Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year

This year ends with no regrets. 2009 was a blast for us. The highlights would have to be our trip to Scotland and our almost move to Kentucky. We are almost in Kentucky, but not permanently. Still waiting for our house to sell.

2010 starts with surgery for my husband and probably surgery for me. We decided when we reach 65, we started falling apart. He has cataract surgery Monday, January 4 and again January 18. I have an appointment to see about mine on the 12th.

My goals for 2010 are:
1. Be a better Christian.
2. Spend more time with family.
3. Work harder on my writing.
4. Try harder to get a contract on my book and an agent to represent me.
5. Improve our new house some.

Our prayers are for our family, friends and those in the military. We pray the war will end soon with a minimum of blood shed. We also pray for our leaders that they will lead in the way God wants them to.

Right now I am almost finished doing my edit of my manuscript. When it is finished, I will continue on the second book. I would also like to write some non-fiction, but we'll see about that. I hope to finish my third book in the East Tennessee series this year. I have another book rolling around in my head when those are finished. I pray my writing improves and a contract will be in the future.

Tonight, we are going to church and sing the old year out and the new year in. I enjoy this part of the New Year. You can watch the ball drop, but I want to be with my Christian brothers and sisters. Have a Happy New year! I'll see you sometime in 2010.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Don't Tell too Much

Since I started writing, I've had a rough time wanting to tell instead of show everything going on. It's easy for a writer to just tell a story, but I want to feel the story. I'm still struggling with that, but I'm learning more each time I write and when I read other books, I learn from that also.

How do you show? Action! This morning I'm sitting at my computer in my bright green office, not my choice of color but it does wake you up. I'm listening to the dishwasher that I forgot to turn on last night. My husband is walking through the kitchen and mumbling something, not unusual. We're having company for breakfast and I'm not sure sure yet what I'm preparing, ham or tenderloin. Either will be good. Did you get a window of what's going on while I write?

When we talk, do we move you hands as I do? My husband says if you tie my hands behind me I won't be able to say a word. How do you sit down? Do you put your hand behind you and smooth your clothes in the back before you sit, or do you flop down? All that is showing what is going on.

"What's for supper!" Billie Jo asked as she ran into the house slamming the screen door behind her.

Mom lifted the lids of the pots on the stove. "There's fried chicken, masked potatoes, gravy, peas and biscuits. For dessert there's apple pie." She turned to Billie Jo with a spoon in her hand. "Hurry and wash up, supper's ready."

Billie Jo rushed to the bathroom. Why was Mom fixin' her favorite supper? Something must be going on. This time she did not throw the towel in the floor.

It takes time to think about these things. I'm so slow when I write because this doesn't come easy for me. One thing I do want is to make my WIP interesting and exciting. The more I learn the more I enjoy writing.

Monday, December 28, 2009

The Sheriff's Surrender

Last week I tried to get this on, but between my computer skills and I don't know what else, it didn't work.

The Sheriff's Surrender is a wonderful, funny book by Susan Page Davis. I thoroughly loved it and so did my husband. Yes, he likes westerns and usually reads them after I finish.

The sheriff is killed and a new sheriff is appointed. Ethan Chapman had no experience as a sheriff. Gertrude Dooley was a sharp-shooter and lived with her widowed brother. Neither Gert or Ethan want to get married.

Gert is asked to show Libby, a store owner, how to shoot and word spreads around the town. Most of the women want to learn, so the Ladies' Shooting Club is formed. The club includes rancher's wives, store owner, saloon owner and saloon girls. All of them wanted to learn to protect themselves.

When the preacher came to town, his wife joined the club also. The ladies began to get to know each other as individuals, not their name tags.

More mysterious things happen and the ladies persuade the sheriff to deputize them. They patrol the town. Gert become Trudy by the end of the book. A more feminine name and the sheriff, who would never marry, sees her in a different light.

This is a very good book to spend time in front of a fire with a quilt on a cold day. That's what I did and I enjoyed my rest. Susan is a wonderful author and I am looking forward to reading her next two about the Ladies' Shooting Club. Good job, Susan!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Internet is Great!

We are moved, part of the way, and I now have internet. I never thought I would miss it so much. Now I can connect to the rest of the world! I hope nothing important has happened since I've been away.

When we found our modem and connections, my husband had forgot to bring the power plug. I had one that fit, but it wouldn't let me connect. After calling AT&T and not realizing what the problem was, they send us a new modem with connecting cables. Bless their hearts.

Now we are connected and I can get some work done.

Most of the boxes here are unpacked. I still have my china cabinet things to unpack and a few more boxes. We have several boxes that are waiting for the "400 Mile Yard Sale" in June.

