Angela Rae Harris http://angelaraeharris.com Stories of hope ~ Creating dreams Fri, 14 Feb 2014 12:00:05 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.1 COVER REVEAL! Not Your Average Happy Ending by Chantele Sedgwick http://angelaraeharris.com/cover-reveal-not-your-average-happy-ending-by-chantele-sedgwick/ http://angelaraeharris.com/cover-reveal-not-your-average-happy-ending-by-chantele-sedgwick/#comments Fri, 14 Feb 2014 12:00:05 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=325 Cover Reveal! I cannot wait to read this book!

NOT YOUR AVERAGE HAPPY ENDING

YA Contemporary Fantasy
Release Date: March 3, 2014
Crescent Moon Press
Blurb:
When Ash Summerland left the Academy of Magical Beings, he was sure he’d put his troubles behind him. But when his girlfriend, Kendall, is almost killed by an old enemy over something he knows little about, Ash is forced to confront the demons of his past if he wants to save his and Kendall’s future.

With his fairy magic fading and his djinn magic more powerful than ever, Ash isn’t sure he can stop the evil from closing in around him. Although Kendall is the only thing keeping him from going over the edge, if he can’t learn to balance out his magic and find a way to defeat his enemies once and for all, both his world, and the girl he loves will be lost forever.

 

And now what we have been waiting for:

NotYourAverageHappyEnding_ChantelSedgwick_200x300[1]

I’m counting down to March 3rd how about you? Seriously, if you haven’t read Not Your Average Fairy Tale (the first book) you are missing out on a fun, sweet, amazing series! I recommend it to everyone!

 

ChanteleSedgwickpictureAuthor Bio:

Chantele Sedgwick grew up playing the harp and singing. Little did anyone know, she always had stories floating around in her head. After she had her second baby, she finally realized she should probably write them down. Pursuing publication was something she only dreamed about, but now her dream is coming true.

The discovery of a first love, first kisses, and the many emotions teens go through, pushed Chantele to find her niche in writing teen fiction. Some of her stories share a few of her own experiences, but most of them are just fantasies she wished happened to her as a teen. She’s a sucker for a great love story and always enjoys a happy ending. She tends to have a thing for the “bad boys” in books, unless they’re total jerks. Then she’ll root for the good guy.

When she’s not writing, Chantele can be found spending time with her husband and four beautiful kids, or driving her sisters crazy with random story ideas.

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Goodreads

 

Check out book one and read it before Not Your Average Happy Ending comes out!

NotYourAverageFairyTaleCover

Blurb:

Ash Summerland has it all-good looks, popularity, and the best grades at The Academy of Magical Beings. Ready to complete his last assignment in order to graduate, Ash is confident he will get the apprenticeship he wants. but when he opens the letter from the Council, he is shocked to discover he has been assigned to apprentice Lady Shenelle, Keeper of Happy Endings- aka the head fairy godmother. Ash is forced to grant three wishes to a troubled human girl named Kendall, and ultimately give her a “happy ever after.” But Kendall turns out to be more than he bargained for. Still grieving over her father’s death, she doesn’t want anything to do with Ash. And worst of all, she doesn’t believe in happy endings.

Buy it here:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Not-Your-Average-Fairytale-ebook/dp/B008RANSN6/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1378783097&sr=1-1&keywords=not+your+average+fairy+tale

Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/not-your-average-fairy-tale-chantele-sedgwick/1112170164?ean=9781937254650

Don’t forget, one the best things you can do for an indie author is to leave a little review on the site where you purchased their book!

See you next time!

-Angela

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Six Doctors in Five Days = One crazy week http://angelaraeharris.com/six-doctors-in-five-days-one-crazy-week/ http://angelaraeharris.com/six-doctors-in-five-days-one-crazy-week/#comments Mon, 03 Feb 2014 18:03:22 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=321 doctor_is_in

Day One – My three-year-old son Hunter had been up all night complaining of stomach pain. About ever five minutes he would screem “ouch, ouch, ouch”.  Not knowing what was going on, and hating that he didn’t seem to be getting any better, I took him into Urgent Care. I love the doctors at the clinic we go! The doctor looked him over and he had a blood draw. We couldn’t get a urine sample from him so we left the clinic for lunch hoping that the little man would go. After dropping off my oldest with her father, I took Hunter back to the clinic. He still had a clean diaper. The next step was an x-ray and ultra sound. The ultra sound should that his bladder was completely full. To give him some relief they did a catheter and emptied his bladder. But he was still having the screaming pain. The doctor came in and talked to me and we decided to do an emema. (I know, poor little guy!) It didn’t work. We went home hoping that he would have a diaper and he would feel better.

