Mama Diaries

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Ukulele Club

When I got my teenaged daughter a ukulele for Christmas, I didn't think it was going to become a new trend. My daughter really took to the thing, and started going on YouTube to learn how to play all kinds of songs. Whenever her friends come over, she plays. And so do they. In fact, all of her friends now have ukuleles.

Now they have a new thing:  The Ukulele Club. A group of girls bring their instruments and strum tunes during lunch. I guess it's rather entertaining for everyone.

The trend seems to have caught on. The other day, as I drove my daughter to school, we saw another young lady walking, holding her ukulele. "Do you know her?" I asked.

"No, but now everyone wants to play the ukulele."

I guess so. I will say one thing. When my daughter and her friends are in my car, and I'm driving them some place, I never have to put on the radio. They bring their ukuleles and provide the music.

In case you want to hear some good playing, here's a video by IZ, which kind of inspired me to get the ukulele in the first place:


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Question of the Month and Banana Phone

It's time for Question of the Month hosted by Michael D'Agostino. Actually, it's past time. I'm late again. Oh well. The question is, "Have you ever had to make a difficult decision which you didn't want to do, but you knew it was for the best?"

The answer is, yes. I've actually had to make quite a few of them. One of the more recent was during my move from Ohio to Georgia about three years ago. I was the president-elect of the Ohio String Teacher's Association. My term as president was supposed to begin just as I was leaving. I was looking forward to serving as president, and I had a lot of big plans. I could've done it from Georgia, but it would have been a challenge. So I decided to step down and let someone else who lived in Ohio take the position. It was very disappointing for me, but I knew it was for the best.

Have you ever had to make any difficult decisions like that?

Now for the story: 

I was sitting at the dinner table when I heard a cell phone ring. It didn't sound like mine. A few seconds later, my son came into the kitchen.

"Mama, you have a call."

I turned around, and found my son holding a rather peculiar looking phone. It was yellow and shaped like a familiar fruit. But it had writing on it.

"Dude," I said. "What's this?"

"A banana phone. You'd better answer it."

So I did. And I had a nice conversation with the monkey on the other end.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Dog Genius

Our hundred pound German Shepherd, Schultz, is now six years old. (Which means I must've been blogging for six years, since he was just a puppy when I first started.) The dog is rather smart, but he never seemed to know my name. He knew "Daddy," and "Bubba," and my daughter's name. But not "Mama."

Time and time again, we'd ask him to "get Mama." and he never would. He'd go to the window and look out, even though I was standing two feet away from him.

Well, some kind of connection finally happened in his dog brain. The day he turned six, he figured it out.

"Go get Mama," my husband said.

And he did!

We made a big fuss about it.

We asked him the next day, and he remembered.

It's been a whole two weeks, and he still knows who I am. Who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks?

Monday, September 26, 2016


My twelve-year-old son had a class field trip to a place called Biz Town. At Biz Town, the kids are given grown-up jobs. They spend seven hours that day working their grown-up jobs. My boy's job was as CFO (chief financial officer) of Delta Airlines. I don't know how the boy got selected for that one, but he was the man.

He had one of the largest offices in the place, and a steady stream of "employees" consulting him about budgeting and payment issues. The boy was kept busy the entire day. While he enjoyed one of the highest salaries, he was not thrilled with the small amount of free time he had. "Everyone else got to check things out, while I had to sit behind the desk and deal with piles of papers!"

"So, how did you do?" I asked.

"We didn't go bankrupt," he said.

"That's good," I said.

"But we only ended up with $200 for operating costs for the next day."

Hmmm. Well, at least it's nice to know that Delta Airlines has lived to fly another day.

Before I go, I want to let you know I'm giving away free downloads of my book, Ten Zany Birds, on Smashwords. If you'd like to get one, follow the link and use coupon code WJ95M. Offer expires October 26, 2016.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

A Rude Awakening

My teenaged daughter doesn't like to clean her room. Ever. I keep telling her that if she doesn't clean it, and she keeps bringing food up there, she's going to end up having bugs. She didn't believe me. I'm just the Mama. What do I know?

