It is a sorry tale. I thought I was so smart tearing down the old kitchen ceiling while my husband and kids were away on a college search mission. I hated that ceiling with a passion. But still, I have lived to regret my impulsiveness. Pictures at the end for those who like visuals.

The first three days went well. I spent a couple of hours each evening after work tearing out the old ceiling and cleaning up the GIGANTIC mess that resulted. I’d pry and pull and rip with glee until I’d almost reached the point where I might drop a hammer on my head and then I’d stop and make the place livable for getting ready for work the next day. My plan was to deconstruct Tuesday through Friday and replace the ceiling Saturday and Sunday. And other than the wood under the panels that now looked like slats but were probably once sheets of wood and were a PAIN to get down, things went okay.

On Friday I had two set backs.

1) It looked as though I was going to have to take down the kitchen cabinets (there are only 4) to get the rest of the ceiling down. I just couldn’t pry the remaining bits of slats and panel out.

2) My neighbor looked at the wiring and about had a hard attack. That was going to have to go. (I discovered later that the proper tripping mechanism for the fuse box would take care of that without having to replace the wiring. And now that I think of it, we may already have those doohickeys in the fuse box.) My neighbor cut the offending wire (after the appropriate fuse was turned off,) and capped it off.

On Saturday I had a larger set back:

The family decided it was going to come home a day early.

Panic ensued. Neighbors came to help. Thank Goodness for Steven, Ryan and Joe. They came to my aid. I would say they rescued me, but that’s not very PC these days, and also implies I couldn’t have gotten myself out of the hole I dug myself into. I could, just not as fast. However, even with the power trio in my court we could not get done.  For one thing – rewiring. For another it was just a much larger job than I imagined.  Also, they did it their way. Not that I’m complaining, but I would have done it differently. Will less conferring, less framing and less following of the codes! (Not that we have many codes here in Vermont.) If we’d done what I was going to do we may have even finished the job. But as I said, I’m not complaining.

So, due to the messing with wires, we have no light in our kitchen, pantry, downstairs bathroom, and up and down stairs hall lights. We also lost power to the outlets in one of my sons’ rooms. Way on the other side of the house on an upper floor. Why all those things were wired together?  I have no clue. I think a drunken farmer wired our house.  Hopefully, as I write, the electrician is at the house fixing the electricity problem. Then I’m getting two more lights in the kitchen where it’s so dark.  Yay!

Then I can finish the last bit of framing, put some insulation in the ceiling to reduce noise between the up and downstairs’ rooms. Then the new paneling. Not the recycled barn materials I had hoped for, but some nice bead board (or is that beaded board?). So I’m not getting exactly what I want, but it’s going to be higher and brighter and hopefully will add value.

And the beams! I uncovered the most beautiful dirty and soot stained beams. I’ll clean them. They are fab.

Did I mention that a bunch of the lathing or whatever it was under the ceiling was charred? I guess when they had that fire years and years ago they didn’t bother pulling out the burned wood. They just covered it over. I am so glad that stuff is gone from my ceiling. No wonder the house stinks when it’s damp. It’s probably full of burned wood that’s been covered over. Yikes.

Now for those of you that like visuals:  Pictures!


I’m misbehaving, but I can’t tell you about it until I’m done. Although, come to think of it I could tweet about it. No one adverse to what I’m doing would see it there.

I’ll post pictures when it’s fait accompli. Until then:


So my three youngest three kids were in a musical this weekend.  Working.  Which I had never heard of before.

I have to say they did a fabulous job.  Child number four was in the chorus so I don’t really have good clips of her, so you get Boy one and Boy two. You should thank me – I’m only putting up one song each.  Proud mom here.

In order of song:  Boy number two –

This is boy number one:

Feel free to tell me how fabulous they are! I never tire of hearing that.

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Is my brain on… on what?  I’m not sure exactly. I’ve been thinking a lot. A lot a lot. (You can credit Shrek for that one I think.) Firstly about Bree. Which is good in that it is making the book better, but also bad because it means more rewriting, which in turn means more time before that sucker comes out. And I’ve got to get Bree out before I can go back to Glimmer Girls which a number of you are clamoring for.  Not that I blame you. It’s a pretty good story.

I’ve also been thinking about climate change and owing the IRS a big chunk of money. What is it about money that lends itself to one crisis after another? Why is there no catching up? I’m not whinging, mind you. I just really want to know.