I love my kitchen. I have new appliances, except for the stove top and ovens. Yes, ovens! I have two and it is wonderful. I baked two batches of cookies at the same time. Everything else is coming around. We still have more painting to do and more things to bring up from Tennessee. Most of the furniture is here. We kept a bedroom suite and some chairs, so we will have someplace to sleep and sit. My dining room table and chairs are also there.

I'd better get busy. I have about 8 or 10 more boxes to unpack. Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Need a Mouse

Have you taken your mouse for granted? I have. I would love to have it now. It's funny the things we miss when we don't have them.

I left my laptop and my mouse in Kentucky. I thought I could get along without it. Was I mistaken!

We have taken for granted our holidays. This year will be different for us. Not only are we moving to a new house, but my husband found out a few minutes ago that he will probably have to have cataract surgery. We thought it was going to be much later, but he is having so much trouble right now that the doctor thought it will probably be sooner. We are hoping for after the new year.

Our eyesight is so important that we take it for granted. Diabetes plays a big part in your eyes. We do have a good doctor who checks our eyes regularly for any changes due to the disease. I am sure there are other diseases as well that can harm not only your eyes, but other parts of your body.

There are so many things that I am thankful for. We do have good health and we are doing better with our eating habits. We have learned to eat less and do more. That is helping to take weight off and keep us active.

As you get older and your joints hurt, it is easy to sit down and do nothing. I would suggest everyone to move around. It does help those joints and makes you more alert. My daughter read where knitting helped you to keep from having dementia or Alzheimer. I can understand when your mind is working, as it does with knitting, you would not be so prone to develop these diseases.

Start today to keep your mind and body active.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


My writing has certainly taken a back seat to this move. I did find time to review the next chapter to send to the editor, but I'm not satisfied with it yet. Maybe I can get it going when we get this truck load moved to Kentucky.

We have had an interesting two weeks. We've been to Florida to my great-niece's wedding. It was a beautiful wedding. Her brothers wore kilts and her shoes where a red plaid. So pretty under her white dress. Her youngest brother sang to her as she walked into the pavilion. It was simple and beautiful. I wish Bethany and Blake all the love and happiness in the world.
After coming back, we moved into the new house with a bed, table and chairs. I did take enough cooking utensils to cook our big breakfast for Thanksgiving. Our children then helped us paint walls and lay wood flooring. I am allergic to the dust in carpet. My bedroom could not have carpet. It is beautiful now with a rich wood floor.

Thursday we get a truck and load up as much as we can. I will drive the pick-up back and if it doesn't rain, it will be loaded as well.

It's good to be in our old house. We are having inquiries, especially about the land. The house was shown while we were in Florida, so at least we are getting some showings.

Christmas shopping has not been done yet. I am usually through by now. I'm going to get a little today and then pack. Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Has It Been That Long?

Wow! I'm embarrassed that it has been so long since I have updated my blog. Please forgive me, it will be more regular before long.

What have I been doing? Traveling and packing. This is getting old fast, but we see a light at the end of the tunnel.

It seems we have been to Kentucky about every week-end. I enjoy my children and grandchildren, but the traveling is getting to me. I am so thankful that I now have a C pap machine and I am resting much better. I don't think I could have made the trips without it.

My living room is packed except for lamps and a few items. One guest bedroom is pretty well packed also and the master bath is looking good. I need to tackle the kitchen today.

Yesterday I talked to the couple we bought the house from and they were to get the last of the things out last night. We will have keys tomorrow and can start moving our things in. First we have to paint and take down wallpaper boarders. I'm not a big wallpaper person, but I do have one I want to put up in the family room. It's more me, lighthouses.

What about my book? Well, I received a rejection letter from Bethany House. Harvest House wants me to finish editing and send another proposal. That sounded more interesting to me. At least that was not a rejection. She told me to take my time because, "unless the Lord comes first, we'll be here."

Bethany House said they did not feel they had a market of a series about Melungeon's because they are not well known. I understand that it is going to be a hard series to sell. Right now I am considering changing the series to something else. I could make it the Clinch Mountain Series or the Appalachian Mountain Series. I haven't decided yet. It could be East Tennessee Mountain Series or Tennessee Mountain Series. Any suggestions would be welcome.

For the next couple of weeks, I will be out in space somewhere. Our date to move almost completely out is December 3. Beware Kentucky, we're moving in.

Monday, November 2, 2009

The sun is shining

Last week was such a gloomy week, but today the sun shines in more ways than one. A beautiful day!

I've been working on editing my book and getting along quiet nicely, I think. My editor probably doesn't think so. I'm slow doing a self-edit. I had thought my chapters were too long, so I shortened them the last time I edited. Now they are too short, so I am combining them again. I'm easy to get turned around and this has happened several times. It slows me down when I realize I put chapters together that were in another chapter. I have a little plan now and hope I can take care of things without that happening again.

This morning the girls my husband worked with came out for breakfast and then bought several yard sale items. My husband thought another day like this and we could finance our trip to Florida to my niece's wedding later in the month. It was good to see the things leave the house. and to have a visit with friends.

