The Nook

In all the excitement/exhaustion of remodeling our house last year, one small but pretty magical discovery was overlooked. We FOUND an extra little room in our house…

As we stripped off the old siding to insulate and weatherproof the house, we found a secret space in our bedroom.
We decided to put in a window. Yep. That’s a big hole in our bedroom.
New window from the outside.
From the inside.
We added a beam for support.
That was a lot of work!
It’s starting to look like a nook!
A warm nook! (all the blue is insulation.)
We added a closet.
Looking cozier.
Trim makes all the difference.
More details.
More trim and…
A single bed with drawers!
Or is it…
A double bed!
A nice cozy reading nook with a closet, drawers, and a bed! Now, it’s nap time.

Bean Boozled

Aleksy didn’t remember much about the crash. Luckily he had passed out before the truck went over the side of the mountain. Now, he was bleeding and aching all over. The whole truck was on its side and everything was dark. Aleksy fished around for his phone. There was no service, but he could the light. He climbed up to open the passenger door. It was freezing out! Even with his light, all he could see was trees covered in snow. He’d have to wait until morning to get help. As sore as Aleksy was from the crash, nothing compared to the hunger pains in his stomach. All he had eaten that day was a Slim Jim and 4 cups of free coffee from the truck stop. He wondered if there was any food in the trailer. HIs transport was from the Jelly Belly Candy Company. He opened the back doors and out tumbled hundreds of little boxes.

Aleksy flashed light on one of the boxes: Bean Boozled? Oh! Jellybeans! Aleksy laughed. Henryk and Feliks would love the story of how candy had saved their dad’s life. He grabbed an armful of boxes and climbed back into the cab. He tore open a box and poured some jellybeans into his mouth. Ten seconds later he spit them out. Was one of them rotten? He almost threw up the little food that was in his stomach, but fought to keep it down. What was going on?

He checked the box. It was a game. There were 20 flavors. Each good flavor had an identical nasty one. He’d have to take a chance on each jellybean he ate. Aleksy studied all the flavors and decided to try a light green one. It was either lime or lawn clippings. He bit it in half and chewed slowly. It was definitely not lime. But it wasn’t that bad. He ate all the light green ones from the boxes he had with him. Next, he chose the light blue ones: they were either blueberry or toothpaste. Not the best combination of flavors, but definitely not the worst. He ate them all.

As uncomfortable as he was, exhaustion set in and Aleksy fell asleep for hours. When he woke up, he checked his phone. 9am. Why was it still so dark? He shined light on the windows. They were covered with snow. He tried to open the passenger door, but it wouldn’t budge. Aleksy didn’t have the strength or energy to keep trying to open the door. Maybe eating some more jellybeans would help.

He studied the remaining flavors and chose the dark brown ones. Chocolate pudding or canned dog food. Didn’t sound too bad. Aleksy bit one in half and immediately vomited all over himself. The dog food flavor was disgusting and part of the jellybean was still stuck to his tooth. He tried to pry it off with his tongue and it made him throw up again. He wished he hadn’t eaten all the toothpaste ones.

He tried another flavor to get the awful taste out of his mouth. Agh! It was stinky socks. Aleksy felt hopeless. His phone had now officially died and he couldn’t see a thing. He grabbed a box. From now until his rescue or his death, he would have to blindly choose the flavors he ate.

Aleksy prayed for a good one. The smell of vomit was making his stomach turn. It wouldn’t take much to send him over the edge. He grabbed a jellybean and popped it into his mouth. Moldy cheese. It was gross, but he kept it down. One by one, Aleksy bit into the jellybeans, each time not knowing his fate. He was having a good run- ten in a row that he was able to swallow.

And then it happened. Skunk Spray. Aleksy’s eyes teared up and his nose burned. He spit it out, but it didn’t matter, the damage had been done. Aleksy’s life passed before his eyes. For the first time since the crash, he truly believed he would never see his family again.

Just then, a drop of water hit his cheek. Then another. They were coming in from the window. The snow was melting! Aleksy stood up and felt around for the door handle. He was able to move it slightly. He tried again using all the strength he had left and this time it swung open. Water and snow poured in on top of Aleksy, but he was able to climb out. He was soaked and freezing, but free! He looked around him. There were trees everywhere. He chose a direction and started walking. After what felt like hours the trees began to thin out. In the distance Aleksy could see a building, but he could not tell what it was. As he got closer, he could make out some red and green on the sign. R.J.’s Steakhouse. As Alexi walked up to the door, a poster caught his eye. It had a photo of a giant steak with the words “Free if you can eat it” written underneath.

Aleksy is the only man in history to have eaten the 72oz steak in one sitting and ask for seconds. His picture hangs on the wall in that steakhouse to this day.

Lincoln’s Eyes

Dear Samantha,

It’s great seeing you so happy. Really. You had us worried for a bit last year, but ever since you met Lincoln, wow. You’re so nice to be around. It’s like your whole life is worth it now. Be careful. Here’s the thing. Lincoln’s going to propose to you this weekend while you guys are at Tahoe, and I don’t think I’m ready. He wanted to surprise you, so I had to tell you. There’s something you don’t know about him.

