Thursday, September 18, 2014

5 Snowflake Book Review!!!! Colleen Hoover!


Book Review ***** Snowflakes!
 

Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover Goodreads Maybe Someday

This 367 page book is the first I’ve read by Colleen Hoover. When I saw this book listed as a fan favorite, I decided to read her work and get a better understanding of who this author is, and how she writes.

It was beautiful. I’m proud to be a fellow Texan with folks like Colleen.

Ms. Hoover’s succinct writing style did not disappoint me. I like descriptors, good scene/character development, and closing a scene. She did a very good job of articulating and setting up the characters. I noticed one potential error, but, it was simply a mix up of words.

I appreciated how thoroughly she covered the life that a deaf person would face each day. The realism charmed me, and I was amazed how well she saw the perspective through Ridge’s eyes, even with the profound hearing loss. It was fabulous to see how well this character played the guitar and could put together songs. I will always admire the character in Ridge she developed.

The characters wove their lives together in a believable family style. The caring and generosity between them all made me smile more than once. I don’t even need to give away any spoilers, because the quality alone makes this book worth your time- just trust me.

I also like how she gave just enough details about the intimate scenes for a readers’ imagination. I would suggest this could be appropriate for the mature high school-aged reading crowd. Even when she did go into the small details, she set the image tastefully and modestly.

All in all, Ms. Hoover writes a believable story about a unique couple finding genuine love through an equally unique set of circumstances.  She portrayed an accurate description of the fear of what to do with their feelings. I could feel the character’s frustrations, infatuations, and just how intensely the human condition can affect anyone-regardless of their situation.
Barnes and Noble

Amazon


 
 




 

 

 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Belly Fat is Not Just Uncomfortable, It Could be H. Pylori


Good morning!  I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I’ve had significant health problems for almost three years. Initially, a rheumatologist diagnosed me with systemic lupus (SLE) on June 19, 2013. However, the medication wasn’t working and I kept getting worse and developing new symptoms. So, after second, third, and fourth opinions, my neurologist believes instead I have fibromyalgia. 

In April 2014 I visited yet another rheumatologist who I hoped would be familiar with autoimmune disorders. Following an extensive intake during my initial appointment, I found a place where the doctor also listened to me. Based upon my blood work, the doctor believes I have Sjogren’s Syndrome. She also made the diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and pre-lupus. I’ve never heard of pre-lupus, but, hopefully it stays in the “pre” category.

Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey- Which is now more frustrating than ever. I test positive for ANAs in my blood, but, the lupus tests are negative. There are several varieties of autoimmune disorders, with different caveats and health variations. Learning to live with the unknown has become my routine. With worsening symptoms, I consulted an amazing oncologist, Dr. Gerardo Trillo at Texas Oncology.

HELICOBACTER PYLORI INVASION

Out of the multitude of lab work the doctor ordered, one that came back positive was the H. Pylori bacteria.  This disgusting, creepy bacterium resembles some type of parasite. It’s all I can do to try to forget about it without wanting to take a paint scraper to my insides. Dr. Trillo described it as having tentacles with little pliers on the end of each one. It burrows into your stomach lining and clenches in with those pliers. Uber. Ick.

According to the Mayo Clinic - Mayo Clinic H. Pylori

“H. pylori infection occurs when a type of bacteria called Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infects your stomach. This usually happens during childhood. A common cause of peptic ulcers, H. pylori infection may be present in more than half the people in the world.

Most people don't realize they have H. pylori infection, because they never get sick from it. If you develop signs and symptoms of a peptic ulcer, your doctor will probably test you for H. pylori infection, because it can be treated with antibiotics.”

In all the vials of blood I’ve given, never once was I tested for H. Pylori, along with some other tests I now believe should have been ordered. I will get into that in a different blog post. However, I’m so thankful Dr. Trillo thinks outside the box. Anyone diagnosed with an autoimmune disease is likely NOT TEXTBOOK. I found two doctors who admit I’m a puzzle and want to help me figure it out.

Dr. Trillo called me a “tough cookie”. Love it.



Back to topic- In the daily fight waged within my immune system, the H. Pylori bacteria creates an infection that may cause ulcers, gastritis, and even cancer. Not everyone infected will actually develop cancer, but, it’s a very real possibility.

Again from the Mayo Clinic –

“Most people with H. pylori infection will never have any signs or symptoms. It's not clear why this is, but some people may be born with more resistance to the harmful effects of H. pylori.

