Menagerie’s Halloween Haunt – Winner!

October 24, 2008

Our Winner is…..

Krista from Missouri


We had a VERY CLOSE second place entry.  Only 3/10ths of a point separated them! 

Here is the breakdown of the top-ten (based on three judges, independently scoring… and, avering the scores):

We had such a blast reading the stories, posts, and book recommendations!  For those who participated, we really appreciate it!

Krista, our grand prize winner, will win the HALLOWEEN BASKET O’ FUN! 

Madaline and Anna will each receive a Halloween Suprise!

Best to all!

Happy Haunting!



October 22, 2008

well, my friends

the day is here

when stories & tales

fill us with fear!


your ghost stories

so filled with fright

brought us plenty o’ scares

and chills of delight!


but, in the event

your story’s untold

you must send it TODAY

for us all to behold!


The contest is ending

today, don’t you see?

To win a basket of prizes

Here your entry must be!


An email, a post

a comment, or two

filled with horrors

or, just a plain “boo!”


OK, Readers… Bloggers… Writers… Kids… Friends…







The Sunday Salon: This Week’s Books & News

October 18, 2008

This Week’s Reads, News & Updates

I am exhausted.  I’ve definitely caught a flu bug, cold, or something.  But, I’ve had a lot on my mind and my “plate,” so I haven’t gotten sufficient rest.  I think I’m cranky (don’t you just hate that when you feel that way?).  For this week’s The Sunday Salon, I just wanted to update my co-bloggers, readers & friends on this past week’s “haps” and share my “stuff.”

  • NEW BLOGSITE:  I’m undergoing a site renovation.  I have been working on a new theme, colors, etc.  It’s coming along nicely.  I’m going to try to “self-host,” but I am totally scared.  I have not the slightest clue as to what I’m doing. Hopefully, the transition will work out okay and I’ll figure out the self-hosting rather quickly.  I just can’t wait to show everybody the new, improved site… and am hopeful that you all enjoy it.
  • THIS WEEK’S BOOKS:  I’m doing some book tours, so I haven’t posted as many reviews as I usually do.  I have reviewed The Lost Diary of Don Juan (post coming October 30th) and am currently finishing up Life After Genius (posting October 29th).  What I can report is that I did enjoy both reads and the forthcoming reviews are favorable.  I was able to post my review of The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks.  My favorite part of this post is that somebody actually wanted to pick up one of his books to “check him out,” and noted so on my post.  She wanted to know my favorite one, if I could only recommend one… it was so hard… like picking out your favorite child.  So, I emailed her.  It was sooo cool!

  • THIS WEEK’S ENTERTAINMENT NEWS & HEADLINES:  I’m pleased to report that each week I will be sharing a sprinkling of entertainment news & current headlines.  I’m focusing on the news that isn’t necessarily “mainstream,” and is fun or quirky.  If you haven’t watched the “Joe The Plumber” video, it’s worth the couple of minutes.  If you caught it on TV, don’t waste the time… but, it’s pretty humorous, the press, that it.  DWTS is coming up tomorrow, so I’m looking forward to writing an update on the show.  The video herein is the most current ABC video feed on DWTS and shows the “countdown clock” as to the next show (fun, huh?).  My brother, Bill, keeps saying… “Cheryl Burrrrrr…..” because of how the announcer says “Cheryl Burke.”  Now the kids always say, when talking about DWTS, “Cheryl Burrrrrr….” 
  • [clearspring_widget title=”Dancing With The Stars on” wid=”47df2410700a0b8c” pid=”48f43d5f4dce5a55″ width=”300″ height=”250″ domain=””]

  • CONTESTS:  Well, I’ve written and reminded about Menagerie’s Halloween Haunt.  Entries are due by the 22nd.  I was really hoping for more entries due to the size of the prize…. so, if you or your kids have a story, a post, or a referral on a good scary book…. get your comment posted or email me at  I have a Second Chance Drawing for those who post the buttons on their blog post or sidebar, as well.  For all of you who have entered… thanks so much for your participation!  I appreciate it!  My kids are so excited to help me judge the entries!

  • BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH:  A Novel Menagerie and Thursday’s Thoughts are focused on promoting Breast Cancer Awareness.  I’ve prepared a button for your site, if you are interested in spreading the word… mainly to remind the women you know about self-exams and the benefit of mamograms.  Thursday’s Thought’s Contest for the week hasn’t received as many entries as I’d hoped for.  Since the “winning prize” is a donation to charity in the name of the winner, I may extend Thursday’s Thoughts for another week, rather than doing a new MEME/Contest next week.  I’m really keeping my finger’s crossed on spreading the word via posts and buttons (badges).  Thanks to Shana and Yasmin for all of their support on this effort.

Well, it’s time to take this cranky butt to bed.  Yes, that’s where I need to be!  I look forward to posting this week on The Fall Into Reading 2008 Challenge (where I’m at), Lit Flicks Challenge Update, and hopefully Home Girl and My Husband’s Sweethearts.

