Love, Laughter, and Life

Adventures With a Book Lover

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Thank you, Vivian Kirkfield, for bringing this book to my attention. Perfect timing!

Parents, grandparents, families, this book is a free e-book for young readers. Be a Coronavirus Fighter touches on the most basic things we need to know about fighting the virus and staying healthy. Thank you, Helen Wu and Songju Ma Daemicke!

Be a Coronavirus Fighter!

Read Vivian’s interview with Helen Wu and Songju Ma Daemicke:

via Helen Wu and Songju Ma Daemicke: Will Write for Cookies and COVID-19 

Read to the bottom of the post to find the link for the book as well as links to learn more about the author and illustrator.

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Book Report: Jessica Tandy, The Girl Who Loved Candy by Susan Dils


Jessica Tandy, The Girl Who Loved Candy

Written by Susan Dils

Illustrated by Juan Diaz

Mascot Books, 2020


What happens when Mom finally gives up on the whining and lets her daughter eat all the candy she wants?

Yikes! Most can (correctly) predict the consequences of this sweet-tooth folly. Quick, make a list of what you think happens. I bet you’ve guessed at least one disastrous consequence!

Thank you, Mascot Books, for sending a review copy of Jessica Tandy, The Girl Who Loved Candy.


Why I Liked This Book:

~ Like Jessica, I love candy (though I rarely eat it due to the consequences of too much sugar)

~ Jessica, free to eat all the candy she wants, gorges herself, and then suffers overwhelming health issues

~ This book really lets readers know what will happen if too much sugar is in your diet (cavities, rotten teeth, poor health, grumpy attitude, sleepiness, general malaise)

~ The real consequences of eating straight sugar, even with brushing, are mouth and health issues; I’m glad this is included in the book

~ The book shares the path back to good health (and renewed friendships)

~ Love the importance of eating healthy, which was shared in ways I thought not too pushy

~ Great illustrations

~ I did want to shake the mom a bit (really? Jessica could eat ALL the candy she wanted??? But then, where would the story be?)

~ Fun and engaging, told in rhyme


Amazon Blurb:

Oh, how delicious it would certainly be
If we could all eat what we wanted freely!
Join Jessica Tandy in this humorous tale as she learns a lesson the hard way, finding out that poor eating habits can lead to a lot more than just cavities.


I’m in Love with My New Portable Standing Desk!


Everyone who is anyone has read about the dangers of sitting long hours. Not that a numb backside, crinkled shoulders, and achy knees will kill you, but sitting and being sedentary just might steal your health and shorten the days you expect to be around to do anything.

As a writer, well, sitting at a computer desk, coffee table, work table, research desk, or any other writerly space is sort of a job requirement.

The challenge is how to stand and write but also be able to access (ergonomically) the keyboard or laptop, mouse, and assorted resources and supplies.

Living in an RV adds additional space challenges. Where would I store a standing desk? How could I use the tiny dining table if a portable standing desk were in place? What about the bump between the slide and the RV floor? Do I need to stand on the hump to work at a standing desk?

After literally spending years contemplating, researching, and giving up the idea of a table top desk, I finally threw up my hands after a particularly long (sitting) writing day. I did a quick Amazon search, found the perfect portable standing desk, checked for size for my 17″ laptop, and ordered it. All within 5 minutes.

I should have done that ages ago!


This wonderful office accessory arrived a few days after placing my order. It took me a few minutes to figure out the legs, but after that, I realized what a treat it will be to use my new standing desk.

My 17″ laptop fits securely on top of the adjustable angle table, held in place by a shelf. My mouse and pad rest to the right of my laptop and are also held in place by a softened shelf. If you are looking for one for yourself, this is definitely for a right-handed person. Look to see if a left-handed version is available. Coloring is pretty nondescript, but I’m not in it for looks. Purpose is my main goal. It is neutral in color and is sturdy enough that I don’t worry for the safety of my laptop. It does wiggle as I type, but not the kind of wiggle that tells me it’s going to crash down. I love being able to angle the top of the tray, and my wrists appreciate the easy angle when working.

Storage is not an issue either. This tray folds flat. The two shelves that hold up the computer and mouse are a bit raised on one side, while the folded legs are raised on the back. But I found a perfect spot to rest my new work buddy.


I now have the option to stand and work or sit and work. Hurray!

What took me so long???


Details of my portable standing desk: [Large Size] Neetto TB101L Adjustable Laptop Bed Table, Portable Standing Desk, Foldable Sofa Breakfast Tray, Notebook Stand Reading Holder for Couch [Personal Computers]

You’re welcome.

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$125 Bucks Later …

Monet in one of her favorite napping spots. In her favorite position.

By Angie Quantrell @AngieQuantrell

The first hint that something was wrong was the sound of the cat door furiously flapping.

The next hint was the flash of gray darting across the floor to the cat box. Monet had the kitty runs. Eww.

I mean the nasty smelly potty stops. While I’ve been there myself (though I don’t use the cat litter box nor do I go through the cat door), I’ve never seen a cat make a mad dash to the toilet!

Poor baby!

The dash and go lasted all evening and we were getting concerned. But since she continued to eat, drink, and play with her toys like a wild thing, we figured it would pass.

But this morning there was blood.

That definitely meant a trip to the vet. There was initial interest in the cat carrier by both girls, but the second I grabbed Monet to put her in, Mabel dashed off for hiding, afraid she would be next.

$125 bucks later, Monet was home. Colitis. Who knew cats could have that?

Cats eat all sorts of things. Especially Monet. She’s the wild girl and she very aggressively hunts, consumes, and shares her prizes. According to the vet, this is common.

No fever, healthy teeth, eating and drinking, playing, good fur, no temp = colitis and maybe a some worms (from eating before mentioned outdoor treats).

“Are you able to give her pills?” he asked.

“My guess is no, though we’ve never had to give them to her before,” I said. “Monet is our more intensive cat and pulls no punches when she plays. I’m guessing I would earn a bite or scratches from any attempts.”

This idea was confirmed when the vet came back with Monet after a little visit to the back room. “I did manage to give her a pill, but I had a technician and an assistant helping me. I gave her a shot. It’s not my first choice, but to prevent bites and scratches, it will be best for her.” (And me!)

As I thought.

How Monet loves to sleep.

So, guess what $125 buys? A vet inspection. A very strong antibiotic injection. One pill. Worming medication.

And a very happy-to-be-home cat who has already brought me a moth.