Wendy Knuth Author of Moore Zombies, blogging about the human experience.

Author Archives: Wendy Knuth

Author of Moore Zombies: The Search for Gargoy

After playing video games with her children, Wendy Knuth was inspired to write a book about zombies for kids. She hopes that humans of every age will enjoy reading this book as much as she loved writing it. Wendy is happily married to an old, bald guy, and they live in Arizona, where they continue to raise their two zoners.

In Memoriam: My Brother

Karl Wahlberg, Wendy Wahlberg, Martha Wahlberg

I am so sad to announce the passing of my brother, Karl Wahlberg.  4-17-1968 to 4-26-2022.

He was my childhood partner in crime, mad genius, excelled in Karate, taught me some good-to-know fighting skills, and probably saved my life a time or two.

My fav pic of us! Karl Wahlberg & Wendy Wahlberg circa 1975

Karl grew up in San Diego and graduated from Mesa Community College and was quite the braniac.  During the years preceding the internet, there were dial up bulletin boards and Karl was a systems operator (Sysop) for a bulletin board or two that he personally managed, and frequented many others.

He helped me and my best friend with math in school, and I will never know the extent of his programming knowledge except to say his most recent neighbor exclaimed that what my brother had forgotten about Linux was more than he would ever hope to learn. What a wonderful compliment!

Karl Wahlberg circa 1986

Even with his more than proficient skills in computer science, Karl was keen early on to get off the grid. He bought books such as “How to Live Off 4 acres”. He saved, and then he executed that plan.  In today’s landscape this is becoming common, but back then it was not a fad. There was no internet to research and yet he made it happen.

Early living off the grid involved buying 5 acres in New Mexico where he was able to pirate satellite, haul water, and play with early solar panels and battery systems.  I always told him he was either a mad genius or a crazy man with his $20 yearly tax bill, no mortgage, and no other bills save for food, water, and gas.

While the rest of us were living the rat race, my brother enjoyed his beautiful night skies and daily duties of perhaps an early 1900’s settler, except for managing websites and the coding thing.

From Left to Right: Karl Wahlberg, Martha Wahlberg, Christopher Knuth, Branden Knuth, Wendy Knuth (Wahlberg), Dwight Wahlberg circa 2016

He did complain that piracy of the airwaves became increasingly difficult and ended up having to pay for satellite services.

Karl was definitely an apple off the tree.  He and our father looked alike, thought alike, and ended up living along the same lines.

My father, Dwight Wahlberg, who was also quite the genius, went to live with my brother after his previous engineering work for top tech companies of the day, having eschewed that type of hard work and excellent pay, and very happily so. He passed in 2017 and his death was devastating, but even more so for my brother.

While Karl died way too young, it would be a much sadder story to say he was a cubicle rat who died before ever realizing dreams of retirement.

Wendy Wahlberg & Karl Wahlberg

My take-away is that there is a fine line between a CEO of a billion dollar company and the genius of those who seek a simpler life in nature. Please look for and find the genius in the unsuspecting, and please look for and find the real beauty in life.

I am so happy that my brother spent his life how he wanted and yet so sad that we can no longer talk, including sharing our silly childhood memories. Miss you Bro!

In Memoriam: My Mom

My mom was the nicest person, generous and kind!  She was always available for help if and when you needed it.  We are all so sad at her sudden passing.  She had some underlying issues but the flu stole her life and she passed away on January 29, 2018.  In memoriam of my mother, Martha, I want to share some of her life.

My mom grew up in and around Los Angeles but lived in many cities on the west coast between L.A. and San Diego.  We fondly referred to coastal living only counting if one was west of I-5 as if anyone can afford to live that close to the beach in California anymore.

