Sunday, February 08, 2009

The Pond Has a New Home

I've moved! The new site is finally up! For new details, go to

See you there!

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Tangled Webs

To read the previous Twirl, go here.

For my new Invisible Friends, Twirl is the story of a feisty, sassy ballerina named Vivi and her handsome cowboy named Wade. After falling in love swaying on the dance floor to the sound of a fiddle and steel guitar, the couple have stumbled onto a old Texas legend that might possibly lead to riches! On top of everything, Vivi is fighting her controlling father and over involved dance teacher, who are trying to trap her into a life she may not want. Add in a mysterious secret with her mother, a scheming evil boy in her dance class and regular teen angst and you've got DRAMA!

To catch up in the archives, go here and here. Or e-mail me and I'll send you the word document of what I've posted.


Vivi stared out the windshield, unable to believe her eyes. Damien smirked and she snarled. Wade glanced out the windshield and swore. His blue eyes narrowed.

"What the hell is that creep doing here?"

"I don't know," Vivi muttered. Gritting her teeth together, she jerked open the car door. With the letter still clutched in her hand, she stormed over to Damien.

"Vivi," he drawled in a voice meant to be sexy. "Imagine finding you here in the boondocks."

Vivi shoved her palm into his chest. "What the hell are you doing here?" she barked.

Damien fluttered his long eyelashes. "Is your redneck boyfriend not happy to see me?"

"Answer the question, Damien," Vivi snarled. "I've had a long day and I'm really not in the mood for this."

Damien's eyes dropped and he shifted his gaze. "It's a family reunion," he said in a bored tone. "It's my grandparent's 50th wedding anniversary and for some reason, they dragged us all out to this God forsaken hell hole." His gaze shifted to a leer. His eyes traveled up and down her body, lingering on the bodice of her sundress. "What are you doing here? Are you the entertainment?"

Vivi lunged at him, but a warm hand pulled her back. Wrapping around her front, Wade lifted her off her feet and placed her behind him.

"In return for me saving your life," he spat at Damien, "I'll ask you nicely to be polite to Vivi. Next time, guest or no guest, I'll make you pay. Understood?"

Damien threw back his head and laughed, showing the whites of his teeth. "Is this the part where I suggest we have a drawl?" he said in a mocking tone. "Shall I take ten paces and turn?"

Wade's jaw tightened. Through the back of his cotton Western shirt, Vivi saw the muscles in his back ripple with restraint. Without another word, he grabbed her hand and walked away.

"Oh Vivi?" Damien called. She and Wade turned. With a smirk, Damien spoke low enough for them to hear. "I heard you skipped practice today. I wonder what Mrs. Angelson would think of all this."

"Damien, I swear if you say a single word"-- Vivi hissed. Damien held up a hand, his eyes glittering.

"I'll stay quiet," he drawled with a pleased smirk. "For now. But you owe me, Vivi." His eyes flicked to Wade and his smile grew larger. "I look forward to collecting my debt."

It took the promise of peanut butter ice cream and research about the letter to keep Vivi from wrapping her hands around his throat. Fuming, she let Wade pull her through the throngs of people. After passing a large pavilion and barnyard full of prancing horses, she finally trusted herself to speak without screaming.

"Was he telling the truth?" she asked as they walked past the crowd. Wade tipped his hat to a group of ladies and nodded. "I talked to J.W., the manager. My grandpa rents this part of the ranch out for events. Apparently, they're getting a lot of money for this one. That's the only reason I didn't stir up a fuss. He needs it."

Vivi's interest was peaked, but she stayed quiet. "I'm sorry."

"For what?" Wade's forehead wrinkled.

"Everything," Vivi muttered. "My dad, my dance teacher, now seems like every time I finally feel happy, they spoil everything. It's just annoying."

"Ghosts only chase you if you let them, darling," Wade told her. "You just got to learn to run faster." Seeing her nose wrinkle, he pulled her closer to him. "You know what?"

