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Update — Swimming Naked is with the editor

Deleted Scene…

“I was thinking about taking Logan and a couple of his friends to see the college lacrosse championship on Memorial Weekend, just the championship game,not the whole tournament,” Phil said to Lina when he arrived home with Logan.

“That’s nice.” She was at the counter, slicing vegetables.

“It’s in Philadelphia this year.” He leaned his hip against the counter as he watched her. “Do you want to come?”

“No.”

“Come on. It will be fun. We could spend the night and check out the city.”

Lina set down her knife and wiped her hands on a towel before closing the small distance between them and framing his face with her cool hands. She stood on her  tiptoes and softly kissed his lips. “No,” she whispered before brushing her lips over his again. “We’ve already seen the Liberty Bell.”

He clasped the sides of her hips, pulling her lower body into his. He knew she’d never really liked lacrosse. She thought it was too physical. When he’d spot her in the stands during his high school and college games, she’d more often than not have her hands covering her eyes. “Logan and I aren’t playing. You won’t have to worry about us getting hurt.”

“I never worried about you getting hurt. I was always worried you were going to hurt someone. I didn’t want to have the memory of it in my mind.” She linked her arms around his neck. “Take Logan and have fun. You don’t need me there.”

He let his gaze drift over her face. He knew every inch of it. Even the laugh lines around her eyes which had come in the past couple of years were etched in his memory. “I’m still making up for lost time.”

“Gross—stop looking at each other like that,” Katie said. “I shouldn’t have to be afraid to come in to my own kitchen.”

Lina kissed him again before stepping away from him.

“Your kitchen?” Phil asked Katie. His gaze remained on Lina, watching the feminine sway of her hips as she crossed to the refrigerator.

653 Comments on “Update — Swimming Naked is with the editor

  1. Hi Kay — thanks for reaching out. There is a more recent comment thread at the top of my blog readers are now using — it’s right above the cover picture of SN. I’m going to copy your post to that thread so the others see it.
    One comment — he made it clear at the end of WPF that he was going to be part of his son’s life. What you saw earlier in WPF was a desperate man doing everything in his power to try to keep Kim from having his baby.

  2. New to the party here with some observations and questions:
    Have spent FAR more time than expected angsting over WPF. Still get a heart clench whenever I think of “Your husband couldn’t get enough of me” and the trip to their vacation house. Looking forward to getting additional perspective on both and more.

    Everything Phil did was so intentional. It didn’t “just happen,” at least not after the first time in New York. And the way I read it, he had been intimate with Kim on that last trip to New York just before Lina saw Kim’s message and was trying to figure out a way to see her that very weekend. It wasn’t until he reconnected with Lina that Friday night and when I think his boss/friend/mentor told him to end it with Kim, only then did he begin to do so. And according to Lina, it had only been three weeks since she and Phil had been intimate; it wasn’t as if it was a four month drought at home.
    He keeps repeating that Lina and the children are the most important things in his life and he would never do anything else to hurt them. He tells Kim that he will only “meet his legal responsibilities and nothing more” to the child. Then in SN we find out he is now playing Daddy to the new baby. Not that it isn’t understandable in a way. But if anything would hurt his first family, it would be this, and hurting Linda and the children further is what he said he wouldn’t do. In Phil’s case, pay attention to what he does, not what he says, evidently. He tells Lina he will put her needs before everyone else’s. Again he doesn’t do that unless he thinks her needs involve watching him take care of his baby with another woman. Starting to get angry here!

    What was the relationship Kim thought she had or expected to have with Phil. She is angry at Lina as if Lina is the intruder, not herself. How else to explain her behavior at the wedding? I feel no sympathy for her, unlike a few others here, but I do wonder what exactly Phil allowed her to expect from the relationship.

    In relation to Nick, when Lina asked if he would cheat on his wife, he says, “I would never cheat on you, Lina.” Not exactly the same thing. And we soon know that he is at least emotionally cheating on his girlfriend.

    Questions:
    Is there any way to access the scenes that are referred to in the comments in the blog. I have seen the ones posted, but feel like there are more that are being referenced?

    I am so looking forward to reading the rest of the story in Swimming Naked and compliment Laura on giving us such a thought provoking book.

  3. Girls think about this…how would Kim’s narcissistic personality take it if Lina told Kim what she thought in the Epilogue of WPF? Lina and Kim scene where Kim approaches Lina and of course Kim is her typical self….Lina stops her and says….I know my husband had an affair with you, old news. Phil’s infidelity has strengthened the foundation of our marriage and reminded us of how much we love each other. Yes Liam was unexpected, but he has rounded out our family and we couldn’t be happier to have him. Just wanted you to know where I stood.

  4. J I’ve tried posting several times this morning but unable to do so. Hopefully this comment goes through.
    Is your question about the husband being redeemable about Leaving Haven? If so yes the wife does come home.

    • I have been seriously vacillating about buying Leaving Haven—$10 is a lot for an author I’ve never read, especially when I can’t bring myself to spen $9 for a Colleen Hoover.

      Is it worth the $10?

  5. Good Morning Girls….
    Tara I’ve always straddled the fence on the custody issue. But I can say, however Laura ends SN it will be realistic….

  6. I need to reread the different threads for Swimming Naked.

    Has Laura said the Hunters eventually have full custody of Liam? The only way I see this happening is if Kim moves on to a relationship with someone that doesn’t want Liam. Or, she could get hit by a bus!

    There’s a part of me that sees Kim as Phil’s penance (a good Catholic word :). He made poor decisions that lead to having a child with a woman not his wife. Even if she’s psychotic, narcissistic, and unredeemable, Kim is the mother of his child. He and Lina will be dealing with the consequences of this for the rest of their lives.

    A little devil’s advocate here… doesn’t their having full custody seem a little too neat an ending?

  7. Dang J I don’t remember which Christina Lauren’s book I wanted to read. I’m like a kid in a candy store, I want them all.

  8. J I haven’t read Jude Deveraux in several years, to me her older series are better. I stopped reading when she started the time travel books which don’t appeal. Have you read Leaving Haven by Kathleen McCleary I remember it as a good read. Husband’s affair resulting in a child 300-400 pages. I put it on my TBR just until I can get my library card renewed. It’s been awhile so I’m going to reread. Our library is a regional and you have to order books, takes weeks at times. I’m hoping the books I want are downloadable. There’s Going back by Judith Arnold I’m undecided about. Have you checked out Wattpad? People trying out stories on readers. A lot of students and it slow going with a few chapters at a time. Completed books are tagged as such. You can pick your favorite genre. A lot of them are quite good. What are you reading now?

    • Thanks Deighj. I will look into k mclearly. I love new book recs. I started Linda Kage’s Masons POV book. It’s ok so far. I started Christina Lauren’s(the one you wanted to read) but couldn’t concentrate. It’s a loaner from the library so I should at least skim it. I’ll let you know if it’s worth it.

      • Oh deighj, I have the book. I must have bought it after WPF when I went through a cheating theme frenzy. Is the husband redeemable? Also I cannot read watrpad because My eyes hurt when I stare at the computer that long. I need to hold something when I’m reading. I think I’m too old for the watt pad.

  9. Kbabe I could see Kim looking at Liam as a reminder of her failure in obtaining Phil, that’s good too! I’m sorry 2500 to rewire your car, what a bummer! puppies can destroy in a matter of minutes…How did that go over with your husband?

    • My husband called him “YOUR bog” and “most expensive mutt rescue” for many months. Oh well. It happens. We did training with him, and he’s a much better dog now. My husband would’ve been much more upset had the damage been to been his truck.

  10. If Kim is truly narcissistic, it’s not unrealistic that she could never truly love another person (more than herself at least). Can’t you see it? There’s no chance with Phil and she looks at Liam and thinks, “I don’t want you anymore! You’re part Phil- that asshole who ruined my life!” She gives 100% custody to Phil. She moves away with a new guy. Kim’s family would still be involved, I think.

    Ann, I’m sorry you’re sick.
    If it makes you feel better, our puppy chewed through the wires under my passenger seat and we had to have the whole car rewired for $2500

  11. We don’t know where SN is going, but that is what makes the waiting more fun! Living in our imaginations is probably entertaining for Laura, just like it is for us Lol…..

    I don’t see Kim as fish food or her holding on to prison bars singing spirituals. It will have to be an opportunity that only benefits her to hand Liam over to the Hunter’s… But what is it???? Killing me Laura….Lol

    • Bahaha. Singing spirituals. Yes I think what we think is realistic right? Kim only had Liam becasue of Phil. When she realizes in SN her efforts are in vain she will drop her ball and chain. Now we have to imagine what makes her give up. She did try for 2-3 years. Omg what guy is worth 3 yrs of your life? Lol

  12. J i’m at a loss here, just where Laura wants us. I don’t think anything drastic will happen to Kim other than realizing she will not get an HEA with Phil. So I’d go for meeting someone new or a fantastic job offer FAR away.

    I’m outta juice, keep em straight Jgirl.

    • Ok. How about this. Kim loves Phil till she doesn’t. So after the big climactic scene that we all are dying to know, Kim realizes she can’t have Phil. So at that point why would she want Liam? She can’t have Phil, she loved Liam like a toy or a weapon to get Phil, she loses Phil so she ditches Liam too. It has nothing to do with endangering Liam but everything to do with him not serving a purpose anymore. She jets off far away and her family doesn’t want to confuse Liam so they make a sacrifice for their grandchild and gives Phil full custody. Am I close Laura?

      • I like that analogy…or she gets back on her bipolar meds and realizes what a selfish bitch she was and gives Liam to the Hunter’s…Laura will say Tracie take a nap when you are on pain pills…LOL.

  13. Trace And J I’m not arguing that Kim’s redeemable but trying to figure out how the Hunters can cut Kim out of their lives.
    In the scene where Liam’s diaper needs changing Kim did so. At least she knows how but I was surprised. I pictured a full time nanny taking care of Liam.
    In a way I see similar characteristics of entitlement in Megan though Phil would be sure to set her straight.

    • I think he does have a full time nanny. Phil allduded to the full time nanny in the don’t you effing dare scene. Maybe Liam doesn’t have a weekend nanny and that’s when Kim has to step up. Or her sister. Hmmm so you guys think Kim will give up on Phil and meet someone new? So no death nor jail time for the bitch. Darn it.

  14. If Kim is truly unredeemable the situation would call for Liam to be endangered. It takes a lot of evidence and child services would be called in to investigate. It is difficult to sever parental rights. With full custody for the Hunters Kim would still retain visitation rights. On the other side of that coin, Liam could be growing up in a cold home w/o love being shown. He would of course gravitate to Phil and Lina’s loving home.

    Oh to be in Laura’s head! She’s probably laughing at us right about now.

    J you do like historical novels? Jude Deveraux has several books at a good price. I have her Velvet series in hard back but get them from your library. This is an older series. Julie Garwood’s The Bride is also a good price.

    • So that’s why I was saying perhaps neglect yesterday. Remember in the deleted scene, we saw Liam had a dirty diaper and Phil thought it was like that for awhile. But it has to be a lot more than a dirty diaper before a judge sees Kim as an unfit mom. Also Liam cried when he knew Phil was leaving him ( the scene where Kim yells she doesn’t want Lina near Liam). It makes me wonder if Kim just leaves Liam in the crib while she does her thing at home and feeds/ changes him only when he cries. Maybe in her negligence Liam gets hurt and Phil files for full custody?
      Until 3 yrs ago I mainly read only historical romance and fiction so I think I’ve read most of old Jude deverux and Julie garland. I haven’t read their recent contemporaries. Are those good Deighj?

  15. I agree with you J we haven’t seen anything redeemable about Kim so far. That’s where SN comes in, if any redemption is possible for her Laura will make it so.

  16. Tara I’m reading Looking Back on Forever by Kat Alexander, the H is a guitarist who writes music. Good book so far and free in KU. Lengthy book at 400 pages.

  17. Trace I can’t answer that question. I cannot imagine a mother giving up a child except out of love, for a better life for that child. Is Kim, as much as we hate her so totally unredeemable that she feels nothing for her child? Perhaps that’s a way for the Hunters to get full custody. Kim realizing with her workload, and a life that a child doesn’t fit into, the best for Liam would be living with his dad’s family. That would show true growth in her character. Is she so totally evil?

  18. So no New Year’s dancing for you Trace? How do all of you gals celebrate the new year? In the Deep South, it’s always black eye peas and greens with cornbread usually with pork roast. Do any of you collect recipes which is a hobby of mine that I’m slowly giving up?

  19. Okay I have another think question…If the Hunter’s got full custody, would Kim give up her parental rights so that Lina could adopt Liam?

    • I didn’t think about adoption so you are way ahead of me Trace. I only thought about Kim being in Linas life forever and I dont want that for Lina. Let’s say 6 months go by and Phil was the only one dealing with Liam’s drive back and forth from their home to Kim’s house. Then one day he can’t so he asks Lina. Lina goes to drop off Liam and sees Kim. Wouldn’t that ruin her whole day if not a whole week? And god knows what poison Kim will spew. There was a woman who told me once oh don’t talk to her, she’s trash. I thought at the time who says that? But maybe Kim is like this woman. She can say to Lina oh what does Phil see in trash? I don’t care how strong you are, that’ll put you in foul ass mood knowing your husband slept with someone like that. Therefore, I don’t know if Lina can deal with seeing Kim here and there for the next 10 yrs. I’m projecting btw because I couldn’t.

  20. Ahh good that he didn’t chew on the wire. I hope the meds work Ann, trying to cope with everyday life with a pounding head is the pits. Feel better sweetie.

  21. Is your walker a rollator ie a walker with 4 wheels and a seat? If ya gotta use one that’s the way to go. Insurance usually pays for these and can be folded for future use.

    For all you ladies, if your ears were burning Christmas Eve it’s probably because I was talking about you.

    • Ann sorry to hear you are sick sweetie…thank you for asking…I’m doing better everyday….

      Deighj my walker is a standard walker. By the time my home health is up, I should be able to walk again on my own…

  22. Hi Deighj…Therapy is going good and I get more mobile everyday…I’m still on the walker and will be for another week or two…My kids make fun of me and say I carry the walker more than I roll it…Lol

  23. Whoops…..dang you ladies are ‘fast women.’ By the time I wrote my post Ann has reappeared and you’ve all posted again. I do sneak around and read your comments but we have guests so it’s few and far…..

    • Hi Deighj. Yes I’ve got a shit load of crap to put away! Lol. I started with a bad head cold on Christmas Day and now it’s full blown. I have a horrible headache but I’m on medicine now. My head feels like it’s going to explode.
      My husband is outside again with the damn leaf blower going. I can’t stand it. My daughter’s dog has dug up the wire that goes to the lamp post at the end of the driveway. He has no discipline and he is being raised by a teacher!

  24. Good morning to everyone. Trace I do NOT want to contemplate dismantling anything until the day after the New Year. I’m thankful my daughter curbed me before I did as much as I planned. Never heard the rule about kids/grandkids if true I’d be destitute in no time.How is your therapy going, is walking still painful?

    J my husband never bought me or our kids Christmas presents. He didn’t believe in giving gifts on just one day. He would surprise us at least once a month through out the year. I cherish my childhood Christmas memories so I always did Christmas for our kids. The older they got the more expensive those presents became. The odd thing is that the both of them adopted my husband’s attitude towards gift giving once a year.

