Becka's Babble

Ramblings of a Romance Writer

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Cold Cocked!

Now, before I get lambasted for having the *gasp* "C" word on my blog, for those of you who might not know **Becka lifts the rock you've been living under** being "cold cocked" means you've been punched in the face unawares.

Now, this little story takes place in the karate dojo on Cornelius Pass Blvd. here in good ol' Hillsboro, Oregon. It involves my 7 y/o and my 6 y/o and an instructor we'll call "Sifu Ben". So I don't know how to spell "Sifu", but apparently it means "teacher" in Japanese. I'm sure those of you in karate yourself can correct my spelling and any translation errors I may make.

Sifu Ben is a nice man. Handsome, caring, and truly loves what he does. And my girls just recently tested to get their advanced white belt, a white belt with a black stripe down the middle, which they have now attained. This means that they can now attend the advanced Kinder class with the older kids.

So they're learning the hammer chop, which is when your opponent comes at you with a closed fist over their head. They are also learning the outward block, which is... uhm... in layman's terms: sand the floor. If you get the reference, you get 1,000 Machio points.

Anyway. So one child does the hammer chop while the other does the outward block. Now, you'd think the one doing the hammer chop would the be the one to avoid, but oh no. You have vastly underestimated the enthusiasm of my 7 y/o's outward block. Instead of "outward" in a vague "sand the floor" motion, my child decided to block the chop . . . by cold cocking her sister.

There were a few parents in the room, and everyone did the collective **GASP!!** while crickets chirped, placing bets on how loud my 6 y/o can wail. She tried to hold in the tears, she really did, but once the dam broke, there was waterworks everywhere. She was crying, my older daughter was crying, even Sifu Ben was "shocked" and "awed".

Thankfully, my daughter does not have a black eye, despite the fact that you could hear the punch clear into the next room. It was a complete accident, as my older daughter didn't mean to punch her, but I think she was getting a little frustrated that she wasn't getting the hang of "sand the floor" and decided to take our her frustrations with a punch of her own.

The drama has now finally died down, but I thought to myself, "Self, you can't NOT blog this." So here it is. Poor kids.


Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Dear. God.

Too many hot men, so little time. And dammit, I'm married. :P

Here are my two obsessions of the summer. Wentworth Miller and Paul Walker.

Wentworth Miller of Prison Break fame (much better with his hair :P)

Paul Walker of Eight Below fame

These two men are so fricken' hot that they make my eyes water just looking at them. LOL Paul's going to be the "hero" in the video for my upcoming western, RIDIN' SHOTGUN, the story of Shirley Bloom, Lissa's sister of IN YOUR ARMS with Champagne Books. Isn't he a hottie? Dang, I'm partial to blonds and he takes the cake. But Wentworth... Ah, there's something to be said about tall, dark and handsome as well. However, I do prefer him with hair.

Thought I'd give you ladies a thrill today. Enjoy the pics. :)


Sunday, August 27, 2006

DH and I are Kick Ass Parents.

"Why?" you ask?

Because we gave our three girls their very own princess room this weekend. Here are the pics:

Princess Bedroom #1

Princess Bedroom #2

Princess Bedroom #3

Princess Bedroom #4

Oh yeah, that's what I'm talkin' about. LOL Our parents never did *anything* half that cool for either of us growing up. We never even got the non-commital coat of paint. LOL We've got a THEME ROOM goin' on in our house. :D And yes, our three girls share this room. Our boy has a room all to himself. We can't wait to do his room. We're thinking either Buzz Lightyear or Superman. That will be awesome.

The girls LOVE the room and can't wait to go to sleep now. :) It was a lot of work, but we recruited the family to help us out a bit. Yesterday was paint day and today was odds-&-ends day. Those pink curtains? Yup, *I* sewed those myself. And isn't that princess border just too cool?

Our kids almost exploded when they saw the room in all it's glory. We even bought a new carpet for in there (as their floor is only concrete *daylight basement*). So this is night and day. We don't really have any before pictures, that's the only bummer. But it was a dingy white with no pizazz. Now it's got pizazz in spades. :D


Saturday, August 26, 2006

Becka's Random Question of Truth

Have you ever gone out in public without a bra? And how often do you do this?