My mom played the guitar and the piano very well.  She was also an incredible violinist as a young girl up through her teens, good enough to be invited by the San Diego Symphony for an evening feature on occasion.  She actually met my father at the age of 13 as they were both violinists in orchestra.  I have never seen her play the violin and once I asked her why.  Long story short, my grandmother made her practice for hours every day and she hated it.  She said when she was practicing she would rehearse over and over again in her head something to the effect that she would never play violin when she was an adult.  Sure enough, when she moved on to college, she put it down and that was that.

A couple of funnies:  My mom’s first job was at Sears Roebuck & Co – I’m pretty sure she told me her minimum wage pay was $0.35 per hour.  Later after my mom and dad were married, my grandparents offered to sell them their house in Point Loma for $17,000.  Mom wanted to start anew and didn’t take the offer.  Bummer.  My parents bought and sold a couple of other coastal properties as our family expanded, with increasingly higher prices that would still blow your socks off in comparison to costs today.

Before my mom married, she was a physics major at San Diego State.  During her studies a professor encouraged her to apply for a physics job and referred her as “Marty,” which was her nickname.  It was a pivotal point in her life as the gentlemen who saw a woman come to interview were highly amused and pointed her in the direction of the open secretary position down the hall.  Sad to say, mom saw there would be no future in physics for her and stopped going to college.

After marriage she became a stay-at-home mom for several years.  She drove my brother and me to all of our sporting events and never missed a single one.  I have many fond memories of my brother and me singing songs with mom while she played the guitar.  We all hung out in her bedroom on the mattress, which was on the floor.  Don’t let the earlier pics fool you.  She and my father were hippie types.  There were numerous bon fire beach parties where everyone spent the night on the sand, including young children.  We also took many camping trips to Baja California, Mexico, which was gorgeous and not so dangerous back then.  We often went days, sometimes weeks without seeing other people.

After my brother and I were old enough to fend for ourselves, meaning we had both graduated kindergarten, my mom took some part time jobs.  (It was a very different time and culture back then!)  Another funny story she has in the women’s arena was the introduction of pants to the workplace.  Pant suits became a popular fashion trend for ladies in the 70’s and bosses reluctantly agreed to it thinking it might be a soon-to-fade fad.  We’re talking about the days of mandated pantyhose per the employee handbook.  Imagine if there was a section on men’s underwear requirements!

My mom ended up going back to college in her forties and received her bachelor’s degree in psychology.  She became a fiscal manager and moved up the ranks at University of San Diego at California.  She talks about when computers were first introduced and they sat in boxes on the floor for weeks because no one knew what to do with them.  We were kind of a techy family and my mom takes the credit for opening those boxes and putting the new fangled machines to use.

After retiring, she did a lot of traveling / camping / kayaking all over northern California.  Several years ago, mom decided to move inland, very east of of I-5, to Payson, Arizona to be closer to us kids.  Her back yard was up against state land and we all enjoyed watching the wildlife including elk, coyotes, and javelina, as well as other little critters and numerous birds.  After decades of having to drive hours to visit one another my mom moved into a home right around the corner from me, only three months ago.  Dammit!  Our time was much too short.  Love and miss you, mom!!!

In Memoriam: My Dad

               This isn’t so much of an obituary, but rather some fun memories and thoughts of my Dad who passed away July 4, 2017.  What to call him:  Scientist, engineer, oceanographer, diver, genius.

By the time my Dad hit high school, he was two grades ahead, which he claims was just enough to make things very socially awkward.  At the age of 16, he then went to I believe Yale, or it may have been Harvard, where he claims he majored in billiards and flunked out.  But, he went on to get an engineering degree, and really was a genius.

You didn’t want to watch Jeopardy with my Dad.  He took it very seriously and basically made you feel like an idiot as you watched him answer almost every question.  He actually tried out for the program two or three times, but his pitfalls were sports and pop culture.  I always thought it was too bad that he never made it on, but then if you didn’t have cakewalk categories, there would be less of a viewing audience.

