Green's Hill-Amy Lane's Home - News

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Car Drama in Three Acts

 So I'll be honest--our lives got a little busy in the last week and I haven't blogged in a bit. Of course, in the last week, we've had a couple of fun things. An old friend from high school came to visit, and I found the perfect chicken and waffles venue--after a lot of hard searching, believe me. (It's a chain--Country Waffles--and I'm now a fan.) 

And the visit with the old friend was lovely. What was funny was that when I was leaving the house to take her to her sister's house, Mate said, "I'll come with you." He'd been working and was a little stressed about it, so I was surprised. But after we dropped her off (and I was so happy for the opportunity to visit!) he said, "Thanks for letting me come along. We just haven't talked in forever!" Which was nice--and true. I just love that when you're older, a car date is a chance to be alone with someone so you can have a one on one conversation--now THAT'S sexy! Anyway--after that, he said, "So, what do you want to do about tomorrow?"

To which I answered, "What's tomorrow?"

And he said, "Now see, that's where I was at about four hours ago."

And I said, "Wait, what's tomorrow?"

"Now that's where I was at an two hours ago."

"What is tomorrow? Is tomorrow something?"

"We're getting closer..."

"Oh my God!" I cried, feeling stupid. "It's our anniversary!"

"And that's what hit me about an hour ago. Should we do anything?"

"I went to Target to get Father's Day cards for you, and I forgot about our anniversary."

"Well, I haven't been to Target, and I'll be honest--I don't see it happening."

I sighed. "I'll be honest--the trip to San Francisco we're taking on the 26th--I've been conflating that with our anniversary. Is it okay if we just kiss each other and be glad we're together tomorrow, and save our money for the trip?"

"And now we're on the same page."

Which reminds me--we're leaving tomorrow mid-morning, with an adult child at home with the teenagers, and I'm soooo looking forward to it.

And now for Car Drama in 3 acts. Father's Day.

Act I, S1, in which my stepmom calls us up and asks if we can bring Big T and ZoomBoy to her house on Father's Day because she and my dad are moving furniture because unlike us, their house is being kept nice and they're redecorating.

Act I, S2, We ask Chicken to pick her brother up, because HIS car drama is well documented here, and she agrees. Oh, thank God, we say to ourselves. That is one leg of the Citrus Heights to Sacramento to Loomis triangle that we do NOT have to participate in. *fakes laughter* Oh, if we only knew.

Act I, S3, in which Chicken calls us up and says, "I'm at my brother's, but my car is acting up. Can you come get us?"  Oh. Well. Shit. 

Act I, S3, in which Mate says, "If it's still running, Chicken and I will drive it back to Chicken's apartment, while you two follow us to make sure we get there."  And the tension is building.

Act II

Act II, S1--Meanwhile, in Chicken's vehicle, just as they're getting off the freeway at Auburn Blvd. 
Mate: Wow--that knocking noise is getting worse. I'd say it was overheating, but your temperature gauge appears to be pretty cold. Wait... *remembers it's 104 outside*
Chicken: Yeah, that's broken.
Mate: Oh shit--
Car: Starts pouring out steam from blown radiator.

Act II, S2--Meanwhile, in my car, just as we're getting off the freeway at Auburn Blvd.
Me: Oh shit, traffic's really bad here. What's blocking the corner of the intersection?
Big T: Looks like a car's broken down. Ugh, I hate to be that person in the broken down car.
Me: So does your sister.  
Big T: Oh no...

Act II, S3--In which we leave Chicken to deal with the tow truck to her apartment and take her dog with us, because we figure we'll be picking her up there after the tow truck arrives.


Act III, S1. In which Chicken calls us up and tearfully begs out of Father's Day festivities in Loomis, and then asks if we can bring her dog back.

Act III, S2. In which three out of four kids--and three out of four dogs--load up in the back of the Honda Odyssey so we can go backwards, drop off the dog, and then go to Loomis, with a stunning 100 miles under the Odyssey's belt just dealing with car drama. Mate and I make tentative plans to devote my July paycheck to Chicken's car, since June's has gone toward Big T's.

Act III, S3--The ironic twist: The kids sweat like iced tea pitchers at a summer picnic the entire way to Loomis because--you guessed it--the A/C in the back of the car isn't working, and we have to wait for the cycled air to cool down. It seems we've been paying for the kids' cars so much that our own is not necessarily in prime condition.

And... Finis.

Monday, June 14, 2021

So there was a lot of that and some this...

 Wow. I had to do Kermit Flail, and I really don't set aside a lot of time for blogging, but, well, there's been some shit!

A. You all saw that Big T graduated--YAYAYAYAYAAY! And then ZoomBoy graduated--YAYAYAYAYAY!!! *breathe in, breathe out* WHEW. Lots and lots of stuff going down with both those things--I've been a bit busy, yeah? Anyway-- for those who posted the nice things by ZB's graduation picture? Thank you. We really are proud. It's the beginning of things--he's starting to see how much he has to look forward to, and that's fantastic.