I'm packing more today. We will take another pick-up truck load before long. I need to de-clutter the house and this is a good way to do it. My office needs it as does the kitchen.

While we are in Kentucky this time I will go to a meeting with a writer's group. Should be interesting.

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Sun Shines Today

The sun is shining and all's right with the world. I remember my mother saying that so many times. That's a pretty true statement today. Right this minute, the sun is shining and last night was such a good night.

Yesterday I sent a proposal to an author who had requested it. I didn't know whether she would even look at it or not, but she did. Not only did she look at it, but she called her editor, and acquisition editor for a major publisher, and told her about it. The she wrote me to send the proposal to the editor.

I came running through the house to tell my husband. He was on the phone with our minister, but I almost yelled, "I have to send it to her publisher." Everyone got into the act and they were happy for me.

This has motivated me to get more done. This morning I will be writing and this afternoon I will be packing. So much to do and such little time to do it in. I am still walking on cloud 9. I slept well, except for the couple times I woke up and realized what I had to do.

My proposals are in the hands of two major publishers. I am so happy.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Two Days in a Row

How exciting! I'm writing two days in a row! This is big news for me. I am feeling more like myself, not well, but better.

What shall I write today? It isn't easy to come up with something fresh everyday. Let's see what I can pull out of my brain.

Several things have happened, small things, but important. I found out this week that a new writers group is being started where we will be moving. The first meeting is on November 7 and I am excited about it. I hope it is something that I can become a part of when we are completely moved.

I hope I can go to the first meeting. It will also help me to get to know people in the community.

Yesterday I didn't work on my book, but I did pack. I wish I could clone myself and make possibly three of me. That's too many for some people. If I had one who would clean house, one who would cook, one who would pack, then I would have time to work on my book. It ain't gonna happen, but it is a thought.

I have plenty to do today. I'm putting a pork roast in the slow cooker for tonight. It's a wonderful recipe with ginger, lime juice, honey, Dijon mustard, garlic, onion and Worcester sauce. Good eating and I'll be busy today.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

It's not raining today!

If you read yesterday's post, you know we attended a funeral yesterday. It rained all day. Aren't funerals always sadder in the rain? There were so many people there. We waited in line for about 30-45 minutes, but it was worth it to tell the family how much we loved them. It was a beautiful tribute to a beautiful lady.

Back to reality today. Our house has been shown, but so far no offers. Today I am going to get it in better shape. I may have to go out and drum up some boxes. We have filled all of ours.

The realtor called at four o'clock Monday that someone wanted to see it at five. I had not felt good in so long, but I jumped up and between us, we got it in some shape. Don't open any drawers, they are full of everything. I did get it in better shape yesterday.

I have worked on my manuscript. Editing is a lonely job, but I must get it finished. I feel at times that my story droops. I have to keep it interesting and exciting. This is a challenge of writing.

My day will be spent today in packing, going again to the doctor and writing. Probably in that order. I want to feel better. I want to get packed and I want to write. Oh, the days of a writer.

Structure is one thing a writer has to have. Right now, mine has tumbled. The pieces need to be picked up and made right again.

Today is starting out as a beautiful day. I see sun streaking through the clouds. The trees are beautiful colors of red, orange and yellow. The evergreens are a lush green, so enjoyment is in store. I'm going to try to get a picture of my view to post tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A Tribute

Today my husband and I will travel to Elizabethton, TN to attend the funeral of the daughter of a good friend. This is a sad day for us and will bring back lots of memories.

Candy Phillips passed away Saturday. She left a husband, Tim and parents Elva and Wesley Simon. She had an older sister, Karen, a niece and a brother-in-law. We had never been around her much until this summer. I wish I had known her longer. Her parents have been friends of ours since before she was born. Time and distance enters a lot of friendships. Candy was 32.

How can I describe Candy? A true Christian in every way. She taught the Word of God to anyone who would listen. She was making an impact on homosexuals. No one was ever too small or too great for her to teach. Someone said the other day that her boss told her she would lose her job if she didn't stop teaching people the Bible.

I'll miss her although I didn't know her that well. This also brings back a lot of memories of our daughter who passed away 34 years ago at the age of six. Wesley, Elva, Jerry and I went through a lot of the same pressures during the waiting. We understand how they feel. It is terrible to lose a child, especially for a mother. You carried that child for nine months inside of you and now it is ripped away. How do you get through it? You pray to God to give you a little more strength each day.

We all think of heaven sometime or other. Today I know it is a lot happier with Candy's smiling face and wonderful personality. I know her kindness on earth is showing in Heaven. I am so thankful that God allowed us to know her and love her.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Busy Two Weeks

I didn't realize it had been so long since I had blogged. It has been busy and a lot is still going on.