Day Two – After another bad night of pain, we went back to the doctor we saw the day before to let her know nothing had happened. She suggested we go to the ER. We went to Ogden Regional Hospital and checked in. First thing the doctor tells us is that Hunter doesn’t seem to have any blockage like we had thought yesterday. They pulled in the ultra sound equipment and his bladder was again very full. They did another catheter to empty him. Then Hunter had another x-ray to check his bowels. Nothing there that was concerning. After several hours of waiting while the doctor called several other doctors for second opinions, we were sent home with a referral to Primary Children’s Hospital.  We weren’t coming home alone though. It was hard to get into Primary Children’s and they didn’t want Hunter to be uncomfortable with a full bladder, so they put in a catheter that would stay in until our appointment with the specialist.

Day Three – Urology at Primary Children’s wanted an ultra sound before Hunter’s appointment. We went to Davis Hospital and they sent the images off to Primary Children’s. Needless to say this was our slow day.

Day Four- Urology at Primary Children’s was wonderful. Before the appointment we were thinking, “Well, at least he’ll get his catheter out.” My husband and I were both trying to prepare for the worst of news. (Really, how do you prepare for that though?) His doctor was great. He took us in and showed us the ultra sounds explaining that there are no tumors or blocking of Hunter’s urinary track. They took out his catheter and told us that the bladder cannot rupture. We were told to go home and he will pee eventually. After all the appointments this week turns out Hunter was just holding everything in.

Day Five - My five-year-old Summer wakes up crying. She says her ear hurts. We go to her pediatrician were we are told she indeed has an ear infection. With some medication and rest she should be on the mend. Now it is time for my annual physical that I have had scheduled for weeks. Most everything with me is normal. I do have a scheduled ultra sound for next week to look at an odd bump in my back and also to look at my thyroid which is a bit swollen.

And that was our week of doctor appointments. I really hope we aren’t starting a trend for 2014. I am so thankful to have such wonderful doctors though!

I hope you are all well!

See you next time,

Angela

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Where does the time go? http://angelaraeharris.com/where-does-the-time-go/ http://angelaraeharris.com/where-does-the-time-go/#respond Wed, 15 Jan 2014 19:25:36 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=311 SumnmammaThis morning my three year old, Hunter, climbed into bed with me after my husband left for work. As we laid there watching Mickey Mouse Clubhouse his tiny fingers wrapped around two of my fingers. Then my five year old, Summer, came skipping through the room into our bathroom and brushed her hair and her teeth then announced that she was ready for preschool.

I know kids grow up fast! Soon my baby boy  will not want to cuddle or hug me. Soon my little girl will not be so happy to get out of bed and go to school. I hugged my son and smiled at my little girl. I knew I had to take in this moment.

 

huntslid It is funny how you can go from one extreme to another so fast. One minute I’m thinking, “I hope my kids don’t grow up so fast.” The next I’m thinking, “Potty training is so hard, can’t we fast forward a couple months.”

Yes, potty training. My daughter didn’t prepare me properly for potty training my son. Summer was too easy. It was like one day, just before she turned three, she wanted to stop wearing diapers and was potty trained in one day. She has only had one accident at night and that was just after she started wearing real underwear to bed. Hunter on the other hand is showing interest, enough that I’ve had him in underwear during the day, but hasn’t really taken it seriously. This is very much his personality though.

So, here’s to the days I’ll miss most. Don’t grow up too fast!

 

See you next time,

Angela

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Goals for the New Year http://angelaraeharris.com/goals-for-the-new-year/ http://angelaraeharris.com/goals-for-the-new-year/#comments Mon, 30 Dec 2013 22:16:05 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=307 Hello there,

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season!

I’m trying to get back into my routine just in time for the new year to start. I’ve been thinking about all the things I want to do in 2014. I thought I’d write down my to do list :)

1. Blog More – twice a week would be a good start. It might be about random thoughts – just warning you :)

2. Move – we want to move out the country where there are big yards and smaller schools.

3. Release More Books – With my debut book out, it is time to move on to the next book in The Time series.

4. Self Publish – I want to try my hand at self publishing. I already have the book in mind. A contemporary romance based on a dear friends war on cancer. I want to contribute 50% of profits to a college savings account for her 4 year old daughter, Ellie.

5. Don’t stress it – Not stressing the small stuff and try my hardest not to overwhelm myself :)

There you have it. My five goals for the year.

What are your goals for 2014?

See you next time,

Angela

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Languages of Tolkien’s Middle Earth – Guest Post by Lindsay Flanagan http://angelaraeharris.com/languages-of-tolkiens-middle-earth-guest-post-by-lindsay-flanagan/ http://angelaraeharris.com/languages-of-tolkiens-middle-earth-guest-post-by-lindsay-flanagan/#respond Thu, 05 Dec 2013 18:25:29 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=303

Abstract from J.R.R. Tolkien the Linguist: How Language Created Middle-earth

Lindsay Flanagan

Before I delve into Tolkien, I must state that I am a young adult fantasy writer, and it is because of Tolkien—and frankly, only Tolkien—that I am so interested in writing fantasy. I have certainly been inspired by other fantasy authors in the young and new adult veins over the years, but my love of fantasy began with Tolkien.