"What?" Vivi asked, biting her lip. She could feel the heat from his chest against her fingertips. The stubble on his chin brushed her forehead as he looked down.

"This is the first day we've been together we haven't danced," Wade murmured. "And I was thinking..."

Vivi swallowed, unable to speak. Wade's blue eyes locked on to hers, the edges crinkling as he smiled.

"Ol' Bullet Bill would have done anything for one last dance," Wade said in a low voice. "And I'd hate to miss my chance with you."

"This isn't our last dance," Vivi blurted out. Her cheeks flushed and she looked away. She had never been very good at intimate moments. "And there's no music or dance floor," she muttered.

Wade laughed and took his hand in hers, than put his arm around her waist. "Did you ever just think I wanted to dance with you?" he asked. Spinning her around, they settled into a gentle sway in the middle of the dusty yard.

"What about dinner?" Vivi asked. "What about the letter?"

Wade grinned. "We got all the time we need," he said.

And for that moment, all Vivi cared about was twirling.

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow you'll hear of a fabulous new celebration here at the Pond! Then we have a whole week of whimsical fun coming up! Stay tuned!

Friday, February 06, 2009

The Rubber Chicken talks to the Love Pig

Before we check in with the Rubber Chicken, I have to thank my buddy Jen.

She sent me these great sussies from her vacation: a fabulous shell necklace, tasty chocolates and delicious-smelling lip gloss.

Thanks so much Jen! It was so sweet of you to think of me.

Though it may be awhile until I can wear the necklace.

And now, we find out what the Love Pig can offer the Rubber Chicken...

For the previous edition, go here.


"I am the Love Pig!" the pink pig exclaimed with a snort. His white wings fluttered and he spread his red hooves wide. "And I hear you're looking for your love."

"Yes!" the Rubber Chicken shouted. "I've been searching everywhere for her! I checked with the ducks, the silver banker pig and the Taco Dog. No one knows where she's gone! Can you help me?"

His voice was filled with desperation. As his eyes pleaded with the Love Pig, he felt his heart twist. If he could only talk to the Fuzzy Duck. What if she was trapped in the attic? What if she had been captured by a French chef? What if....He gulped, wincing at his raw throat from the emotion bubbling in his chest. His feathers heaving, he gaped at the Love Pig.

"Don't worry my feathered chicken friend!" the Love Pig shouted. "We'll find her quite easily. What's the last thing you heard?"

"Her friend the mermaid found a note that said she'd gone to save her mother from the Skull Face," the Rubber Chicken informed him. "But why would she just leave without saying anything? We had a date last night."

The Love Pig gulped. "Skull Face? In the attic?"

"Yes," the Rubber Chicken replied.

"Oh dear, oh dear," the Love Pig stuttered. He paced back and forth, his white wings fluttering wildly against his hot pink back. "This is bad. This is very bad."

"What do you mean, bad?" the Rubber Chicken shrieked. "I can't let anything bad happen to her!"

"I'm sorry to tell you this," the Love Pig said gravely. "But no one finds Skull Face. He finds them."

The Rubber Chicken's beak dangled open. "So you think--"

The Love Pig nodded. "Yes. She was kidnapped to be part of his captured Holiday Creatures."

The Rubber Chicken howled and fell to his orange feet. Burying his head in his feathers, he sobbed into his wings.

"Don't be worried, my feathered fowl pal!" the Noble Pig bellowed, pulling the Rubber Chicken to his feet. "I am the Love Pig! The cupid of pork! The Love Doctor of the Pond! The protector of critter hearts! The guardian of animal emotions"--

"That's all lovely," the Rubber Chicken interrupted. "But how does that help me?"

The pig snorted and fluttered his wings. "Because I know the Lady in Pink. And she is the only one in the whole Pond who has ever defeated the Skull Face."

"Really?" The Rubber Chicken jumped up and down. "How did she do that?"

