Swap-bot Time: June 21, 2021 11:20 am


Date Joined: September 10, 2008
Last Online: October 10, 2018
Birthday: October 6
Country: United States

About Me

I own my own business, Go Dog Go! Pet Care. It has been two years of learning how to be a business owner but I do love the dogs and what I am doing,

I write what I call fractured fairy tales or fables. I also write poetry and have been published in England although I was born in America. I was conceived while my parents were visiting relatives in England, so I like to say that I was British bred and American born.

I am first generation British American. I am married with three children, a grown daughter who lives in Chicago, a son who is in the Marines, married and stationed in Hawaii. And last but never least a 16 year old daughter who attends Tacoma's School of the Arts and is an amazing graphic artist.

We recently moved from an island in the Gulf of Alaska to a small town that has been surrounded by Tacoma, Washington. Ruston is still clinging to its identity as a village of 478 houses. That appeals to me.

We have gone through many changes in the past four years, moving from Kodiak to Ruston, my son going in the Marines, adjusting to life back in the lower 48. And the saddest changes, losing beloved family members. My beloved Belgian Tervuren named Griffin, sort of a large, gorgeous, long haired, pointy eared dog with a great sense of humour died right before my husband got laid off. We took on a rescue dog, Rorye, who was 12 years old at the time and was dumped at the animal shelter because she was "too old and no fun". Two months later she faced down a male Kodiak Bear for me. They are the largest land bears in the world and she is just a 40 pound Karelian Bear dog. After that I didn't care if she wasn't any fun because she saved my life. But the truth of the matter is, she is very affectionate and for 2 minute spurts will play. She never replaced Griffin for me in my heart, but then, they never are replacements, they always find their own niche. Griffin was a clown and an amazing dog. There will never be another one like him, just as there will never be another one like Rorye, who on August 22, 2016 turned 17, so much 'for too old, no fun and going to die soon anyway.'

I also have a Pomeranian, named Mrs. TiggyWiggle, (Tiggy for short) who thinks she is a large, gorgeous, long haired, pointy eared dog and has no sense of humour and is full of her own very important self. She is 13 years old now and has become the playground monitor at the local dog park and keeps all the other dogs in line by barking at them. And they all listen (not).

And then because life was not chaotic or fun enough, we have another Karelian Bear Dog, Tansy. She is now three years old, and is the epitome of the there once was a little girl who had a little curl...she learned how to climb up on the kitchen table before she was 4 months old and thought I should be proud of her, she could jump the fence in the backyard by the time she was 7 months and we spend a great deal of time reinforcing the fact that she is NOT the boss of anyone, including herself. She is high spirited, sweet tempered, fiercely loyal and protective. A dog attacked her best bud at the dog park, who is a 120 lb Rottweiler but a bit of a wuss, and Tansy threw herself into the fray to protect him. She knows no fear and has no limits.

We have our son's Siamese/Himalayan cross, Sweet Clementine who at 14 years is starting to slow down a bit but is a gorgeous, gorgeous girl. My daughter has a year old cat named Sushi, who is a maniac but provides a great deal of laughter in the household. Last but never least in my heart, Ivy Lucretia Lovestone, a petite cream coloured half Persian lady who does not like baths but loves cuddling. In fact, she was the one who chose me, and her name at the Animal Shelter. I walked past her cage and she latched onto me with her paws and wouldn't let go. When I opened the cage door to try to get her to let go, she simply clung tighter until I had to pick her up and then she buried her face in my shoulder. At that point my heart simply melted and Clinging Ivy came home with me. What choice did I have...

Crafts: Paper, I love the feel, smell and sound of paper. I also dabble in watercolors, chalk and pen. As well as altered books, collage, stamping and needlepoint. I love to make altered composition journals and altered art booklets. It justifies all the bits and pieces of paper, lace, broken jewelry and fabric that I have collected over the years.

Colours: Anything French Country or French Provencial. I love creams, blues and yellows for decor, but in my wardrobe tend towards deep garnet reds, browns, blues, greens and creams. I like muted colours of any type. I am not a big fan of neons or brights, although I have a friend who is trying to reform me. I lived through the 60's and 70's, incense burning, bell bottomed, long haired, flower powered hippie, once was enough. Lots of fun, but enough!

