Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve

It has been several days since I've blogged and I will come back and write lengthier posts about each of my last few visits, but right now I want to copy a post I also just wrote on
I want to thank EVERY host family I've met on this tour. I have SO ENJOYED spending every minute with you, your families and your pets even if it was only for a short time. You were all wonderful to me and there was something new and exciting at every turn. Here are just a few of my memories and comments about my visits. The rest will come to the families in personal notes.

Mitchell Family of NH: You are always so nice to me and I love coming to your house. Brian, you are a man of few words but a good and kind and supportive friend. Thank you for the delicious American Chop Suey and brownies. I wish I hadn't brought the snow with me but at least the power didn't go out this time! Good luck Teagan on your college adventures in the coming year and good luck with your book Joyce. Let's do it again next year and pray for a sunny day with temps in the 70's and equipment that works right and doesn't get lost!!

Paul Toole of Wells, UK: Paul, I can't say enough about the days I spent with you and Chris. Everything was perfect and I had such a good time and so many laughs I could never count them all. Thank you for the beautiful accommodations with the giant bathtub that was the place for my naps, for the spectacular job you did with your lighting ceremony, for your wonderful display (especially the penguins!) and the tours of historic places and fairy shops. I really feel like I have two new British brothers and look forward to you visiting our home soon.

Chuck Smith: You are always a true gentleman and I thank you for the opportunity to perform in Franklin and for the delicious lunch and companionable time spent with you and your beautiful wife. Oh, and for the place to shower and get ready after my harrowing trip back from the UK and the overnight ride to TN. You have done so much for me I could never ever thank you enough. I hope everyone here appreciates what you've done by making this website available to help those who sincerely want to make memories that will last a life time.

The Dennis Family of TX: WHAT A DAY! It was beautiful and warm, you guys were awesome hosts (barbecued sausage, yum yum) and I could have sat there and talked with you guys forever. The few minutes I spent relaxing in your home library surrounded by beautiful decorations and children's literature will always be remembered. Thank you also for arranging the visit from the Mayor of Elgin and for the engraved brick, which will have a special place in my home. What a great way to remember a great day that went by way way too fast, just like the train that barreled through during my concert!

The Brown Family of TX: The visit began with a concert at a nursing home which was very special to me, and continued with my first awestruck view of Linda's house with SANTA AND THE REINDEER on the roof!!! Linda, your display had every element of the song and the video you made was wonderful. Your husband's cooking was deeee-lish and your family, including your two terrific sisters- my roadie and merch person, couldn't have been kinder or more fun. You, my dear, have a heart of gold and a wonderful spirit and I hope this is only the beginning of a lifelong friendship.

The Holdman Family of Utah: What can I say? Richard, you not only live up to your reputation as THE world-class decorator, but you gave me the gift of that video which has made this whole tour so much more exciting. My time with your family was really short due to the production of the video but they were just beautiful and so nice to me, a perfect stranger in their home. You extended an opportunity to me and went out of your way to do this fabulous thing for my career, and we had never met nor corresponded prior to that. You just came out of the blue like an angel and since then have become a dear and trusted friend. THANK YOU for EVERYTHING!!!

The Hurrle Family of Idaho: Oh Terry... you, my friend, are unforgettable. From start to finish you did everything possible to make me feel at home. Didn't we have a nice time at our pizza dinner? You talked my ears off but I so enjoyed hearing your stories...your friendliness and your enthusiasm and the joy and pride you have in your display...especially your dancing Elvis. You remain the only person I have ever met who talks more than me!! Your family was so nice and easy to talk with and even your doggies made me feel at home. I wish you all the best and tons of fun with your bowling teams and may you always bowl a perfect strike!

The Zembruski's of Washington: If there was anyone on this tour who was a cool dude it was YOU, Z-Man. What a class act! I was amazed by your home and enchanted by your bright and beautiful and courageous wife. Oh yes, and your display knocked me out too, especially poor baby Jesus out there lying on the grass. You gave me the biggest surprise of the tour by bringing THE Bob Rivers up to sing with me!! The accommodations were five-star, the much needed gift of a massage (Mark didn't give me the massage, he arranged for me to have one at the spa! HA HA!) and the thoughtfulness and generosity you showed in arranging my stays for the two nights of travel without shows were above and beyond the call. From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU.

The Bicknase Family of MN: My biggest regret of the tour is that I didn't get to go to your house because of the storm. I would have found a way in if there was one, but the roads were all closed. Even though I didn't do the concert, you still provided me with a place to stay in South Dakota that was comfortable and warm and out of the chilly prairie wind. SOMEDAY I will get to your house and do that concert. Maybe a Christmas in July? LOL...but seriously I will be there one of these days, I promise, and thank you for helping me out that night.

The Jeffries Family of MO: It was so flipping cold that night but you found a solution and gave me the most unique staging arrangement of the tour, inside your garage and singing through a window. It was very very considerate! And I loved the red cloths you set up around me to give the appearance that I was singing in a festive red room. The pictures look great! All along in the planning of this tour I received the most emails and encouraging phone calls from you, Larry, and they really helped me keep up the energy and enthusiasm it took to get this project off the ground and keep it going. That meant to world to me. Please give your beautiful wife Kellie and your darling little girl Elizabeth a big hug for me!

The Jones Family of IN: Greg, you had things all arranged to deal with the weather and a great crew of strong guys to help me set everything up. I couldn't believe it started to snow just as I started singing, but in some ways that made it all the more beautiful! You and your family and friends were very hardy to stay out there in the freezing cold and snow and I loved meeting the doggies from the animal shelter. You are a kindhearted man who would go out of his way to help the poor animals who are homeless through no fault of their own. I enjoyed hanging out with you and your family after the show and I thank you for your support and encouragement along this adventure. I hope the fog machine works!!

Jason Reph and Darrel Moyer of PA: Two young guys in PA who live in different towns but were both wonderful guys with stellar displays and so much alike it was eerie. Jason, I so enjoyed hanging out with you and I commend you on your magnificent display which even included a model train set! It seemed as though every inch of your house was decorated and I really loved playing with the train set indoors. Your parents were gracious hosts and those chocolate chip cookies kept me going for miles and miles on my journey! The next night I met Darrel and his parents and you reminded me so much of Jason I would have thought you were brothers! Darrel I was amazed at your vast knowledge of blow molds (my favorite Christmas decorations) and the extent of your collection, and I thank you and your father for taking me to see the other display that had even MORE blow molds! I love the spirit and warmth of both of you guys and your families and would love to visit with you again. In fact, I'm hoping next summer to return to PA and maybe meet both of you someplace for lunch. I hope you would be up for that! And one more thing: ladies, if you think all the good ones are taken, you should know that there are two good looking, kind, smart and generous young men in Pennsylvania who are BOTH SINGLE. There....just call me Ms. Matchmaker!