"I don't know," the Love Pig replied. "We'll have to ask her."

To be continued....

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow we have a special edition of Twirl, just as you requested. Then Sunday, a special announcement about a celebration in the Pond! And we have a whole new week of whimsical goodness coming up! Stay tuned!

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Muffin Top

Muffins are the perfect treat.

Whether sunrise or sunset, there's always room for a muffin.

You can snarf one from your hand and lick the crumbs off your fingers (all the better to hide the evidence of hurried consumption and shattered resolutions!)

You can adorn a plate with plump muffin goodness. A muffin makes everything look prettier.

You can eat it from a cup or a tiny bowl. And if some ice cream/ butter/ honey/ whipped cream/ another muffin should happen to join the muffin in its tiny bowl, that's ok. Muffins in cups should never be lonely.

You can even pluck a muffin straight from the pan and pop it into your mouth. Don't worry, you don't need to taste anything ever again after this muffin.

As a expert on muffins, I can assure you they are 100 percent tasty and good for the happiness of the tummy and soul.

Scientists have proven that one muffin a day can prevent crankiness, stress and depression. I should know. I live at the North Pole all year.

If you don't have a muffin, dozens of muffins will go without cheerful kitchens to populate this year. And you wouldn't want that, would you?

So there's only one real question, Invisible Friends:

Have you had a muffin today?

He won't bother you. I promise.

This is actually my mom's recipe for Banana Nut Bread. I just made them into muffins because, well, who can resist a hot, tasty muffin?

Banana Nut Muffins

1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 egg
1 cup mashed bananas ( 3 med. bananas)
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cooking oil
1/2- 2/3 cup chopped pecans

Grease bottom of muffin cups or one loaf pan, 8 x4x2 inch if you prefer a loaf bread over muffins. Stir flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and nuts together. In a separate bowl, mix egg, bananas, sugar and cooking oil. Mix wet batter into dry batter until thoroughly mixed and pour in muffin cups or loaf pan. Bake for 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees for muffins, 60-70 minutes for loaf pan at same temperature. Check with toothpick to make sure center is done.

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow, the Rubber Chicken continues to search for his Fuzzy Duck. This weekend, as requested, a new Twirl and a special announcement about a celebration here at the Pond, as well as a new series of stories you're sure to love! Stay tuned!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Without a Single Word

To read the previous Twirl, go here.

For my new Invisible Friends, Twirl is the story of a fiesty, sassy ballerina named Vivi and her handsome cowboy named Wade. After falling in love swaying on the dance floor to the sound of a fiddle and steel guitar, the couple have stumbled onto a old Texas legend that might possibly lead to riches! On top of everything, Vivi is fighting her controlling father and over involved dance teacher, who are trying to trap her into a life she may not want. Add in a mysterious secret with her mother, a scheming evil boy in her dance class and regular teen angst and you've got DRAMA!

To catch up in the archives, go here and here. Or e-mail me and I'll send you the word document of what I've posted.


"Yup, there's only one thing we can do now," the sheriff sighed. He rubbed his forehead and planted his cowboy hat over the greasy strands that covered his budding bald spot. "We'll have to turn it over to the historical society."

"The historical society?" Margaret squawked. "It'll take them ages to find out anything! By the time they vote on where to start, how to start, when to start and what to look for, we'll all be dead! It could take 100 years!"

"I know," the sheriff replied, his voice bitter. "And I'd sure love to keep looking. But as a member of the Texas law force," he boasted, snorting proudly and pulling his pants over his bulging belly, "I'm afraid I can't waste my time chasing legends."

"But"-- Vivi started to protest, but Wade's hand squeezed hers. Hard. She narrowed her eyes and glared at him, a sharp retort on her lips. His blue eyes were twinkling as he gave her a small wink.

"I know, Vivi," the sheriff said, not noticing the exchange. "It is a bummer. But as Miss Margaret here can tell you, it could be a wild goose chase that lasted years."

