Welcome to Pat's Place

Thanks for stopping by Pat's Place. I hope you enjoy my blog.

As a writer, I will be blogging about many things that interest me. My posts will be about what I am writing and other things I'm doing. Enjoy!

Web site: http://rthrbrtn.synthasite.com

Saturday, November 21, 2009

How's That Again?

I just read an amusing blog post by Erica Vetsch telling the funny things people say to her as a writer. It reminded me of a couple of my show stoppers from people.

#1 Are you still writing?

#2 The best of all. At a church meeting a woman said, "I admire Pat's perserverence. She just keeps writing whether anyone buys it or not." At the time I was a published writer and working at a college, assisting the PR director. A little bit of writing involved there, and most of it published.

In another vein, since I'm stealing from other blogs: Writer's Digest blog suggested a blogger only blog if they have something to say. Don't waste the readers time. Say something the reader can take away. And here's the one that punched me in the gut. Blog at least twice a week. As you can see from the dates on my blog, I'm waaaaay behind.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

October? What happened to September?

Yep, it's October. Jack-O-Lanterns, Pumpkins, ghosts, skeletons, colored leaves inhabit store shelves along with Christmas decorations. South Missouri must be the most colorful place in the US in the fall. Leaves are already turning. Have you noticed?

Back to what happened to September. For me September was a whirl of bridal showers, wedding preparation, house guests and finally a beautiful wedding. My granddaughter Kristin Harbin married Michael Highfil on Sept. 19. It was a beautiful wedding and she was a beautiful bride.

It rained the whole day but family and friend inside the beautiful Harmony Baptist Church in Rogersville made is a warm and pleasant day.

All my grandchildren, except one-year-old Nathan, were in the wedding party. Nathan was an attention getter with everyone who saw him in his brown corduroy pants, striped shirt and vest. Just beginning to walk, the church was a great place to explore. Uncle Greg was happy to walk around behind him, introducing him to everyone.

My beautiful granddaughter, Jessica, was candlelighter. Her brother, Jared, was a handsome usher. Granddaughter Kim assisted her sister as Maid of Honor. Kristin declared she was the worst Maid of Honor ever, but I don't think she meant it.

Mother of the bride Dayna was busy in the dressing room with attendants dresses, along with Kristin's Aunt Jeana. Aunt Kyla and Aunt Aleta were responsible for Jessica and Olivia's hair-do's. Aunt Kyla proved helpful in keeping track of flower girl Olivia, who had not had a nap, went to bed late the night before, and was full of sugar. Aunt Kyla caught her 2 seconds before she locked herself in the bathroom.
As you can see it was a family wedding. And I have not mentioned the great members of Harmony Baptist Church and other friends who tirelessly helped with decorations and food.

The wedding went off without a hitch (that isn't a pun). Aforementioned flower girl put on a show for everyone but it is expected with the little ones isn't it?

Wedding pictures will be Facebook soon. I know I've mentioned the word beautiful too many times, but... she is my first granddaughter to get married and she was beautiful and everything was beautiful. OK, I'll shut up about beautiful.
We had a huge family breakfast on Sunday morning at the Golden Corral. All my family was there except Kristin and Mike. They had something else to do ... Oh yes, a honeymoon.

Now all the visitors have gone home. Fall is in the air and it is time for this writer to get back to work. Someone please tell me which of my projects I should start on.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Honest Scrap Award

Shirley McCann passed the Honest Scrap Award to me. To earn this reward I must pass the ward to worthy bloggers who post from the heart and list ten honest things about myself.

1. I love God and thank him for all he does for me
2. I love my family - all of them - in laws too
3. I love my friends -
4. I love writing
5. I love reading
6. I love finding relatives through genealogy.
7. I love getting published
8. I love chocolate
9. I love babies
10. I love personal emails - don't like forwards.

