How do you spell "special"? I spell it A-W-A-R-D!!!


Suzette Saxton at Shooting Stars  ( just made my day.   

Though I have been blogging for a while now (on my personal site, listed on my "info" if anyone is interested), I recently joined the blog community at and have been learning tons each day about writing, not to mention I have noticed a wonderful camaraderie on these here blogs which continue to inspire me. =)

Imagine my surprise when I logged in today (to research the blogs I am subscribed to, actually) and found the sweetest comment, stating that Suzy had given me, along with four other bloggers, the "Humane" award for "downright sweetness"!!!  (Awe, shucks!)  You can read her actual post here:

I appreciate each and every one of you who take the time to read and/or follow My Thoughts Exactly.  It really means a lot to be able to share what's on my mind with all of you.  And a sweet award like this keeps me going. So thank you Suzy! 

The rules of this award state that each recipient has to, in turn, pass the award along to five more bloggers. So look for this post coming up in the next day or two.

Always sharing my thoughts on the love of life, writing and of course, coffee -

coffeelvnmom (also known as Jessica in the real world)

Summer Reading

I'm back home after going on an annual vacation with my friend and our kids for a few days.  (And there's actually still a few hairs left on my head. Shocking!)

Somehow I wasn't thinking when I was packing for the four of us (big surprise there) and for some reason I failed to pack ALL of my ms work. So here I was thinking I'd have all of this time in the evenings to sit down and brainstorm after the kids were in bed, and I had absolutely nothing to go by (and refused to write more than 2 pages for fear I would repeat myself). Definitely disappointing.

I did have an unusual idea though - something popped into my head that I would love to start just for the fun of it - a sort of ongoing blogging topic just for kicks.  (You will all either 1) find it a little entertaining and get a chuckle out of it occasionally or 2) think I am crazy and wonder what I am putting in my coffee.  Either way, it's entertaining to me - so that's the important thing, right?)

Friday (a few days before we headed out of town) I hit up my local Borders and took advantage of their latest BOGO offer.

I completed one of the books before leaving town on Sunday and am half-way through another one, but am having a hard time sticking with it.  Has anyone read Julie & Julia?(  There are some funny moments (lol ones for me, in fact), but I am having a hard time getting past the "GD" word. 

Am I the only one bothered by that specific word?  Seems like you can say every curse word under the sun to me and it won't phase me - but if I see or hear that one, it really turns me off. (Which I have read in Julie & Julia at least 7 times or more by now.)  Aside from that, it's a cute book - if you don't mind ignoring the culinary talk. (Half of the time she mentions meals in French and I have absolutely no idea what she is talking about.  I finally decided to just imagine a big Thanksgiving turkey each time she mentions another term in French just so I have some sort of visual.  With a nice big steaming cup of coffee next to it, of course.)

Summer reading is a hot topic these days on the internet and in entertainment magazines.  So I would love to know what you all have read so far, or are planning on reading.  (Plus, I am using this as a sort of research as well for my own writing - to get a feel of what people like.  Way more informative than reading reviews, IMO.)

Well I haven't had coffee in hours - and am going to go get some before sending the kids to bed (as soon as it gets dark enough).  And never mind, my husband has just informed me that it is too late to get coffee. *enter downcast look spread across my face here* 

Oh - and my friend told me about this neat trick to use on MS word that I had no clue about, so I'm going to see if it works on my comp.  Hopefully I will figure it out so she'll stop giggling about how absolutely clueless I can be about the obvious most of the time.

- Enjoy your coffee down to the very last drop. 
(I'm trying out signatures. Hopefully in a few days a really awesome one will flow from the tips of my fingers out of the blue.  Just be glad I didn't use the first one that came to me, which was even more lame. And no, I'm not even about to share it for fear of pair after pair of eyes rolling as it is read, therefore changing the pressure of the atmosphere and resulting in a cataclysmic - wow I spelled that correctly on my first try! - change in the weather or something like that.  Wait! No! Don't roll your eyes!!!)

A Much-used Alternative?

I’m sitting here drinking coffee thanks to a friend’s advice on fb.  

