2017 Something New: Books for Christmas

    Books make great Christmas presents. I know because I read them, and others do to. I grew up happy in the library.  My sisters and I would walk the few blocks to the old Carnegie library in Enid during the summer and load up with as many books as our arms could hold (or the library would let us check out at one time). There was just something about the smell of ink on paper and the book in my hand that made me happy.  I was transported to another world.

When my kids were born, I read bedtime stories to them and we curled up with books together on the couch.  They especially liked fantasy.  I remember when they received their Weekly Reader order form we’d pour over it and buy as many as I could afford.  Even before they could read all of them by themselves, I would read the story to them.  My son had a favorite he memorized before he was old enough to read and he would “read it to us” at bedtime.  Somewhere I still have a recording of that on an old cassette tape.  It is a treasure I wouldn’t trade for the world.

My daughter loved the Bunnicula books and would buy them at school and I’d read them to the kids as I fixed dinner because they were so excited they couldn’t wait until bed time.

The first book I wrote debuted in a hotel room with my grandson.  We took him and our daughter to the Grand Canyon and I made sure the manuscript was finished and printed.  I placed it in a three-ring binder and read a chapter or two to him each night making sure we were done before the trip was over.  I may have loved that more than he did.

This year when you are starting your Christmas shopping be sure to include books for your loved ones.  They are a treasure for the giver and receiver.  They are a gift that you can share and create memories.  And if you love it, be sure to leave the author a review.

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2017 Something New: Foodfic

    Check out the website of Shelley Workinger’s Foodfic blog! But what are they eating? We discuss food after the apocalypse.




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2017 Something New: Out with the Old!

    I’m not getting any younger.  I don’t know who is, but it is becoming obvious that life is getting shorter and not longer.  No, I’m not sick, but my house is cluttered with things I don’t use and maybe never needed.  I cleaned out my parent’s house when they died, and I know what a chore it is.  My children will someday be faced with the same thing.  With that in mind, I’m beginning to clear out the clutter. My house is large and that only makes the problem bigger. I can and do stuff things in closets, attic and garage that are no longer needed.

Next year my blogs will center around cleaning out my life; physically, emotionally and spiritually.  It needs to be done.

Yesterday I helped a friend with a yard sale.  She is clearing out too. I took some of my own things I didn’t need and added them to her piles.  It was cold and foggy in Enid until after noon.  We sat on the lawn chairs wrapped in blankets drinking coffee waiting on just the right person for just the right item.  We had two carloads of people on a scavenger hunt.  They were thrilled at the stuff we had to sell!  It was just what they were looking for!  One man’s junk is another man’s treasure.

The crowds weren’t huge, but she got rid of a lot of stuff and we bagged the rest up for donation to a local thrift store.  They always welcome the items and will pick up. That was a good thing for us.

But yesterday was good for me.  I cleaned out some things and it made me look at the unnecessary stuff in my house.  I will continue to clean out.  It has me in a cleaning mood.

I still have not finished winterizing the front flower bed and winter is coming.

I’m clearing! (and burning calories).

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An #interview with author Peggy Chambers

Check out Peggy Jaeger’s website where I guest blog today! Thank you, Peggy.

Peggy Jaeger

 I’ve recently met a new author to me and thought I’d introduce her to all of you as well. Say hello to writer Peggy Chambers. Peggy’s got a new release out and she “stopped by”the other day to be grilled by yours truly. Sit back and find out more about this lovely author.

Peggy Chambers: The Writer

  1. What drives you to write? I began to write when my parents became ill. It was a way to get thoughts and feelings down on paper. Now, I feel compelled to write to get the stories out of my head and on paper. I think I’ll write until I can no longer hold a pencil or open a lap top.
  2. What genre(s) of Romance do you write, and why? I write romantic suspense. I am not attracted to romance only books. I need an underlying mystery or suspense to hold…

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2017 Something New: It’s Autumn Again!

