Saturday, May 1, 2010



For the past five weeks I've been introducing readers to characters from "Awakening Avery," my new release about a recent widow who experiences a remarkable summer of faith and self-discovery in the months following her husband's death.

Avery's Elkins Thompson's failure to face her husband's illness leaves her, and her family, floundering after his death. She finally agrees to a nostalgic request from her oldest son to return to the family's Anna Maria Island vacation spot. With a little help from some quirky, new-found friends, Avery enters into a summer house swap with a most intriguing and complicated man. As they step into one another's messy, complex worlds, they begin an email correspondence that leads to a summer of spiritual and emotional re-awakening for both families . . . and particularly for Avery.

Avery reaches into her heart, accessing priceless bits of personal wisdom from her internal mothering manual in the hope that she can pull her adult children out of their spiritual malaise. Her "food is love," philosophy is being challenged by Oprah, but she has some other mothering tips in her arsenal, and she's in a no-holds-barred battle to rescue her family.

Mothers' wisdom is the theme this week, and in honor of Mother's Day, I'm giving away a custom-designed silver necklace created by Nicole Lefebvre of Sterling Obsession, just for the launch of "Awakening Avery." The all Sterling Silver, 20" rolo chain, holds a wire-wrapped, blue chaldony briolette, a ampule of sand and a starfish, all reminoscent of the book's island setting. The winner will have their choice of a heart that says "live, laugh, love" or "Awaken!" that captures the spirit of the book. Like "Awakening Avery," the necklace is a perfect gift for a special lady. Here's how you enter to win:

1. You must be a follower of this blog, or become a follower

2. Share an item of motherly wisdom in the comment box below.

If you'd like additional entries, you can also:

3. Post the "Awakening Avery" cover image on your Facebook page and/or blog and send me a link. You'll get one entry for each.

4. Add "Awakening Avery" to your "books-to-read" shelf on Goodreads. Amazon or Shelfari. Tell me where you added it and get an entry for each one.

5. Add this link for the preview of Chapter One of "Awakening Avery" to your blog sidebar or Facebook page. Send me the link to your site and get one entry for each.

The winner will be drawn on Saturday, May 8th.

Thanks for helping spread the news about "Awakening Avery's" release. And thanks for sharing your motherly advice this week!


  1. "This too shall pass" is one of the many things my mom has said to me. Especially when I was going through my divorce and Ty being in the NICU for 88 days. And those 2 were happening at the same time.

  2. My parents-specifically my dad-would always say "remember who you are" when i would leave the house. they actually still do most times i see them, even today. it helps me remember about my family, my heavenly family and our purpose here on earth-so i can hopefully make good righteous daily decisions.
    Also, i never let a day go by without telling my son that I love him. you never know when you might not ever get that chance again.
    also, life is too short to hold grudges and to remember gossip or bad things about people or loved ones. forgive and let it go!

    PS-also did for additional entries: posted cover of book on my facebook page; also added link for chapter 1 of book on my facebook page. :-)
    couldnt figure out how to do amazon add to books to read :-( it was on my wish list...

  3. another mom"ism"...."MOM!!! How do you spell....?????" her response ALWAYS...."Look it up!"

  4. I'd say to remember that family is most important.

  5. MY mom's best lessons came from her deeds. For years she was the VT companion to a sister in our Ward who had MS and lived way up Mandeville Canyon in Santa Monica, CA. My mom would dutifully drive up the canyon and pick up this sister, take her to their appointments, then return this sister to her home. Her actions spoke louder than her words!

  6. Can't wait to read Awakening Avery. I love your writing voice.

    Darling necklace! Sterling silver jewelry is my favorite!!

    Mothering advice: You are their mother first, and their friend second.

  7. I totally second Kimberly's advice--there seem to be a lot of parents who forget it!

    From my own personal experience--sometimes the one who needs the timeout is Mom! (I'm talking about me, not about my mom, though she would probably agree with this whole-heartedly!)

  8. I am a follower!
    My mother said, "You marry your the friends you date" and I did!

  9. I'm hoping to not be too late for the contest, but even if I am I want you to know that I blogged about your book. I'm already a freind. I also posted about your chapter one. I am not adding your book to my book shelf of books to read. If I'm not too late that would be 4 entires for me. Good luck to you. I can hardly wait to read the entire book.

  10. Thank you for a lovely contest! I am a new follower and subscriber : )

    My mother taught me to always be gracious. No matter how unkind someone was to me, she reminded me to be gracious. She taught me that acting unkind in return would not change them, it would only change me.

    Happy Mother's Day to all Moms : )

    gcwhiskas at aol dot com

  11. Sounds like a great book. I'm a follower.

    Motherly advice: As frustrating as it can be to always have all the friends over, remember that living in the Hangout House makes it easier to keep an eye on not only your own kids, but on the behaviour of their friends as well.

    (Remind me of that tonight when 15 teenagers show up to watch a movie, will ya?)

  12. Ladies, thank you for sharing all your wonderful motherly wisdom. As I read your posts I was comforted to see the similarities in the advice our mothers and we dish out to our children. Sounds like another generation is getting the same messages.

    I drew the name of this week's winner for the beautiful "Awakening Avery" necklace, and the winner is ....................................
    ......Heather Justeson!

    Congratulations, Heather! Thanks to everyone for entering!