Wednesday, June 6, 2018

7 Tips to Make Your Summer a Success, IWSG, + Win a Beach Book


Are you ready? I'm so ready.

It's the season for beach reads, vacation, and kicking it with a capital "K". To start us off right, here are a few things to keep in mind:

1. Plan your road trips wisely.

2. It's okay if plans go amiss, as long as you make your destination in the end.

3. Enjoy each moment to the fullest.

4. Take things slow.

5. Don't get overwhelmed.

6. And HAVE FUN!

7. But remember, you can't take it home with you, so make good memories.


And last of all, the IWSG question for the month. I know some of you will spend the months dreading the lack of writing you get done, but keep in mind that life goes fast. Enjoy each moment.

The question: What's harder for you to come up with, book titles or character names?

Titles, though I usually don't struggle with either. Titles can get sorted out by a publisher...or critique group.

Huge thanks for hosting
Alex Cavanaugh
Beverly Stowe McClure,
Tyrean Martinson, and Ellen @ The Cynical Sailor!

Last month Judy Corry shared MEET ME THERE along with two truths and one lie. Anyone who guessed was entered to win a signed print copy.

The game:

1. I broke my toe doing a cartwheel into my friend's back.
2. I lived in 4 different houses on the same street.
3. I speak fluent Italian.

The lie: #3. From Judy: I speak a little German. (My dad taught it.) But my husband is the one who is fluent in Italian and lived there for two years before we were married. We wrote emails back and forth during that time, so Italian has a special place in my heart. This is why I made the main character in my book DON'T FORGET ME half-Italian.)

And the winner is:

...DRUM ROLL...

Congrats, Christine!

Today is all about summer, eh? And today I've got an awesome summer read for you (clean romance for the pool side). Check it out:


Ethan Walters has no time for distractions like romance. Not if he's going to have the brilliant medical career he's always dreamed of. But when he's given a trip to a theme park resort as a college graduation present, he can't exactly say no. Even if Samantha--the one girl with the power to dismantle his goals--is tagging along.

Samantha Diederik has managed to avoid her high society mother’s manipulations since the woman moved to Europe. Now she’s back and pressuring Sam to move to New York with her. With that battle on the horizon, Sam proceeds with a vacation with her brother and his roommate. She’s crushed on Ethan for years. They've only met online, but their hours-long conversations are the highlight of her week. Now she has a chance to find out if the cyber magic she's felt with him will translate to real life.

And wow, does it ever--with sparks flying! Now all she has to do is find a way to fight off her mother's machinations while convincing Ethan she won’t destroy his dreams.

Buy your copy for 99 cents now on Amazon.

Ready to meet Donna K. Weaver?




Award-winning author, wife, mother, grandmother, Harry Potter geek, Army veteran, karate black belt, and online gamer.

She loves Muenster cheese, but usually only get it when she attends those luncheons with sandwich trays. (Poor thing! She just needs to come to my house!)

Donna gave me two truths and one lie to test your "lie detector" skills. If you guess the lie, right or wrong, you will be entered to win the winner's choice of an AUDIOBOOK or EBOOK of SWING VOTE. (Open internationally.) DON'T HAVE A BLOGGER ACCOUNT WITH AN EMAIL ON THE PROFILE? No problem. LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN THE COMMENTS OR EMAIL crystal@crystal-collier.com to enter.

You have until Tuesday, July 3rd at 2 p.m. EDT to guess. Be sure to come back for the answer on July 4th, 8 a.m. EDT.
TRUTH OR LIE

1. I was interviewed on TV just before the release of the last Harry Potter Book, Deathly Hallows.
2. I started school in Greece.
3. I flunked the second grade.

So sleuths, which is the lie? What are you most looking forward to about summer? Have any great tips for making summer rock? Do you like clean romance stories?

96 comments:

  1. Probably a good thing that dog couldn't get the pool inside.
    I'm going to say she didn't flunk the second grade.

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  2. It's already been hot in my neck of the woods! Nowhere to go swimming around here, though :(

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  3. Haha great holiday advice! I have a trusty name generator that I use for character names, but titles are an agony!