The chaos of getting ready to head out of town tomorrow, combined with my normal chaos (and forgetfulness) made me forget day after day this week to stock up on my coffee supplies. 

**Might I share with you that I have obviously not yet polished off my first cup of liquid energy because I just wasted five minutes of my life that I will never get back staring at the word “unforgetfulness” and trying to figure out how on earth I had it spelled incorrectly.  “Is my spell check an idiot? What the?” until finally I blinked hard enough to realize that “unforgetfulness” is not, nor has it ever been a word - not to mention it would have had to switch meanings to “forgetting” - which obviously unforgetfulness would mean NOT ever forgetting - and I was supposed to be typing “forgetfulness”.** 

(Okay back to me sitting here drinking coffee.  But the title does say “My Thoughts Exactly”, right? You have been warned!)

The chaos of getting ready to head out of town (it’s our annual trip - me + one of my bff’s + my kids + her kids = chaotic annual vacation of two friends for over 2 decades attempting to hang out for a few days while dealing with their own children - vacation my arse! - and wondering why they never just go alone each summer to hang out as adults. What? Oh. I guess I’m the only one who thinks that.) along with my normal FORGETFULNESS made me not get coffee filters at the store, even though I’ve been there like three times in the past few days.

So lucky for me, a friend volunteered that I use paper towels.  And I actually was able to do it.  Yes.  I’m shocked, myself.  It was a really big step, let me tell you.

To get you into my odd brain a little bit, I will take you through my coffee brewing set-up.

“Dangit. I forgot to get filters again.”

I look around kitchen, hoping a pack of filters is just going to pop out of a cabinet and fly into my hand or something.



My head turns a little bit further to the right and I see the roll of paper towels.

“Paper towels!  Does it really work?  Am I really that desperate?”

I look at the clock. It’s still early. I shouldn’t even be up yet.  (Well during the summertime, at least.)

“Okay, paper towels. I can DO this.”

My paper towels have the smaller perforations, so after laying a single and then double piece on top of the filter, I figure I can get away with the smaller piece (and therefore not have tons of paper towel hanging out of the coffee maker. All this for a little 4 cup coffee pot. Because I shattered my normal sized one that another bff got for me for my birthday a couple of years ago when I left it plugged in to the wall but decided to move what it had been set on away from the wall. But I digress...)

The whole thing is ready - distilled water in my pot, paper towel full of coffee grinds, and pot is plugged in.  I turn it on, and as it begins to brew (verryyy slowly...) the weird panicky part of me kicks in.

“Wait. I just put a paper towel in there. What if there’s chemicals...that I’m brewing into my COFFEE...because the filters might be bleached or something - or whatever the case - the filters are MADE for your water ***that you are about to drink*** and brew through - and no one expects you to EAT or DRINK your PAPER TOWELS - oh my GOSH I could be drinking PAPER TOWEL CHEMICALS!!!!!”

After a few minutes of calming myself down and deciding that I was being completely irrational (not really - I am still freaked out) and heck, I needed the coffee anyway so what was I supposed to do? - I poured my cup of coffee and made my way of course, to my office.

What was the point of this blog, you ask?  Well to be honest I am still not awake and I can’t remember.  I think it was because I just wanted to say -

 1. )  *thank you* to the friend who offered the idea of the paper towels, but I don’t think I can do it EVER again.  (It did get me by this morning though, so that’s a plus. Even though I have a weird taste in my mouth and my right eye is twitching. Must be the chemicals.)

2.)    Maybe if all of you read this I can be reminded to get coffee filters by the time I get back into       town on Thursday.


3.)  I remember now - I was going to tie this to a whole other issue I have with “expiration dates” on food and how I didn’t realize my “issues” were all that extreme until my 9 year old pointed out that my 8 year old checks dates all the time everywhere she goes now - but I’m out of time and need to clean out the car before it is hot as molasses outside. So that will be another day, another weird trip into my rationality.

