Saturday, June 29, 2013

I Seem to be at a Stand Still!

Hi all,

How is your weekend going?  I hope it's flowing smoothly for you.  What a nice change in the weather we had today.  Not that intense heat and humidity from this past week!  Although tomorrow it's to be up in the 80's once again with quite a bit of storms passing through.  I do hope you got to go
outside today and enjoy yourself. 

I'm having trouble getting back to working on my current novel.  Don't know what my problem is though.  I have all these ideas and almost all of my research finished, but I find I just can't seem to get at it.  There have been a lot of interruptions going on around me and I don't like to start writing and then have to stop in a half hour.  Hopefully this week I will have more time for writing, now that my house cleaning is all done. 

Of course, this Thursday is July 4th, a holiday for all of us.  How will you celebrate this day?  Perhaps you will be going to a picnic, an amusement park, an outdoor concert, a friend's cook-out, boating, swimming or any number of other things.  Whatever you choose to do to celebrate the 4th, I hope you have a great day.  If you attend evening fireworks, have fun and enjoy their beauty. 

For many people, Friday will also be a holiday from work.  If you are one of those people who have to go back to work on Friday, remember that's it's just one day and then you have two more days off from work. 

If you are going to be traveling this week, either by car, bus, train or plane, stay safe and enjoy yourself.  I certainly hope you all have good weather for whatever you choose to do to celebrate.

Just a reminder that I have two of my books up for a 'free' read today and tomorrow.  You can access them by going to and then filling in my name (Susan Lapp Mellott) in the search box.  All thirteen of my books will come up. ' The Kauffman Farm' and 'Congestive Heart Failure' are the two offered this weekend.  Enjoy!

I hope you all enjoy the balance of your weekend.  Stay safe and healthy.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

What's Up?

Hi all,

How is everyone this evening?  Since today is Wednesday, I'm sure a lot of you are busy just getting home from work or just starting work.  Of course, even when you get home, you still have dinner to prepare and/or yard or house work to do.  Or perhaps a load of laundry. 

Unless you're retired, then you may just be kicking back after eating dinner and doing very little.  If you're like me, you're sitting inside in the air conditioning.  It's been so darn hot here this week, and it doesn't seem like that will change for another few days yet.  The weather report calls for possible thunder storms and/or showers for the next seven days.  I suppose you will have that when the temperature gets up to ninety degrees. 

So, I  guess you know that I've been staying indoors alot.  Actually, I finished my cleaning today.  Now that's done until July.  We have central airconditioning, and it's just the two of us, so the house doesn't really get very dusty during the summer months.  Thank goodness!

What have you been up to?  I haven't done any more on my current novel for a few days now.  I need to get back to writing soon.  I've been busy doing other things lately.  I'm working on iris folded designs to use with my handmade Christmas greeting cards.  Doing a picture using Iris Folding is a long and tedious process, but I love the affect it makes on the card.  So, although I haven't been doing much writing, I have been doing something creative.  I guess you could even call cleaning "creative", although I'd call it "not fun".

We're supposed to be getting a new air conditioning unit soon.  We haven't had any trouble with the one we currently have, but it is getting quite old and we'd rather replace it while it's still working, instead of waiting until it conks out on us.  I truly wouldn't be able to stay here if the air conditioning wasn't working.  The heat and humidity makes it extremely hard for my heart to work properly.  My chest just tightens up and I can't get my breath.  Believe me, it's not a pleasant feeling and I try to keep it from occurring. 

Just yesterday, my daughter, Mari, posted on FB that it's six months until Christmas.  Can you believe that?  I love that season better than any other one we celebrate.  Time has been rushing by so fast.  You do realize that a week from tomorrow, is July 4th already.  It seems like just a few weeks ago we celebrated Valentine's Day.  Before we know it, summer will be over and school will be back in session.  Two of my Grandsons will be heading off to college in the fall.  I'm happy for them and wish them all the best.  Two are working full time jobs and that lets two left in high school.  Where does the time go?  I just turned sixty five years old and that's so hard for me to believe.  Where did all those years go to?

Well, for all those of you who are working, you are now on the downward side of the work week.  So, smile, that's a good thing.  I remember that feeling so well.  Stay in the cool or stay in a pool to remain cooled off, either way, stay safe.  If you have to be out in the hot sun, wear sun screen.  Skin cancer is on the rise! 

I wish all of you well.

My birthday flowers.  Aren't they just beautiful?

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Are your creative juices flowing?

Hi all,

I'm curious about whether or not anyone has been doing anything creative.   I know that when the summer months arrive, a lot of people would rather be outside.  Perhaps you have joined a pool in your area, have a swimming pool of your own, visit a local park with your children, or head out to the country.  All of these things sound wonderful.  Don't you think?  So, you say that doing some of these things don't allow much time for you to be creative.

I'd have to say that's only half true.  While at a swimming pool, one could do some sketching, read a book, write in your journal, write down some recipes that sound good to you so that when you get home you can try something new and delicious.  If you're just hanging out in your back yard, you could do a little creative arrangement of some beautiful flowers in your flower beds.

There are so many things a person can do and still be creative.  Too many people think that being creative means you have to draw, paint or write.  That's just not true.  Those of you who enjoy cooking and baking are being creative.  My husband works part time as an estimator for a fire alarm company.  All the estimates he works on is showing his creative ability.  Being a secretary, a president, a clerk has their own creative twists.  Don't cut yourself short. 

As for me, I'm still chugging along with my writing.  I'm currently working on my new novel.  It will be the third in a series of novels.  Although, any of the books could be read without reading the others.  I thought I'd get some time today to get back on it, but it just didn't work out that way.  Of course, the day isn't over yet, so we'll see. 