Margaret hissed through her rotten teeth. "How can you do this to me?" she snarled. "You pull me away from a Ancient Texts Convention to translate this old letter, then you don't even bother to let me in on the puzzle! I am offended, sir."

"I'm sorry, ma'am," the sheriff said, honestly bewildered. "We'll be getting out of your way then." Tipping his hat, he shuffled out the front door. "Come on Wade, Vivi," he called over his shoulder.

Wade also tipped his hat, his eyes glittering with excitement as he walked out the door. Margaret handed Vivi the letter. Vivi gently touched the delicate yellowed paper between her fingers. Margaret's rough, gnarled hands clamped on. Her black eyes bore into Vivi's.

"I'm available," she whispered through her rotten black teeth, the words whistling through the air. "Day or night. Just call." She slipped a card from her black sleeve and slid it under Vivi's thumb. Releasing her grip on the letter, she abruptly turned and shuffled away. For a moment, Vivi stood in the strange living room holding the letter in a daze. It all felt so strange, so unreal. A tribal mask stared down at her, unblinking in agreement. Jumping at Wade's voice calling her name, she hurried out the screen door without looking back.

She waited until after he had helped her in the truck and climbed in on the other side before speaking.

"What's your idea?" she blurted out.

Wade didn't even bother pretending. With a wide grin, he fired up the engine. "I say we find what Bullet Bill hid," he exclaimed. "We can go to every dance hall in town and follow the clues. I know we can do it!"

"How do we know all the letters are in dance halls?" Vivi asked. "The first letter was in their house."

"They've got to be in dance halls," Wade replied. "Where else could a unmarried young woman go alone in those days at night?"

"Good point," Vivi admitted, running her finger along the edge of the letter. "Why didn't you tell the sheriff?"

"The sheriff wants the treasure for money," Wade replied bluntly. "I don't care if it's money or a bag of old socks. I just want to find it." His blue eyes locked onto hers. "What do you think?"

Vivi felt her cheeks turn pink. Every time he gave her that look, she felt like she was swirling on the dance hall. "I think it'll be a lot of fun," she said honestly.

"Great!" Wade crowed. "We can hit a dance hall a weekend and spend all week breaking down the clues."

"Every weekend?" Vivi gulped. The performance she'd been training all year for was just a few months away. Every single weekend had been scheduled with hours of practice, not counting the classes and dance team practices she had during the week.

"Is that not going to work?" Wade asked.

Vivi looked at his wounded face and felt her heart twist. "No, it's fine," she lied. Her stomach tightened in knots and she bit onto her tongue, digging her tooth into the soft flesh.

"I can't wait to find out what the first clue means!" Wade cried, slapping the steering wheel in excitement. "But first, we've got to get to dinner!"

"Dinner?" Vivi looked at the clock. It was barely three. "What do you mean dinner?"

"At my grandfather's," Wade said, giving her an odd look. "I have to help him barbecue and get set up. It takes awhile."

Vivi felt a quiver snake down her spine. "Barbecue? How many people are coming?"

Wade looked straight at the road. "Just a few," he murmured. A smile danced at the edge of his lips.

Vivi gulped and stroked the letter with her thumb, running it back and forth down the brittle paper. Wade laughed and put one hand on her knee.

"Vivi, I was just kidding," he reassured her. "It's just the three of us. I don't have enough family I like to introduce you to, anyways." He flipped on the radio. "I'm actually hoping my grandfather knows about the legend, or at least has some books on it. He's a huge history nut. He knows everything about this area."

Vivi let out a sigh of relief and leaned against the seat. "I'm looking forward to meeting him," she assured Wade. Letting the hills roll past them out the window, Vivi let her thoughts drift away as the truck flew down the road. They turned onto a old ranch road that trickled into a gravel path. The truck bounced and jarred as Wade yelled over the noise.