Things I like: I have collected China Cat figurines since I was 9 years old. I also collect teapots, creamers, etc in the shape of English country cottages. I love daisies, sunflowers, violets, irises, lilacs, hollyhocks and English Cottage Gardens. I like dragonflies, moths and bumblebees. Crows and foxes are also motifs that I like. My favorite artist is J.M. Strudwick who is a contemporary of J.W. Waterhouse, I also love Beatrix Potter and Mary Engelbreit illustrations. I have a friend who climbed over a railing and got a picture of David's butt when she was in Italy, so I am not opposed to Roman sculpture (yes, she got invited to leave the museum)

Favourite Stuff:

Books: M.M. Kaye, James Michner, C.S. Lewis, JRR Tolkien, Neville Shute, Jane Austen, Diana Galbadon's Outlander series. I collect children's books and love Hans Christian Anderson's stories and the Andrew Lang Fairy Tale Books. Grimm's Fairy Tales are just that, grim. The Diary of Anne Frank pierces my heart. Favorite poets are Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Kahlil Gilbran. Yes, I know, my tastes are rather eclectic.

I read the dictionary because I love words and their meanings and I read encyclopedias for the miscellaneous and other bits of knowledge and facts that are tucked between the covers. My kindergarten teacher told my parents that I was full of bits of general knowledge. Probably so...

Music: I play guitar and flute, my favorite song is Solveg's Song from the Peter Gynt Suite by Edward Grieg. I listen to Israeli folk music. French Cafe music. Celtic music. World War II era music as well as Sing Along with Mitch Miller. I also like Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young, Joni Mitchell, Joan Baez, Judi Collins and Rod Stewart.

Movies: Australia, Chocolat, Neverwas, The Kingdom of Heaven, Under the Tuscan Sun, LOTR, Chronicles of Narnia both of them, Elizabeth, Chariots of Fire, The Last Samurai, old 30's and 40's musicals as well as WWII flying movies. My father was a glider pilot for the RAF so I was raised on stories and movies like the Battle of Britain and 12 o'clock High. My dad thought Spam and ketchup sandwiches were wonderful, blech :-{ !!! My favorite actor of all time is Danny Kaye. My favorite actress is Katherine Hepburn.

TV shows: British TV including Midsomer Murders, All Creatures Great and Small, Rosemary and Thyme, Foyle's War, The House of Elliott, Inspector Lindley, the Sharpe's series (Sean Bean, Napoleonic Wars, good music and great scenery, what could be better) and Robin Hood, yet I never miss StarGate SG1 or Atlantis and I think Eureka is smart and funny, so I am not totally living in the past.

Edibles: My Nan lived in Yorkshire and every holiday season she would send boxes filled with chocolate and candies from England, Callard and Bowser butterscotch and licorice toffees, Cadbury chocolates and Smarties as well as Ginger marmalade and Lyle's Golden Syrup. I also have a weakness for maple sugar candy and MacIntosh apples. I love Chai tea as well as some herbal teas.

I love the smell of lavender, lilacs, violets, cinnamon, ginger, tarragon, basil, rosemary and oranges. My favorite spice is Nutmeg and I have an awesome recipe for nutmeg cake.

I don't like flowery perfumes or candles, it has to be the real thing or I get bad headaches but for some strange reason I have this incredible collection of candles shaped like fruit, I cannot explain how it happened but I have apple, pear, apricot, plum and even avocado shaped candles. One of those things that you don't realize you are doing until you start to list it on Swap-bot...

I am addicted to old costume jewelry, rhinestones and all, especially brooches/pins and dangly earrings.

Things I don't like: Put-down humour and mean spirited humour is not funny to me and can make me cry when I see or hear it, not because it offends me but because it is usually directed at someone and hurts them. I am not a modern kind of lady, nor do I like anything dark, gory, goth, scary, evil or mean type of things. My mother loved Edgar Allen Poe and so does my oldest daughter, but I am more of a Beatrix Potter/Pollyanna kind of gal. May have something to do with the fact that my parents took me to see Vincent Price in the Pit and the Pendulum when I was six years old, scarred (scared) me for life...I have a hard time watching Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds without major burying my head in the pillow sessions and I do not watch Stephen King or any type of horror movies.

Other stuff: I like Victorian ephemera, Art Deco, Arts and Crafts style. I do like Frank Lloyd Wright's Prairie Style because it is simply breathtaking in it's elegant simplicity and dream some day of decluttering and living in a Japanese style, clean-lined, austere, ordered house, not!

I love the alphabet in all types, fonts and sizes. As well as words, new words, old, fallen from use words, forgotten words, words 25 letters long in different languages. Did you know that one of the prettiest sounding words in any language is l'arc en ciel? It's rainbow in French, amazing, n'est pas? The prettiest sounding word in the English language is cellar door, it is a lyrical fluid sound, even if the meaning is not quite as pretty. Although a cellar door surrounded by vines and flowers could be very pretty visually.

Buttons, wooden spools of thread, and old game pieces, broken jewelry, stamps, pictures cut out of magazines, bits of ribbons, fabrics and lace. Silk embroidery thread.

