Merry Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Maddie here. Carol's been bogged down with getting ready for Xmas, going to parties, meeting up with friends and then...of all things...trying a case last week. However, tomorrow we drive [yea, road trip!!!] to Montgomery to be with her sister and brother-in-law for the holiday.

So Carol and I would like to wish everyone a joyous and safe Christmas!!!! Maddie

Golf Cart Parade of Lights

Monday, December 10, 2007

Tonight Maddie and I along with a friend attended a 'Golf Cart Parade of Lights'. I know...only in Florida but what a hoot and a half! People deck their golf carts with lights and decorations and drive around the streets. The event kicks off with hot dogs and hamburgers and games for the kids. Unfortunately, a few hard showers did put a few kinks in the celebration, but a great time was had by all. My Maddie handled the crowds like a lady she was. Everyone ooo'd and ahh'd over her red bow. :) Carol


Sunday, December 9, 2007

Recently, I saw two very different but great movies. First was August Rush with that fabulous child star Freddie Highmore. Wonderful movie, very mystical and inspiring. Whoever was the musical director blended rock with classical seamlessly. Kerri Russell is luminous.

TodayI saw The Golden of the best roles I've ever seen Nicole Kidman in. And Daniel Craig, yum!!! My major complaint was not enough air time with him. I also questioned one thing about the story, but won't say anything here for fear of spoiling the plot for others. Of course, the special effects were fabulous, particulary the armored polar bear. I hope they don't delay on the sequel the way the producers did on Chronicles of Narnia. The movies need to come out like Harry Potter, one a year.

But both movies are 'must' buys for me when they come out on DVD; I also have to get the CD for August Rush for the music. :) Carol

Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Maddie here. Tonight Carol and I sat outside, simply enjoying the evening. My human mentioned how lucky we were to have each other and a place to call home. She was so spot on with her observation that I even let Little Darling sleep in her lap while I lay beside her on the pool deck. Life is good. Even though Carol will go to a friend's house for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, I know she'll bring me a treat. In the morning we'll sit together and watch the parades, and she'll scratch me behind my ears...heaven!

I'm a lucky pup and I hope everyone tomorrow has a great and safe Thanksgiving. Maddie

The Bachelor

Monday, November 19, 2007

I 'discovered' The Bachelor show during its second season. A number of people at work would discussed the cat fights and who would be the final pick. I began watching the program and was fairly dead on about the final woman/man. But after the one goofball bachelor and his 'promise' ring, I called it quits. You knew exactly the personality types the producers would pick to make the show enticing to viewers.

Due to Dancing With the Stars, I caught a number of previews and because I was doing the touch-up painting tonight, I listened to the final episode as I painted. Same old, same old. The first thing that struck me as odd was one of the earlier previews had shown the foot of one of the two finalists stepping out of the limo...and she was wearing a red dress. I thought it was strange for unless all the women wore red, the producers had given away 'the one'. Then I saw the two ladies and neither wore red. So I thought the twist might be the guy reverting back to a woman he'd already dumped.

Nope, he dumped both of the final two. I'll have to give the guy credit. In the past, the Bachelors would lie through their teeth and once the camera faded, then dump the unlucky woman. At least this season's Bachelor had the courage to say, 'no, I don't want to marry either one and I don't want to make empty promises.'

But it is really time for this program to go. After all these seasons, only 2 success stories in terms of relationships. I would think the 15 minutes of fame just isn't worth all the strife the contestants go through.

Shrug, Carol

Another glitch in the family room makeover

Murphy's law in home improvement projects: they always take longer than one figures.

Case in point. This weekend I finished sanding all the areas where the paint tape took off the paint and applied the primer. But late Saturday I spotted a corner of the carpet sticking up so I decided to pull up a bit to see what I would be dealing with. My original plan was to use the upcoming 4-day weekend to rip up the carpet and lay down the tile.

Well, when I lifted the carpet I found another carpet underneath. Yep, the people just put the current carpet over another. I don't even want to think about the accumulated dirt and mold. This means I will have to tear up 2 carpets. The one bright note is that it appears the bottom carpet was rubber they may have used it in place of a pad. The rubber's disintegrated but when I scraped away some of the rubber muck, it looked like no mastic was used over the concrete [this room used to be the garage]. Scraping off rubber is a heck of a lot easier then dealing with carpet glue. But room makeover isn't going to be finished by next weekend like I was hoping. Probably looking at another 2-3 weekends of work. Sigh, Carol

Ms. Tool Time

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I'm so far gone in the home improvement arena. My sister wanted to know what is on my Xmas list, and my number one item was a screwdriver. Sometime over the course of the family makeover, I have lost my belowed screwdriver that I'd bought from Sears.

