Friday, 7 August 2020

It's Been Two Years: Our Make a Wish Journey


Today, Facebook reminded me that two years ago, Anthony received his welcome package from the
Make a Wish Foundation.  It was an emotional day for all of us.  Anthony got an envelope full of booklets and fun things to help guide him in choosing his wish.

Since then, we have met so many amazing people with some of the biggest hearts in the world.  From the Make a Wish team, to other Make a Wish families, to the RCMP personel who surprised Anthony with fishing gear and other gifts, to all the volunteers and donors at the fundraisers we've attended... we will never be able to say thank you enough times or loud enough to show how much gratitude we feel.

Now, because of Covid, all of the Make a Wish fundraising get togethers had to be cancelled.  We were

scheduled to be at at least one of these to share our story.  Because we can't, I decided to share the speech I was set to give here in hopes that it reaches some people and inspires them to also become a part of the Make a Wish family, whether is is in form of donor or volunteer. For more information the the Make a Wish organization itself, head over to their website HERE.


Hello everyone,

I’d like to start by thanking Allyson for inviting us to tell our story tonight. Anthony's journey started 5 weeks earlier than it should have. We were fortunate to have an easy delivery and no subsequent complications. We started life as new parents hopeful and completely in love with our little man. It turns out, no book out there could have prepared us for what was about to happen.

The first 18 months of his life were hard, but we were told by our family doctor at the time, normal. A

lot of new babies don't sleep. A lot of babies scream 10 hours a day, it’s just colic. When Anthony failed to hit any of his growth and advancement markers like sitting, talking, walking, we were told, well, he's a boy. He'll catch up. (Side note, we got a new family doctor)

When he was 18 months old, Anthony died. What started out as a fun family visit at his gramma and papa's turned into every parent's worst nightmare. We had laid him down for his nap. He was crying, which was usual, when suddenly he stopped. Not his usual calm down to a whimper then fall asleep cry. Just stopped. We checked on him and saw he'd thrown up. After cleaning him up, we noticed he wasn’t himself. He didn’t seem to be seeing us in front of him. His eyes rolled back into his head and he stopped breathing. Now, my husband Kyle is the best driver I know. That afternoon, you’d have argued with me over that statement. I don’t think it took us more than three minutes to get from his parent's house to the Victoria hospital. I remember passing someone on the wrong side, going over a corner when traffic stopped. I remember my baby turning blue in my arms.

When we got to the hospital, the nurses grabbed Anthony from Kyle's arms. There is no describing the feeling of watching your child get whisked away and them not letting you in the room. Of hearing the words Pediatrics to the ER. Code blue, code blue. There is no room more terrible than that little room they put you in while you wait to find out if your son will survive

Thankfully, the staff at the hospital that day were amazing and we will forever be grateful to them for bringing Anthony back to us.

The next couple of years after that day were filled with diagnoses and information overloads. But it didn’t matter, because Anthony was alive and we were finally getting answers. MRIs, EEGs, and specialist galore later, Anthony was diagnosed with cerebral palsy with autistic tendencies and an uncontrolled seizure disorder. With his cerebral palsy, he has partial left side hemiplagia which means he is partially paralyzed on his left side. As for the autism, he hates new places, big crowds, loud noises… so events like these are pretty much his worst nightmare. But he’s a trooper and I’m so proud of him for being here. Uncontrolled seizure disorder pretty much explains itself. We can never stop them all. All we do is try to manage the worst of them.

There have been many trips to the ER and overnight hospital stays but thankfully, none

as serious as that first time. Now that we know what to watch for, what triggers the seizures, what affects his medication, and what we need to do when they happen, we’ve managed to catch them before things get as extreme as when he was 18 months. We learned he'd been having seizures since he was born, but they were the small ones we weren't able to see. Just like right now. With medication keeping away the worst of the seizures, Anthony's most current EEG shows he still has 6 to 10 seizures per minute.

