Pizza Our Way #MondayMusings #OpenBookBlogHop #Inspiration

Welcome to another edition of Open Book Blog Hop. You can click here to participate in this week’s hop and read other bloggers’ responses. This week’s question is: “What toppings do you put on your pizza? Is pineapple a real pizza topping?”

Wow, what a question! Well, I like almost everything on my pizza, including pineapples. Yes, I think pineapples are a real topping. Like the vegetables on a pizza, they’re good for you.

My late husband Bill didn’t think so. He only wanted pizza with several different kinds of meat, cheese, and mushrooms. When I ordered pizza delivered from Domino’s, I asked for a pie with half extravaganza, which had everything, and half meat, cheese, and mushrooms. Since Bill only had the use of one arm and leg as a result of two strokes, it was up to me to divvy the slices. Because of my limited vision, I couldn’t always tell the difference between the two halves. Often, Bill took a bite and said, “Ooh, this is your half.”

We often went to an establishment that served individual pizzas. This worked a lot better because we could get what we wanted on our own pies. As long as the wait staff didn’t mix up our orders, there was no question as to whose pizza was whose. You can read more about our life together in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

Which toppings do you like on your pizza? What do you think about pineapple as a topping?

 

Abbie wears a blue and white V-neck top with different shades of blue from sky to navy that swirl together with the white. She has short, brown hair and rosy cheeks and smiles at the camera against a black background.Photo Courtesy of Tess Anderson Photography

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Two Pentacles Publishing.

 

 

 

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New! Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me

Copyright 2021 by Abbie Johnson Taylor.

Independently published with the help of DLD Books.

The cover of the book features an older woman sitting in a wicker chair facing a window. The world beyond the window is bright, and several plants are visible on the terrace. Behind the woman’s chair is another plant, with a tall stalk and wide rounded leaves. The woman has short, white hair, glasses, a red sweater, and tan pants. The border of the picture is a taupe color and reads "Why Grandma Doesn't Know Me" above the photo and "Abbie Johnson Taylor" below it.P

Photo Resize and Description by

Two Pentacles Publishing.

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?

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Staying Home #TMI Tuesday

This week’s questions aren’t nearly as raunchy. So, I’m giving them a shot and encouraging you to do the same.

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Favorite form of adult pajamas: Kimono, soft pant, romper or Winnie-the-pooh style?

 

When I was single, I had several pairs of pajamas I loved, some silk, others flannel, most of which my paternal grandmother gave me. When I got married, though, my late husband Bill didn’t want me wearing pajamas or socks to bed because he liked the feel of my bare legs and feet next to him in bed. His tune changed quickly when winter set in, and he felt my cold extremities against his warm ones. By that time, I’d given away all my pajamas, and the only pair I could find at Walmart was a pink print with a picture of Betty Boop on the top. But they were soft, warm, and comfortable, and that was all I needed. You can read more about Bill and me in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

What time do you wake-up in the morning?

 

My Amazon Echo smart speaker in the bedroom is set to start playing classical music at six thirty. So, I’m usually up no later than that. I’m often awake by five thirty and ready to go.

 

Your favorite chore to do is _____ .

Writing. I don’t consider it a chore at all. I love developing ideas in my head and putting them on paper, or, in my case, on a computer screen.

 

Least favorite chore to do is _____ . Why?

 

Cleaning. I hate it with a passion. I don’t know why. Fortunately, I can use the local senior center’s Help at Home program, which provides cleaning and other services that are subsidized according to income.

 

Tell us about a home-cooked meal that you cannot forget.

 

One night, I made enchilada casserole, one of Bill’s favorites. But somehow, while it was in the oven, the glass lid on the dish broke, embedding shards into the food. I didn’t realize this until I removed the casserole from the oven. I had to throw the whole mess out.

Then, there was a knock on the front door, and it was a pizza delivery that we hadn’t ordered. As my mother would have said, in gest, of course, if I’d been using my head, we would have had pizza for supper instead. Again, you can read more about our life together in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

 

Bonus: Is tired the new norm?

 

For me, absolutely not! I sleep well most nights, and in the morning, I hit the bedroom floor running.

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Now, it’s your turn. If you’d like to participate on your own blog, click here. Otherwise, you can answer one or more of the questions in the comment field below.

By the way, for those of you who use the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled, The Red Dress is available for download from their site here. No matter how you read it, please be sure to review it wherever you can. That goes for all my books. Thank you for stopping by. Stay safe, happy, and healthy.

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

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Let’s Do This #TMI Tuesday June 16 2020

Here are my answers to this week’s questions. After reading them, you can find out how to participate.

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1. What do you think are the best and worst parts of human nature? The best part is our willingness to help others. The worst part is our temper.

 

2. What is something terrifying that you have come to accept as a fact of life? Even now, in the 21st century, there are plenty of racists in the world. Some of them are police officers who would kill a man simply because he’s black.