The Shanks and all the folks at Paul's Bakery and gift shop in VA: Howard , although our concert was canceled due to the storm, you showed me gracious hospitality in your beautiful home and it was such a pleasure to meet you and Paula and your daughter. I'm sorry that we didn't get more time together, but I really enjoyed watching your show and especially those cool light tower things and I'm so glad we got to spend more time together at dinner that night. Paul and Sandy and everybody at Paul's bakery: thank you for a fun-filled afternoon and all of your kindness. Getting to visit Paul's display, which is almost entirely made by him and features a whimsical and charming community of gingerbread boys and girls having a grand time, was an extra added bonus that filled me with delight. All of you in Fredericksburg made it a totally terrific day for me in spite of the bad weather.

William Bottomley of NC: A show at the fire station with an actual stage and a live broadcast! A Santa Claus with hairy arms but a great sense of humor and a killer smile! People flashing their lights and honking their horns and kids dancing in the driveway! And Austin Caviness! And a handsome and brilliant host (yes, that's you William) who didn't look like the Mayor of Weeble-ville!! A delicious chicken tender dinner! Tons of kids with cool southern accents asking for my autograph! And then to top it all off with a relaxing night in a beautiful B&B in MAYBERRY, of all places! What can I say? It was totally fun and amazing....all of it. THANK YOU!!

The Browns of NC: You get the award for the only display on the tour with an actual flying angel! What a magnificent and spiritually uplifting display that really celebrates Jesus as the reason for the season. I was proud and honored to be a part of it. And you really went all out by getting the church children's choir to perform with me, which made it all the more special and fun for me and, I hope, for them. All the photographers and video cameras there made me feel like a star, and then the icing on the cake was actually having the KEY TO THE CITY presented to me by the Mayor!!! How cool is THAT?!?!? David and Linda, thank you so much for your encouragement and enthusiasm every step of the way on this project. I know you have been praying for me, and that God has kept me in His hands through the whole thing because of it.

The Charpiats of NC: Oh my gosh! Words CANNOT describe the amazingness of your display. FIVE ACRES of FUN with THOUSANDS of people going through. It's a regular theme park and you don't charge people a cent to go through's a true labor of love. Everywhere I turned something new to squeal over and as long as I live I will never forget the sight of those five little kids with their noses pressed against that window, laughing and pointing at the animated figures inside the little house. As you said, that's what it's all about. And I haven't even begun to talk about our wonderful afternoon of sightseeing on Pilot Mountain and around Mayberry! These are memories that will last for my whole life. God bless you and THANK YOU for making me feel so special.

The Greers of SC: The time we spent together after the concert was even more fun than the concert itself, and the concert was pretty darned fun! The display was wonderful and clearly gave joy to everyone around. Kenny, you are the sweetest and warmest guy, and you've got a beautiful, smart and funny bride to boot and parents and friends who are the tops. You clearly deserve it all. I so enjoyed hearing your love story and the friendship and fellowship we all shared that night. I hope one day to see you in a play for I'm sure you are a very talented and vibrant actor. Please keep in touch and let's do it again!

The Drums of GA: Oh Larry, you wanted so badly for everything to go right, and it did! I was touched that you were so concerned about every detail but I hope you finally relaxed after all was said and done. Singing out there among the several houses that were part of the display was incredible....especially your sequence to "The House on Christmas Street." It blew me away. We had a wonderful crowd and once again dancing in the street. Thank you for it all, and also for the delicious dinner and please thank your wonderful neighbors for their gifts and that delicious chocolate cake. I had a wonderful chat with the Mrs. and I sincerely wished I'd had more time to spend just talking with you guys and enjoying the hospitality of your home. And those doggies!!

And last but not least: Mr. Walker of FL: A beautiful display with your handpainted scene on the garage (you are very artistically talented)...a WARM evening, a great crowd, and, most of all, you and your boys. I couldn't imagine a more wonderful way to wrap up the house concert portion of the tour than having a fun event followed by the great talk we had in the house afterward. You are doing an amazing thing with those boys and I pray that God will bless you a thousandfold for it and give you everything you need as your journey progresses. Thank you for sharing your home and hospitality with me.

I haven't even mentioned the MANY PC people who came to the concerts along the way and really made me feel special. It was a true pleasure to meet each and every one of you...the guests and the hosts...and I hope you know that all of you helped create a truly once-in-a-lifetime journey for me, with little miracles all along the way. I consider all of you friends now, and I hope and pray that God will bring us together again in the future. The words do not come which express how I feel about this whole thing, and about you who made it all happen.

On my 50th birthday on July 11th 2009 I cried all day, thinking that the best part of my life was over and that I was a failure career-wise. Little did I know that the very best was yet to come. God bless you all. You have all shown me in so many ways that it really is a WONDERFUL life.

With love,

Monday, December 20, 2010

North Carolina I Will Never Forget You Part One

Well, I actually cried leaving Larry & Rachel Charpiat's home tonight.  But more about that later....

On Sunday morning I awoke at the lovely B&B and decided that, since I only had a two hour drive to my next stop, I would take a look around Mt. Airy, which is the town where Andy Griffith grew up and upon which his fictional "Mayberry" is based.  These folks really know how to do it up right for the tourists.  There's the Andy Griffith Museum, the Andy Griffith Playhouse, and then of course downtown there's Floyd's Barber Shop, the town Jail and Courthouse and Snappy's Restaurant among other things.  I enjoyed my time there even though most of the stuff was not open.  It was cool to see the TV Land statue of Andy and Opie set in front of the Andy Griffith Museum and the Surry Arts Council building, which actually has a sign out front that says "Siamese Twins Exhibit." It made me wonder what other TV Land statues were out there.  I only know about two others...Mary Tyler Moore and Ralph Kramden.  Do you know of any others?
  I wanted to use the internet so I went and hung out a McDonald's for a little while and while I was there I sat across from an older gentleman who looked a lot like Deputy Barney Fife.  He seemed kind of lonely so I just talked to him for a little while, and later, as I was leaving town, I saw him outside just walking around alone. That made me feel kind of sad.