A Quilt Give-A-Way & Menagerie Give-A-Way

October 16, 2008



I am a total GIVEAWAY FREAK!  I just love doing Thursday’s Thoughts and making things for winners!  I just sent Alyce and Trisha some handmade book-floss book marks and hope they like them.

But, the award for the Halloween Haunt… this piece d’ resistance will definitely be LARGE, OVERFLOWING, FUN, AND TOTALLY COOL! The basket will be sent to only ONE LUCKY WINNER of The Halloween Haunt.  Because there are cool decorations for your house, I want to allow for enough shipping time for the basket to arrive.  Because of this, I have to have the enteries in by the 22nd… that’s SIX DAYS FOLKS

For the giveaway, all you need to do is submit a Halloween story (it can be a creative story or a true one), some words about your favorite scariest book, scary memories… or whatever tale you think will fit in the “Scary Halloween” Genre.  Or, have your kids write a Halloween story and submit theirs!  You can post about it on your blog and put the link in the comments section, or, you can just email me at and I’ll post it for you.  You don’t want to miss out, trust me on that one!  I’d want this basket!  Also, if you post a badge on your site… I’ll enter you for a “Second Chance Drawing.”  The prize for that is a secret, but you won’t be disappointed!  Boo!

Here are the badges… plenty to chose from!







The link to the Contest Site is:


For the other GIVEAWAY…. the quilt.  This is not mine… this is from Pigtails and Snails.   It’s radically gorgeous!  I’m entering~!  Here’s the juice:

Here’s the Link:

Here’s the quilt:

But, the contest is up on the 17th.. so hurry!


Wednesday Wrap-Up: What’s Wonderful About Wednesday & Wordless Wednesdays

October 8, 2008

I usually do a “What’s Wonderful About Wednesday” on this hump day of the week.  This week, due to the weather changes we’re having in So. Cal., I am suffering a ridiculously horrible allergy attack and sinus migraine.  It’s awful.

So, my friends and fellow bloggers/readers, I’m going to give a short “Wrap Up” today and am thankful for your forgiveness of my lack of imagination and creativity today…


Well, last night’s “elimination night” ended up having nobody be eliminated at all.  Due to Misty May’s injury and her pulling out of the contest, there was no need to let a couple go last night.  So, they all stayed.  Instead, next week’s scores will be combined with this week’s scores and the couple with the lowest combined score will be voted off.  OK, that’s cool with me.

Also, I apparently pissed a few people off with my post about DWTS.  I certainly didn’t mean to offend and it’s strictly MY opinion of the show and the dances.  BTW… I have over 20 years of dance training and performance in my background.  I was a performing arts major in college with my emphasis in musical theater.  Now, that doesn’t make me and expert… but, I’m pretty decent at recognizing excellence at dance vs. awkwardness in dance.  But, to the pissed of people…. I apologize.  Apparently, I need to soften my opinion a bit on this show… as to not further raise any hackles!

But, before I leave this topic… Lance and Lacey have good talent and are being judged a bit unfairly.  Watch them next week and you’ll the technique and ability far outweighs that of say, Rocco or Susan.

I started Yesterday’s Weather by Anne Enright last night.  I’ve completed the first chapter… really liked it, and have started the second.  I read an excellent review on this book in People Magazine, so I am hopeful that I will enjoy this book.  I’ve been looking forward to it. (That’s Anne’s picture to the left.  She won the Man Booker Prize for The Gathering

I would like to thank everybody for their comments and feedback on The Story of Edgar Sawtelle, as well. 

I also have a job interview on Friday… fingers crossed.

Hey… everybody, don’t forget about Menagerie’s Halloween Haunt.  The twins tell me that they want to help judge the scariest story… or tale… or book nomination for the basket.  They are SOOO excited.  This contest is open to anybody and I even had a high school gal submit her creative writing story for school.  So, if your kids want to write a story, submit it!  That’d be super!  Speaking of which, I’m going to Knott’s Scary Farm tomorrow night.  When I went as a high-schooler… I got the PAJEEMERS scared out of me.  As such, I am not really looking forward to going… but, this is important to my daughter… so, off I go.  I should bring pepper spray!  Hee Hee.

Well, I’m off to handle 1 Million “Mom Things” and have soccer practice tonight.  I’m praying this allergy attack will release me, that would be What’s Wonderful About Wednesday!

Oh, I almost forgot… Wordless Wednesday… the man of my life…. so in LOVE!

I just want to hold him, and smell him, and squeeze him!  He’s so cute!

And, for What’s Wonderful About Wednesday…. I’m celebrating my 2-month anniversary of A Novel Menagerie’s Blog!  I am grateful to all of you!




Menagerie’s Halloween Haunt

October 5, 2008

Oh, My Friends….

The Time is Near….

When Gouls, Goblins & Horrors Appear!


Come one, come all … if you dare!

It’s time to put on OUR HALLOWEEN SCARE!