When signs or symptoms do occur with H. pylori infection, they may include:

 •An ache or burning pain in your abdomen

•Abdominal pain that's worse when your stomach is empty

•Nausea

•Loss of appetite

•Frequent burping

•Bloating

•Unintentional weight loss

When to see a doctor

 Make an appointment with your doctor if you notice any persistent signs and symptoms that worry you. Seek immediate medical help if you experience:

 •Severe or persistent abdominal pain

•Difficulty swallowing

•Bloody or black tarry stools

•Bloody or black vomit or vomit that looks like coffee grounds

In my case, I was already consulting doctor after doctor in a quest to get to the root of my seriously declining health problems. I’m to the point that keeping up in simple yoga is sometimes too much for me to handle. I was doing triathlons 3 years ago and my condition really really sucks now- it’s depressing and frustrating. I’ve gained 30 pounds in 3 years. Yes, 30, that’s like 3 or 4 babies or 6 bags of sugar.

Imagine me with 6 bags of sugar duct taped to my mid-section. Can someone say “Cortisol”? Having this infection may lead to an increase in cortisol, resulting in stubborn belly fat making my midsection horribly distended, fat, and bloated. It’s not just the aesthetics of it all, it increases the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure when fat accumulates in the mid-section.

I’m smack dab in the middle of the prescription therapy for H. Pylori. My doc prescribed 2000 mg daily of antibiotics and 60 mg of an acid blocker. It’s part of a ready packaged regimen that I hope does the trick.

I will have follow up testing to check for any remainder of the H. Pylori. I will also have an endoscopy and colonoscopy next month. I bet you can’t wait for that blog post.

Take charge of your health. My rheumy patted me on the back and told me that my symptoms were just part of the fibromyalgia. I looked over my lab results and said NO. I kept researching, not to diagnose myself, but, to find a doctor to listen to me and help me. I believe I’m finally on my way.

Hugs to you all and infinite love.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Tuesday Tales...Did You Say Short and Curlies?

Happy Hot Tuesday and welcome to The Locker. Today, I again return to my current WIP, re-titled Split the Uprights for my Fantasy Leagues series. This week we write to the word prompt "curly". I gotta admit, when I saw this prompt, it immediately made me think of grabbing someone by the short and curlies...bahahaha... Isn't that sort of a conflicting term? If I didn't like someone very much, I definitely don't wanna be touching their private coiffe. Anyway, in the midst of the joking, I present to you my contribution to Curly!  It's exciting because I'm so close to the end of writing this first book. Which means, it will retire from soon from Tuesday Tales. I may get one or two more out of it. :) I'll just have to wait and see.




 So, my life was going to shit faster than popsicles melt in Atlanta. I was blacking out again, but, that was my own fucking fault. I ran the ashamed asylum, right here in my own home…bar, the two places were one in the same these days. All those years of sobriety went right out the window, just about the time Marty left.
Marty.
He looked nothing like his father, his motherly contribution must have had the stronger genes. Of course, she ran her home with an iron fist.  She probably demanded his father’s sperm do only enough to fertilize and leave the rest of the zygote to her. It’s true, if anyone has that modicum of control, it was her. Poor Marty had to live with a militant mother and a distant self-absorbed father. What a combo.
I poured myself another round. Tonight, it was honey bourbon. I would have rounded it out with a cigar, if I’d planned my pity party with the right checklist. Who needs hors d’oeuvres either? Not me. My mom tried to be my best friend, that’s where she screwed up. She was my first roommate and my last, I couldn’t stand anyone else sharing the same address after my experience with her.
The room temperature alcohol burned with a sweetness all the way down to my tummy. The warmth spread from the inside out, cocooning me with an amber glow. Marty was such an idiot. He clamored after me like a horny teenage boy. He never got enough of me, even when I was in need of a shower and some mouthwash. He always kissed me thoroughly after I swallowed. Not trying to find the remnants of a taste, but, to let me know he appreciated what I did. He wasn’t repulsed by my feral appetite.
My thoughts replayed our last union. All I could think about was lacing my fingers through his curly hair and pulling very hard. He liked for me to pull his hair. I never heard much about a man wanting his hair pulled, only a woman.  Marty was a trailblazer in many senses of the word.  I learned so much from him. My hair brushed over my shoulder. I caught a glimpse of my pathetic self in the mirror and fell apart all over again. I cried harder with the realization my life paralleled a country music song. What a fucking cliché.