Granted, it was girly-girl with purple flowers on the handle, but in addition to the regular screwdriver head, it came with a Phillips head that you stored in the handle. The sucker was fabulous for the hurricane shutters as there are a myriad of screws used to secure them, and I could simply switch the driver around.

I loved that screwdriver; I miss that screwdriver.

So it's my number one item on my Xmas list. :) Carol

Florida Dept of Health

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The entertainment news shows were buzzing about someone's mother dying after surgery. A number of people came forward about medical malpractice actions against the doctor, and the question was being asked why the mother went to the doctor in the first place.

If you're looking up Florida doctors, you can access information about any malpractice awards or disciplinary actions online. I suspect other states also have public access to the information. Here are the links to the Florida Dept. of Health.

FL-DOH MQA Services Home page

Click on the Citizen/consumer link and then plug in the name; to narrow the search, enter the county. Then open up the various tabs of information to learn whether the doctor is board certified, hospital privileges, etc. If you are unsure of how the doctor's name is spelled, type in the first few letters you do know. Many a claimant butchers the name of a doctor he/she has previously seen [deliberately or otherwise], and I normally can hone in on the right doctor using this method.

The information is out there; please check out a doctor, get references and a second opinion before undergoing any serious procedure or treatment. Carol

18th Anniversary today

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Today was my 18th anniversary working as a staff legal attorney for my employer. My supervising attorney bought me a vase of purple flowers to celebrate the occasion. As with any job there have been ups and downs, but I've been really fortunate for the past several years. The two women who currently serve as the managing attorney and the workers' compensation supervising attorney are bonafide angels on earth. How they ever got stuck with me is a mystery. I can't imagine anyone ever referring to me as an angel; I'd probably punch the person in the arm and tell him/her to get real.

One of the claimant attorneys that I butt heads with on files calls me "feisty"; I can live with that description. However, today as I was speaking with another member of our firm who came in to congratulate me, I realized that angels on earth need warriors to protect them, and that's why I was placed with these wonderful women.

I can live with that notion as well. :) Carol

Thank God, the 'Chest' is gone!

I have to admit that I was getting very tired of Cameron's chest on Dancing with the Stars. When he bared his chest for the foxtrot last night, I had to leave the room. Enough was enough.

Even though I've reached an internal accord that if man won again, it would be due to the woman partner's superb choreography, still...

I want a woman star to win this year, even if it means Mel, whose personality grates me raw. Semi-finals next week and "Lord of the Dance" Michael Flatley dancing, can't wait! :) Carol

Those little white lies in instructions

Monday, November 12, 2007

I love all the lies they tell in instructions...or constructions as my nephew called them when he was young. I bought 3 Roman shades last weekend for the long window in the family room. One shade per window section, meaning a total of six brackets, 18 screws to install. The instructions said it would take 15 minutes to install one shade.

Ha! I spent nearly 3 hours getting the suckers hung. First there are those cryptic diagrams now used in place of actual written directions..if you can figure out the squiggles and arrows. Lining up the drilled holes for the screws drove me nuts [and yes, I used a pencil to mark the holes]. The drill bit would skid on the concrete sill, throwing the holes off.

But the shades are up and look least I think so. Despite the instructions. :) Carol

A cab ride, a cigarette smoke and a pawn shop visit

Thursday, November 8, 2007

These were the price of a good man's life. Yesterday, an inmate, while being transported to the courthouse for the second day of his trial, overpowered the deputy sheriff, shot and mortally wounded him. After leaving the officer in a parking lot, the criminal drove the van a short distance before abandoning it. He then hitchhiked and also grabbed a cab ride. Finally, he bummed a cigarette off a bystander and smoked it before going into a pawn shop where he was captured.

Four hours of 'freedom' over.

Now for the kicker. The deputy was 76 years old and the killer in his 40's. Once he disarmed the deputy, all the cretin had to do was walk away. He didn't have to kill the officer. And for what? For 4 hours of nothing? The creep had already been convicted of 2 armed robberies and was up for a third, but now he'll be heading to death row.

The authorities believed there were accomplishes and this was a planned escape. Sure sounds like the idiots didn't plan beyond overpowering the guard.

The murdered officer? A retired postal worker who then became a respected deputy sheriff working in the transportation department. Reportedly he often worked 2 jobs to support his family.

