Puppy love and care

Is Fido your best bud? Is he part of your family? Do you throw him birthday parties and arrange play dates with other pet parents so he can get together with his friends at the local bark park? Yeah? Me too! I totally get where you’re coming from.

We love our pets and they’ve become a part of our families-if they were human, they’d be the equivalent of your middle school BFF that you would spend hours on the phone with and who called your parents “Mom” and “Dad”. Therefore, you take care of them like you would your own child. You make sure you clean them, feed them, play with them, exercise them mentally and physically, and take them for their yearly check-ups and shots.

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When it comes to being a good pet parent, you don’t want to cut corners. I once had a fenced acre of land for my dogs to run in, but I also had a cheap husband. How does that factor in to dog care? He built the fence with recycled materials (not in an eco-friendly way but in a cheap “hey I found this length of chicken wire in the road” kind of way) despite my insistence that we buy solid, sound fencing, and my dogs were constantly running free. This is not cool. There were coyotes running free. My American Eskimo could have been coyote food! The lesson to be learned here is that you shouldn’t go cheap on your pal’s living environment, especially outdoors.

If your dogs spend a lot of time outside, whether it’s because they have a doggie door and a properly fenced-in area or because you like to go hiking with your pal and spend hours on the trail, water is essential. Fresh water in the yard that’s freshened every day (or every hour if your dog is like mine and washes their paws in the water bowl) not only keeps them hydrated but healthy, with no risk of infection from water-born illnesses. If you’re on a long hike or run, then carry a bottle of water for Fido. On hot summer days when you’re pouring sweat, that’s a good indication that your buddy is hot too. Especially considering all that hair he’s wearing.

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Inside, your pal needs stimulation. Let’s face it, you are not always home. People have to work, and Spot is home alone. She needs to have something to keep her occupied besides your expensive couch or dining room chairs. We recently rescued a puppy from the local shelter, and it had been a long time since either one of us raised a puppy. We got puppy chew toys, and rope pulls, and pork rolls…we went a little crazy with puppy toys. The weekend was wonderful, full of puppy-bliss and laughs, and then…Monday. She chewed everything but her toys. And this behavior wasn’t restricted to when we weren’t home.

Not only did we learn the finer art of crate training after that (which, for the record, I had fought against and now completely recommend. Kinda of like my resistance to digital photography at first), but we started a toy rotation with her, because it seemed as though if she had ALL her toys, she got bored quickly, but if I changed out her toys every day, she seemed to be happier and more engaged. Now, she knows to not chew on mommy’s expensive bookcases and instead enjoy her rubbery bone thingy until it’s time to switch to her rope pull toy, which she likes to toss into the air and catch… omgshe’ssocute!

There is a ton advice out there, and with the exception of the basics-food, water, excerise-it all varies. Some of it works, some of it doesn’t, you just have to find what works best for you and your fur-kid. I had a Lab puppy 15 years ago that would have chewed the same toy every day and not thought twice, but my Basenji-Shephard mix needs stimulation and variety. Who knew? One thing is for certain, you have many years ahead of you filled with joy and unconditional love…and maybe some chewed socks.

A wee break…

I needed a little break from all the writing-working-schooling things that I do in a day, and one of my favorite things is “Inside the Actors Studio”. I love to watch the actors answer questions, and I love James Lipton’s way of talking- slightly snarky, and yet warm and welcoming. I think he’s the only person that can pull off that combination. I was also feeling nostalgic for the slam books that we used to do in junior high and high school. Anyway, I love the 10 questions at the end and have used some of them to make conversation around the dinner table if my family is looking more at their plates than at each other, so I thought it would be fun to answer them here 🙂

If I were on “Inside the Actors Studio” these would be my responses to James Lipton’s 10 questions:

1. What is your favorite word?
Ludicrous. I find I’m using it a lot lately

2. What is your least favorite word?
That’s a hard one. I love words. Except for some weird, only-find-their-meaning-on-Urban-Dictionary words.

3. What turns you on?
That spark that occurs between two people that creates instant heat.

4. What turns you off?
Someone who is disrespectful and rude.

5. What sound do you love?
The sound of a river. Or the wind in the trees in autumn.

6. What sound do you hate?
Honking horns

7. What is your favorite curse word?
I know it’s trite, but I do love the word f*ck. I drop a lot of f-bombs.

8. What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?
Forestry. Either a field biologist or a forest ranger. I wouldn’t mind being a GC either and following in my father’s footsteps. I grew up on construction sites and love building and renovation work.

9. What profession would you not like to do?
Sales. I am so not a salesman.

10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?
“You weren’t quite the bad person that you thought you were.”

The Unfinished Song series by Tara Maya

One day I got an e-mail from an fellow author’s personal assistant, and she introduced herself and said that Tara Maya wanted to do a blog swap with  me. Sure! I answered quickly, thinking to myself that I have no clue what to do for a blog swap. I’ve only done one other with Loren Kleinman, so I’m still new to this stuff. So Katie (that’s her name) sent back a link to a free copy of the first book in the series, Initiate (get it free on Amazon!). Now…I admit up front that when I read the synopsis that, I thought to myself that it wasn’t my usual reading. However, I had made a commitment, and I was going to stick to it.

I started reading about Dindi, and Kavio, and tama’s, and dancing chromas and before I knew it, I had bought the whole series. All six books. I bought the last three even before I finished the third book! Tara brings you into the story, puts you right into the middle of Yellow Bear tribe and the Rainbow Labyrinth; you can feel Dindi’s shyness and longing when she steals a look at Kavio, and her heartbreak when…well. I don’t want to give away anything. I’m still in the middle of book five, so I don’t even know how it’s going to end, but I have a feeling a certain Zaevedi (sp?) is now a certain Deathsworn….anyway. I get caught up.

