“I am proud to know Molly and share writing experiences with her.”
Marcia Fine, www.marciafine.com, author of “Stressed in Scottsdale,” “Boomerang, When Life Comes Back to Bite You,” and “The Blind Eye.” 

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I am unable to write anything worth reading.

Peace to Charlottesville and to the United States.

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We had a massive purge recently. It was pouring outside, and we were casting around for something to do. So I suggested we go through the cupboards. Whew.

Here is the thing: when you live in a house with tons of storage for thirty years, all those shelves, attic rooms, basement expanses, and charming “cubbyholes” fill up. The path of least resistance: why think about whether or not you might need something in the future if you can just shove it on a shelf somewhere and forget about it? No need to agonize about those three pewter napkin rings and where the fourth one disappeared to, right? It’s possible that we might have a single dinner guest sometime. Speaking of dinner, doesn’t everybody have seven sets of placemats? And a series of Christmas mugs with holly sprigs on them that you have never really liked, but heck, there is room on the shelf for them?

So we started going through everything. Right pantry cupboard, top shelf. One time I had a brunch. It was outside in the Spring. I must have thought all the guests were klutzy, because I felt it necessary to purchase twenty four white plastic mugs for the coffee, along with the same number of matching “luncheon” sized plates. I have no memories whatsoever of the party. Furthermore, I have not used either mugs or plates ever again, and yet there they have been, waiting, ever since. To Goodwill.

Doesn’t everybody have four egg coddlers?

How about Aspirin with an expiration date of April, 2005? Five sleeves of cotton pads? A giant pack of travel size Metamucil (what vacation was that)?

We also came across an entire drawer of those booklets you get when you buy a new appliance. You know, the ones that tell you about the warranty, how to troubleshoot, and who to call when something goes wrong before the warranty expires? We found the one from the washing machine we bought in 1972. The warranty has expired. 

Plastic containers, my Lord. There were millions of them. We got it down to four. For a person that hasn’t been to the gym in seven years, I had ten water bottles. We haven’t had a cookout in at least a decade, so we determined that we no longer need two dozen of those basket things  to put under cheap, flimsy paper plates. 

It was a long afternoon. We felt triumphant afterwards, and we both took naps.

But in the back of my mind, there is a little, worried voice:

“What if you decide to have a brunch?”


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Climate change is turning Dayton into a sort of rainforest. We have had so much precipitation that the lushness is overtaking us. The lawn has to be mowed constantly. There are mosquitoes everywhere. It is so humid that I break out into a sweat inside the air conditioned house whenever I exert myself even slightly. Folding laundry requires a shower afterwards.

The lushness is glorious, however. I feel almost as if we have retired to Florida without leaving home. The sound of rain hitting the roof is very cozy, and we have gotten used to carrying umbrellas with us.

Winter is another matter, however. I like snow in winter. Christmas in the rain when it is warm enough outside to go without a coat is just wrong. Sleigh bells-my grandchildren won’t even know what they are. Santa may have to start wearing Bermuda shorts.

I donated my down coat to Goodwill. I am not sure if it will make it all the way to Lapland or Alaska, or somewhere that is cold enough for winter coats. I am keeping my Uggs, though, because they “breathe.” I am not sure that breathing boots are a good thing, but I see girls wearing Uggs in late summer, so the Uggs may be good for those days when it cools down and I need something a bit warmer than loafers.

The electric blanket manufacturers must all be hiring lobbyists to talk to the President about global warming. They must fear bankruptcy. And all those ski resorts must be worried. And I have noticed that catalogs now feature sweaters in their summer mailings. Brainwashing-they think they can get rid of all of that unsold sweater inventory sitting around in their warehouses by telling us that wearing one in the summer is totally fashionable. As if we all need that extra layer on chilly 80 degree summer evenings.

In the meantime, I carry a little silk fan around with me in my purse, I drink water like it’s going out of style, and I thank heaven for anti-perspirant. And I say a prayer daily that my ice maker won’t go on the fritz.

August is coming. The neighbor kids won’t be setting up lemonade stands-they will be offering breakfast specials: two eggs, sunny side up, fried right here on the sidewalk!


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If you are not a Facebook user, this post may not excite you. If you are on Facebook, and you love to read, then it will! August 8 is the day. Readers Coffeehouse is the place. On that one day only, dozens of terrific authors, including Pam Jenoff, Mary Kubica, Catherine Ryan-Hyde, Steena Holmes, Katie Moretti, Kimberly Belle, Liz Clark Fenton and Lisa Stink Dannenfeldt, Laura Drake, Heather Gudenkauf, and many others–including me, will be doing giveaways of their signed books to readers. All day long, new books will be posted.

If you are not a member of this public Facebook group for readers, just look for it in the Facebook search bar and join. The giveaway is all day on August 8, with individual authors posting their own book giveaways throughout the day. This will be an epic event, and you won’t want to miss out.

In the meantime, enjoy the heat and humidity. But put August 8 on your calendar, and check in regularly during the day for the continuous bookish fun! 🙂

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HIM: What is all this stuff? We are going to be gone for a week. It looks as if you think we are moving!

ME: It’s a condo. The literature says that “renters are responsible for all bathroom, beach, cooking, and miscellaneous items.”

HIM: Is this condo in a resort? Don’t resorts have soap and towels?

ME: They apparently don’t have enough soap and towels for seven people. So we have to bring it. This is just my share. Oh, and the porta-crib and high chair are upstairs. Plus, luggage and golf clubs.

HIM: (looking through a bag) You are bringing candles? Does this place have electricity?

ME: Those are for atmosphere. Everything else is an essential. Like this Aloe Cream, for instance. One of the babies might get a sunburn. And the Tums. You know, heartburn.

HIM: You are covering all burn eventualities.

ME: Absolutely.

HIM: Ok, then what is this? (holds up a pack of AAA batteries)

ME: For the headlamps.


ME: Yes. For night exploring with your grandson.

HIM: Right. And I guess the binoculars are for…?

ME: Birdwatching. He might like birdwatching.

HIM: He’s three years old.

ME: We need to keep him occupied. You know, so he doesn’t get bored.

HIM: And birdwatching is SO not boring for three year old boys.

ME: The fishing poles were too expensive.

HIM: Not that sitting holding a pole for long periods with absolutely nothing happening isn’t boring. I am surprised you didn’t get a chess set.

ME: Oh, I did.  Just a cheap one. His mother said we need to keep him mentally challenged.

HIM: Gotta go.

ME: Where?

HIM: To the attic. I think I might be able to find my Master’s Thesis. It’s on Abstract Risk and Tangible Suffering: ADD/ADHD and Psychostimulant Medications. He might be interested in that.

ME: Sighs and packs one more beach towel and a jar of cinnamon…

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