The power of positive thinking...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Hello friends---

I've just finished reading the comments from my last blog and they have really touched me and gotten me to thinking. Now, granted, it's summer and the last thing I want to do is think, but even on these beautiful hot days, real life lurks just beyond our everyday view. Several of the women who are regulars on this blog have friends who are facing difficulties right now. This in a time when so many of us are facing job cutbacks and layoffs and financial woes. And I have a very dear friend who was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer only a few weeks ago. It reminds us all that as much as we sometimes want things to just stop for a second, or slow down, life has a way of going on. Sometimes it can all feel so overwhelming, and we don't know how to help ourselves or our friends. Prayers and good thoughts can feel so small in the face of all of that.

But they're not, are they? They're something. There's power in prayer and good thoughts. Please, don't be afraid to ask our blog community to join hearts and minds in a time like that. I'll bet I speak for a lot of us when i say I look forward to praying for your friends' health and recovery, Leen. And too the rest of our blog friends, who have suffered through similar difficulties in the last few months, our hearts go out to all of you, along with our prayers.

Since I'm kind of on my soapbox right now, let me say something else. As my friend and I have been dealing with her recent cancer diagnosis, I have been amazed to discover that the standard of care varies widely by doctor and hospital and state. If you, or anyone you know or love, has been diagnosed with cancer, please, please become proactive. Fight for your own health like you would for your child's. Find the BEST doctor and the BEST hospital. If you have to travel to do so, jump in the car. Many of us are lucky enough to live by first rate facilities; many of us are not. If you don't have a state of the art hospital near you, by all means, go in search of one. As I'm sure you all know, a cancer diagnosis is a call to war. Arm yourself and your loved ones.

Okay, that's what I have to say about that. And now back to our regularly scheduled blogging and my observations/opinions about ordinary life.

Below is a photograph of me and my good friend, Whitney, as we got ready to tackled our the wildly inappropriately named "Fun Run" for the Fourth of July. Three and half miles doesn't sound like much until your figure out that--impossibly--it's all uphill. And I was crazy enough to invite a beautiful eighteen year old girl (who happens to have a college track scholarship under her belt) to join me. Honestly, we had a great time. I'm sure she slowed down to keep up with
me, but she did it with such grace I pretended not to notice. :)

And what else is there to report this week? Hmmm....actually all kinds of things are popping. As I think I've told you, my publisher is closing in on a cover for my new book, called Winter Garden. I haven't seen a final yet, but what they're working on is lovely. Many of you have written to ask what the book is about, and here's what I can reveal. It's the story of two estranged sisters who get together on their father's deathbed. As he's dying, he begs them to try to get to know their mother--a cold, disapproving woman who has rarely shown either woman any love. Thus begins a surprising journey of discovery, where these two sisters uncover the truth of their mother's secret past. That's probably enough for now, but I will say this: it's a totally different kind of novel for me and one that I honestly believe you'll love.

Movies. HARRY POTTER SIX!!!! Woo hoo!! Okay, I have to admit that I saw it a few weeks ago, and it is a beautifully shot, elegantly done movie. The story is just getting so, so good. I already want to see it again. Also, I really enjoyed The Proposal. What about you guys? Anything good to report?

Am I the only one hooked on Deadliest Catch? How about the Next Food Network Star???

As for books, I can tell you that Rebecca Wells' The Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder is at the top of my reading list. Rebecca is a magical storyteller, and if you haven't read her since Ya Ya's, it's about time to pick her up again.

Well, that's all the news that's fit to print for now. I think I'll go pour myself a glass of lemonade and walk down through the field and see how my apples are doing...

Aloha and enjoy the sun!



Blogger princessapr said...

Well, I have good news to report though I can't remember if I posted it to the previous entry. My sister-in-law had a cancer scare in which a bad doctor told her she had cancer. So, she went to my brother-in-law's oncologist at the George Washington University hospital who told her the doctor was full of it. It is an odd case. Worst case, it is cancer, but it can be treated locally and it wouldn't even be invasive or affect her life at all. Best case, the spot just gets removed. The sample's being retested by the NIH now. It just seems odd that a doctor would be so eager to diagnose cancer when, say, there's a possibility it is not. We are lucky that we're so close to NIH, Georgetown, George Washington and I can't say anything bad about the Virginia hospitals either.

I went to the RWA Literacy Signing last night. I didn't buy nearly as many books as in Dallas, but I bought a nice amount and rebought SEP's Heaven, Texas. :) I got home around midnight and Little Miss promptly woke up at like 6AM which is about 2 hours before her wake up time usually.

Movies - bought my ticket to HP for Saturday afternoon.

TV - the husband is obsessed with Deadliest Catch. I was on the bandwagon earlier. Otherwise, we just discovered Mad Men and have been breezing through the DVDs for the third season next month.

I'm not reading anything. Seriously. It's so sad. I picked up a Susan Mallery. I may read Julia Quinn's as I was lucky enough to pick up hers last night before she sold out.