There isn’t a book he hasn’t read.  I’m exaggerating a little bit but he was quite the bookworm and he read fast!  If you were reading the same page with him, he would turn the page before you were halfway down.  His fav was sci-fi.

My Dad alternated between being genius engineer with some dough and broke student at the Scripps Institute of Oceanography.

              Dad loved the ocean.  He was a commercial abalone diver and we had shells all over our home.  I recall going to the back doors of sea food restaurants and he would receive cash in pocket for his catch.  Not sure if that practice still works these days.  When the abalone was overfished, he had to switch to sea urchins – ouch – he hated that.


             I was very spoiled seafood-wise as a young girl.  I have gotten over complaining about buying a lobster tail at a restaurant – but as you can see from the pictures, I am not exaggerating about what my Dad used to bring home for dinner.


One time my Dad found a white abalone and knew of a lady at Scripps who was studying them, as they were rare.  So we were sitting in a parking lot waiting, when the lady drove up, and she looked kind of a little scared but I could tell she felt much better when she saw me, a young girl.  My memory is that it seemed like a sketchy back parking lot abalone deal.

                One time, my Dad caught a large shark and came home with it in the back of the pickup truck.  He was very proud and wanted a picture of his young kids sitting on his catch.  I thought the dead shark was disgusting, slimy, oozing and smelly.  I unhappily ended up sitting on that yucky dead shark, and I don’t recall ever seeing the photo, but I imagine the look on my face would be priceless.

            When my Dad had his engineering hat on, he worked for the companies IVAC and Pancretec.  He worked on IV medical pumps in their infancy.  His story is that he made the prototype for what IV pumps have become today.  Even ill in the hospital he spoke of the major dilemma being how to get over the issue of different medicines having different viscosities and how to make a pump that would work to factor in that problem.

I searched online for the history of medical pumps and would have loved to see my Dad’s name in glowing lights.  I found info on early IVAC pumps that used drips or syringe action that had issues.  My Dad spoke of coming up with a two wheel idea to push against the tubing, which is kind of what we see today.  But, I’m sure he was at Pancretec and back in the day companies often took credit for what their engineers came up with.

              A highlight of his career was a cancer patient who took the time to find out who had made the pump he was using and called my Dad at our home.  We’re talking rotary telephone, before telemarketing, before answering machines.  This man was dying, and he thanked my Dad for creating the medical pump that allowed him to spend time at his home with his family.  Dad was very proud.


When my Dad was doing the oceanographer thing, he made several scientific excursions including going to the North Pole and South Pole including visiting South America, and I wish I knew where else.  He was even on Flip and Alvin the submarine.  I did an 8th grade report on Flip with pix, that are long gone.  Flip was a vessel that literally would turn from horizontal to vertical so experiments could be done.  So, everything – toilets, sinks, beds were on the floor and also on the wall so that things were usable when the vessel would fill with water at the bottom as a ballast and flip.  I believe it was scientists in Alvin who first discovered hydrothermal vents with their own ecology of interesting and never before seen deep sea creatures, which was huge news at the time.

Flip https://youtu.be/4dftaWQLtPQ

             One funny story I always loved was one voyage where the King of Sweden was on board.  You have to realize that these scientific excursions always carried nerd types from numerous different countries and various communities: people studying salinity, polar bears, tides and currents, etc.  I don’t recall everything my Dad was studying but I do know at one point he was interested in sediments at different ocean depths.  So my Dad has the story of how one day, some scientist from another country rolled a marijuana cigarette and passed it around – we’re talking the 70’s here, and the King of Sweden said that it tasted funny, unlike a typical rolled cigarette.  He didn’t realize what it was.  No one told him.  How many people can say they smoked a joint with the King of Sweden?

              Speaking of nerds, my Dad did have the pocket full of nerdy stuff, the glasses, and yes, a slide rule.  I learned how to use it as a young girl.  When I was taking calculus in college, my Dad actually helped me when I was having difficulty with problems.  There aren’t too many people in their forties that can help their kids with math homework past algebra.