With the release of the second installment of The Hobbit due out in December, I felt it proper to pay tribute to the man who created Middle-earth. The original version of this essay is a lengthy research paper, written for a graduate English Grammar class. Contained below is a condensed version of that paper.

J.R.R. Tolkien is perhaps best known for his masterpiece The Lord of the Rings, which was the twentieth century’s second most read book, second only to the Bible. An epic film trilogy based on Tolkien’s books was produced and directed this past decade by Peter Jackson, and has garnered a whole new generation of fans. A new film trilogy based on Tolkien’s first book, The Hobbit, is making waves this decade in the film world. However, to the casual film viewer or reader of the books, it may not be known that Tolkien’s great love was linguistics. This passion for language is what inspired Tolkien to create Middle-earth; because before Middle-earth existed, the languages Tolkien created did. It would be simple to say that Tolkien was an Oxford professor of Anglo-Saxon, Middle English, and the history of the English language (Shippey 6); that he wrote a language, created a people to speak it, created a mythological story for those people, and wrote The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings along with it. Many years later, his son Christopher Tolkien edited and published the mythology that his father had created so many years earlier as the book The Silmarillion. Fortunately for lovers of language and literature, it is not that simple. Linguistic and literary genius does not come that easy. For Tolkien, it was a lifelong ambition, even a borderline obsession. Tolkien himself stated that “the trilogy is an exercise in linguistic aesthetic” (Ugolnik 17) and that “the invention of the languages is the foundation” (qtd by Shippey 25). Of course, language wasn’t the only reason for Middle-earth. He was also a poet and a storyteller, even if many of the poems and stories were an outlet for the invented languages.

There have been critics who have questioned why The Lord of the Rings is often referred to as literary genius; Edmund Wilson reviewed it and stated that it was “poor in form and content… [Tolkien] was basically concerned with language, anyway” (Ugolnik 17). And so he was. Most critics have brushed off, scoffed at, or adamantly refuted Wilson’s statement, anyway. Tolkien was able to write words into story because he understood them. Raynor Unwin, son of Tolkien’s publisher, said, “Tolkien’s fantasy is unique, insofar that it had a base, which was linguistic. It is solid stuff, which is nothing you can question, because he knew his stuff” (“J.R.R. Tolkien: Origins”). Tolkien’s passion and interest in language is shown through his literature, as a “vast and essential component of human existence, with all its poetic, philosophical, and social connotations” (Smith 5). As Anthony Ugolnik states, “Tolkien created a world to act as a stage for a language…[t]he languages of Middle Earth are the life’s blood of the trilogy” (18) and through that love of language, he was able to sew together language and literature; without Tolkien’s linguistic genius, the literary world may have never had The Lord of the Rings (or

LOTR). Ruth S. Noel, who compiled The Languages of Tolkien’s Middle-earth, states that “[t]he story of the evolution of the languages of Middle-earth is the story of the compelling hobby of a linguistic genius. The story of the evolution of the languages in Middle-earth is a complex tribute to Tolkien’s combined talents as linguist and storyteller” (6). J.R.R. Tolkien’s linguistic background and his invented languages, are the inspiration for and the foundation of Middle-earth’s very existence; they are the keystone of the people, their culture, and their stories.

Tolkien’s stories come from two from two different paths, although those paths intertwined and finally met in the publication of LOTR.  But what of The Hobbit? Published in 1937, the charming children’s story was a huge success and a tribute of Tolkien’s storytelling talent. Tolkien had been writing and telling stories for and to his children all of their lives. He wrote “Father Christmas” letters each year, short tales that told of Father Christmas’s adventures in the North Pole, with a cast of characters such as the Polar Bear, the Snow Man, snow-elves, gnomes, and goblins. It is shown through this type of writing that Tolkien was influenced by fairy stories, and it was in fairy stories that Tolkien discovered the “potency of words.” Other stories that he told have characters with familiar names, such as Tom Bombadil and Gaffer Gamgee. The Hobbit, when he first began writing it, was “merely another story for amusement,” a place for Bilbo Baggins and his adventures. However, “elements of [the] mythology began to creep in…the dwarves (spelt in that fashion) had played a part…and when in the first chapter…the wizard mentioned ‘the Necromancer’ there was a reference to the legend of Beren and Luthien. Soon it was apparent that the journey of Bilbo Baggins and his companions lay across a corner of that Middle-earth” (Carpenter 182). Beren and Luthien, for newcomers to Tolkien, is the story of an elf-maiden and a mortal man, who fall in love in one of the tales that became part of The Silmarillion.

After the success of the book, and at his publisher’s urging to write a sequel, Tolkien began to “realise the significance of hobbits…they had a crucial role to play in his mythology” (Carpenter 180). In a letter written to Stanley Unwin, his publisher, Tolkien wrote, “Mr Baggins began as a comic tale among conventional and inconsistent Grimm’s fairy-tale dwarves, and got drawn into the edge of it – so that even Sauron the terrible peeped over the edge. And what more can hobbits do?” (qtd by Carpenter 189). When he was writing the manuscript, he wrote a note to himself, “Make return of ring motive.”