I pass this award on to Becky Cummings, Kaye Calkins and Barbara Huddleston

Shaping your Characters

I attended ORA on Saturday. Brenda Minton was the speaker. Her presentation was great. She is a charismatic speaker. She reminded us of many things we already knew and gave new information about markets. No matter how many conferences and meetings you attend, you always come away with something new. Brenda's comment about characters was my 'something new'.

She said your characters have a backstory. Their experiences in the past shape their view of present experiences. What a difference that makes in shaping characters in your stories. Everyone looks at things differently. Your hero or heroine will look at things differently, your minor characters will look at things differently than your hero and heroine. Forget that your characters are 'just like you'! They are not. Their backstory causes them to see and think and act differently.

The statement came to me again on Sunday morning as I began teaching a Bible Study Class of ladies my own age and older. Everyone of us had difference lives. Some were married, some widowed, some never married. Some had been seriously ill. Some had a background of Bible study. Others did not. Each person had a different view point of the Scripture I was about to teach. If I can remember that as I prepare to teach again, hopefully my teaching will be more meaningful to all.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Family Vacation II

Every experience should teach something to the participants and I want to share my learning experiences while on vacation with my family.

1. Any daughter who takes her mother on a family vacation is very brave. Add a husband and two daughters, ages 21 and 23 plus one daughter’s fiancĂ© and I’d say she is VERRRRRY BRAVE. But my daughter handled it with ease and grace. Thanks D.

2. A man who takes his mother-in-law on a family vacation deserves a medal of honor. Thanks G. for the Gluten Free snacks and for cooking every meal while we were in the cabin. Excuse me, every meal but one. Kristin did the Elliott favorite, Taco Casserole one night.

3. Men don’t need to go the bathroom as often as women. Even after drinking 2 quarts of tea and not making use of the facilities at the previous stop.

4. Above mentioned S-I-L has a messed up sense of timing.
He: “We’ll pick you up at 4:30”
Me: “Are you serious?”
He: “Yep. Serious as a heart attack.”
Me: “I can’t leave without my coffee.”
He: “Take it with you.”
Me: “I haven’t been up that early since - well – I don’t know when.”
He: “If you’re going with me – you will see the sun rise over Kansas.”
His clock didn’t improve while on vacation either.

5. Grandmas don’t know everything. In fact they don’t know anything. They don’t understand the latest music, haven’t seen the latest movie, and don’t watch Youtube.

6. Grandmas tend to embarrass grown grandchildren with stories of when they were younger.

7. Grandmas get the best seat in the van. If she rides in the very back of the van. She’ll get sick and have to barf.

8. Grandma’s short legs are not created to climb into a 12 passenger van.

9. Don’t jump out of the van and run into the t shirt store, planning to catch the van on the next go around. Because you’ll forget your glasses and won’t know what you are buying much less the size.

10. Grandmas get the best bed in the cabin. It is close to the bathroom.

11. Grandmas should not expect to visit cemeteries on vacation, even Boot Heel is off
limits. No one likes to talk about cemeteries while on vacation.

12. Sometimes Grandmas who write get very good material while on vacation.
You will be seeing some on mine soon.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Family Vacation I

I just returned from a long driving vacation with family. My daughter, her husband, their two daughters, one daughter’s fiancĂ© and me. All in a rented van, we survived nearly 4,000 miles to see the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone Nat’l Park, Mt. Rushmore, The Badlands, The Big Horn Mountains and Deadwood. It was a fantastic vacation.

The endless drive across the Nebraska prairie by car made me appreciate the sturdy pioneers who trekked across our great land to settle the west. Then they were confronted with the mountains. Though the mountains are beautiful and greater than anything they had ever seen, they must has thought, “We came this far, how are we to cross these craggy peaks?" But cross them they did, settling along the trails or traveling on toward the great Pacific Ocean.

I would have loved to hear the conversation of the Mountain Men who wandered into the Yellowstone valley of geysers and hot springs. I wish I knew how they made use of the heat. The wild animals there are fabulous even now. Think how abundant they would have been in that far away time.

