Getting Out of Bed by Stevie Turner

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Stevie Turner
Posted by Stevie Turner

For all of you living with stroppy teenagers, I thought I’d tell you of the time back in 1995 when my then 13 year old son Leon was at his worst…

Leon never wanted to get out of bed in the mornings.  On school days it was the devil of a job getting him out of the door.  He would lie in bed later and later.  All the shouting and cajoling had no effect.

It got to the stage where my husband had to physically lift him out of bed and put him in the car, still in his pyjamas.  He would then get dressed in the car as my husband drove him to school.  He would have had no breakfast, as he had refused to get out of bed.

This carried on for some months, until I returned to work.  I made an arrangement with another mother that my husband would take their daughter to school along with Leon, and she would bring Leon home at the end of the day, where my mum would be waiting for him.

On the evening before I went back to work I warned Leon that we would be taking one of his female classmates to school, and that he needed to get out of bed earlier in order to get dressed.  Did it work?  No… it did not.

There was Leon sitting half asleep in the car in his pyjamas, and a dainty teenage girl sitting on the back seat trying not to grin.  Of course he now couldn’t get dressed because the girl was watching, and so he turned up for school in his pyjamas.  He had to run into the boys’ toilets, get dressed, and then bring his pyjamas out to my husband who was waiting in the car.

Funnily enough that was the first and last time he ever went to school in his PJ’s, and he never had any trouble getting out of bed after that.  Now I have to laugh when he complains that his own teenage daughter won’t get out of bed in the mornings!



Stevie Turner works part-time as a medical secretary in a busy NHS hospital, and writes suspense, women’s fiction, and humorous novels in her spare time. She won a New Apple Book Award in 2014 and a Readers’ Favorite Gold Award in 2015 for her book ‘A House Without Windows’, and one of her short stories was published in the Creative Writing Institute’s 2016 anthology ‘Explain!’.

Stevie lives in the East of England, and is married with two sons and four grandchildren. She has also branched out into the world of audio books, screenplays, and translations. Most of her novels are now available as audio books, and one screenplay, ‘For the Sake of a Child’, won a silver award in the Spring 2017 Depth of Field International Film Festival. It is now being read by a New York media production company.

Stevie can be contacted at the following email address:

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All I Want for Christmas

This post is by M. K. Waller.

PHOTO PROMPT © Douglas M. MacIlroy

I heard them talking.

Daddy said, She wants a pogo stick.

Mama said, She has enough presents.

Santa brought a pogo stick.

Daddy smiled. Sturdy.

We went outside.

Mama frowned. Don’t fall.

She’s fine. Daddy lifted me on.

I bounced. The pogo stick didn’t.

Daddy frowned. Spring’s tight. You’re not heavy enough.

Daddy tried. He bounced down the sidewalk.

Mr. Smith came over. Can I try?

Daddy jumped off. Sure.

Mr. Smith bounced down the driveway. This is fun.

Let me try again, Daddy.

Daddy bounced up the driveway.

Mama brought me my doll.

She’s right. I have enough presents.


I wrote this 100-word story for Friday Fictioneers. The photo prompt is a plesiosaurus, but I saw a spring. The PHOTO PROMPT is courtesy of Douglas M. MacIlroy, who holds the copyright.

First Job

This post by Jennifer Flaten

My daughter officially started her first part-time job. She is working for a local restaurant. She is super excited to be making money, plus she is the first of the twins to get a job, which gives her bragging rights.

Her excitement about her new job has me thinking about my first job. When I was 14 my mother had me enroll in a teen job bank run by the local bank. I can’t imagine something like this would fly in this day and age.

Kids put in there names and were matched up with homeowners looking for cheap labor. In my case, I got a woman looking for “light” housekeeping. She had a cute house within walking distance of mine.


She wanted dusting and vacuuming etc, nothing a teen can’t handle, except for the birds. She had several large parrots, a cockatoo and a cockatiel. I don’t mind birds, my family has owned parakeets and even had a cockatoo but not more than one at a time!


Her house was loud! I mean LOUD. All the squawking-constantly. The birds didn’t seem too enamored of me and they weren’t afraid to show it. I didn’t last there too long. For a long time afterwards I would always imagine I heard her birds squawking when I walked by her house on my way to my new job.

What was your first job?

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your Profile PhotoThis post by Jennifer Flaten

I love school supply time. Okay, so I don’t love having to purchase an entire warehouse full of supplies, but I do love the idea of all those fresh new notebooks, pencils and yes, even tubes of glue. There is so much promise in all those lovely blank notebooks. They are  just waiting to be filled.

And, what could be better than a box of freshly sharpened color pencils. We have an entire container of now dull colored pencils. Yes, we have multiple pencil sharpeners, but who wants to stand there sharpening a pile of pencils!