    Tara congratulations on your son’s accomplishment. It sounds as though he is particularly interested in the performance arts. Though I’m sure this school will make sure he is fully equipped in all aspects. Will he pursue the business minor?

    Laura, Jordan’s gift is so thoughtful. I would love to see a Broadway show. I’ve only been to New York one time but oh the sweet memories! Of all the stories percolating in your mind which will you start with or will you be switching between all of them? On SN have the extra scenes been incorporated, last edits done? Still middle of January for publishing?

    Ann, are you in that chair Trace mentioned dreading Christmas cleanup? Good luck hope you have help because I won’t.

    • Hi Deighj, he will pursue a business minor, it’s an important part of his long term plan. Yes, he’d like a music career, but knows he needs a backup plan that would hopefully include working in the music industry.

  25. I think we are going to see Kim getting some just dues. Jordan and I think Laura said you feel somewhat sorry for her in SN, which means Phil will be the utmost over-the-top ass to her. We all know that Phil can be mean when you push him. Remember the snippet where Kim must have done something to Lina and Phil is sitting there putting on his running shoes and he tells Lina that “she’s gone to far this time” and storms out!

  26. Hi. Interesting. I do think she feels desparate. For sure. Selfish means they don’t regard other people’s feelings. Kim’s feelings come first in everything but she feels love and hate and desperation( not so much despair). Maybe the climactic scene in SN is partly due to Kim’s desperation?

    • I think our interpretation of her actions are that they are psychotic, desperate, immature, etc., but I think in her head she’s just doing what it takes to get what she wants. She doesn’t care how it looks because she’s above it all, in her head. Maybe?

      • Desperate people’s actions are sometimes over the top…Don’t you wonder what her actions are going to be when she realizes Phil is all about Lina, she has no in with Phil, not even with Liam….

        Watching Kim self destruct will be awesome…Lina having a front row seat will be her justice…

        • That’s what makes me think she’ll just give up Liam. She had him as a means to an end. And it failed. As devoted mothers we can’t understand it, but women give up their kids all the time.

          • Yes I agree. Either way hunter’s are getting Liam. I thought about coexisting and I can’t. That may be a realistic ending but not a happily ever after ending. but definitely something big happens and since Kim isn’t going to jail or die she will leave. But what about Kim’s parents and sister?

        • Yess!! I also want Phil to destroy Kim’s self confidence. I hope she goes into a corner and cries for the next 10 yrs.

          • Unless stone can weep I don’t think Kim will cry anytime soon…Lol

            The Hunter’s to end up with full custody, that one big climatic scene is going to be awesome…I can’t see Kim wanting to give up her child support or her connection to Phil…

          • Ok shoot. I forgot about her wanting connection to Phil. Will she fall out of love? Will she concede that she lost?

          • I for one would definitely love a concession…but I see her having the Scarlet O’Hara syndrome….I’ll think about that tomorrow…..

  27. Girls I have a think question… since Kim has a narcissistic personality, do you believe she would try to push Phil into spending time with her and Liam as a family unit? Laura is probably going to come back with a Never! I keep thinking that Kim knows no shame, so why wouldn’t she try to push a family unit on Phil? Phil would be so pissed and never agree to spending anytime with her, but that still doesn’t mean she wouldn’t try…..

    • I see Kim as a button pusher. Look at all her miserable stunts in WPF. I can’t imagine that’s going to stop in SN. It’s not a stretch to think she’s going to use Liam to spend time with Phil or to try to put a wedge between Lina and Phil. Having said that, I don’t think Phil will fall for it and give Kim what she wants.

    • There’s one problem here — they aren’t a family unit. Phil has a family unit and Kim isn’t part of it. NEVER

      • Laura, I love that response!!

        Tara, congratulations to your son. I’m sure you’re so proud of him!

        Sounds like all of you ladies had a great Christmas.

        Regarding bitchy Kim, you know she will continue to try and hurt Lina but it won’t work this time. As Laura said before, Phil and Lina are a united front.

        • Laura I’ve been around selfish people and people that thought a lot of themselves, but do people like Kim feel desperation? You said you knew people like Kim and I was wondering do they have so much self confidence that desperation is not an emotion they experience..

  28. We received an amazing gift on Christmas Eve. My son is a senior at a Catholic prep/high school, with plans to major in music and minor in business in college. He got into an exceptional theater/performing arts BA program for the fall of 2019. In order to even be considered for the program he had to submit a video performing an original piece—he wrote the music and lyrics. The video he submitted was him playing by himself, but he’s arranged it for a full rock band, guitar, bass, drums and harmonies. Can you tell I’m a proud mama?

      • He plays guitar and sings and has a great backstory…

        He’s only been playing for 2 years. Sophomore year, second semester, he had to take a required music class, and he was less than happy with “Intro to Music”. Two weeks into the class he announced he wanted a guitar. The class turned out to be classical guitar class. We kind of ignored him for another 2 weeks, because who honestly thinks that this wasn’t going to be a phase? We give in and order him a decent acoustic from Amazon. And, huh, he sounds great to us.

        He finishes the class in June and asks to take private lessons. So being good parents, we sign him up at a local music school and after one lesson, he’s asked to participate in a summer rock program, and again we’re thinking, huh, maybe he’s pretty good.

        Fast forward to September, Junior year and he goes into school and tells the music teacher her music class changed his life! In October the school hosts a huge college fair. He’s announced to us he wants to major in music. We embark on trying to figure out what this means academically, what does he need to get into a music program. The first thing we find out is he needs a NYSSMA level 5 to apply to colleges and will then need to audition. OMG what the heck is NYSSMA?

        We go back to the private music school and ask for help. Can they get him ready for NYSSMA level 5? Absolutely, and the start gearing him towards competition… the different scales, the required songs. His teacher at the high school signs him up and he competes in May and hits level 5 without an issue. Again, huh, maybe he is good.

        During all of this he’s interning at the music school and taking every available extra class he can and that we can afford… Production, Music Theory, Group Rock classes. He’s absorbing everything like a sponge. And, he starts performing in public. We’re hopping all of this will look good on his college resume.

        Now, it’s Senior year and he starts applying to colleges. This school is particularly hard to get into, you don’t apply to the school, you apply to the program. If you don’t get into the program, you don’t get into the school. And getting into any of their Arts programs includes submitting an original piece and either an interview, portfolio review or an audition.

        Last week he gets a call while he’s at school from the admissions office, he didn’t recognize the number and was in class, so he let it go to voicemail. The message is to please resubmit his college resume, they need to see his performance history and the resume came through corrupted through the common app. That was Thursday, he resubmitted it on Friday morning and his acceptance letter came on Monday—no audition necessary!

        We are beyond shocked. We only know one student that got in on her first try and she had to do a presentation of her art portfolio. Everyone else we know either didn’t get in or did 2 years elsewhere and then reapplied—it’s a small school and only takes 700 applicants each year.

        Sorry about the length, but I so wanted to share!

      • Tara that is amazing I’d be a strutting proud mama too…Lol. Your son is not just good he’s a natural…

        Kbabe it’s a rule your kids get all your love and your grand babies get all your money….My daughter always says I’m not spoiled I was just well taken care of…Lol…I can’t see your daughter ever being a brat, you wouldn’t allow it.

        Ann and Deighj are you girls setting in a swivel chair looking at all those Christmas decorations you have to put back up?

  29. Hi friends, I feel holiday hungover today.
    I really love giving gifts, but I would be fine to not get any in return. I buy everything I want when I want it. Although…I really like the concert/show idea. Buy someone an experience- love it.

    Best gifts- laptop (hubby) and Royal Albert tea set (parents). My in-laws get us Pendleton blankets and nice pens every year, and those are always appreciated too.

    My daughter’s haul was just utterly ridiculous. Her grandparents and aunt/uncle spoil her so much. I’m in a mental tug-of-war over how to handle this part of parenting. I don’t want her to be a spoiled brat, but I don’t really know how to stop the outside influences. Any ideas, my seasoned mothers?

    Janet, I bet that icicle ornament is gorgeous. I really love the Christmas season, even though I try to complain. You don’t love it?

    Happy to hear from all of you.

    • I think your daughter needs to be spoiled! She has a giving heart and that isn’t going anywhere. Shes 4 so she’s fine. With you as her mother I don’t worry about her becoming a brat. My father spoils my daughter rotten. He promised her his car when she turns 16. You know what she said? She wants a used suburu instead becasue she watched a commercial that featured suburu as the safest car. Lol. Maybe your daughter can give away one of her toys she received yesterday along with a few gently used ones to a shelter?
      You are so nice. lol. How pretty can an icicle be? ?. I’m totally fine. We haven’t exchanged gifts since the kids were born. I would be suspicious if he actually gave me something I wanted. It’s all good.

  30. Laura that sounds so fun…I am going to NY one day. I just want to say I’ve been there and done that…..I also want to drive my car through that big redwood tree…Lol….Adele Jr has a big family like you girls have and they either draw names or everyone brings one gift and they play Dirty Santa…

    I got to get ready for Physical Therapy my home health girl is on her way…I’ll check back later….

  31. Good morning! Jordan got me tickets to Dear Evan Hansen (a Broadway show) so I’m going to New York for a weekend soon. I too am not really in to receiving gifts — there are so many people in my family and every few years we say no more gifts, but within two years it’s happening again.

  32. Good Morning Girls…Hailee got me a little weekend getaway with her and Kelly Clarkson concert tickets…My poor husband thought he was going to get to go Bahahaha….Hailee said no dad I’m going with mom….he looked bummed but oh well…..I love doing getaways with her….I wouldn’t be mad either J-Girl. I’m not much for cards, flowers, etc… My husband buys what he wants and I say that’s for whatever occasion….and I do the same….but I expect more out of Phil…Lol

  33. Hope you all had a wonderful day! Anyone get anything good for Christmas? My husband got me an icicle ornament. LOL. He gave me a thin long wrapped box. I thought for sure it was a serpenti watch from bvgalri I told him I wanted but nope it was an ornament. I gotta laugh. Not mad because I’m just happy I don’t have to do this for another year. Good night Ladies!

  34. Laura’s Bowleggers, Merry Christmas to you all and really looking forward to 2019 with SN on our laps. Big hugs and kisses.

  35. Merry Christmas Eve! I hope all of you have a wonderful Christmas with your families. I have family coming to my house tomorrow for dinner along with two great nieces and a great nephew. It’s nice having the little ones.
    Thank you Laura for being you and bringing such great ladies together everyday!
    Love you all!

  36. I’m so on the fence about full custody J-Girl…I want them to get full custody and see them grow as a family, but if not, the reality is that have to learn to exist with Kim in their lives….I think after awhile Kim would be like a bruised heel for Lina, something that’s there but she can live with it…

    Katie your poor back doll, my back kills me after that much wrapping and it takes peeps about three seconds to destroy the paper…you rock sister…

    We have our family brunch in the morning and it will be wild and fun and I can’t wait…I envy you girls with big families and so much going on for days…I love marathons Lol

    • I think Laura hates Kim as much as we do. Probably more since she created her. So I don’t think she wants to see Kim around the Hunters. Could you live with Kim around you without going to jail? I don’t think many of us can. Me, I loved hating on her so much that I hope Laura creates a “Kim” in every novel. LOL

      Have a Merry and safe Christmas! We did some volunteering at the Food Bank today will attend nighttime service. Tomorrow I will have some family over with Pizza, homemade egg rolls from mother-in-law, salad, and chicken katsu and I’m pretty much done. Thank you Jesus!!

      • Your Christmas Eve and Christmas sound so fun. I’d love to the food bank thing with Haley in the upcoming years. Less getting, more giving.
        ??

        • sounds like a good plan Kbabe. So, two pizzerias won’t take my order because they are maxed out on preorders so maybe Chinese is the answer. Have a wonderful day friend!

  37. Cosmos are my go-to drink — love them. I’ve never made an apple martini — that sounds good.
    I did say something about MD law. And you’ll have to wait and see if I was joking!
    BTW it’s great having a child old enough to drive and buy alcohol!

    • Don’t you remember, when you first learned to drive, if your mom needed a loaf of bread you were all over going to the store just so you could drive, then about 6 months in, you were like mama can I go in a minute…You were wore out from running their errands Lol….

  38. I love ice cream even with my fake teeth. I used to make dulce de leche ice cream before the kids. As far as cocktails go i like girly ones. I still like cosmopolitan becasue i love cranberry juice and apple martini. Get it? Red and green!
    Laura, you did say you caught something and you wanted to see if the editor caught it. I understood it as something that is different in MD laws. Also were you joking when Kim being Kim is sad enough? I still believe hunters will get full custody.

  39. Hi everyone, I was up until 2am wrapping, but I persevered. Looking forward to relaxing family happenings the next 36 hours.

    Laura- what about a Cranberry or other red juice margarita? The salt on the rim will make it look like a Santa hat!

  40. Good Christmas Eve morning everyone. My house is full of cookies, cakes and candies. Today Jordan plans to make ice cream because we don’t have enough other sweets in the house. I’m trying to come up with a Christmas cocktail — any ideas?

  41. Good night my ladies, each of you is a gift in my life. As I look back over the past year your friendship is the sweetest gift I’ve received. In the busyness of the season I had forgotten the true reason we celebrate until tonight.

      • Hi girls just finished my PT session with home health went great….I hope you all have a great and wonderful Christmas…Deighj like Laura I couldn’t have said it better what you precious ladies mean to me…..Homemade ice cream is awesome…absolutely perfect with all the cakes and cookies you have Laura….Try banana crunch punch with rum…it will bring out the little drummer boy in ya…Rumma…I don’t know how to spell the rest Lol…

        No court battle huh? J-Girl our wedge trick options keep getting slimmer Lol….

  42. In the meantime, let’s plaster a goofy smile on our faces in memory of Phil getting laid that fateful Christmas Eve during the separation.

    I haven’t started wrapping the room full of stuff to be wrapped. I’m thinking I’ll just stick everyone’s stuff in trash bags with sticker bows stuck all over.

    • There to go Kbabe….Santa Sacks are the bomb…you just have to have the sales pitch to sell them…

      My Phil was getting him some Lina and finding out she hadn’t slept with Nick…Go Team Phil

    • Katie—I made a giant Santa sack out of red fleece when my son was a baby. He was 4 months old I didn’t see the point of wrapping all the gifts that I’d then have to unwrap. I think I was still in nesting mode. I used it the next year too.

  43. I love all of Katie’s boards…You are very talented sweetheart….

    Well girls today was a milestone day…J-Girl was exactly right in that my meds consisted of all types of stool softeners etc….Well the last time I had been to the bathroom (dookie down) was my BD until today…Yay…woohoo….My husband said I’m going to have to give you an enema…I’m like hell no….gentle is no where to be found around my man…He’d shoot that water up my anal canal like he was giving his horse a shot of horse tranquilizer and probably damage my spleen….what would of been left in his wake would of been a new location for people interested in cave diving…not happening I’m just saying…….