Just to recap, the move is taking over more of our life. Right now we are getting ready for a yard sale. We've made several trips to Kentucky and have several more to go.

On the 17th, I went to the First Annual Christian Girls Day. It was held at Marshall County High School in Benton, KY and area churches of Christ sponsored it. It was different than Ladies Days that I had been to and it was directed to girls. The speaker was Sheila Butts and she is amazing. I felt blessed to be there with around 290 other women and girls.

On the 19th, we closed on our house in Kentucky. The owners are still there. Their house is not finished yet, but they should be out soon. Now we have two houses, no make that five houses. We still have rental property, our house in Tennessee and the house in Kentucky. A big undertaking.

On the writing front, I have sent a proposal to a publishing house. I need to send two more out today and tomorrow and start editing the remainder of my book.

On top of all this, I have been sick for three weeks. Today is a better day, but my husband is now sniffling. This is not the time for all this. I have too much to do! There is a reason, I know, but I want to feel better.

Then it doesn't get much better. We have dear friends, Wesley and Elva Simmons. Wesley is the director of Tri Cities School of Preaching in Elizabethton, Tennessee. Tuesday, their daughter had an aneurysm and passed away on Saturday. This brought back so many memories for us when our daughter passed away thirty-four years ago. The ups and downs are hard on everyone. Tomorrow we will attend her funeral. Candy Phillips was 32 years old and lives a husband, Tim. She was a precious lady, beautiful inside and out. Heaven is more beautiful now.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Still Packing

Moving is like writing a book. You think you are about through and then you find more things to pack. It's the same with writing. You think you're finished with your book and then you find out you're not as good as you think you were and you start all over again.

This happens a lot with me, in both areas. We have had a lot of side-steps in moving. We were going to have an auction to sell our personal items, antiques, junk, etc. The auctioneer thought we did not have enough to do a good sale, so that was off. Another auctioneer has not returned our call to set a date to come see what we have. So another side-step, not a step back. I can always have a yard sale, which I will probably do.

When I think I am doing so good with my writing, then I find I have more to do, or more to learn, and that is another side-step. The one thing I hate to do is proposals. I will play games all day long instead of getting it over. It is a necessary evil and I have to buckle down and get it done. That is my dilemma for today. I must get it finished.

The proposal is blocked out, but needs a little fine tuning. I even have a multi-published author who will read it. I need to get it finished. So, here I am with my second cup of coffee, with chocolate-caramel creamer, and doing everything except what I need to do most.

Okay, today is the day! I will get that proposal finished!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Back for a few days

Separating what to keep and what to sell is coming along well. We are going into the last room today and then hope to have most separated. It takes a lot of determination not to keep everything we have.

Our house is listed with a real estate agency, and we are hoping for a quick sale. I would love to be in Kentucky by cold weather. The way it feels this morning, cold weather is here. I hope to pack up more of our belongings to move today.

Thursday the auctioneer who was going to do our personal auction decided we did not have enough to sell through him. He was never optimistic when he was out here anyway. We finally decided he didn't want to do it. I did call another auctioneer Friday and he will be out this week to see what all we have. We are pulling in more things that we don't use or need. I hope we can come up with the amount he wants.

When we got started with this, I knew my book would take a second place. It has. I am in the mood to write today, but I know I will be doing other things instead. I am almost ready to do the proposals and send out to publishers. I would like to finish that before we close on the place in Kentucky.

There is a lot to do today, so I must get busy. Have a blessed day!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Friday's are always good

Friday's are always good, but Sunday's are better. Friday is always a catch-up day for me before the week-end. When my children were small, it was cleaning day. Then I had Saturday and Sunday to spend with the family.

Writing will take a back seat today. I try to write a little each day. Yesterday I edited some, but I was at a hard place and had to think a lot. That's a big deal for me, thinking. I finally sat down at the computer last night and it hit me. I wanted a funny scene and I could not get it together. All day I thought about how I would try to avoid someone as they tried to see me. Then it hit me and I have a good scene going, I think.

Sometimes when I write, I have to give it space for a while. I am sure every other writer has the same blocks at times. You have to do something else and then it hits you. There it was all the time and you couldn't see through the fog. Each time I edit my chapters, I fall in love with my book.

Okay, today is a busy day. I need to finish cleaning up my house and put things in boxes. It is harder to pack when you are dividing things to keep and to sell. Right now our sell boxes are much more than our keep boxes.

This is exciting and I am looking forward to being in our new place. I am also anxious for our place to sell. The realtor says it will sell fast, I hope and pray that it will. They won't be able to go to the Planning Commission until next month and maybe then we can get things moving.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I Feel Good!!!

I'm ready to burst out in song. "I feel good, like I knew I should," or something like that. Last night I had a sleep test with a CPAP machine. It was wonderful. I was up at 5 a.m. feeling so good. My knees are not hurting and I am rested. WOW!!!