I admit that I have, however, not for extended periods. Only if I'm going to be out for no longer than 10 to 15 minutes. Quick trips to the fast food joint are not "bra-worthy", because I don't actually have to get out of my car. LOL Quick trips to the store for more soda isn't necessarily "bra-worthy" as well. However, I do try to make sure I'm wearing a dark-colored shirt to hide the fact that I'm blowin' in the wind... :P

However big trips to the grocery store or "errand" day does get the bra. But home is a "bra-free" zone. I hate bras. But on the other hand, I can't stand jiggling in public. LOL Yet I'd rather forego the bra-wearing if I'm going on short jaunts.

How about you? Discuss.


Thursday, August 24, 2006

And Then There Were Eight

Scientists decide Pluto’s no longer a planet - Space News -

:( Today is a sad day. Probably won't effect me much beyond stepping on my childhood. :P

But scientists have finally ended the debate--Pluto is no longer a planet.

Why does this "step on my childhood"? Well, when I was a kid, I LOVED the planets and stars. In fact, until I realized my calling was writing books, I wanted to be an astronomer. I had books and books of the solar system, the galaxy, the sun, etc. I have learned there are NINE planets in our solar system. Blue from Blue's Clues even has a catchy little ditty about the planets. :P


Under this new definition, they are making Pluto a "dwarf" planet, which also includes an object in the Asteroid Belt as well as that disputed object floating beyond Pluto AND Pluto's moon. Guess we gotta prepare for our solar system getting "bigger" while also getting "smaller".

The funny thing is? Pluto has been a "planet" since 1930, 76 years. In the grand scheme of things, Pluto hasn't even been a planet for *half a year* in Pluto's time. Pluto's yearly rotation is 248 Earth years. :P Literally a drop in the bucket.


Monday, August 21, 2006

Ah, Nostalgia

My seven y/o daughter is way above her reading level. She's in the second grade, and she reads at about a 4th to 5th grade level, I would say. We recently went to the Goodwill, because we were going to be waiting in line for a long time at a nearby restaurant, so we went in there to poke around.

Aside from being one of the cleanest and most well-organized Goodwills I've ever been to, we sauntered on over to the kids books. There, we found a whole mess of Nancy Drew books for a buck a piece.

I used to love Nancy Drew as a kid, and in fact, whenever my dad would take us kids to the library, I'd always check out the books. After I was done freaking out over my forgotten childhood (LOL) we bought all the Nancy Drew books they had (about 5). Now, my daughter is reading them and really enjoying them!

I've actually asked her if I could borrow them when she's done. She giggled, but said yes. :P I'm actually excited at the prospect of reading those old Nancy Drew mysteries again. I can remember many a lazy summer day curled up with Nancy and her sleuthing skills. It's gonna be great.

I can't wait! :D


Friday, August 18, 2006


Why am I WHHHEEEE-ing? I'll tell you why. I just bought tickets to a Michael W. Smith concert!

Michael who??


He's a Christian singer. I've been listening to him since 1988, when my best friend at the time brought over his concert (recorded in 1986) called "The Live Set". I listened to that tape until it wore so thin... LOL After that, I bought every single one of his albums. Needless to say, he's been around for a long time, but really doesn't look too worse for wear. He's actually a very handsome man. In fact, I just updated my MySpace page to play one of his songs if you want to go check it out. Even if you don't know who he is, you may recognize his voice. It's kinda nasally and scratchy; very distinctive.

Anyhow, why am I so excited? Well, I've never seen this guy in concert. The chance I had in school to go to Sacramento when I lived in Carson City with my youth group fell through because I had a broken ankle and didn't want to brave the drive and the crowds with crutches. After that, I kept looking for him to come to the west coast, but like most Christian singers, he stays to the east and midwest. :( And whenever he would come to our area, it was for Jesus Northwest, which is held in George, Washington (yes, there's a town called "George" in the state of Washington)... But that venue is soooo far away. I'm on the western coast of Oregon (well, relatively. I'm in Portland, inland about 50 miles.) George, Washington is in eastern-central Washington. B.F.E. Gorgeous venue, because you're literally on the Columbia River Gorge, but out in the middle of "where the hell am I?"