    • Guys, is Christmas over yet? Argghh. Tracie, today was a triumph for you- of sorts. You made me laugh but thank god your husband didn’t have to use that torture device. You feeling a tiny bit better?
      I don’t say this often but I don’t think I want to eat for a week. Also who cares if you don’t have a tree? The kids get a gift, mainly you back at home, and that’s more than enough.
      I was reading over the comments and I re read Laura’s description of SN. Love, loyalty, and redemption… is Kim testing Phil’s loyalty to Lina?

      • I think she will J-Girl and I think Kim will also have Lina’s integrity questioned in a court scene or two…I think there will be court proceedings for joint custody after Lina accepts Liam and Kim pisses them off about visitation….I may be wrong, but I think Kim will also try to make Liam an inconvenience for Phil and Lina….but Kim doesn’t expect Lina and Phil to be on the same page…Lina ran once, she’s hopeful she can make her run again….

        • Yes I remember you saying this before. I wonder how they will prove Kim as an unfit mother. You know Lina and Phil will get full custody but how?? I don’t know about MD law but in CA it is so difficult for the husband to get custody of the children.

          • If it’s full custody, I have no idea…Kim wouldn’t neglect Liam…Now I can see Kim getting a new man or a new job where Liam would be an inconvenience and her allowing Phil to be the custodial parent. For Lina and Phil to be given full custody I think it would have to benefit Kim for her to agree, unless she got caught up in some sort of fraud or something like that

  44. Ladies I already won my survivors pool 2 weeks ago. Out of 320 people it came down to 3 of us left. All 3 of our teams lost that Sunday so we split $3200 three ways. In the Survivors pool you pick a team each week to win but you cannot pick the same team more than once.
    I thank you all for pulling for me. The Ravens are my home team all the time.

  45. Dang Trace you’re back!!! A glimpse of sunshine in the never ending cloudy skies. J has kept us going while you were out but it’s so so good to laugh at your crazy antics. I can see both you and Ann gathering up them balls. We’ve missed ya like crazy chica. You sound good, hope not a lot of pain.

    How do you like your picture on Katie’s board? Didn’t she do a fantastic job? I never thought of Laura looking like a young Meg but she does. Katie is one talented lady with a good eye, matching characters up with look alike pictures.

  46. I’m always Yippee over my Deighj and her posts…Hi Ann it’s so hot that you are still in the running..I can see you with a big cigar in your mouth setting around a table telling a couple of men that they are your bitches while they empty their pockets into you purse and then at the last minute you say boys…Your balls too…I’ll carry those in my purse too, until you’re man enough to win them back…..Lol….You go girl….

  47. Ravens won whoohoo you’re still in the running Ann! I should say WE instead of you, we’re in this with you honey child.

    • Good morning girls…we have a saying down south…We always say if we eat to much, that we are as full as a tick…If you think about it that is pretty gross…I might need to quit saying that…Lol. Lina and Phil both will want to stay away from anything that reminds Lina of bad times…I bet Phil only wants good memories going forward…

  48. I used to do a lot of hiking for my job, and I found a tick once on my boob. It left claw marks, but it wasn’t engorged yet. I call that boob my tick titty. I asked my husband if that was hot, and he didn’t think so. ?‍♀️
    Ticks gross me out.

  49. Hey on a funny note, I was picking up some gift cards at the Weis Food store today and stumbled across cards for Fogo de Chao which is the restaurant Phil was going to take Lina before she received Kim’s birthday pictures. I thought that was cool.

    Go Ravens!

  50. Hey girls. My husband did get the tick bite in Maryland. Lone Star ticks have a white dot and are prevalent in mid-Atlantic states and Carolinas. My husband came down with this 8 years ago and at the time none of the allergists or doctors knew what was wrong with him. Symptoms he had came hours after a meal, he broke out in hives, vomiting and tightness of chest and throat. Just by luck he overheard a sales rep talking outside of his office about this red meat allergy he contracted. This man was from Richmond and he had the same symptoms as my husband. From that day on my husband gave up red meat and has been fine. However he accidentally ate red meat last year, thinking it was turkey sausage not pork, and became deathly ill. Eppie pen saved him. You can use Benadryl too. It’s no joke it’s really a serious condition. So Laura if you’re hiking you should wear a hat and check yourself. Maryland is known for this stuff. We have deer in our backyard more now than ever. Tick diseases are really nasty.

  51. Laura I knew you were going to say that about Liam…but thought I’d try Lol…I’ve gone from funk to plain funky….no tree, no nothing…I couldn’t get into the attic to drag it all down and my kids have been so busy didn’t want to bother them….But my daughter did get my presents wrapped….This is Mimi’s Funky Year Lol….

  52. Merry Christmas! I’m sure I’ll say it again but that’s okay. I’m in a funk. I haven’t done anything to decorate and I have football games starting at 4:30 — oh well — there is always tomorrow. When I have time, I will write another scene for Ann and Tara’s bdays!

  53. Good afternoon ladies.
    Thank you all for the birthday wishes.
    Ania, I’m so sorry about your Dad. It’s hard losing a loved one, but he is in heaven.
    Tara, so you’ve also got a birthday coming up and you are the same age as Tracie. I agree, there are a lot of December BDs.
    Laura, did you and Jordan get all of your decorating finished? Also, Go Ravens!
    OK, Katie and Janet, my favorite drinks are Egg Nog for holiday, Chardonnay, and Gin & Tonics are my social drinks.
    We eat a lot of fish and poultry. I do like a steak once in a while. My husband has a red meat allergy (alpha-gal) from a tick bite (Lone Star tick) and can not eat any meat at all or he gets deathly ill.

    My little chihuahua had a siezure this morning and I was freaking out. He’s 16, but this has never happened before. Went to the Vet and he’s on some heart meds now.

    I hope Liam gets some Christmas time with the Hunters and I’m sure he has his own Christmas stocking along with his siblings. At least I hope so. I feel like once Lina takes down the wall and lets her feelings come forth, she will grow to love Liam. He’s an innocent child in all of this.

    You ladies enjoy the day. I know we won’t be talking as much the next few days, but I’m thinking of all of you.

      • Feliz navidad, feliz navidad, feliz navidad prospero año y felicidad! Merry Christmas ? everyone and go ravens! I am thankful that WPF brought all of us together. It’s been meaningful swapping and sharing stories with my new blog friends. Let the fun continue in the New Year. You will be hearing merry Merry’s for the next three days from me.

    • My Boston Terrier started having seizures a few years before he died — nothing ever came of it. They wanted to do a head scan but he was old so I wouldn’t let them. Hard watching our fury friends age.

      Go Ravens!!!

    • Ann — did your husband get the tick in Maryland? That is such a scary thing. I like to hike but during tick season, I really check myself — hate ticks so much.

      • My “narccistic” friend’s mom lives in Roanoke Va. couple summers ago she got deer tick then Lyme disease. Supposedly rare but it happened. Was on antibiotics but she is fine now and not allergic to meat.

        • I can’t tell you how many people I know who have/had Lyme’s disease — very prevalent in Maryland. We have deer everywhere. My sister had it last year — luckily caught it early like your friends mom. The meat allergy I’ve read about.

          • Lyme disease is very prevalent in my area of upstate New York. My husband had it and it was worse than the flu. He had the bullseye rash, so we caught it early. If it’s not diagnosed early, it can be very bad with long term complications.

  54. Merry Christmas to all you Angels…I’m not able to do much, but do what I can…I do like black coffee too with a little creamer Laura…when I’m feeling fancy is when I drink my white chocolate mocha…..yum-a.

    Can’t wait to see if Liam gets to have any Christmas time with the Hunter’s or if Kim is plays the grinch as good as she does the wicked witch! Ugh I can’t stand her……

  55. You have yourself a wonderful Christmas yourself Katie. Your daughter is precious. This story will become a memory that will become precious itself. This weekend is the final countdown to Christmas so most of us won’t be around as. much either.

  56. Hi friends,
    Having a young child is exhausting at Chrismas time. I feel like we’ve been Christmas go-go-going for the whole month. Starting today it really ramps up. So much baking, get-togethers/meals, wrapping, etc. etc. But of course, I’m beyond thankful for all of it. And for all of you!

    Wishing you all a wonderful holiday today, because I won’t be around much until after Christmas.

    Tracie, one bright side to being only a week post-op for Christmas is that you won’t have to lift a finger.
    To everyone else, ????.

    Funny story- my daughter likes to give. It’s a wonderful thing. BUT, she has been trying to give away her precious toys all month. I’m talking American Girl and LOL dolls. Brand new ones. Eeek. She hasn’t learned the art of re-gifting…giving away stuff that you DON’T want. So, today I’m having her wrap all of these precious items and just pretending to give them away. I hope it works.

    Love to you all.

  57. Trace glad you feel well enough to check in. You sound much better though no rockin around the Christmas tree for you this year.

  58. I’m not a big meat eater either. I love eggplant. When J-Cat hosts us for dinner, we know what to request for the menu.
    I love eggnog.
    I don’t love that you’re talking shit on Mochas, Laura.

    • You know I just live in a normal house right? I rather visit Ann and she can give us a tour of the places where Phil and Lina hang out. Imagine staying the hotel where Lina slapped Kim! I would pay for that. Haha. But yes you all are welcome and I can make us eggplant orzo salad. Odd that we all love eggplant. It’s so underrated. I love mushy veggies.

  59. Eggplant is my favorite food too! Holiday drink. Spiked eggnog. I like the same drinks as Tracie except I like my coffee to taste like coffee, not hot chocolate

    • Lina likes Chard wine, gin and tonic. Probably a Pumkin Spice Latte….I bet Phil know…. I like Cab wine, margaritas, vodka and tonic with limes….Favorite coffee is a white chocolate mocha…Yum

    • Didn’t Phil get Lina a chocolate croissant and a latte? I like plain coffee with milk only. No sugar. Everyone’s drinking oat milk in their coffee now. It was weird. I rather just eat a bowl of oatmeal. I don’t know any holiday alcoholic drinks. I drink whatever people give me. Lately though I love korean fermented rice wine. It tastes like carbonated rice sake. People say it smells like old socks. Lol

    • I like Riesling and skinny margaritas. I’m not a big drinker, honestly.
      Today I had a peppermint mocha, my favorite holiday drink. Usually with almond milk. I don’t get oat milk but I am a big fan of non-dairy milks.
      We did leftovers as an early dinner. Italian. I had eggplant Parmesan stuffed between two pieces of cheese pizza. It was super yummy.
      Tomorrow is our big baking day. Woot.

      • Eggplant is my favorite food period. I’m not a regular meat eater so we eat a lot eggplant. I never get sick of that. Now cookies, I love everything. Tell us what you are baking. So exciting.

  60. I’m awake again, I’m telling you girls they have me on nerve meds. Blood thinners. Muscle relaxers, nausea control and pain pills and they all say may cause drowsiness, May my ass I’m unconscious 85 percent of the day…Geez…I don’t think you can compare my Phil to anyone he’s just to yummy!!!

    • Sleep, eat, sleep then repeat. My mother in law told me if you can sleep, eat, and poop you are fine. Are the meds making you constipated? I hate Vicodin because of that. Sorry TMI but I’m sure one do the pills is a stool sofetener. ? poor Tracie. Hang in there Ms T

  61. Is Phil more like Richard Gere or Olivier Martinez? Was watching unfaithful and I think Diane lane can be Lina in face only. Diane is more voluptuous but man she is beautiful. Richard gere with go eat shit attitude can be Phil. Olivier is too pretty. Maybe he can be the lawyer from tony prossi’s firm. He has pouty lips and sulks. Lol

    • neither! I do like Richard Gere though! Olivier Martinez not so much — he is unique looking so I get his appeal. I agree on Diane Lane — effortless beauty!

  62. There’s Ms T! Did they cut down the pain medication? It’s a wonder you are walking already. I agree about the editor. Being sick is no excuse. Lol Honest to god she should be paying Laura to read the book before anyone other than Jordan. Get better soon! I love hospital and airline food. I would hoard the jello and puddings there. Eat everything Tracie and take emergency so you don’t catch what’s gong around there.

    Katie I have lafco. I like their camomile lavender hand soaps. Deighj has too many rec’s now. I say just go to bath and bodyworks and get a dozen and the whole house will smell like a fake garden. Nothing wrong with their Fresh Balsam scent

    • J-Girl I’ve been at home since the 19th…They released me the very next day…I honestly came back from recovery and they had me walking within 20 minutes…..

  63. Good afternoon girls/..I’m awake….My sympathy goes out to you girls….My mama once told me that when she died it would break my heart, but when my daddy died it would be even harder on me, because that is the only man other than the Lord that would love me unconditionally….She was right…..

    Happy Birthday Ann, I don’t know how old I am half the time either….I just tell peeps, it’s because my estrogen levels are dropping.
    Post-it’s are my friend…Lol

    Today my pain is more like a burning sensation and the first few steps are horrendous, but then I kick it into overdrive and can do a pretty good pace…. I should be smooth rolling like Phil’s M6 next week….

    One more thing the Editor has had my Luscious Manmal within her grasp for a week and she hasn’t read it? Does she dress like a scarecrow? You would have to have no brain not to attach yourself to that manuscript like Velcro! I’m just saying….

    • Tracie—you’re doing fantastic! The fact that you’re up and moving and can kick it into overdrive is amazing. My job takes me into NYC a few times a month. Yesterday was one of those days and I had to do a lot of walking in dress boots, leaving me with blisters on both heels. I’ve spent today whining about them and you’re up and moving on a new hip!

      You’re mom is right about losing your dad. Mine has been gone for 6 years and thinking about him can still send me into a crying jag.

      And I agree, I can’t believe the editor has had that book and hadn’t started editing. Doesn’t she know there are fan girls desperately waiting for it’s release??

  64. Happy birthday Ann, I’m following Jgirl in that you’ll always be Ann to me. Perhaps you can help Laura in not feeling so odd, maybe a just-for-you scene about the Hunters. Of course that would be after she and Jordan get the tree up and gifts wrapped.

    Dang I can already feel that hand slap Laura’s gonna give me. Love you Laura lolz!

    • Yessssss! Lol. Double hand slap. Maybe Laura doesn’t have to write a new one but a snippet of a deleted scene from WPF or SN??

  65. Oh Ann I’m so sorry for your pain. There is nothing that can fill the space your aunt occupied in life. I know from experience that time is a great healer. Talking, telling stories and laughing about my loved one’s helped a great deal. We still share stories about my husband and I laugh until I have tears running down my face.

    I don’t mean to make this about me and what I shared will not lessen your pain now but celebrating her life will. My heart is with you.

  66. J, Katie thanks for the recommendations. I found Ellis Brooklyn Pseudonym at Sephora. I need to check if JC Penney’s has a Sephora. If so I can buy it and bring home w/o waiting. I also found Modern Alchemy daffodil at Neiman Marcus but sold out. I’ll try Pseudonym first and see how it goes. I don’t have a living room but a ‘great room’ 2 stories high that takes up 1/2 of the house. It’s divided into different areas so it’s difficult finding a scent that doesn’t dissipate. I’m hoping if I get several that it will fragrance the entire room. I going to wait until the before and after Christmas crush is over.

    P.S. I’m feeling guilty about posting on things not related to SN. But I think everything has been said and done, I just like chatting with all of you about life and the issues we all face. Laura if we’re going to far afield please let us know. January is so far away right now.