When the kids were smaller and still did art projects and coloring I would love the sound of them sifting through the crayon/colored pencils looking for the perfect crayon. In order to be perfect it had to be the right color and it had to be sharpened or at least not worn down to a dull nub.

One of my daughters refused to use the “nakedy” crayons, those that had no wrapper, she didn’t like how the crayon felt in her hand.

As the kids get older their school supply lists change from crayons, markers and colored pencils to loose leaf paper, post it notes and binders. There is nothing fun about purchasing 15 black 3” three ring binders.

I might just have to pick up a box of colored pencils and an adult coloring book just for myself. How about you, do you love new supplies?

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propic11_1_1This post by L.Leander, Author of Fearless Fiction

Last weekend we had my husband’s son and family at the lake for the weekend. Altogether there were eleven of us. Lucky for us, we have the best couple that camp next to us and they offered their camper to the kids so they wouldn’t have to pay for tent camping. TheyP1130558 also offered their camper in the woods for the overflow. That became a necessity, as we have redone our camper and there is now no room for guests to sleep.

It was a scorching hot, muggy weekend, but since all campers had a/c we made it through. Ralph’s son has five children, ranging in age from two – nineteen years old. It wasn’t too hard to find things for everyone to do because our campground has everything. The sixteen year old loved the golf carts and became the official limo driver. She even took our little Patty dog on rides and Patty was in seventh heaven!

The baby (boy) was teething and cried almost constantly but we managed to get through it. The next child is 6 (boy), and he just wanted to do things with his dad (mostly swimming).   Next is a boy whose only want was to fish with dad (which they did and he caught a tiny fish and threw it back) and the next two are girls, 16 and 18. The nineteen -year old brought her fiancé and his mother.

file2971342078807Ralph cooked all weekend and enjoyed it, but got a little tired after the second day. His son was in charge of the campfire and it never went out. I ate my share of marshmallows and am not sure I want them again for a while.

It was Christmas in July at the campground and one campsite won the best decorated. We had a golf-cart parade in the afternoon on Saturday, and there was also a hayride. Add the swimming pool, hot tub and ice-cream shop and everyone was happy.

I learned a couple of unusual campfire cooking tips from our daughter-in-law that I’ll pass2012-09-29_17-41-02_140 along just in case you camp or know someone who does.

Omelets in a Bag

Use sandwich size re-sealable bags. Put a couple of eggs in the bag and squish the eggs a bit. Add anything you wish for your omelet such as tomatoes, ham, mushrooms, onions, green peppers and whatever else you like. Drop the bag in a large pan of boiling water (no more than three or they will touch and ruin). When the eggs are done, lift out of the water, open the bag and put on a plate. Yum!

Stuffed Bananas


Peanut Butter

Small Chocolate Chips

Slice banana lengthwise, spread peanut butter on each side and fill with chocolate chips. Wrap in heavy tin foil and put in the campfire. These are delicious, but since the bananas got left home, we made up a new recipe that was just as good.

Tonka Pie (Pudgy Pie) Banana Delights

Butter two slices of bread and put in the pie maker. Spread the inside of the bread with peanut butter. Add Banana Crème pie filling and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Sit pie maker in campfire until done. Delish!

The weekend wound down on Sunday and as everyone was packing the baby found a big file0001464074176mud puddle. Before we caught him he had mud all over his new shoes, in his hair and was soaking wet. It was so cute, but meant his dad had to take him to the outside shower, clean him up and put new clothes on him.

I doubt whether the family was as tired as Ralph and I were – Monday we rested all day. Since we lead such a quiet life this was quite a change!

Wherever you are, I hope you are enjoying the days of summer. School is right around the corner and after that, cold weather. We are planning to enjoy every day we have left!


Books by L.Leander:

Inzared Queen of the Elephant Riders Video Trailer

Inzared, Queen of the Elephant Riders







Inzared, The Fortune Teller Video Trailer

Inzared, The Fortune Teller (Book Two)







13 Extreme Tips to Self Publishing







13 Extreme Tips to Marketing an Ebook




You can also find L.Leander here:

L.Leander Books

Amazon Author Page

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L.Leander’s Book Reviews and Interviews





Mom I’m Bored

your Profile PhotoThis post by Jennifer Flaten

My son is taking an Avid class this summer. Today they had a lively discussion about whether or not it is good to be bored. I asked him what position he took in the debate, and he said he took the position that it isn’t good to be bored. My mother happened to be visiting today and she pointed out that when she was a kid, saying you were bored ensured that you got the nastiest chore your mother could find…consequently you were “never” bored.

As a reader/daydreamer/people watcher/crafter who never has enough time to do the fun things she likes to do I said that I didn’t think you could ever be bored. There is ALWAYS something to do.