4.)  I’m just curious now - are there any other odd alternatives like paper towels in coffee makers that I have yet to learn about? Please share! (Not promising I’ll try them, but it might make for some very interesting travel talk.  “Did you know that you can use disposable diapers to toss a salad?  Yes!  And the diaper absorbs all of the moisture until you have a perfect, water drop-less salad to serve!”)

So I have this picture in my mind...

Of how I would love my header on this blog to look. 

Yet - believe it or not (some of my friends will think this just isn't so) I am not very talented when it comes to graphics.  I'm sure I could figure it out - I usually do - but I do not have the time, nor the patience at this point to mess around and figure out how to make something like that.

But back to the picture in my mind.  

I see this header - in subtle (not pastel...classic??? What's the word for it? You know, where it looks all sepia-ish sorta but still has color...) yellows, browns, blues and greens (terrible description - I know - it would just boil down to the talent of the designer, I guess!) ... okay where was I going with this? Ah yes...

There's this picture in my mind - of a leather-bound journal (the pages all  worn out looking and the leather "gently used" - or in other words, *beautiful*) sitting on a table/bench/whatever (because I haven't gotten that far with my idea yet) with a nice looking pen (not plastic, if you get my drift) set on top of it and a nice, warm, cup of coffee sitting next to it on the table/bench/whatever.

Now if that didn't add TOO much to my already wonderfully described vision, on top of that I would love to see an owl or sparrow somewhere in the mix - whether it was on the coffee cup or on the journal itself (might take away from the classic leather look I'm going for, though - again - would leave it up to the "designer") - well the fact that the bird would be included at all would just be icing on the cake - I wouldn’t care where it was placed, to be honest.  

Lastly - after allll that - somehow, somewhere, the "MY THOUGHTS EXACTLY" blog title would be thrown in the mix. 

Just imagine it, people. 

Sip your coffee. 

See the journal, and the pretty pen propped across the cover as  steam slowly escapes from the delicious cup of coffee in your mind.  (Well the cup of coffee isn't IN your mind...I am pretty sure you know what I mean...though boy wouldn't that help during writers block - a straight shot of caffeine directly to the brain?  But I digress...)

So get a feel for it. Be prepared for my new header to pop up someday (eventually).

And now could you please tell me where in the world to find someone who can help me make this happen?

My Name is Jessica...

I’ve finally gotten to the point in my new venture to where I feel I can share this with all of you.

Some of you may think it’s odd that I didn’t share this sooner - but I was in my world of Hallie - and didn’t want anything to change my perception or view of anything until I was done. (And of course I was nervous as well, let’s face it - everyone is scared of rejection and pessimism - I was giving a large enough dose of that to myself and didn’t think I could handle it from anyone else.)

A couple of weeks into May (and before summer vacation began) I had this spark go off in my brain.  I was lying in bed one night, trying to get to sleep - my mind racing 100 miles an hour as always - and for some reason I just saw a scene in my mind.

The scene wasn’t like my dreams - where I don’t see anyone’s faces but I know who they are regardless - this was different.  

In this scenario everything was crystal clear - faces were obvious and motives made sense and the setting, the background, the voices - everything was in detail.

I fell asleep seeing this - these characters & the emotions across their faces - feeling the way they felt, and even knowing what they wanted.

It wasn’t too far into the following day before I headed downtown to the store and bought myself a journal.

Writing my vision became a major part of my every day life - I was being me, dealing with my children, talking to my friends, going to work, doing the whole chaotic last weeks of school thing, and writing.

I carried my journal wherever I went - to J’s softball practices, to work, in the car - writing down anything and everything that entered my mind.

Lovemuffin was the only person I told (not that it wasn’t obvious after the first few days of coming home to me writing or typing constantly) - and I swore him to absolute secrecy.  I think at the beginning he thought I had lost it.  (I had, of course, just read the Twilight Series for the second time -  and I think he figured I was just excited and trying to do something like that. But I wasn’t.)

But the more I read my ideas to him, the more he got into my story as well.  (I think - though he may just have been being the wonderful husband that he is and was just saying whatever he thought would make me happy.  It had to be confusing for him, since I wrote everything out of order. The poor guy knew the main event before the beginning, ect. But back to the story...)

