible? Yes. Long? Yes. But I enjoyed it, and the company, immensely. Afterward we had drinks and got caught up. For those who don't know this, I've had the same group of girlfriends since junior high, and in one case, since preschool. There are five of us, and we make it a point of getting together at least once a month. It's become increasingly harder with careers, spouses, kids, etc. But we all make it work. We each have our own network of friends and separate social circles, but there will always be the five of us. I feel lucky to have that.

I started the day with my long run. According to the training shedule, it was supposed to be 9 miles. I mapped out a new course on and hit the road. All was well until about mile seven, when I discovered that a road on my map didn't actually exist in real life and was, in fact, a solid wall of trees, brush and nettles. Oops. Had to a little lost...then my Garmin informed me I'd completed my run...and I was still 1.5 miles from home. Oops. I walked a bit, then reset the Garmin and ran the last mile. This of course gave me an excuse to indulge in a large portion of thai food and many glasses of wine with said girlfriends later in the day.

Sunday (okay, technically today) we are taking our four-year-old to see Kung Foo Panda. Sounds like an odd movie, but he saw a trailer and he really, really, really (reeeeaaaallly mommmy) wants to see it.'s 4 am and the house is completely quiet. I should be writing...

Mileage goal: 9 miles - done, plus one!
Song of the Day: "Dancing Queen" by ABBA. This song came on the iPod at about mile 5 of my run and made me smile like a lunatic as I powered up a hill.

Thursday, June 5, 2008


Came down with a horrid cold this week. So, today, I am sniffling my way through my work day and I run into a colleague, who is sniffling his way through his work day. We both came to the conclusion that ALL cold-type viruses can currently be blamed on our LACK of sunshine. That's right. We're blaming it on the weather. I just read that California is in the midst of a drought. TAKE OUR RAIN, I say.

I'll stop whining now because I have a random question. If you order chinese food to go, do you tip the cashier? I am generally a very good when I pick up my food from the counter and sign my credit slip, I feel guilty not leaving something on the "tip" line, even though I'm not dining in. Is there an etiquette rule here?

My four-year-old finally filled his marble jar with "good behavior" marbles. He has been talking for weeks about earning a periscope when his marble jar is full (he learned about periscopes from Curious George and PBS Kids...not all TV is bad). Last night we gave him his periscope (a green, plastic thing that cost $20) and he was so excited but he very solemnly told me that periscopes "are not for spying. Spying is wrong." Perhaps our current administration should watch more Curious George, no? I am quite sure their good behavior marble jar is not even close to full...but that's another story.

I finally worked through a sticky part of my plot outline for "Take One" and am very excited with the outcome. More details later...

Mileage goal for the day: Can I run with a fever?
Song of the day: "Stronger" by Kanye West
Take One word count: Hasn't changed from Tuesday. sigh.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Where is Spring?

Okay, I know this is Seattle but seriously...we've had like, TWO nice days since the start of Spring. Right now I am sitting inside with a monster sore throat, watching the rain and trying to convince myself that yes, a run WOULD make me feel better.

Of course, I could be working on Take One (novel #2), but the sore throat is ruining my concentration. So instead, I'll snuggle up with my kitty Tino and watch the season finale of Ugly Betty that I tevo'd last week.

I think I'll start posting my word count for Take One, to make sure I stay accountable for its progress.

Also, check out this running shirt I'm thinking of wearing it in the half marathon.

Take One: 10,000/65,000
Mileage goal for today: 5
Song that will inspire my writing today: "End of the Road" by Eddie Vetter (Into the Wild soundtrack) followed by "Where Does the Good Go" by Tegan and Sarah.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Joining the Blog World...Finally

My agent and writer friends suggested I start a blog before my first novel is published. goes! Honestly, I hope I have enough to say...I'm definitely an amateur here. So for starters, this is what's in my world right now:

About Writing:
I have a fabulous new (new as of April) literary agent, Colleen Lindsay of FinePrint Literary in New York. She will soon be shopping my first (and second?) young adult novel to publishers. I am so excited! My second novel is in the works and is way too much fun to write.

About the Family:
My husband is currently shopping for mountain bikes so we can crash through the 700 acres of woods near our house. What fun! My four-year-old has his first music recital (through preschool) next week. He gets to play a xylophone (he can even spell xylophone) so he is very excited. BTW - his music CD collection is now officially larger than mine and he can identify Fallout Boys, Three Doors Down and Paolo Nutini on the radio quicker than me. Amazing.

The Dogs:
My faithful running companions are two yellow labs named Max and Brandy. They are 9-years-old and we've had them since they were babes. Spoiled rotten and very entitled, indeed. Max is still competing in agility with me and shows no signs of slowing. We compete in AKC agility at the excellent level.

Other Stuff:
I am training for my second half marathon, which takes place on June 29. This will help me train for the (gulp) Portland Marathon in October. I can't remember a day when something didn't hurt. Why do I do this? Good question...

Anyway, feel free to stop by and say hi!