The kids were not impressed with my line of reasoning. My middle daughter said she thought it was possible to bored in school and that if you were bored it was a failure on the teacher’s part.

So what do you think? As an adult are you bored? Do you agree that boredom in school is a teacher problem or is it a kid problem?

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School Sounds Good

your Profile PhotoThis post by Jennifer Flaten

Normally we have the kids enrolled in a summer school program. It helps keep them active and it gives me a little break from them during the long days of summer.

This year the girls are taking a 6 week credit gym class. This means they can get their gym requirement out of the way this summer and have an extra hour for a class they want or need during the school year. It is an intense class. It is 4 hours of physical activity. For instance, last week it was 2 hours of flag football, followed by 2 hours in the pool.

They come home from this and they are pretty done for the day. Both of them are getting a lovely tan though!

My son has a special AVID (it is a special college prep class) starting for the second half of summer school. Until then we’ve decided he can hang out at home, alone, while my husband and I are at work. For the most part it’s went well except during the first week. On the second day of his home alone adventure the cat caught a mouse. My son didn’t want the cat to eat the mouse so he had to chase the cat around the house until he could get the mouse away from the cat. Stressful.

On the fourth day Ginger threw up behind our couch leaving my son to make sure she wasn’t seriously ill and clean up the mess. He did both very well, but by now staying home is losing its luster and he is wondering when he can go to summer school it is much more relaxed there!

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The Fresh Breath of Spring


This post by L.Leander, Author of Fearless Fiction

It’s time for planting and all around us are farms with tractors making rows and planting seeds. The smell of the fresh dirt never ceases to make me feel good – a deep earthy scent that you know will soon yield crops.


We have many Amish farms in our community and we see them with teams of horses and discs as they prepare their own fields for planting. It’s like being in a time standing still but I’d venture to say a lot more work than the farmers using machinery.


We’ve been planting, too. Last year my husband planted a wildflower garden for me just like one my mother had at our farm when we were young. It was such a good feeling to see and smell the flowers and watch them sway in the breeze and open up to the sun. This year we cleaned up our rock garden at the lake and totally planted all wildflowers. I can’t wait to see it bloom. Our tulips are up and beautiful as are our daffodils. Some of last year’s flowers are popping up through the ground and each day they get a little taller.


Ralph has planted his favorite (hollyhocks and sunflowers). Last year he had twelve, eight, six and four foot sunflowers that were grand. They are majestic and this year he planted all the seeds he took off the heads, plus more packages. We may end up with a back yard full of sunflowers!

When I was a young wife and mother I loved putting up food for the winter, but I wasn’t so good in the garden. The want-to was there, but I didn’t seem to have the know-how and a lot of my plants died. Thank goodness for a mother-in-law who grew a huge garden and gave me lots of fresh vegetables and fruits to can.

I’m lucky to have a husband with a very green thumb. We’ve given up planting vegetables and fruits and switched to flowers. I do a lot of the prep work and I love raking and clearing the spots for seeds to be sown. I even got to plant a few seeds of my own, with Father Nature standing over me, of course.

Now all there is to do is wait. Flowers, vegetables, fruits – all reaching to the sun and begging for gentle rain. I can’t wait for the corn to be ripe because in our area there are big corn roasts almost every weekend when it’s ready. Nothing better than getting an ear of corn from the roaster, dipping it in a can of melted butter and standing around with friends laughing as the butter drips down your arms 0nto the ground.


I’m ready to enjoy summer (already have a hoarde of books to read, writing, knitting, coloring, journaling and sewing). We are moving to the lake lot next week and won’t move back home until October 15. What I most look forward to in the summer is the sound of loons on the lake, geese returning home, red-winged blackbirds, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, cardinals and blue jays all chattering at the bird feeder, plus the squirrels and chipmunks yipping and gathering peanuts in their cheeks. Throughout all this gentle patter I sit on the deck, watch the lake, and listen to children laughing as they  play in the water while I read. Ah, the glory of it all!

Hummingbird Feedermale cardinal




L.Leander is the author of the Inzared series (available on Amazon):


Inzared the Fortune Teller

and books for authors (also available on Amazon):

10 Extreme Tips to Publishing an e-Book

10 Extreme Tips to Marketing an e-Book

She may be found on these locations:

L.Leander Books on

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It’s a Classic

This post by Jennifer Flaten

How do you feel about “Classic Literature”? Is is something that you seek out or is it something that you vaguely remember reading for your school work and after slogging through ‘Moby Dick’ it is something you’ve vowed never to read again?

Personally, I had to read a lot of “classic literature” for my english classes, yet I still feel that I missed out on some, or might have appreciated them more if I wasn’t forced to read them.