It was a nice day and a relatively short drive to Indian Trail, where I arrived at the home of Lisa and David Brown in plenty of time to get set up and then go spend a little time at the hotel.  I arrived back in time for a delicious supper of chili and then chat up the little church choir, The Soaring Eagles, that David had invited to sing with me.  They were all real sweeties and I could see that they were excited to be there, so that made me excited too.

The show was especially fun because of the kids in the choir. They did a couple of fantastic numbers before I started and joined me for Schoolyard Rudolph and Pickles.  Once they got over being nervous they seemed to have a fun time.  There were a ton of people out on the street for this show and to see the beautifully decorated houses.  It really is quite spectacular..especially the huge angels that are on the little of them actually flies up into the air during "The House on Christmas Street."  Lisa and David won the Planet Christmas decorating contest last year for their synchronization to "The House on Christmas Street" so it was really special for me to sing it at their house.

 David Brown had somehow arranged for a stage and really good lighting which made it easier to see the people in the street and to get them out there dancing.  The street , which is a cul de sac, was blocked off during the concert and people were, literally, dancing in the street.  It wasn't too cold that night so that made it all the better!  Their  light show for "The House on Christmas Street" features Charlie Brown and Linus as "the carolers" and one of the most amazing things I saw on the tour:  a "flying" angel who rises up during the "bridge" of the song. If you want to see what I'm talking about , watch their video here:  I also really like their "Christ is Born" sign on the roof.  Very very beautiful!
I was touched by the speech that was made after the concert by the lady from the Union County Christmas Bureau, the charity that the Browns help support with their display. I just learned that this season they raised $4200 so that area families could have nice Christmases.  Congratulations David and Lisa!  Well done!
But the thing that actually brought tears to my eyes was when the Indian Trail Mayor came up to the stage and presented me with an actual key to the city.  I was really surprised and at a loss for words. I felt so honored and just speechless to be honored in that way.  It is beautiful and if you'd like to see it just look in my Facebook pictures.  It will be displayed on the mantel in our living room along with the engraved brick I got in Elgin, TX and the little "Danny Award" for Biggest Red Coat I was given by the XTRA 99.1 guys in Gloucester, VA.
 Speaking of Neal, he and his cohorts love to call me up and, if I don't answer, leave the phone on to record about half an hour of their show on my messages.  It's always fun to listen to, but this morning I heard a bunch of chickens singing "Carol of the Bells" which was weird, even for them.

 After the show and autographs were done the street was opened up and David and Lisa had to be out there directing traffic as car after car came up the street to watch their show.  I really enjoyed their program as well.  They really make quite a show out of it with not just songs but interesting effects and even Linus and Charlie Brown discussing the meaning of Christmas.  There were people parked along the side of the road who didn't want to leave because they'd missed the beginning of the really kept people entertained!

Back on track now, I want to say a huge THANK YOU to David and Lisa, a wonderful couple who really went out of their way to make sure a lot of publicity was done for the event and who, like everyone else on the tour, made me feel like a very special guest.  I don't know what I'm going to feel like when I have to go home and just be plain old Judy again.  All of this pampering has really spoiled me!

Well, I thought I'd have enough energy to go ahead and write about tonight's show here too, but I'm fading fast so that will have to wait and you'll have to find out why I was a blubbering mess when I left there when I next write again.....

Good night!  It's on to the Fred Olds Elementary School in Raleigh tomorrow and then on to South Carolina!

Last Monday of the Tour

I woke up this morning with my eyes practically swollen shut.  I don't know why but it was a horrible sight to see in the mirror, let me tell you.  Also, I really should have had that carpal tunnel surgery before I made the tour cause the pain in my right hand has been waking me up in the middle of the night just about every night, even though I sleep with the splint on.
I know, complain, complain.  But at least this morning I'm not talking about food!  I just read through all of the posts I've made on the tour and I talk about food in every one of them!  Sheesh!  Okay, I'll get through this one with no further mention of food.....

Where did I leave off?  Oh yes, the trip from Gloucester, VA to Ennice, NC on Saturday. I was slightly trepidacioius about that trip because I'd heard that the weather was iffy, but it was actually pretty uneventful, until I got within a half hour or so of my destination.  The Garmin took me up to the Blue Ridge Parkway.  Now I'm sure this is a lovely, scenic drive in the spring, summer and fall, but apparently no one plows or sands it in the winter.  Hey Garmin....George Sayward  (that's an inside joke for my family, I haven't suddenly gone off my rocker.)
The drive up was horrendous.  I went about 15 miles an hour and the van was slip sliding all over the place.  At one point I came around a turn and saw the valley below, and realized I was just one slip away from crashing over that teeny tiny guardrail and meeting my Maker.  I was very relieved when I reached the top.
It was dusk at this time and very pretty up there in the Blue Ridge Mountains, but let me tell you it was kind of eerie.  I felt like I was on Walton's Mountain or something. There was NO ONE around.
I finally got to a more populated area and saw a great big sign on a building that said BOTTOMLEY (this is so horrible...I can't remember what else it said...I think it was Evergreens & Farm maybe?  It was a huge building).  This was my host's last name, so I knew I had to be in the right place.  I was so fixated on that sign that I didn't notice the Fire Station, where I was supposed to do the show, and went sailing right past it.  When I began to reach the outlands again I managed to find a driveway to turn around in and headed back, finding the Fire Station right there where I'd left it.
I was very surprised to see what William Bottomley looked like in person.  He's a young, trim, handsome guy.  All this time we had been corresponding I had been picturing someone who looked like the Mayor of  Weeble-ville, and, of course, in my usual habit of spilling out everything that pops into my brain, I told William this.  He was cool about it, and actually laughed.
This show was unique because William had decorated the Fire Station and its grounds and the show was to benefit the Glade Creek Volunteer Fire Department.  William is a cameraman for a local TV station,WXII and he had his truck there and a live stream video camera going to his site.  He also invited the station's meteorologist, Austin Caviness, to host the show and, of course, I invited him up to do" Candy" with me.  He was pretty good with it, too!  I did two performances with a half hour dinner break in between  (does that count as mentioning food?).  Santa Claus was there and he was a lot of fun.  I did notice he had awfully hairy arms poking out between his suit sleeves and glove...didn't know Santa was such a mountain man!
I enjoyed the second show the best because there were more kids there and everybody was dancing.  William had rigged things up so people could hear me on their car radios and every once in a while I'd ask them to toot their horns and blink their lights and it was so COOL.  I loved it!  There was a white SUV parked up on the hill to my right and the crowd in that vehicle was just INSANE!  And of course, as I'm sure it is with every performer, the more responsive the crowd is the more fun the show.  It was definitely rockin' during "Run Run Rudolph!" especially.