Before I knew it, I had characters and ideas and conversations - and the pivotal part of the story line figured out.  And for the next month I wrote, and wrote, and wrote.  

When I had arrived at about 35,000 words or so, I decided it was time for some input. 

For those of you who don’t know my mom, she was a secretary for many years, and is a better editor than I am - I inherited my writing skills from her!  (And for those of you who know me well, you know exactly what I mean by that.  Grammar has always been the one thing I know well. Math- whole different story.)   So it was only logical to ask my mom to go over it.  (My mother was also sworn to secrecy.)

Fast forward to now.  I have finally finished writing, for the most part. The book is now at approximately 60,000 words, but by the time I have finished with editing and whatnot I figure it will be closer to 75,000.

I have been researching publishers, agents, and everything else involved in taking the next step in this dream I have to eventually see my book/s on the shelves in a bookstore.  It takes a lot of time and effort. And reading

I’m learning more about the business day by day, and most of it is positive information - but of course being a writer is like being a needle in a haystack.  You want to be “found” but you have to find the right people - and then once you find them you have to submit your info to them and basically throw your hands up into the air and wait.  And hope they are interested in your work.  (Let me just say that I am not naive. I understand the percentages. I know how small of a chance I have to get this past where it is right now.  But I am going to try my hardest anyway - to get my info into the right hands and see what happens.  Because this is my dream, and I am going to try my hardest to achieve it.)

Finding the right people is my task at the moment. I’m presently trying to write my query for agents - and dealing with the task of writing the synopsis of my book - a few short paragraphs, or hook; which describes the story line and *hopefully* gets someone interested in representing me.

If you’re still reading this boring blog, I’m sure you have a few questions. Questions about what in the world I am writing (or perhaps what in the world I am thinking).  

As I am barely at the beginning of this entire process, I don’t want to give too much away; but then again, if you are still reading this, you deserve a little information for staying with me so long, right?

So. Here you go.  My first entry into the world regarding this book (aside from a quote I snuck in a few days ago on my fb - the status update which said to turn to page 56 on the book closest to you & write the 5th sentence - hee hee I’m sneaky).  It’s only little bit of info - my generic synopsis, if you will.

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Main Character:  Hallie Barnes 

Synopsis: Hallie Barnes has been followed by a black cloud throughout her adult life.  Though by now she is used to the constant disasters that seem to follow her wherever she goes, none of them have prepared her for what is about to happen. 

I’ll Love You Until is about Hallie’s relationship with Brenden, her husband of ten years - and takes you through a time in her life as she deals with unexpected and even catastrophic events shoved her way - including the sudden, startling arrival of someone from her past, and involuntarily being forced into an unforeseen future.

And there you go. Yes, it’s vague, I know - but it has to be. I can’t very well tell you the entire story line, now can I? 

Now this “secret” is finally off my chest. I can move on and tackle my work knowing that it’s out there and everyone knows it.  Hopefully it sparked some interest. Or questions.  

I already have the next book in mind (the second in a series of 3, hopefully *crosses fingers*) so I would love to hear from everyone about what makes you interested and keeps you reading. Obviously that would be very beneficial to me.

Until next time, my readers-

My name is Jessica...and I am writer.

I'm new.

Just testing the waters on blogger, here.  

I am going to use this blog as a way to make it easier for readers who would like to follow me - readers who prefer this sort of set up vs. the one I have on my  personal site mac site (iweb). 

Everything will be posted on my iweb first, and I will then paste them over here.  So don't stress, my readers - you won't miss anything even if you only visit here from now on;)

For those of you who haven't yet noticed or read my blog in the past, my name is very, VERY popular.  I did not see a point in using my name in any of my urls due to the fact that there is a photographer, singer, actress, and much more with the same *awesome* name as I.  

Therefore, I have chosen coffeelvnmom and tried to make it universal - on myspace, facebook, my iweb site, twitter, and now here, on blogger.  Hopefully it will make it easier to find/follow me. We shall see.  (Not to mention, that title is quite appropriate for me, don't you think?)

And on that note, I am going to post the first blog regarding my new adventure.