I gave #Keto a Veto and Other Stupid Ramblings

Eight whole days…almost nine!

No bread. No pasta. No to a whole bunch of things actually.

Somehow, for the past eight days, I’ve managed quite easily to live with less than 50 carbs a day. I figured I’ve tried a lot of diets in my adult life post children and the only thing that ever worked was less calories. This was something I hadn’t tried yet so I figured what the heck?

In a world where I can step out of the shower and ten minutes later be standing in a pool of my own sweat in a 70 degree house, and just gaze into the creamy deliciousness of a gelati and gain five pounds…you get the picture, just cutting calories wasn’t cutting anymore.

menopause

I try to stay active but since my daughter and granddaughters moved out a year ago, I’ve gained thirty pounds. THIRTY POUNDS.

I still look pretty good and it’s not as if my 5’6″ frame can’t handle it but I’m feeling the effects of the weight more and more now. My knee hurts more, I get winded more easily and although I know this new waistline is par for the menopausal course, that doesn’t mean I have to live with it for the rest of my life.

Back to the Keto…

I was doing great. I wasn’t even craving carbs at all! Every day I could see them fading in my rear view mirror…that was until last night. As I headed up to bed, I felt woosy and light headed and yet noticed a headache coming all at once. I hurried into bed and fell asleep but not before experiencing a bit of heart palpitations that I’ll admit, scared me a bit.

Then this morning, it hit. There’s this thing they call the Keto flu. Basically, your body feels like you have the flu. I had a headache, body aches and all over lethargic feeling. I hurriedly Googled the side effects of Keto and bam, there it was.

According to the article I linked above, symptoms can last about a week or more. So now I need to ask myself if this is worth seeing through. I’m taking into account my age, menopause and the fear that I may be one of the unlucky folks who takes a lot longer to detox from carbohydrates. I’m not sure what to do yet but so far, in just eight days my body has already started going through a transition that I like aesthetically if not physiologically. I’ll wait and see and if this keeps up, I’m back to calorie counting. I’ll still keep my carbs low but not like I have been. I’m not trying to injure myself to lose that 30lbs.

Next rambling…so, if you haven’t read any of my Ancestry blogs, Here’s a link to one. I had such incredible success with my maternal grandfather’s side that I was spoiled for the real hard stuff. I also decided I want to dig deeper into the DNA history so I sent of a test to Geno 2.0. It’s a much more in depth test and will even give you your Neanderthal percentage if you have any. Since 99% of my DNA comes from Europe, I’m fairly certain I have some Neanderthal. Did you know it is pronounced Ne-an-der-tal? It is indeed.

So, with my maternal grandfather Russ’ pedigree being so major, and all the incredible ancestors I have on that side, it still hurts and shocks me that his kids and grandchildren etc. who know I exist, still want nothing to do with me. Every time I check my DNA matches, there’s my uncle Jack and my cousin Jackie who obviously want no parts of me. I mean, what’s not to love? I’m smart, kind, successful and not half bad looking…even with the extra 30lbs…but seriously. What makes people act like this?

I know my grandfather was this big famous band leader, musician and writer, and never legally acknowledged my mother…his love child…but that was 95 years ago! They’ve denied it all my life and now, even when presented with actual DNA evidence, they still reject any contact with me or my family. I could see if I was like Trailer Trash Tammy or something but we’re good, honest, decent, down to earth people. I definitely don’t want anything from them and neither does the rest of my family. I guess some people prefer living a comfortable lie than an inconvenient truth.

Their loss…but it still hurts and probably always will. 

Maybe someday I’ll write a book about it all…

I still want a cat.

My thirteen year old kitty passed back in March. I think I’m over the grieving process for him (gone too soon) because recently I’ve been obsessing over searching for a new best friend. He was so beautiful and sweet I’m afraid I’ll fall in love with some kitty and I’ll end up on that TV show My Cat From Hell. My husband isn’t ready yet. He keeps telling me no way but yes way. It’s going to happen. A house is not a home to me without a fur baby in it.