Because of this, concentrating on things is hard. It has made speaking a challenge. If you have the pleasure of meeting Anthony, you’ll find a compassionate young man who wants to be friends with everyone, but is hesitant because of his speech impediment.

One thing he will tell you is that he loves the power rangers, paw patrol, his animals, his xbox, the raiders, the color red, anything to do with police officers and police dogs, and most of all, above all else, he loves fishing. Fishing is his peace. His happy place. While he is fishing, things are quiet. There isn’t a lot of talking. It's just him and the fish. And he is good at catching those big pike.

I was encouraged to contact Make a Wish by another mom of a boy with cerebral palsy and epilepsy I met online. I filled out the application and then didn’t think much about it.

To say I was shocked and excited when they contacted me to let me know Anthony had been approved would be a gross understatement on my part. We made plans to meet with Allyson. All the while, I was nervous. Anthony had decided on his wish, but all the wishes I heard of were for trips or to meet people. I was scared that what he wanted wasn’t something he would be able to get.

I mean, how in the world would the Make a Wish team be able to get him his own fishing boat? And not just any fishing boat. A red one.

When Allyson and Aissa sent me the pictures of Anthony's new boat, I cried. They had done it. Somehow, these amazing angels had found some equally amazing people at Rally Motors and they had come together to get Anthony a red fishing boat.

Since getting his boat, we've found that Anthony has been more willing to talk to people he doesn’t usually talk to. All we have to do is bring up his boat. Oh, and he will be quick to make sure you know that that is HIS boat. If he catches his dad doing any work to it, he is outside in a flash to supervise and make sure he approves what's being done to HIS boat. Want to hear him laugh? Ask him how the first time he and his dad took out the boat Anthony untied the line so when his dad went to pull the boat in, the rope came and the boat floated off. You guessed it. Dad had to swim after the boat and was all wet for the ride home… funny story for Anthony, not so funny for dad.

Anthony will never drive a car, own a house…. Won't have the usual ‘future' other kids his age will have. But what he does have, is his red fishing boat, and we will eternally be thankful to everyone who was involved in making this wish become a reality for him. It may seem like such a small thing, but to us, to Anthony, it is everything.

So thank you again, Allyson and everyone at Make a Wish and to all of you who came today. Without people to support and donate time, funds and resources, there is no way these wishes would be possible.

Thank you.

Sunday, 5 July 2020

Elizabeth Kirke’s Magic Vanished cover reveal!

Coming July 20th - Magic Vanished -- Just $0.99 and available on Kindle Unlimited 

 The next victim will be one of their own… They say it took one hundred magical beings to defeat the first Arcanist. Great care was taken to ensure the secret to his malevolent power died with him. Now the brutal reign of the Arcanist has become little more than a scary bedtime story. And yet, the descendants of his loyal followers are sworn to find a way to bestow his dark magic upon another. If they succeed, they’ll unleash a new terror upon an unsuspecting world. After defeating the dark wizard, Jen hoped the string of mysterious disappearances would stop. Yet when another person goes missing, she is forced to reopen the case. This time the stakes are higher than ever with the latest victim being one of her closest friends. Determined to unravel the mystery, Jen throws herself into a web of darkness few have ever escaped. 
 
Magic Vanished is Book Two in the Urban Fantasy series, Rise of the Arcanist, featuring witches, vampires, werewolves, and more. It is a New Adult spin-off of USA Today Bestselling author Elizabeth Kirke’s award-winning More than Magic series. If you like your paranormal mixed with a little mystery and true friendship, dive into your copy today. Rise of the Arcanist is a six book serial, with each installment releasing a month apart. You do *not have to read the original More than Magic trilogy to enjoy it.*

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B08B8SPZZP

Wednesday, 8 January 2020

BLACK HOLLOW: FINDING HER KINGS
(The Drakki Chronicles #2 & Road to Hell series #5)



BLURB

When an MMA fighter crosses paths with the head of a diamond empire as well as a demon from Hell, more than sparks will fly.