"See, this is where we keep the cows in the summer--and that's where the old barn used to be," he shouted, pointing to different land marks. "Over there is the tank--you'd call it a pond--it's usually stocked with catfish."

Vivi peered through the windshield. Her eyes widened. "What's all that about? Who are all those people?"

Wade leaned forward and his jaw tightened. "I don't know. But if it's what I think it might be, then it ain't good."

Pulling up to a large metal building surrounded by a sea of cars, Vivi felt her body go numb. It couldn't be him. Not here, not now. Her fingers clamped the letter to her chest, damp with sweat.

"Vivi?" Wade asked. "What's wrong?"

Vivi couldn't answer. She could only stare at his sneering face.

Damien, the nemesis from her dance class, was smiling right at her.

To be continued....

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow we have a tasty family recipe and the new chapter of the Rubber Duck searching for his Fuzzy Love on Friday! Plus, we've got a weekend full of whimsical fun! Stay tuned!

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

The Intruder of the Pond

Dearest Invisible Subjects,

It is your regal ruler, Queen Bitty. And I have a terrible tragedy to tell you about.

A horrible event.

A disastrous deed.

This creature has invaded the Pond.

Did I just hear you coo?

I thought not.

It seems my unloyal servant, the Blond Duck's sister Danielle, has gotten a new puppy. A baby beagle named Star.

I am not amused.

How dare Ben rub her belly?!?

Look at the fuzzy body, those floppy ears, those small paws! Blasphemy, I say!

This just makes me sick.

And she even has a moose. Snarlllll.

Wuffle. I like mooses. Wuffle. And dolphins.

Honestly, how can you respect any furry creature that flails about like this? How unlady-like.

I am not amused.

Wait a minute.

What is this??!?!?

I have not the words.

Blond Duck, you've crossed the wrong 3 lb. Chihuahua Queen. Vengeance shall be mine. You shall learn the hard way that I, Queen Bitty, ruler of the Pond, am the only puppy in your life.

And Bear. I guess.

Cookie-stealing bunny, attack!

Blond Duck, you shall rue the day you crossed Queen Bitty, ruler of the Pond, for the fuzzy creature you call Star.

Beware the vengeance of the Cookie-Stealing Bunny!

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow we have a new Twirl and Thursday, a tasty family recipe that you can take anywhere, anytime. And Friday, the next part of the Rubber Chicken's story as he searches for his long lost Fuzzy love!

Monday, February 02, 2009

The Gift 9

Have you ever lost a love? A feathered love with webbed feet and frizzy yellow feathers?

Then you'd probably want to check in with the Rubber Chicken, who continued to search for the fowl of his dreams yesterday.

And if you want to see what happens when the Blond Duck goes out in the sun, go here.

The Babies say thank you for all the fond birthday wishes.

And now, for the Gift.

You read the previous one, right?

Of course you did.

You may proceed.


Rouge smiled over a tray of the most luscious desserts Ashley had ever seen.

"Oh my God!" she cried, grabbing for a plate of mini-cheesecakes all the time. "If you serve these every night, I'm going to be as big as a house!"

"It's just for Ladies' Night," Rouge replied with a grin. "I know how girls like their sweets." He picked up a chocolate brownie drizzled with chocolate and caramel sauce. "Where's Samantha?" he asked, looking up and down the bar. "I got this just for her."

"I don't know," Ashley said, her forehead wrinkling. "She was right here."

"I didn't see her leave," Cleo said, her eyes wide. "She always tells us if she goes somewhere."

A bitter cackle burst from the other end of the bar. Jeremy swung around on his stood, swaying as he sipped from a thick glass mug. "She disappeared," he cried, leering at the girls. "Into thin air! Poof!" Ashley and Cleo stared at him as he roared with laughter.

"She must have gone to the bathroom," Rouge said, setting the brownie down at her place at the bar.

"Oh no," Jeremy called, shaking his head. "She vanished. Poof! All gone!" He giggled, then slurped down more beer.