Well, MWS is FINALLY coming to Tualatin, a town about 15 minutes away, and I'm not passing it up. What's more, he's coming on October 9th, my birthday! So it's going to be a great night for me. I'm so happy! Been listening to the guy for 18 years (holy moly, that long?!?) and I've never once seen him in concert.

Those of you in the midwest/east coast who have seen him multiple times--I don't want to hear it. Talk to the hand. :P


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

My Guilty Pleasure

Do you have a favorite TV show that you probably wouldn't tell anyone in casual conversation? Well I have one that I'm not particularly proud of, but I just can't get enough of the show. It is so cheesy and so horrible, that I find myself tuning in every week just to find out what happens. It definately doesn't take itself seriously, and should not BE taken as a serious TV show.

I'm talking about WHO WANTS TO BE A SUPERHERO? on the SciFi channel.

Have you seen it? Total cheese, like a cross between "Big Brother" where they all live in a house, and "Survivor", where they get voted off the island . . . er, off the show. But instead of the other contestants voting them off, Stan Lee, creator of such legendary comic heroes as Spiderman and the Hulk, kicks them off. They are judged by their superhero worthiness.

I know. Believe me, I KNOW.

But I just can't help it. At first, I was like "what is this show?" Then I saw a little bit and was like "oh gawd, this can't be for real". After I watched one episode, I had DH set up the DVR to record it every week. :P I don't know what it is that calls me like a siren song; the campiness? The obvious over "acting" by these wannabe superheroes? The over-the-top drama? It's crazy. It's insane. I can't believe I'm even watching it.

But tomorrow, you better believe I'm going to be sitting in front of my TV, with my bowl of popcorn, and the paper sack firmly over my head. With eye holes cut out, of course. :P


Tuesday, August 15, 2006

We Paid off our Car Today!

There isn't a feeling quite like when you pay the final payment on a car loan. The car you bought so long ago is finally YOURS. No more will you have to shell out hundreds of dollars a month for the beast.

DH and I have owned three cars in our lives. The first was the one where we paid our final payment and even got our title in the mail--on a car that was sitting totaled in a junkyard. Yup, DH had gotten into a wreck, and because he'd put so many miles on the car from his pizza delivery job (before we got married), they decided to junk the car because it would cost more to fix it than the car was worth. So we ended up paying car payments on a car we no longer had. How much does that suck?

The next car we owned was a Chevy Sprint, a tiny little thing. But it was our first car as a married couple. We loved it, and we no longer had to ride our bikes everywhere. (My friend Lisa will appreciate that one. LOL) Anyhow, we bought it for $700, and looking back now, I think we were robbed. LOL All in all, the car served it's purpose, until the engine gave out because of this or that and we ended up pushing the darn thing around the block every week, because in L.A., they clean the streets once a week, and if your car is on the street, you'll get like a $20 ticket. Gah. So every week, we'd push the thing around the block. We finally donated it to, I mean some charity. :P

The third car we owned was a Mazda Protege, a 1991 model. We bought it in 1996, so it was only a few years old at the time. We loved that car. But the years passed, and we only owned the thing for about 6 months before we ended up selling it to our friend. He desperately needed a car, and we'd just bought our 15 passenger party van (another story).

In 1998, we bought a Nissan Maxima. Beautiful car, still looks bad ass today. LOL We bought it when it had only 10 miles on the odometer. Black car, black leather interior, seriously an awesome car. This is the car I finally paid off today.

"But Becka," you say, "I did the math and that's *8* years to pay off a car?!?"

"Yes," I answer.