Tolkien now had a new story to write, in the Middle-earth that he had created for his language to be spoken. It did not continue in the children’s story vein; it became grandiose, a hero story that continued the story of his mythology. In fact, The Hobbit and LOTR occur in the Third Age, many thousands of years after the stories that created The Silmarillion. Tolkien wrote that it “grew in the telling, until it became a history of the Great War of the Ring and included many glimpses of the yet more ancient history that preceded it…it was primarily linguistic in inspiration and was begun in order to provide the necessary background of ‘history’ for Elvish tongues” (Tolkien, Silmarillion xv).  LOTR, then, had “attached itself firmly to The Silmarillion” and allowed Tolkien the opportunity to “get on with the serious business of his mythology” (Carpenter 192). Through various set-backs, both from his publishers and Tolkien himself, The Silmarillion would never be published in his lifetime, although it was “the work of his heart” (Shippey 223). LOTR, though, was the culmination of his storytelling and linguistic efforts – his mythology. LOTR  “provided both a historical setting and a sense of depth, the elvish languages that he had developed so painstakingly and thoroughly over more than twenty-five years, the Feanorian alphabet in which had had kept his diary from 1926 to 1933, and which he now used for elvish inscriptions in the story” (Carpenter 195).

LOTR was first published in 1954, twelve years from the time The Hobbit was published. There were various setbacks, including the outbreak of World War II in 1939. There were also his personal setbacks, ranging from his academic and professional obligations to his family duties and his own perfectionism; “he felt he must ensure that every single detail fitted satisfactorily into the total pattern. Geography, chronology, and nomenclature all had to be entirely consistent” (Carpenter 198). Most specifically he was concerned with name-making. He had a passion for naming things, and for what things are called, as would be expected in someone so fascinated and immersed in language. The names he created for his stories came from his invented languages, and they were “both the mainspring of his mythology and in themselves a central activity of his intellect” (199). His Elvish languages Quenya and Sindarin played a large part in his name-making, and he also composed several poems and songs in those languages for the book. He also created several other languages for which he felt the story needed. Perhaps another part of his perfectionism, and another compelling aspect of the languages in the stories, was that

he came more and more to regard his own invented languages and stories as ‘real’ languages and historical chronicles that needed to be elucidated. In other words, when in this mood he did not say of an apparent contradiction in the narrative or an unsatisfactory name: ‘This is not as I wish it to be; I must change it.’ Instead he would approach the problem with the attitude: ‘What does it mean? I must find out.’ (Carpenter 102)

By the end of the war, it still wasn’t finished, although he continued to work on it. In 1947, he wrote a revision to The Hobbit that would “provide a more satisfactory explanation of Gollum’s attitude to the Ring” and finally, by the autumn of 1949, he completed his great masterpiece. He had written it “in [his] life’s blood” (qtd in Carpenter 208). It truly was his life’s work, a culmination of all of his literary and linguistic talents. After a few setbacks from publishers, it was finally published in 1954 as a trilogy. The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers were published first; Return of the King was published in late 1955 after Tolkien had completed the appendices, which added details of the history and linguistics of the people in his great mythology.

The books were a huge success, garnering Tolkien fame throughout Britain, and especially in America where LOTR became a bestselling book and where there was a campus cult in the sixties; young Americans began to wear badges that read “Frodo Lives,” “Gandalf for President,” and “Come to Middle-earth.” Graffiti slogans read “J.R.R. Tolkien is Hobbit-forming.” The books’ popularity also spread throughout Europe, as it had been translated into several languages. Millions of copies had been sold around the world, and, after the release of the films in the beginning of the 21st century, the sales in the books peaked again. The books’ enduring popularity is due to the universal themes, including human existence, courage, and hope. Dr. Patrick Curry stated that “new generations of readers can keep on finding meanings from their own lives” (“J.R.R. Tolkien: Origins”). And through reading the works of Middle-

earth, readers are able to view the splendor of Tolkien’s rich world, a world that was based in language. There may never be a fictional story so rich in detail again.

J.R.R. Tolkien retired from his professional career at Oxford in 1959, where he had “brought to even the most intricate aspects of his subject a grace of expression and a sense of the larger significance of the matter.” (Carpenter 139); he had, as C.S. Lewis once wrote of him, been inside language” (qtd in Carpenter 138) and his mythology, ranging from The Silmarillion to The Lord of the Rings is evidence to that. He enjoyed the last years of his life with Edith, his wife, and died on September 2, 1973, leaving behind a whole legacy of a life devoted to language.

 

Works Cited

Carpenter, Humphrey. J.R.R. Tolkien. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2000.

Noel, Ruth S. The Languages of Tolkien’s Middle-earth. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1974. Print.

Shippey, Tom. “J.R.R. Tolkien: Creator of Middle-earth.” The Fellowship of the Ring  Appendices. DVD. New Line Cinema, 2001.