My Kitty

Well that’s about it for tonight. The evil Keto Flu is kicking my butt.

Nighty Night…zzzzz

Peg

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#Vacations | Big Game #Fishing | #BreastCancer Research

There I go. Off living life again and this time, it was a two for one trip. Another Fantastic Voyage in the books!

It’s no secret I love the beach…the ocean…my family…my friends…margaritas and about a billion other things but checking off a bucket list item is always on the table. I don’t necessarily go hunting down bucket list items but when they become available, with the added cherry on top to do it for charity, hell yeah I’m in!

Poor Girls Open

About a year ago, my sister in law, Kim, came to me with an opportunity to take a fishing charter out of Ocean City, MD to fish for big game…like, BIG fish way out in the Atlantic ocean. Every year there is a tournament called The Poor Girls Open that has been going on for 25 years.

From the web site:

The Poor Girls Open is a ladies only billfish release tournament benefiting breast cancer research. There are also added entry levels for tuna and dolphin. This tournament was started by Capt. Steve Harman as a way for local waitresses and bartenders to have an affordable and fun competition while raising money for a very important cause. The tournament continues to grow with over 100 boats entering. Participation is not limited only to anglers as there are silent auctions, 50/50 tickets, T-shirts for sale, and other fun events helping to raise money for breast cancer research. In the past 3 years alone, the Poor Girls Open has raised over $100,000 that was donated to the American Cancer Society.

Unfortunately last year, we had no way to raise enough money to do this (it’s not cheap) and can be upwards of $5,000.00 including entry fees and charter, but we knew in a year, we could definitely figure out a way to get sponsors and raise enough to make it happen.

Thanks to Kim’s cousin Val, we had a boat with a captain, (you have to find your own) enough money and sponsors to enter, a team name and a crew of five hearty women and even had our own T-Shirts made up for our team. We were ready to go!

Then, just last weekend we found out from a reliable source who also happened to work part time as a first mate on a few boats, that our “captain” had bailed on us because we didn’t have enough money to enter every calcutta across the board, giving his boat the chance of winning the tourney, BUT would have ended up costing us an additional $2,350! We’re actual poor girls here dude! WTF?!

The boat charter was $1,800

The entry fee was $550 for 5 anglers

Hotel for the weekend $1200/5

Etc. Etc. Etc. We were grateful just to be able to afford all that so when the news came in that he had dumped us 5 days before the tournament, Val sprang into action and found us a BETTER boat, BIGGER boat, and a better captain and first mate almost overnight. “Everything happens for a reason” isn’t just a cliche.

We ended up pulling enough money together to enter one calcutta and we were just happy to be able to participate.

We arrived Wednesday night August 15, 2018 and registered. Our condo was right on the bay so we had a lovely view.

From there, we took a few pics, had some delicious finger food and then hit the grocery store for some sandwiches and snacks for our trip. Then it was shower and Zzzzzzzzzzzzz. 3:30am wake up call.

Here we are! Bright eyed and bushy tailed and ready to take on the high seas! Okay well we’re awake and we have beer for later so…

The Sunset Marina before sunrise. This was at 4:45am.

Those are the lights of Ocean City, MD way off in the distance behind us.

Pre-dawn and let me tell you, this boat was making tracks! We were going so fast that if you weren’t used to it and had experienced sea legs, you better hold on or you’re gonna hit the deck. That’s our first mate, Bobby on the right. He worked his butt off getting everything ready for us.

Michele (L) and Kim, keeping stationary as we blasted through the waves and waited for the sunrise. It was incredible out there. Once you’re out about 10 miles from shore, the water changes to a deep blue. We were constantly in awe.

Way out there with the tankers!

Okay…sun’s up ladies! It took us about 3 hours from shore to the fishing area, which was approximately 60+ miles from the dock. We couldn’t drop our lines until 8:30am so we picked our order of fishing. How it works is, we each were given 30 minutes on the rods. Every 30 minutes, another girl stepped up for her turn for three complete rotations. There were six rods in the water with bait and three teasers. Teasers are these cool lures without hooks that basically flutter and splash on the surface of the water to attract the fish.