 

3. What piece of media (book, movie, TV show, etc.) changed the way you viewed the world? How? When I was in college, I read Ellery Queen’s The Chinese Orange Mystery. Before that, I’d enjoyed Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden mysteries. So, I decided to try something of a more adult nature. This book takes place in the 1930’s when the police were more brutal than they are now.

For a while after reading it, I was terrified of policemen. Years later, this partly inspired my first novel, We Shall Overcome.

4. You must pick one:

– Facebook or Twitter? I prefer Facebook because there doesn’t seem to be a limit on how many characters you can post.

– Cake or Pie? I like cake because it usually doesn’t have a hard crust. But I love pizza, and if the crust’s too hard, I won’t eat it.
– Swimming or Sunbathing? I don’t do much of either one. On the rare occasions when I go to a beach, I usually walk in the water.

– Nice Car or Nice Home Interior? Since I don’t drive, I’ll take the nice home interior, please.

Bonus: If pressing a button meant you received five million dollars, (USD) but it also killed five people somewhere in the world, would you press it? This is a no-brainer. The lives of five innocent people are not worth five million dollars.

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Now, it’s your turn. Click here to learn how to participate. Alternatively, you can answer one or more of the questions in the comment field below. Any way you do it, I look forward to reading your answers.By the way, my latest book The Red Dress, is now available from the National Library Services for the Blind and Print Disabled website. If you use this service, click here.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

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An Italian Meal Without Wine #Poetry

The following poem comes from my collection, How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver. If you click on the title, you’ll hear me recite it, then sing a Dean Martin classic about how Italians perceive love as it relates to food. I performed this combination last week during a virtual poetry event sponsored by Behind Our Eyes, and since that was such a success, I thought I’d post it here. Enjoy!

 

An Italian Meal Without Wine

I love to eat seafood fettuccini Alfredo,
taste the shrimp, crab, scallops
in a rich, creamy sauce
on a bed of fettuccini noodles,
slurp the noodles into my mouth,
savor the flavor,
garnish it with garlic bread,
chase it down with water.

 

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By the way, for the next month, My Ideal Partner and The Red Dress are available on Smashwords as part of its sale to support those isolated by the coronavirus. This sale will run until the end of May. Please click here to visit my Smashwords author page and download these books. As always, thank you for reading.

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

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That’s Amore #Monday Musical Memories

When I was little, I didn’t like pizza or any other finger food. But by the time I was ten, my taste had changed. Mother often heated frozen pizzas for my younger brother and me. I liked the large pies she cut into triangular slices. Until I was an adult, I didn’t eat the crust unless it was soft, which it often wasn’t.

Those frozen pizzas weren’t nearly as good as those we ate at Shakey’s Pizza Parlor. In 1974, after my family moved from Tucson, Arizona, to Sheridan, Wyoming, a restaurant in that chain opened here. This establishment had a stage with a piano and a microphone. But unlike in the one in Tucson, nobody played it or sang until one night when my family ate there.

By that time, I was twelve, and I’d started playing the piano and singing at home. I don’t know whose idea it was, but I found myself at that piano. After Dad walked me up there and made sure the microphone was working, I began. At first, I was nervous, but after a bit, it was as if I was in our living room with only my family listening. Apparently, others in the restaurant were also listening because I received plenty of applause. I played several songs before returning to our table.

When the manager came over, I thought he was going to kick us out. But instead, he presented me with a pitcher of Coke. Thus, my singing career began, such as it was.

My late husband Bill also liked pizza. But unlike me, he was finicky about what went on it. He only wanted meat, cheese, and maybe a few mushrooms. I, on the other hand, have always enjoyed pies with everything on them except for anchovies and jalapeno peppers.

When Bill and I often ordered pizzas delivered from Domino’s, we got a medium-sized half and half pie with one half meat, cheese, and mushrooms, and the other half with everything. Because of my limited vision, I sometimes got the two halves confused. Bill would take a bite of a slice I gave him and say, “Ooh, this is your half.” You can read more about how I became Bill’s caregiver after he suffered two strokes in My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds.

Now that Bill is gone, I rarely order pizza from Domino’s. Another establishment here in town called Powder River Pizza delivers personal pies, so I occasionally order one of them.

I also like frozen individual pizzas from Schwan. I realized that the pizzas Mother prepared were cooked in the oven too long. So, I heat one Schwan single-serve supreme pizza for only two minutes in the microwave. Some might find the crust too soggy, heated this way, but for me, it’s just right.

The song I’ll sing for you today compares love to pizza and other things. I didn’t know it when I entertained at Shakey’s, but it’s one I’d sing if I ever had another chance to perform in a pizza joint.

That’s Amore

 

How about you? What do you remember about pizza growing up? What do you like on your pie now? October is National Pizza Month, so I hope you’ll have an opportunity to enjoy some this month.

 

 

New! The Red Dress

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.

***

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