You see, when DH and I bought the car so long ago, we were young and stoopid. We leased it, because we thought in a few years, we'd get another one. But then, the babies started coming, and we didn't have any extra money for a new car. When we moved to Oregon, we decided to buy it, because our lease was up. But unfortunately, not all of our lease payments flip-flopped into the loan that we now had to pay as the purchasers. We still had a substantial balance to pay, around $15-$18 Grand. So for the past few years, we've been paying $413 car payments on a car that we've had for *8* years. Why did we decide to buy this car instead of getting a newer one?

Again, the money issues, and the fact that with the new loan, we'd only have to pay off ballpark $18 Grand for a luxury car as opposed to $35 Grand and up. Besides, the car had been good to us. VERY good. In fact, I'd recommend Nissan Maximas to anyone who was looking for a new car to buy. We recently had to put a little money into it, but that was only due to wear and tear on the car. It is EIGHT years old, after all. :P

So today, my DH got a bonus at his work, and we were able to finally pay the payoff amount, which was about $1600. We finally OWN a beautiful, WORKING car. hehe And we have extra $$ every month.

I'm overjoyed. :)


Monday, August 14, 2006

Life is a Series of Illnesses

Okay, seriously. Y'all must be just as tired of me saying "I'm sick" as I'm tired of typing it. I can hear some of you grumbling out there, wondering if I'm shouting "wolf" or playing hookey. Or maybe I'm a hypochondriac? I dunno. :P

The sad truth is, I've been sick more times this year that I have in years past. I wonder why that is? Granted, in years past, I've been struck down by the harsher maladies, such as "Walking Pneumonia" and "Acute Labyrinthitis" (no snickering), however, 2006 seems to be "the year of the cold". Is there such a year on the Chinese calendar? Cause I think this is it.

I sometimes feel like that story in the Bible when Pharoah ordered the Israelites to make bricks without straw, but their daily quota of bricks could not diminish. Well, I'm not an "Israelite", but I'm a mom, and I don't make bricks, but I do the dishes/laundry/cleaning/schooling and I don't need straw, but I do need my health. LOL Perhaps that was a bad analogy. hehe But it's a sad fact that regardless of how you feel and how badly you want to curl up on the couch and rest, the world doesn't stop at your feet. :P

But my DH, sweetheart that he is, made dinner for the family tonight. Blueberry pancakes, complete with thick, crunchy bacon (the best kind) and whipped cream. It was yummy in my tummy and *almost* made the day bearable.

On a brighter note, I was able to bang out 10 more pages of the book I'm writing; the second in my B.E.A.S.T. trilogy. Woohoo!


Sunday, August 13, 2006

The Inevitable Truth About Cats

I don't know about you, but I'm a cat person. I always have been. I love dogs too, but for me, cats are where it's at. LOL I currently have two cats, and there's rarely been a time when I haven't had more than one.

But with all the cats I have owned in the past, one Absolute Truth has revealed itself to me.

Whenever two cats are bathing each other in a loving fashion, the love fest will ALWAYS, without fail, turn into a playful fight, and sometimes, not so playful.

Perhaps things are different with your cats. But this is a Truth I have seen for myself with the Goings's felines. Watch your kitties next time they love on each other. In about 15 seconds time, the fur will be flying, mark my words. :P


Saturday, August 12, 2006

I have been so lax lately on my personal blog!

For shame! :P I've either been too busy or too boring to blog anything. LOL Seriously, I don't lead a glamorous life at all. This past week, I've been writing my second BEAST book, and I just heard word that my Wolverine Chronicles have been accepted at Samhain Publishing! This is big news for me, because I've been lamenting the fact that they haven't been available anywhere for MONTHS. And readers are chomping at the bit to read the rest of the series.

The series has since been renamed to "LEGENDS OF MYNOS", because my editor thought that the "Wolverine Chronicles" sounded to much like an X-men episode. LOL I really love the name, because all three books follow the adventures of Mynos, the central dragon throughout the series.

A few other good reasons why I'm dancin' about being accepted at Samhain:

1. They offer advances for their books (Not previously published ones, tho. So I won't get an advance for WatR, but I will for the others. :D )

2. They pay royalties monthly instead of quarterly.

3. Their books are available in Border's and Waldenbooks, and they are actively seeking other stores to be stocked in.

4. They have a huge reader base.

I really believe this is going to help my career tremendously, so I've been basically all wrapped up in that lately.