Herds of antelope along the way made us anticipate what lay before us all the more. The Grand Tetons are truly grand. Snow on the high peaks and cool breezes when we stopped delighted us.

We stayed in a storybook cabin just outside Yellowstone Park. The trek into the park each day was an adventure. Will we see a bear? Will we see a mountain goat? Will we see a buffalo or is it a bison? We saw a species of every animal mentioned in the guide except a mountain goat, a wolf and a black bear. Yes, we saw a grizzly bear and he was close enough you could see him with your naked eye. The bison grazed along the road, Great herds of elk dotted the fields. A nesting eagle along the road attracted motorists who stopped to take pictures in spite of the warning signs not to stop in the road.

Old Faithful is still being faithful and spewing hundreds of feet in the air to the delight of thousands of visitors. Other geysers, waterfalls, the clear rushing rivers and the bubbling mud pots all attracted our cameras eye.

The craggy beauty of the Big Horn Mountains was a wonderful side trip. A quick trip through Deadwood made us wish we could stay and visit Boot Hill, but time was short and there were other things to see. We saw Mt. Rushmore late in the evening, while a group of High School students was getting ready to put on a concert.

It was a beautiful vacation. Stay tuned for Vacation II blog about what I learned on this vacation and if this writer found a story while vacationing.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Notes and Piles

Is there anyone as disorganized as I? Well, I'm really organized, but no one knows it - not even me.

Does anyone leave notes to themselves all over the house? Notes on my desk. Notes on my kitchen table. Notes on the calendar. Notes on the other desk. Notes in my car. If I wrote the subject of all those notes here, the list would be endless.

And piles of paper. Does it never end? I thought computers were supposed to help the paper problem. I have a pile of paper for the computer. A pile of used computer paper to recycle. A basket full of papers and notes about my Jeremiah Bible Lessons. A pile of papers about writing. A pile of papers about geneology. A box of manuscript of the suspense novel I'm working on. Another box of manscript about another novel. Well, there are about three of those.

Don't tell me to file 'em. The file cabinet is full of more papers. I don't know if I want to publish this or not. If I do you all will know how disorganized I am.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Jeremiah - Lamentations Bible Study

I am happy (and relieved) to report, I have finished the Jeremiah Bible Study. I have about 600 more words to write on the Lamentations lesson. I WILL MEET MY DEADLINE- Wahoo!!!

While the study has been somewhat depressing, one thought comes through. God disciplines His children but it is for their own good. Hebrews 12:10-11. God never turns his back on us. He is always ready to forgive and forget our sin if we ask him.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009


Just a quick note here before I get back to the 'stuff' that maketh the money. The 'want to write' list is heavy on the right side and the 'must write' list is waiting on the left side. Decisions, decisions.

Did you know there is an Ozark, Alabama. I didn't. I wonder how it got the name?

According to the recent issue of Garden and Gun magazine Moonshine is making a comeback. The article states that self distilled whisky began in the fall of 1620 when George Thorpe convinced Powhatan natives to part with a mound of corn. I wonder who tattled?

The article also stated that George Washington was the largest distiller in the colonies, producing 11, 500 gallons of corn whiskey a year at Mount Vernon. When the members of the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence, every signer was known to drink home brewed whiskey. John Hancock, being the prominent distiller in Boston.

Moonshine, sometimes known as Hooch, Mountain Dew, White Lightning, Home Brew, Bathtub Gin, Stagger and Fall, Rotgut, Firewater and Tommyhawk, seems to be thriving because law enforcement is distracted by other concerns. This article targets East Tennessee as the most 'gettable' place to find moonshine.

One man named Chuck Miller claims to make the only legal corn whiskey since George Washington. It seems he makes it, sells it to the state, they put a tax on it and sell it. He makes Virginia Lightning and Kopper Kettle that is 150 proof watered down to 100 proof. His biggest market is Japan.

