To celebrate the birthday of one of my most beloved authors, we have created this hop! Today, March 16, Alice Hoffman turns (a lady never tells!)  So please follow the hop, read how her stories have inspired many.  Fall in love with her beautiful tales as we have.  More than anything, join me in wishing Alice a heartfelt Happy Birthday!

“When I walk, I walk with you. Where I go, you're with me always.”
~Alice Hoffman~~The Story Sisters

“Is she alive?” Her words echoed throughout the car. Driving past the scene of the accident, my sister already on the way to the hospital, my Mother insisted we stop to ask the police officer.  He leaned in and said yes.  She let out a puff of air, relieved. But I knew there were a thousand ways to be alive and dead at the same time, people did it every day. 

I saw my world as Elv did.  Elv the eldest of the three girls in Alice Hoffman’s novel The Story Sisters.  She is the main character of the work.  I loved The Story Sisters from the moment I picked it up, and as it is with such a wonderful story, I never did put it back down.

 “It’s pancreatic cancer,” the doctor said grimly.  I took in a sharp breath before asking the obvious question.  Will it be fatal?  I could tell by the doctor’s expression that he was as ignorant to a person’s fate as I was.  It wasn’t his fault, I knew that one survivor stood for every dozen that didn’t.  I knew that no amount of love or worry was going to change how the story would end.  I locked my emotions away. Crying was a worthless weapon.

Elv knew loss from an early age.  Loss of trust, loss of safety, loss of love, she understood that feelings were a weakness.  She locked her heart away and tried desperately to stop caring.  She never could quite manage it though and instead of allowing others to hurt her, she hurt herself first.  What was pain added to more pain, it was nothing at all.

“Had you loved him?” I asked myself that sunny day I saw their wedding invitation.  I think I did, in a very peculiar way.  I loved his smile, his laughter, the fact he could somehow steal anything from anywhere.  I’d loved the way he hugged me, as if he hadn’t seen me in decades and he always hung on longer than most huggers did.  I knew I had loved him, but I also knew why.  He changed who I was when I was with him.  I became the best version of myself.  Loving him was like loving me too.  I suddenly hoped that the girl on the invitation hugged him longer than anyone else did and that when he was with her he felt extraordinary.  I missed him. I missed myself.

Elv fell in love, she found her Prince.  Only it’s not always that clear.  Her Prince was flawed because she had fallen in love with a human.  Elv had taken on the weakness of love, but was unprepared for how heavy love could be.  When it came to the day that love was lost, I, as well as Elv, understood that love could be your greatest strength, even in sadness.  We understood that true love was meant to be effortless. 

“I think she’s a hopeless case,” he said.  I had wondered the same thing about her myself.  Up close, it certainly seemed that way.  Even she told us to forget about her.  I was angry and hurt but I’d known her all her life.  I’d seen her first steps, I had known how to rock her to sleep, I’d been watching her even when she thought I was paying no attention at all.  I knew that people didn’t change completely.  She was still inside, beneath the rage, the pain and the scars.  Like a seed beneath the earth, she was there, and one day she would bloom.  On that day, I would feel our unbreakable connection turn her walls to ash.  I knew she was there; I just needed to wait for her.

Elv’s story is about waiting.  It’s about waiting for someone to save you, and the harsh lesson that one must ultimately save themselves.  Her story is about blood.  That you can spill it with your tongue, that it binds us all the same.  Elv’s is a story of coping.  Of knowing things aren’t going to work out the way you’d planned.  That the right person’s arms can make all the difference in the world.  The importance of feeling the pain when you’re ready. Her story is a fairytale.  The good and evil can look eerily similar, patience is essential; love is what makes you fight for your kingdom.  Elv’s story is mine, and perhaps it is yours as well. 

I don’t think I could ever thank Alice Hoffman enough for giving me Elv’s story. 

It gives me hope for my own.