Well, last night, she got a rude awakening.  Literally. While she slept, a rather large insect was prowling around her room. It ended up in her bed. She was unaware of its existence until she felt something tickling the palm of her hand. Do you know what it was? A centipede! A big one! The thing was crawling in the of the palm of her hand. 

She screamed and threw it on the ground. Then she tried to kill it. But it escaped - under her bed among the piles of trash.

Now she's terrified to be in her room, because of course the centipede is going to seek revenge. And we're quite certain there's an army of critters under there to help it.

"I have to clean my room!" she said. "And not just my dressers. Everywhere! The bugs must die!"

Yes, indeed. Thank you, Mr. Centipede! 

Before I go, I'd like to let you know that my blog friend, Robyn Proctor has featured my book, That Mama is a Grouch, on her blog. That was so nice of her! If you'd like to read the review, please go

Friday, September 16, 2016

Question of the Month and Burning the House Down

I'm a little late this month for the Question of the Month. But hey, better late than never. Host, Michael Agostino's question is:  What kind of music speaks to you the most?

Classical. It's more complex than most of the popular music your hear on the radio. I actually get kind of annoyed with the same I, IV, V chord progressions that are used in popular music. (I know, if you're not a musician like me, you have no idea what I just said.) I've been known to turn off popular songs because they're too boring, musically. My brain likes complex things. And I really enjoy performing classical music, because in doing so, it evokes an emotional response. I feel music when I play. 

What kind of music speaks to you?

Now for the story.

My twelve-year-old son, Bubba, likes to cook. Yesterday, he decided he was going to make dinner. He began cooking. A short time later, I smelled something funny. I came downstairs and found the kitchen filled with smoke.

"What are you doing, Bubba?" I asked, opening the back door to let the smoke clear. "Trying to burn down the house?"

"No, Mama." He pointed to a box on the kitchen counter. Bubba Burgers. "I'm making Bubba Burgers. The directions said to fry them three minutes on each side."

"And did you?"

"Well, maybe one side was four minutes."

Uh huh. (In case you're wondering, Bubba said his Bubba Burger was delicious. I can't verify that, because I didn't try one. You'll just have to take his word for it.)

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Timeless Maiden of Time Cover Reveal and Giveaway

Today, I get to reveal Crystal Collier's cover of her new book, Timeless. It looks awesome! Check it out!

TIMELESS (#3 Maiden of Time) by Crystal Collier

Book Title: TIMELESS (Maiden of Time #3)
Author: Crystal Collier
Genre: YA Paranormal Historical
Release Date: November 1, 2016


In 1771, Alexia had everything: the man of her dreams, reconciliation with her father, even a child on the way. But she was never meant to stay. It broke her heart, but Alexia heeded destiny and traveled five hundred years back to stop the Soulless from becoming.

In the thirteenth century, the Holy Roman Church has ordered the Knights Templar to exterminate the Passionate, her bloodline. As Alexia fights this new threat—along with an unfathomable evil and her own heart—the Soulless genesis nears. But none of her hard-won battles may matter if she dies in childbirth before completing her mission.

Can Alexia escape her own clock?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Crystal Collier is an eclectic author who pens clean fantasy/sci-fi, historical, and romance stories with the occasional touch of humor, horror, or inspiration. She practices her brother-induced ninja skills while teaching children or madly typing about fantastic and impossible creatures. She has lived from coast to coast and now calls Florida home with her creative husband, four littles, and “friend” (a.k.a. the zombie locked in her closet). Secretly, she dreams of world domination and a bottomless supply of cheese. You can find her on her Blog, FacebookGoodreads, or follow her on Twitter.

Want the first chapter free? Sign up HERE.