Monday, August 15, 2011


I have another new kitty! His named Simba. He is a small orange kitten with long fur. Here is what I have learned about him so far.

1. He is very smart. He mastered the use of the litter box, drinking milk from a bowl, drinking water, and eating dry food all in his first week of living in a house. (Prior to this he had been quartered in the rafters of a shop and the inner hidey holes within a combine).
2. He has sharp teeth. He gnawed off three rubber bottle nipples in three minutes prior to mastering the skills above.
3. He is a fantastic climber, believes in heading for high ground, and likes to scale the back of the couch.
4. He loves to play.
5. And play.
6. And play.
7. He snuggles!
8. He hates being locked in the cat carrier.
9. When hiding, he heads directly for the deepest darkest corner of the room. Which in a kitchen, means the back of an open cupboard.
10. He is totally unafraid of my other cat, Charlotte, which FYI is more than I can say for my parents’ kitty, Billy, or the one-eyed tomcat she pestered—i.e. yowled at—for two hours the other day in the jungle next door.

Hope your kitties are all doing well!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Paranormal Romance with HUMOR

Me: It is time to introduce you to the Blossom Culp books.

Aurelia: The what?

Me: Four novels by Richard Peck starring the main characters, Blossom Culp and Alexander Armsworth. Four books which, BTW, are A. Fabulously entertaining reading for anyone between the ages of 9 and 99. B. The best teacher read-a-louds I have ever come across. And C. Technically examples of paranormal romance published way ahead of their time. With superior humor.

Book 1: The Ghost Belonged to Me—in which seventh grader, Alexander Armsworth, has the unfortunate experience of . . .

-Becoming trapped in a fire escape with his classmate, the spidery-legged girl from across the tracks—aka Blossom Culp.
-Finding a small wet dog in his family’s barn, and . . .
-Discovering that the dog belongs to a ghost.

Book 2: Ghosts I Have Been—in which the narrative is now taken over by the vibrant voice of eighth grader, Blossom Culp. Who has the remarkable experience of . . .

-Scaring the pants off her neighbor, Alexander Armsworth, and the “low-lifes” he has regrettably teamed up with for the night of Halloween.
-Been invited—against ALL likelihood—to attend one (and only one) exclusive meeting of the Sunny Thoughts and Busy Fingers Sisterhood, and . . .
-Begun seeing a small ghost boy who appears to be on the recently sunk Titanic.

Book 3: The Dreadful Future of Blossom Culp—in which our heroine . . .

-Moves on to the frightening, and entirely unspiritual, hazards of high school.
-Rescues the entire freshman class from embarrassing themselves during the Freshman Haunted House, and . . .
-Fast forwards one hundred years into the modern day.

Book 4: Blossom Culp and the Sleep of Death—in which Blossom . . .

-Attempts to rescue Alexander Armsworth . . . from himself. And the clutches of the popular Letty Shambaugh.
-Spies upon Alexander, who appears to be scrubbing the library floor with a toothbrush.
-And, along with Alexander, is in serious peril of being cursed by the ghost of an Ancient Egyptian princess.

All in the average lives of two teens from the opposite side of the tracks in 1800’s Bluff City. Two teens with NOTHING in common. Except the ability to run into each other. And see ghosts.