So there you have it: Why I have been forsaking Becka's Babble for about a week. LOL


Monday, August 07, 2006

You Know You Have Carpal Tunnel When....

Your hands, wrists, and lower arms ACHE something fierce. You don't want to grasp anything with your hands. Bending your wrists can be painful. You're constantly massaging your lower arms.

Yup, I've got all the classic signs. Doesn't really surprise me much, the amount of typing I do in a given day. DH suggested I get one of those "natural" keyboards, the ones with the split keys so your hands can rest in a better position. At the moment, I'm seriously considering getting one. My arms have been aching ever since we cut up that damned Blackberry Bush from Hell over the weekend. *sigh*

The only saving grace I have is that my arms don't ache all the time. Only here and there. But I hope it goes away soon. I really don't like the stiffness in my hands. It messes with my typing speed. :P


Sunday, August 06, 2006

The Wild Blackberry Bush from Hell and Other Weekend Adventures

So DH and I did some yardwork this weekend, and cut back an evil (with a capital E) wild blackberry bush. It had been growing on the side of our fence for months, and only just now did we have the drive to go attack it. The thing was so out of control, that the branches (yes, branches) extended out into our backyard by many, many feet. Regardless of the fact that we were both wearing gloves, the blackberry bush and all of it's thorns fought us until the bitter end. Unfortunately, we were unable to uproot it, as the roots are firmly planted in the "gray zone", the space between our chain link fence, and the neighbor's wooden fence. So we predict we'll have to cut that beast back many times over the course of our lives. DH actually wants to get some bush killer to get rid of it once and for all. I hate those thorny bastards. LOL

Not only that, but we finally cleaned up our Fourth of July mess. Yes, we're so lazy that the tub of water we had for our festivities was still out there, full of spent fireworks cartridges. Lemme tell ya, ain't nothing fouler than smelling the pungent aroma of rotting sulpher. **shudders** Now I know what it must smell like in the Bog of Eternal Stench.

We went to Barnes & Noble today and amazingly enough, I didn't get any books. However, I did ask the lady behind the counter who I needed to talk with to get my books on their shelves. I was given a name and a phone number to call Monday - Friday, and hopefully I'll see something come out of this. That would be awesome. :)

For lunch, we went to Juan Colorado's, a seriously fabulous Mexican restaurant. We go there all the time and all the waiters know us and totally love our kids. It's great to go and eat good food and get great service. Not to mention the four cheers that lift into the air once the kids realized where we were going. LOL


Thursday, August 03, 2006

Ode to Phazyme

There once was a writer with no life
No victories, no accomplishments, no strife
Who thought she could blog
But got as sick as a dog
And now, she's a grumpy housewife.

The malady that made her kids pukey
has turned into a case of the dookies
on the porcelain throne she sits
cursing these damnable sh*ts
that forces her to play hookey.

Dear ones, our heroine is bad off
Some may laugh, some may scoff
But do not let it be said
that it's all in her head
or she's libel to rip your head off.


Wednesday, August 02, 2006

The Domino Effect

When you have kids, especially more than one, you are resigned to the fact that when one gets sick, the rest are soon to follow. I have four kids. So imagine how much an illness in my house must really rampage through my family members.

Welp, that's what happened.

As you may remember from the post below, my middle daughter had the pukey's a little while ago, the day before she was supposed to go on a sleepover to her aunt's house. Well, I sent my oldest child on the sleepover, since she wasn't sick. Guess what happened the next morning? You guessed it, pukeys at the relatives' house. Poor thing. She got it bad, too. Then the next day, my youngest daughter got the pukeys too, and forgot about the pot I gave her to sleep with. She decided the floor was a much better candidate.

Why do the fates mock me by making the pukeys strike at night time??

Then on Monday, they hit DH with a vengeance. He stayed home from work yesterday. Thankfully, neither myself or my son have gotten it **knock on wood**. I've already had pukeys this year. I hate the pukeys.

Thankfully, it seems to have run it's course. Hallelujah.