"Cut him off," Rouge muttered to the bartender. The bartender nodded and tried to jerk the mug from Jeremy's hand. Jeremy howled and clutched it to his chest.

"What do you mean, she disappeared?" Ashley asked.

Snarling at the bartender trying to swipe his beer, Jeremy pushed off the bar. Teetering on one left of the stool, he smiled triumphantly and took a drink.

"One of the waiters gave her a bright blue drink," he informed Ashley with all the condensation a drunk can. "She took one sip and poof! Gone in a flash!"

"What waiter?" Rouge demanded.

"The one with black hair in all black," Jeremy replied. "He's gone too."

Rouge shook his head. "My waiters don't wear all black. And none of them have black hair like that. Plus, we don't have electric blue drinks. It's an Irish pub, not a dance club."

"Poof!" Jeremy laughed, unaware that the leg of of the bar stool was creaking alarmingly.

"Oh my God!" Ashley cried, grabbing Cleo's arm. "The necklace! How could we have been so stupid?"

"What necklace?" Rouge asked.

"Do you have it?" Cleo asked Ashley.

"No," Ashley growled. "Samantha has it in her purse."

"What necklace?" Rouge repeated.

"The necklace of love," Jeremy howled, flinging his arm out dramatically. The stool slammed into the ground and Jeremy fell on his back, the beer splashing out onto his chest and pooling around his neck. He leaned his head to the side and tried to lap it up as the beer dripped onto the bar floor.

Ashley grabbed a bar napkin and sketched out the design. "It looked like this," she said, shoving it towards Rouge. "But it was made out of diamonds and blue topaz stones." She told Rouge the story of the mysterious box with the note that said "Love, Me."

"And every note said, "Until Sunset," she said. "That's why we thought it was you. When we saw that the charm was Celtic and you had opened up the pub, we were sure it was you."

Rouge shook his head, his face grim. "This isn't good," he said. "Was she wearing the necklace?"

"I don't think so," Ashley replied. "Why?"

"If she wears it, she'll be bound to whoever gave her the gift," Rouge replied darkly. He leaned forward over the bar. On Samantha's seat was a tiny blue topaz pendant of a flower, much like the flower she had been given before.

And from across the bar, Jeremy began to laugh. His bitter laughter washed over them, sending shivers down their spine.


Samantha stirred. Her skin was damp and cold and her hair felt heavy against her face. Pulling herself up, she grimaced and brushed mossy twigs and leaves from her arms and hands. After she had picked dirt and leaves from her hair, she climbed to her feet.

Wrapping her arms around her body, she cursed. Of course. The one time she got drugged and dumped in the woods, it'd have to be in a short sweater dress that barely covered her butt and stiletto boots. She was going to kill Ashley.

"Hello?" she called. Glancing around, she shivered. She had never seen woods like this before. The trees stretched toward the sky with thick trunks covered in a bark that was so lush it looked like fur. Snarled greenery covered every inch of the ground that wasn't covered in dense green moss. A fine white mist rolled across her feet, the bitter cold making her skin prick.

She spotted a grey walk and stepped carefully over to it, avoiding small stones and small creatures under those stones. She knew enough about nature that she didn't want to run into anything with teeth or scales.

Placed on the rock was a small box wrapped in brown paper. Picking it up, Samantha read the note attached.

"I am pleased you have taken the trouble to join me, love. Are you wearing the necklace to think of me? But no path is easy, and yours is certainly difficult. I hope this makes things easier. Until sunset. Love, Me."

"As soon as I meet "Me," I'm going to throttle him," Samantha snarled. She sighed. Looking around at her empty surroundings, she sighed.

Then she opened the package.

To be continued....

Stay tuned, Invisible Friends! Tomorrow we have the introduction of a new addition to the Pond and Wednesday, a new Twirl! Then we have a treasured family recipe and more adventures with the Rubber Duck and Fuzzy Chicken! Stay tuned!