Showing posts from 2012

Nailed It

What the baclava was supposed to look like:

Here's what they actually look like:


Yes, Officer. There's a Rational Explanation for All That Blood...

Sooo, this week I had considerable insight into what it's like to try to cover one's tracks after a murder.  Put down the phone.  You don't have to call the police.  It's not like that...though it would have been entertaining to try to explain had an officer walked in.

My four-year-old thought his clownfish were super, super hungry, so he dumped about a month's worth of fish food into their tank.  I got my husband out of bed and we scrambled to remove the food from the tank as we listened to a chorus of, "I'm reawy, reawy sowwy, Mommy."

An hour into the clean up and water change, I leaned down to wipe up some water that had dripped onto the floor.  To my horror, I saw copious quantities of blood on the wall.  Apparently I missed a couple (a lot) of streaks when I cleaned up the carnage the week before.

In my defense, it went down early in the morning.  I can't be held accountable for a cleanup that happened before my morning coffee.
My dog wakes u…

In a Pickle

I find myself in an interesting pickle.  There have been several changes to the way I can do my job this year.  Not good.  Suffice it to say it's like telling a mechanic to change out an engine with only the tools he can fit on a tool belt.  I'm a perfectionist, so I find my future uncertain at this point. 

I will be blogging and writing more regularly as soon as my future is a little more clear.  Thanks for hanging in there.

Things I Learned During My Blog Break

First, I should apologize for my lengthy absence.  I've learned many things while I took an unintentional blog break.

When one takes a kid fishing, one doesn't really get to fish.Montana is really, really big.Long breaks from one's project sharpens one's ability to spot one's own stupidity.A censor button needs to be installed in my brain.  Or my mouth.I know I've become addicted to The Hunger Games when I started looking for tracker jackers in my garden.When it snows on frickin' MAY 26TH, one should not panic and replace all the plants in one's garden, as it leaves one with a shit-ton of plants when they all bounce back.Never leave third graders alone in a room full of expensive recording microphones.Kari Ann Peniche is a crazy maker of the first order.The squeaky wheel doesn't always get the grease.  Sometimes it gets a big red bullseye. My three-year-old son learned many things, as well, but most importantly to never, ever drop the toilet seat.

I …

A Week in Montana

My understanding is this has gone viral, and I can see why.  This sums up succinctly why I believe I could never permanently call any other place home.

A Week In Montana from Preston Kanak on Vimeo.

Beware the Staff of the Ninja Cow

They come out of nowhere in the middle of the night: pitch black Angus cows.  My friend Ian calls them ninja cows, as driving at night is pretty scary when these masters of camouflage creep out of their pastures and onto the road.  My ego took a serious blow when one of these ninja masters hit me in broad daylight.  With a pole.
My parents raise Herefords, who are pretty gentle in compared to Angus, but any cow can be dangerous if a person's being stupid.  My dad has a picture of my brother riding a Hereford bull at age three.  Well, not so much riding as sitting on it while it ate hay.
The selling price is a little higher for what we call black baldies, which are a cross between a Hereford and a Black Angus, so Dad runs a few Angus bulls, usually shooting for a herd of calves that are about half pure-bred Hereford and half black baldies.

Just after Christmas, I was helping my dad do Bangs vaccinations, which involves crimping medicine into a heifer's ear with a nasty looking, g…

Review: Pilgrims of the Sky, by Natania Barron

After Maddie's fiancĂ©, Alvin, disappeared, she tries to disentangle herself from Alvin's family and makes the heart-breaking decision to move away from his mother and his endearingly broken-minded brother.  A box of books, a guilt trip, and an unwilling favor later, she's sharing bodies with Matilda in the Second world.


Pilgrims of the Sky had many strengths.  My favorite part of the book is the vivid way Barron paints the other worlds.  I applaud Barron's vision, especially considering the fact that I have the artistic skills of a third grader and the descriptive vocabulary to match.  She manages to make the setting interesting without spending too much time on description.

My favorite character was Randy, a special man that reminded me of several of my students in a very charming way.  The cast of characters was quite large, and the difficulty of developing them was apparent.  I saw why the cast had to be so large, but it did make keeping names straight rather di…

I Didn't Forget About You

Ladies and Gents,

I apologize for my lack of activity on my site.  I've been working on two tricky posts, posts that I'm taking time to make sure I do right. 

The first is an explanation of how to get agriculture right in fiction.  When my friend Michael Spence mention he didn't realize that grazing wasn't referring to a near miss by a bullet, I realized I needed to include pictures.  The article is ready to go, I'm just waiting for some pictures to be sent to me by a relative.

The second is a review of the book Pilgrims of the Sky.  I allowed the holiday insanity derail my reviewing schedule, so the review will be posted as soon as possible.

Thanks for your patience, and happy reading!