            Anyone remember bulletin board systems before the internet?  A fond but now funny memory is my Dad and I downloaded a current satellite image of west coast weather.  It took about 45 minutes, and we thought that was just amazingly cool.  Circa 1991?

Speaking of high tech, other memories include when Dad brought home our first ever microwave, our very first computer (Kaypro with tiny green screen), and our first dot matrix printer.  This was back when a floppy disc really meant floppy for those of us who know what that means, way before thumb drives.  Oddly enough, in his older years, even though he enjoyed the internet and would email, he never fully embraced the use of cell phones, including smart phones or texting.  He went back to basically living off the land for his retirement, and enjoyed answering to no one.  I believe he loved it, and I am happy for that.

Last picture with my Dad

Now that he is gone, I wish I had learned more about his excursions and his engineering work as an adult.  I guess you don’t think of these things until it is too late.


Love and miss you, Dad!

American Folklore – Songs From the Past

For some reason tonight, I had a song running through my head – Charlie and the MTA. I have old memories of my parents and us kids singing the song together while my mother played the guitar. Said mother had a very old songbook of tunes. She played, we sang. I would very much love to have that old book of songs, but along with the rest of what is now known as folklore American song history, it is long gone. It only survives by word of mouth, and unfortunately (or not), in this day and age of me and mine and now, this type of thing did not get passed down to my children, and probably didn’t get passed down to yours.

This particular funny old folk song running through my head is about the Boston subway raising their rates so that poor, old Charlie didn’t have enough money to afford the increased price, and for some strange reason he couldn’t afford to get off the subway – he had to ride it forever. I youtubed the song and could only find The Kingston Trio.

Another oldie but goodie was Boil Them Cabbage Down Down. After googling this song, I could only find a very hickish, twangish, fast bango picking version with slightly different lyrics on the Andy Griffith show of all places. My family sang it much slower and with harmony, making it a much “prettier” song than what I can offer to you:

One song that should be well known by all and is truer to the way we sang it: Sixteen Tons. A song against “The Man.” An intensely wonderful song where you can sing high, or low, or in between, that has a common, bummer theme that we all can relate to. How can you go wrong?

I will leave you with two images. Image number one is two young children on a mattress in their mother’s room as she strums the guitar and we all sing. Image number two is a bunch of hippies with their children on a beach in front of a firepit, singing together. Take your pick, they both happened.

These are only a few of the songs we used to sing. Please enjoy the songs and pass them along to the next generation!

Wendy Knuth

The Ups & Downs of Being a Stay-At-Home Mombie


As a woman, I can tell you that being a stay-at-home mom is a wonderful and rewarding job.  However, it isn’t without pitfalls.  Cook, clean, and wipe butt?  Sign me up, I’m in.  Men, don’t judge.  There is a reason why I can’t talk about being a stay-at-home dad.  Yet I’m sure the experience is quite similar.  Also, ladies, please don’t judge.  No matter how much you decide to work “outside of the home”, it is complicated.  I would just like to stress the point that being a stay-at-home parent is a full time job, without outside pay.

Decisions, decisions.  Do the math.  Can the family be supported on one income?  Now do the mental.  Can you cope?  My husband (the old, bald guy) and I opted for the scrape by method, and since we were just starting out, we decided he would be the crumb winner.  That allowed me to be a stay-at-home mom for about ten years.  Would I take it back?  Absolutely not.  Were there hardships?  Absolutely yes.

It turns out that raising children is very difficult.  At times you may feel like a sleep deprived zombie with a shrunken brain.  Oh, the ups and downs.  But, who doesn’t love a good roller coaster ride?  I actually learned a few tricks along the way.  Let’s review.

Up:  Home cooked meals and Garanimals!

Down:  Arguing over which color cup you chose to use and how much milk you poured into it.