Maybe it isn’t even the reading part, it was the dissecting them in English class. Nothing will turn you off a book then listening to a bunch of 12th graders parse what the author meant….or maybe that is just me.

Really, I liked ‘Lord of the Flies’ and a lot of the Shakespeare when I read them on my own, but listening to my classmates dissect what the whale symbolized made me want to bead them about the head with a harpoon.

The girls have an end of the year english project that includes reading one “classic” and one contemporary book and doing a compare and contrast.

One kid found it easy to pick out her two books. She selected an Agatha Christie and a George Orwell, although she hated ‘Animal Farm’ with an undying passion so I am not sure how she is going to react to ‘1984’.

My other daughter is struggling to find something she will enjoy, and she is the type of reader who must enjoy what she is reading or she won’t do it.

She is interested Jane Austen but felt a couple of the books were a little long. Hey it is staller de ilustracion digital - 428chool work after all she wants to get it done with as little energy expended as possible. I encouraged her to try Emma because it seemed the most lighthearted of the lot.

So far she hasn’t cracked ‘Emma’ open but she did take one of my SciFi (lite) books ‘Carter and Lovecraft’ and I am very interested to see how she contrasts that to ‘Emma’!

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Culture’em early!

ccnancyjardineThis post is by Nancy Jardine.

Our local schools have recently had their 2 week spring holiday. When I was teaching, those two weeks were avidly awaited – they were an opportunity to recharge my batteries and snatch a short break in cultural venues steeped in history like Vienna, Barcelona, or Mediterranean islands like Malta or Crete. The destinations never needed long haul flights, European cities being easily achievable in a couple of hours from a Scottish airport.

Now it’s my grand kids who’re locked into the school holiday system so, as a regular carer, I’m back to taking spring holiday breaks. We’ll work up to a whole week away…but not just yet… that’ll take a wee bit of practising! At present it’s a ‘Day Out’, one at a time.

Crathes Castle taken 2013

Last week we picnicked at 16th century Crathes Castle, along with my daughter who had a day off work. After a long visit to a brand new soft play area, there was heaps of grass to play ball on and space to throw a Frisbee. My 4½ year old granddaughter wanted to go into the walled garden having remembered the fountain and various other interesting features from previous visits, her recall of things quite astounding.


April 2016
My grandson, only just turned 2 years old, was convinced it was Tinkerbell’s Castle and wanted to go inside, though an inside tour hadn’t been on the original plan for the day. With two adults it was doable—one adult and two little kids not so much.

Aberdeenshire is coined as ‘castle country’. It has the greatest amount of castles per acre in Scotland and there’s a plethora of them to visit, some of them now administered by The National Trust of Scotland of which I’ve been a member for the last thirty years. The interiors are all distinctively different, well preserved, and full of ancient treasures so it’s with trepidation that I enter the portals with a two year old, but I think that you’ve got to culture’em early!

Crathes Castle is set in magnificent grounds of around 600 acres which are typical of other grand estates in Royal Deeside. Aberdeenshire castles have an impressive history that’s documented but also shrouded in legend. The present Crathes Castle, completed c. 1596 and which took around 40 years to build, was the home of the Burnett family for many centuries and was only given over to The National Trust for Scotland organisation in 1959, when the new Burnett heir, resident in New Zealand, couldn’t maintain the property.

via amazon

Legend plays a part in the story because it’s said that the most prized treasure of Crathes Castle is ‘The Horn of Leys’ which Alexander de Burnard received from King Robert The Bruce in 1323 as his badge of office as forester (overseer of the estates). ‘The Horn of Leys’ is a highly decorated carved ivory horn which now hangs encased behind glass in the High Hall at Crathes Castle;  the horn symbol also a part of the Heraldic Coat of Arms of the Burnett family (the name change from Burnard was a common trait) . Photography is not allowed in the castle but the general idea at left of the horn has been taken from a book on Amazon. (I’m not sure I’d be willing to pay over £200 for this copy, though)

My problem with visiting even fairly well known castles is that there’s always something new that I’ve not absorbed on earlier visits that just begs to be researched. I’d never thought before of what the first family dwelling of the Burnetts  might have been, i.e. before the present castle was built, but it’s an intriguing question that begs to be researched. The problem is that there’s no documentation from the early 1300s to clarify the answer!

If you’re interested in learning more there are some scant details about our visit to the castle and an intriguing mystery about the first home of the Burnett family who lived on the Crathes estate on my BLOG .

What do you think about culturing ’em early? 

Whatever you’re doing this weekend – enjoy it!

Nancy Jardine writes:

Historical Romantic AdventuresCFS End Sept 2015 




Contemporary Romantic Mysteries3 mysteries




Time travel historical adventure for teensThe_Taexali_Game_Cover_for_Kindle
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