William was the consummate host, making sure my every need was met.  He had arranged for me to stay at a B&B in Mt. Airy which was lovely and all decorated for Christmas.  I fell asleep to the warm glow of a lighted Christmas tree in my room.  I was DOG TIRED from the drive and even though I attempted to watch SNL I conked out within a minute of putting my head on that very comfortable pillow.

I do want to say that ALL of my hosts on this trip have gone out of their way to make sure I was well fed (here we go again) and had nice accommodations.  That has been VERY MUCH appreciated as most nights I've fallen asleep like a rock as soon as I got in bed.  THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

I have to head out now; Larry & Rachel Charpiat in Pilot Mountain have promised me a trip up the mountain if I get there early enough.  By the way, I am doing regular quickie posts along the way on my Facebook pages.  If you haven't reached this blog through Facebook, please go over there and "Like" my fan page or send me a friend request.  I update both pages and post pictures from my cell phone every day.!/JudyPancoastMusic

Ok, now I'm only one show behind on the updates. Will try to catch up this afternoon/evening.'s a special shout out to the kids at Fred Olds Elementary School in Raleigh....I'm coming to see you tomorrow and I can't wait!!! 

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Friday the 17th in Gloucester, VA

I drove to Gloucester on Thursday night after having dinner with the four hosts at the Golden Corral.  Yum.  If I were rich I'd open one in Goffstown.  I LOVE their fried chicken!
Anyhow, I was pretty tired driving to Gloucester so I sang "Georgy Girl" as loud as I could and made it there in one piece.  I had to get up early the next day to go to the radio station.  The station, XTRA 99.1, is home to Neal Steele and his co-host Karl Brubaker in the morning.  They have been playing my music for three years and have been very supportive of my career but Neal does like to razz me.  So I didn't even bother to comb my hair let alone put on makeup..I just showed up in my red coat and let him insult me for 45 minutes and  tried my best to zing it back at him in spite of the fatigue!!  I was presented with several boxes of Goo Goo Clusters, which are a candy sensation that is made in Tennessee and cannot usually be found in NH.  One of Neal's listeners heard me talking about them and sent some in to the station.  There's another ten pounds on my butt in those boxes!  But I really appreciate the thoughtfulness of the lady who sent them in!
I have seriously eaten more chocolate in the past three weeks than I've eaten in the past year.  I forgot to mention that Sandy from Paul's Bakery handed me a box of gourmet truffles as I was leaving....they are sooo good so I'm limiting myself to one a day.

In addition to the Goo Goos I also was given a "Danny Award," which is basically a recycled soccer trophy, for "Biggest Red Coat."  Ha Ha.

Later I had lunch with Neal and some of the folks who are regularly featured on his show.  They were all a hoot.  I'm having a hard time remembering the name of the guy with the beard, but he told me that whenever they go out to eat at that particular restaurant they all get up and sing the national anthem and he handed me a little flag, so I got up and started singing America the Beautiful and many of them joined me.  I thought Linda, the lady sitting next to me, was going to die from embarrassment.   As it turns out, it was all a joke on me cause they never do that at all...I didn't mind, though.

The driveway party that night at Danny Joyce's house was some spectacular event. Danny's decorations are amazing...I think there were something like 500thousand lights out there.   Nate Sparks, who is a talented musician and great writer of Christmas parodies, opened the show and his daughter Demi joined him and his band on several songs.  They are a hard act to follow, but I had to go on next.  It was a VERY exciting and fun performance because there were lots and lots of people there and Neal had really built up the Grammy nomination on the air in the days leading up to the event, so they were all excited too.  It was somewhat cold but not nearly as bad as it had been in Indiana and Pennsylvania.Karl's version of "Candy" with me was a rare thing unlike any other that has been on the tour. That's the only way I can describe it!
  My show was followed by a set from Juniper Green, two young guys who are very talented and harmonize beautifully.  I made sure to get a copy of their demo before leaving.

The whole event was a benefit for the local food bank and animal shelter, and I was very happy to learn the next day that they had raised over three tons of people and pet stuff!  It feels really good to be part of the events everywhere that have benefited so many different charities.

I owe a great debt of gratitude to all the people who put that event together....and I met so many nice people that day and night....and they all made me feel very welcome.  I was dead meat on a hook by the time I got back to the hotel, though.  I actually fell asleep at the computer back at the hotel.
So now I'm two days behind cause I still have to tell you about Saturday night and tonight...but I'm once again dog tired so I'll have to sign off now and then maybe write more in the morning!!
Hasta manana!!

Many Thanks to So Many People

 The tour has officially been on for three weeks, and yet it seems like a lifetime to me.  I've met so many wonderful people and had so many unique experiences and I thank each and every one of you for the graciousness, hospitality, caring and affection that you have shown to me along the way.
So where did I leave off?  Oh yes....Cleona, PA on Wednesday night.  I finally got to meet Darrel Moyer, a young college student I have been corresponding with for a long time through and Facebook.  I was wondering what Darrel would be like in person because his emails are always so detailed and enthusiastic and he seemed like such a wonderful guy, and I was not disappointed.  He is so full of good spirit that he practically shines.  He took me on a tour of his display which is practically all blow molds (plastic figures) and I felt like a little kid.  Darrel is quite a collector and he knew the company that made each one and  sometimes even the year that it was made.  He even took me to another neighborhood to see a display where there were so many blow molds that it was impossible to count. I had a terrific evening with Darrel and his family, just as I had the night before with Jason and his family.  These two guys live only about 90 minutes from each other and they should definitely be friends.   They are both in their early 20's, have a passion for Christmas decorating and trains and are nice Christian men.  If there are any nice single young women out there who would like to make contact, let me know!

I left Darrel's and drove down to Fredericksburg the same night.  It was only two hours but felt like longer because the tiredness hit about halfway there.  I had cookies that Jason's mom had baked and I ate about 20 of them to help me stay awake.  I definitely have not lost any weight on this tour because I do eat a lot to stay awake.  Oh well, I have the big red coat to cover all the flaws!

Friday in Fredericksburg was jam packed full of activity. First of all, it was snowing.  Of course!  The snow has followed me wherever I've gone!   I started the day with my hosts, the Shanks, picking me up and bringing me to WGRQ radio where I did a fun segment with morning host Dave Adler. We had goodies from Paul's Bakery and we did "Candy" live and he did a great job on the "oh yeahs".  School was canceled everywhere so that was a bad sign of things to come, but I still had a great time.