B. So, about grad-night...  Tuesday night was grad-night, and Mate and I saw that, on paper, they didn't have a lot of chaperones. We foolishly jumped into what is, traditionally, a big clique puddle to volunteer. Grad-night was 10:00 pm - 4:00 am at the local Sunsplash--and usually, in June, this is a great thing. I mean, we've got a couple of days coming that are going to be 109 and don't tell me we all wouldn't give our nana's chili recipe to be out in the water in the middle of the night. Except--and this happened during BOTH the teenager's 6th and 8th grade graduation trips--one of which was to, you guessed it, SunSplash--there are some freak days in June that top out in the 70's and bottom out in the low 50's, and grad-night was one of them. All of these teenagers running up to the slide towers, sliding down and then running up again in the wind--I felt like we should have handed out little first-aid brochures to the boys assuring them that their testicles would reappear sometime in the following week and telling the girls not to get too close to glass. It was COLD. And our job was to do loops around the facility--for real? I'd clocked in about 7,500 steps when I got there, and by the time I went home at 1:30, I'd clocked in another 7,500, and I'm not a 10,000 step a day sort of girl. I was tired for three days--and Mate claimed his core temp didn't return until two days later. So we did that. ZoomBoy loved it--loved it ALL--and we were really glad he got to go. We were also glad they served pizza, because it was WARM.

C. So, Big T got a driver's license and an SUV. The SUV, like everybody's first car, has some glitches. In this case, his SUV stalls for no reason at all, and Big T has had traffic mishaps. He keeps trying to push the thing by himself. The first time, he lost control of it and it dented a homeless man's apartment. The second time, T  tried to push it up an overpass, the thing started to go backward, pulled T with it, and as it was dragging him down the hill, it T-boned another car. *sigh* And I know it's going to be a huge headache for him, but mostly? I'm just THRILLED IT HASN'T BEEN WORSE. His father and I are having lots of, "Stay in the car and hit the hazard lights and wait until it turns over again," conversations. Also? DON'T DRIVE ON THE FREEWAY!!!! And part of me is like, "Your parents turned you loose in a tin can that looked like a sock full of rocks after your first two years driving--he'll be fine," but 80% of me is, "MY BABY!!!!!!!" So, uhm, he's 28 and I'm still worrying. It never goes away.

D. Had breakfast with a friend on Friday morning because she was in town for a very short amount of time. This was notable only because, well, we're coming out of a pandemic and I haven't done something like this for over a year. Boy, I was glad to see my friend--lunch with friends is one of the things I really missed.

E. In that vein, we watched a movie in our driveway, with pizza. We'll do it again. We had friends over. Summer is here, and movies in the driveway with pizza should be a requirement at least twice a month. It was an Annabelle movie--for some reason I've got a soft spot for that franchise--I'm usually not into horror, but some movies, I can watch.

F. This isn't a big part of my income--but it is part and I'm proud of it. I've been teaching--one or two classes a month--for the last year. I've mentioned them before, but I realized that it's gotten to be a really regular part of my job, and I'm happy. <3

G. Finished a Christmas novella for the first time in a while, so I'll have one this year. Woohoo!!!!

H. Started Dante and Cully's Hedge Witch book--which I'll be working on when I sign off!

G'night everybody!

Monday, June 7, 2021

Kermit Flail, Long Hot Summer Edition!


Okay, so I'll be honest-- I had two children graduate in the last two months, one from high school and the other from college, and I am PSYCHED. Just in time for a long hot summer, I am celebrating that two of my offspring are doin' okay and a lot of my friends have new releases, and that is sweet to hear!

Let's start with the inimitable R.L. Merrill, who is rereleasing an anthology story. Now R.L. is a diehard rock fan, and she's known for her angst--so those you who loved Beneath the Stain might want to check out this story--and then get hooked on the rest of her work!

I Want More (Rerelease)

by R.L. Merrill

Hotshot music producer Morrison Jones has been hired by legendary metal god, Aldous Archer, to record his comeback album—and he insists Morrison work with his former best friend turned nemesis. Leland Elliott swore he’d never step foot onstage with Morrison ever again, but time—and being stuck in a studio together for a week—has a way of healing wounds. Will the stars align for the former bandmates? Welcome to Bolder Breed Studios.

Previously part of the Love Is All Volume 3 anthology (2020)

Buy Here

Moving on to Andrew Grey, who cut his teeth on the rural setting and is in fine form now with Nowhere to Ride!

Nowhere to Ride

by Andrew Grey

Unjustly accused of a crime, Ky Archer is trying to keep his ranch together, with fierce tenacity and minimal help. With his nefarious accuser the lead wolf at the door, Ky is resolved to do whatever he has to in order to keep the final link with his family intact.

Brodie Tyler is down on his luck--way down. Down enough to camp with his baby sister in a tent to get away from relatives he’d hoped would help him. His parents are gone and he's got nowhere to go, but he’s determined to keep his sister safe with him, no matter what.

Ky finds Brodie and Emily on his property and takes them in out of the storm… literally. Neither expects the heat that ignites between them to be as hot as the western sun. The men find they fit together well, both at work and in the bedroom. They also find they have a common enemy who tries to tear them apart. Working together, they might discover that each holds the key for the other’s desire.