Pictures of doors and windows or pictures of scenes with empty chairs in them. I like to imagine me, sitting in them, looking out over the beach, or garden...

I grew up in a small town in Western New York that, in my opinion is the prettiest town in America, beautiful landscapes, incredible architecture, just enough of each season, the one I like best being from late August through late November because of the fullness, richness and sense of completion during that time. Piles of pumpkins and baskets of apples at roadside stands, red maple leaves, Canadian geese overhead, huge orange harvest moons rising over the hills.

I miss western New York so much...ah well... to quote Joni Mitchell... don't it always seem to go that we don't know what we got til it's gone...

Stories-fractured or not

Because so many of you have asked or wondered where you could read one of my stories, I decided to put one of them on my profile. I may change them out every once in a while.

The Rescue - A Modern Fable

"This is not the way things were supposed to happen!" Zel fumed to herself "It is totally unfair. I did everything I was supposed to. I read the manuals, all of them from Lang's Fairy Tales, Black straight through the spectrum to White. I memorized all the relevant parts of the Brothers Grimm."

Zel checked her face in the mirror. Rosebud mouth - check. Limpid blue eyes - check. Pert, upturned nose - check. Milk white skin - check. Long golden blonde hair - check and check.

Zel recrossed her ankles, pushing the carefully packed valise to one side. She had considered thoughtfully what to pack - her best gown, suitable as a wedding dress, rolled and folded into a small bundle along with appropriate jewels and slippers. The valise was small enough to be fastened to a saddle without hindering either riders or horse in their flight through the forest.

"There was only one thing missing," Zel thought glumly to herself, "Prince Charming."

"But all the books said that if the damsel in distress was nice to the old crone at the well, cheerful while scrubbing floors, kind to the evil stepmother/witch and loving to all bears, frogs and birds then eventually the bear would shed its skin, the frog would change and Prince Charming would appear in all his broad shouldered, cleft chinned, dreamy eyed glory.

So far - zip, zilch, bupkis.

Zel had been waiting patiently in this forest without seeing or hearing bear, frog, bird or horse hooves coming to her aid. Her only visitor was the stereotypical evil and wicked.

E.W. showed up every Thursday afternoon like clockwork and every time just chortled to herself while gloating, "So my pretty, you are still here", and looking pointedly at the valise. E.W. brought the week's shopping, spent the regulation time brushing Zel's hair and then left saying, "See you next week, most likely."

It was very frustrating, Zel thought running her hands through her hair. "For two cents, I'd..."

Next Thursday when E.W. arrived groceries and hairbrush in hand she found a nicely lettered note dangling from a hair ribbon.

 Dear E.W. and/or P.C.;
  Got tired of waiting, I rescued myself.  You can keep the hair.  