I’ll be brutally honest-I can’t even write my own synopsis for my books without spending hours upon hours fretting over it and pulling out hair (not always my own) so I would NOT do the series justice if I tried to describe it to you, dear reader. Just trust me when I say that you will thoroughly enjoy the series, you will truly care about the characters, and you will truly come to love Tara Maya’s Faearth. I think I’m going to go dance my own tama, and let my chroma’s flow. Enjoy!

 

P.s. Looking for more info on Tara Maya? Click the links below 🙂

http://taramayastales.blogspot.com/

http://www.amazon.com/Tara-Maya/e/B004HAI038/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

 

 

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I need your opinion!

So, I’ve been REALLY busy. I mean, REALLY REALLY busy. I get up at 5 (or maybe 6 if I hit snooze enough times), get my son out of bed, walk the dog, throw breakfast together, then I’m out the door for work. I get home around 5-ish, make dinner, check homework, kiss hubby…sounds like a normal day, right? For a lot of women, it IS a normal day. Not so me. After I kiss the hubby and hug the son, I’m either out the door to do school work, or I’m out the door to find a place to write or promote (which I haven’t been doing so that I could just write). 6 days a week. On Sunday, I don’t rest; that’s when I’m washing clothes, cleaning the house, grocery shopping, etc etc ad nauseum. I DID choose this life for myself, that is true, but now I am exhausted. I have to give up something.

I am NOT giving up writing. I refuse!

I also don’t want to give up school; it’s a dream of mine to finally finish my college education. That just leaves the full-time job, because I obviously can’t give up my husband and son! So, I’m going to submit Magick on Pubslush, a crowdfunding platform for authors. No, I am not soliciting donations (although I wouldn’t turn them down!) but I need to build my profile on there before I can start my campaign, which will hopefully lead to enough money that I can take 6-8 months off work so that I can devote a full 8 hours a day to writing, and maybe get some down-time to boot.  One of the things that I need is 3 images that represent Magick, the book. Now, I know that no one has read Magick, but if you read Eternity, then you definitely know the characters in Magick-Teagan and Noah- and I need images that best describe them. I’ve been scouring Google for hours now, giving up precious writing time, and I just can’t find anything that I am happy with.

This is where YOU come in. Send me images you think would represent Magick, and if I pick your images, you will receive an advanced copy of Magick before it gets published! You can either send me a link in the comment section below, or drop me an email at author@teresafederici.com. I can’t wait to hear from you and see all the images that you’ll pick! Good luck! Okay, I’m off to write some more before bedtime.

 

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Coming up for air

I didn’t forget! I just have been burning the midnight oil to get Magick finished, and now that I am on a 3-week break from school, I should be able to kick it into high gear! PLUS, I’ve added some new plot twists that are completely unexpected! Okay, time to take a gulp of air and head back under. I’ll be surfacing a little later in the week to post about Tara Maya’s The Unfinished Song series, which has totally hooked me. Talk to you soon!

 

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Big Sky Country

In honor of Choices being offered free tomorrow on Amazon, I thought I would entertain you with the places that share the story with the characters 🙂

Tomorrow, I’ll bring you the “cast” of Choices-at least in my mind!

Abby’s Cabin

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Logan’s ranch house

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The view

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Their first ride…

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The Valentine’s Day Dance

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Just some goofiness to liven up the day 🙂

 

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Montana & Choices

When I was in the 6th grade at New River Middle School, my Geography teacher had us pick a state and do a book report on it. I was one of the last to choose a state and all the “cool” states were already picked. Don’t ask me what constitutes a “cool” state to an 11 year old, because I just don’t remember.

I perused the available states, discarding Delaware, South and North Dakota, and Connecticut, and grabbed Montana. To this day I’m not sure why I grabbed it, but it was momentous, even if I didn’t know it then. I’ve been pretty much obsessed with Montana ever since. It was also the best book report that I ever completed in my entire academic career.

I started incorporating Montana into my stories when I started writing at the age of 14-along with private islands that my friends and I bought when we became fabulously rich. For some reason, I just connected with a state I had never been to. Maybe it was the romance of the old west, maybe it was the cowboys, maybe it was the fact that it was wide open and I could run my horse as far as the eye could see…who knows?

I tried my entire life to get to Montana, but something always came up and I couldn’t go. When I got married to my ex-husband in 2002, I asked if we could honeymoon in Yellowstone National Park, and he agreed! I was finally going to Montana! And yes, before you say anything, I know that most of Yellowstone is actually in Wyoming and only a small portion, the North Entrance, is in Montana.

I made reservations for a cabin in Gardiner, MT and we spent 2 glorious weeks there. The scenery is stunning, the people are friendly and the spaces are definitely wide open! The wildlife was something to see, and the mountains were just draw-dropping. When we weren’t in the Park, we were exploring Southwest Montana-driving into Bozeman, Livingston, Belgrade, Paradise Valley…gorgeous.

So, when it came time to write Choices, I knew where it had to be set. Montana is the only place for a man like Logan and a woman like Abby. I needed the atmosphere, the animals, the “big sky”. Le sigh…I think I need another trip. Or just break down and move there, already.

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P.S. Want to read all about Montana, Logan, and Abby? Check it out at Amazon!