Versus cretin who robbed grocery stores and killed a good man for a cab ride, a cigarette and a pawn shop visit. Carol

DWTS results

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Jane Seymour brought such class to the show, but it was time to exit. However, who is going to win is a mystery to me with Sabrina being knocked out so unexpectedly. I rolled on the floor with laughter when I learned that everyone was doing their own lines because of the writers' strike...The hosts have written lines?!? I do wish the producers would stop with trying to make an hour show of the results. There is just too much filler. They easily could have canned that 'review' panel piece. I could well imagine the 3 wrote their own lines: they stunk.

My thoughts are with the Osmond family on the death of their father. I know the familiar saying is no parent wants a child to die before them, but losing a parent leaves such a hole in one's heart. I hope George got to watch Marie's performance on Monday night.

One thing I'll always cherish is Mom hung on long enough to sing me 'happy birthday' one last time. She passed away early the next day. While I now always experience a sense of sadness on my birthday, I also wrap around me the memory of her singing.



Monday, November 5, 2007

My apologies to Jenny. Tonight I forgot to write down her number, and by the time I realized the omission, it was too late to look it up and vote. I've been splitting my vote among Marie and then Jenny and Helio [as I love the brother-sister dance team of Julieann and Derek].

I was glad to see all the teams bounce back from last week, although no one managed to pull together 2 great performances. Still, all in all, the level of performances is so much higher than prior years [conceding that I missed the first season]. For me at this point the loss of any team will be tough as I enjoy the nuances of each one's style. :) Carol

Dancing With The Stars: Shell-shocked

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Okay, Sabina/Sabrina was not my personal favorite, but given her performances up to last night, I figured she would be one of the final two. And while my sentimental favs are Jane Seymour and Marie Osmond [okay, so I'm dating myself], I knew it was time for both of them to take their final bows.

I don't know what happened with last night's voting, but if the purpose of the show is to award the best dancer, that premise got royally screwed. I realize popularity and the counter-vote culture that developed during this year's AI play a role, but come on. Sigh, Carol

Maddie on behalf of the Weekend Warrior

Monday, October 29, 2007

Maddie here.

Carol's a puddle of Jell-o on the sofa. Although she says that she's a puddle, she also complains that every muscle and bone in her body aches and she's too tired to write. I didn't know puddles had bodies. I love to splish-splash through every puddle I can find and if one had a bone, I sure would stop and grab it.

Carol finished painting the bookcase this weekend. Of course, I supervised and I think she did a fine job. For someone with two hands rather than four paws, she handles a brush quite well. Hopefully, she'll recover by tomorrow. I'll give an extra slurp tonight. Maddie

2-year anniversary

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

What was I doing 2-years ago today? I was feeding my generator gas, a routine I would have to follow for 10 1/2 days.

On 10/24/2005 Hurricane Wilma blew threw Palm Beach County. Even though I had ridden out Hurricanes Francis and Jeanne, Wilma was much more ferocious. Several urban hurricane myths got debunked that day. 1) Although Wilma came over Florida from the Gulf of Mexico, traveling west to east, it actually gained more strength over land rather than lose it. 2) The back side of the hurricane was much worse than the front side. I can still hear the wind howling.

When it was all over, I went outside with Maddie and got to work clearing out the debris. For the next few days I spent hours in gas lines as no one warned me how much gas a generator used. It was my first time using a generator. I was lucky enough to print out my book Shadow Lines and then spent many nervous hours traveling on roads with no lights to get to a post office running on a generator. I drovedrive miles to get to a grocery store that had a generator. It wasn't until this summer that the last blue-tarped roof disappeared in my area.

So here's hoping to a hurricane-free season. Wilma was enough to last me a lifetime of trials and tribulations. Carol

Weekend Warrior

Monday, October 22, 2007

Why is it that a 2-day weekend beckons with endless possibilities on Friday? Then on Sunday night you're faced with exhaustion and tired muscles?

With the proposal done, I once more tackled the family room make-over, more precisely the 16' long built-in bookcase/cabinet with all sorts of nooks and crannies. Saturday I sanded and cleaned the sucker. Then Sunday I applied the primer coat. Oh my. I divided it into 4 sections and took frequent breaks, but each section took about an hour. One not only has to paint the top of the shelf but underneath it as well. But at the conclusion of the day, aching feet notwithstanding, I had finished it.

I'd conferred with several people, and all were unanimous that I should just skip painting the interior of the cabinet portion. But I sat on the sofa Sunday night with a heating pad wrapped around my feet and told myself that I needed to gut it up. The project would just look too incomplete if I didn't paint the interior of the cabinets.

