-Christmas Morning Anticipation #TuesdayTidbit #Excerpt #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

 

 

 

Here’s another teaser from my latest book, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, which you can now download from Smashwords absolutely free until December 31st. See below for details. This little scene was published in the current issue of The Writer’s Grapevine, which you can read here. It’s Christmas morning, and sixteen-year-old Natalie and her ten-year-old sister Sarah, along with their dog and grandparents, eagerly wait for their parents to get out of bed, so they can open their stockings.

***

Chapter 30

 

Natalie

 

The next morning, Sarah shook me awake before it was light. “Natalie, wake up. It’s Christmas! Let’s see what’s in our stockings!”

“You know we can’t do that. We have to wait until everybody’s up. That’s the rule.”

Footsteps sounded in the hall, and someone tapped on the door.

“Come in,” we said.

The door opened, and Grandpa stuck in his head. “Grandma’s making hot chocolate. You girls might as well come down.”

“Are Mom and Dad up yet?” I asked.

“No, not yet, so be quiet.”

We put on our robes and slippers. Squeakers jumped out of his bed and wagged his tail. Sarah picked him up. “Come on, Squeakers. We put a stocking up for you. Let’s see what Santa brought!”

In the living room, as we did every year, Sarah and I gazed in wonder at the blinking lights on the Christmas tree, the packages underneath it, and the bulging stockings hanging above the fireplace. Grandpa was in one of the armchairs, his nose buried in a newspaper.

I noticed a box on the mantle above my stocking with a note pinned to it. I walked over to take a closer look.

Without lowering the newspaper, Grandpa said, “Don’t you dare! Sit down, and let’s wait for your parents.”

“I’m just looking,” I protested. I spotted a brand name on the side of the box. “Olympus! It’s a camera!”

Grandpa lowered the newspaper. “Why don’t you girls go see if your grandmother needs help with the hot chocolate?”

“Okay,” said Sarah, turning toward the kitchen. “Squeakers probably needs to go out, anyway.”

I reluctantly followed her out of the living room.

A few minutes later, we were all sitting in the living room, drinking hot chocolate. Sarah and I were on the couch with Squeakers between us, and Grandma and Grandpa were across from us in armchairs.

***

Now, I have one exciting event to announce, and I hope you’ll be able to take advantage of it. Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me, The Red Dress, and My Ideal Partner are now absolutely free as part of the Smashwords end-of-year sale, which will run until December 31st. You can click here for more information and to download these books.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

Nature’s Call #Fiction #TuesdayTidbit #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

NATURE’S CALL

by Abbie Johnson Taylor

Copyright 2021

 

Being a lady, I should be more modest, but I’m not. When I need to squat, it doesn’t matter where I go, on the lawn, on the sidewalk, even in the street if I’m there long enough. Most of the time, I’m not because when I wander into traffic, my humans yell, “Maud, get out of the street.”

They tell this story about Ed. He got me from a man who called me Old Glory because I was born on the Fourth of July. I hated that name and the fireworks on my birthday that always sent me scurrying into the bathtub for cover. So, I was relieved when Ed decided to call me Maud instead.

Anyway, during family road trips, when he was driving, even in broad daylight, he would sometimes say, “Piss call.” Then, he’d pull the car to the side of the road, jump out, and do his business right there. So, that’s me. When you gotta go, you gotta go.

One day, I was walking along with Ed and his daughter Abbie, who lived in an apartment across town. I suddenly had to go, and I spotted a beautiful green lawn. Being off leash, I scampered onto the grass and did my business, just as the front door opened. The woman who stepped onto the porch and greeted Abbie turned out to be her boss at work. Fortunately, Abbie didn’t lose her job over this, but I wouldn’t have cared one way or the other. When you gotta go, you gotta go.

Once, I relieved myself indoors. It happened after Abbie told me she was moving to a different apartment complex where dogs wouldn’t be allowed to visit unless they were service animals. I thought I’d served her well over the years. I’d chased the white ball at the end of the stick she sometimes rolled along in front of her when she walked. I’d licked her face when she was sad and moved into the back seat when Ed picked her up so she could ride in front with him. Apparently, that didn’t qualify me as a service dog.

Abbie explained that this apartment complex would be better than where she was living now because there would be laundry facilities, and the apartment would have a shower, not just a bathtub. Also, there was a garbage chute on each floor. So, she would no longer need to slip slide through the alley to empty the trash. I wagged my tail as if I understood, but I didn’t.