    • Me too about guilt but Tracie is usually the one with her left field questions. You and I were stuck on what is more Phil? Laura answered more than one night and that shut both of us up. Lol. I’m dying to know Phil’s thoughts. How he sees Lina. What he thought when they first meet. Etc. I need to understand this guy. Anyway I’m burning jo Malone’s peony’s & blush candle right now and it has good staying power. For the size of your living room I think you may need a big one. I splurge on the biggest size candles and the scent covers pretty much the whole house. I’ll look into katie’s brand

      • Almost another month J but it will be perfection once in our greedy little hands. Just getting a look into Phil’s thought processes will be heavenly.

        Going to look for the Jo Malone now. I’ll check back later this evening to see if our Trace checked in. I would like to know if she’s going to be released before Christmas. I think she told us she would be home but that could change. She sounded so tired and in pain.

  67. Bless her heart -thinking of you and wishing you peace.
    I know how you feel, two months ago my dad went to heaven.

    It’s cool You are 64 -Happy Birthday Ann !?

  68. Ann, I am so very sorry. Your Aunt had a nice, long life, with love surrounding her in the end- that’s all we can hope for.

    You slipped, your name is Laurie.
    Happy Birthday, L-Cat!

    Yes, excessive cleaning is done. Now, onto excessive wrapping.

    ???

      • Happy birthday Ann. You are not Laurie to me. Everything sounds trite in times like this but I’m glad you are here with us and sorry for your loss.

        Tracie, when will you be released from the hospital? The nurses must be coming in every hour so you probably can’t rest at all. Hope you will be home and comfortable for Christmas.

        My husband comes home today too and extended family duty gatherings starts tomorrow. It’s the same ol’ every year. So I will be refreshing when I can but probably won’t post as often. Have a great weekend everyone!

  69. Hi Girls. My aunt passed late last evening. Once I got the call I was relieved and sad, and then I just couldn’t sleep. She would have been 96 in January. I’m so glad she is at peace and not suffering. I thank all of you for your kind words and hugs. You ladies are the best.
    Well, I turned 64 today girls. Funny thing is I thought I was going to be 65! Back in October I was asking my husband questions about signing up for medicare soon and he said Laurie, you’re only 63! I was like, Jesus, Mary and Joseph! We were laughing about this again today.
    Tracie, hang in there girl, each day will get better.
    Deighj, I always pronounced your name Deege. We had an Ollie’s store in our area. I thought it was a dump but my husband loves to go in stores like that for some reason and just look. Can’t figure out why. My cousin owns a beautiful home and she bought a nice area rug from Ollies, which I could not believe. The rug was nice. She says you can find bargains there.
    Katie, did you get all your cleaning finished?
    Janet, so this is not your name either! That’s funny.
    Ania, Hope you’re doing well.
    Laura, I think this Ravens game will be great. I love it when the Ravens are the underdogs! Have fun decorating with Jordan. Enjoy your time together.
    Hunters – Where are you people! We miss you!

  70. Trace what are you doing awake at 1:00 in the morning? In hospital ya know they’re gonna wake you up before sunrise. And at 5’2” I could pick your little butt up and carry you around. And you call us doll when that’s what you are. Your personality out weighs you. We all miss you and don’t laugh nearly as much. Is the pain abating at all?

  71. Good morning ladies!
    It’s 60 and raining. I think I’ve neglected to answer a couple of questions.
    Deighj — It couldn’t hurt to update your review — thanks. Once I receive the novel back from the editor, I’ll know the exact release date and put it on Amazon. In my head I’ve always pronounced your name Dee — I’m happy you corrected me.
    Ania — I tried to bring the Prossi’s into Swimming Naked but it didn’t work. I’m not sure why but they are definitely in different worlds. Maybe there was just too much testosterone. LOL I too love lawyer stories.
    Tracie — Glad to have you back. You sounded like your wonderful self in the last post!
    Ann — I hope you’re not too stressed. I’m praying for you and your aunt.
    J and K — I love your recommendations!

    Jordan comes home tonight — still haven’t decorated for Christmas. The Ravens have a big game Saturday night, so we’ll have to go out early to get a tree. I spent last night wrapping gifts. It feels odd not to be in the Hunter’s world.

  72. I’m awake girls that hasn’t happened much today….I’m walking better and missing talking with you….Ann so sorry about your aunt doll….Deighj love you much sugar….J and K when they brought me my walker I told the lady my friends J and K would be appalled that I’m cruising these halls in Your basic gray walker…They would have me on pearl white one with black pen striping….she just laughed and said well we aren’t as uptown as J and K…

    Laura hope all is well with you too doll….

  73. J that was funny, does your MIL realize you know this, what about gift cards? Someone told me several years ago about a guy who washed his underwear in his dishwasher.

    • Bahaha and ewwwwwww. I never heard that one before. That’s one clean underwear.
      I know of affordable brands that smell good. I’m a candle connoisseur. Ha. Modern alchemy. I like their daffodil and vanilla. Also Nest has good staying power but I think their diffusers are more popular. If you want to go high end I love Diptyque’s Musk or violet or Baies but they are around $60. But if it makes you happy then get it.

  74. Katie that was an LOL moment for sure. Have you ever received a gift that left you speechless, grasping for any stray censored words? Haven’t we all?

    Do any of you know of fragranced candles that really work? I’ve bought name brand as well as artisan candles but the fragrance is so slight that I’ve given up and use diffusers. But I love burning candles, they make a room feel cozy.

  75. J Ollie’s is a discounted discount store. My daughter was looking for a specific brand of paint that someone told her they saw there. The never again is because I don’t like stores such as that. It’s a last stop for the merchandise before tossing. She opened the paint and it was fine. The cans were dented in several places so perhaps that’s why it was discounted.The new posted picture of Katie looks exactly like Leelee to me. Though there is something about the picture that is reminiscent of Meryl.

    Ania I remember since you reminded me that you did say you were living in London. Thank you ever so much for the links to Wroclaw. Loved the dwarfs and the story behind them. Dissidents changing the entire culture of their city. Remarkable and a great marketing ploy as well. I learned something about your city I’ll never forget. Thank you. I’ve always loved dwarfs, collected every one of the seven dwarfs I could find. They were about 2 feet high and I placed them in different rooms around my plants. Over the years they were broken and I was left with just one. I finally gave it to my sister because we’re spending less time in Florida. I now wish I’d brought it back with me.

    • I love you deighj. I know you don’t watch SNL but your dwarf story can be one of their skits. I get it. I used to collect frames and teacups. I don’t know why since I don’t even like taking pictures and most of the frames just had original pictures in them but they are so pretty you know? Maybe you and I are hoarders??
      Now my sister is talking crazy and saying we need a family crest jewelry. She’s saying half hawk/half lion but the picture she sent me looks like a flying lobster. She wants to get this flying lobster made and make everyone wear it. Lord!!
      I need alcohol. Good night everyone.

    • You got me Deighj at 5’2” I could be considered a dwarf…in fact at the hospital they brought out my walker and I said that looks like a kid walker, they said it is but it will adjust to 5’2”….Lol

    • Lol. I’m giving a diffuser and a candle to my mother in law with some cash. She will never use the candle, regift the diffuser, and probably stash the cash in the dishwasher she never uses. I swear I opened it once and saw a bag of cash in there. I never really shop for her. That was funny.

  76. Ann — Happy to hear you have good friends looking out for you. It sounds like your aunt isn’t in pain, which is nice. It’s hard to watch though, I know. Hopefully she will just slip away peacefully — sounds like it.
    Tracie — Phil is aware of other men noticing Lina.
    All — thanks for your kind words about Jordan! I spoke briefly to the editor a couple of days ago. She said she should have it back to me by January 6th — she’s been sick so she hadn’t started. Hopefully, I can turn it around in less than two weeks. Keep your fingers crossed.

  77. Hi girls. Busy day. I’ve been over to the nursing home to see my aunt this afternoon. Her oxygen was increased and her blood pressure is low which is not good. My aunt hasn’t spoken in a week because her poor body is just physically done. My sister met me there and we just talked to her and told her how much we loved her and to not be afraid. I told her my mom was waiting for her. I just pray she goes off in her sleep.
    My girlfriends took me out to dinner tonight. It’s just what I needed. This group of ladies are awesome. The four of us met through our daughters’ Girl Scout troop 25 years ago and we meet every month for dinner, wine tasting, and more. Our troop leader was just like the Beverly Hills scout leader. Lol. She actually had a blue tarp on the floor of the cabins that our girls slept in so the bugs couldn’t come through.
    I just want to thank you girls for all your thoughts and hugs regarding my aunt. You ladies are so sweet.
    Congratulations Jordan, what an accomplishment. Laura I’m sure you are one proud mom!
    Tracie I’m thinking of you and hope you get better soon!
    So any news on the Hunters? How much longer do you think the editor will be reviewing?

    • I’m so sorry Ann. I held my grandmas hand as she passed away this way. You and your sister said it best. Her sister is waiting for your aunt.

  78. Girls your sweet comments are so encouraging thank you dolls so much. My name is Tracie Lol and I don’t care if you Angels use fake names, your characters are what counts and I Love you all…

    Laura in SN does Phil notice men looking at Lina? I loved that when he said I don’t like men looking at you. That was so hot…

    I’m so sleepy sweet girls, going to have to nose dive into my pillow…

  79. Big Hug to everyone especially to Tracie & Ann!

    Laura, I like your way of thinking- that’s my perfect story (lawyers books are my are my favourites). Have you thought about mixing two worlds (Hunters & Prossis)?
    & wow Congratulations to the proud mama !!!

    Janet – Your mama is an Angel 🙂

    Katie -You did a great job!

    deighj – Thank you for your sweet comment (and I am not sure about that).
    On my very first post I have mentioned that since 2005 I live in England. Although, I have been learning English since high school – now 38 and I am still in the process of learning…
    As for my hometown – i don’t actually have such pictures
    https://www.europeanbestdestinations.com/destinations/wroclaw/
    https://www.journeywonders.com/wroclaw-dwarf-location-guide/

    Atlanta! I have visited this city twice and great both times – I am intrigued -what are the places you love to visit in Atlanta?

    Good Night x
    Love
    Ania

    P.S.
    Tracie – I am hugging you so tight that I can hear your heart thumping !

  80. Deighj- lots of lols
    Tracie- I’m sorry you’re in so much pain. I was worried about that- once the adranaline wears off.
    J-Cat- I always seem to be the one taking pictures. Don’t have many. So I took a selfie for you after my shower today- don’t worry, it’s PG! I’ll post it on the Pinterest as not to bug Laura.

    • Yay! Didn’t want to bug anyone either but it’ll be good to place aliases with actual faces. Lol. Pretty soon the board can be -do we really look like these stars? Lol. Laura, for sure looks like meg Ryan though.

      • Kbabe’s picture is up! You are a dead ringer for half Meryl and half leelee. Natural beauty! Even your hair is Meryl. Maybe a love child between the two if that was possible. Lol

  81. Where are you Ann, how is your aunt? Better I hope.

    Just an errant thought, it would be funny if we all met up. We would be calling each other by our aliases and being ignored because that wouldn’t be our real names. But Laura is Laura, Katie is Katie, I’m deighj, now I wonder about Trace.

    Cold rainy day here in Georgia, nothing new in that, we haven’t seen the sun but twice in the last two months. Ideal for nap time. Later my ladies.

  82. Katie if someone called me by my given name I would think they were speaking to someone else. I’ve been deighj since my late teens and that’s who I am. I have posted reviews and there I use one of my alternate personalities but that’s the only time.

  83. Yo Katie, J, I had to look up ‘catfishing’ though I’ve seen the term. I figured it was shady but didn’t know what was being shaded. Thanks for edumacating me.

    Trace you haven’t any idea how much you’re missed. I am so sorry about the pain. My daughter talked me into going to lunch and then shopping at Ollie’s. Never again. I wandered around, finally found a chair and parked. I’ve been worried about you and when another lady joined me I found myself telling her about you and what you’ve gone through which lead me to telling the entire story about the blog. I mentioned before what happens when deprived of adult convo. Lordy I bet that lady checks out who she sits beside next time. Our thoughts are with you my friend.

    • LOL. Sometimes it’s easier to tell a stranger than someone you know. I wouldn’t be surprised if she looks up this blog. Lol. Why do you say never again? Bc of the Christmas crowd? Are you completely done with your shopping?

      Laura. I’m so curious. Does your new editor keep you posted on what she thinks of your book so far? Or how far she’s read, what she thinks of the characters, etc? Do you think it’ll be published middle, or end of January?

      There was a really scary one on catfishing. It involved a weekend hook up with a NBA basketball player and he was fired from his team at one point and his career was destroyed. I couldn’t believe what I was watching including pro athletes hooking up with internet groupies. Bizarre.

  84. Congratulations Jordan on your acceptance letter. You’ve earned every letter you receive. Laura is one proud mama.

  85. The PT lady told me today would be bad and it is. I’m extremely sore and it hurts bad to walk but I’m doing it and I’m so tired…They have me on so much medicine I feel like a walking pharmacy…

  86. Hi girls, Jordan we are so proud of you. There will be multiple offers you are so smart and driven.

    Today has been a bad day, but I’m marching on..:wanted to check in:…

  87. Jordan received her first Medical School / Phd acceptance last night! A New York school, of course. I’m sure there will be more but it is now official — great Christmas present! too proud not to share

  88. Janet, Laura sent me your photo…you are the cutest ever! I wasn’t that far off with the k-drama actress. Damn, I’m good.

    • You actually look a lot like another actress from that show. I updated your Pinterest photo. She’s younger than you, I think. 40. You’re welcome.

      • Glad you aren’t mad! I don’t watch any k drama but I will ask my sisters. I don’t think I look anything like her-this girl has hair!! Lol

          • Lol. I actually know what a catfish is too. Watched 20/20. Lol. Janet is my sisters name and my name is only couple letters off. So j- janet is fine! I actually thought Branchflower was an alias too. So pretty.

  89. Anybody home?
    Ms. T is probably in PT right now. Let us know how you’re doing Trace. How many feet did you walk today, have you seen your Pinterest picture Katie created?

  90. Katie thank you, that picture you gave me is flattering, just what my ego needed. Whoever that model is she’s beautiful. Thinking I might consider plastic surgery with this picture as my goal.

    BTW, deighj is a nickname I’ve gone by for years. A funny story (to me) is my daughter calls me whenever she leaves wherever she is at night at a preset time. She failed to call last week and when I texted her, she didn’t give me her ‘safe’ word. So I ask her what my given name was and she texted deighj —- —- deighj is not my given name. She admitted when she got home that she didn’t know my name. Dang my own child.

    You are truly gifted I would never have thought of Laura resembling Meg but she does!

    As for J that hair style is just the way I pictured her, stylish, even gardening. I just don’t see her with long hair. J has life going on and just too busy to stand in front of a mirror trying to fix. The same could be said of both of you with kids in school.

    And Raquel for Trace. She’s one of the most beautiful women this world has ever seen. I wonder if her sense of humor would be on a par with Trace’s so dang funny personality.

    Ann I am so sorry about your aunt. It’s heartbreaking to watch someone you love suffer and feel helpless.