Fix:  Compromise – change the dang cup to your child’s preference, transfer milk from Cup A to Cup B and tip milk carton as if pouring more milk, but leave the cap on – your child will feel smug, and so will you.

Up:  Being there for every single crucial moment in your child’s life.  First roll onto back, first sit up, first noise/word, first crawl, first steps. . .

Down:  The sheer difficulty of trying to make it to the grocery store in between naps, feedings and diaper changes.  Just when you think you might have an hour, nope, rethink plan, and hope there will be another window of opportunity, maybe today.

Fix:  Wait.  All good things come in time.

Up:  Things to do for free – my favorites were parks and the library.

Down:  Having accidents (of both kinds) at parks and the library.

Fix:  I got nothing here.  Oh wait – don’t take your kids anywhere, ever, and then this will only happen at home.

Up:  The excitement of experiencing everything for the first time all over again from spiders to rainbows.

Down:  The power of an instant lobotomy like headache resulting from an inhumanly and inhumane high screech made from your young child, perhaps after seeing a spider.

Fix:  Ibuprofen.

Up:  Volunteering at school and seeing the gleam in your child’s eye when they see how proud you are of him, and you can tell how proud he is to have special moments be witnessed by you.

Down:  Feeling guilty about missing something exciting at school – a play, a spelling bee, etc.

Fix:  There is none – you will feel guilty about something to do with your child(ren) for the rest of your life.

Up:  Being there to explain everything to your child, especially the why.

Down:  Your most intellectual discussion of the day probably had something to do with Dr. Seuss.

Fix: Encourage your child to read.  Explain this to him or her: “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” (Yes, Dr. Seuss).

Up:  Being so happy that hubby is home to relieve you of your duties if only for a little bit, because he realizes that you have been on high alert ALL day as there is no such thing as childproofing, you have dealt with numerous disgusting substances, you haven’t had any adult contact or highly stimulating conversation, you have “worked” all day- we’re talking going to the bathroom with the door open or something terrible could happen to the children no-break kind of day.

Down:  Realizing that hubby is not sympathetic to your cause because he has also worked all day, even though he was able to have some meaningful conversations, feel productive, solve complex problems, make money, and go to the bathroom with the door closed without fear of immediate harm to his young children.

Fix: Don’t worry, that last rant resolves on its own as the children grow older.

To be super fair, if I were to rewrite the last “Up” bullet point from my husband’s point of view, it might read as follows:  Being so happy to come home to a home cooked meal after having worked all day, including plunging clogged toilets, clearing sewage lines, and dealing with difficult customers, knowing all the while that this hard work has allowed for my loving, caring, appreciate wife to be able to stay at home with the children.

In summary, enjoy the ups and cope with the downs.  Just remember you are in charge of each and every wonderful new day in molding the mind of your little human being.  “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You’re on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who’ll decide where to go…” (Dr. Seuss).

Wendy Knuth is the author of Moore Zombies picture books and chapter books for children.  One of her characters is a stay-at-home Mombie zombie named Mombie Moore.

Mombie Moore

art by Brian Allen

One Of The Most Perfect Gifts For A Toddler!


Everyone has heard the adage of buying presents for children only to find out they prefer the box.  Well, from experience, it is true.  So today, my good friends, I am here to tell you about one of the most cherished gifts your child will get from you:  An item to bond with, to sleep with, a source of comfort, homemade with love.  Yes, you will beam with pride when other parents ask you, “Where did you buy that?”

From me to you:  Make a pillowcase!

Back in the day, I made a Teletubbies pillowcase for my son.  He loved it – he treasured it for a couple of years.  My other son was meanwhile enjoying the store bought 101 Dalmations bed set, just so you know he wasn’t neglected.

Go to your local store where materials are sold such as WalMart or JoAnns, and you will find a whole new world of options:  Animals of all types (real and cartoony), holiday themed prints, fairies, princesses, flowers, specific sports teams, and copyrighted Disney characters.  What did I find for my boys?  Dinosaurs and construction equipment galore.  Jackpot!