So tonight when I got home, I cleared out the cabinets. If all goes well, I'll sand and clean that section tomorrow night and then prime on Wednesday. Then the big push over next weekend will be to paint.

My feet groan at the thought. I promised them another heating pad wrap. :) Carol

Transformers/The Hunt of Researching

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

I was a bad girl tonight. I'd planned on sanding the bookcase so I can at least prime it this weekend [it covers an entire wall so I'm not even remotely going to think I can prime and paint in one weekend]. However, when I arrived home, my Nextflix envelope was in the mailbox with the movie Transformers. I'd missed it at the theatre this summer so I settled on the couch and watched it. Enjoyed it although I couldn't tell which robot was which in the fight scenes.

On the legal front, I had a good day. In this age of the Internet, I usually ask a whole series of questions about onlinw use when deposing a claimant [do you have a website, trade on ebay, etc]. In a case I had mediation in today, I'd startled a young woman during her deposition by asking if she had a myspace page...It turned out she did and what was on that page contrasted sharply with the image she was trying to portray. Her page proved very useful during the mediation.

What I love most about my job is the hunt, and when I can catch people lying or mispresenting things...sweet! I visited another blog where they were talking about research, and research is one of those links between the night and day job for me. Whether reserching Merlin or Googling a claimant's name and finding a board where he's spilled the beans about his life, I never grow tired of the search. :) Carol

The dog story part II

I woke up this morning to the news that the pet adoption agency entangled with that Ellen star has received death threats....that's ridiculous. I do fully understand and support a pet agency that is concerned about the well-being of the animals and screen families who want to adopt. Clearly, there are folks who shouldn't have a dog, etc. And that Ellen person did the usual star thing thinking she was above rules and regulations. The only thing I questioned in the whole mess was sending the police to grab the dog from the two little girls when the agency could have used the opportunity to interview the family. What I don't know/haven't heard is whether the girl's family refused to let the agency near the which case then resorting to the police may have been the only option. Then it's shame on the parents for putting their kids through the experience.

But death threats against the agency's staff?!? Get a life. I hope the police/district attorney investigate that Ellen's publicist. I heard the tape recording of her threats, and it sure sounded criminally actionable.

And I hope when I get home tonight the brouhaha is over and that Ellen person no longer has her face all over the news. I am very tired of these spoiled Hollywood brats/egos occupying the news. There are real people with real problems who deserve their stories to be heard. Carol

This Week's Bad Moves

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Okay, this Ellen Degeneres vs. pet adoption agency controvery that erupted today. While I"m sure there's a bunch of he said/she said going on, the bottom-line is the agency went and took the dog from two young girls. Come off it, folks. You could have sent that very same representative to interview the family to whom Ellen gave the dog and made sure it was a good home. The gestapo tactics were way over the top. Nice going on showing kids on how to act as adults...not!!!! Those who run the agency need to get a life. What a horrible move.

Now, more locally. The attorney rip-off bill of the year: the court appointed guardian for the Ana Nicole Smith baby. $200,000. for a few weeks work? I have several friends who act as court-appointed guardian/attorney ad litem for children. They work for very little, volunteer a lot of time and are outstanding attorneys with hearts of gold. They could run legal circles around this guy any day. Another costly, bad mistake by the now defunct judge. No wonder people don't like and don't trust attorneys. There should have been a flat fee, not to exceed $200/hr, with a cap on the amount of hours. Anything higher than that the attorney should have been made to come back to court and account for any excess before it was expended. To make a carte blanche appointment and then for the firm to take advantage...sigh.


Samantha's back

Monday, October 15, 2007

Thank God, Samantha's back on Dancing with the Stars. Drew Lacey was boring to the extreme. I never appreciated Samantha's back stage talks with the dancers until she was on maternity leave. The ladies are still rocking; I still don't have a favorite. I'll be happy with whoever wins.

Yes, I know I've been quiet, but I wrapped up a proposal this past Friday that I sent to my agent. Then I gave a workshop on 1st point of view for my chapter Florida Romance Writers on Saturday. On Sunday I hit th gardening and tried to beat back the jungle. So I'm in a state of collapse, trying to gear up for finishing up the family room makeover. :) Carol

Dancing with the Stars

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Most of the guys have to go. Finally, this year the female stars far exceed the men except for one...Helio. Hopefully tonight will see Wayne exit stage left for good and then in subsequent weeks, Mark, Cameron and then Floyd. I haven't settled yet on who I want to win overall, but the women are fantastic this year. While I won't be heartbroken if Helio ends up taking the trophy because his moves are so clean, I would love to see a woman taking the grand prize.
:) Carol


Monday, October 8, 2007

I love football. Love it. I can spend hours watching the games. Happiness is when the preliminary season begins in August. Since it is a contact sport, I know there are going to be injuries, but one always hopes for the best.