    I have as usual shared TMI, that’s whatcha get from someone deprived of adult conversation. But I’m calling this day done and headed to bed. You girls have a lovely evening.

  91. I thought this was a blog based on truth. You’re all a bunch of fibbers! My name is Katie, and I didn’t even think to lie to y’all.

    Off to my daughter’s Christmas play.
    ??

    • Sorry.? I didn’t think I would be posting more than once. That made laugh. I think 2 friends still read this blog and can’t believe the hermit is still posting. Barrett was one of my best mom friend posting under my account when we were out together. I won’t lie anymore. There’s nothing else. I’ll try and find a recent pic of me to make it up. That picture of me on Pinterest is a k drama actress. My sister saw it and told me.

      • Lies!!!
        No, but I understand. My generation and younger are much more comfortable with sharing online. I don’t blame you.

        • Honest to god because we are old and paranoid. I didn’t realize we were all using aliases though. That is weird! Hope I don’t get in trouble….
          how was the party?
          Tracie, hope you are sleeping and can post tomorrow.

  92. Hey girls! It seems like a lot of discussion going on. I’ve been out all day. Did some shopping. My elderly Aunt that is in the nursing home has pneumonia. I don’t think she’s going to bounce back from this. She’s stable and comfortable but she hasn’t spoken in a week. She has been on antibiotics for a week but they’re not working. I’m going along with her medical directive which states no aggressive medical treatment. The nurse practitioner that I’m working with is fantastic. It is tough when you are in charge of someone’s medical care.
    Tracie I hope you’re doing well girl! Janet you are second in command of this group!
    Katie as far as what we look like, I am on Facebook, but I must confess that I usually go by my first name which is not Ann. I started using Ann my middle name on all my amazon reviews and blogs.
    I’m so excited to read SN. Once I have it to read I already plan to just hibernate the entire day. I’ll start off with coffee in the morning and by afternoon I’ll hit up the wine and just embrace the Hunters.

    • Shoot. I’m so sorry Ann. That is so tough. My mother in law had pneumonia last May and was hospitalized for couple of weeks and it was hard on us all. I hope everything will be ok. Swimming Naked truly will be our Christmas gift to us all.

      P.s. janet really isn’t my name either. Sorry. I told Laura.

    • I’m sorry Ann. Unfortunately, I know how you’re feeling. It’s so tough and a hard time of year for this. Thoughts are with you.

  93. Thanks Katie. I don’t share on any media platform, heck I’m not on any platform at all and if I were it wouldn’t be under my name. Being on this blog is a first for me.

  94. Oh Katie I really love Laura’s idea of using just your sense of what we look like from our sharing individual stories. Closing your eyes and thinking of what you’ve learned about us from our comments and using that to find your pictures. Words paint pictures.

    Laura anything you write we’ll read. You could make a box of salt interesting. Whatever you write will be read.

  95. Ok since I feel like I’d end up being the only one (over-) sharing on our secret Pinterest, I won’t ask that of you. BUT, the opportunity is too good not to make a Pinterest board of what I think you all look like. I’m doing that tonight.

    • Are you serious? You know there aren’t many short Asian people on Pinterest. I don’t look like anyone from crazy rich Asians nor do I look like Margaret cho(love her) and those are the only ones I know on tv. It’ll be interesting..

  96. Ms.T so happy you checked in and we can see that you’re okay. You are a warrior and you’ll fight through this. I admire your determination. Just know we’re here waiting for you to post whenever you’re up to doing so.

    J when I called you a firecracker it was in admiration. When you have a strong opinion about something you stand firm in your belief but do concede when a valid point is made. But I think that opinion would be fiercely defended until then. BTW I have noted that you are an observer, you point out things I’ve missed. As for my name it’s a derivative of a nickname from when I was young and a bit wild. It is pronounced as
    De-ja.

    Katie Meryl is a gorgeous woman, her warmth comes through whatever role she plays. So you must be gorgeous as well. Our Laura has a good eye as do you. Pinterest sent a board on ‘When I Saw You’ last week. I slobbered on Joseph.

    Laura the description for SN couldn’t be better. I have thought of asking you if we might update reviews to let readers know that SN will be out in a few weeks.

  97. I’m fantasizing about a new story. A lawyer at Tony Prossi’s law firm that falls in lust with one of their interns — like a 35 yr. old partner falling for a 23 year old. Katie will love that. I can imagine Tony not liking it. The girl will be the daughter of some important client

  98. Pictures can’t be shared in the comment section unless it’s a link to a picture. I tried to share one of Chandler a while back and it wouldn’t let me. I’m sure we all have different images of each other in our minds — kind of like the images of the characters in a novel.

  99. I wish there was some way we could privately share photos in here. I need visuals of you girls, and of some the things we talk about. Although for now, Laura told me I look like a young Meryl Streep yesterday, and I totally agree.
    Any ideas for how to share?

    • Hmmm. I don’t do any type of social media anymore. I did put up a profile pic on my gmail address. Laura probably can see and i don’t care if she shares that image. But I have my sunglasses on and it was taken a couple years ago. I think you are curious if I wear pink slippers and have big hair. Nope. Meryl Streep?! Stunning!! She does look like leelee. You better look like my expectations. Lol. And Tracie with her Raquel and Deighj with her supermodel looks. Lord. Maybe it’s bette for us to imagine?

    • Laura, have you considered a private Facebook page for your blogging group. It wouldn’t be public and then pretty much anything can be posted. I hate to admit how many times I’ve wanted to hit like on a post—LOL.

  100. Thoughts for Swimming Naked’s description…
    Is their love powerful enough? Lina and Phil Hunter have been together since they were teenagers. Twenty-five years later, they have successful careers, three teenage children and a beautiful home. Phil also has a baby with another woman, the by-product of a four-month affair. This is a story of second chances, loyalty and redemption as the Hunters struggle to move past the betrayal that shook the foundation of their family. While this is a standalone novel, the Hunter’s journey began in A White Picket Fence.

  101. Hi my sisters…Super busy this morning with PT and Occupational Therapy…I’m as sore as a boil…Thank you so much girls for your well wishes and I love you girls too…Laura I’ve read my BD scene over and over Lol. It’s so hot..I’d be his Jack in a NY second and he could be my beanstalk…LOL..

    My pain pills are kicking in and these keys look like they a melted crayon……I got to go check my eyelids they may have leaks..

  102. Morning J and no I don’t think anywhere can handle two Tracies. So if Trace is funny and I’m wise do you know what I think of you as being? A FIRECRACKER! At my almost 5’ 10” that’s what you are a little short firecracker with a kind heart. You might be a shortie but you take no guff from anyone. I’m the tallest in my family and grew up wishing I could be so. In dance class I was paired with the tallest guy with the most atrocious breath ever. And he could’ve laid his head on my shoulder. That’s when I wished the hardest.

    My favorite stores use to be Lord and Taylor or Nordstrom but I have so many clothes that I no longer wear and have no wish to that I don’t even look anymore. I want comfortable clothing now and not necessarily high end. More than clothing I was a jewelry, fragrance and shoe addict.

    As always the above is TMI I am a master of rambling on and on and…
    hope your day is a happy one my little firecracker.

    • You crack me up. He probably was puffing his dragon breath on your throat. Yuck. Lol. I’m no firecracker. I wish. I’m more of an observer but I am kind. Thanks Deighj. You are a good person. I really really want to ask you this. What does your name mean? So unique and I always wondered…

  103. K, we have too many daisos. Do you know how many animal wide outs we have? Ugh! Also I mistype my email address a lot.
    I do 90 percent of my shopping online. Guys, what are your favorite stores to shop from other than amazon?

    • Let’s see
      Online…overstock.com sometimes, Sephora
      Clothes- I rarely buy clothes anymore, but I love Anthropologie, Zara, Target, TJ Maxx…my professional clothes were Theory, Elie Tahari, BCBG Max Azria, and Stella McCartney for really high end. Joe’s Jeans are my favorite. Shoes from Amazon. (My best unkept secret- you can get great deals on really nice shoes on Amazon. Especially when you have a size 6 foot).
      Hmmm what else- for house stuff, Home Goods, pier1, world market, pottery barn, restoration hardware, Curated Home (local)
      For cooking, I like gourmet salt, olive oil, etc….tj maxx has random finds, and we have this ghetto store called Grocery Outlet that gets the best random gourmet stuff. World Market. And a local shop Baker & Olive.
      Kohl’s and Walmart sometimes.
      Sorry you asked?

      • Oh and ikea for some home stuff.
        I also really like thrift stores for handmade stuff (knitted blankets, etc.) and books.
        When I’m working on a project, I’ll use 10 stores to get exactly what I want.

        • Wowza. Yes I asked. I do like ghetto grocery places too. But to me they just mean organized chaos ethnic type of places compared to Whole Foods type of stores. Ok what the what. 10 stores to get 1 project finished? I forget what you told us. Wish you can post pic here too. I did take wood workshop once with my cousin and made a terrible looking dining room table. She took it and continued her classes. I stopped. I used to love RH. Still love RH teen but I will try not shop at RH anymore. Easier said than done since they are amazon or furniture store. Hate hate my cloud chairs. Hate my marble table from them with sealant peeling everywhere. And hate the way they treat their workers even more. You know the drivers have to pay for their own RH T-shirt’s? $30! And those white gloves and foot slip ons too. No medical insurance for them either. I hope Bernie does another expose on a company and this time restoration hardware! Sorry for my rant but a driver was kinda distraught few weeks ago when I asked him to wear feet covers.

          • Thanks for telling me that — I like to know. The last two items I’ve bought — couch and two chair had to be repaired — they were good about sending someone out but still. Speaking of the way companies treat employees, I’m always trying to boycott Amazon — unfortunately they are too convenient

          • For like a house project, a room redo- 10 stores…some things new, some old, some nice, some cheap. And I never seem to buy a whole outfit from one place. Nothing I say or do seems to make sense…I’m all over the place.
            Are the RH drivers part-time? Or maybe they’re contractors? That could explain the insurance and shirts.

          • No they work full time over 12-16 hours a day. Finally one guy sued so they can’t deliver past 8pm. They missed the first delivery date so when they came the second time the head driver apologized. I asked if they changed their hours and he proceeded to tell me everything including how they pay for their own gloves and ft covers. I said are you lying right now? By the time the delivery men clock out from their hub and get home it’s midnight. Then they have to be back at the hub by 4am to start the day. He told me they get 50 percent off on items but the company makes them pay for everything. I made a formal complaint to the headquarters and told my neighbor to do the same. I know they don’t care but it’s ridiculous to open a 90.000 sq ft “shop” with reso only restaurant yet they treat their works this way.

    • Wow! Deighj is posting at night! You are special Tracie. Lol. You don’t want to be the wise one? But you are! And you make me laugh every time you say scorched earth- you are one of a kind. So is Tracie but can we handle two of her on this blog?

  104. I love you Trace!!! I want to hear from you in the morning after you read your post of tonight. I am absolutely amazed they have you up and walking already.

  105. One Ring a dingy two ring a dingy…anybody there..? My happy shot put me in a happy place…I thing the sign said I’m in Fogsville, population 1 me…Bahahaha that made me laugh, I just came up with that!! So where do I start, same table this time girls, but they knocked me out so fast I didn’t get much time for visitation. I received the gold star patient kudos from the PT staff today…I walked 96’ my first time and the second 115’, closes hip to me was 36’…Girl Power..Me and two other men are hips, they are late 50’s early 60’s…So this one guy while we were in group PT this morning, his wife does not like him…I said dude why did you wife in class yesterday try and see if she could ship you off to rehab? He said she is a selfish bitch…I was like well tell her that purple blob she had put in her hair makes her look like Barney..All three of us busted out laughing….She is such a narcissistic ass…So I was going to get up and the aid was rushing me, so I asked her if she was on work release program and had to get back by bed check…I can’t type no more, my boobs itch….see ya love ya bye…

  106. Finished All of Me by AL Jackson today between cleaning sessions. I liked it! Kind of a suspense-romance, if that’s a thing. It would’ve been better with an age gap. ?

    • Ok I need to finish that as well as finish Mr masters. I’m in a weird funk and haven’t finished any of the books I’ve started. Almost done with the book I’m reading with my kids for school though so that’s something.
      Oh and I got a Christina Lauren on a loan from the library today.

        • That’s the one I got from
          The library! Love and other words. Waited weeks for it but other than Laura’s books I won’t pay that much for romance. I always borrow Colleen Hoover and JD Robb from the library.

  107. Deighj that was a sweet post to all of us!
    I guess our thoughts are all on Tracie today. Hope she’s ok.
    Laura did you go any place special for lunch today! I love Annapolis. I’m about 20 minutes from there.
    Today I met up with about 20 people I used to work with at BWI, all retired. We all met up at the VFW in Severna Park. High dollar lunch ladies. Lol. we had more laughs. This group were top executives who ran the airport back in the day but they love the VFW!

  108. Hey my friends. When can we expect to hear from Trace, this evening?

    Trace I didn’t forget your birthday I thought of you and the promised BD scene. You have been much on my mind. I loved that even with teenagers Phil and Lina haven’t allowed their sexual connection to get lost. I wish Adele would lighten up on Phil though. Since my daughter works I get to enjoy most of the shopping and prep work. NOT! This blog preys on my mind through out the day, wondering what all of you are up to. Thinking of you today, you’re out of surgery by now, probably still snoozing. Maybe tonight we’ll hear from you?

    J on Forever Man it was emotional cheating no doubt about it. The husband and wife had a beautiful and hot relationship. I just didn’t get the ‘connection’ he immediately felt for the OW. The wife was one smart cookie. I think Flinn flubbed on trying to show it was because he was feeling protective of her being a single parent and he wanted a daughter. Another good read by Sarah Pekkanen is Things You Won’t Say. Your garden sounds lovely. I love love cabbages, their color pops in a landscaped garden. Wish you could post a picture on here. Winter here so no color.

    Tara you can read Forever Man on its own, no problem. There are references to things covered in prior books but you understand them in context. The Story of Our Life is sad, I do remember that but don’t remember if the wife found out about the cheating before he left. Did she? Try Temptation Street or Moment of Truth by Shari Low. Those two will surely make you want to junk punch. Haven’t read Girl in Corner but in reading reviews I think it’s an HEA w/o the husband.

    Katie my favorite cake is lemon but the shop you mentioned is about 50 miles from my small town. My son lives close so I’ll ask him to pick up for me. Do I need to preorder? Liked the party pants comment funny girl.

    Ann I’ve been watching the Ravens’ ranking on news feeds. Sunday they were ranked #1 then today they’re back to #2. Leads me to wonder how accurate are the news feeds. Where exactly are we on that rank?

    Ania even though you live across the pond as Ann said, you have a remarkable grasp of the English language. I would love to see pictures of the town where you live. I love small towns, can imagine sitting outdoors eating lunch watching life go by. But I also love large cities that have areas where the vibe is of a small town or ‘pocket’ within the city. Atlanta has boho areas that I love to visit.

    Carrie, I see by your post that you’re still reading the blog. It’s good to hear from you sweet pea. Do post more often, we’re just a few weeks away from SN so it will be hot and heavy on here.

    And Laura my friend. It’s been a journey for you that’s finally coming to an end. An end I’m not looking forward to while looking forward at the same time. Thank you for inviting us along on part of that journey. I know we have those 5 (?) books to look forward to but none of us want to leave the Hunters behind.

