Dad And Amelia: Conclusion

Valuable time ticked by as Dad fiddled with the plane’s flight instruments. When he’d finished tapping and adjusting every device in the cockpit, he contacted the tower on the squawky radio and we were told to proceed to the runway. With my heart beating like a hummingbird’s, I looked over at Dad. He appeared fully in control as man and machine became one. I still think of him this way, Helios the sun god. And I was to accompany him ...

Weekly Photo Challenge: Comfort…

“Comfort was allowed to come to them, rare, welcome, unsought: a gift like joy.” Ursula K. LeGuin Weekly Photo Challenge: Comfort... Cozy room, soft pillows, lights, fun... Weekly Photo Challenge: Comfort... Walking in shoes that fit... these are Janet Jackson's not mine. Weekly Photo Challenge: Comfort... Crepes, fine wine, good conversation in a tiny cafe... When I think of the word ’comfort,’ what usually comes to mind is comfort foods, warm blankets, soft pillows, and cute babies, pets or animals enjoying the protection or shelter ...

Cool Places to see Flowers: Floriade

While it is fall everywhere else, Australia is celebrating their spring. Floriade, which means “to design with flowers” in Latin,  is a month long flower festival dedicated to showcasing one million flowers in bloom. Floriade is usually held from mid-September to early October. Photo Credit: floriadeaustralia.com Photo credit: floriadeaustralia.com While many different flowers are planted at the gardens including irises, daffodils, hyacinths, violas and chrysanthemums, tulips continue to win hearts. Visitors can look forward to 78 different varieties of tulips. There will be ...

Autumn: Ten Reasons Fall Simply Rocks…

“In the garden, Autumn is, indeed the crowning glory of the year, bringing us the fruition of months of thought and care and toil. And at no season, safe perhaps in Daffodil time, do we get such superb color effects as from August to November.” Rose G. Kingsley Autumn: Japanese Maple in full fall by Melissa Farlow Autumn: In Central Park by Melissa Farlow Nothing beats living in a region that has and celebrates the changing seasons. Here on the east coast, our seasons ...

Fun Flower Vases!

Flowers and vases go hand in hand, like ice cream and ice cream cones! All cut flowers need vases, so why not choose one that has a bit of personality? Vases don’t have to be boring. There are so many shapes, sizes and colours to choose from, as you can see above. Add some fun and whimsy to your decor! My favourite one is the balloon vase. It’s fun and functional. Just fill the balloon with water and add your flower(s). ...

12 Uses for Sunflower

The bright and cheerful sunflower, one of the most popular summer flowers, is one of the most versatile plants in the world. Gardeners love them because they are very easy to grow, low maintenance and quick growing. There are many different varieties to choose from, ranging in assorted colours, sizes and forms. Besides brightening up someone’s day, the sunflower is considered to be a major global cash crop! All parts of the plant, including seeds, stalk and petals, are useful in ...

On Fiction: Six Stories in Six Words – Honoring Hemingway

“All good books have one thing in common – they are truer than if they had really happened.” Ernest Hemingway On Fiction: Six Stories in Six Words - Honoring Hemingway... The Old House For Rent, Old House, Rarely Occupied… On Fiction: Six Stories in Six Words - Honoring Hemingway... Doors of Paradise... Happiness, Met Me, At the Door… “The shortest answer is doing the thing.” Ernest Hemingway On Fiction: Six Stories in Six Words - Honoring Hemingway... Timbuktu home One Day, We Met, In Timbuktu… On Fiction: Six Stories in Six Words - Honoring ...

Weekly Photo Challenge: Another Look At Winter…

“Winter lingered so long in the lap of Spring that it occasioned a great deal of talk.” Bill Nye Weekly Photo Challenge: Another Look At Winter... Weekly Photo Challenge: Another Look At Winter... Weekly Photo Challenge: Another Look At Winter... Weekly Photo Challenge: Another Look At Winter... To Winter  – Claude McKay Stay, season of calm love and soulful snows! There is a subtle sweetness in the sun, The ripples on the stream’s breast gaily run, The wind more boisterously by me blows, And each succeeding day now longer grows. The ...

12 Rules for Every Family

Every Friday and Saturday, there's an Amish farmers' market that occupies a large storefront at a local plaza near our home.  We visit a couple times a month to shop for produce and other goods. During a recent tour of homespun products from the residents of Lancaster County, PA we saw this sign titled "Family Rules" that my wife and I loved - it's pictured here as it's currently hanging in our home. Just in case the image quality isn't that great ...

Teen-trepreneur: Help Your Teen Earn Some Cash

With the economy limping towards recovery and unemployment rates still high, the teen population is finding it harder and harder to find work because adults are competing for the same minimum wage jobs. But there’s an alternative for your teen—starting a micro business. What is a micro business? It is a very small, one-person business that you can start easily and quickly with what you already know or own. Students can spend as much time running a micro business as ...