BEFORE YOU LEAVE ME FOR SOME OTHER AWESOMELY TALENTED WORKS, PLEASE CHECK OUT MY LATEST REVIEW! Here's just a snippet- "The main characters are realistic and draw the reader into their struggle to explore their feelings and build a relationship. With elements of love, friendship, erotic sex scenes, humor, romance, and a hint of suspense, this titillating tale fires up the senses to deliver an entertaining read."
Goodreads Ind'Tale Review Sexy Bea Spelling

Now head over to our main page for more responses to the word prompt "curly"...;)Tuesday Tales Main


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

TUESDAY TALES? YEP, We are BACK! waving "ribbons"


Happy Hot Tuesday and WE ARE BACK for Tuesday Tales? Today, I return to my current WIP, re-titled Split the Uprights for my Fantasy Leagues series. This week we write to the word prompt "ribbon".
 
It's exciting because I'm so close to the end of writing this first book. Which means, it will retire from soon from Tuesday Tales. I may get one or two more out of it. :) I'll just have to wait and see.
 
Danika was there that day when my uncle took me back to that house one last time. I was supposed to stay in his truck. I don’t even know why I was with him. The look in her eyes, it wasn’t pity, it was empathy. But, my immature mind couldn’t tell the difference. I thought she was afraid of me and I didn’t want to hear her insults. I heard them enough at school. But, how could his beautiful creature want to hurt anyone? I still wouldn’t take the chance. When she opened her mouth to speak, I ran back to my uncle’s truck. He told me to stay inside anyway and I didn’t want to anger him. I needed a home and didn’t want him to kick me out for disobeying him.

I would spend the rest of my life listening to my uncle and respecting him. I couldn’t imagine my life without him and my crazy aunt. They took me in when everyone else deserted me…even my own mother. A ribbon of doubt waved through me.

She could have lived life in that wheelchair, but, she gave up on me. It was selfish, cruel and I didn’t know if I’d ever forgive her. Meeting Danika brought everything back with such clarity, it gave me a headache to imagine it. I felt an immediate connection to her because she was there, at that pivotal moment in my life. Fate couldn’t have been more opportune. It left me with lingering questions and I wanted immediate answers.

Who the hell takes their child to a crime scene cleanup job?

Why the hell was I confused by it?

I sat there long after the sun went down, processing everything again with an adult frame of mind. I was back, deeply absorbed in those moments with a mature coherence, yet still blaming myself somehow. The night gave me comfortable obscurity that nothing else could. Other than the moon giving me away, the blackness gave me shelter. But tonight, literally, I saw Danika in a new light, the silvery moonlight illuminated the truth. She had a tougher core than I possessed, though I tried valiantly to fake it. It seemed like I was destined to disappoint her too, we were so different.

Now, I needed to find that same explanation for my mother’s actions. Fate reopened a wound I thought had healed long ago. One thing was crystal clear- I wasn’t good for anyone, especially not for intimacy. But, how do I walk away?"
 
 
BEFORE YOU LEAVE ME FOR SOME OTHER AWESOMELY TALENTED WORKS, PLEASE CHECK OUT MY LATEST REVIEW! Here's just a snippet- "The main characters are realistic and draw the reader into their struggle to explore their feelings and build a relationship. With elements of love, friendship, erotic sex scenes, humor, romance, and a hint of suspense, this titillating tale fires up the senses to deliver an entertaining read."
Goodreads Ind'Tale Review Sexy Bea Spelling

Now head over to our main page for more responses to the word prompt "bloom"...;)Tuesday Tales Main
 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

That's Amore! Just Out Of My Grasp


08/28/2014

Good morning!  I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I’ve had significant health problems for almost two years. Initially, my rheumatologist diagnosed me with systemic lupus (SLE) on June 19, 2013. However, the medication wasn’t working and I kept getting worse and developing new symptoms. So, after second, third, and fourth opinions, my neurologist believes instead I have fibromyalgia. 

In April 2014 I visited yet another rheumatologist who I hoped would be familiar with autoimmune disorders. Following an extensive intake during my initial appointment, I found a place where the doctor also listened to me. Based upon my blood work, the doctor believes I have Sjogren’s Syndrome. She also made the diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and pre-lupus. I’ve never heard of pre-lupus, but, hopefully it stays in the “pre” category.

Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey- Which is now more frustrating than ever. I test positive for ANAs in my blood, but, the lupus tests are negative. There are several varieties of autoimmune disorders, with different caveats and health variations. Learning to live with the unknown has become my routine.

LOVE…YEAH, I SAID IT

Let me go back to last week. The visit to the urologist was inconsequential. Apparently, this little oddity occurring in my kidney is a fairly routine occurrence. So, with that, the entire system there is good.