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  4. Enjoy each moment and have fun? Sounds good to me - I'll try! :)

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  5. Summer looks like it's going to be hot, hot, hot here in the Texas Hill Country. Think I'll be staying indoors... :)

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  6. OMGosh! I thought the first image was funny, but then I kept scrolling. These are a riot! Thanks for the laugh, this early morning.

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  7. Wow! Thank you so much! *does happy dance* Very good advice on enjoying the summer. We've already had a lake day and lots of backyard time. The countdown is on to family camp! I can't wait. :)

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  8. I'd take a water sport right now.

    I'll say #2.

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  9. Thanks for the shout out, Crystal. Those gifs were hilarious!

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  10. Summery pictures are a riot! ^_^
    I had a lot of great vacations as a kid. There aren't just too many pictures, but I have a handful of Polaroids and a lot of good memories. :)

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  11. Love those gifs. We just got back from our vacation. It was exhausting because we spent the days making sand castles, jumping the waves, swimming in a pool, and riding bikes, but also so much fun.

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  12. Your "things to keep in mind" pics and commentary are a hoot, you evil woman. Why evil? You enticed me to buy yet another book! I'm addicted to reading, and you people keep enticing me to buy more and more books... (and I love it! Thanks.)

    I'll take a wild stab, and say the fib is #2 this time.

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  13. You always find the best gifs. I hope you have a fabulous summer!

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  14. Those gifs will make me smile all day! I tend to vacation in the fall, as I enjoy cooler weather. But it's good to remember to enjoy the journey, wherever we are.

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  15. Yay for summer fun and craziness! :D

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  16. I always like a little romance in my books even if it's only first, awkward crushes in middle school. What a great premise for Donna's new book! Lie is #3.

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  17. I imagine your summer will be filled with fun. And kids :) I usually don't have too much trouble either, but one time I gave a character the wrong name and everything was a struggle with her until I changed her name. Then she developed like clockwork. Who knew, LOL :)

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  18. Hi Crystal ... amazing clips - just hope mine isn't too much like that! Good luck to Donna as her heroine navigates her mother and Ethan ... interesting twists are to the fore. #3 is the lie ... cheers to you and the family - Hilary

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  19. Hooray for Donna!
    What beach what pool? I'm a translator, we work during summer more than any other time of the year.

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  20. What great clips, put a smile on my face! Wishing you and your family a cheese filled summer of fun and happy memories.

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  21. I have to admit that this summer has been a bust for writing so far. Graduation, summer projects, etc. have all conspired to bring the writing to a standstill. I'm in danger of not submitting anything to my crit group for a second month in a row. The horror!

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  22. Loved the gifs. I am going to say lie is #2.

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  23. After seeing your list of clips, I kissed my dog. He has never tried to bring in the wading pool and I'm counting my blessing. ;-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  24. I'm ready!! Yesterday we made it out to the lake for the first time. We did a great job with the sunscreen. Except for the legs. I didn't think about being in the kayak for so long and my knees and shins got burnt. Good thing we had plenty of aloe at home.

    Congrats to Donna! I've read Kings Crossed Lovers and thoroghly enjoyed it. I'll vote that the lie is she started school in Greece.

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  25. Love the pics and gifs LOL. I can see myself in that poor kid on the slide!

    Happy summer to you and your family!

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  26. I love the one of the dog trying to bring the pool inside, so cute! It's hard for me to come up with titles, which is why so many of my drafts don't have them yet.

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  27. Getting into the summer mood myself:) The kids and I are in the garden just about every day:)

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  28. I'm so happy that it's time for the warm temps and time for me to hit up the beach. Yaass!! Bring it on summer, I'm ready for you. These memes are the best. Thank you for sharing them with us and I hope you enjoy your warmer months too.

    Elsie

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  29. What a clever post. Do you go hunting for clips to fit your text or make up something to with a clip. Either way, I loved, loved, loved it! So true to slow down and enjoy the summer days.
    JQ Rose

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  30. Thanks for the great summer travel tips! Great ideas!
    Happy Summer & Reading!

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  31. Love all the inspirational summer ... funnies :) I am going with Greece as the lie :)

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  32. Haha, I love your vacay pics! So fun. Have a great week, Crystal!