Random Thoughts on True Beauty

"The best part of beauty is that which no picture can express." ~Francis Bacon – philosopher "I love the confidence that makeup gives me." ~Tyra Banks – international super model The two quotes above capture the spectrum of physical, human beauty. The first alludes to a beauty that transcends physical expression, while the second implies a beauty that relies on an external facade to build up internal attributes. The first is true beauty, the second is false. The first is inspiring, the second is actually quite ...

My Guest Post on ProBlogger Today…

I’ve got a guest post today on one of the most popular blogging sites on the web – ProBlogger.  My piece addresses the topic of writing to deadlines. This guest post is by Tor Constantino of Thedailyretort.com. The old cliché, “time is money” is particularly true for any professional writer—especially when you’re on deadline. The consequences of missing deadlines are lost money, work, and credibility. As a former journalist (a.k.a hourly deadline writer) for more than a decade, I know that deadline writing is ...

A Vital Mission

I’m heading up to MA for a spell. I have a vital mission—a delicate assignment appointed to me by the angels and I’m certain that all of heaven will be watching and cheering. And that’s how it should be—packed stands of roaring fans, cheering on brave souls with holes in their shoes. I grew up in MA, and each time I return I feel I’m on an archeological dig, searching for familial clues, finding bits and pieces of evidence scattered like ...

Funny Video Exposes 5 News Shortfalls

I was a print and broadcast reporter for more than 10 years, and I’ve been in public relations (PR) for the past 13 years since leaving the news business. This video stunt below, was instigated and assembled by the staff at the Conan O’Brien Show.  It demonstrates several glaring problems with the current methods of news gathering in local TV markets across the country. The video is wickedly funny, but as a former reporter – it’s equally sad because it’s a scathing ...

Searching for Magic

As I rode the night train up the east coast to North Carolina I was definitely a stranger in a strange land. I felt a little like an actor in a foreign film, (Europeans are always riding trains) and I was tempted to re-invent myself, become Lily Ormond, a sulky poet with an obsession for gum drops, or Julia Van Helsing, the wife of a mad doctor escaping a nightmarish marriage. I decided to remain a struggling American author breaking ...

Sepia Silence

I tried to write a blog but all I found was rain and silence. I drew the silence unto myself, snuggling in for a mind-numbing cuddle. Silence initially manifests in black and white, like an old photo whispering sepia secrets, slowly mingling with my mind and stirring up color—stringing dreams across my soul like a gypsy clothesline. When I close my eyes I can see eternity, the lofty things with no boundaries or limitations—my playground, my meditation hall, my burial ground. ...

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On the Imperfect Daenerys

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As a fan of George R. R. Martin’s books “A Song of Ice and Fire” and the cable series “Game of Thrones” I follow other fans in cyberspace, with spoiler Facebook pages for we readers (don’t worry, not in this blog), and the numerous fun fan pages with hilarious memes. Like it or hate it, Game of Thrones to me, as a series doesn’t take itself so seriously …

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Catelyn’s Cause

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Catelyn Stark meets with the lead character of the Gastar novellas. A tall wingless demon stood outside of Shevata’s hideout in Hell; a comfortable apartment with gilded velvet furniture. A desk stood in the middle for some bookkeeping and the few rejections Zermon had her review before exiling souls from eternal doom. “She’s waiting inside.” Shevata …

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Afterlife of the Viking

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Shevata leaned back on the armrest of the obsidian throne. “Zermon, no more savages!” “I’ll remind you that you released the last one?” Zermon rolled his eyes looking over a short man brought before them in chains. “If you want to drop this one in the pit, then do it.” Shevata attempted to jump down to leave, but Zermon held her back. “No, little devil. Let’s meet this man.” He handed her the scroll. She glanced a scowl as she unrolled it and read …

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On the Love of Intrigue

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So many aspects of stories reel in the readers of books or viewers of films or shows, be it action, fantasy, drama, horror, but on the short list of it all is the lure of intrigue, when we must know what happens next and a few hours sleep or loads of laundry won’t stop us. Many daytime television dramas I recall watching as a kid not missing them so much when school started, but during summer I hated …

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And the Oscar Goes To

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The battle rages on. Yesterday thanks to the abysmally low temperatures and the sleet/snow mix that found it’s way to hold me hostage, I spent the day doing looking at various screens. Really, the only way I could of accomplished LESS over the weekend would be to have been in a coma. BUT…given the fact, hubby is working …

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On Plot Turners

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“Layer Cake” As a fan of fiction, I applaud stories that reel me in with not only unexpected endings, but with characters that lay low making the biggest difference when the story is said and done. The recent example I’ve written about the most recently is the history based “The White Queen” with Richard of York beginning …

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Gastar and Greyjoy

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The Bastard of Bolton has Theon Greyjoy in a bad way in “A Song of Ice and Fire” and “Game Of Thrones.” Let’s see if the lead characters in the Gastar novellas can help Theon out a bit. “Are you kidding me?” Zermon lumbered behind Shevata as she turned the lock of the gate behind the …

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