All My Love,

See how Alice Hoffman has touched others.  Follow the hop.
Click to set custom HTML
I was nominated for the Liebster award this week! I would like to thank Noree Cosper for choosing me.  Here is how we play…

Liebster Award Rules:

1. Thank the blogger who presented you with the Liebster Award, and link back to his or her blog.

2. Answer the 11 questions from the nominator; list 11 random facts about yourself, and create 11 questions for your nominees.

3. Present the Liebster Award to 11 bloggers, who have blogs with 200 followers or less, whom you feel deserve to be noticed.  Leave a comment on the blogs letting the owners know they have been chosen. (No tag backs.)

4. Upload the Liebster Award image to your blog.

So, let’s start with the 11 questions I get to answer:

1.      What hobbies do you have?

I love to bake and cook.  I’m always mixing new flavors and making up new recipes. This week’s winner was a Sugar Cookie Cheesecake.  It will be awesome for the holidays.

2.      Do you have any pets? Do you want any pets? What kind?

I reside with a dog named Bela, (no that isn’t a twilight reference!) 2 Cats, Harley and Sammy, and a dwarf hamster named Mina. I personally wouldn’t mind more cats, but that is because I’m well on my way to crazy cat lady status.

3.      What song is "your song?" Why?

That is a difficult question!  My mind instantly went back to when I was in 6th grade and heard Stevie Nick’s Rhiannon on vinyl.  Still love that song!

4.      What do you think makes a good story?

Obviously, a likeable main character makes a good story.  However, I’m inclined to say that a great story always includes one hideously cruel villain that for some reason you’re secretly rooting for.

5.      As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?

As is evidenced by my life, I didn’t think about it much.  I was obsessed with sunken ships and the ocean for a while as a child.  So a pirate…I guess I wanted to be a pirate.

6.      What is you favorite type of monster?

The kind that looks just like everyone else, that for all your trying you’d never see coming. 

7.      What would be the perfect gift for you?

Books.  You can never go wrong with books especially if they have any religious or occult subject matter.

8.      What time of day is your favorite?

Late at night when everyone is asleep and it is quiet enough to think.  It is also my least favorite time of day.

9.      What's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen?

I can’t think of a specific answer, such as trees or a sunset.  I think moments are beautiful, when we take care of one another just because we can.

10.  What habit that others have annoys you most?

Being late.  I am always on time if not a tiny bit early.  Usually I’m cool on whatever time someone chooses to do something, but stick to the time once you set it!

11.  If you became a vampire, what would you do?

We could pretend all day, but I’m going to go full on truth.  I’d probably kill some people and make it look like an accident.  Were I a genre of vampire that can heal others, I’d do a lot of that as well.  I’d be pretty complicated.

11 Random Facts!

1.      I hate ice cream but love milkshakes.

2.      When I was little I collected Dalmatian statues

3.      I don’t really like dogs…I told you I was complicated

4.      I think cats are the most intelligent animal there is. Because they make you earn their trust.

5.      When I was little, I begged my mom for a freestanding full-length mirror so I could go to Wonderland…never got the mirror so I can’t report on that.

6.       I collect Living Dead Dolls

7.      I genuinely believe in fairies and I think they take and move my things!

8.      I’m still not sure what I want to be when I grow up, I’m not fit enough to be Buffy, but I wouldn’t mind hunting with the Winchesters. 

9.      I’m freakishly good at reading people.  Nobody really likes that though.

10.  I hate dance crazes!

11.  I love tattoos and I’m dying to get more despite already having 6

11 Questions for my Victims!

1.      Have you published?  If so, what?  If not, do you plan to?

2.      What was your favorite children’s story?

3.      If you could only take three things to a deserted island, what would they be?

4.      Who is your hero?

5.      If you had the money to go anywhere, where would you go?

6.      What is your favorite genre to read?

7.      Do you think that MAYBE dinosaur bones are really Dragon bones? (I do)

8.      If you could spend the day with any person, dead or alive who would it be?

9.      Who in your family are you most like?

10.  Do you believe in aliens? Why or why not?

11.  Have you ever seen a ghost?