After the interview I went back to the hotel and tried to catch up on the 100+ emails in my mailbox, then it was on to Paul's Bakery and the Young at Heart Gift Shop for a three hour appearance.  I met a gaggle of super people at Paul's, including owners Paul and Sandy and their family and friends.  Even Santa was there for the afternoon!  I felt bad because the weather was keeping people indoors, but I was mystified too......I mean, there was less than an inch of snow on the ground!  In New Hampshire there has to be at least a foot before they cancel school!  But businesses were closing and as the afternoon went on more and more people were staying in, so there weren't a lot of people who came to the shop.  Still, I very much enjoyed looking at all the nice things that Sandy sells in the shop, especially in the Christmas room, and of course the delicious treats from the Bakery and the candy counter.  I've just given up on the figure til after Christmas.

Unfortunately the Shanks had to cancel the performance due to the weather, so that made two shows so far that had to be put on ice, so to speak, because of Mother Nature.  I did enjoy watching thei rfantastic light show and the "photo ops" outside of the house,and then I went back to the bakery and Paul took me over to his house to see his display.  It was unique in that Paul made nearly every single lighted wire frame figure in his yard, and they all had gingerbread children doing things like jumping rope, playing on a teeter-totter, bowling and even taking off in a rocket ship.  He animated the lights to make it appear that his figures were doing all these things.  Paul even created a little train to take children around the display on.  He uses gingerbread people to carry on the theme of his bakery.  It was so charming and fun, and just amazing that one man had created all of this stuff.  I especially enjoyed the bowling gingerbread man, whose bowling ball went all down the lawn and then knocked over a pile of snowmen.  I wish I had a video to show you!
All of us ended up meeting at the Golden Corral, one of my favorite restaurants and we had a wonderful dinner..  It was very hard to leave them all after such a nice day.
Everywhere I've gone I've made new friends and then had to leave them.  But I will never, ever forget them or this amazing experience.
Okay, Friday deserves an update all it's that's coming next.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Nazareth for Christmas

Yesterday I made the 11 hour drive to Nazareth PA, and as I was driving I though, "Wait a minute, shouldn't I be LEAVING Nazareth and trekking to Bethlehem?"

I was delighted to get here and meet my host, Jason.  It was really hard to picture Jason from his emails...but when I met him I instantly took a shine to him.  He's just a young guy, still lives at home, and what a wonderful spirit.  His display is HUGE...can't be captured in one picture, like the Zembruskis in Washington.  I can't believe he puts it all up by himself.  He's even got a train set going around in one part of the yard!

 Unfortunately, like the last two nights before, it was FREEZING cold and despite a lot of coverage in the newspapers we didn't get a very large audience.  But the ones who were there were enthusiastic, and Mrs. Reph was serving up hot chocolate to try to keep everybody warm. Still, my fingers and toes were pretty much frozen solid by the end of the last song!  It was hard to hold the pen while signing autographs. 

I am EXTREMELY grateful to the hosts and the people who have come out to see the concert on these last three nights in such cold weather.  You are hardy souls!

I keep hearing reports that there is cold weather and storms expected over the next several days which are staying with me all through the route.  But nothing will stop me!!  I was SO encouraged to wake up this morning and see that the video of "The House on Christmas Street" has over 28 thousand views already!!  With ten days left until Christmas I hope the media will sit up and take notice.  If Ellen or Good Morning America or any of them call that will be the thing that will push the song over into the mainstream.  But once Christmas comes, it's all over for another year and I'll have to start planning some new strategy for next Christmas.  Maybe climb up on a billboard and refuse to come down until every Christmas radio station in the US adds the song?

By the way, several people along the route have asked me about my husband. One old friend even asked me if I was still married!  Well, I am happy to report that Philip and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage on May 2.  And when people say, "How come your husband lets you do this?" I say, that's the thing!  We don't "let" each other do anything in our relationship!  The word "let" implies that someone else has control over you, and that's just not how we do it.  When I first got this idea we talked it over, and talked it over with Louisa (my 16 year old) too, and we all agreed that it was worth the risk of missing one Christmas season together if my efforts were to result in this song crossing over into mainstream Christmas hit-dom.  We send each other a lot of cell phone pics and talk on the phone every day.  Plus we are in a continuing battle to crush each other playing Word Twist on Facebook, so that keeps us connected too.  The last thing I want to say is that Philip is the perfect husband for me.  He has understood my hopes and dreams and goals from Day One and has always been supportive of those efforts. 

However, if someone wanted to bring him and Louisa a casserole I'm sure he wouldn't turn it down!  I know it must be hard to keep all the balls in the air back there, especially with a demanding dog, two mischievous cats and a teenage girl.  I just hope my plants aren't dying!!

On to Cleona PA tonight and Virgina tomorrow. Thanks for reading this.  It helps to know you are out there and supporting the cause!!  Watch the video today!

Monday, December 13, 2010

I Wasn't Thinking about the Fact that it Would be Winter When I Planned This....