Frankie Bordeaux-Smith is content with her life out of the ring until a knock on her door thrusts her into the world of princesses and unicorns. According to the Romeros, she’s both, and now someone wants her dead.

Mated to each other, King and Hitchcock are settled in Black Hollow, running their coffee shop and diamond business. That is, until their quiet world is shattered by… a nun?

As assassins drift into the peaceful paranormal town, can the demon and dragon keep a unicorn alive while figuring out the latest twist of fate to their hearts?

One-click now to see if this modern day princess has found her kings!


Universal Link: https://books2read.com/u/47E6v8


Monday, 9 December 2019

Exhaustion

There are so many ways to feel tired.  Mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually... being tired is never a great feeling.  When you're tired in all these departments, you're not tired anymore. You're exhausted.

Today, I woke up after two hours of sleep completely drained.  My body hurts, my head hurts.  My heart hurts.  I am without a doubt, exhausted.  I know a lot of people follow along with Anthony's story and while I always try to post positive, happy, and funny things, every once in a while, I'll pop a negative tidbit in there.  I mean, let's face it.  My kid has not just one, but three health conditions.  Life isn't always going to be roses.

About a month ago, Anthony started to have dizzy spells.  Some minor.  Some major enough he would fall and sometimes throw up.  We did some blood work, but his medication levels seemed to be where they were supposed to be.  The only thing out of the ordinary was a low white blood count. Now, before you panic, one of his medications can cause this.  It can also cause dizziness. Because his med levels were normal, his neurologist sent us to our family doctor (neuro is an hour and a half away in a different city) to get checked out.

One physical later, and Anthony was given a clean bill of health, minus the dizzy spells.  Our family doctor decided that the best way to rule out the carbamazapine was to lower the dose.  If he was suddenly showing two side effects of that medications he'd never experienced before, then maybe it was the culprit.  Of course, that meant that with a lower med level in his system, we'd have to watch for seizures.

I'm not going to lie.  I was hopeful.  I thought, well, if the medication is making him feel like this, then maybe he doesn't need to be on that high a dose.  Maybe the rest of the meds he was on were enough to keep the worst seizures away.

A week after we lowered the dose, the dizzy spells went away.  I thought, "Awesome!".

A week after that, and we started to notice small changes.  He had more trouble sleeping.  He was quick to get upset. 

It's been one more week since that second week and there's no denying it.  He's having more seizures.  Not the ones where he loses conciousness and stops breathing, but the ones he has right before he has those bad ones. He's not sleeping because of them which leaves him exhausted and moody, and just not in a good place.  He has to stop what he's doing multiple times a day because of them.  There's nothing like your teenage boy yelling "mom" in a panicked voice as he runs to the nearest bed so he can lay down in case he falls.

It's been an exhausting month.  And yes.  I know I'm using that word a lot.  I'm too exhausted to think of a different one.

Last night, we gave him his higher dose of medication.

This morning, I woke up crying.  Because I'm tired.  Because I've only gotten a couple hours of sleep per night the past month.  Because now, Anthony is going to feel gross while his system gets used to the higher level of medication. Because it's going to take at least a week for the higher levels to help bring down the number of seizures.  Because, after all of this, was it even the carbamazapine that caused the dizziness?  Did I just put my son through three weeks of mental and physical hell for nothing?  I don't know.  I have no fucking clue.

In two weeks, we have an appointment in Saskatoon with his neurologist.  Maybe the dizzy spells will be back by then.  Maybe they're gone forever.  Until then, we'll just try to rest and stay positive.

Anyway.  That's my Anthony update for now.  And don't worry.  I'm sure something cute or funny will happen soon and I'll be sure to let you all in on it.