Worried about your sewing skills?  Don’t be.  I’m not an expert seamstress.  Out of all the things one can sew, a pillowcase is probably one of the easiest, even if you don’t have a sewing machine.  If your work is not up to par, your child probably won’t notice.  But just in case, here is a handy tip from me to you:  Don’t sew ALL the edges together or you will be left with a pillowcase malfunction.  Handy tip #2 – buy a “travel pillow” – it is the perfect size for a toddler, and you’ll need even less material.

A yard of material is dirt cheap compared to your limited selection of pricey bed sets, and you can almost bank on the idea that toddlers don’t know that bedding should match, and really, why should it?  Where is the fun in that?  Live a little!

Alternatively, if you are “one of those people” and just can’t function without the matching set, you can take it a step further.  I actually made (er, um, yeah) dinosaur blankets.  Okay – I didn’t MAKE the blankets.  I bought really cheap blankets and then covered one side with dinosaur material and used a plain blue cheapo material on the other side.  In retrospect the plain blue material was more difficult to deal with since it was very stretchable.  Tip #3:  If sewing is not your thing – don’t buy anything too stretchy.


My dinosaur blankets each have a large seam running down the middle because often material is sold in smaller widths than can cover an adult sized blanket – did my kids notice?  Nope!  However, after a couple of weeks, one son complained of something pointy in the blanket.  Oops – it turned out I had sewn in one of the pins I had used to keep the edges together.  Tip # 4:  (I think you get the point, yuk, yuk.)

That same young man is now an older teenager.  Out of the numerous pillowcases I made for him, he still has (in his closet) what is now an old, raggedy pillow with the construction print pillowcase.  He is not willing to part with it.  It is a keepsake of his.  Oh my gosh, how worth it is that?


So pick a print, apply your skills and give the gift of a pillowcase!  Tip #5: Don’t forget to include a pillow.

Since you may not always be able to find what you are looking for at your local store, I am including some affiliate links for themed materials that are always available online:

Outer Space Fabric

Unicorns and Such

Tell me how it goes. . .


Wendy Knuth

Author of Moore Zombies picture books and chapter books


The 20 Year Old Cake, Part II – China/Platinum Anniversary


Let me tell you how things finally went down.  The old, bald guy had a bad day at work and was kind of grumpy.  He actually went grocery shopping.  While he was away, our boys & I ordered pizza.  I removed the cake which I had hidden in the refrigerator, unwrapped the aluminum foil and left it in a pile on the counter.  It was a big clue in plain sight.  It turns out the boys did know about the cake in the freezer.  I must have told them the story long ago.

So yes, there was a small slice missing.  One red candle went in the center.  I put out two presents.  Traditional rules for the 20 year anniversary say I should buy china.  More contemporary guidelines say one should buy platinum.  So I bought both.


After my initial cake blog, a friend on Facebook sent a “Happy Anniversary” Flintstones clip.  It has proven to be problematic in that I can’t get the song out of my head, even days later.

When hubby came home, the boys and I quickly helped out with the groceries, not letting him into the kitchen.  Then I waited at the computer until one of my boys said, “Now.”  He lit the candle and I pressed play on the music clip where Fred Flintstone and his buddies are singing and Barney is playing a Stoneway piano.

The Flintstones – Happy Anniversary clip

The old, bald guy walked into the kitchen and immediately lit up.  He laughed and then said “Where did you get the cake?”  I was kind of surprised.  Then he said “There’s a slice missing.”  He looked a little confused.  He was just not getting it.  I gave him a weird look, looked at the cake and then at the pile of aluminum foil, and looked back at him without saying a word.  He circled around and I saw a sudden look of recognition come over his face.

“Is that what I think it is?!”  Yes, I told him.  He laughed, and I mean hard, and then he said, “Thank God!  We can finally get rid of that thing!”  How romantic.