    I hope each of you enjoy the rest of your day my ladies. Since Christmas is the highlight of the year I’ve never understood why the one day, with Thanksgiving having four with the weekend. I know I’d need more than one day to recover from all the build up. I’ll check in tonight, want to see if Trace is up to posting.

    • Deighj, yes preorder on the cake! I looked up and 8 inch $32.00.
      So worth it if you like lemon cake with cream cheese frosting. I always look forward to your posts oh you wise one. I will check out the other books you mentioned.

    • Deighj, I’ll have to take another look at Forever Man. I’ve read the 2 Shari Low books. She’s a good writer, but I guess I’m too entrenched in romances. I don’t have to have a HEA, but I prefer it.

  109. Hey everyone! It feels weird to me Laura that I have nothing to ask and bug you about till SN comes out. It was our norm to check in and have Tracie ask about the mood and then have me chiming in if Kim was causing raucous each week. I feel bereft!

    What’s in Annapolis other than your Surivivor contestant friend? What are you getting Jordan for Christmas?

    I hate cleaning too. I don’t mind laundry nor bona-ing the floors but that’s about it. Made reso at a Chinese restaurant for the 15 people because no one wanted to cook on Christmas…

    Tracie, let us know if your surgery went well.

  110. Good morning girls. It’s a beautiful sunny and high 60s day in SoCal. I’m on a cleaning mission today to get ready for Christmas guests. I seriously hate cleaning, but I can’t force myself to pay someone to do it (except to help me with an annual deep clean). Why do we torture ourselves?

    Have a nice day. Except you, Tracie…just try to get through today.

  111. Good morning!
    Another beautiful day in Maryland.
    I doubt we’ll hear from Tracie today — hopefully tomorrow. I’m in Christmas mode — going out shopping and then meeting up with friends in Annapolis again– this will be my first day that I haven’t written about the Hunters since this blog took off. Strange feeling.

        • Did you know if you mistype your email, your message won’t post? Or maybe it sends it to you for approval. Anyway, retyping. I’m an eclectic shopper- a lot online, anchor stores, pop-up Christmas boutiques. I get stocking stuffers at a Japanese dollar store called Daiso? Janet, do you have a Daiso?

          • It’s because I have to approve the first message from a new person. If your email changes, you are new

  112. Tracie, it’s times like these that I wish I could send you a private message. You’ll be in my thoughts and prayers tomorrow. You make hip replacement look good, friend.

    • Katie you have a big heart. My mom always says in English we need to have a happy heart, kind heart, and a big heart. I’ll be hearing this on New Year’s Day so I’m passing it on to you too. I look forward to loopy posts from Tracie. ??

  113. Tracie – Good luck on your operation tomorrow. Hoping everything goes well – love Ania

    Thank you Laura & Thank you Tracie – i have had the goofy smile on my face 🙂

    Best Christmas Ever – SNL – so funny – it should be ,, how to survive Christmas with family” or ”how to get out of Christmas with my family”

    Ladies, its great to see how you celebrate your Christmas !

  114. Happiest of Birthdays to you, Tracie. I’m so happy you are part of my life. You make me smile every day. I hope you enjoy your scene…

    Lina came into the house from the back deck to find Adele in the kitchen pouring herself a glass of wine.
    “I got started without…” Adele trailed off, her eyes narrowing. “What were you doing?”
    Lina tightened the sash of her robe. “I was just turning up the hot tub.”
    Adele glanced at her watch. “It’s barely six.”
    “I know what time it is. It takes a while to heat up. What are you doing here, anyway?”
    “Returning your makeup.” Adele nodded toward a bag on the counter. She’d mistakenly packed away Lina’s makeup when they were in New York the previous weekend. “Where is everyone?”
    “Logan’s spending the night at Brian’s and Katie is out with Matt.”
    “Well get dressed. We’ll have Phil take us out to an insanely expensive restaurant.”
    “I’m already making dinner,” Lina said. “It’s the first Friday in forever Phil and I have been alone and I still feel bad for leaving him last weekend.”
    “You feel bad for leaving your husband alone with his own children? That’s seriously fucked up. How many times has he left you alone with them?”
    “I didn’t just leave him alone. We went out and—.”
    “Oh my God.” Adele was standing in the doorway leading into the dining room. “Candles? Fine china.” She looked back at Lina. “What am I interrupting.”
    “Nothing yet.”
    “Do you really think he’s deserves this?”
    “Deserves what? Dinner with me.”
    “Oh, I think you have much more than dinner planned. Are you even wearing a bathing suit under that robe?”
    “Stop it.” Lina stepped back as Adele reached for the knot in her robe.
    The sound of the mudroom door opening had them both turning as Phil entered the room wearing a dark suit.
    “Well if it isn’t the asshole,” Adele said.
    “Adele.” Lina frowned at her.
    “Nice to see you too.” Phil set down his briefcase before crossing to Lina. “Hi, baby.” He curved his hand around the side of her jaw as he kissed her softly.
    “You should have seen Lina last weekend,” Adele said. “I forgot how well she could dance. Everyone in the club was watching her.”
    “She’s lying,” Lina said. “Ignore her.”
    “I’m not lying. It’s been forever since I’ve seen her let loose like that.”
    “Is that right?” Phil raised his eyebrows.
    “That’s right.” Adele took a sip of wine.
    “She’s just trying to get to you,” Lina said.
    “Every man at the place was looking at her,” Adele continued. “She could have had her pick.”
    “She could always have her pick,” Phil said. “But there’s only one man she wants and you’re looking at him.”
    Adele shook her head. “You are so full of yourself.”
    “Just stating the facts,” he said before turning his attention back to Lina. “I’m going to change.” He framed her face with both his hands before brushing his lips over hers. “Send her away,” he whispered against her lips before kissing her again. “I want to be alone with you.”

    “I poured you a scotch,” Lina said when Phil returned ten minutes later in dark lounge pants and a T-shirt that clung to the muscles in his chest and arms. She was at the counter tossing a salad.
    “What’s with the robe?” He stopped behind her, one of his hands clasping her hip while the other stroked up the bare skin of her thigh.
    “I thought we could use the hot tub later. The kids are out all evening.”
    “You have nothing on under here.” He dropped his mouth to her neck as his hand cupped her butt.
    “If you want to have dinner, you’re going to have to stop doing that.”
    “Fuck dinner.” He began to kiss her neck the abrasiveness of his scruff rough against her skin.
    Lina turned in his arms the salad forgotten as she wound her arms around his neck. She met his lip, moaning as his tongue swept over hers. He lifted her up and she wrapped her legs around his hips as he carried her to the family room, falling back on the couch. She could feel his erection pressing against her, the thin cotton of his pants the only thing separating them.
    “I don’t like other men looking you,” Phil growled against her ear. He grasped her hips, pulling her down onto him as he pushed up against her.
    “She was just trying to upset you.”
    “You’re mine.”
    “I know,” Lina whispered. She lifted up slightly so he could push down his pants and then she was sinking down onto him, his body filling hers completely. “You’re the only man I’ll ever want.”

    • That was hilarious…That’s so true too! People always do that, they have a miserable time and they say shit like loved it..had a great time…we need to do this again soon….When they should of said…the only thing that could of topped this is me getting hit by a bus….. Lol

      • So true. Lol.
        Ok I read that one. Let me look again but it happened one time with his ex when he was at a conference? I actually read that one while back before the WPF craze.

          • Go go go shawty. It’s your birthday, you’re gonna party like it’s your birthday(at the hip center), you gonna sip Bacardi like it’s your birhday(pain pump). 50 cent in da club! Happy birthday ???

  115. Just back from my BD celebrations and party…My kids and friends are a blessing and I had a great time….After church this morning I was leaving and my pastor hollered out…Hey Trace what time is your surgery Tuesday? Now you girls have to picture this everyone is leaving the church….I said won’t know until tomorrow. I told him he didn’t need to come to the hospital…He said real loud…I wouldn’t miss it…When you are loopy you are a good time! Who does that…So I hollered back real loud, if you didn’t preach about not drinking the sinners juice you would have more opportunities for a good time…Lol…He just shook his head and said Oh My….

    Laura so thrilled about SN being done and looking forward to my BD scene…Thank you so much for thinking of me….Your friend is 15 pounds lighter because she walked 500 miles and lived on protein bars and wild berries…Tell your friend welcome back…Enjoy your parties….

    Thank all you girls for your well wishes this week on both my BD and surgery…You all are a true blessing to me….

          • I missed the 14 scenes! I was wrapping gifts for tonight and skimming so I missed Laura’s earlier post too till I read yours. OMG. I’m flipping too now. LOL 14!!!!! I hope everyone saw that!

          • I know I’m so excited…she said 12…but now it’s 14…My Pom Poms are shaking…Lol…I read something in one of the referenced cheat books that Tara suggested…The husband had a physical cheat and his wife said to get past it…she had to start looking at herself as a survivor and not a victim…That book had the Husbands POV and he felt sick and ashamed at what he had done…because it meant nothing…He was redeemable…Every time the h broke down he wanted to hit something because he was sick that he had done this to her…

          • I want to read this book. Which one is this? Omg my sister sent me the funniest SNL skit about Xmas. Let me find link and post. You all need to watch this one. I thought Laura said 8. She said 12 and we got 14? Man I need to read more carefully.

          • Mary Flinn. You are gonna wanna throttle him. Smack smack shake shake throttle. Guys my realtor dropped off a lemon bundt cake with lots of cream cheese frosting. Checked a few states and they carry this if you want to order(san diego, MD,OK,Ga). Not sure on price but it is sooo good. Check it out. nothingbundtcakes.com
            The one I got is lemon(my favorite flavor) with cream
            Cheese frosting.

          • Nothing Bundt Cakes are the baaassttt. I just had the lemon at a birthday party. So good. I think she said $30ish for the regular size?

          • So funny. I never heard of it till now. It must be a franchise? Every year I get ms grace’s lemon cakes but they closed their brick and mortar stores early this year. I didn’t look up price since it sent me to different locations. I got the 10 in.

  116. Good afternoon ladies!
    Well I for one can’t wait to read Tracie’s birthday gift from Laura.
    Laura I’m so excited for you that everything with SN is complete. You deserve a break to enjoy the holidays. Have fun with your friend tomorrow in Annapolis.
    I’m sitting here watching the Ravens game. Ravens are winning but it’s a sloppy game in this rain.
    Katie I love your Christmas traditions. That’s what makes life so great.
    Ania always great to hear from our sister across the pond. Keep posting.
    Deighj and Janet, love you girls. Tracie take care of that hip.
    Countdown to SN!!!!

  117. Ladies — I just finished the epilogue to Swimming Naked. I sent that and the fourteen new scenes to the editor. It’s a wrap!

    I have a Christmas party tonight and tomorrow I’m going to Annapolis with my friend who is now 15 lbs lighter after her trek through the woods.

    I will awake early tomorrow to draft Tracie’s birthday gift!

    • This is truly an accomplishment! I CANNOT wait either and am relieved it will happen in the new year since I’m not sure I can go through an emotional wringer right now. You did good Laura!! Party hardy time for you!

      Ann, really crossing my fingers for you. I want you to win!!

      Tracie, if we don’t hear from you today or tomorrow AM I wish you a painless procedure with miraculous recovery rate. You can do this friend!!

      Katie, I think my last meal would be your traditional meal. green beans, a slice of medium well( can’t handle even pink) chateaubriand, and yukon gold mashed potatoes followed by something super spicy Korean dish or habanero drenched taco.

      Deighj, my romance book guru, I always look forward to hearing your recommendations. I have downloaded so many books from your posts I almost look forward to sending my kids off to college so I can immerse in them. My gardener finally made time for my yard yesterday and I thought of you-whether you would approve of my choices in annuals. I chose mostly ranunculus and poppies with some cabbages here and there for fillers. If I don’t touch them they may live till Spring I hope.

      Ania, your posts from Poland makes me happy. I loved reading your country’s Christmas Eve tradition. Also, thank you for the youtube post. I never heard of this lady but since I will be seeing my cousins tonight for our annual Xmas party, I will talk about the girl from Poland who knows more about Kimchi than any of us. LOL. I’m not big on traditions. Once we all got married and had kids, our fun time became duty time with splitting holidays with respective families. Since we all don’t love any of our in-laws, my sister and I have come up with what we call excursion excuse where we go away for a couple days right after Xmas. This year we are renting a house in Santa Barbara but locations aren’t important. It just means I get to sleep in a bit and don’t have to cook. Hmmm, maybe this is my tradition then…

  118. Ania the pictures of TatryTOP are beautiful. I can imagine it as a family holiday home. Just wish it were mine. Your Christmas traditions are wonderful, especially the Evening Star tradition. We go to church on Christmas Eve but ours is a midnight service. Trace’s service makes more sense for families with small children. If fun really begins at 50 I’ll look forward to that. By that time the children are on their own and you have the fun of reconnecting with your husband or wife as just a couple.

    Trace I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow and what mayhem you’re gonna cause. You never fail as the life of the party. I just hope you don’t get tossed outta classs. Bet it would be a first and you would become a legend Good luck sweet girl. Loved your comment about Harry Hangover.

    Tara I read Allegiance awhile back and I agree it was much ado about nothing. I didn’t like the last half of the book at all. I just finished Forever Man by Flinn and really enjoyed. It’s at a great price as it was around $10. The Ever After by Sarah Pekkanen was another much ado. Though what woman wouldn’t be alarmed at seeing texts from another woman on her husband’s phone. Shari Low has several good books I’ve read and enjoyed.
    J, Kat, I have those books on my TBR but am in the process of making myself read those already downloaded. If I pay for a book I’m going to read it. I’ve been so fickle the entire year with my reading so I have over a hundred to get through. I plan on skimming a lot of them.
    Ann, Laura hope your holiday will be Merry without the Harry included. Having your loved ones home is the best part of Christmas. I so miss my family at this time.

    • Deighj, I didn’t mind Ever After but A Forever Man made me mad. Is this the emotional cheating? Everything blurs after a while…

    • Deighj—I looked at Forever Man and am vacillating about reading it. It’s book 4 of a series. I found the $12 off putting for The Ever After. I’ll check our Shari Low.

  119. Hi girls, I have so much cleaning and misc. to do to prep for Christmas, so I decided to take my daughter to the pool instead.
    Traditions around here- my parents always stay over on Christmas Eve. We have filet mignon, baked potatoes and green beans for dinner. On Christmas Day, we open gifts early and then go to my in-laws for dinner. My dad complains that our couch and beds are uncomfortable and that he’s never sleeping here again, but the tradition continues year after year. For two years now we’ve had to come up with elaborate stories about how Santa gets into the house, because we have an electric fireplace. My daughter is too smart, calls bullshit, so we give her a gift to divert her attention.
    I love this time of year.
    Have a good day, friends.

  120. Good Morning Girls…

    Ania I love waking up to your messages and hearing about your life and Poland….Thank you for your sweet comments…I can tell you are definitely Team Phil…Yay!