NO LAND IN SIGHT FOLKS! Here’s Bobby setting up the rods. Once the baited lines are ready, the poles are mounted and at 8:30, the lines go into the water and the captain moves the boat slow and steady, dragging the lines behind us. Here fishy fishy!!!

If it were only that easy…they’d call it Catching instead of Fishing

30 minutes per woman. So basically, every 2 1/2 hours, it was my turn. You sit or stand in the back of the boat and if you get a bite, you grab the rod, hop in the fighting chair and reel your ass off. Unfortunately for me, I spent my three turns watching the teasers flutter in the water. Nothing. Nada. Ziltch. Zippo. Not one nibble. Also unfortunately, neither did any of our crew…except for one.

I’ll post the link to the video at the bottom of the blog so you can see what happened.

For a brief two minutes or so, what we’d waited all day for actually happened…then it didn’t happen, all thanks to what the captain suspected to be a defective hook. As you can see, the pointy end…the part that matters…GONE with the fish…a 250lb Blue Marlin.

hook

I want to add that any billfish aka white or blue marlins are catch and release. Tuna and Mahi Mahi (aka dolphin fish) are keepers.

Here we are. There’s our captain, Mike, in the blue shirt and we are from left to right: Val, me, Kim, Debbie, Michele and Bobby. Proud as can be. We survived the waves, the sun, the waiting, the long hours, biting flies and sore rear ends siting and waiting for a fish, and yet we never felt better because it was all for a wonderful charity; breast cancer research. All of us have been touched by this dreaded disease via family members. Some lost their battles while others more recently stricken have beat it, all thanks to research and the American Cancer Society.

We were tired but as Kim said later that evening, it was a GOOD tired. The tired where you know you earned it!

We left the dock at 5:00am and returned at around 5:30PM. Yeah we slept well that night.

We slept well after a bit of girl sillies.

The next day was all fun and games. We earned it. We started the day with a great breakfast at the 45th Street Tap House on Coastal Highway. I highly recommend their Bloody Mary’s and their sunsets on the bay…actual sunsets, not a drink.

Then we did a little pool crashing (shhhh) and swam and chatted the afternoon away at said unmentioned pool location. Then off to the Clarion Hotel and Lenny’s Beach Bar for dinner and drinks to hear an awesome band play. Plus, we made a new friend! Our wonderful waiter Relja from Serbia. He’s in college in Serbia studying finance. We adopted him and low and behold, his mother is a breast cancer survivor! Every summer, hundreds of young adults from Europe are sponsored to work in Ocean City (and other cities) for the summer. Most if not all of them work two jobs and live in deplorable housing, yet they were all the nicest kids. We adopted this one. 🙂

Now for the video. Michele is in the chair reeling. Val is behind her reeling in one of the teasers to get it out of her way since the fish will come up the middle, which of course, it unfortunately didn’t. Captain Mike told us had that hook not snapped, Michele would have been in that chair for up to and possibly beyond FOUR HOURS. No one could have helped her because rules are rules. You have to bring it in yourself.

We told her we had every confidence she could have done it but I guess…we’ll never know.

BUT…

THERE’S ALWAYS NEXT YEAR!

If you or your company would like to sponsor our team for next year’s Poor Girl Open, please contact me at pegfabulous214@gmail.com. I will add you to a my personal mailing list (NO SPAM) and update you when we begin actively fundraising. Thank you so much!!!

THE WINNERS!

My #Ancestry Journey Continues – #Shocked and Amazed!

My Ancestry journey continues. When I have more time, I’m going to perhaps make a video to walk you through the tree and see how the process works, and how to find the information you are searching for – providing it is available.

Today I’m sharing some really cool stuff. These are all my ancestors and I have the tree to show those connections but I’m heading out on vacation this afternoon so I promise to break it all down as soon as I can when I get home.