I found this article interesting because I grew up the boondocks of Missouri. It was well known in our area who had a 'still.' The first airplane I ever saw was flying low over our farm. Dad said they were looking for 'stills'. They didn't find any on our farm because my parents were teetotalers.

When I attended high school in West Plains one of my teachers asked me where I lived. I told him, west of West Plains on Hway 14. He said "Oh, I know the place. Siloam Springs. They are famous for moonshine 'stills. I let him know real quick I didn't live in Silaom Springs and my family didn't make moonshine.

I'm sure ya'all really wanted to know all this. Now Back To Work.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Answers to Comments

Hey thanks you guys for reading my blog and posting questions. I have not approached the local newspaper about writing a Book Review column since I first moved here. Didn't get a reply then. Maybe they would be more receptive now.

BookLoons get their books from the authors or publicists.

The manuscript is on hold while I'm writing Jeremiah. I have written the two stories needed for Sleuth's though.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Book Reviews

Wow! I'm wordy today. Beth asked how I became a book reviewer. Several years ago, I belonged to a writer's group in Enid, OK. The newspaper editor spoke at one meeting. He said, "If you have an idea for an article or a column, send it to me." I took him up on it. I sent him a column idea called The Book Report. Always a fast, avid reader, it was easy for me to come up with reviews on new books. The newspaper received books from people wanting a review of their book. Those were usually regional books. I reviewed them and made a small name for myself, eventually writing a few features for the newspaper.

When we moved here from OK, the Enid paper thought they needed a local reviewer, so they dropped my column. I now review for Bookloons.com. I do not receive money for the few words I write, but it gets my name out there. I only read and review books sent to me through Bookloons. As you know, I sometimes say a few words about other books I'm reading. I recycle to books from Bookloons by taking them to Sleuth's or donating to the library.

Right now I'm reading Maeve Binchy's newest book Heart and Soul. She lives in Ireland and writes about Irish people. She is my daughter's favorite author. I prefer suspense myself. I do have another book review to write, Dangerously Innocent, written by a woman in Australia.

P.S. I have another student enrolled in my Write Your Life Story online course on Coursebridge.

About the mosquitoes. Snopes said Listerine didn't work. It doesn't kill the mosquitoes but it does make them fly away. When you spray it, you can see them leaving the scene. That is worth something.

Memorial Day

Memorial Day always makes me nostalgic. It reminds me of childhood when my mother made crepe paper flowers and dad cut wild flowers. We visited several cemeteries and decorated the graves of family members. It was a time to visit with people we hadn't seen in a long time.

In our community one grave always had several flowers on it. The grave belonged to a young man who was murdered and thrown into a pond. He was seen carrying a lot of money but no one knew his name. He was buried beside the pond, then later moved to the cemetery. The rocks around his neck to weigh him down were placed on top of the grave. The community placed a stone there. Most everyone who remembered him placed a flower on his grave. I wrote a story about him called One For the Boy.

A young cousin said she didn't want any plastic flowers on her grave. I doubt she has to worry about it as I believe the tradition is dying out with my generation. Years ago when my granddaughters made the usual Memorial Day trip with me, they told their friends they had to go visit dead people.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Miscellaneous Stuff

Beth commented that a Book Reviewer was sued by an author. I can see how that could happen. Some reviewers are critical and snide in their comments. I see no reason to tear down an author. If a book is bad, I'll give it a bad rating and comment as to why I think it is bad, but also add a few good words too.

On the subject of reviews, Boston Scream Pie will be posted soon on Bookloons. It is an ok book but wordy with lots of adjectives and too many characters. The authors teach writing at a community college. You would think they would know better. It will be a 2 rating.

I worked with a professor once who was in charge of student journalism students. We read a lot of bad articles and news releases. But he never tore down the student's self esteem. Just told them where they could do better. He helped me a lot in my writing also.