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  33. I love your summer tips clips. For the truth or lie, I'm guessing number 3. If she started school in Greece, it might have been a language the. (My husband came to the States when he was five after living most of his life in post WWII refugee camps. He could speak or understand a dozen languages from playing with the other kids in the camps, but English wasn't one of them. He flunked first grade.

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  34. Great tips and pics to match! :) Have a good summer! and I do like a clean romance, who doesn't?

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  35. Yikes on that slide at the water works. Ouch.

    Have a fabulous day and weekend. ♥

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  36. I'm so looking forward to summer!!! And a little free time! Love all your advice and pics, thanks for the giggles.

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  37. Summer is in full swing here. We have our first trip planned next week. The kids are excited to be heading to the beach. And then I'll be going to Denver for my first ever trip on my own since being married and having kids. Attending the RWA conference. Looking forward to that.

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  38. The dog on the jet ski and the squirrel on the ski was so fun!

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  39. Great tips for the summer, and great clips to go along with them. Hope you have a summer as fun as these clips. I think character names come easier than titles, though titles are not a lot of trouble. I love naming characters. It's one of my favorite aspects of storytelling.

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    1. Oops, I pressed "publish" a second time, so that's why I deleted the comment below. It was the same comment.

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  40. I always like to come here because you make me laugh, Crustal. You didn't fail me today, either. I didn't know Donna had a new book out. Huge congratulations to her.

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  41. I as well as Lee above had a good laugh, I just adored the summer pics for the beach and pool. Aslso congrats to Donna on writing what appears to be an excellent book which I know will be a success.

    Yvonne

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  42. This summer I’m looking forward to just spending lots of time outside, gardening, and spending quality time with my boyfriend. Which will be a challenge with the World Cup, but I’ll try my best. :)

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  43. Bring on summer!!! But not too hot - I'm a bit of a wimp with the heat! :)
    Enjoy!

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  44. Thanks so much for stopping by stopping by my blog. My only tip consistent summer fun tip is to try something new. Every summer I try at least one thing I've never tried before.
    I think number 3 is the lie.

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  45. Some of those gifs made me laugh and a few made me cringe because it looks like it hurt!

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  46. As a teacher, I love summer! Number three is the lie, right?

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  47. I hope I never drive into a pool.

    Love,
    Janie

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  48. You gave me a good chuckle. :)
    Have some cheese as a thank you.

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  49. Love the summer fun gifs. I love my 15 month old granddaughter, but I'm looking forward to not watching her every day for eight hours. Grandma is tired. I hope I get as much writing done as I planned.

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  50. I'm going to say 3 is the lie. I'm hoping to have a weekly trek somewhere fun with the kids this summer. First week down!

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  51. Those are the best tips! I love the visual aids.

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  52. Such fun summer tips. Loved the cheese one it the end. Who wouldn't right?

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  53. Cool tips on summer ;). Am off to load Donna's book into my kindle!

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  54. Great tips for summer, Crystal! We saw a real-life example of #1 a few years back, where a car was backing a boat trailer down the slipway to pick up a boat. The driver presumably didn't engage the brake properly because a few minutes later the car was under 10 feet of seawater!

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  55. Such a fun post. The gifs are amazing. I especially love not being able to take it home with you.
    My guess for the lie is flunking second grade.

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  56. Yep my thoughts exactly. I can't get enough of water skiing squirrel.

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  57. What a fun game! I would have guessed living on the same street in four different houses. I was brought up in the military, so it isn't that unfathomable, though. :) Happy IWSG day! http://www.raimeygallant.com

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  58. I had to smile at the summer tips! I am looking forward to warm weather and relaxing with a good book on the beach.

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  59. What fun pictures. I needed a good laugh today. Thank you.
    Congratulations to Donna on her new book. Sounds interesting.
    I say number 3 is the lie.
    Have a great summer. Drive carefully.

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  60. Ah yes, the time suck of summer. Sounds like a great book. I'll guess the lie is #1.

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  61. Yep this is the second week my kids have been off of school. It does get busy considering my husband and I both work full time. We make due though! I hope my boys have fun. I have them in some camps. I'm just not looking forward to next year. My oldest will outgrow the camps around here. Possibly there will be new experiences though. We shall see.

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  62. I'll guess #3 is the lie. Have a great summer holiday!