We both thought the cake was in remarkably good form.  The icing smelled like icing but when we touched the inside where the slice was missing, it felt really dry, like sand.  No, we didn’t eat any.

Hubby enjoyed his presents, the pizza came, and we watched our wedding video.  Our teenage boys had never seen it before.  Pretty weird to see how young everyone looked, including ourselves, and a lot of people have since passed away.  I was feeling sentimental and teary eyed here and there, but that quickly dissipated because boys will be boys and my 3 guys cracked a lot of weird jokes throughout.  Again, very romantic.

What happened to the cake?  Well, this cake is famous now.  I gave it a fresh wrapping of aluminum foil and back into the freezer it went.

Wendy Knuth, author of Moore Zombies books

The 20 Year Old Wedding Cake


The old, bald guy and I are about to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary!!!  The picture of the old ripped and torn aluminum foil wrapped thingy-a-bobby?  It is the top tier of our wedding cake, and it has been in our freezer for literally 20 years.  Read it again.

We have all heard about how you are supposed to put some of your wedding cake in the freezer and then defrost it for your one year anniversary and actually eat a bite.  Yuck.  For some reason we reluctantly participated in this tradition.  Even if it tastes great, it is very difficult mentally to cope with the one year old part.  Who came up with this silly tradition?  Perhaps it is an early test of the “in sickness or in health” part of your marriage vows with regards to food poisoning.

Let’s move on to mental health.  Where or how is mine?  For some odd reason, the cake went back into the freezer and became a point of nostalgia for me.  Years passed and my hubby would occasionally ask me when can we get rid of this cake?  We’re never going to it eat.  Well, true.  But it would be like throwing away a piece of our history.  I can’t say that we argued about it but I think he saw that it would make me sad.  He gave up asking quite some time ago.  I think he came to terms with the fact that as long as I am alive, this cake will be in the freezer.  Honestly, if he had thrown it away without my knowledge for the greater part of the last decade, I probably wouldn’t have noticed.  But, don’t tell him that.

So there I am, trying to think of some unique gift for our 20 year anniversary and I suddenly remember – the cake!!!!  I’m going to defrost and put it on the table next to his real presents.  I think he and our kids will get a kick out of it.  I’m pretty sure our boys don’t even know what that ragged aluminum foil wrapped thing is that has been in the freezer for their entire lives.  I’m not sure if they have ever heard the story behind it.  Don’t worry – the old, bald guy is not into social media so he won’t see this post until post anniversary.

There is only one problem.  I will be setting myself up for disaster.  I imagine that after a fun evening and some giggling about the ridiculousness of it all, my hubby will probably ask if we can finally throw the cake away.  It’s a dilemma.  We’ll just see how things go. . .

Wendy Knuth


Hey Zombies – Suckage Time – Your Taxes Are Due!!!


Oh my Gombie, how I hate taxes!!!  The old bald guy and I own a small personal business which means that we have to pay self employment taxes.  That means we get the privilege of paying taxes twice.

For all of you working zombies out there that roll your eyes in disgust at the chunk that went missing from your paycheck – we all know that really sucks.  But I’ll tell you something that sucks even more.  Imagine taking out your checkbook and writing a check to the government every three months.  That really, really sucks.

If you have a “normal” job, your employer pays for your social security (ouch for them), and then the government also sucks your paycheck dry for your portion of social security (ouch for you.)  That is double suckage.  When you own a small business you have to pay twice, once for yourself as a business owner, and once for yourself as an employee – basically double ouch.

Okay fine.  The rules are the rules.  So, we have to hire an accountant to figure out how much suckage we have to pay to the government.  We have no clue what said accountant is doing except that we end up with literally a book full of pages, forms, subforms and schedules as evidence that the job has been done.  At the end of it all we are grateful and give our thanks to the government for making us pay hundreds of dollars to figure out how many thousands of dollars we owe.