However, when a player seriously injures another and then stands over the prone body of the injured player and taunts him, I draw a line. What Houston defensive tackle Travis Johnson did Sunday was reprehensible. To stand over Trent Green, who was unconscious from a grade III concussion, and verbally abuse the quaterback was obscene. A 1 5-yard penalty wasn't enough. One could argue that Johnson didn't know how injured the quarterback, to which I would reply, "Exactly. He didn't know so the humane and moral reaction should have been to be concerned. To join in the prayer for the injured player. Instead, the defensive tackle was still ranting and raving in the locker room because he had been penalized. He should get more than 15 yards for his continuing conduct; he should be slapped with a hefty fine.

Granted, I'm a Dolphin fan, but I would be outraged if a Dolphin did it to a downed Houston player. Such conduct by any player should not be condoned. This is a tough enough game; it doesn't need to lower itself to brutality. Carol

French Quarter II

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Okay, here's the next set of photos of the French Quarter. I hope you enjoy! :) Carol

Doesn't it Figure/French Quarter photos

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

In the 'Doesn't it figure' column: my friends are always after me to eat more vegetables. I have always disliked to hated them; my poor Mom could only get corn and tomatos down me [and please, no debates on what is/isn't a vegatable. Let me live in ignorance.] Later in life I've added mushrooms. Otherwise, bleh~~~~.

But over the Labor Day weekend in NO, I thought I would tackle some eating habits and bought a bag of lettuce upon my return. This week I've been having a salad with every meal. Well...the bag I bought was the same blend that Dole recalled. Fortunately, my bag didn't have the batch number, but since it was off by only one day and e-coli was found in a random sample, I pitched the bag anyway. I shall remain content with my non-vegetable lifestyle.

Now on to the photos of the French Quarter. I meant to start last night, but the day job got in the way. I love the FQ and I hope you enjoy the photos. :) Carol

Most photographed building.

Hard to see but that's a real cat sitting on the balcony behind the metal one.

Carriage Ride

Friday, September 14, 2007

Sunday night those attendees staying over went on a carriage ride. It was supposed to be a 'ghost' ride, but our particular driver focused mainly on history rather than ghost stories. So here are a few pictures of NO by night. Next week I'll be posting loads of pictures of the entrancing French Quarters. :) Carol

Slush Pile Players

Thursday, September 13, 2007

An extravaganza dinner and production awaited the conference attendees on Saturday night. The conference folks spearheaded by Heather Graham and Connie Perry went all out. I loved the centerpieces and the overall decor. Many of those in the play suffered panic attacks that they would forget their lines, but once the curtains went up, the Slush Pile players pulled off a great musical. I'm proud to say that the Florida Romance Writers rose to the occasion and wore costumes of every description. Next up, the Sunday night carriage ride. :) Carol

The stage

The centerpiece on my table

L to R: my friend Geri and myself

Standing, authors Kathy Pickering and Mary Stella

Authors Lyn Armstrong and Aleka Nakis

Florida Romance Writers

Me and Heather Graham


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

A great breakfast with a talk kicked off the 'official' conference on Saturday. Author F. Paul Wilson [The F. Paul Wilson Homepage]proved to be an entertaining speaker, and bookseller Molly Bolden [Bent Pages Bookstore & Coffeeshop, Houma, LA] was a hoot and a half.

Panel discussions filled the day. I moderated one with several editors and participated on another about the writing life. During the afternoon the New Orleans Romance Writers Chapter honored Heather. Although the booksigning happened on Sunday, I'm including a special shot with this group as my next post will feature Heather and the Slush Pile players.
:) Carol

The group lunches at Orleans Cafe. On the L: Diane Hernandez and Traci Hall; on the R: Kathy Pickering

Mary Stella [ Mary Stella Romance Author] autographs the chest of an enthusiastic fan!

Heather is honored by the New Orleans Romance Writers Chapter.

From L to R: Robert Levinson [], Harley Jane Kozak [], F. Paul Wilson and Mary Stella.

The panel I moderated [photo courtesy of Traci Hall!].