Carry on.

Results from the oncologist are in the works. My appointment there was Tuesday, the 26th. Absolutely amazing doctor, Dr. Trillo at Texas Oncology. I had 15 tubes of blood drawn, scheduled for another CT scan, probable endoscopy and referral to GI doc. Keeping my mind off the blahs, let’s talk about something fun, you know, warm and fuzzy.

How many times do you say, “I love you”, in one day?

I average about ten times.

Yup.

Ten, on a slow day.

My family has been big on amore since forever. Grown men, including my sons, brother, and brother in law routinely tell each other, and the rest of us- their heartfelt replies several times in one visit.

I told my daughter about 3 times this morning as she was getting out of the car, she rounded the car and was walking into the high school gym. Actually, those 3 times were a reply to her initiated “I love you, mom”.

It isn’t uncommon for us to say I love you 3 times in one telephone conversation. Even more by text, and probably even more still in a Facebook post.

Do we mean it?

Hell ya!

Life is too long to let a day go by without telling someone you love them. I would venture a guess that you have at least one person to remind on a daily basis just where they rank on the emotional cardio scale.

It will make you feel better.

I challenge you for the next week. Keep a stroke tally every day of how many times you say “I  love you” in one day. I want to know your number for the week.

If I get enough replies, I might be encouraged for some type of giveaway.

I love you guys, take care of each other.

 

 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fix My Funnel, Please...Just Out of My Grasp


Good morning!  I’ve decided to use my blog not only to writing, music, and other facets of entertainment, but, also to share my journey. I’ve had significant health problems for almost two years. Initially, my rheumatologist diagnosed me with systemic lupus (SLE) on June 19, 2013. However, the medication wasn’t working and I kept getting worse and developing new symptoms. So, after second, third, and fourth opinions, my neurologist believes instead I have fibromyalgia. 

In April 2014 I visited yet another rheumatologist who I hoped would be familiar with autoimmune disorders. Following an extensive intake during my initial appointment, I found a place where the doctor also listened to me. Based upon my blood work, the doctor believes I have Sjogren’s Syndrome. She also made the diagnosis of Fibromyalgia and pre-lupus. I’ve never heard of pre-lupus, but, hopefully it stays in the “pre” category.

Thank you for listening, each week I will have a new installment chronicling my journey- Which is now more frustrating than ever. I test positive for ANAs in my blood, but, the lupus tests are negative. There are several varieties of autoimmune disorders, with different caveats and health variations. Learning to live with the unknown has become my routine.

WILL YOU FIX MY FUNNEL PLEASE?

At some point I will feel more than 75% all the time. I live with that hope every day. I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating, I’m so sad that I went from a very active triathlete to someone who can barely make it through a 30 minute cardio class.



Ugh.

Within the past three months I’ve had what feels like a chronic UTI. If you’ve ever had one, you know how it really jams up your gears. Also, lethargy increased and I can’t seem to get enough sleep. I have a chronic sore throat, and those occasional kick my ass migraines. The real cruel twist of nature is the feeling of shin splints in both legs when I lie down.

F’in really?

I only wish I could run again to get shin splints

Oh, the other minor, but, oh so important to me detail, I’ve gained 30 pounds in the past two years.

I’ve gained 30 pounds in the past two years, and I’m not on steroids. I don’t need them. I only occasionally take Lodine or Naproxen.

I decided to make an appointment with a vascular doctor. I thought maybe a hernia was to blame for the full time abdominal pain, pressure, bloating, and discomfort. The doc was great, listened to me, and ordered a CT scan with IV contrast for my full abdominal and pelvic area.

Well, come to find out there is no hernia…good news. But, I have something called an external renal pelvis and it’s distended.

Imagine a little funnel emptying from the kidney into the little ureter that connects to the bladder. Usually the little funnel (renal pelvis) is located within the kidney. Mine has taken up residence outside the kidney (in and of itself still normal) but, it’s distended and now, I have this chronic feeling of UTI, with no accompanying infection.

So, come on now, you gotta be able to fix that.

Wish me luck today, I have the appointment with the urologist the vascular doc referred me to. I want at least one thing repaired instead of treating the symptoms.

Hugs and yes, I’m still very grateful for every breath and every smile. I will march on.

COMING THIS FALL #FOOTBALLROMANCE

Monday, August 18, 2014

COVER REVEAL

Am sooooo excited to show to all of you the cover for the first book in my newest series. Now, introducing, SPLIT THE UPRIGHTS the Fantasy League Series book one.

More details to come...