The next day, while Ed was helping Abbie move stuff out of the old apartment, I had to go, and I wasn’t about to wait until I could get outdoors like I should have. I delivered a nice surprise on her dining room carpet, and it wasn’t pee. Abbie stepped in it. That’s what she got for trading a lovable Irish setter for laundry, a shower, and a trash chute. When you gotta go, you gotta go.

***

The above is a fictionalized account of events involving the Irish setter my father had while I was working as a registered music therapist with nursing home residents. It appears in the current issue of The Writer’s Grapevine. I wrote it during a meeting of my local poetry group, believe it or not. We were prompted to write a poem about what goes on inside an animal’s head. Well, as I’m sure you now realize, my poem metastasized into a short story. You can click here to read this and other wonderful work in The Writer’s Grapevine.

 

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

Wake up Daddy by Trish Hubschman #WordPressWednesday #Reblogs #Inspiration

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

I can’t think of a better way to start a Wednesday than to read this heartwarming post by author Trish Hubschman, as it appears on fellow blogger Patty Fletcher’s site. If you have a dog, I’m sure you’ll be able to relate to this.

Trish has published a series of mystery novels involving a private eye and a rock star. After reading her story, you’ll be able to learn more about her books. I hope today’s post warms your heart and puts a smile on your face.

***

It’s between four and six in the morning. Henry is on his pillow on the floor. He’s restless. I can hear him jingling the tags on his collar. “Hey, boy, what’s up? “I whisper as he jumps on our bed.

 

Read the full post on Patty’s Worlds.

Playing Ball with the Dog #SixSentenceStoryThursdayLinkUp #Excerpt

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.

At the park, we took turns throwing the ball for Squeakers, who never tired of retrieving it and bringing it back to us. I got some good pictures of him and even made a little video of him barking at a squirrel he’d chased up a tree.

“Sarah will love this,” I said when I showed it to the others.

“Last night,” said Grandpa, “the way you said that Miss Sarah had appendicitis, I thought you were going to be a doctor. But you’d also make a pretty good photographer.”

“Last night, you said you wanted to be a writer,” said Grandma.

***

So, is Natalie’s diagnosis of Sarah’s condition correct? Why did she tell her grandmother she wanted to be a writer? You’ll find the answers to these questions in my new novel, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me.

Thanks to Girlie on the Edge for inspiring the above excerpt with her six-sentence story prompt for this week. You can participate in this week’s hop and read other bloggers’ six-sentence creations by clicking here.

***

New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

Front cover image contains: elderly woman in red sweater sitting next to a window.

Sixteen-year-old Natalie’s grandmother, suffering from dementia and confined to a wheelchair, lives in a nursing home and rarely recognizes Natalie. But one Halloween night, she tells her a shocking secret that only she and Natalie’s mother know. Natalie is the product of a one-night stand between her mother, who is a college English teacher, and another professor.

After some research, Natalie learns that people with dementia often have vivid memories of past events. Still not wanting to believe what her grandmother has told her, she finds her biological father online. The resemblance between them is undeniable. Not knowing what else to do, she shows his photo and website to her parents.

Natalie realizes she has some growing up to do. Scared and confused, she reaches out to her biological father, and they start corresponding.

Her younger sister, Sarah, senses their parents’ marital difficulties. At Thanksgiving, when she has an opportunity to see Santa Claus, she asks him to bring them together again. Can the jolly old elf grant her request?

***

Books

My Amazon Author Page

Facebook

Website

 

 

Does Your Dog Have Frito Feet? #FridayFinds

Do your dog’s feet smell like corn chips? Have you ever wondered why? Well, the post I’m sharing today has a most fascinating answer. Enjoy, and have a great weekend!

Commonplace Fun Facts

Why do dog’s feet smell like fritos or corn chips?

If you were to create a list of smells associated with dogs, it would likely range from the pleasant scent of a recently-bathed, freshly-groomed pet to the less-pleasing aromas that belong outside. Somewhere in that mix, did you include the fragrance of corn chips?

That’s right — corn chips. Specifically, corn chip-scented feet. That may seem quite odd, but it isn’t at all uncommon. Many people take a whiff of Fido’s feet and wonder if the dog has been treading in a pile of Frito corn chips.


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