HA HA!  I know that sounds ridiculous but it was spring time when I began planning the tour and I really didn't give a lot of thought to the fact that I would be outside singing in freezing cold temps in some places.  But that fact really hit home the last couple of nights.
Last night in Missouri it was "wicked" cold as we say where I come from, but my host Larry, in an effort to keep me from freezing,  had me inside the garage and singing in front of a great big picture window, like I was in a zoo or a store window or something.  It was too cold for many people to get out of their cars so there wasn't a lot of audience interaction but every once in a while I'd ask the audience something and they'd flash their lights or beep their horns so that was cool!  I want to give a huge shout out to Tyson who drove 50 miles to come and see me and who got roped into doing "Candy."  He was a great sport about it, too!
I enjoyed meeting the Jeffries' and their little three year old, Elizabeth.  She was quite the little Dickens and being around her did make me nostalgic for the days when my girls were little like that.  And then I got really homesick when I was back at the hotel and had a hard time falling asleep.
But today it was back on the road for an eight hour drive from Blue Springs, Missouri to Indianapolis, IN.  The ride actually went by unbelievably fast. I was listening to a riveting novella from the new Stephen King book and it made the time fly by.  I also got four calls from various reporters and did interviews with them...that was pretty exciting.  I got here in plenty of time to come over the the hotel and take a 20 minute power nap before going over to the Jones' house.  It was another freezing cold night...about 15 degrees....and it started to snow while I was setting up the equipment.  We had to keep the piano under a tarp until it was time to use it, and then once I did turn it on I was able to play it for about 30 seconds before it completely stopped playing.  I think it was just frozen!  So I had to scrap that song, but singing along with Greg's sequence to The House on Christmas Street was a great experience with the snow coming down.
All day I've been wondering how the video is doing out there in cyberspace and I was just delighted to sign on tonight and see that it's up to 18, 301 views!!  In just four days!!  That's pretty astounding!  Of course I would guess that 30% of those views are from this one friend of mine, Joe, down in Massachusetts!!  He's an old friend and has been a great supporter of my music through the years.
So tonight I've got to get to bed early because tomorrow it's an 11-hour drive to Nazareth, PA and the Reph household tomorrow night.  Today it hit me that Christmas is in only 12 days....and I really can't tell if this tour has resulted in any more airplay on radio or not.  I know that my hosts have gone really all out to try to get publicity for their concerts, and there has been a lot of coverage, but it's hard to tell what kind of effect that's having.  To be completely honest, my hope right now is that the video will explode and someone in the national media will take notice.  It would be so great to get the chance to sing it on a national TV show.  But with all the good things that have been happening lately, maybe that's a little too much to ask.  I don't know.  I do know that I'm meeting a lot of really super people and having a wild journey, but every night when I go to bed in a different hotel room I'm missing my husband and my girls and my dog and my cats and my hamsters so much.  I knew this would be a sacrifice but it's something we all agreed was worth the try; I just didn't realize how it would feel.  I've never been away from them this long.  The good news is that they are all coming down to meet me in Florida on Christmas and we will all drive back together, so that's something to look forward to.
Bear with me...I'll be back to my jovial self tomorrow.  I just need to get some sleep, so good night!!

Alas, No Golden Corral In Missoula

The saga continues....
When last I wrote I was planning on heading to the Missoula Golden Corral.  After winding my way through Missoula I finally got to the address that was listed online and there it was....a Ford dealership.  AGGH!  I called the number of the restaurant to get one of those tri-tone beeps and hear "the number you dialed has been disconnected."  So it was a quick trip through the Wendy's drive-through and then I hit the road again.  By the way, I liked the old, sea-saltless fries better.
Friday's driving went along just fine until just about sunset, when my Garmin dumped me off the highway and put me on a road that was about 100 miles of nothing combined with dangerous curves and scary downhills.  It seemed like I just kept going downhill and never going up again...and with it being dark and the scenery literally invisible it sort of felt like I was driving down into the bowels of the earth.  I was running out of gas again.....shouldn't there be a law that there's a gas station at every exit?  And the Garmin showed the closest gas station to be 50 miles away so I was praying to God that it was wrong and I wouldn't get stranded out here in the barrens, when I came to an intersection in the town of Lame Deer and saw a brightly lit oasis up the road to my right.  I shouted out a "thank you" that no one but God could hear and made my way up there.  When I got out of the van to pump the gas I was immediately surrounded by four or five DOGS.  They all seemed pretty friendly so I asked the guy pumping gas across from me if they were his dogs.  He said, "No...those are strays.  You're on an Indian Reservation now!"  I'm not sure why stray dogs and Indian reservations go together..that might be just my ignorance...but somewhere in the back of my mind Paul Revere and the Raiders started singing.  It just seemed kind of weird that the guy said it like somehow I had wandered into a strange and dangerous land.
I went into the store and there were three people in there,two women behind the counter and a big guy wearing the strangest women's makeup I had ever seen...eyeshadow, eyeliner, the works.  They were all very friendly.  They let me use the rest room even though it was marked as "NOT A PUBLIC RESTROOM" and when I came out they were all laughing at some good joke.  I don't know why, but I had the sneaking suspicion they were laughing at me.  That might just be me being paranoid because by this time I was getting that Twilight Zoney feeling, you know?
The rest of the ride through Hell's detour was treacherous and scary, but at least I had a full tank of gas.  I made it to my destination, Deadwood, SD, around 1am and everyone there was talking about the snow. I seem to have brought winter with me nearly every place I've been!
I barely remember the Deadwood hotel room. I jumped up early Saturday morning to hit the road for Minnesota, eager to meet the Bicknase family and perform again.  Things were going along swimmingly along I-90.  I took an exit to get gas and that's when I saw the message from Dan Bicknase:  "I-90 into Minnesota is closed because of the snow.  We have to cancel."  I called him and learned that there was just no way to get to their house.  I would have tried in spite of the weather, but with roads closed it was impossible.  I was SO DISAPPOINTED.   I've been planning this tour for months and assuring everyone on it that I would get to there houses no matter what. I really feel I've let the Bicknase's down.
I stopped at Wall Drug in Wall, SD to pick up some postcards and get some of the donuts I'd seen advertised on their roadside signs for the last 30 miles or so.  The last time I was there it was summer and the place was wall to wall (no pun intended) people. This time it was like a ghost town.  Everyone there was telling me that the roads a little farther east were treacherous and I ought to just give it up and stay in Wall, but I kept going nonetheless. At some point I took a detour into Badlands National Park, but I can't remember if that was before or after I went to Wall.  The weather was nice and even  sort of sunny so I took the extra time to motor around the park loop since I had no where I had to be that night.  I paid for this later when I was driving across the prairie down to Yankton (a last minute decision because by this time the roads WERE bad).  It was dark out even though it was only about 5pm and the wind was blowing unimpeded across that flat land, stirring up snow squalls that blinded me completely.  At times I had to nearly stop the van and pray no one would come along behind me.  So happy when I got to Yankton, although I was bored out of my mind that night and started to feel VERY homesick.  "It's a Wonderful Life" was on TV and that always makes me cry.  I caught up on email and stuff and hit the hay.
And speaking of hitting stuff I've gotta hit the road for Indianapolis (Fishers, to be exact) so I'll have to continue this later.
Thanks for coming along with me!  Watch for my mini updates and road pictures on Facebook!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Neither Rain nor Sleet nor Lookout Pass....


After enjoying a wonderful lunch with my Washington host, Mark Zembruski, I made a really stupid tactical error.  I needed to gas up, and there was a McDonald's with free WiFi next to the gas station, so I decided to hang out and take care of some business.  About 90 minutes later, I hit the road.  By this time I think it was around 3:30 pm....and the skies were foreboding.
I'd decided to drive all the way to Missoula, MT last night and Mark graciously offered to book my hotel room there, so I was all set.  It was supposed to be about a 7-8 hour drive.  No problem, says I.  HA HA.