Have a good week and stay safe. <3

Tuesday, 6 August 2019

#teasertuesday Displaced


Just a little something for you on this Teaser Tuesday. :D 

“Kendall, please. Sit down.”
He barely glanced at Jasper before resuming his pacing.  “What’s taking so long?”
“Kendall, I need you to sit down so I can heal your face.”  Hayden blew an exasperated breath out of her nose. 
“I’m fine.”
“You are not fine!”  She walked into his path and he was forced to stop.   Before he could move, she’d pulled a green healing wave from the air and pressed it onto his face. 
He hissed as the cut over his eye repaired itself.
“Here.”  Brice handed him a shot of jeckden and a mug of sloan.
Kendall shot back the first and gulped down the second.  The alcohol did nothing to ease the heavy feeling in his chest.  He sat heavily, his face in his hands.
“I need you to try, Hayden.  You’ve done it twice now.  You can do it again.”
“Kendall, I can’t!  The first time was an accident and this last time I knew who I was moving and to where.  I can’t send you to Thistendal on purpose.  I have no point of reference.  What if I send you in the complete opposite direction?”
“I can’t just sit here!”  He resumed his pacing. 
Everyone looked up as the door opened to reveal Marilynn.  Her eyes found Kendall.  “Is the bluebird telling the truth?”
He nodded.  “I need to get to Thistendal. I need to bring them home.”
The high sorceress ran her hands over her face.  “I don’t have the power to send you that far.  No one does.”
“Hayden does!”  The words echoed in the cabin.  He took a long deep breath to calm himself.  “I’m sorry, Hayden.  I….”  He swallowed hard. 
She hugged him close.  “It’s alright.  We’ll figure it out.  I promise.”
“What if you, Marilynn, and Rainen got together?”  Brice took a drink of his sloan.
Marilynn shook her head.  “While we’d likely have enough magic, we have no idea what Thistendal is like.  For us to displace that far, we’d need an exact point of reference to focus on.”
“There has to be away.”  Kendall looked from one sorceress to the other.
“The Gysps?”  Knowing how torn his friend was, Jasper tried not to laugh at Hayden’s glare.  She’d never forgiven the sea faring folk for calling her cursed.
“Maybe.”  Marilynn chewed on her lip thoughtfully.  “Though they won’t be back on our shores for at least another three months.”
Kendall poured himself another shot of jeckden and made it disappear.  “That’s too long.”
“Wait!”  Hayden’s grin gave him hope.  If anyone was going to be able to figure something out, it was going to be Hayden.  “I know how you’ll get there!”  She stood on her tiptoes and kissed his cheek.  “Go home, clean up, and pack your bags. I have an idea but it will take me a day to see if it will work.”
He frowned, though her excitement was starting to rub off on him. “What are you thinking?”
She shook her head.  “Just come back tomorrow. I don’t want to get your hopes up in case it doesn’t work.”  She gave him another hug.  “Now, go.”


Sunday, 28 July 2019

Sneak Peek Chapter : Displaced

As some of you have heard, I've been working on Displaced for the last little while.  When I released it a couple of yours ago, I shouldn't have.  For lack of a better word, it was terrible.  Now, don't get me wrong, I love the story and the characters, but they (and you) deserved better than the half-assed thrown together "novel" I put out there.  Thankfully, I was smart enough to hit the unpublish button almost as quickly as I pushed the publish one, and only a handful of people managed to read it.

So.  For those of you who love Quelondain and Hayden's Sageden pack, I want to thank all of you for keeping the faith you seem to have in me.

I'm hoping to have ARCs of the newly finished Displaced out at the end of August/beginning of September with a release at the end of September/beginning of October.  Until then, I'll be sure to post teasers and snippets to keep you entertained.