Last night, I did recall Dallas and how nervous I get going up to authors especially authors I've never met before, but it was worth it! I'm horrible at first impressions though it helps being in that crowd and heat not being pregnant this time. The first time I posted on Jill Barnett's message board told her how much I loved a book of hers that wasn't even written by her (it was Handful of Heaven, btw). I thought I was going to have to throw my computer away in embarrassment. I did ok mingling last night, fought through the anxiety.

July 16, 2009 at 8:58 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

Dear April---

Oh, tell us more!!! How was the literacy signing? Did Susan look fabulous???

And thanks for the story about your sister in law. That's really exactly what I was talking about. The best way to protect ourselves and our loved ones is to know that sometimes doctors are just flat wrong and we need to look for better answers...


July 17, 2009 at 7:08 PM  
Blogger Chasing Inspriation said...

A good friend of ours is in his second year of battling brain cancer. He's doing amazing even with the ups and downs and chaos this has caused him and his family. Prayer is definitely a huge factor in how he's managing and how his family is adapting. It is not an easy road, not by a long shot.

We don't have cable so I miss out on all the cool shows. :) Until they come out on DVD that is. I'm trying to negotiate Netflix with the hubby but we're still recovering from my unemployment earlier this year and adjusting to our expenses (including ongoing renovations) on a salary that is less than what I was making. In the meantime, I've caught up on Supernatural and am watching Weeds. I think we're on season 3.

I've been reading a lot more romance recently. I think I need the promise of a HEA and there is that wonderful hope that romance brings. There's enough in life to cause downers, I don't need it in my reading material right now. Which is one reason I do love your books. No matter what the characters go through, I know in the end they will have hope and healing.

I'm currently reading Robin McKinley's Sunshine. It's not a recent release but it's very lyrical and has her trademark other-ness to it.

I'm hoping to see Harry Potter next weekend with a friend. There are so many movies I would love to see but so little time. :)

July 18, 2009 at 3:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Kristin.
You are so right about taking conrol of your treatment-it is the most important think you can do.It is alsi vital you have someone with you,as you need an exta set of ears.When you a facing something like this things are moving fast,and you cannot take it all in--the brain is not working.I can't stress how important it is to have someone along to take in the details that you sometimes miss.Thank god for sisters.Hope your summer is going well.We have been on a few little trips --but not to far.I have been thinking about your friend every day,and hope everything is going to be fine.Cancer treatment is like being tossed in a blender,at least thats how I felt.Please forgive my typing,I will never be a blogger.
Big Hugs

July 18, 2009 at 5:00 PM  
Blogger Gypsy said...

Hi Kristin (and all),

I found your comment about finding the BEST doctor and treatment very interesting. One of my dearest friends was also recently diagnosed with breast cancer and in the course of a PET scan a spot on her liver was also discovered. She has been 'interviewing' doctors and has been non too pleased. One even told her he would order up the chemo treatment right then and there because that is how it is done. She was with her husband, the doctor talked to him (not her) and referred to her in the THIRD PERSON. She is still looking but has found a couple of doctors she likes who are tops in the field. She is planning to be at work when school resumes in August. More power to her!

I finished reading OML and loved it! I have also read a couple of non-fiction books that were okay.
I am currently reading Byron Katie's, Loving What Is (and doing the work). So many books, so little time! On my shelf, The Help by Kathryn Stockett that has come recommended by a friend, Shanghai Girls by Lisa See that was also recommended, and enough others to see me through a winter snowstorm (but I live in the Phoenix area).

I look forward to your newest release -- I am estranged from my sisters and I am interested in how you have chosen to work that story.

TV? - So You Think You Can Dance (I love the energy and enthusiasm of the young dancers) and I am excited that Design Star begins tonight and Project Runway is just around the corner.

I have been spending time with friends and dreaming of semi-retirement (I don't know when that will come but I WILL be ready when it does).

Love to read your blog and look forward to reading Winter Garden.


July 19, 2009 at 2:33 PM  
Blogger princessapr said...

The signing was fantastic. I actually got in Julia Quinn's line when it was only 3 people long. I said I wouldn't stand in line, but I couldn't resist such a short line. Then, I went to Susan Elizabeth Phillips' who had a short line, too. It was great seeing her again. Later, I went back to take a photo with her (the photo is on my blog which I think you can click on my name to view - it's maybe the second or third entry). I also met up with a bunch of people from her message board. I didn't really go to the signing with an agenda so it was more to walk around. In Dallas, there were tons of authors that I wanted to meet. I guess I've been going to enough signings, that I just wanted to shake hands and say hi to some favorites or new-to-me authors.

I saw the Harry Potter movie and enjoyed myself. It inspired me to reread the series.

Winter Garden is going to be a tough one because Adele Ashworth had that title and that's still what I think of when I hear the title. That said, I'm always excited to read a new one. I have a friend who just discovered Firefly Lane and I can't wait until she gets to the backlist!

July 20, 2009 at 10:58 AM  

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