Comment: Sorry for late reply, Life caught up with me for a second lol. Thanks so much for the letter. I have to read it now!
AZmom875 rated for Reading Challenge 2018-March on Apr 7, 2018
Comment: Great book review.
Lina279 rated for CALG; Seeds -Tea-Letter on Mar 26, 2018
Comment: Thanks!I love it!
LadyJo rated for CALG; Seeds -Tea-Letter on Mar 6, 2018
Comment: Thanks for everything! I will have to try the recipe you included in the letter. Sounds yummy!
pernie123 rated for WW: Does This Ring a Bell? on Feb 23, 2018
Comment: Thank you. I must look up Kodiak Island. Lots of information you gave me. I was waiting for something to happen. I re-read more slowly and loved what I learned. What a life, but I can see it was not always paradise. I like crows here, but your stories can't be topped by anyone. I did see pictures on computer.
Comment: Such a great Kitten Strong story! thank you
Response: Thank you a hundred thousand times for being so understanding. Yes, Justice is an amazing girl, we are privileged to know her.
Comment: Ayn ~ your swap was definitely worth the wait! Thank you so much for the uplifting message from my favorite author! And the quote coloring book was very awesome! I hope you are feeling better now! Have a great 2018! 🙂
Response: Today for the first time in a month I actually feel like myself. That flu was brutal. Thank you for your kindness in waiting. I am glad you like the quote, I like that one myself. I thought you might like the quote book. You have an awesome 2018 as well.
suepier rated for Swaps Classroom Valentine' swap on Jan 25, 2018
Comment: Thank you for the cute Valentine.
Response: You are welcome. Sorry for the late response, I had the flu.
Fabriqueen rated for Swaps Classroom Valentine' swap on Jan 18, 2018
Comment: Thank you so much for the sweet little puppy valentine! Hugs, Diane
Response: I love Vintage Valentines. Sorry for the late response, I had the flu.
kfaye rated for Swaps Classroom Valentine' swap on Jan 17, 2018
Comment: Thank you so much for addressing it to my daughter & her fiancé!!! They are going to be so happily surprised :D
Response: You are a sweet mama to arrange the surprise.
Lilpurplepig rated for Swaps Classroom Valentine' swap on Jan 16, 2018
Comment: Love vintage looking the Valentine. So unique.
Response: Yes, I know, those are the Valentines I use to send as a child, much better than Star Wars and Barbie I think.
pernie123 rated for This year I'm going to ... on Jan 16, 2018
Comment: I love the notecard, and I like your goal for the new year. Creative space is certainly a desirable goal.
Response: Thank you, here is to accomplishing all our goals.
Nserviam rated for This year I'm going to ... on Jan 15, 2018
Comment: Good luck this year!
Response: You as well.
jlink rated for Swaps Classroom Valentine' swap on Jan 15, 2018
Comment: thank you
Response: you are welcome
Comment: XOXO let's hope this comment makes its way to you! Happy swapping!
Response: You are so sweet, thank you for the hugs and heart.
brooklynbunch rated for Reading Challenge 2018-January on Jan 10, 2018
Comment: Thanks so much--it's sometimes surprising what can bring a tear to one's eye. I cry at the drop of a hat--saw "Darkest Hour," the movie about Churchill yesterday, and shed a tear. Susan (brooklynbunch)
Response: If you like literature and movies based on history then you will love these books. What Churchill went through would make me cry. I have been wanting to watch Darkest Hour.
junemoon rated for SWAPS Fall Diary on Dec 13, 2017
Comment: Thanks, it's neat little diary and I'm glad to know about TAcoma as daughter and I may spend a week in the NW next summer. Thanks too for the treasure of buttons.
Response: Thank you for being so gracious with your comments. Tacoma's only real claim to fame is the Glass Museum. Seattle is the place for sight seeing and I don't go over there but once a year.
jeufr27 rated for Reading Challenge 2017-November on Nov 30, 2017
Comment: Thanks for the book recs
wittmert rated for Reading Challenge 2017-September on Oct 1, 2017
Comment: Thanks - I bought A Quiet Life in the Country on Kindle to read on my upcoming trip.

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446 601 1 0
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CurlyTea on Oct 8, 2018:

Happy Birthday!

Megbomb on Jan 19, 2017:

Wow, thank you so much for angeling the November Reading Challenge! I love the journal and pen. I have never used a fountain pen before, I can't wait to figure out how to use it :) And the map, is so cool. I will definitely be adding Islandia to my must read list.

angelgram on Dec 2, 2016:

THX ♡ for ♡ RAK

Dear Ayn ᥡᥝᥔ âᥰᥱ š၀ th၀ᥔ၆htfᥭl ŧŏ ĥęŀρ ме ẁitħ ϻУ Ě Ĝ Qůёѕt -

My son and family left TN today in a moving truck to start their next chapter in WA. Well I know WA has some nice people -like you!! Never thought I might visit WA but

when I do- I've love to go look for the Dodo and have a cup of Mad Hat with my Fun Friend Ayn.

Got your RAK with the 3 bag set of Έαгℓ Ğŗέỵ & ĽǻđЎ ĢřєΫ & ᧗᧘Ð ÞÅríᦓ "tippy" Tea.

Fairytale & Tea Heaven & Ḩḁṕṕẏ Ḛṅḑḯṇḡ !!!!!!

THX ♡ for ♡ RAK

bjmonroe on Sep 22, 2016:

JeanetteC on Aug 26, 2016:

Thanks for sharing your story. All girls should be able to rescue themselves =o) Stay cool...washington is not supposed to be this hot!

RyeRye on Jun 23, 2016:

Thanks for joining Inspiration Station!

AmookIslandCreations on Oct 9, 2014:

Thinking of you and praying things get better soon! My son was stationed in HI for 6 years with the army and he and my DIL loved it. I am so sorry for the losses of Griffin and Rorye as well as Rosey! They are such an important part of our lives and teach so much about life and love. Hugs from Alaska, Sherry

anrtist on Sep 1, 2014:

zentangle by Mary Anne Durmin
I thought you would enjoy this!
Blessings, cc

LittleDonnaGirl on Jul 5, 2014:

I LOVE that quote too! I'd never heard it before! Thanks again for that quote . . . plus all the others . . . and the nice letter too. :o)

LittleDonnaGirl on Jul 5, 2014:

I am featuring one of the quotes you sent me on my profile. :o) Thanks again for those!

P.S. Loved reading your "fractured" fairytale on your profile!

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