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HOLIDAY SALE

Saturday, December 8, 2018



Special Holiday Sale!
Three Days Only

Buy the C'mon Inn Mystery Trilogy ebook for only $5.99.

Makes a great gift, too. Be sure to tell your friends!


"I just finished reading the three stories in this one package and enjoyed the hell of it. Quirky characters, great plots and true-to-life dialogue. Highly recommended!" - DC

Ciao for now!

Getting ready for Disney!

Thursday, December 6, 2018


...a Disney cruise, that is. Stu has been on them before with his late wife and other grandkids. This will be my first time and our granddaugher, Waverly's, as well. We are leaving early tomorrow morning, dropping off the #2Doods and driving to Orlando. Waverly will arrive on Sunday, spend the night with us while her mom flies back to Maryland, then we drive to Port Canaveral on Monday for the cruise.

Yes, we're all excited!! Oh, and no internet on this cruise, so no pictures until we get back home.

Ciao for now!

...and the deed is done!

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Just a little catch-up before our next adventure. We took the #2doods to Copyright Pet Resort on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and headed out early on Thanksgiving day for our drive to Maryland for Stu's brother's wedding on Saturday.

Traffic was light but we lost almost an hour getting breakfast at a McDonald's - they had four employees call in and service was SLOW. Lunch was at a Flying J with a Denny's. Stu got the traditional Thanksgiving meal and I got their Super Bird (turkey sandwich). He did better staying with what he should eat than I did...lol.


We spent Thanksgiving night at a Holiday Inn in Roanoke and got to watch our FAVORITE show via ME.TV, the Thanksgiving episode of WKRP. I snapped a few photos of the television while watching. What a hoot! [click for larger images]


Our final day of driving took us to Annapolis where we checked into an older Best Western late afternoon. The interior of the rooms had been redone and were nice but you could see daylight through the door frame and the walls were paper thin. They were busy both Friday and Saturday nights, Sunday was quieter. Friday night was when we learned how thin the walls were. I was woken out of a deep sleep around 12:30 by the ecstatic sounds of lovemaking in the room beside us. Again at 2:30 and again at 6:30. We had to laugh, that was a first for us.

Saturday was the wedding day and rain was in the forecast. We hoped it would hold off but Mother Nature had her own schedule. There was a lot of family in attendance from both sides, bride & groom. Lots of kids and grandkids, too. Here are a few photos...you can see all the ones I took in our SmugMug album.

Before everyone arrived...


Keeping the little 'uns occupied...


The bride talking to her prospective step-daughter...


The paster, groom and best man waiting...










The brothers and all their girls!

If you are on Facebook, you can view the requisite marshmallow fight in this link. Everyone had a blast, as always. Four McNicol weddings, all with a marshmallow fight at the end. And yes, it was all picked back up - the kids treat that like another game.

We went to the movies on Sunday, family were all busy with their own plans. We saw Widows. Wow! Intense but good. Several unexpected twists kept us guessing. We left early on Monday and drove over 400 miles, spending the night in Bristol, TN area. That let us get home early afternoon on Tuesday. Monday night was bitter cold with a touch of snow. We were happy we could see our car from our hotel window and the remote starter made quick work of the snow/ice.


We did hit a little snow at the top of the mountain...hard to see, it was pretty light but we could see it blowing across the road.


Knoxville had a great alert sign showing as we passed through - of course, there is a whole generation who has no idea what a phone booth is!


Finally, a couple of sights we enjoyed on the trip home...




Ciao for now!

November 13 2018: Enjoy the Simple Things

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

"Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler."
Albert Einstein

Till next month...

Lots of the "same old, same old"....

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Where does the time go? Not much is changing here...the Backend of Nowhere Garage is (was) progressing quickly till we needed a materials order. But that's okay, it's allowed us to catch up on a whole host of things like:
  • Winterizing the RV (we winterized for possible guests in early October)
  • Getting the RV ready for our move southerly come mid-December
  • Running errands
  • Sorting through clothes for our upcoming Disney cruise (see more below)
  • Sorted through the clutter on our desks (okay, so they are already cluttered again, but it's all new stuff)
  • I'm doing the 20 days of mental wellness challenge on my author blog
  • I'm writing (NaNoWriMo), or trying to, or researching for book four, Paradise Dream
  • Still sorting through clothes & other stuff, cleaning out things unused or not fitting us
  • Still losing weight, a bit more slowly but losing
  • Buying new clothes (see more below)
  • Movies! We saw Hunter Killer and absolutely loved it. I'd go see it again!
  • Oil changes! Freightliner, Zero-turn, lawn tractor, push lawn mower. Oh, and fuel stabilizer in them all.
  • I'm sure there is more....lol
Murphy has been helping me with my writing...he's so sweet. (lol)


We will be in Maryland later this month for Stu's brother Scott's wedding. It will be a quick trip because when we get back, we immediately start getting ready for our Disney Cruise with our four year old grand-girl, Waverly. There is a pirate night and we all have matching shirts with Daddoo, Nonna and Waverly on them. Stu and I have appropriate pants & red sashes and Stu has a bandana. We bought Waverly a cute little red tutu at Walmart and ordered these adorable leggings to go with them.
Tutu for Waverly's pirate night

Of course, I had to get the co-ordinated top to go home with her. LOL!