My book is doing so good. I am so thankful for finding Sandi Rog. I can't thank God enough for sending her my way. A little help came from A.J. Hawke. Thank you A.J. for sending me her name. And yes, you have a room at our new house, just come on.

I was so encouraged at conference. I can't wait to get the tapes and hear what everyone else taught. I will have the whole conference on tape. It is so good that ACFW tapes them. I have been to conferences where only a few classes were taped. This is going to be so good. (I've used that word too many times in this blog.)

There is so much to do today and I must get busy. Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

ACFW Conference

Let me introduce you to my friend, Sandi Rog. Sandi and I roomed together in Denver. She and her family are wonderful. Sandi is beautiful inside and out. I appreciate her so much. She has taught me so much about writing and she is my biggest encourager. I hope you figured out I am the one with the grey hair.

So much happened in Denver. I am still in a cloud. The classes that I went to were awesome. Instead of being so tired, I elected to order the conference tapes and rest a little more. That did help. Sandi and I both have problems with tiring so easily. We had a lot of opportunities to really talk.

Friday afternoon, I was hostess to Deborah Raney. She is such a lovely person. Her class helped us to get ideas for books, characters names and story plots. I had never thought of some of the things she told us. In my book, I have a name of one of my husband's great's. It goes back a long way, but I don't think Susannah Cole will mind me using her name.

Later that same day I had an interview with Rebecca Germany with Barbour Publishing. It has always been my dream to publish with Barbour. I read their books constantly. It was a very good interview and I have to send them a proposal and the first three chapters.

Saturday morning I met with Tamala Hancock Murray. She is an agent that I would love to have represent me. We seemed to click and I was impressed with her so much. She asked for my full manuscript. I almost turned flips in the elevator.

Saturday afternoon I saw Charlene Patterson in the hallway. Charlene is with Bethany House and that is another pub company I would love to publish my book. I had talked to Charlene about a year ago, but things had come up and I had not sent her my proposal. She seemed to remember what I wrote and said to send it on. She is so sweet.

So, now you know why I flew the plane home. I will be working on my proposal either today or tomorrow. Sandi is editing the third chapter for me now. We were both so excited.

Going into the conference, I felt so depressed. I felt my book would never be published and I was almost ready to give up. Now I am full of excitement and ready to take the plunge into publishing. The excitement of publishing and moving is really big for me. Tonight I have a sleep test with the CPAP machine. I am excited about it also. We also set a date for the auction of our personal property. We not taking everything we own to Kentucky. We will have the auction on October 31. Come if you can.

My day is going smoothly, so I must get going. Have a wonderful day.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Back from Conference

The ACFW conference in Denver was wonderful. I renewed so many friendships and met so many wonderful writers. Also, a few good things happened to me. I would rather not talk about them until I know more for sure. I will tell you I was asked for a full manuscript and two publishers wanted proposals. That is really good.

Debbie Macomber was the key note speaker and she was so good. I learned not to give up, even if someone tells you your book is trash. So far I have not been told that.

I met several writers and authors that I had met at Blue Ridge Mountain Christian Writers and October Fest. Then I made new friends, one in particular has asked me out to lunch when we are moved. It was a wonderful experience.

The flights coming and going were both bumpy. The weather did not cooperate with me this time. Coming from Atlanta to Tri Cities was extremely bumpy. We were in clouds most of the way both times. I did meet some wonderful people in the airport and on the plane.

It is good to be home and now I have some writing to do and packing and selling a house. It will be busy for the next few weeks. I won't have many spare moments. My bed felt so good last night!

Everyone have a wonderful day.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Watermelons and Other Things

Last year my husband raised a fifty pound watermelon in our yard. It's really a strip of flower bed, but somewhere through the years, seeds have been spit out in that area. Each year we have volunteer watermelons come up. This year so far we have pulled a 53.5 pound one and then the BIG ONE. My husband pulled the largest one yesterday and weighed it. It weighed 65 pounds! That is the biggest watermelon I have ever seen.

The children are coming home this week-end. We will have plenty of watermelon for them to eat. I've never tried watermelon pancakes, but they may be good. I'll try to get a picture of this whopper on in a few days.

The surveyors were out yesterday to survey the farm. I'm anxious to get a printout of it. At least there is progress going on. I'll start packing more after Labor Day. Right now I am packing what we don't need at this time. It is hard to decide what you will need.

I've sent the second chapter of my book to be edited. It is a short chapter and I may need to add more to it. I also made shuttle reservations in Denver to be picked up at the airport and again when I leave at the hotel. One less thing to worry about.

I'm cleaning again today and packing as I go. Next week, I will be packing more. I'm anxious to move and start a new adventure.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Finally, the final edit is finished for the first chapter on Callie's Mountain. It has been a long time and I now feel good about the first chapter. Sandi Rog has been a big help. I know she gets tired of me making the same mistakes over and over, but I am learning. I think the next chapter will be much better.

