Dani Stone

I Hear Laugh Tracks


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Video – Listen To Your Mother 2013

Remember in May when I yammered on and on about being chosen for the Kansas City cast of Listen To Your Mother? Then I yammered on about how great the show was? Well, for those of you who couldn’t attend, the videos are up!! Yay. *flop sweat* So now you can see what all the excitement and yammering was about.

My video is below. I did manage to look at my Dougie at the end, and I held back the ugly-faced cry as long as I could.

Sincere thanks to –

Producers Erin Margolin and Laura Seymour for allowing me the chance to tell Katie’s story.

My Dougie for being my rock, and also the OCD yin to my flighty yang.

Buck Sommerkamp for shooting a video that only highlighted one of my chins.

Lisa, Sarah, Greta, Molly, Michelle, Jen, Julie, Rita, Sarah, Ashley and Leslie for being the instant sisterhood I needed to get on the stage, open  my mouth and make the words come out. You are – Once in my life, forever in my heart. If I got tattoos I would totally tattoo that but instead, just imagine the phrase winding around my ankle or scrawled across my chest.

To see videos of the other beautiful strong women I shared the stage with that night, Click HERE, then scroll down till you see “Listen To Your Mother – Kansas City 2013” (next to the last row). Grab some popcorn and more than one tissue.

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Remembering Joyland

Recently, I read the new book by Stephen King, Joyland. I was attracted to the promise of a story that was King-Light (now, with half the gore of a traditional Stephen King novel). I was also intrigued by the premise of a murder mystery with a hint of the supernatural. The review appears today on Book End Babes.

Joyland1-300x300When I read that the story took place in a fictitious amusement park named, Joyland, I thought, “But it’s not fictitious, it’s real. Or, at least it was.” Many years ago, Joyland was a thriving park in my hometown of Wichita, Kansas. I became so nostalgic I thought, “I should write about my beloved Joyland,” but then I remembered, wait, I already did.

This post originally appeared on the Wichita lifestyle website VerbICT in April 2010. It has been slightly edited and updated. 

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You Could Eat Off Our Pool, But The Colonel Would Not Approve

A few days ago, I wrote a post where I lamented about my son’s lackadaisical summer attitude, his obsession with Minecraft and how, due to financial burdens, we would be staycationing at Stone Casa this year. Thankfully, now we can add, “frolic in the water” to our list of frivolity options because the pool is UP, people. The pool is up and prepped and Dougie has finally given us the green light to enter.  Isn’t that AWESOME? Wait, I’m sensing you don’t realize what a big deal this is. Clearly, you don’t know what goes into the annual “raising of the pool.” No one does, really, except The Colonel.*

*In case you’re new here, The Colonel is the loving endearment for my husband when he’s being a little extra type-A. It’s okay. He knows it, accepts it and often refers to himself in the third person by using this moniker.

A few days ago I posted this message on Twitter:

If you build it, they will come. . .

If you build it, they will come. . .

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Minecraft and the Not-So-Busy Bummer Summer

j k ducks crop  resize “Summertime. . . and the livin’ is easy. . . “

If you immediately started singing the lyrics to that song you’re either a George Gershwin fan, over the age of 50 or a fan of every reality singing competition ever made. Countless hopeful starlets have destroyed this classic tune in the hopes of becoming the winner of America’s Next Top Voice Talent X Factor Idol.

Much to my chagrin, this has also become the theme song to my son’s 12th summer. While I’m in favor of letting my children relax and enjoy the fruits of their educational labor, there’s got to be some balance. Unfortunately, we’re having trouble finding that right now.

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Mama Knows

Karen Ledford Photography

Karen Ledford Photography

Last weekend I was a cast member in the inaugural Kansas City production of Listen To Your Mother. Last weekend I did something I’ve never done. I walked up to a lectern, which is like a podium but without the body-hiding security of wood panels, and told a story about my daughter. How I knew something was terribly wrong with her after she was born but no one would listen to me. How I shouted and shrieked and pointed to her little face where veins were beginning to sprout like a road map and the darkness under her eyes was becoming so noticeable, someone actually accused me of child abuse. How she almost wasn’t diagnosed in time. How we found help and encouragement from angels among us. How we sought treatment in New York, and the best part, how Katie beat insurmountable odds to be here with us today.

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Kansas Women Bloggers and Next Left Summer Cover

To say the last two months have been crazy would be an understatement.

This post is not so much a new epiphany of thoughts and feelings or even a cute post about my children or my Dougie, though, come on, seriously, how adorable is this little Girl Scout?

katie dog n shakeOr this birthday boy whom we bribed to wear the sombrero even though he felt like a, “lumping idiot.” Lumping is his new boundary-pushing curse word. I find myself saying it now. Quality parenting. 2013-04-03_17-57-18_470

Or these three precious faces snuggling on Saturday morning. You know what they say, “the family who plays WordFeud, Pokemon and Fruit Ninja together, stays together.”

fam electronics crop

Nope, this post is actually a recap of goodness, the introduction to a new blogging community and a chance to show you the new summer cover of my e-book, Next Left.

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Pushing the Gosh Ham Limits

Blatant blackmail photo

Blatant blackmail photo

My son Jacob is eleven. He started middle school this year. Not long ago, friends with older boys warned me this would be the year of hormone fluctuation, anxiety resulting from big changes at school and boundary-pushing. I have wise friends. Over the past six months he has refused to get his hair cut, his grades have dropped to the basement a few times and boundary-pushing is in full-swing.

There have been times when his bursts of independence have resulted in grounding, like the time I found out he was getting a D in Science stemming from three missing assignments. When I asked why he hadn’t completed them he performed an exaggerated shoulder-shrug and said, “I guess I just wasn’t feelin’ it.” BUZZER! Wrong answer, mister man.

Since he’s my firstborn, I’m often left wondering, “Well, how the hell do I handle these shenanigans?” I usually call my mother. Then go with my gut. Then call my mother again. Not knowing how tight to pull the apron strings is a constant internal struggle for me.

Then there are times when his offbeat humor catches me completely off-guard and I’m left wondering whether I should laugh or say, “Jacob that’s inappropriate.” I have a fairly juvenile sense of humor so even though I feel it’s my duty. . . *snicker*. . . I said doody. . . sorry.

So even though I feel it’s my du–responsibility to react in the proper parental way, sometimes my child just cracks me up and I lose all resolve.

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