First on the driving hit parade I had to go back through Snoqualmie pass, which had been a breeze when I was coming in but which was now snow covered and blowing snow as well. It was a relief when I finally made it through that.  I stopped in Ritzville, WA for about a half hour and had a peppermint mocha and used the internet to see how the new video is doing, then I hit the road again.  BTW the new video can be found here:

I passed through Spokane and at some point I decided to get off the road again and get a soda.  That's when I got lost in a giant truck facility.  I felt like I was in a nightmare, but I finally got back on the road, only to hit the mother of all dangerous driving conditions...a blizzard in a mountain pass. This was the thing I'd been fearing the whole time I was planning the trip.  Cars and trucks sliding all over the place.  I can't even remember what time it was when traffic finally came to a dead halt in the middle of I-90 at Lookout Pass in Idaho.

Snoqualmie Pass had been a cakewalk compared to this. I can't even remember what time it was but I know we were stopped for at least an hour, probably more as they cleared accidents and sanded a lane.  I actually fell asleep while waiting.
 Going again gave me a second wind and I was doing pretty well until  it got to be around 3:30am and I could feel the eyelids drooping.  I was not far from my exit so I sang loud and tapped my leg to stay awake...and then....and then.......ten miles from my exit........I RAN OUT OF GAS!!!!!!  (Ah yes, I can hear all the men out there groaning.  )  I really thought I had enough to make it, but I was going up a hill and apparently the little bit that was left sloshed the wrong way and everything started to die.  I pulled over and there I was TEN MILES from my exit in darkest night.  I called AAA and by the way, you should know that if you are a member of a local AAA club your number does not work all over the US...but they got me connected to the right club and one hour later the tow truck arrived. I was terrified of being stuck out there so I got out of the van and stood in the snow off the road for a good portion of that time.  In that whole time only one Good Samaritan stopped and it was a WOMAN.  I told her I had AAA coming with gas and she went on but God bless you lady wherever you are.
The tow truck driver, Jake, got a little confused about where I was (even though I gave specific location apparently it got lost in the translation between me and the dispatcher and Jake) but he was a sweetie.  He put the gas in and charged the battery, which had died by then from the flashers, and I was on my way.  I made it to the hotel at 5:15am and another Good Samaritan at the front desk gave me a late checkout so I was able to drop into the sack.  Unfortunately, I awoke at 10:30 am with a horrendous cramp in my right leg and couldn't get back to sleep so decided to do laundry and catch up on email and stuff.

I'm hitting the road again and going to try to make it to Rapid City tonight. But first I'm going to do the one thing that I have been dreaming of during this whole trip and have not had time to do and that is hit the GOLDEN CORRAL!!!!!!!

More later, if I survive!!

From the Farthest Western US Stop on the Tour....

Here I am in Woodinville, Washington,in the Pacific Time Zone, and what a night.  Woodinville is a suburb of Seattle.
When I finally got to the Zembruski home after an eight hour drive north through mountain passes and the like I was in shock and awe at the brilliance and size of their Christmas display.  It's got a combination of lights, blow molds (those plastic figures) wire frames and inflatables plus things that Mark has made (like the beautiful Peanuts Nativity) and it lights up the night like nobody's business.  I knew right away that I was in the right place!
This lovely family treated me to a dinner of Chinese (hadn't had that at all since starting the tour!  YUM YUM!)and then we set everything up.We tried to get the streaming broadcast going, but the internet was somehow not cooperating.  We did, however, get the whole thing recorded and that should be up on the site soon.
The Zembruskis are raising money for the Woodinville Wranglers Special Olympics team and many of them were there last night which made it extra special.  The concert went off without a hitch....and then it came time to  do "Candy," which is a song where a look for a volunteer from the audience who has a "great big deep manly man voice."  Mark led a man, I presumed a friend of his, up to do the "audition".  This man introduced himself as "Bob" and was wearing a Maine since I was born and raised in Maine, we chatted a little about that.  Then I went through the "audition" process.  Part one, the guy has to say "OH YEAH" into the mic in his deepest, most manly-man voice.  Well, this guy made my bones rattle, his "OH YEAH" was so deep and resonant.  Long story shorter, he passed the audition.  Then I had to teach him the chorus, in which all he has to do is say "OH YEAH" at the end of every line.  Along about the second "OH YEAH" I was about to say, "You know, you've got a great voice...have you thought about doing radio?" when my brilliant mind put this together like a jigsaw puzzle:  "Bob" + "radio voice" + some time ago Mark told me that the world- famous- Christmas- novelty- song- legend- Bob Rivers ("12 Pains of Christmas" among many others)  lived up here= what I blurted out, which was "WAIT!!  Are you.....BOB RIVERS?"  to which he responded "yes" and I proceeded to do a Wayne's World "I'm not worthy" bow and make a complete giggling fool out of myself.  It was a moment that totally, as John Mayer once said, kicked me in the b--t (well, that's not exactly what John Mayer said, but this is a family friendly blog...) 
The whole thing was a massively mind-blowing experience.  To understand this, you have to know that Bob Rivers "Chimney Song"and his whole TWISTED CHRISTMAS CD (well, we have it on a cassette) have been among our family's favorite Christmas music FOREVER.
Unfortunately, Bob had to bolt right after the song and I never did get to chat with him, but I suspect somebody out there will post a video of it soon.
The rest of the concert went swimmingly as the kids warmed up and danced and a wonderful time was had by all, especially me!
THANK YOU to the Zembruski Family, to Sarah my handmaiden for the evening, to Bruce "Indiana Jones" the camera man who tried valiantly to get the concert to stream live, and to everyone involved.  It was a evening that made memories that will last me for the rest of my life!!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Last night in Idaho...

It was a wild night in Idaho where I met Terry Hurrle and his family. Terry is quite an interesting man with lots of stories to tell. He asked me if I like pizza and I said, 'Pizza!! I haven't had any at all on this tour! Let's have pizza!" so off we went to Idaho pizza...and it was deee-lish, especially those Idaho twists which are like cheesy breadsticks only twisted up with the cheese. MMMmmmmmm!

With all this talk of food I guess you know why I have this girlish figure, huh?

This show was unique in that Mrs. Hurrle has a private daycare and many of her charges were there. In fact, a whole bunch of them got up and did "Schoolyard Rudolph" with me and this little kid, Cameron, conducted them. What a hoot! I loved it. And they all went crazy dancing too. It was so much fun for me!

People came from as far away as Boise, about an hour away, to see Terry's display, enjoy the goodies (I never did get one sip of my hot chocolate!) and donate to CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children) plus offer up non-perishables for the local senior centers.