Beth also commented that I must be a fast reader. I am. I read a lot more books than I comment on here. I can't afford my habit so I must borrow from the library. If I don't like a book, I lay it aside. I'm too old to have to read something I don't like. ;)

Mosquitoes - ugh!. They are all over. I received an email stating that Listerine would get rid of mosquitoes. So down to Dollar General I went and bought a big bottle of Listerine. Put it in a spray bottle and sprayed away. Will let you know if it works.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Thank You For a Bad Review

Shirley commented on yesterday's post asking if I ever got hate mail for a bad review. I have not received hate mail. I usually try to be nice about a really bad book. I just posted The Two Bear Mambo. It was full of vulgar language and violence. But it is a really funny book. Wacky funny that is. I gave it a one rating. The author is Joe Lansdale. He has written quite a few books. So I guess someone likes them.

After the worst review I ever wrote, the author sent me a thank you note for reviewing his book. Go figure.

My next review book is Boston Scream Pie. I'll let you know what I think of it.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just Catchin' Up

I see I haven't blogged in a while. The time gets away. So here's a catch up about what I'm doing.

I had a super Mother's Day. There was phone calls, cards and flowers from children and grandchildren away and a delicious lunch cooked by son-in-law Greg and Granddaughter Kim. Would you believe grilled steak, baked potatoes, corn on the cob and chocolate covered strawberries for desert? I am blessed with wonderful children.

I finished the fifth lesson in Jeremiah. God said the people of Judah were stubborn. They refused to listen to the prophets and followed their own desires. Their refusal to listen would result in Judah's downfall to Babylon. They had a choice. They could follow the Commandments and have God's blessing or they could reject Him and be destroyed. We also have choices to make in everything we do? Which way? The straight and narrow way that leads to God or the broad way that leads to destruction?

I've been reading. The Two Bear Mambo review will be posted to Bookloons.com soon. I don't recommend it. The Chameleon Conspiracy is already posted on Bookloons.com is an intelligence thriller. It is a very good book but very intense.

For pleasure I picked up A Body to Die For by G.A. McKevett from the library. If you enjoy mystery and humor, this book is for you. Savannah Reid is a hefty PI and former cop. When a diet Guru's husband is found dead, Savannah is on the case. Can't resist quoting a couple of sentences from the book. "If anyone were to suggest to Gran that she was lazy or carried any excess baggage, they might just receive a skillet greased with bacon fat upside the head. Along with the corrective smack, they'd get a lecture about how 'sportin' a few extra pounds to begin with got a lot of good folks through the dark days of the Great Depression. Gran was big on stories about the Great Depression, skillet smacking, and the incalculable culinary value of fresh bacon grease." A Body to Die For is a wonderful way to forget your troubles for a while.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Preserving the Past

I am pleased to report I have a new student for my online writing course "Write Your Life Story." I first put my online course on Coursebridge.com in 2001 and have had a few students over the years. I am always happy to help someone write their life story. I think it is important to preserve the past.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

This and That Today

I was pleased at the opportunity to interview Earlene Fowler, author of "Love Mercy" via email. You will find the interview on Bookloons.com. And further pleased when the administrator at Bookloons invited me to e interview again soon. I emailed Fowler, thanking her personally for the opportunity to interview her and she answered my email!!! How about that? I find her a 'down-home' type of person and an excellent writer.

Ahh! I finished the 3rd Jeremiah Bible Study Lesson. From the 7th chapter of Jeremiah, God is displeased because the people of Judah pretend to worship Him in the temple but their hearts are not truly worshiping.

The lesson for us? How many times have you sat in church thinking about what to cook for dinner or where to eat out or how much can you get done on this your 'day off'. In the church? But only pretending?

Monday, April 13, 2009

Update on what I'm doing and what I'm reading

I just finished the new Nevada Barr novel Borderline. It is set in the Big Bend National Park in Texas. All of Barr's Anna Pigeon books are set in National Parks. Pigeon is a park ranger. In this book she is on vacation. After killing a man in self defense, her head is all messed up. Her husband Paul takes her to Big Bend to recuperate.