    Our Christmas traditions consist of going to a 10pm Candle Light service at our church to take the Lords Supper…it’s one of my favorite services…Christmas morning all the kids come to my house for a big breakfast and we all exchange gifts…..It’s a busy and fun morning….We try out all the new toys and electronic devices together…….this year I will be on a walker, but I still plan on being the coolest Mimi…Lol..

    Kbabe is going to love that you’re 38…She loves it when someone is close to her age, even though she has a beautiful older soul!

    We can definitely agree on Laura’s books she in a gem of person and a very talented author..As Jordan requested, we plan on continuing our motivation blogs through the next 5 books she has to finish……Love ya Laura girl, that being said…between her crazy bloggers and her crazy Chandler she made need therapy by the end of the 5th book…Lol.

    You dolls have a great Sunday. My family is taking me out for a BD lunch, since I’ll be in my geriatric class tomorrow on hip replacements…I bet I’m the only one in my 50’s in the class…ugh! However I’ll make it fun…?

  121. Hello lovely ladies !
    Its Ania again (the one who loves kimchi )

    I like you all – my conversation partners. Your contemplating made me think about some of the thing and also made me good laugh. And I love people who make me laugh.

    In reference to the blog posted on 02nd Dec 18 – (I am very very sorry for such a late reply ).

    Hi Laura – Thank you for you kind comment about my husband. He has some good qualities that life with him is easy and joyful 🙂
    I’m extremely excited for SN to be published and finally get my hands on this book!

    Hi Tracie, I must say you are a great & strong lady and I agree with you – Lina is not week for taking him back.

    Hi Janet -It will be pleasure to recommend some places for you.

    I have read all Laura’s book. LOVE THEM ALL.
    My favourite book is A Sense of Belonging.
    My favourite heros – both Tony& Phil, Casey&Lina,Micheal&Logan.
    In A Sense of Belonging- I loved their love story but also I enjoyed a banter between Michael and his father. This book was really good and very funny because was written by someone with a great sense of humor.
    My favourite moments of WPF were the scenes, where Phil demonstrated his possessive side and when Lina grew stronger with each chapter. Also I loved watching the dynamic of their family especially during christams time.

    Janet, you have mother in law, who makes traditional kimchi – how lucky you are!
    Actually, my first own kimchi was based on recipe called MOTHER IN LAW’S KIMCHI as below.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mDyhlTybVMM

    I’m 38 years old &I married my high school sweetheart my complete opposite. This year we celebrated our 15th Wedding Anniversary:)

    Hi Katie, I love your thoughts about Phil being a selfish prick -because of that we have met his soulmate and their world.

    I studied economics in high school and one of our school subject was …”Personal Communications”. I know it sounds crazy, but we learned there about positive thinking and we even had to take exam at the end of semester. I am writing this as since high school, positive thinking was something I have focused on a lot, now I am 38 and I see that positive emotions have a powerful effect in our everyday life. And I couldn’t agree with you more ”to live life fully everyday”.

    I have never heard about this movie Polish Wedding, with Claire Danes but thanks to you I will watch it 🙂

    Hi Ann, I am sending you and your friends lots of love and warm hugs!

    Just to let you know my high school friend and her family also live in Maryland like you, Lina & Phil. Fantastico !

    Hi Deighj – it is delightful to hear that you would like to immerse yourself in a small town.
    Christmas is a truly magical time of the year for most people around the world so if you ever end up spending Christmas in Poland you will see that we follow a centuries-old traditions. I am only going to mention a few.
    -As soon as the first star appears in the sky on 24 December, we start our Christmas Eve supper by sharing the Christmas wafer – Oplatek – comes from the Latin word oblatum, meaning ”to offer”, symbolising friendship & love & forgiveness & reconciliation.
    -Traditionally the table is laid with an extra seat and cutlery for any unexpected visitor in case such a person comes – this is a reminder that no one should be alone or hungry on Christmas.
    -On the table there are twelve dishes referring to the twelve apostles – they are meant to bring good luck for the New Year.

    On the last note, do you know ”Home Alone” with Kevin McCallister is a traditional Christmas movie in Poland.
    Although, my favourite Christmas movie is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.

    Ladies, what traditions and things do you in your home at christmas time???

    Since steamboat had lost the appeal for Lina & Phil – I have a new holiday home in mountains for them so Hunter’s family can celebrate Christmas and create new family traditions.

    https://www.booking.com/hotel/pl/dom-gaudi-koscielisko.html?aid=356980&label=gog235jc-1DCAsotgFCFWRvbS1nYXVkaS1rb3NjaWVsaXNrb0gJWANoUIgBAZgBCbgBF8gBD9gBA-gBAfgBAogCAagCAw&sid=54f2d7c2c544be0eb0fb0ad7e0e12460&dist=0&lang=en-us&room1=A%2CA&sb_price_type=total&soz=1&type=total&lang_click=top;cdl=en-gb;lang_changed=1

    P.S. We’re waiting for you all in Poland! Your kind words warmed my heart.

    Have a Great Sunday

    Love Ania

    • Great to hear from you, Ania!
      I love to read your posts. Your Christmas traditions sound so special. When I’m in town, I host Christmas Eve dinner for family. I have spent some Christmas holidays in Steamboat. Lately, with my father aging, I like to stay close. One of my sisters hosts Christmas dinner. One of our traditions used to be to watch Christmas Vacation late on Christmas Eve — I had to switch to another movie after my mom passed because the movie makes me think of her– she loved that movie. Now we watch Elf!
      Thanks for the kind words about my novels!

      • That’s why Steamboat is in the novel and Elf…Love these little tidbits…you write what you know and have experienced…Awesome!

  122. Ok girls, I just finished It Seemed Like A Good Idea At The Time tonight. First 50%=seriously good. Ending got a little corny, but I’d still recommend it.

  123. Hi ladies. Yes it’s a rainy day here but I’m inside with all my decorations ablaze writing Christmas cards.
    Sorry Tracie I thought today was your birthday. You’ll just get extra birthday wishes. My daughters and myself all have birthdays during the holidays. I always tried to make their birthdays special because when I was a kid my relatives used to give me the old combination gift. Oh here’s your birthday and Christmas gift. Lol. So I swore I wouldn’t do it to them.
    Katie, I have read several AL Jackson books. I’ll go back and see if I read that one. The Kylie Scott book “it seemed like a good idea” I have the sample downloaded but didn’t start yet. Is it really good?
    Tara you sound like you’ve got December birthdays too.
    Laura sounds like you were merry last night if you’re still in your jammies. How are the remaining scenes coming together?

        • It has been forever since you asked this. But forever to us is a week. It seems like Laura sent SN to the editor 4 months ago when it’s only been 2 weeks!

      • Other than Phil sighting at the beach during the summer, I don’t think you took a day off. I hope the two scenes you have left will give all of us closure. Is it the epilogue?!

        • No, I haven’t had a day off in months. I am ready to be done! My friend is returning today from the wilderness and Jordan is home Friday for a week. I am down to the epilogue (which I’ll probably write tomorrow) and an edit to one scene. I’ll be sending my additions to the editor — hopefully that won’t be too much trouble.
          Tracie — the mood is happy!

          • Wow. Your discovery channel friend left during the summer! I remember. Time flies. You so deserve the longest break.

          • I’m so happy your friend and Jordan are coming home…I can’t wait to see what your friend thinks of SN….You do need a long break….But like Jordan said you have five more we have to finish LOL…..

            So happy my Hunter’s are happy! They need a break too!

  124. I’m writing the final two scenes of SN as I listen to holiday music — still in my jammies. A rainy day in Maryland.

  125. Has anyone read All of Me by AL Jackson? I was reading it but then got sidetracked by Kylie Scott’s, It Seemed Like A Good Idea, which is turning out to be an awesome age gap/dad’s friend ???.
    Should I finish All of Me? It’s seeming to be a little bit like Laura’s When I Saw You..?

    • Hi all. Checking in. I got up to 50 percent on all of me. I’ve read most of AL Jackson but she’s one of the authors that follow the formula and it was so slow. I will finish it eventually. Happy early birthday to everyone! I started a girl in the corner. So far so good…

      • Yes it’s slow…I found a blogger who seems to have good taste, and she called it best of 2018. I’ll go back to it.

    • You and the age gap obsession. Lol. I will have to read that now too. Is the heroine heavy in this one? I’m wondering if I read it already if it’s an old one.

      • No, not heavy. Unless I missed that. It’s from this year, August. I’m at 40ish% and they just did it. ? I think it could go to my top 5…I’ll let you know when I finish.
        Yes, I love my age gaps. If I analyze myself, it’s an obsession I’ve had in my real and personal life since the summer before 9th grade. My first kiss…an 18 year old. Don’t tell anyone. I’m a rebel.
        I read a lot of different romance, but the age gaps seem to be my thing. There’s a built-in forbideness. ??

          • I was terrified by it. Or turned on and didn’t know what that was then? My parents were too busy laughing at my reaction to ask too many questions. Plus, my parents were a freshman and senior, so they couldn’t say shit, really. (They’ve been together 50 years by the way).
            I had a boyfriend all of high school. He was also a few years older. It’s my MO, clearly.

  126. Thank you girls…my BD is actually Monday, but I’ll take those warm wishes today too…. Tara you are spot on, even as a kid my mama kept my BD separated from Christmas. She never allowed anyone to wrap my presents in Christmas paper either…LOL….

    • Monday is my mom and mother in law’s birthday too. My birthday and one of my brother in law’s are too. My mom always made sure to separate my b’day because hers never was growing up.

  127. Tracie, happy birthday!

    Ann, lots of Christmas time birthdays in my family. The trick is to keep the celebrations separate, and never wrap b’day gifts in Christmas paper!!

  128. Happy birthday Tracie! Have a great day!!
    It’s tough having a birthday during the holidays, but then again everyone is usually having fun.

  129. Good morning girls…working again today so I don’t worry about loose ends while I’m healing…

    Laura hope your merry was merry…Lol

    check in later girls…

  130. So a Lina/Phil hot scene eh? Make it a good one Laura on Trace’s double nickel.
    I’m addicted to this blog, always ‘just one more peek.’

  131. Hey ladies just catching up on lunch break. Is Costco still owned by Kmart, is there still a Kmart? Never heard of World Market, thanks for the tip, found one about forty miles away.
    J which book with no HEA are you reading from Tara’s list? I have the new to me on my TBR list. Tara, thanks again for that list.
    Katie my post on the ‘became more’ happened after reading that scene again. Pulled me right back in knowing now that it truly was just more sex. Being pulled back in is a tribute to Laura’s writing. A physical relationship is easier to forgive I think.
    Ann my condolences on your friend’s death. It’s tough on you and your husband dealing with being so far away, not being able to physically support his widow. It makes it somehow sadder, not being together or able to share your happy memories.
    So Trace what type of scene from Laura will you choose? A Kim bashing scene, a Phil/Lina steamy scene? Or a scene with Liam at home with the Hunters?
    I’m always playing catch up and today isn’t any different. You ladies enjoy yourselves, w/b catching up this evening.

    • You’re welcome for the list.

      I read Allegiance by Mary Flinn the morning. It wasn’t bad, it’s more of a misunderstanding/lack of communication story, not great, but readable.

      I’m starting the Adultery Club next.

  132. I’m soooo excited and thank you Laura..best BD ever…How about something like Phil coming home to a child free home and Lina surprising him with a romantic outdoor dinner and a patio chaise lounge for dessert. Just an idea…a scene where Lina swoons him would be awesome….I’m all about the alarm in access….remember all the times I wanted him to go looking for her, but when he finds her this time…she would be the one doing the swooning…Wowza…I’m so excited….

    Call me what you will J-Girl…Horny dog…slut puppy…love them all…LOL

  133. Good morning!
    Five new scenes to go. I’ll just slip the new scenes in when I receive the manuscript back from the editor — also caught an error based on Maryland law. Should be interesting to see if the editor catches it. I can finally say, I’m happy with SN — I needed to make some points more obvious which is why I added additional scenes.
    I need to write a scene for Tracie for her birthday — what should it be about?

    • Tracie likes her swoon scenes. She’s a horn dog when it comes to Phil. What would you like to see Tracie? Phil or a showdown with Lina and Kim? Logan and Liam? So many possibilities. Laura, will you put the scene in SN? For you to be happy with SN we will be ecstatic. Thank you for indulging us. We are spoiled!

      • This scene will not appear in SN — at least I don’t think it will. No Liam and Logan or Kim and Lina — those will have to wait for SN — I don’t want to give anything away.

  134. Good morning girls…working today to finish up last minute stuff….

    Laura I haven’t asked this in so long, but where are we today? Since you are writing seven new scenes, I had to ask….Lol

    Ann hope you are feeling better today….

    • Morning Ladies, thank you all for your prayers for my girlfriend. She has lots of support and she is a strong lady.

      Hope we here about some news on the Hunters today. Miss them.

      Tracie, how are you feeling?

  135. My heart is heavy ladies. I just got off the phone with an old girlfriend. She and her husband just recently moved to their dream house down south this past Summer. Both of them are early 60’s and retired. Her husband suffered a massive heart attack last night and did not
    make it. I was in shock when she called. We had visited them this past Summer and they were so happy.
    Make sure you hug your loved ones because you just never know what can happen!

  136. Okay babes. I’ve been reading a couple of these cheating books you guys recommended and here is what I think…I would damn sure whether my husband have a physical affair than an emotional one…Like Laura commented there is no love in Phil fucking Kim…Emotional is all about love and feelings….I’m reading the fourth child now and let me tell you the woman is devasted by the emotional….My Phil has already been redeemed Chapter 47…just saying Lol

  137. Shit Katie, you’re making us think too much. To me that sounds more unforgivable. I know it’s twisted but what you are describing is someone who has fallen for the other woman rather than used the other woman. Regardless, both scenarios are cheating.

  138. Ok so here’s a question. What if the 4-month affair was something more than sex? What if he was fond of Kim, took her out, flirted, displayed affection, hand-held, planned a trip to Steamboat? Would that make him unredeemable? Even if he ended it, never loved Kim, and spent his life making it up to Lina?

    Think.

    • Shit shoot shit. I feel like Laura told us he did do these things bc it was an affair but everything was physical only. Also your question got me thinking what if Kim was a normal woman who thought she was in love and made a mistake? Kbabe where are you getting these torture questions?

      • I don’t know. I’m feeling contemplative.
        People date and don’t fall in love. It could’ve been somewhere between lust and love. Does it matter if the end result and actions are the same?

        • Well sure. If Phil’s feelings were involved it would be harder for the readers to believe his everlasting love for his beloved. Feelings for Kim = I love Laura’s writing but sorry Phil, I don’t love you. Maybe it’s easier for me because I’m not in love with Phil like Tracie and Ann are.

      • I going to put you out of your misery. And then it became more = more than a one night f–k. It became many nights of it. I wasn’t implying an emotional attachment in any way.

    • He never held her hand and if he fell even a little in love with her he wouldn’t be Phil and therefore I wouldn’t find him redeemable. Kim isn’t even lovable.

      • Bahaha. So true. It wouldn’t be Phil and this would be another story. The what if questions put me through the wringer! Why do you want to put me through this when Xmas is around the corner? Do you guys have world market(used to be Cost Plus) where you all live? It was a mad house. I just wanted some peppermint bark and use my coupon and there was a fight in the parking lot. People are stressed.

