Gobble Gobble Day, Writing Workshop & Books



Hello bloggers! Happy Monday and happy holidays! This week is Thanksgiving Week! What are you thankful for this year?

Some people are excited and back home for this week’s holiday, while others are attending work this week and can’t wait till Wednesday, when they’ll be set free for the rest of the week till next Monday. So, how are you planning on spending this LONG weekend?

I’m still in denial. The fact that, four days from now is Thanksgiving, baffles me. Completely and utterly baffles me. I have never, and I mean, NEVER in my life, gotten this close to the holidays and not felt it. I’m telling you, I feel nothing. I feel as though my city has gone crazy putting Christmas decor and discussing Thanksgiving recipes in July. It doesn’t help that I live in South Florida where it is HOT, and HUMID, and RAINY, and feels NOTHING like the Holidays.

It’s really bizarre because if you knew me, you’d probably want to send me in for a medical evaluation. I’m THAT person. The one who LOVES Christmas music and decorations November 1st. THAT girl, whose cheery and jolly and comes to life during this season. It’s MY season. It’s my favorite time of year. You have Thanksgiving, then my birthday, then Christmas, then New Years. I relish in this time and yet…NOTHING. I am dumbfounded that 2013 is over. This makes absolutely NO sense to me.

Okay, I’m going to stop before I drive myself crazy, and before driving y’all crazy with my denial.

Anyway! A couple things…

Remember I mentioned in my last blog, I’d attempt the “Ariel needs coffee” picture and would post it? Well, I did it. By NO MEANS whatsoever did it come out identical but hey, I tried. Ignore the weird hand, that was my attempt at emulating her Disney hands of frustration and I failed.

ariel coffee

I pat myself on the back about one thing though, I think the hair similarities were pretty sweet.

So every year now, I make one contribution for Thanksgiving. I can’t cook or technically bake, but one year I became ambitious after a commercial tutorial from Food Network. I blame you Sunny, and my family thanks you! *wink* Deep Dish Hazelnut Pumpkin Pie, ladies and gentlemen!

I don’t know what possessed me to think I could pull it off but I did, and I’m proud of it. Now everyone demands that I make it every year.

Here’s the Food Network picture of the pie:


So yummy! It’s like a Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake. Here are the additions I put to it:



I make fresh whipped cream from scratch and dollop it over the pie. Then I caramelize crushed pecans, let them cool and candy over, then sprinkle them on top. One year, when I was REALLY being bad, I lastly drizzled, lightly, Caramel and Chocolate syrup on top.


Here’s the recipe, in case you’re interested in impressing your family this year with not just another ordinary Pumpkin Pie, but a twist and sprinkle of pizazz Pumpkin Pie!


Watch the quick video tutorial and find the detailed recipe and instructions on the “Recipe” tab where the video displays.

Writing Workshop with Lauren Oliver:


Writing YA: Spark, Structure and a little bit of Sparkle @BookFair

1) The Spark: conceiving of ideas that are both marketable and meaningful.
2) The Structure: understanding plot and building solid narrative architecture.
3) The Sparkle: the importance of a great first sentence, and the way to achieve voice through specificity.



I didn’t know what to expect, meeting Lauren Oliver. I knew she was a New Yorker, and seemed cool on her weekly vlogs, but still, sometimes you wonder how nice, or chill, or down to earth these authors might be.

It was so refreshing and wonderful to see how she was all of those things. As you see in picture #2 she just hopped onto that desk, crossed her legs and got cozy with her fuzzy slippers.

I truly enjoyed this workshop. I feel so privilege to have been able to be a part of this class. I learned SO much and feel more confident attacking my new draft of my manuscript after this. She gave such clear understanding and step by step direction on approaching your story. She helped us understand not only what steps to take to make a story your own and good but about marketability as well.

This is an experience I’ll always treasure as one of my big “firsts”.

Reading Books:


For this long weekend, as much as my fingers are itching to get back to writing, I intentionally want to put A LOT of time aside to reading. I have so many books I am dying to read! I have a stack of books that are taunting me with their pretty covers. I need to officially make a dent in that pile ASAP!

I’m finally reading Mockingjay, so for all of you awaiting my review, I’ll make sure as soon as I finish it, I’ll dedicate a blog post to it. I am sadly NOT a part of the group who have already seen Catching Fire in theaters, but I’m hoping to join my niece the Friday after Thanksgiving to finally watch it! I’ve heard such amazing things about it.

So that is all for today. May everyone have an amazing week and Holiday weekend! May you all eat lots of yummy turkey, pies, and read tons of books this week.

May you all find someone, if not family to spend this Thankful holiday with. It’s the little things in life, even when life has been difficult and felt as though it is falling apart, that I need to remember are the true joys in life. Hold on to them (the little things) and don’t lessen their impact because they “pale” in comparison to the big things.

It has been a very difficult year for me and my family. It’s been a year of coping, and recovering, reinventing, remembering, and holding on to one another to get by another day. It’s probably why I don’t feel the holidays for the first time ever, and this year flew by. We’re still dealing with events of the last year. In all that muck, I have to remind myself that, I have a family–though small, they’re here–and we went through hell, but we went through it together. I have to be thankful for that. We love each other and support one another–I have to be thankful for that. We still have a home, and food on our table every day and have little luxuries still–I have to be thankful for that. I have finally defined a passion I carried all my life but shied away from for years and though I fear I waited too long, that’s a lie–it’s never too late. I have much to be thankful for this year. How about you? Count the ways *grin*

Happy Thanksgiving bloggers! And if you’re from another country, take the time this week still to count the things you’re thankful for. Pay it forward perhaps.

You all are awesome!

Happy Reading!


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