BUT recuperation is not to be. There is suspense from page 1 and the action never stops. There is, of course, a dead body. Then a couple more murders, an unfaithful husband, a cow named Easter. Yes, I said a cow named Easter. And a newborn baby that Anna delivers on the banks of the Rio Grande. The worst nightmare of all is, someone wants that baby dead.

OK. That is what I've finished reading. Now a peek into what I'm writing.
I've finished the second Bible Study lesson in Jeremiah based on Chapters 3 and 4. God gives the prophet Jeremiah the duty of telling the people of Judah that God is angry with their sins and the future holds destruction for the land.

God is angry because His people have turned away from Him and now worship idols. Exodus 20 quoting from the New Century Version of the Bible: "You must not have any other gods except me (v.3). And v. 4 "You must not make for yourselves an idol that looks like anything in the sky above or on the earth below or in the water below the land."

The people disobeyed God and now they would be punished.

What is the lesson for us today? We don't have idols! We don't? Yes we do! Anything we put before God is an idol. A trip to the lake on Sunday is something we put before worshiping God. If we worship material things so much that we forget that God gave them to us, they become idols. A person, a car, a job. Any of those things can become idols if we put them before God.

We do all these things, yet when we have problems, we go running to the preacher begging, "Pray for me. Pray for me." God expects faithfulness and the rewards are blessings.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What I'm Reading

I just finished a couple of books that I highly recommend. Earlene Fowler's Love Mercy is a book about relationships. A grandmother and granddaughter, An Alzheimer patient and his family. It is about the fictional community of Morro Bay, CA. Fowler's Benni Harper Mysteries are must reads but this is not a mystery. Although there is suspense in every chapter. It should be a TV show.

The second book is The Prosecution Rests. It is an anthology written by several well known mystery writers. Exceptional. I will give it away at the next Sleuth's meeting.

One Lesson Finished

I finished one lesson in Jeremiah. 2100 words. Hurrah!. I just need to finesse it a little. Will let it set for a while and reread it.

This lesson was on the first chapter of Jeremiah. It was interesting to me to see that the Lord chose Jeremiah before he was born (v.4-5). Wonder what the anti-abortionist say to that?

It was said of Esther that she was born for that particular time in history. Jeremiah also was born for a particular time in history. We might say Billy Graham was born for a particular time in history. Who has God given us today for our time in history?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Jeremiah Bible Study

I started the Jeremiah research yesterday. I thought the study would be boring as Jeremiah is known as the 'weeping prophet'. I have not found that to be true. Jeremiah was sad over the fate of Jerusalem. The country was in a time of crisis. Does that sound familiar? Jeremiah knew if the people of Jerusalem did not turn again to worshiping the one true God, the country would be destroyed. Perhaps Jeremiah has words for the USA today. Stay tuned. I'll let you know.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Thomas Jefferson Quote

"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are
willing to work and give to those who would not." Thomas Jefferson 1802

Saturday, March 21, 2009

I'm Baaaak!

Did you think I got lost searching for Sallie Bluejacket? I didn't realize it had been so long since I posted on the blog. I've been traveling, visiting children and grandchildren. When I'm with the children, all thoughts of blogging goes right out the window.

I've also had company visiting so that meant house cleaning. Ugh! I hate to clean house. I would rather be in my office communing with my computer.

Now I have little piles of work all over my workspace that must be done before I can get back to writing Murder on Tour. I need to write book reviews for The Fifteenth Letter, Romantic Notions, and Piercing the Veil. Hopefully those reviews will be up on Bookloons.com this week. I am reading The Prosecution Rests for review with Earlene Fowler's new book Love Mercy waiting in the wings. I have an opportunity to interview Ms. Fowler also for posting on Bookloon.com. That will be a first for me. I will inquire if I can also post it on this blog also. I have long admired Earlene Fowler's work.