          • It’s more like a size of a grocery store and think of target but little more high end and food from around the world.
            worldmarket.com

          • I just looked it up. They have one about thirty minutes from me. They are owned by Bed, Bath and Beyond. Interesting.

          • Oh yes. They bought cost plus and changed the name I believe. You will find chocolates and food you won’t see elsewhere. Few years back it was hard to find the chocolate brand Kinder in the US. I think it’s everywhere now but back then I could only find them at world market. And Madelines from France. Best of all the prices are great just like target.

          • It’s neat. Like Janet said, food and knick knacks from around the world. I like their home decor too. Very affordable.
            Check it out for Christmas gifts.

          • Oklahoma has one too…going by Monday while I’m in Tulsa….I love places like this store….

  139. Two book recommendations by C.J. Carmichael.
    Good Together – no HEA with husband but another guy
    The Fourth Child – HEA

  140. Afternoon ladies, just catching up with all of you. Been busy with outdoor decorating. I’m telling you housework is a four letter word.

    Tara glad you joined us. I’m on team Phil, never saw her ending up with Nick. But I felt such rage at him for not explaining the WHY of the affair or the IT BECAME MORE. More WHAT is what I wanted to know, just sex? His leaving Lina Sunday’s before he had to. Thank God Laura’s gonna give that to us in SN.
    Thank you for the book recommendations, I’m sure if we haven’t read them we will be.
    J and Katie I’m going to reread Adultry Club, it’s been a long time and I’ve forgotten some details. I’ve been reading historicals because contemporary is just blah after WPF and the scenarios of SN on here.
    Trace hope all goes well for you. Why didn’t the doctor prescribe pain meds since you’re in pain now?

    • Why do you want to read this again Deighj? I will never go there again. Ditching his wife on Val day to take the mistress out? Noooo. Save yourself from gratuitous anger.

      Also completely agree about then it became more. I so wish Lina asked him what that more was. I dissected this sentence and it stil upsets me. Became more than a fling?

    • You scared? Its no fun but by Xmas it’ll be all over. You can recoup in bed with some of your vanilla birthday cake, brown paper bag and swimming naked! You will be good as new after the new year. How’s your rib?

      • I’m not scared J-Girl, maybe a little wary of the unknown…But my legs are getting so weak from not being able to use my leg.and having to set so much.The pain is getting worse, so I’m ready! My rib is back in place started usuinf two crutches to prevent that from happening… After Tuesday I’ll have a titanium hip and a few works after that no pain…So bring it on…Lol

  141. I’ve put so much thought into this book, and this is what I’ve come up with.
    1. If Phil hadn’t cheated, this story wouldn’t exist, and what a sad existence that would be for all of us. Thanks for being a selfish prick, Phil, and bringing us all together.
    2. Once Phil emerged from the fog of his affair, he was ashamed, and didn’t want to relive it by explaining his actions. What good would it do? (Phil’s thinking…). Kim didn’t mean anything to him, and he wouldn’t have ever needed to explain if she hadn’t become pregnant. As Lina learned more details, she became less forgiving. That’s what he was trying to avoid.
    3. Just from a literary strategy perspective… if Phil had given satisfactory explanations for the photos and other details in WPF to Lina, Lina might not have sought the comfort of Nick, and, again, we wouldn’t have this story (I.e. love triangle).

    So, what I’m saying is, we judge the book as if these characters are real people, based on our own feelings and opinions…but had certain details not been included or excluded (the affair, no condom, pregnancy, lack of explanation by Phil, etc. etc.), we wouldn’t have this story to dissect the shit out of.

    That’s all for now.
    ??

    • Most of these are romances and in no particular order and I can’t say I liked all of them…

      Saving Grace — AD Justice
      Love in English — Karina Halle (2 book series—she’s the OW)
      The Torn Up Marriage — Caroline Roberts (this has another title too, I think it’s The Desperate Housewife)
      Whatever it Takes — L Maretta (this has dual POV)
      The Girl in the Corner — Amanda Prowse (I read this the other day, it’s fairly new)
      Life Without You — SP West (he’s not redeemable)

      And 3 old Harlequin/Silhouettes:
      A Perfect Marriage — Laurey Bright
      The Ultimate Betrayal — Michelle Reid
      Marriage Meltdown — Emma Darcy

  142. Good morning Ladies. Beautiful day here.
    Reading through the posts of yesterday, I say hello to Tara. I joined the group a couple of weeks ago, even though I have been reading the blog for months. I have also read WPF 3 times.
    As far as Phil, I am Team Phil; however, there is a part of me that can not understand the “why” as you stated. I go back and forth. I think Katie described it pretty well. Phil needs to be in control and when he isn’t, he’s vulnerable. Sometimes I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that he was with Kim and then he takes her to Steamboat. I want answers and I think we will get them in SN.

    • One scenario I’ve thought of is that he went to steamboat by himself (to escape the stress of his life), and Kim followed him there. I find it very hard to believe he took her there on some romantic getaway.

      • Yes I am also hoping for this too. It’s out of character for Phil. He used Kim for sex so why take her to his home? We thought he took Kim during spring break but that wasn’t the case. I think it was for
        work or like you said Kim followed Phil. I don’t love to talk about this incident. We will get the answer in SN.

  143. Janet and I thought that Kim may have fed her dad that story…..I don’t think she would tell other people, that would look like a failure on her part…In the break up scene when he said I don’t want you anymore and Kim said I don’t believe you…..I still don’t think she accepts the fact that Phil doesn’t want her….

  144. Ladies,

    I’ve been following your conversations for a while, I’d prefer not to call it lurking as that sounds rather stalkerish. I came here searching for info when I heard there would be a sequel to WPF.

    I’m finding your discussion about redeeming the cheater interesting.

    I’ve reread WPF a couple of times and pick it up and read chunks of the story at a time. After The first time I read WPF, I wasn’t convinced about Phil and his redemption. This blog is proof that as readers we became really invested in Lina and Phil’s story. I desperately wanted there to be a sequel.

    I want to know what he was thinking. How does he justify telling himself he loves his wife even though he’s having sex with someone else? If the going gets tough at home, doesn’t he owe it to himself and Lina to discuss it, before he starts a relationship elsewhere, even if it’s just sex. How does he justify 4 months of cheating on, not just Lina, but his children too. It wasn’t a one night drunken mistake, once started it was planned and carried out with a purpose. He starts cheating after they drift apart because of what had been going on with Katie. Was this exacerbated by his punishment decree? Does he feel responsible that she starts cutting herself? Does he feel Lina was blaming him? And, for the love of god, why didn’t he use a condom? I don’t really expect all of my questions to be answered. Can you tell I’ve been a little obsessed by their story too—LOL!

    As a reader, I want to understand the why. I have to believe the cheater has learned something from what they’ve done and have to believe that it won’t happen again if they’re that situation again.

    Now having said all that, I do believe he’s learned something and is redeemed to Lina.

    There’s the Bible verse from James about faith without works being dead. It’s a similar concept, apologizing isn’t enough, behavior needs to prove it too.

    Thanks, Tara

    • Hey Tara, you’ll hear from Laura, I’m sure, but I can tell you we’ve all been discussing these same questions for months. Phil’s identity is as the alpha male of the house. There’s a crisis (Katie), and then her psychiatrist basically makes Phil feel like Katie’s issues are his fault. Lina is turning to Nick’s advice more than Phil, and he becomes lost. He can separate his love for his wife/family from sex with Kim by compartmentalization. The affair with Kim is an outlet, something to control, something to take his mind off his issues. Because everything is out of his control. We’ll really get into Phil’s head in the sequel, and we can’t wait.

      Welcome…post more…??

      • Katie, thanks for your reply. I know the answers. There’s a part of me as a reader that wants Phil to verbally own what he’s done and explain why. I guess it’s the reverse of the “if your going to talk the talk, you need to walk the walk.”

    • Hey Tara! I think you answered the doubts/questions yourself. I think SN is all about Phil redeeming himself to Lina. Phil cheated but he loves Lina and both cannot be happy without each other so then what can they do? They don’t really have a choice other than to forgive one another. We have to forgive the details of the affair because Lina did once Phil explained about the pictures. Laura asked her readers here a few times can you forgive an affair? Your answer to this question will weigh heavily whether you can let go of his transgressions.

      Welcome to the darkside!

      • Hey Janet, am I on the dark side because I’m not completely Team Phil?

        I’m Team Lina and if forgiving Phil and moving on with him is her decision, I’m good with it. What I loved about Laura’s storytelling in this book was seeing where the story was taking me. Normally, I’m a romance reader and am looking for a HEA, but for this book I was happy to let it lead me wherever it was going. Whether it was making things work with Phil, further exploring a relationship with Nick or having Lina on her own it probably would have worked for me. I wouldn’t have loved the Nick direction, he was too much of an opportunist in letting Lina get emotionally attached to him and playing on it. As Katie’s doctor this has issues and Phil wasn’t wrong about that.

        I like cheating stories, I want to see if the author can make me believe it’s possibe for a couple to come back from it—isn’t that the sign of a good storyteller when they can make you believe in an ending that you might not believe in real life?

        • Hi Tara, Team Phil loves a challenge…Lol…By the end of SN you will be Team Phil……Your questions will be answered…By the way, we don’t mind being stalked.

        • Hi. I mean dark side because of the blog and the book. I read WPF a year ago and was consumed by it and felt compelled to come to this blog.

    • Thanks, Tara! Great to hear from you! Phil does explain himself in Swimming Naked — you still can’t justify the betrayal. I think one of the reasons Phil didn’t try to in a White Picket Fence is because he wanted to take full responsibility for what happen, not try to put any of the blame on Lina — it’s hard to explain why he did it without pointing out Lina’s faults. He didn’t want to make her feel bad. In doing that I left many readers frustrated and unsatisfied. And I totally agree with the ‘apologizing isn’t enough’ statement. It’s always actions. Words are easy.

      • Here’s my issue, I can’t really reconcile Lina’s transgressions before his affair with his ultimate betrayal of Lina and his family. Her transgressions really hit me when she goes to Nick after receiving the pictures. My gut reaction to that was she’s really crossed a line then, but again that was well after he crossed so many lines! I guess that’s why I’d like to be in his head.

  145. Last one… in AC, he says to his wife, “she moved, she’s gone” about the OW. Sooo, guy, that doesn’t mean anything. The affair should be over regardless of geography. Even if you see her every fucking day, OVER!

    • Well it was OVER with Phil and Kim so we can now move on to the healing part…you know I said I was starting to look at Lina and Phil a little different in the way they take on Kim….but I also think I’ve underestimated Kim in SN…she’s going to be more ruthless than what I think I can imagine….

        • My mama use to say there is nothing more dangerous than a thief or a liar…. Kim would lie when the truth would go better.

      • Do you think she acts like the betrayed other woman (i.e., this guy led me on and then left me alone with his kid to raise), or do you think she acts like Phil is a conquest (I.e., I saw him, wanted him, took him, and he’ll leave his wife for me, he just hasn’t yet)???

          • I don’t think it’s in the chase, it’s running Lina off… Being narcissistic she probably feels Phil would want her back, if it wasn’t for Lina…

  146. J, in adultery club I thought he was confused and thought he might’ve loved the OW. By the end, he was (as was I) convinced it was only a sexual connection. But even in his send off if the OW, he didn’t say the right things, and I think he’d screw her again if given the opportunity.

    • I don’t even remember. The only thing that stuck with me was he gave a 2ct Tiffany ring to the kid on the street? But his actions made me ill. But so did the husband in the mill house. They both made me ill.

  147. My made-up quotes, just examples, J.

    I loved when Phil told Kim he wouldn’t be with her even if Lina and he split.

  148. Phil said a whole lot in the break up scene…When he looked at her tight dress over her hips and all he saw was regret…Right there he could of said it’s sad but true I have to give that tight body up, etc…Things like that would of changed my whole opinion about Phil…In my eyes, with that type of attitude he wouldn’t of been redeemable because it would not have been sincere…

      • Kbabe do you think the reason Phil didn’t blame Lina is because he blamed Nick for Lina’s behavior? Remember when Phil said Katies changing doctors, Drayton is not good for this family! Phil really wanted ties severed when he found out Lina had told Nick about Kim…

        • I think he realized that his affair and the aftermath was pushing Lina to Nick. If their marriage was going to survive, Nick needed to be out of the picture.
          This proves my point though. Lina had to come to her conclusion about her feelings about Nick on her own. It’s the only way they could move on. And Phil, in true love style, set her free to do that, hoping and praying she’d come back to him.
          Just like you can’t make someone cheat…you also can’t make someone stop cheating, unless they stop it themselves.
          Have I made any sense yet?

      • It’s over because he wants it to be over, not because he was forced by his wife to end it….Phil ended the affair before the baseball scene…he was ready to let her go…

        • So are you saying if Lina caught him a week before he ended the affair he wouldn’t be redeemable? I guess not in the reader’s eyes

          • Well she did catch him. But didn’t confront him. He ended it himself.
            This is where some might disagree with me. I would rather have the guy finish the affair, whatever that means, than to end it because he got caught.
            This is what’s not redeeming…
            “If I wasn’t married, we could be together…”
            “I’m trying to save my marriage, I wish we could keep this up…”
            “You’ll be hard to give up…”
            “We can’t do this, as much as I want to…”

            I do think some readers will discredit redemption if he was caught during as opposed to after the affair.

          • Not at all, Phil was redeemable all the way with me…I’m just spotlighting another one of Phil’s qualities…to some it would be important…

          • Laura, this is where I struggle a bit. What if Laura caught Phil in the act a week before at work let’s say. But Phil would have
            Broken things off with Kim on his own once their bond was mended. Would Lina still forgive? She still loves him, Phil has integrity, and they are still soulmates. But Lina saw what they were doing. This is where I struggle becasue in other books once the wife sees or hears it is so much harder to forgive.

          • Janet Lina did see it…she saw it in the text messages and pictures…but Phil was still sick by what he had done and what Lina had saw……

          • I agree with Tracie. She did see it, and that’s why she kicked him out. It became much more real at that point.

          • Ok true. Never mind. My mind is on 25 teachers/staff right now. But I read all your posts and my heart started racing again. I’m torturing myself. Let’s just forgive. Actually you all did. I gotta forgive because Lina already did. I said from day 5 who am I to throw judgement when Lina says she wants Phil. Ultimately she is happier with him than without.

          • Phil is a good man…Like I’ve said a million times he was redeemed for me in Chapter 47…He is a mans man and he owns his mistakes..That’s big for me, most men would try to blame it on something or someone else…

          • Kbabe, those quotes are from books or you made them up? I actually didn’t think the guy from adultery club would cheat again but now I’m rethinking after what you wrote. SP west’s book I forgave the husband because I knew he wouldmt cheat even though it was the OW who dumped him first.

          • When he looked at the evidence like it was someone else…he was looking at it through Lina’s eyes…What is that girls…it’s remorse….

          • You guys are right. He is a good man. Becasue he is a man of integrity and a good person I had a harder time digesting his betrayal. I never doubted his love for Lina. But when the pictures came out I lost it.

            Every year I do this. I think I can skip here and there but I can’t. I’m grateful and it’s one time in the year where I can show my appreciation. So suck it up!