This has been struggle. I have worked on that first chapter for a year. The editor I had then changed so much that it was no longer my book. It had her voice instead of mine. I am so thankful that I found Sandi. She understands me and I can talk to her whenever I want to. That helps when I have a question.

Most of our books are packed. We are both packrats when it comes to books. I still have a few out that I have not read yet, but they will be packed away in the next month.

It's hard to believe that I will be flying out to Denver two weeks from Thursday. I am getting very excited about seeing so many of my friends that I haven't seen for a year. Then I am anxious to make new friends. A friend of mine said, "Strangers are friends you haven't met yet." I agree. I have written to so many of the ACFW people and now I will get to meet them.

I am making the last run of spaghetti sauce from our tomatoes. They are almost gone. The Lord has blessed us with a good garden this year. I admit, I complained. I would cringe when another bucket of beans entered the house. We will eat good this winter.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Another Crazy Day

Today will prove to be another crazy day. Last night my husband resigned from work and is now retired! I know we will both feel so much better. Money may be a little tight for a while, but we will adjust. We will also get more packing accomplished.

Today we meet with the Realtors who will be listing our place. I didn't sleep much last night worrying about this meeting. I really don't know why, I've been in the business and I know nothing to fear about it. I couldn't fall asleep long enough to rest well. This will change today. I feel confident about our Realtors. They are honest people. The surveyor will meet with also about dividing the farm in lots. There are so many beautiful building spots and we want to make the best choice for buyers.

We are keeping a couple of acres with the best building spot and the most wonderful view. The children have talked about a vacation home, which would be nice to have a little shack on top of the hill to look at the mountains each day.

Finally, I feel confident about my book. I had been discouraged lately. One year editing three chapters is a little much. My new editor is very encouraging and we have my voice back in it. Callie becomes the sweet, stubborn, determined girl she was in the beginning. I want to do more to chapter two today.

It's rainy here. A good day to get some work done with the packing and the book. I'm excited. Did I say that yesterday?

Thursday, August 27, 2009


This morning as I sit at my desk I hear a train in the distance. Most of my life, I have lived close to a railroad track. Growing up I have memories of watching the train twice a day. In my very early years, I can remember a coach car. People would ride to town and back and I can still remember it stopping to let people off.

As time went on our little train station started it's demise. We first lost the turn around. The engine would head into it and mules would turn it around where it would be heading out. I have a faint memory of my grandfather taking me to see that event.

I guess I have always loved trains, the noise of the rumble of the wheels on the tracks, the whistle to remind anyone on the tracks to step off and the sound in a distance of a soothing sound.

This is one sound I will miss. It has put me to sleep many a night and sometimes kept me up. When our daughter passed away, the engineer did not blow the whistle in front of the house to show respect. I doubt if I will ever forget that.

I also remember a night spent in Arizona where the track was right behind the motel. Each time the train went through, the beds shook. I felt like I was in the Lucy segment where she, Desi. Fred and Ethel were being shaken across the floor when the train came through. I don't think we slept much that night, but the air conditioner was so loud that it drowned out the noise of the train. After a while, the shaking put you to sleep.

Change is what makes up our life. Whether it is moving, or living where you are. There is always change. You can do two things with change. You can never forget what happened and live in remorse all of your life or you can accept it as an adventure and enjoy it to the fullest.

Monday, August 24, 2009


This should be writing news, but it isn't. It is more on the personal side.

We found a house with four acres last week. Made an offer and the sellers agreed on the price. We hope to be living in Benton, Kentucky before Thanksgiving.

We love the house. Four bedrooms, three baths, large living room, kitchen, family room and a mud room. There is a large pantry with shelves on all four sides. I found more closets than I have ever seen. We're about seven miles from our son and his family. The whole four acres are level. My husband is excited about that. No hills to worry about.

We are very pleased to be close to family. Our daughter is a two hour drive away, so we will be seeing more of them. I'm more excited about becoming a real grandmother. We can have tea parties all the time. It is exciting.

Now the problem is selling our place. We told one of our renter's this morning. I hated to tell them we were leaving. They are good renters. They cried and I cried. They are a sweet couple and I feel like they are part of our family. That will be the hardest part.
Yesterday, my husband made the announcement at church. We had told our closest friends before we left for Kentucky last week. Between Bible Study and Worship, one lady came up to me with tears in her eyes. Another young lady I had taught, couldn't talk to me without crying. I know we will miss these good people, but this is what we need to do.

I'm going to miss the mountains. I have such a beautiful view of hills and fog rising from the river. That is the highlight of my morning. I love to look at the hills and mountains.