Oh yes, way back on the corner of my desk is my taxes. I must do them but keep putting it off.

I must start writing Bible Study lessons for LifeWay in April. They will take some time to research. I will be blogging about the lessons as I write them. Then way, way back there somewhere is the genealogy that I need to enter into my computer program. All those elusive notes that must be corraled and put together like a puzzle. I often wonder if any of my children will appreciate the effort I've put into recording their geneology or if it will all be thrown out with the trash.

On a brighter note, my ornamental pear trees are blooming and the dandelions are making headway in the yard. Is spring here or do we have more cold weather coming?

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Searching for Sallie BlueJacket

Wednesday morning three intrepid explorers (intrepid sounds better than three over-the-hill wanderers) started for Oklahoma. We, Virginia, Kathy and I, were in search of Sallie Bluejacket. Virginia wrote a story about Sallie, who was a Cherokee Indian. She needed a picture to go with the story. Since Sallie is deceased, we decided the best place to look for her was in the cemetery. Sallie's maiden name being Bluejacket, where else would we look for her grave but Bluejacket, Oklahoma?

So, fearlessly into Vinita we went, turned on Route 2, then Route 25 and there it was, the town of Bluejacket. But where is the cemetery? Being women, we immediately stopped to ask for directions. A kindly senior citizen whose ancestors, no doubt, had roamed the Oklahoma hills for many years, gave us tentative directions. We all know if a man were driving we would still be wandering around the town fruitlessly searching for a cemetery.

We found the Bluejacket cemetery and plunged into the task of finding one stone among many. The wind was sharp but we were dedicated. Hey, we found it and took several pictures. The conversation went something like this: "I'll get a picture." "I want one too." "Now take a picture of me with the stone." "Oh, wait, the wind blew my hair in my eyes." "OK. I'll take another." In the process, Virginia dropped her folder containing information about Sallie and her family. The wind picked up the pages and blew them hither and yon. Virginia, in pursuit of her precious papers, gave chase. Everytime she started to pick up a page, the wind blew it a bit further. Kathy and I just stood back and laughed (and took pictures). Was the mischievious spirit of Sallie Bluejacket playing with us?

Feeling successful, we decided to look for Sallie's father's grave stone. Charles Bluejacket was a prominent Methodist minister in the area. A picture from the internet showed a white stone with a pointed top. Standing together, studying the picture, we intrepid explorers discussed among ourselves that the stone must be like that one right over there not far from us. Of course, where could it be? Could it be that stone? Now feeling rather foolish, we discerned that yes we had found Charles Bluejacket's grave stone (literally right under our noses).

The excitement over we drove back to Vinita and drove ten miles west when we only needed to go two miles west to the rustic restuarant, Cowboy Junction. The deco of Cowboy Junction is a feast for the antique lover's eye. The food was delicious. The restuarant is operated in conjunction with the Cowboy Church located in the same building.

Tired, stuffed and successful in our adventure, the intrepid explorers returned to Springfield, vowing, "That was fun. Let's do it again soon."

Monday, February 9, 2009

The Naked Archaeologist

Does anyone watch the Naked Archaeologist? Ha! Got Ya!. Really he's not naked. He makes archaeology naked (uncovered.) The show comes on at 5 p.m. Sunday on History International. His shows are proving or not that Biblical History is correct. I agree with most of what he shows but some I do not. But it is an interesting show.

Friday, February 6, 2009


This is a Rant. I warn you before you begin to read, you may not agree. That's OK. This is my place and this is my opinion.

One of my favorite shows is Bones. I read where this season Bones and Sealy will 'get it on.' Come on writers. Don't mess up a good thing. Part of the tension is Sealy and Bones disagreeing, then agreeing. Past sexual liaisons on Bones have the characters 'getting it on' in strange places and at the drop of a hat. Just an eye roll and there they are naked in bed. People, sex is not love. Sex is part of love but love is a special feeling toward one person. You want the very best for that person. You give up part of yourself for that special person. We are doing readers and viewers of TV a disservice when we portray love as only sex.