Below are screen shots from my ancestry.com tree of my great grandparents, dating to all the way back to BC. I have found that unless your family had some historical significance, the records are sketchy at best. However, with the World View on Ancestry, and the Netherlands records, you can do pretty well.

Times “REMOVED” means a generational separation. 4X removed for example would mean we are 4 generations apart.

So, here they are…some of my family:

Charles Darwin

Prince William

Oliver Wendle Holmes

Britney Jean Spears

Sir Winston Churchill

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Norma Jean Mortenson

Princess Diana Spencer
Njord Nortun King of Seden

 

 

Cleopatra VII

Co-Writing A #Book and Other #Pirate Tales – Amber Wake Style

amber-wake1Since I was a bit occupied with my day job, my family, editing, beta reader feedback changes, rewrites, more editing, more rewrites and then even more editing, as well as formatting for both Kindle and Paperback, then uploading, rechecking errors, fixing errors and re-uploading AMBER WAKE, I didn’t really have much time to build a blog tour. (Poor pitiful me, right? LOL)

Therefore, I give you a blog tour in a loot bag, right here on my own blog! This is my first installment.

Ready the guns lads!

First, in true pirate fashion, I’ve stolen a few of the same questions my co-author of Amber Wake answered, just for fun and to see how our answers differ.

What is your book about?

Amber Wake is about Gabriel Wallace; a young, honorable Captain in the Royal Navy in 1705 London. He’s thrust unwittingly into a delicate and ultimately dangerous situation when an Admiral’s young and lovely (as well as untamed) wife is caught carousing with a young, dashing lieutenant, who just happens to be the newest officer on Gabriel’s crew. As a result of the young Captain’s innocent involvement, he is implicated in the murder of the Admiral and court-marshaled. However, he isn’t about to take this, nor the more intimate retaliation against him lying down. He’s prepared for a fight he’s been waiting for and in a navy filled with sheep, he’s a lion about to roar.

Consumed with vengeful purpose, he goes on a rampage, hell bent on making the Admiral who plotted against him pay in every way possible for his downfall. With his loyal crew, his closest friend Miles Jacobs, and that naughty new lieutenant, Maddox Carbonale, he takes his navy ship, the Majesty’s Venture, on a wild ride into a focused and deliberate maelstrom of payback…the old fashioned way.

What made you start writing it? 

Quite simply, my co-author, Ronovan Hester, came to me with an idea for a back story on my character, Rasmus Bergman, who was one of the main characters from DEMONS & PEARLS. I was still writing JADED TIDES at the time and I really liked Ron’s ideas, even though at the time they were still pretty basic but they fit in well with answering the question as to how and why Rasmus got involved with piracy. I ended up working that back story into JADED TIDES when Rasmus finally pours his heart out to Ivory and confesses his past life. I was grateful he’d shared his ideas for AMBER WAKE with me since that was such a game changing chapter of JADED TIDES.

Ron sent me several drafts. I was very distracted at the time, as I was in the editing and publishing stages of JADED TIDES, as well as working on a prequel novella, IVORY DAWN, for DEMONS & PEARLS. I would read some and then along would come another version. However, once the idea had settled in of the basic story and I began the initial stages of working on it, I was beginning to “feel” the tale, which is something I have to do before I will invest my time in something…especially a story I didn’t create. The most important reason I did this was I loved the story. The other reason was because I knew how much Ron had invested in it and how badly he wanted to be published. Before I knew it, I was all the way in and the rest as they say, is historical fiction. 😉

Do you see a possibility of a sequel to your book? 

At some point I’d like to continue Rasmus’ story. He’s one of my favorite characters. Most of the apprehension I had of even writing this book with Ron was my attachment to Rasmus. Allowing someone else the privilege of taking one of your beloveds and using them to create a new story is terrifying. I know Rasmus better than anyone. I created him for goodness sake’s and Maddox Carbonale as well. These characters are a part of me. It’s a big line to cross but I knew Ron read my books and was very familiar with both of these characters. I also knew, even if in Ron’s final draft (the one I worked on and beat the crap out of) either of them didn’t feel right or I felt they were too different from the men I created, I’d have the freedom and right to make adjustments and keep them true to who they were in my other books. Gabriel, however, was evolving into Ramus so regardless of who I know Rasmus to be, in the beginning, he was different, as he should have been. It took a series of life altering events to bring Rasmus to the surface.