Cat's Meow, NO

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The fun had only just begun for the attendees at the Heather Graham's Writers for NO. After the Welcome party, we all headed to Bourbon Street for another party sponsored by Helen Rosburg of Medallion Press.

We took over the balcony level of the Cat's Meow, a karoake bar.
Welcome to the World Famous Cats Meow - French Quarter New Orleans

Great food and drinks [gotta watch those Jell-o shots!!!]. The balcony overlooks the stage where the brave perform. You can also wander outside to watch all the action on Bourbon. The pedestrian traffic never ceased the whole night. I'm proud to say the best karoake performances that night came from our group [don't look at me...I cannot carry a tune; even my shower tells me to shut up ]. To no one's surprise, not only is Heather a NY Times Bestselling Author who has a heart of gold, she also acts, writes music AND sings. And the talent extends to her children as well who pitched in throughout the conference.

So a big thank you to Helen Rosburg for a fabulous time as you'll be able to see from the sampling of photos below. Next up wiill be photos from the conference itself. :) Carol

Why I'm eating PB&J sandwiches for the rest of my life

Monday, September 10, 2007

After the Welcome Party, my friend Geri and I wandered along Royal Street. First we stopped in the Praline [pronounced praw-leen] Company's store. Naturally, we had to sample several brands of pralines. On Monday we would return to this store to load up on goodies to send home.
New Orleans Famous Pralines

Fortified, we continued along and came across a Dixieland band performing on...the steps of the Louisiana Supreme Court. What a perfect moment for our first night in NO! Here's a link to a site explaining the history of Dixieland Jazz: HyperMusic -- History of Jazz: Dixieland

After such energizing music, we wandered into a number of stores. In the Gallery of Lights, a painting captured my soul. I couldn't leave it; the painting by artist Roberta Wesley resonated deep inside me. So I did something I never expected to do: bought the painting. The Gallery of Lights features luminous artwork. The artists paint in such a manner that the work changes with the light. Marvelous, simply marvelous. Consequently, the first thing I did when I arrived home was to go out and buy a fresh loaf of bread. I've been having PB&J sandwiches every day and will continue to do so for many months, but that painting is so worth cutting corners wherever I can. To be able to sit and find calm at the end of each day...
Gallery of Light

Next my friend and I cut down a street and found the famous Pat O'Brien's tavern. Of course, we had to go in and have a Hurricane. As a Floridian, I appreciate having the upper hand over a Hurricane. Please note that I only had one.

Tomorrow night I'll take up at the party at the Cat's Meow.

:) Carol

The crowd formed a line and followed the band performer around in a circle.

Heather Graham's Conference: The Welcome Party

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Heather Graham's Writers' Conference for New Orleans began with a bang on Friday, August 31 at the gorgeous Hotel Monteleone. [Hotel Monteleone]

Authors Erin McCarthy and Kathy Love graciously sponsored the Welcome Party. [Erin McCarthy Read Kathy Love - Romance Author]

Great food and a live performance by the band The Impalers were the highlights. [The Impalers - Vampire Band]

As the following photos show, members of the Florida Romance Writers know how to party!

Author Mary Stella

Our wonderful prez, author Traci Hall

Authors Traci Hall, Aleka Nakis and Kathy Pickering []

Authors Traci Hall, Aleka Nakis [], and Kathy Pickering

And me being serenaded by the Impalers' lead singer. :) Carol

For those in NO who didn't make it

Thursday, September 6, 2007

I wanted to post this picture separately. These houses line up against a flood wall that broke. The people in these homes didn't make it. Since I took this photo as the bus drove past, I don't think you can tell, but the houses were pushed off their foundations by the force of water. So my prayers go out to all who didn't make it and to those who have stayed in NO and are part of the resurrection. Carol

New Orleans

I had a fabulous time at Heather Graham's Writers for New Orleans Conference this past weekend. Over time I'll share the fun pictures, but for now I'm showing the reason why we were there: the city's resurrection. I took the Katrina tour and the following photos are only representative of the total destruction that still exists. As you'll see, the French Quarters is fully functional and a roaring good time. However, NO needs your tourism and convention dollars; NO needs your donations to charitable organizations such as Habitat for Humanity. Please remember NO and its residents in your thoughts and prayers. They have a long road to recovery. Carol

Yes, hole in the roof was made by the family escaping from the flood waters.

Line across the house marks the flood level.

Businesses wiped out.

People living in trailers as they try to rebuild their homes.

Or live in their damaged homes as they begin anew.