I really enjoyed hanging around in the house with the menagerie of three little doggies (I think they were Shih tzus) and a cat. What a riot! They were all so cute and the dogs are about the same size as the cat.

I got a pretty good night's sleep over the border in Oregon, but I have to head back to Terry's because he wanted me to sign his banner but forgot to ask last night. So it's off to do that and then head into Pacific Coast Time and the Zembruski house up in Woodinville, Washington.

Watch out, cause here I come!!'s the first video I've seen posted of one of the customized versions of THOCS. The display and choreographed lights will knock you out!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Catching Up!

hi Everybody....
Just a little update as I have some time before I have to leave for ID this morning. First of all, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart to all of the hosts and fans I've met so far. It's been an AMAZING adventure so far with more to come! I will carry happy memories of each and every one of you for the rest of my life. Thank you for welcoming me into your lives. And now, a little word about every stop:
Brian got a ton of publicity and had the local cable access station out to film the concert. As usual, Brian and his family were warm and welcoming in spite of the technical difficulties! In case I don't get a chance to do it, I want to say a special "hi" to daughter Teagan was her last year helping her Dad decorate before she goes off to college. :( But I'm sure she'll be a great success there! Also want to congratulate Joyce on the publication of her children's book!
I want to give a special shout out to Paul in the UK with his partner Chris who had the unusual circumstance of having to hang around me for three days, and listen to me scream my head off for 20 minutes or so when I found out about the Grammy nomination. If you haven't seen the piece from the BBC on FB you should check it out. I think Paul posted it on YouTube as well. Please watch it here:

I was fortunate to have my amazing daughter Emma drive with me from the airport in Newark to Franklin. I was tired after an eight hour delay in England so Emma rose to the challenge and offered to help. What a great bonus to me to have my girl with me! We had a wonderful time with Chuck Smith, the founder of, and his beautiful wife. There was the sweetest little girl who came out on the landing of the staircase behind the stage, and she was the highlight of the show for me. I can't wait to see pictures of her all dressed up in her jolly Christmas outfit! Mr. and Mrs. Smith treated us to a fine lunch after the show...I had catfish and hush puppies...real southern fare. YUM!!!

In Elgin I performed at the Holiday by the Tracks celebration during the day and enjoyed the warm sunny day (it was in the 70's!!) During the first set I was reminded why it's called Holiday by the Tracks as a train came barreling through town, blowing its whistle for all to hear. We paused the show to pay homage. I was blown away when the Mayor came out a presented me with a brick fashioned from local clay and engraved. It is very special and will take a spot up there on the mantel...perhaps soon to be accompanied by a little gramophone? Probably not, but so what? The brick is more special to me than the Grammy because it came from the heart of the town, where I had a wonderful time. Thank you Forest and Cheryll for your hospitality and a chance to try barbecued sausage wraps...yum! They are super nice people and have Christmas tree in every room of their house! I enjoyed talking with Dr. Dennis (aka Cheryll) about children's literacy and seeing her vast collection of children's books, as well as relaxing for a little while in that comfy chair!

The barbecue was also delicious at Linda Brown's house in Lubbock, where her handsome hubby cooked up enough food for an army, including his specialty, bacon-wrapped peppers with cream cheese. Linda invited me to do an afternoon concert at the nursing home where she works and that was a very special experience. I cheered when I saw her display...which had Santa Claus up on the roof....along with all the reindeer! in fact, Linda had every element of the song in her beautiful display, plus a great video she made to go with the song. She and her whole family were a hoot and I felt right at home there, as I did with the Dennis family in Elgin. I want to especially thank Linda's sons and her sister Trecia, who is my new expert roadie, and her sister Sue who handled my merch table like a pro. Come on the road with me!
For those who were wondering how I made it from the Browns in Lubbock to the Holdmans in Pleasant Grove, I drove about five hours after the show in Lubbock and spent the night right outside of Albuquerque. By the way, I did see EVERYBODY's lights from there! HA HA! Then I drove the rest of the way yesterday.

The Holdmans were wonderful also and their whole community turned out. There were about 200-300 people on the hill in front of the house and it was like a stadium out there! Richard's daughter Sierra came down and danced on the lawn with me in front of Richard's magnificent display. After the concert I signed a ton of pictures in the drizzle and then we worked until late last night on an OFFICIAL HOCS video with a professional crew. I can't wait to see it. The last thing they had me do was spin around and I got so dizzy I pretty much landed flat on the ground by the end of it. But it was FUN!!! Richard says he'll try to edit it and post it ASAP. Thanks so much for that extra piece Richard. It was a real honor to have you go that extra mile for me and my little song.
SO FAR SO GOOD!!!! I'm enjoying my travels and have listened to tons of music in the car and so far an entire Jonathan Kellerman Alex Delaware novel. I've been working my way through them chronologically since the beginning of summer and have two more to go, so I'll be starting the next one this morning on my way to Fruitland, ID.
Please keep me in your prayers and look for me out on the road. I have internet on my Blackberry so if you want to email at I would love to hear from YOU YOU and most of all YOU!!!
Now today it is on to Fruitland, ID.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


I just got the news!! I'm here in England getting ready to come back to the US and I just found out before coming into the airport! You can't imagine how excited and happy I am. This is a dream come true and I really don't even care if I win (although of course I would love to win) but it's really true that just to be nominated feels GREAT after all the hard work I did on this CD. This is a goal I've been striving for since I was 12 years old and saw Karen and Richard Carpenter get their Grammys. I'm so happy!!!
Here's the OFFICIAL site!

Thank you to everyone who has supported my music throughout the years!!


The concert and the whole evening were fantastic! I'll write more about that later...just got a call from Paul at 2am asking if I was awake (couldn't sleep anyway). There's more snow and we have to leave for the airport in Birmingham (2 hours away) NOW!

This Just In..

Last concert of the tour on Christmas Eve at the Doubletree Resort in Orlando

Concert in England Tonight!

I woke up to a beautiful, sunny day in merry old England. Hard to believe all of this is happening because of one little song, but I'm so happy and excited. I want the concert to go well tonight. We are using all Paul's equipment so I can't help anything that might go wrong there!
It's funny, I never ever get nervous before a show, but I guess the shows on this tour are a whole 'nother level. I know the press will be there and there will be lots of videos and so forth, and I guess that must be what's making me just a teensy bit queasy.
Providing there are no technical difficulties, the concert will be streamed live at 6:30 pm England time, which is 1:30pm EST in the US. The web address is and I hope you can watch, and please let me know what you think of it!