These are the custom shirts we ordered...ours say Daddoo, Nonna & Waverly. Both Wavy & I have the Minnie Mouse with the red bow.

We also got Waverly her own backpack string bag as a memory of the cruise and personalized water bottles for us all.


Clothes - Stu has lost significant weight as mentioned in another post. His pants have gone from a 38 waist to a 34 and he's gone from relaxed fit to slim fit jeans. His XL shirts and jackets are HUGE. We are watching sales and have gotten him a new navy blue blazer, two new dress shirts and a new tie, new jeans and new polo shirts. I've gone from men's XL and L t-shirts to a few L as well as M. So he has inherited a bunch of my old Harley t-shirts, too.

One other thing we are collecting for both our Disney and Carnival cruises are little rubber ducks. If you are on Facebook, check out Cruising Ducks. We've ordered a bunch from Oriental Trading when they had free shipping as well as a few from eBay and even some things from the Dollar Tree. I still have to make their tags, but it will be fun to hide them and think about the smiles when someone finds them.

Dollar Tree duck stuff for cruises

Another first, we were hoping to snag one of the Aldi's Wine Advent Calendars that were released yesterday. No luck, the lady told us they were sold out by 9:15 yesterday morning. She said this is the first year they've sold them in the US and she hopes they will rise to the demand for next year. It was our first stop in an Aldi's and while stock is limited, we were impressed with the prices, especially for meats. We will go back again for sure.

While we were in town, we stopped at Tractor Supply to check out the flannel shirts they had on sale for $9.99 (yes, Stu got one). While wandering around, I looked up and saw this! Creepy angry birds!


We had warm weather late into fall, then the temps dropped drastically and we finally got see a little color. A week later and it's fading fast. Here are a few shots I took from the car while running errands.




Hope all is well in your neck of the woods! Oh, and here is a photo of the Backend of Nowhere Garage as it sits now.


Ciao for now!

Halloween Memories from the 50s

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Growing up in a small New England town, Halloween was a big deal. We weren't the norm since both parents worked. Our father worked at the local Post Office and our mother was an R.N., typically working the graveyard shift so she could spend evenings with our family.

Our costumes were store-bought. You remember them - thin polyester/plastic-like material, scratchy and ill fitting. Most of them were one piece - you stepped into them and there was a skinny string tie at the back of your neck. There was a hard plastic mask that made it hard to breath and see at the same time. Often, that came off before the night was out. But if you were real lucky, your mask was just a mini one, black with eyeholes and it sat on top of your nose. Oh, did I mention how much the costumes itched? I think I was a witch most years. That was popular as well as ghosts and clowns. Superman was a hit, too.

When we got older, we sometimes got creative. Hobos were easy to fix, gypsies were fun, as well as cowboys since most of us had our toy guns (with holsters) and a cowboy hat - as evidenced by me in this photo (approx. age 5).

L-R: Aunt Anne Blanchard, Uncle Oscar Lamsa holding my youngest brother Kendall, my brother Charlie, me, neighborhood friends David and Stephen Marshall.

We always went trick or treating on the actual day of Halloween. We walked our own neighborhood while it was daylight and if we were lucky, there might be an early evening visit to relatives or even a school/church party.

The weather was another thing. I can remember many Halloweens when we were bundled up in several layers of clothing under our costumes since the temperature had dropped dramatically in that final week of October.

What do you remember about Halloween as a kid?

Ciao for now!

"I found a quilted heart..."

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

No, I didn't, but many others have. I started following their Facebook page, I think I originally saw a shared story from another page and it intrigued me. Every day now, I see one or more story about finding their quilted hearts. Some of the stories will bring you to tears, others make you smile. But they're all good.

The instructions to participate are simple...

1.  Sew It:
Create a unique handcrafted heart. (Use original heart pictured above for inspiration.)
Attach a tag listing the web site www.ifoundaquiltedheart.com and a note that says, “I Need A Home.”

2.  Sow It:
Put it in a public place to be found by someone you don’t know.
Think of clever places where someone would not be expecting to see a quilted heart.

3.  So It: Can find a new home!

Want to learn more about this project? Maybe even participate? Your heart might be the highlight of someone's day.
Ciao for now!

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