Needless to say, I have much to do today. The realtor will be here today to list our place. My house is a mess, but that's all right. It will probably be a mess for a long time. I can't express what this move means to me. I am excited to spoil my grandchildren.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Having problems

This is weird. Since I crashed my computer about a month ago, I can't save Blogspot to my favorites. I try each time I do a blog and it just won't work. Modern technology? Probably is and then it could be me.

I'm very excited the way my book is going. We call it a WIP, Work In Progress. That poor book has been in more progress than the sailing of the Mayflower. I have written and re-written until I am blue in the face. I think it will be working out now. My editor wants me to finish it and I do too. Thanks, Sandi.

We think we have found some property we like. Our wonderful daughter-in-law looked at it yesterday and took pictures. Her pictures are a lot better than the realtor's. It has storage which is important. She said a "huge" pantry. I've never had a huge pantry.

I'm going to look at more on the internet today and tomorrow. There may be something I have overlooked.

I'm still cleaning out drawers. I many pack away some books today. I hate to start packing right now, but it will probably work out best. Plenty to do today and tomorrow. Have a wonderful day.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I've Been Slack

There are several who read this blog daily. I'm afraid my mind has been on other things lately, but I am trying to get back on track.

I've been correcting my manuscript, which is a slow process. I like the way it is going. I should have an interview with Callie and Jacob before long. They are such a sweet and funny couple. Maybe if I start one in the beginning of the book and introduce everyone to them and then one later on in about the middle of the book. Never one at the ending. I don't want to spoil anyone who will not buy the book when it is published.

We have three watermelons in our front yard this year. They are big. They come up every year and we don't plant them. Last year we had one that weighed fifty pounds. This year I think they will each be more. The rain we are having is helping them grow bigger.

I've been looking on the internet for houses in Benton, Kentucky. There are two that interests us. Both are neat. One has a garage behind the house and is on four lots in a subdivision. The other is four acres with a pond, machinery shed and workshop. The price is right on both of them. They are both in the same area and not far from my son's house.

We're waiting on our realtor to get back with us about our property. We have also been throwing away, shredding and cleaning up. I'm making a notebook for the buyer. We have kept all of our manuals with our appliances. That makes it easier for them. It's getting exciting.

I have no doubt that this is the best decision for us. Being close to both of our children is important to us.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Change is always good, or so I think. We grow with changes and I sure hope I start growing.

The change in my writing is the change of editors. I have hired a new editor and I love her so much. She has finaled in the Genesis at ACFW. I have read some of her work and I am impressed. Sandi Rog is a friend and a sister in Christ. We are rooming together at conference. I think I have said that before.

Lately, I have been very discouraged with my writing. I have been very busy on the home front also. We have been blessed with a wonderful garden and I have canned and frozen food almost continually. Today we are eating out of the garden with green beans, okra and corn. Sounds like a wonderful lunch.

I've said before, I think, that we are taking a big step in our lives as well. As much as I love Tennessee and the area where I live, it is time to take a step forward. Our children live in Nashville and the Western Kentucky area and that is from four to seven hours away from us. We are not getting any younger and I am having a lot of joint problems. We are not big city people, therefore we decided not to move to Nashville. We are planning to move to Benton, KY, probably in the next year.

This is a big change for me. I have lived on this farm most of my life. I am the sixth generation to own it. That is a big step, but this is land and my memories go with me. I am anxious to be close to my grandchildren. Even Nashville is closer than where we are now, so we should see our daughter and granddaughter more often. We can always drive to Nashville and they live on the east side, which is good.

We had a realtor come out and look yesterday. They seem optimistic about the sell of our property. We have a lot to do getting ready for the sale. My parents left me a lot of junk to get rid of. Some of it will sell and some of it will not.

I am definitely writing today. I am finally excited to write and I think I have played with this book long enough. It needs to have final stamped on it.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Finding time to write

It is so hard to find time to write each day. With summer and all the extra chores, it is even worse. So I have a plan.

When I have to sit down to rest, I write. I get a little in each day. The only problem is when I sit down to write, I get sleepy. My sleep apnea test is in two weeks. I could have had it earlier, but I was in Nashville when they called. I would love for them to call today and I could get some help sooner. My son-in-law tells me I will feel so much better.

I'm waiting right now on the editor I hired to get some chapters back to me. I have tried to do what she was doing in the following chapters, but I don't think I am a success. I do not wait well. I am not a patient person.

At this rate, I will be working on the same book for ten years and I don't want that. On top of all this, we have decided to move closer to our children. The realtor comes tomorrow to look at the property. This is stressing me some.

It is hard to leave where you grew up. My family has lived on this property for over 150 years. That's a long time. I know we need to do what we feel is best. Property is not that important to me and I am willing to do it.

The exciting part is making new friends. Almost like starting over. Our son has offered us a house he and his wife have as a rental. We are trying to decide whether we want our own house or rent. It is a hard decision, but we do have time to think about it.

