A to Z Challenge, Day 7: G Is For Gardening


One thing about the weather here, though.  Me, I grew up in California.  If you want a garden or a lawn, you need a sprinkler system.  It’s a subject of humor to see sprinklers running in the daytime when the heat of the sun is blazing down.  You can also see sprinklers watering the asphalt sometimes.

When I moved here to Chicago over fifteen years ago, I visited a friend at his home.  His lawn was a lovely, even green – and I couldn’t see a single sprinkler!

“Wow,” I said.  “Did you install a hidden sprinkler system or drip?”

He looked puzzled.  “Sprinklers?”

“For the lawn!”

“There are no sprinklers.”  Superior tone.  “We don’t need them here.”

Huh.  Imagine that.

What surprises you about your region’s gardening?

A to Z Challenge, Day 6: F Is For Fur!

This bundle of joy, immovable as the mountains and implacable as the tides, is Nadya.

Funny story about Nadya.  One day, my husband related to me a story of his day at work.  He’d mentioned to a coworker that our eldest cat is named Boria, which is the diminutive for Boris.  My husband wished that we could have named our next cat Natasha, so that we’d have Boris and Natasha, like in the old Bullwinkle cartoons.

“Honey, Nadya is the diminutive for Natasha.”




What “Oh, right,” moments have you had recently?

A to Z Challenge, Day 5: E Is For Eggs!

Eggs!  I love eggs.  They’re one of my favorite foods; I could eat breakfast for breakfast, lunch, and dinner – do eat it for dinner on a fairly regular basis when I go out to eat, because it’s better for me than french fries.  πŸ™‚

Eggs in our house mean Pysanky, the Ukrainian art of decorating eggs.  Thousands of years old, this art developed using very simple tools, wax, and dye – and the results are gorgeous!  My foray into this art form is in the picture, above.

To see the masters at work, check out the Ukrainian Gift Shop up in St. Paul, Minnesota.  Their artwork, and not just with eggs but embroidery and pottery too, is well worth a look-see.  If you want to try it for yourself, they have books and instructional materials as well as supplies.

What about you?

What’s your favorite pastime?

A to Z Challenge, Day 4: D Is For Dawg

Coyote with Bedface, A Still Life

We got Coyote from the pound in 2007 and brought her home, our very own bouncing, baby dog.  She has fear aggression, which means she barks at folks she’s scared of to try and convince them she’s bigger than she is and back off, please, thankyouverymuch.  (It doesn’t help matters that I can totally relate to this feeling.)

She’s much better now, calmer and less prone to erupting in scary, Rottweiler eat-your-face snarling and barking, (her nickname when she was young was “Snappy the Snarlmuffin”).

This photo was snapped after our move, late last summer, and she’s in her favorite position:  my side of the bed.


What is your favorite dog breed?

A to Z Challenge, Day 3: C Is For Cat

Of course, I have to feature my cat!  I have three, but this is the baby.  His name is Kolya and he’s a ham.

Nadya is the middle and the only girl cat; she’s sitting on my lap as I type this (but will be featured in a future post).

Boria is our bruiser, and he is our oldest boycat.  He’s huge – not fat, but really, really muscular.  He can jump from the floor six feet into the air from a sitting start.  o.O…

Kolya’s favorite thing to do, when I’m working at my desk, is to stretch up on his hind paws and bat things off the surface of my desk.

We’ll see if he survives to the end of the Challenge… πŸ™‚

What kind of pet person are you?

A to Z Challenge, Day 2: B Is For Blogging!

Of COURSE B is for Blogging!  After all, it’s the A-Z Challenge, right?

I think blogging is one of the most awesome things to come out of the social media explosion.  Yes, Facebook is popular.  Instagram is everywhere.  Tweet is now a word for something you do on the internet.  But blogging is a game-changer.


Writers have always wanted to write and many of them want to share what they write.  Blogs allow us to do that in a self-driven way that sets us free from having to conform to, well, anybody’s rules.  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time as a blogger for the last six years and plan to continue for many more.

Blogging may go in and out of fashion, (last year, it was “blogging is dead, move to Facebook,” this year it’s “blogs are coming back because readers want actual content,”), but regardless of that, I will keep going in my little corner of the Blogosphere.  That’s not to say I’ll ignore the others, just that I think blogging is fun, easy, and here to stay.

What about you?

What do you enjoy most about writing, or reading, blogs?

Enjoy the April blogging challenge, and let me know if you’re participating so I can visit you too!

A to Z Challenge, Day 1: A Is For A. Catherine Noon!

Today begins the A-Z Challenge.  I’m your host of this little corner of the blogosphere.  Call me Noony.

A little more about me, since A, after all, is for meeee!  πŸ™‚  I love to write stories, about pretty much anything, and I’m an avid knitter.  I love to make things with my hands and have a mix of media in which I like to work that ranges from thousands of years old (making Ukrainian decorated eggs, called “pysanky”), to very present-day (I love playing on the web and blogging, web design, and social media).  Folks think I’m a cat person, and I adore my cats, but I have a dog that holds a special place in my heart (a loud one – when she barks, you can hear her down the block – WOOF!).

Over the next month, we’ll be going through the alphabet and talking about everything from, well, A to Z.  So my first entry for you is a question:

What do you think of when you hear “From A to Z”?

Enjoy the April blogging challenge, and let me know if you’re participating so I can visit you too!


β€œIt takes courage to grow up and become who you really are.”
– E.E. Cummings

The Chicagoland Shifters series:
Book 1 BURNING BRIGHT, available from Samhain Publishing.

Book 2 TIGER TIGER, available from Samhain Publishing. An All Romance eBooks Bestseller!

The Persis Chronicles:

Check out EMERALD FIRE, available from Torquere Books.

Check out “Seeking Hearts“, available from Torquere Books.

Check out COOK LIKE A WRITER , available from Barnes and Noble.
Check out “Taking a Chance“, available from Torquere Books!

My links: Blog | Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | LinkedIn | Pandora 

Knoontime Knitting:  Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Ravelry
Noon and Wilder links: Blog | Website | Facebook
The Writer Zen Garden:  The Writers Retreat Blog | Forum | Facebook | Twitter | Meetup

Happy Birthday Noon and Wilder!

Rachel and I decided it was time to grow up and have a real blog, one where we can talk about real stuff – you know, the important things:  writing, coffee, cats, and chocolate.  WC3.

Sounds like a plan.

In all seriousness, we felt it was time to have a non-NSFW (Not Safe For Work) blog where we can chat about our favorite topics, and keep Taurus and Taurus for its original purpose – bringing you snippets, flash fiction, and excerpts of Stories That Make You Late For Work!

I hope you’ll stop on by, because we’ll need your support!  I signed us up for the A to Z Blog Challenge – that’s right, I’m doing TWO challenges!  Why?

Because it’s fun!  Join us!