Last week, Karen Witemeyer posted a fascinating list of “10 Things You Might Not Know About Me.” All the authors of Inspired by Life…and Fiction thought it was such a fun post and such a great idea that we asked Karen if we could collectively “steal” her idea and each do a similar post. Karen confessed that she’d already stolen the idea from someone else, so we should feel free to steal away! Haha! So without further ado, here’s my list of 10 things you may not have known about me before today.
- You might know that I have four children, but did you know that I gave birth to those kids over three decades? I had our first baby in the 70s, 2 more in the 80s, and our youngest daughter surprised us in 1990. That amounts to more than 33 years with 1 or more children living under our roof—3 of those with 3 teenagers! Is it any wonder Ken and I are enjoying our empty nest so much!?
- All 4 of our kids have the same initials: TAR. My mom used to call them her “little TAR babies” (from the Bre’r Rabbit story.) Of course, she had no room to talk about initials. Before she married my dad, her initials spelled WAR. He bequeathed her a T to make it WART. Needless to say, my mom never owned anything with a monogram. 😉
- My first contract offer for my very first novel, A Vow to Cherish, came the day after I witnessed a murder in our small-town grocery story. Talk about highs and lows! I didn’t actually accept that offer, as I had 2 others that followed quickly, and I ended up going with Bethany House.
- I speak Pig Latin fluently! My parents used to speak that silly language whenever they didn’t want us kids to know what they were talking about. But one night at the dinner table, my dad revealed the secret, and ever since, my brother and sisters and I often try to impress people with our Pig Latin. My mama was not very happy Daddy spilled the beans…until he taught her a new “secret” language called Alfalfa language, which I still can’t speak to this day. And at-thay is-hay a-hay oo-tray ory-stay! 😉
- I play the piano by ear. Not very well, but well enough that I once had a job in the occupational therapy department of a large Jewish nursing home near New York City in which I traveled from wing to wing taking requests on a little rolling keyboard. I butchered many a song, but the sweet residents treated me as if I were Liberace and applauded every effort.
- In high school (and for a short time in college) I was on the debate and forensics teams. I missed an important tournament in order to be crowned homecoming queen, and my debate teammates sent me a congratulatory telegram. (Wow, does that make me feel old!) I still have several “Best Speaker” gavels I won in tournaments, and I like to keep honing my debate skills with my poor husband as a (very able!) opponent.
- Speaking of my husband, I met Ken on a blind date. My best friend in high school was dating Ken’s brother. He and I had each just broken up with someone, and my friend and Ken’s brother were tired of hearing about our heartbreak, so they thought we may as well meet. Little did they know we’d beat them to the altar fifteen months later!
- I’m the oldest of 4 girls and a boy. Ken is the oldest of 4 boys and a girl. (For a while, one of my sisters dated one of his brothers.) They say 2 “oldests” should never marry, but after 42 years of wedded bliss, we beg to differ!
- My talented husband had two books published before my first book ever came out. His children’s picture books are Stick Horse (Green Tiger Press 1991) and It’s Probably Good Dinosaurs are Extinct (Simon & Schuster 1993). The dino book also got picked up for a 2nd grade reader, but the original art got stuck at the printer in Japan for many months after the 1995 Kobe earthquake. It’s safely home now and hangs in Ken’s studio.
- I grew up on a farm where there once lived 40 cats! My dad allowed them because they kept the mice population down in the barns and grain bins. My favorite kitty was a long-haired gray and white cat named Dixie. I’d climb on my bike, stretch out one leg, and Dixie would scamper all the way up to perch on my shoulder. We’d ride like that all over the farm.
I can’t wait to see the lists from the other authors of Inspired by Life…and Fiction. Now, what are some things we might not know about YOU?