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First Christmas

Fixit Day and Saving Frogs

Our metal garage door in the living room needed new springs and some adjustment so it could operate the way it should. As the two-door specialists were on their scaffolding, one of them greeted a bright green frog who had jumped inside the room from the patio.

I was downstairs in a flash to try to save him. When I moved from Sebastopol, I brought a whole bucket of these little green frogs from my garden there to come live with me in Santa Rosa. Bright green frogs are not native to this area, so I knew he was a many-times descendant of the original batch of frogs I’ve been growing ever since. And he was big!

He abruptly hopped under his scaffolding, out of my reach. I was worried he’d be crushed when they closed up shop, finishing their job. I asked them to try to be careful. I wanted to save him.

I went outside to water and when I came back the scaffolding was down and the men were cleaning up.

“The frog!” I shouted.

“We got him. He’s safe. Put him back in your flower garden.”

I could have kissed the guy I was so happy.

While these men were working, the stereo man came to connect some speakers we’d never connected, which was the buyer’s request. Later in the day, he asked me if I was some kind of author.

“Yes. I write romance.”

“You do audiobooks?”

“Every one of them.”

“Oh, great. I’m going to download one now.” He put back his earpieces, adjusted his phone and began playing Accidental SEAL on audio. Later on he told me my stories were “like Lee Child but with more sex.”

The man who raises the palm trees we’re buying mentioned he’d checked out my books, and told us, “You should do one about a landscaper.” I didn’t want to tell him that the only landscaper I had in my books was the bad guy.

It’s getting closer. I’m picking out fabric for the Diesel Pusher, the new and improved Romance Rider. Our first trip will be to see the Fall colors in Vermont.

Life goes on one day at a time. It will be 3 weeks now, and my living here will come to an end. And the rest of my life will never be the same. Until then, I’m breathing in and breathing out, studying and marking things I want to remember later on. It’s kind of delicious when you know it’s finite.

Makes me appreciate the beauty of what I’ve created even more.





This Post Has 15 Comments

  1. Packing up and leaving all the memories you created there will be bittersweet. Think of the adventures you will be going on. When you said Vermont in the fall. I thought that is on my bucket list. To see all 50 states at certain times of the year. The northeast with the changing of the colors. I just imagine that pictures don’t even come close.

    I laughed when the landscaper said you should write about them. Glad you are making new converts.

    1. Pam,
      I so agree. I’ve wanted to see the Fall colors my whole adult life. Time to do it! Before, with raising the 4 kids and my very busy real estate business, as well as all the traveling I did for the sports teams my kids participated on, and later in college played on, I just never had the time to travel like that. When we did, we went to Europe, or took the kids on a cruise, or something like that.

      So this is our time. There’s a whole part of the country I’ve never explored and that makes giving up what I have now to go do it all the easier!

  2. How exciting!!! My husband and I are retired and we took a 10-week trip to the Northeast last fall. We left Colorado on August 1 and returned October 12. We spent time in Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ohio, New York, Maine, Vermont, Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Niagara Falls. I might have missed some places. We have very fond memories of all places we visited. Wishing you safe travels and exciting adventures. You will have a wonderful time and see some wonderful sights. To quote Dr. Seuss “Oh, the Places You’ll Go! Have fun!!!

    1. Lirva,
      I love that Dr. Seuss book and I’ve given it to people many, many times. Now it will apply to me. What a wonderful trip you had. This time it will be a little shorter, because of the upcoming weather and things I’ve already committed to signing-wise, but next year!

      I’m finding that there are a lot of us from California who are getting out, and hitting the road. But I’ll still have a home base here. And that’s been fun, too, picking out colors, designing an all-white kitchen, which I’ve never had!

  3. Sharon, I’m still amazed that you’re moving, but what a way to do it! You’ll be exploring new places as & seeing your country at the same time. Perhaps you can transplant some of your Frogs to family to look after until you create your new home down the line?
    Love the Lee Child comment. That’s quite a compliment, but thoroughly deserved. I love all your books & the wonderfully vivid characters you create. The Sleeper Seal one is fab. & i look forward to more collaborations.
    Deep breaths & best wishes xx

    1. Allinson,
      Thanks for the compliment on my Sleeper SEAL. Yes, we’re doing Silver SEALs next year and I’m going to be writing that book after I finish the next one in my KW series. Thanks so much!

      I love the idea of transplanting my frogs. I’m just wondering how I catch them. In Sebastopol, I knew exactly where they liked to hang out. But here, they’ve had such a huge area to live in, they’ve just dispersed all over the place. But the next green frog I find perhaps I’ll try to capture and take to the apartment.

      Funny how I started collecting frogs before I even started writing them!

      Yes, several people have messaged me to say I should use that in my advertising. I think I will!

  4. Sharon, I love your updates, thank you! My first thought when reading about the green fogs you brought with you from Sebastopol, was that they represented your Seal family. Of course you would not leave them behind. You mention the fog print tattoos of Seal members in your books. Maybe you should take a few frogs with you to your new home, and start a new family there too. Love your books, best regards! Hugs and safe travels!

    1. Debra,
      LOL, yes, I’m going to see what I can do about saving frogs. Boy, that could take a whole day (and time is not what I have). But you know what, if any of them want an adventure, and want to stay with me, I just think they’ll appear. Now how’s that for living in a fantasy world of my own making?

      It could happen, and yes, I’ll update you all!

    1. Robbie,
      You are very welcome. It also helps me to deal with this big change, to be in contact, and to write about how I feel about it. Of course, writing is my medicine, as are all of you wonderful people who “talk” to me wherever you can find me.

  5. Sharon,

    You are truly remarkable. I myself couldn’t do what you are doing. The blessing is you have your husband on this grand new adventure. And, I do expect some of your novels down the road to have some of your adventures in them.

    Many continued blessings.

    1. Ginger,
      I truly am looking forward to the adventure. Nothing stays the same forever, even though I’ve been compared to Half Dome when it comes to being flexible. Well, I guess it depends.

      But yes, time to do it when everyone’s healthy and wanting to drive long distances. But I’ll be looking for little places along the way we might want to look to plant frogs and a garden! LOL.

  6. You are a loving, caring and gentle soul. My heart is warmed that you cared for the frog. You are one of the kindest and bravest people that I have ever known. You are about to embark on one of the most enlightening experiences of your life. Proceed with the awe of a child and the wisdom of a romance writer. Be open to everything and attached to nothing. You will be blessed. xoxoxoxox, YP

    1. Ahhh, J.D. thank you so much for those beautiful words! I like that, “awe of a child and the wisdom of a romance writer.” Love it.

      It does seem like the right choice, now that I’m settled with it. Took me a little teetering on the edge, but I’m glad I’m embracing it. Everything is finite–everything, so walking away from this property is like going through some golden doorway to the next adventure. And there’s no such thing as one better than the other adventure, just being open, as you said.

      Thanks for following along with my steps. I think one of the places I land will be closer to you, and that will indeed be a blessing.


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