Shippey, Tom. The Road to Middle-earth. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2003. Print.

Smith, Ross. “Fitting Sense to Sound: Linguistic Aesthetics and Photosemantics in the Work of  J.R.R. Tolkien.” Tolkien Studies 3 (2006): 1-20. Project Muse. Web. 21 Apr. 2012.

Tolkien, J.R.R. The Lord of the Rings. 2nd Ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1994. Print.

Tolkien, J.R.R. Preface. The Silmarillion. Ed. Christopher Tolkien. 2nd Ed. New York:  Ballentine, 2002. Print.

Ugolnik, Anthony J. “Wordhord Onleac: The Medieval Sources of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Linguistic  Aesthetic.” Mosaic 10.2 (1977): 15-31. ProQuest. Web. 21 Apr. 2012.

Unwin, Raynor. “J.R.R. Tolkien: Origins of Middle-earth.” The Two Towers Appendices.  DVD.  New Line Cinema, 2002.

 

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Blog Take Over by Ellie Tucker, Chairman of the HopeKids Royal Ball http://angelaraeharris.com/blog-take-over-by-ellie-tucker-chairman-of-the-hopekids-royal-ball/ http://angelaraeharris.com/blog-take-over-by-ellie-tucker-chairman-of-the-hopekids-royal-ball/#respond Wed, 27 Nov 2013 18:01:58 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=294 IMG_7827

HopeKids is a 501c3 nonprofit for children with life threatening illnesses that operates on the idea that it is the hope of something to come that keeps the kids going.There is at least one event planned every month so they always have something to look forward to. If they can make it through a surgery or a chemo therapy treatment they get to go to a movie or a party. It also creates a support system for the kids and their families. They find friends with whom feeding tubes, oxygen tanks, and bald heads are something normal, not something weird to be stared at.

I am chairman of the HopeKids Royal Ball. The first year we held the event, in 2010, we had only 100 kids in Utah attending.  After the publicity we received for just that one event we jumped to having 330 families. Last year we had over 350 in attendance.

The Royal Ball is a magical evening where all of the kids get to leave the hospital and all of their cares behind to step into a fairytale world where they’re no longer “sick kids” they get to be treated like the brave princes and princesses they really are. They eat a royal banquet, listen to live music, ride in Cinderella’s pumpkin carriage, have hair, makeup, and face painting done by fairy godmothers in training, and meet and dance with all of their favorite princesses and characters. It is an incredibly special night.

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The boy who won’t grow up with the girl who never will.

We had one very special little princess who was told by doctors there was no way she was going to live to see August but she wanted to come to the Royal Ball. Her parents stayed up late and got her high enough on the list that she received an invitation knowing she would never get to use it. She waited and waited and planned her outfit and practiced her curtsey until, to the shock of the doctors and her parents, August and the day of the Royal Ball arrived. She sparkled and laughed all night, it was the happiest her parents said they had ever seen her. The very next morning she passed away.

Another little girl didn’t have much hope of living past the Royal Ball either. She even asked the princesses if they would pretty please come to her funeral party. A few months later, however, she entered into remission and mailed a very special letter to Cinderella. It thanked her for the magic pixie dust she had been given at the ball because the happy thoughts and pixie dust had made her all better.

The doctors know medicine and do their best to make the children feel better but if the child sees no reason left to live they’ll stop fighting. I have seen a little bit of hope, a little bit of magic, and a pinch of pixie dust bring the sparkling light back into so many of these kids lives. This charity allows kids to be kids again and reminds them what happy feels like. It is an amazing organization to work with.

This year our Royal Ball will once again be held in August and we would love your support!! If you would like to donate to our cause please contact me, Ellie Tucker, at ellieannetucker@gmail.com or by text or phone call at 801-660-7271.

You can also donate by going to www.hopekids.org, click on the tab that says “DONATE NOW” Then in the DESIGNATION box write Utah HopeKids Royal Ball.

Thank you very much and I hope you all have a magical day!!

-Ellie

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Token Economy System = Getting a Good Nights Sleep http://angelaraeharris.com/token-economy-system-getting-a-good-nights-sleep/ http://angelaraeharris.com/token-economy-system-getting-a-good-nights-sleep/#respond Fri, 22 Nov 2013 00:28:57 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=289  

A few of you may know this, but most of you probably don’t. I work for an amazing group of behavioral therapist at Hopeful Beginnings in Taylorsville, Utah. I went to my boss/CEO, Greg, for advise. You see, my son will be three on December 10th and has slept through the night only a handful of times his entire life. He was diagnosis with eczema when he was just over a year old and the painful inching would keep him up at night. After that was taken care of with medication, the night time bad habit of waking every few hours remained.

There were nights that I would be up every hour with him. He would cry for me and I would go in and refill his sippy cup with milk and tuck him back into bed. We stopped giving him milk and only allowed water about six month ago. It helped a bit but he was still waking several times a night. I was starting to turn into zombie mom during the day.