I have now had eight different dreams where I’m being chased by a dinosaur with Lincoln’s eyes. He’s not just trying to eat me like a regular dinosaur, this is way scarier. He knows exactly who I am and he just wants to kill me. What’s up with that? Has he ever done anything like that to you?

Eight dreams about him killing me don’t just come out of nowhere. Now that you’ve thought about it, don’t you feel like there’s something in his eyes that looks a little like a killer? I don’t know if I want to see that for the rest of your life. I’m not saying run, but… maybe run?

Well, I hope you have a great time at Tahoe. Lemme know what you say. If its no, do you want to come with me and Joe to see Adele? We bought one extra ticket for you.

Love you bunches,


True Story or Urban Legend? 

I woke up this morning remembering a story I heard about in high school. I can’t remember if it was a news story or just an urban legend. I was about to google it to find out, but I decided not to. I feel like thinking about it instead, and reaching out to other people who might have heard about it too. Without looking it up, this is what I remember:

A popular teenage girl goes to a tanning salon to get a nice tan before her senior prom. She talks the people who work at the salon into letting her do multiple sessions in a row. She spends hours in a tanning bed and literally cooks herself to death. I don’t remember if she dies in the bed or later on that day. I feel like I read about this in the newspaper- I can almost picture the girl, but my mind could also be playing tricks on me. There is also an episode of Bones where a woman is murdered by being locked in a tanning bed, so obviously it’s possible.

Does anyone else remember this story?! What do you think- true story or urban legend?

Thanksgiving: The Movie

Starring Jordan Black as Donald Bigbelow

Written by Charlotte Dean

Directed by Charlotte Dean and Tracy Newman

Original film score by Tracy Newman

Filmed by Nathan Warburton

No Big Deal

Every Wednesday night, my husband and I have friends over to our house for dinner. Sometimes we play games, sometimes we make art, but no matter what, every evening ends up in some pretty interesting conversation. We’ve grown close and since most of us are not from Seattle, we’ve become a home away from home for each other. We talk about our lives, what we did that week, and who’s been pissing us off. Sometimes our conversations take on recurring themes and though the evenings come to an end, the topics come right back to life the following Wednesday.

One such topic was sparked by a comment I made one night about not understanding why cannibalism was such a big deal. I get why murder is a big deal, but if the person is already dead, what’s the problem? I told my friends that if we were stranded somewhere together and one of them died, I would have no problem eating that person. They had A LOT of questions for me and this became a popular dinnertime conversation.

A while back, I was visiting my mom in L.A. and I told her about it. I wondered if she would think of me differently. I said “Mom, I’ve thought about this a lot and I feel pretty sure that I could eat a person if I had to. Even someone I knew. So if I die and you’re starving, I just want you to know, it’s totally fine with me if you eat me.”

My mom looked at me smiling and said, “Honey, I don’t need your permission.”


Like this story? Check out The Proposal



This is a true story. It was told to me by a friend about something that happened to another friend. Like a game of telephone. So it’s true…ish.

Pretty much everything has happened to Jenny. She’s broken most of the bones in her body at one point or another, sliced her foot open on a yacht, and had multiple back surgeries. So on a quiet Tuesday morning, when the car in front of her slammed on its brakes and she, in turn, slammed into it, she wasn’t terribly surprised. Just glad that she had already dropped her daughter off at school. Jenny rolled her neck around and sighed. Another round of physical therapy for sure.

She turned off her car and went to check on the guy she hit and to find out why he had stopped so suddenly. As she got closer, she saw another car in front of his, parked in the right lane. No wonder he had slammed on his brakes! How could this jerk be parked here? This street was practically the freeway. Jenny walked over to the parked car thinking of all the things she wanted to say. She could see someone climbing around inside. “Excuse me!” she called, as she tapped on the driver’s side window. The guy inside spun around and stared at her blankly “hey.”

Jenny glared at him for a moment. “Yeah. Hey. You can’t park here! You just caused an accident.” He turned his head around to look at the cars behind him. “Well,” he said, shrugging his shoulders, “I had no choice. I had to poop, so I pulled over and went in this bucket.” He gestured with his thumb to a bucket in the back seat. Jenny didn’t want to look, but she couldn’t help it. There were two large swirls of poop. She was speechless. After a minute she said, “Um… well, couldn’t you hold it in until you found a gas station? Or at least until you got off the road?” The guy shook his head “Nah. Nah. It was an emergency and I mean, what would you have me do? Poop in my pants? That’s nuts.” He started his car and drove away and all Jenny could do was stare after him. To this day, she lays in bed at night wondering where he is, knowing he’s out there somewhere, driving around with his bucket in the backseat.


My mom recently sent me some of what she calls my “early works.” Basically the stories my dad would make me write before I was allowed to play Nintendo. Here’s one of many:Hermie Gets Homesick by Charlotte DeanHermie Gets Homesick by Charlotte Dean-1