Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Thank you, Thank you!

          Today I’m feeling purely grateful.  Yes, I know this is a humor blog, but it’s also a blog for readers of my books, to give them a peek into my often hilarious life. So I have to press pause on the humor button this week, just to express my gratitude for the frequent sources of that very humor—my husband and kids.  We have so many laughs together, and tons of love.

Here are three photos from their Christmas visit this week.  Yes, we welcomed Brandon’s Great Dane, Odin, into the house as well.  Here are Richie, Brandon, Cassidy and his wife, our adored daughter-in-law Tiffany, and Nicole. These pictures show us at church on Christmas Day, at Top Golf, 

and at Beat the Room here in Rocklin.

I love you guys, and I miss you already!  
Start the New Year off right, and order my books for those chilly winter days when you just want to stay in with a cup of hot chocolate, a blanket, and a great story!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

House of Mirth

          I think we can agree that Christmas traditions vary from family to family.  But in our house, they vary a tad more off the beaten track.  In the Hilton house comedy seems to reign supreme, and from the required Christmas Rat window painting (which was supposed to be a cute little mouse, sleeping in a wreath), 
to one son always arranging the letters, “NOEL” to spell “LEON,” we have a way of twisting traditions.
          Possibly our worst tradition is the Annual Collapsing Gingerbread House.  Begun by accident, this so entertained our boys when they were younger, that it has become a required part of our holiday festivities.  Luckily, this is easy to duplicate year after year.  All it takes is a lack of patience, precision, know-how, and talent. 
          So, while the annual Rocklin Gingerbread House Contest fills our Event Center with beauties like these:

          the Hiltons continue to produce results like this one:
          But we have a grand time, nobody swears in frustration, and we feel no guilt whatsoever in gobbling up the results.  So I guess it’s a winning house after all.

          You need something to do after all the Christmas hoopla dies down.  I recommend a cup of hot chocolate and a good book-- perhaps one of mine?  Order ‘em here.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Cane and Unable

Do not try this at home.  Do not try this anywhere.  Not with a fox, not in a box.  Especially not in a box.
Folks, you know I’m famous—okay, within my own family—for taking on RIDICULOUS craft projects that always bomb out.  Somehow my brain is magnetically drawn to the impossible and you’ve read about many of my disasters right here in this blog.
So for Christmas this year, I got the idea to make homemade candy canes. How tough can it be when you see boxes and boxes of them at the store, for mere pennies?
All I can assume is that there is one amazing factory, undoubtedly in China, where they have figured out how to do this quickly and cheaply.  You cannot duplicate this in your kitchen.
You decide to look up some recipes online.  Your eye scans the ingredients. You see things like “Heat-retardant gloves,” 
and “a bench scraper,” along with corn syrup, sugar, and other sticky items. You also notice you have to make two separate colors that you will then wrap around each other.
Then you check the instructions and you see phrases like, “Working quickly…” and “pulling hard candy can be tricky,” and “don’t let children work with scalding liquids.”
You read a caution about glass candy thermometers being breakable. When it talks about pulling, doubling, and twisting the hot candy it says, “Enjoy the upper body workout.”
And here is where, in an unprecedented holiday miracle, Joni stops reading, closes the link, and decides candy cane making is not for her.  You see?  She can be taught.
And if you want a truly memorable Christmas gift—one that won’t blister your hands, strain your muscles, or leave a sticky film on your kitchen counters that you have to chisel off—just check out my 24 books on my website.  So much easier, right?

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

15 Ways You Know the Lines are Too Long

          You did it again. You forgot to buy everything by November, and now it’s December and you’re stuck in holiday shopping lines.  I love Christmas, but here’s how you know you’re in a line that’s just too long:
1-       Your chewing gum has gotten old.  Twice.
2-      You’ve exchanged email addresses with the people next to you.
3-      People’s relatives are standing in for them, in shifts.
4-      A catering truck pulls up to service your group.
5-      You’ve taken off your coat to allow for the change in weather.
6-      Your roots need a re-touch.
7-      People are sitting in lawn chairs, using their lap tops.
8-      One lady is stamping her Christmas cards.
9-      A man calls home to tell his kids goodnight.
10-    Your cell phone has become obsolete twice since you got in line.
11-     You consider calling neighbors to feed the dog.
12-    You’ve heard the same Muzak Christmas Carols eight times.
13-     You’d be willing to pay double, if they’d just open another register.
14 -    The store has put a Porta-Potty nearby.
15-     They’re throwing a baby shower for a woman who wasn’t even pregnant when you first got in line.

But you can save all this aggravation by purchasing my books online!  With 24 to choose from, there’s something for everyone, trust me.