About two weeks ago, I went to Greg. I was beginning to wonder if my son’s night time awakenings were behavioral based. Greg suggested I start using the token economy system.

It took about five nights before my son finally slept through the night so that I could start the system. I gave him his own coin jar to put quarters in as he was rewarded. (see-through so that he could see them) He was so happy to get his first coin. The next couple of nights he discovered that he didn’t get a quarter when he didn’t sleep through the night. In morning when he woke up I would ask him if he slept all night long and he would tell me no. He started understanding when he could have a quarter and when he didn’t get one. (Note: If they don’t do what they are assigned to do in order to get their reward, you don’t take one away. They simply don’t get a reward.)

This is a great system! It builds up their self esteem, it doesn’t involve punishment and best of all – it works!

You can build up healthy habits and help improve those bad habits with the token economy system. You don’t even have to use quarters. Just get two jars and fill one up with those puffy, craft balls. That one is your jar. Your child gets the empty jar. Every time they do their homework, sleep through the night, brush their teeth, or whatever they need to improve on, they can put a puffy ball into their jar. When their jar is full they get a reward. I’ve even thought about using this system for potty training!

This last week my son has slept through five of seven nights. Mommy is doing much better now!

If you try this – I would love to here from you!!! Leave a comment or post on my Facebook page!

See you next time,

Angela

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Book Spotlight and Contest: The Poet’s Wife by Margie Church http://angelaraeharris.com/book-spotlight-and-contest-the-poets-wife-by-margie-church/ http://angelaraeharris.com/book-spotlight-and-contest-the-poets-wife-by-margie-church/#comments Wed, 13 Nov 2013 15:06:12 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=284

 The Poet's Wife by Margie Church - 200

Title: The Poet’s Wife

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Publisher: Tirgearr Publishing

Release Date: November 11, 2013

 Contest: One commenter will win a copy of The Poet’s Wife by telling me about their close encounter of the paranormal kind.

Blurb:

Lily Holliway’s life is shattered when her husband, Gabe, is killed in Afghanistan. A new job and dear friends aren’t enough to ease her yearnings for the love she clings to.

Gabe feels her grief so strongly that his spirit cannot leave the confines of this world. He can’t rest in peace until he’s sure Lily is going to be okay. In desperation, he reaches out to her using his special gift.

Finding the mysterious haiku makes Lily question her grip on reality. When she sees Gabe face-to-face, can she believe her eyes?

Lily must trust the only man she’s ever loved to help her begin again.

 

 Margie Church 3

Author Bio:

Margie Church writes erotic romance novels with a strong suspense element, in keeping with her moniker: Romance with SASS (Suspense Angst Seductive Sizzle). Never expect the same thing twice in one of her books. She tackles subjects and conflicts that aren’t typical in romances. Life is complicated. People are, too. Marrying those concepts makes her work fascinating to read. Margie was 2011 GLBT Author of the Year, and her book, Hard as Teak, was named 2011 GLBT Book of the Year at Loves Romances Café.

Margie lives in Minnesota, is married, and has two children. Some of her passions are music, poetry, walking on moonlit nights, fishing, and making people laugh. 

She also writes children’s books under the pen name, Margaret Rose.

Keep up with Margie:  Margie’s website: Romance with SASS / Margie’s blog / TwitterFacebook / Facebook Page / Pinterest

This wonderful book was released November 11 by Tirgearr Publishing. If you’re a fan of women’s fiction – love a great plot wrapped in a romance, I hope you’ll read The Poet’s Wife. 

Excerpt:

 Here’s a taste of this compelling ghost story!

 Two hours later, Lily pushed open the service door leading into her kitchen. She balanced a bag of groceries in one arm, and a bright pink geranium marked for clearance in the other. After setting her purchases on the table, she filled a glass with cold tap water and took a deep drink. She pressed the cool glass against her cheek. Today’s temperatures had soared into the upper eighties. She refilled the glass and poured the water into the wilting plant she’d bought.

All afternoon her altercation with Jana at Keeper’s Eatery bugged her. Lily glanced at the telephone hanging on the wall. I’ll call and apologize for being so rude. Tomorrow. I’m sure it’s going to take me half the night to find the right words to explain how I could be so difficult. Again.

Lily put away the groceries and then took the geranium out to the patio. She returned to the kitchen, poured some sweet tea, and opened the Cobb salad she’d bought. Her stomach growled in anticipation. She’d lost her appetite after the showdown with Jana.

The large patio umbrella provided the perfect shade to enjoy her late afternoon meal. A gentle breeze cooled her skin. Lily pierced a tender piece of avocado with a fork and popped the soft fruit into her mouth. She loved the patio. She and Gabe had eaten a lot of their meals out here over the years. Familiar heaviness filled her heart. She loaded her fork with crunchy lettuce and crisp bacon pieces. Tangy bleu cheese melted in her mouth while she chewed.