Gibbs in NCIS keeps his private life to himself. His genuine fatherly love for Abby is not sexual. It is refreshing. CSI ruined their show's image when Grissom and Sara suddenly became an item. The show began to focus on their relationship instead of the mystery of their cases. Catherine keeps her private life to herself. Thank you Catherine.

I do not care for most reality shows. Too much reality is too much information. Amazing Race has a mother and deaf son competing this season. That one I will watch.

Oh yes, one more thing - Let's not have any more characters using the urinal while 'communicating'. Yuck!!!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Taxes, groundhog day, Murder on Tour

I was just wondering - Do you think if I DON'T pay my taxes - would I get nominated to a government position? Of course, I would apologize!

Groundhog Day. Of course we'll have six more weeks of winter. It's only the first of February. We may even have seven more weeks of winter. We still have to have Easter Squall and Blackberry winter. That is my Ozarks roots coming out.

I got up enough courage to ask a couple of people to critique my novel Murder on Tour. They said yes. I always hesitate to ask for a critique. Afraid I'll get an honest one maybe.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Winter Day

Ice, Snow, Sleet, - What a day. At least the power is on. I've been working on my novel Murder on Tour. Funny thing, I'm writing along fine and then begin to question my punctuation and format. I comfort myself by thinking I'll go back and correct it later.

Two publications have asked for a picture. Naturally, I don't have a good one. I never take a good picture. Also, am not too good at emailing pictures. So tomorrow is picture day at my house, I'll be scanning and 'trying' to email.

I read a note from a friend in Virginia that she also is iced in so I guess this weather is pretty wide spread in the southern part of the U.S.

Monday, January 19, 2009


Good morning on this dreary Monday. What a wonderful day to hide in my office and write. So why am I not doing that? Procrastination. My husband said I'm afraid of success therefore I put off writing as long as there is anything else to occupy my mind and hands. What am I doing instead of writing? Answering emails, doing some genealogy research, thinking about baking and writing this blog. I think I procrastinate because writing is hard. You have to reach down deep inside yourself and come up with a readable page. That page may reveal more about you than you really want any one to know. My husband was being nice when he said I'm afraid of success. I really afraid of rejection.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Time Gets Away

Wow. Time really gets away from me. I thought January was a time I could sit back and gather my thoughts and really get some writing done. I've done some writing but not on my novel and certainly not on my blog. One of my goals was to keep my blog up to date - haven't done that. Will try to do better.

I've sent a mini mystery to Woman's World, written a contest mystery for Sleuth's Ink and I'm working on a devotional for The Sage Journal. So I have been busy.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

2008 We Hardly Knew Ye

2008 is gone and 2009 is well into our schedules. Truly I haven't written 2008 on a check yet when I should have written 2009. Whohoo - I'm doin' good.

I hate it when news broadcasts, magazines or newspapers look back on the old year. Nor am I fond of Christmas letters that recap the previous year. But as I think of 2008 a few blessings come to mind. 1. I have a new grandson born in May. After a few problems in the beginning he is doing great now. He is trying to crawl and has a cute little gummy grin that wins your heart. He is in addition to 5 other grandchildren I won't mention here - sorry guys.

2. I visited my brother in Idaho. We have not been particularly close in past years. We are as different as daylight and dark so don't always see eye to eye. But I enjoyed the visit and I think we are closer now than in a long time.

3. I enjoyed a short trip with my friend Carolyn in October. Found a bit of material for a story hopefully.

4. My son arrived home from Iraq safely and is now home with his family. We couldn't be happier.

5. I had an assignment published by LifeWay Resources this year again as I have for several years. A few contest entries and a short article accepted by Good Old Days magazine make a fair showing in the writing department. Still working on that novel though.