    Fall is upon us.  The temperatures fell this week and my basil and cannas are worse for wear.  I made pesto at the last minute to save as much basil as possible and I have faith the cannas will be back in the spring. I have a great Chicken Caprese recipe to try out tonight.  Cool weather makes me want to cook – and eat. So, I must exercise more to counter act the inevitable.

It is a time when we tie up loose ends of the growing season and plan for next year.  We snuggle down and do indoor projects or put on woolen sweaters and brave the cold.  I still plan to walk the dog even if it is cold. (my husband says it is cool).

I had a very successful book signing yesterday at the Enid Public Library promoting my latest Return to Glome’s Valley and now I’m back working on my current work in progress.

I purchased the Halloween candy this week and paid way too much.  I know my neighborhood and even with a 30% chance of rain, I’m sure the goblins will be out in force.

And that means the holidays are right around the corner. I think my days of hosting the big Thanksgiving Feast are over, and that is okay.  I’ve worked hard enough, and it is time for the next generation to take over.  I will bake pies and vegetable casseroles and show up at the correct time.

My friend is having a garage sale next weekend and I’m helping prepare for that.  It is a good opportunity for me to clean out some items I don’t need and maybe someone else does. I will be working at the sale next weekend and making a big pot of vegetable soup to help keep us warm (here I go thinking of cooking again).

Fall is a time of transition – a time to slow down and rest as nature intended.  So why do I feel energized? I think I’ll make a banana bread today.

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2017 Something New: Something Old

    I viewed the original manuscript typed by Dr. Angie Debo for And Still the Waters Run at the OSU library this week.  It was her most controversial book and almost not published because of the content.

I spent Friday in Stillwater at OSU with friends and fans of Angie DeBo.  The One Book, One Community program through Oklahoma libraries had two tours of the Edmon Low Library where Angie Debo once worked.  A small group of people lead by Dr. Karen Neurohr toured the library.  We were led to the map library where she first worked and were privy to maps of the Oklahoma Territories, Indian Territories, Railroad maps and topographical maps that she once filed and kept for anyone needing research.  

The Edmon Low library has a room dedicated to Oklahoma’s greatest historian with furniture from her home and first edition books written by her.  

But the greatest gift I received that day was to look and – almost touch – the original manuscript for her greatest book.  In the basement of the library sits a tiny nook with boxes upon boxes of Dr. Debo’s work in file folders as she arranged it.  The curator pulled out one chapter – typed – with her hand-written edits and my mind flew to how the author wrote.  Today, I  write directly into the computer and then edit later by moving paragraphs, deleting scenes, running through spell checker and then giving it to my critique group to read.  That is the only time I print out my manuscripts, three pages at a time, to be marked on, given back to me and then tossed into the recycle box after changes are made to the computer document. She first, hand-wrote the document, typed it, edited it, typed it again and then sent it to a publisher.

As an author, I was amazed at the work. I was in the presence of greatness and I was awed.

Thank you Dr. Debo for all the research and writing you did about the people of the State of Oklahoma.

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2017 Something New: Return to Glome’s Valley

    Warm afternoons turned into cool mornings in the forests of southeast Oklahoma last weekend.  But we are Vikings.  We can take it! The storms overnight turned over a few tents – but the damage was minimal.  

My newest release Return to Glome’s Valley debuted in the park where the story is set last weekend and it was a great success!  The towering pine trees provided shade and a bed of needles on the ground as the Celtic bands played and vendors sold their wares.  I smiled at an older couple lunching under the pavilion as they shared a local bottle of wine with their food.  

Royal Gauntlet Birds of Prey put on a show twice a day with performances by the birds themselves.  We all learned about hawks, falcons, several different types of owl and how they live.  They are rescued when injured and then placed back into the wild when they are ready.  

It is a beautiful time of year to visit the forest and the Heavener Runestone Park.  It is a magical setting and a pristine forest.  The Talimena Drive is a short distance away and there is camping, balloon festivals and tons of family fun this time of year.  Check it out and see if you believe Vikings were in Oklahoma before Columbus.

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