At the far edge of the backyard, Gabe’s empty bench perched on the knoll above the Missouri River. He’d installed the bench a few summers ago because he said that spot was the perfect place to sit and write poetry. Lily never paid a lot of attention to what he wrote. In fact, she always told him she thought it odd a military police officer would write poems. She remembered the three simple lines she’d found a few weeks ago and wished she hadn’t acted so hastily, crumpling up the paper and throwing it away. She couldn’t remember the exact words—something about the river bringing second chances.

In your dreams, my love. Today, the river brings only a fresh batch of mosquitoes.

She went back inside to refill her tea. Although the wall clock was in the living room, she might as well have been standing right next to it. When did that thing get so loud? She heard a crackling sound and went to investigate.

Lily blinked, not trusting her eyes.

Gabe stood near the patio door, smoothing a crumpled piece of paper against his thigh. He wore his favorite hanging-around-the-house jeans and his faded Royals T-shirt. His tattered tennis shoes should have been tossed ages ago. He’d liked those clothes so much he’d taken them to Afghanistan.

He looked up at her.

Buy The Poet’s Wife Here:

 Tirgearr PublishingAmazon

 

Thank you Margie for sharing your book with us! The cover is gorgeous! Definitely need to add The Poet’s Wife to my to-be-read pile! Don’t forget to leave your encounter of the paranormal kind in the comments to be entered to win a copy of The Poet’s Wife. Contest Ends November 15th.

Don’t forget, one the best things you can do for an indie author is to leave a little review on the site where you purchased their book!

See you next time!

-Angela

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Guest Post by Lindsay Flanagan http://angelaraeharris.com/guest-post-by-lindsay-flanagan/ http://angelaraeharris.com/guest-post-by-lindsay-flanagan/#respond Wed, 06 Nov 2013 17:05:08 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=275 old-paper-with-feather

Sparks

Lindsay Flanagan

I am a poet, and this is my story of my love affair with words.

I write, but I am no acclaimed poet or novelist. I may never be inducted into the mysterious realm of the important and celebrated poets of the world. But I love words. I love the beauty and passion words can create when arranged in specific lines and stanzas, painted across a page as beautifully as an artist’s canvas.  Writing for me was, in the beginning, an experiment of sorts, of wondering what it was like to live a different life. So I created other lives, and the characters became my real friends, incarnated in paper and ink rather than flesh and blood. The teenage angst years were when I truly began to experiment with poetry as a way to flush out the sometimes over-dramatic emotions of being a teenager. Then I heard a song—I always loved music, and songwriters are some of my favorite poets—but this song made me stop in my tracks and say, “Those are my words in his voice. Those are my words in his song.” And that was it—I knew that words would forever be the love of my life.

My teenage angst poetry was not, in fact, poetry—well, it wasn’t publishable, nor did it resemble a honed craft yet. I entered my undergrad as an English major with the questions of what was the essence of poetry, and what could I do to actually write it? The 19th century English poet Percy Bysshe Shelley stated in his essay In Defence of Poetry that a poem “is the very image of life expressed in its eternal truth” (405). Poetry “lifts the veil from the hidden beauty of the world, and makes familiar objects be as if they were not familiar” (406). Poets, he stated, “are the unacknowledged legislators of the World” (410).

I’m quite certain I didn’t – and still don’t—fit the description of being a “legislator of the world,” unacknowledged or otherwise. Frankly, I just love words. I love the look of them on the page; I love the feel of them on my tongue.  I love arranging them in phrases and sentences simply to hear how they sound. Although I think my strength in writing is fiction, not poetry, I have reflected on why I choose to verge onto that foreboding path every now and then. Fast forward approximately two hundred years from Shelley to my graduate poetry class: the introductory material to the class stated that poetry “is a concentrated, constructed, concise, and interactive art form: it attempts to convey the human condition briefly in carefully constructed lines, stanzas and forms; with precise language and evocative images; with music created by sound and rhythm.”

I was, and therefore I am, a poet.

I am a reader and listener of poetry also, although my interpretation of someone else’s poem or song may be completely different from the poet’s intent. I find meaning in reading a poem or listening to a song, for the most part, in the same way I get meaning from my own writing. I find even one line that I can latch onto, that I think will be able to describe a human emotion even in its most basic sense, and I throw it out, like a lasso, hoping to catch something meaningful. Because even those who aren’t writers or even readers still have one characteristic in common—we are human.

Writing poetry, however, is very different than reading it. I suppose most writers, no matter which genre they find themselves drawn to, are asked these same questions:  what inspires you to write, how do the ideas and stories come into your head, and how do you arrange the words of our language into meaningful expressions?

The answers are, of course, very different for each writer. I am inspired by music. I cannot write or play a note of music (only what I remember from my childhood piano lessons), but I’m moved by the backdrop of the melodies and harmonies. I am compelled to words by “another man’s song” (A Silent Film). The story the words tell in the song and the music that surrounds it intoxicates me emotionally and if I don’t write it out, I may have an emotional hangover. I write to capture a slice of a story, to capture an emotion, to express life in its eternal truth, to represent a part of the human condition. I write when it comes to me, or at me, like an unavoidable car crash. It’s a moment of uniting heart and mind expressed in words.  It is in those moments when the heart physically hurts because it cannot contain the emotion inside.