Buy Here 

Kim Fielding changes easily from contemporary to paranormal and urban fantasy to mystery/suspense, and in Fairview, we have Kim's charming and melancholic magic at its best!


by Kim Fielding

Ravaged by a horrific experience, Oliver Webb flees the smog-bound city of Greynox for a quiet seaside village and the inheritance he’s never seen: a cottage called Farview. He discovers clear skies, friendly imps, and a charming storyteller named Felix Corbyn.

With help from Felix’s tales, Oliver learns surprising secrets about his family history and discovers what home really means. But with Felix cursed, Oliver growing deathly ill, and an obligation in Greynox hanging heavy around his neck, it seems that not even wizards can save the day.

Still, as Felix knows, stories are the best truths and the most powerful magic. Perhaps the right words might yet conjure a chance for happiness.

Jaime Samms is known for her crystalline prose and painful angst--and for Mildred, her sentient house in Griffon's Elbow! This looks like another sweet venture into magical realism--and another encounter with Mildred and perhaps a kindred house spirit!

Brother's Keeper

by Jaime Samms

If blood really is thicker than water, are the ties that bind a found family stronger than the ties of blood?

After a decade of homelessness and living off his own wits, Tris has lost all faith in the kindness of strangers. And after years of letting his friends down time after time, Ozzy knows he’s the last person anyone should count on.

When Tris’s search for his lost younger brother lands him in a small town at an overly-friendly Bed and Breakfast, everyone, including the B and B herself, seem to be pushing Tris and Ozzy together.

Tris learned a long time ago, under the fists of his manipulative step-father, that family can’t be trusted, and love means nothing. Torn between the desire to see Tris thrive in his new home, and the need to protect the very younger brother Tris came looking for, Ozzy has some hard choices ahead.

Welcome back to Griffon's Elbow and The Oaks B&B, aka Mildred. She's not the only sentient house in town.

Buy Link 

Ashlyn Kane and Morgan James write quirky, happy romance with sparkling dialog and adorable heroes--they took a bit of a break from pubbing, but it's great to see them back with the B&N most anticipated book of the month!

String Theory

by Ashlyn Kane and Morgan James

For Jax Hall, all-but-dissertation in mathematics, slinging drinks and serenading patrons at a piano bar is the perfect remedy for months of pandemic anxiety. He doesn’t expect to end up improvising on stage with pop violinist Aria Darvish, but the attraction that sparks between them? That’s a mathematical certainty. If he can get Ari to act on it, even better. Ari hasn’t written a note, and his album deadline is looming. Then he meets Jax, and suddenly he can’t stop the music. But Ari doesn’t know how to interpret Jax’s flirting—is making him a drink called Sex with the Bartender a serious overture? Jax jumps in with both feet, the only way he knows how. Ari is wonderful, and Jax loves having a partner who’s on the same page. But Ari’s struggles with his parents’ expectations, and Jax’s with the wounds of his past, threaten to unbalance an otherwise perfect equation. Can they prove their double act has merit, or does it only work in theory?

And speaking of Ashlyn Kane! Her book Fake Dating the Prince is on sale for $.99 on Amazon, and at that price, it's definitely worth checking out! 

The Long Con

by Amy Lane

Mass Market Paperback Edition is out on July 6th!!!

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Origami Granny Hexagon Jacket

 Okay-- so I've been trying to explain this for weeks, and this time I'm going to try pictures.

I'm making a Granny Hexagon sweater.

This is magic. 

See, if you make a granny square, it has 4 90 degree corners. It lays flat. But if you make a Granny Hexagon--and don't compensate for the corners by using fewer stitches--you end up with 6 90 degree corners, for a total of 540 degrees, and it doesn't lay flat. 

In fact, it looks like a deformed sad little starfish thing that will never lie flat and will be laughed at by its friends.

So sad. Do we feel sorry for it yet? 

And look how tiny it is!

Why, you'd have to go around and around and around a LOT to make that starfish thing amount to anything interesting.

​But what could it amount to?

Well, here's the fun part. If you fold this tiny little starfish thing, it makes a very interesting shape. 

IN fact, it makes a little half-a-tee. Do you see that? But it's got some open seams. If you sew along the top edge there--not the whole thing, mind you--you will have an arm, and, well, half a body.

And that may not seem like a lot--I mean, look at it. It's tiny. But imagine you made one of those and went around and around and around with some slightly thicker yarn... you would have a GINORMOUS granny hexagon.

And then when you folded THAT one in half--the right way, corner to corner at both ends--you would have a much larger half a T--or, half a kimono shaped sweater.

And then, if you had two of them, you could sew the arm seams at the top and one seam along the back, and you'd have a very square-shaped jacket.

Or, you could sew the one seam in the back and the one in the front and have a very basic jumper.

Or, you could sew the seam in the back and add some flaps on the front and some length and have a much more formidable jacket, and then add a hood, and, hey, a few rounds to tighten up the sleeves a little, and it would have a much different shape.

But the point is, here, that you take a sad little starfish shape and keep working on it, and it could become a sweater of generous proportions.

And that's what I've been working on of late.