So here’s my thinking.  The accountant payment is a kind of a tax.  Why don’t we propose new legislation?  Any fees paid to accountants should be a direct deduction from the amount owed to the feds.  Not only could we stand up to the feds and punish them for making us go through this yearly anguish, but it also provides an incentive for them to make it less complicated.  The public will love it, and the accountants will love it.  It might even create some new loopholes – and isn’t that what taxes are all about?  That’s my two cents, folks.

Write your representatives in Congress and buy a zombie book.

Wendy Knuth, author of Moore Zombies picture books and chapter books – MooreZombies.com

Adventures of Agnes – A Back Story Of Moore Zombies: Big, Bad Wolfbag


The old bad guy and I had this dog named Agnes.  She was a short haired, brown something or other that we got from the local humane society.  When she was really worked up, her hairline that ran down the middle of her back would raise up, but backwards.  She was the friendliest dog ever, but she was also very intimidating if you were on the other side of the fence.  We got a lot of great comments on her – personality, personality, personality, Type A.

Agnes was quite often, a pain in the rear.  She was definitely an alpha female.  So much so, that she would raise her leg to go the bathroom, she wasn’t letting the males have anything on her.  I have blogged about her issues with skunks.  I almost put something into Big, Bad Wolfbag about skunks but I felt I already had enough material.  So then there was the toad thing.

One day, I heard Agnes barking her brains out in the backyard.  Yes, she was drooling and foaming at the mouth, just like in the book.  I saw this toad on the ground.  She was barking at it and almost trying to bite it but you could tell whatever slime substance was on its back was deterring her.  We put the poor toad outside of the fence and worried some about Agnes.  We have her plenty of water to drink and she turned out just fine.

There was the time when the old, bald guy and I were camping near a lake.  We saw this young boy come up over the hill.  Agnes’ ears perked up and she looked very alert.  The boy saw her and stopped in his tracks.  The old bald guy spoke out loud to himself, “Please don’t run”.  Of course, the kid turned and ran, and Agnes chased after him.  He must have been terrified.  Agnes was the kind of dog that would chase after anything that ran away from her, but luckily for humans, she wouldn’t do anything but be playful once she caught up to you.  Anyhow, we feared repercussions from angry parents so we packed up, called Agnes who dutifully came back, and we left.  A version of this is in the opening chapter of my Wolfbag book, except I changed the boy to a girl.

Another time, we were camping at Lake Pleasant, which is why I decided to include the name of this lake in the book.  Agnes loved swimming and we saw her swimming after a bird that looked like it had a broken wing.  The closer she got to the bird, the bigger her eyes became.  When she got really close, the bird flew away and Agnes turned around and swam back to shore.  Before she got out of the water the bird flew back and plopped down near Agnes and swam away again with the appearance of the broken wing.  Of course, Agnes turned back around and swam after the bird.  We were sure Agnes kept getting too close to this bird’s nest on shore.  This literally went on for at least an hour.  Yes, this is also in the book.  When I did internet searches to find birds that played the broken wing trick, I could only find a certain bird that to my recollection did not look anything like the bird that played this trick on our dog, and that is why the type of bird remains unnamed in the book.

The fishing incident in the book is completely made up and had nothing to do with Agnes.  However, there was a time when our other dog, Ed, got tangled in someone’s fishing line as he swam by.  That silly angler saw him coming and should have reeled his line in, but instead he watched the whole thing happen and then blamed us for letting our dog tangle his fishing line.  Luckily, as Ed kept swimming the line untangled on its own and we didn’t have to unhook him or anything.  We were glad because we didn’t want to deal with that dummy anymore anyhow.

I could go on and on about Agnes, and I’m sure in the future I will.  Now you know a lot of the events which inspired me came from real life and you can read all about them in my third chapter book called Moore Zombies: Big, Bad Wolfbag.

Wendy Knuth, Author of Moore Zombies picture books and chapter books