That's all my woes for today. I'm ready to get busy and have a wonderful day.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Maybe Finally

Yesterday I tried to write three times. Each time I hit something and my blog was gone. Trying to get it right today.

Friday night I had a rough night. I think I slept three hours. I'm looking forward to the sleep apnea test in a couple of weeks. Maybe they can help me sleep.

During this sleepless night, I started thinking about a book I have had in my head since we were in Scotland. I wondered how hard it would be to write in first person. I tried it Saturday morning and it was much better than I thought. This novel will be in first person, a real change for me.

We have guests this week. My son-in-law and his dog are here to work on the room. The dog is entertaining our dog, so that's okay. We bought flooring yesterday and it is beautiful. I would never go back to carpet. I love the hardwood. My allergies are so much better with it. Everything is coming along fine. I am anxious to get my clothes and my husband's clothes moved in.

I think I may be able to write today. I do need to clean up my house, but I have someone helping me tomorrow, so that will help me. If I can straighten up today, she won't have much to do tomorrow.

I'd better get busy. It seems like it is going to be warm here.

Friday, July 31, 2009

We are so blessed

I am so blessed to be able to hear the rain pour down on my house. There are no leaks and I am dry even though it is raining buckets outside.

I am so blessed to have beans. This year we have an abundance of beans and last year we had very few. There are so many more in the garden. If we run out of other food, we will have green beans. I complain about having to can so much, but in the winter I am so thankful I can open a can of home grown green beans. They are so good.

I am blessed with a loving family. I see other families in so much turmoil and I thank God that mine is not like that. My husband, children, son and daughter-in-law, and grandchildren are one in a million. They warm my heart in so many ways. I thank God everyday that I am so blessed.

I am blessed to live in a free country. I wonder how long it will be free, but right now it is. How do we keep it free? Contact your senators and representatives and tell them you want the freedoms we have to continue. Don't take our freedom to choose away from us. Let us worship when and where we want to. I am concerned that we will not have these freedoms forever.

I am blessed to have a loving God who cares for me. I am blessed to be able to pray to Him and confide in Him. We need to be stronger Christians by studying the Bible and worshiping as we should.

I am so blessed to have this day. My prayer is that I will use it to the best of my ability and honor God in the process.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Menu for Romance

Menu for Romance was written by Kaye Dacus. Kaye has a very winning way to steal your heart with her characters. Her light-hearted writing makes this one book I could not put down until it was finished.

The story involves a family, the Guidry Family, who own an event business. The chef is Major O'Hara and of course he is in love with one of the family members, Meredith Guidry. They are a very tight-knit family and as most families, knows what is going on with everyone. You will laugh with the family and love every minute of it.

Kaye is a very charming person. She is an accomplished author with several books on the shelves now and more coming soon. I look forward to reading more of her books. I had lunch with her recently. She encouraged me to write more. Thanks Kaye for this charming book.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

It's Been a Long Time

Well, have I been traveling? Not in distance so much, but time spent away from home and there is always a story to tell.

First vacation was at Opryland Hotel in Nashville, TN. Luxury is the key word. It was very luxurious. My cousin teaches at Oakland City University in Oakland City, IN and she won a $750 gift to Opryland. You may think that was easy to spend there, but it was hard to spend that much money.

We walked all over the hotel trying to find where we came in. We finally found the way out when we left and we had to asked someone. It is so large and you go from one area to another and the greenery is lush and beautiful. I did speak to one of the gardeners about raising orchids. He said I probably loved mine to death. I am anxious to try to grow one like he said to do. They need lots of air and little water.

We rode on the river through the hotel. That was fun. So many beautiful trees and waterfalls. It was so nice to spend a couple of nights in that famous hotel. No, we did not see any country music stars. We did have a wonderful time.

We arrived back at my house on Thursday afternoon and I began canning beans and doing laundry. I packed on Friday and picked my husband up at work on Saturday morning. We headed to Kentucky to visit my son and his family.

My grandchildren are the sweetest in the world. Lots of hugs and kisses were received when we got to their house. We went to church with them on Sunday morning and afternoon. Sunday night we went to Paducah to the area wide gospel meeting. Dan Winkler was the speaker and he was wonderful.

You may remember the Winkler's when their son Matthew was killed by his wife. The Winkler family has been an inspiration to all of us. I enjoyed his sermon very much and there were over 1200 in the audience. The singing was awesome.

Yesterday, our oldest grandson had his tonsils and adenoids removed. He did very well and was eating yesterday afternoon. I know he will be fine. The doctor told them his adenoids were the biggest he had ever seen. When Chet came in the house yesterday, he said, "I can breath through my nose." I had realized how much trouble he had lately breathing. He will do much better now.

I'm home now and a lot to do. I have neglected my book for two weeks and I am ready to get started back on editing. I've enjoyed the last two weeks, but I am tired of luxury.