I must say I also love a few of the characters Ron brought into the story. Adam and Gimby to be specific. I’d also like to get to know William Asperson more. He seems like such a gentle and innocent soul who unfortunately didn’t come into the story until near the end. I’d really like to get to know him better and push his buttons a little. I’m very good at pushing buttons and flinging my characters into situations to see what happens! After all, real people have flaws and faults and are far from perfect. Perfect is boring. Part of my passion for writing is digging out those hidden demons and watching them fly around a bit.

(Now one of my own)

What’s it like to co-write a book? What was your formula?

Having never co-written anything with anyone, there was no formula. As I said above, Ron wrote the bones and guts, and I stitched on the muscle and flesh…kind of like building Frankenstein’s monster and believe me when I tell you, I am not the easiest person to work with. I don’t have much time to write. I have to schedule my writing time around a very and I do mean VERY busy life. I work a full time job. Including myself, there are seven people and a cat living under my roof. Those seven people include three little granddaughters, all under the age of six. I babysit them in the evenings while my daughter teaches dance classes. I cook. I clean. I do the laundry and most evenings I don’t even sit down until 10:00PM. If I’m working on a book and I open my laptop to work, I work. Yes, when I’m in between books, I Facebook, play around online and relax but when I’m in work mode, I’m a force to be reckoned with and I make no apologies for that. I can be very unsympathetic to excuses or nonsense but I am in no way a Diva. When you only have so many hours in a day…most stolen from a night’s sleep, getting down to business is top priority. Unfortunately, sometimes that can translate into other things.

The simple answer is co-writing a book is challenging to say the least unless you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into. Fortunately Ron and I laid out the ground rules from day one. I loved the story but I would absolutely need to make changes. I would need to make revisions based on beta feedback. I would need to inject my voice in order to keep this book in line with my others and above all, since I was handling all of the nuts and bolts of the project, I would have the final say as to those changes. To some it may sound harsh but this is a business, not a hobby. Ron did an excellent job writing this book; the research, the story line and the characters were formed well and the drama was tight. I like to think of it this way: Ron brought the people to the dance floor and I played the music to make them dance. Together, we had one hell of party.

Mission accomplished I’d say for Captain Wallace – Bergman. Mission accomplished for Ronovan Hester and P.S. Bartlett as well.

blue_rose_tattoo_by_9rayne2

#Pirates and Pump it Up Weekend

What a whirlwind of a weekend!

Saturday consisted of a fabulous day at the Fells Point Privateer Festival with my best mates. I’ll not deny I did partake of a wee bit too many dark and stormys–and a few other things that Captain Morgan had to offer but hey, pirates, right? 😉

Here are a few captures from our fun day!

My NEW hat!

My NEW hat!

Love this hat!

Love this hat!

IMG_1234

Captain Morgan checking out my D&P Card

group IMG_1246 drinks IMG_1239 flag IMG_1233 Gitana Mermaid Parrot IMG_1198 IMG_1189 Kim hatIMG_1268 piu piu2 pui3pui4pui5

 

Easter 2015 – My Family is So Wonderful!

A day in pictures…

Easter6

I’m ready to go to MeeMaw’s Sis!

 

Easter2

And they’re off!

Easter5

MeeMaw, are you cheating?

Easter7

I have this bag full of eggs! And a runny nose!

Easter8

I’m just so happy to be here!

Easter9

The cutest cousins ever!

Easter11

More cute cousins!

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Bigger cousins 🙂

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Cheesing with the future daughter in law.

Easter 2015 Easter3

Easter10 Easter12 Easter13 Easter15

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DONE! 🙂