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  63. Thanks for the laughs, Crystal! "Life goes fast." It surely does! Thanks for reminding us all. I'm going to guess that Donna didn't flunk second grade. Enjoy summer!

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  64. Great tips – I'll keep them in mind on our travels.

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  65. I'm trying to imagine your kitchen and how you store all of your cheese. Perhaps you have a fridge dedicated just to cheese?

    Congrats to Donna on her release. I'm going to go with #3

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  66. Don't come to Mexico if you love strong flavored cheese. The local folks enjoy white mild cheeses and it took ages to discern the differences among the half-dozen available varieties. I have learned to enjoy panela cheese (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Queso_panela). It is low in fat, keeps well in the refrigerator, and weeps when stored.

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  67. Great summer gifs. I especially like #2, with the little girl falling into the pool. So funny! #4 is wonderful as well - whoever heard of a water-skiing squirrel!

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  68. Those gifs are too funny! I love the dog trying to bring the pool inside.

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  69. Love this Crystal. It's summer all year round in Oz and we manage to write all year round while enjoying pools, beaches, air-con. Hmm. My favorite cheese is in cheesecake, LOL.

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  70. Each and every animated GIF accompanied by words made me smile. I’m not really a summer person, I like to spend indoors mostly, but I’ll make a plan for my Grands during their summer break starting in the latter half of July. Before that there’s one month rainy season which I like for the relatively cool weather. I’ll recharge myself and be ready to deal with kids with bundle of energy. Have a terrific summer.

    Yoko

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  71. Yes! Have a memorable time while you are away! Because creating memories is important.

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  72. I love the gifs!
    Hope you're enjoying your summer, Crystal!

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  73. Thanks for the fun post. I could see my dog trying that pool thing (Grrrr...he's been getting on my nerves with such stupidity lately)
    And enjoy your summer moments too!

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  74. Exactly. Enjoy every moment.

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  75. I did enjoy the gifs in your post, they made me smile.
    It is so important to create memories.
    The days, and time, fly by so fast, we need to capture and use each one wisely.

    Have a great weekend, and a great summer too.

    All the best Jan

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  76. £ has to be a lie - and I can't wait for a publisher to give me a title ;-)

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  77. Such a cute, happy post! Thank you!! Big Hugs!

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  78. Haha, that's a silly puppy! I'm glad summer is here and I can go camping a lot :)

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  79. Thanks for a lovely photo filled post!

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  80. I think coming up with names is harder because I've already used all my favorites!

    As for the lie...I'l take a stab at No. 1

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  81. Hope you have a fun summer! Congrats to Donna. I'll say #3 for the lie.

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  82. I'm ready in spirit but not in body. Someone forgot to put the cake away!

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  83. Fun post! Hope you have a great summer!

    (I'd guess that failing 2nd grade is the lie. How do you do that?)

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  84. I love the pictures and video clips you have in your posts, Crystal. Congratulations to Christine Rains for winning last month’s truth or lie. Now, let me see. I'll say the lie is # 3. Here's hoping! All best to you, my dear. Enjoy your summer!

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  85. Your post made me laugh. Your tips are great. That dog trying to bring the pool inside? Yeah, that's me. And I was not expecting the kid going down the slide to slam into everything on the way down; I expected a legit happy gif. Oops. I definitely agree that expecting the unexpected is pretty important. I haven't been on a trip yet when something unexpected hasn't happened! Even more so when kids are involved!

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  86. I have to admit that as much as I loved Lake Michigan when I lived in Chicago, I otherwise stay away from the water during the summer, especially pools. They make me feel like I'm taking a bath with a bunch of strangers.

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  87. I thought about you when we were on holiday. We went to a cheese factory. :) It was really interesting.

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  88. Yeah! Your tips are great and the memes are funny!

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  89. love the summer fun funnies! and yay for Donna!
    i guess the Greece item is the lie (i’ve actually been there!)
    happy summer, Crystal!

    Tara Tyler Talks

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  90. Hope you're having a great summer, Crystal! Those gifs are hilarious. And so true about learning to enjoy each moment--that's something I need to be more mindful of!

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  91. Nothing beats a waterskiing squirrel :-)

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  92. The minivan in the pool is a very bad thing! I don't think we're doing anything too exciting this summer.

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Hit me with your cheese!