I have been privileged to have met two poets whose words have inspired my ink to flow. My poets are songwriters. Did I mention it’s a type of love story? Then the only way to describe my encounters with them is in a story.

I see him, the poet. Our eyes meet and he holds my gaze, but I’m the first to look away, because my brain has gone as numb as my knees, and my tongue has become a dam, holding back all the things I want to say. When it does let loose, I begin to curse, and not even under my breath. What do I say to a person whose songs have inspired words to take life in me? What do I say to a person whose songs have become the soundtrack to the stories in my head? But there is nothing for it, because if I don’t say something, I never will. So I begin to overflow and drown him with my confessions of how his words have taken up residence in my soul and inspired my own words to free themselves from silence, compelling me to go to the page.

And I take a deep breath. And I write.

I am a poet, and someday, I hope to inspire someone to write as these poets have inspired me. I hope to touch someone the way I have been touched.

I hope to send a spark to someone else’s fingertips.

 

Works Cited

A Silent Film. “Rustle of the Stars.” Sand and Snow. MTHEORY, 2012. MP3.

Shelley, Percy Bysshe. A Defence of Poetry. The Broadview Anthology of British Literature. Eds. Joseph Black, et al. Toronto: Broadview Press, 2011. 402 – 410. Print.

Acknowledgements

I am most gratefully indebted to Diana Webber for her excellent editing skills, and to the two Robs who have inspired and continue to inspire my writing. As always, Shawn and Lily are my reasons.

 

Where to find Lindsay:

Blog / Twitter

 

I would like to thank Lindsay for her beautiful guest post and I hope to have her on my blog as a guest often! Please support her by finding her on twitter and following her blog. Thanks everyone!

See you next time,

Angela

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Book Spotlight and Trailer Reveal: http://angelaraeharris.com/book-spotlight-and-trailer-reveal/ http://angelaraeharris.com/book-spotlight-and-trailer-reveal/#respond Tue, 05 Nov 2013 15:31:50 +0000 http://angelaraeharris.com/?p=266 A Long Time Coming

Title: A Long Time Coming

Genre: Contemporary New Adult

Publisher:  Sunshine Press

 

Blurb:

Abigail Orson has a problem. A love problem to be precise. And she has absolutely no idea how to go about fixing it.

For years now, she’s been chasing her best friend’s brother—demanding things from him that he’s never wanted to give. For one? A real relationship that stems well beyond that dreaded ‘just friends’ zone. You see, David Anderson is her idea of perfection to a T. The one and only guy who has ever had the ability to make her heart beat faster; make her toes curl with the simple blink of his long, girly lashes. But David is also a recovering amputee, and the only thing he really wants out of Abigail is to be left alone. Abigail is a fighter though, and losing the one guy who has ruined her for every other man is no longer an option.

David believes he’s a waste of space. A guy with one leg who has lost his motivation to live—to love—to actually be a man. If only the beautiful girl of his unattainable dreams would get that through her perfect, blonde, stubborn head! He’s not the right guy for Abigail. He’ll never be worthy of what she deserves. However, staying away is almost impossible, especially when he’s just as in love with her as she is with him. But Abigail has a life ahead of her, one that’s definitely livable without a nineteen–year–old gimp like him holding her down. What makes her want to stick around is beyond questionable anymore.

Choices will be made. Lines will be drawn. And together, they will face challenges that nobody saw coming. David and Abigail may have had fourteen years to fall in love, but the thing is, timing and love have never exactly worked in their favor either.

It’s been nineteen years in the making, and definitely A Long Time Coming for David and Abigail. Let’s just hope they don’t screw it up before they actually have the chance to get it right…

 

Excerpt:

He made it to his feet, swaying slightly to the side, just as she reached out a hand to steady him. Her brows drifted together, her lips were pursed to kill. All sass and spice––the girl was straight up sex in a sweater dress. “And what is that supposed to mean?” She stood with her hands at her hips. David narrowed his eyes as her neckline slipped lower. He traced the edge with his gaze, wishing it was his fingers instead.

“It just means that you’re trying to mess with my head.”

She scoffed, pressing her hand over the dip of that crack he wanted to keep ogling. Damn. That was twice now in a span of two seconds that he imagined touching that very spot. This time though, he wasn’t thinking about using his hands… He sucked in a gasp and released a quiet groan at the thought. Yeah, he was in a shit ton of trouble with this girl.

But really though, what was new?

 

 AND NOW FOR THE BOOK TRAILER REVEAL:

http://youtu.be/0LZn9p2uZnA

 

Book and Author Links:

Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter / Website

Don’t forget, one the best things you can do for an indie author is to leave a little review on the site where you purchased their book!

See you next time!

-Angela

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