Here's a little something for you on this beautiful Sunday night. 

content warning: this contains adult situations

Neeka shut her bedroom door as quietly as she could.  She’d managed to avoid her sister most of the day and had made sure to tend the bar as long as possible to make sure Hanna would be sleeping when she came to bed.
Her sister knew, she was sure of it.  The instant she’d walked back into the inn with her vegetables, her sister had known.  How, she wasn’t sure.  She’d sent Kendall to get water for the lunch soup, something they usually did together, but she’d had to put some distance between them.
She’d thought that being with him would cure her of the need she felt when it he was around.  She’d been wrong.  So wrong.  Had it not been for the fact that the vegetables had to be back in time for lunch, she would have spent the entire day exploring his body and all the different ways she was sure he could make her explode.
She lay on her bed and pulled the covers up.  Closing her eyes, she listened to her sister’s breathing.  Sleeping.  Taking a quick look to make sure the blanket that spread between them was in place, Neeka let herself think of the morning’s events. 
Bloody hell.  What had she been thinking?  She was intended.  She hadn’t been completely sure he would take her, though she had been fairly confident he’d felt the attraction.
She had hoped that having him would satisfy her curiosity, her need to have him touch her.  If anything, it had combusted the urges and set her on fire.
It had been all she could do not to drag him back to the forest to have a second go at him.  Thankfully, he seemed to have been affected the same way.
There had been no hesitation, no question as he’d led up into the hay loft and bent her over a bale of hay.  The feel of him sliding in and out combined with her anticipation of how she knew he was able to make her feel had her cumming in a few short minutes.  He’d held her from behind, his lips dropping soft kisses on the back of her neck.
She’d giggled at his apology.  There was no need to be sorry.  She’d wanted it just as much as him.
If pretending she wasn’t interested in him prior to this had been hard, it was now nearly impossible.  She’d caught more than one of Christopher’s men eyeing them.
Maybe it was her overactive imagination, but she was sure everyone knew. 
Her thoughts wandered back to the hay loft and her fingers traveled down to the heat that was rising between her legs.
The breeze had blown into the barn and she was sure he’d caught her scent.  His nostrils had flared, his light blue eyes locking on hers.  No words had been spoken.  One moment they were staring at each other, the next, they were in the loft.  His fingers had made quick work of the laces on both of their pants.  He’d pushed into her with a sigh that had her moaning.  He was perfect.  It was almost as though they’d been doing this every day for years. 
She thought of how his thighs had felt on the backs of hers, how his hands had gripped her hips and pulled her back to penetrate her deeper still.
Her fingers pushed on her sweet spot and she clenched her teeth, desperate to stay quiet as she exploded in her memory and in her room.
She lay like a puddle of jelly in her bed, her breathing settling back to normal.  By the moons, what was happening to her? She’d lost her mind, to be sure.  She’d lost her bloody mind.

Saturday, 13 July 2019

DICK (The Private Dick series Book 1)blog tour


Bourbon, beads, and blood.

KING
Phuck is the king of New Orleans. A demon who offers immortality for loyalty and respect. As president of the Voodoo Dawgs MC, he’s become as iconic to Nawlins’ citizens as the French Quarter. With Voodoo Mama and his brothers at his side, he’s untouchable, his power limitless. But when one of his demon brothers is discovered murdered, his life is about to be shaken up in ways he could’ve never anticipated.

SHERIFF
Enzo is a sheriff, a shifter with a badge, who’s lost his power and the respect of the citizens of New Orleans. Betrayed by those he trusted, he’s fallen into disgrace, unable to remain sober long enough to pull himself together. When one of Phuck’s men is found dead, Enzo calls in the big guns to help solve the murder.

DICK
Panther shifter Detective Natalia Cortes arrives to investigate a demonic killing in NOLA. It’s not just any homicide, but the murder of a demon who happens to be part of the Voodoo Dawgs MC. The self-appointed King of New Orleans doesn’t want her there, but she feels his heated gaze. The sheriff needs her help to solve the case, but the more time he spends with her, the more he wants to claim her as his mate.

Welcome to the Dark Days and Voodoo Nights of New Orleans!


When I found out that Gracen Miller was releasing a new book, I knew I had to get my hands on it.  She's become one of my favorite go to authors.  She never disappoints. 
Dick is a great story filled with action, romance, and fantastic sex scenes.  The characters a relatable and emotional.
Once I started reading, I couldn't put the book down.
Another five star story from an amazing author and her partner in crime. I'll definitely be looking into Julie Morgan and reading more of her stories.