Here’s the thing about climate change: It’s horrible and beautiful. We have an exhibit up at the Museum at the moment: Water Ways: Tension and Flow.  The images – you know what? Instead of telling you I’ll show you a couple:




James Balog, American, born 1952

Birthday Canyon, Greenland Ice Sheet, from the series Extreme Ice Survey

June 28, 2009

Chromogenic print

Melting Glacier.  Need I say more?

step well




Edward Burtynsky, Canadian, born 1955

Stepwell #2, Panna Meena, Amber, Rajasthan, India,   2010

Digital chromogenic color print.

This is a step well in a community where people used to gather, collect water and swim. The water is being drawn off in other ways now, and it is no longer potable. Although people do still gather there. It’s a cool space. They just no longer collect water or swim.



Daniel Beltrá, Spanish, born 1964

Alter Do Chao, Para (Brasil), from the series Amazon Drought

October 2005
Epson Ultrachrome K3 pigment print on paper

This used to be a lush tropical paradise. Now it’s stranded boats and rotting fish.  I don’t find this image beautiful. But it is a terrible warning.

Now you may chat among yourselves.  Do you believe that the earth’s climate is changing? And if not, why not. And if not, what possible reason could anyone have for lying about it?

I’m opening a can of worms. It’s been that kind of day.


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Welcome Maisey Yates!

  1. YatesTell us a little about yourself and your books?I’m Maisey, USA Today Bestselling author of Quite A Few romances. I write dark, emotional books for Harlequin Presents with billionaires, set in exotic locales that I hope make you laugh a little and cry a lot. I also write contemporary romances about cowboys set in my home state of Oregon that I hope make you laugh a lot and cry a little.
  1. What drew you to romance in the first place? I found my first romances at Goodwill, mostly Harlequin Presents. I was twenty-one when I read my first one, and that was when I KNEW what I wanted to write. I was drawn to them as a reader, and then to be a romance writer out of that love I had for them.
  1. 3. Dogs or cats? I have both, so that’s a very hard question. But I’ve rarely been without a dog, so it’s probably dog.
  1. Wine or beer? Light or dark / red or white? none of the above. Coffee and Diet Coke. :)
  1. Chocolate or other? Chocolate
  1. Beach or mountain? Well, I love the beach, but I live in the mountains. I really love both…
  1. How do you decide on the settings / character focus? All of my books come about so differently. Sometimes a setting inspires me first, sometimes a character. For Part Time Cowboy, I did think a lot about the town before anything else. I love Oregon, I live in Oregon, and I enjoy writing about it. I chose the coast because it has the best of both worlds here — mountains AND the beach.
  1. What do you most admire about your characters? Both of them have to let go of a lot of pain to move on. They have really hard things in their pasts and I think it takes a lot of strength to let go of pain and choose love.
  1. What’s next on tap for you?  (What do we have to look forward to!) Well, more of the Copper Ridge series will be out late May and late July (Brokedown Cowboy and Bad News Cowboy) and in June I have a multi-author serial series launching called The Forbidden series (my contribution is called the Billionaire’s Intern) which is going to be the fun, sexy romance version of a Netflix binge.
  1. What is the one thing you’d like readers to know about you? I like a badger joke, as you’ll see when you read my books.
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  • One Grand Prize: An eBook of Shoulda Been a Cowboy by Maisey Yates and an Amazon Gift Card for $25
Book & Author details:
Part Time Cowboy by Maisey Yates
(Copper Ridge #1)
Published by: Harlequin
Publication date: March 31st 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance


A one-time bad girl comes home to small-town Oregon in the first in a sexy, heartfelt new series from USA TODAY bestselling author Maisey Yates…

Sadie Miller isn’t expecting any welcome-home parades on her return to Copper Ridge. Least of all from parttimerancher, full-time lawman Eli Garrett. The straight-laced, impossibly hot deputy sheriff glares at her like she’s the same teenage hoodlum who fled town ten years ago. But running from her demons has brought Sadie full circle, ready to make a commitment at last. Not to a man, but to a B and B. On Garrett land. Okay, so her plan has a tiny flaw…

Eli works too hard to let a blonde ball of trouble mess up his town. But keeping an eye on Sadie makes it tough to keep his hands off her. And if she’s so wrong for him, why does being with her feel so right?


USA Today Bestselling author Maisey Yates lives in rural Oregon with her three children and her husband, whose chiseled jaw and arresting features continue to make her swoon. She feels the epic trek she takes several times a day from her office to her coffee maker is a true example of her pioneer spirit.

In 2009, at the age of twenty-three Maisey sold her first book. Since then it’s been a whirlwind of sexy alpha males and happily ever afters, and she wouldn’t have it any other way. Maisey divides her writing time between dark, passionate category romances set just about everywhere on earth and light sexy contemporary romances set practically in her back yard. She believes that she clearly has the best job in the world.

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