It was pretty warm and a bit humid today.  I was only out for some time this morning, and then for about an hour in the late afternoon.  I just watched the weather and they say it's to be hot and humid once again tomorrow.  Wonderful!  Not!

Next Sunday, there are two, possibly three women coming to visit with me.  The thing that's so great about this, is that I haven't seen any of them for years and years.  All three of them went to grade school with me, at St. Joseph's Catholic School in Dallastown.  One's family moved to Lancaster County after sixth grade, I haven't seen her for 54 years.  As for the other two, we went through grade school and high school (York Catholic High School) together.  Then we all went on our own way.  Although we've all continue to live locally.  I may have seen these two women at one or two of the YCHS class reunions, but I haven't attended any of those for many years. 

I think it's wonderful when you can reconnect with adults that you knew years and years ago.  It's funny how, as you grow old, what's important to you changes.  Really, how much do we really change after high school?  For some of us, our appearance changes:  we gain or loose weight, we have thinning hair or no hair (men), and for those who still have hair, it's probably turned gray.  Of course, we all get those pesky wrinkles, age spots, thin skin and many illnesses for some of us. 

As for me, I am a bit heavier now than when I was in high school, I certainly have wrinkles and age spots, but, I have very few gray hairs.  Whoopee!  I truly don't care if my hair would have gone all gray.  I just wish it was a bit thicker, but then it's never been thick, so why would it be that way now?

I will never even consider a face lift, botox or any other form of treatment like that.  I believe that I look the way God intended me to look.  Of course, I mean, OLD!  I have no problems with that.

Well, you have one more day left to your weekend.  I do hope you will use your creative abilities at some point tomorrow.  How about taking your camera with you, whatever you're plans are for tomorrow.  Take some spectacular photos.  Let your creative ability show through in them.  How about some pictures of just the sky.  Just stand still and look up!  It's amazing how beautiful the sky often becomes.  Just do it!

I wish all of you a good finish to the weekend.  Stay safe and have some fun.

Here are a few photos of the sky which I took while in OC, MD.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I am getting old! Or am I?

Hi all,

Well, guess what today is?  It's my birthday.  I am sixty five years old today and I give thanks to my Lord that I am alive to celebrate today's birthday.  I have been so fabulously blessed.  So, today, on my birthday, I am content! 

Now for a short story:  I was born on June 20, 65 years ago.  It was also Father's Day and the day on which my Grandmother passed away.  She was only in her fifties.  This Grandmother was my Father's Mother.  Obviously, I've never gotten to meet her.  Her name was Edna.  I wish I would have gotten to know her.  I'm sure that was a very hard day for my Dad.  He must have been so sad that his Mother just passed away, and then happy because of my birth.  I can't even imagine what a hard day that must have been, and it was Father's Day.

My husband, Gerry, invited my daughters and their familites (who were available) to join us for my birthday dinner tonight at the Olive Garden.  Only six of them were able to make it, but we sent meals home for those who had to work, if they wanted one.  I don't usually make a big deal out of my birthday, but it was very nice spending it with half of my family.  (We missed you, Candy, Mike, Cori, Jacob, Toby and Luke.) 

I got so many flowers for my birthday, that my house is like a green house.  They are so beautiful!  All in all, it was a great day for me.  My thanks to everyone!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

How did I get this way?

Hi all,

Have you every wondered how you got to be the way you are?  Here's what I believe:  we are what we learn as a child; family traits carry on from parent to child; as we grow into adulthood, we stand tall on our own morals and values.  I believe all of the above it true. 

If we are raised by loving, honest, dependable and hard working parents, then most of us pass these same things on to any children we may have.  Not all parents are good parents, but for the most part, I'm speaking about those who are. 

Does this mean we never do something that's just wrong?  Absolutely not!  We're all human and we all have our faults, particularly earlier in our lives, but most of us acknowledge right from wrong and do the very best we can in life. 

Basically, what I'm referring to is our little idiosyncrasies.  Mostly, I'm much like my Mother, but the older I become, I realize I'm so much like my Dad.  That's not a bad thing, because both my Parents were wonderful people.

As far as my Mother, she was very creative.  She was always open, honest and a very loving woman.  She believed in God and taught us to put our faith in Him.  She taught me to cook, clean, wash clothes, iron, clean up after myself, but most important, she taught me to have faith in the people I love and in myself.  I learned from her to treat and love every member of my family the same, this included those guys that my daughters chose to love.  Of course, I didn't realize all these things when I was growing up.  It wasn't until I became an adult that it all made perfect sense to me. 

Now, for my Dad.  I was Daddy's little girl, that is until my baby brother came along, six years after me.  Don't get me wrong, he still loved me just as much as always.  He was different, in so many ways from my Mom.  He didn't have a specific religion, although later in life he attended the Catholic Church services every Sunday along side my Mother.  He truly believed in God and trusted Him, always.  I know that he's up in heaven right next to my Mother.  One of the things I remember about my Dad, was that as he aged, he became a home body.  It was like pulling teeth to get him to take trips with my Mother, even though he was in good health.  He just seemed content being at home.

 I never really understood this about my Dad.  Well, that is, until the last few years.  Since I am ill, there isn't a lot I am able to do anymore, but I find myself perfectly happy to stay right here, in my home.  I'm content being here.  I have no big thrills to see the world, although that's not something I would be able to do any longer.  I feel no regrets.  Sometimes I wander why I feel this way, when my friends all love running around here and there all the time.  Of course, most of them are fairly healthy. 

I believe this is because I'm content with myself and my life.  I've embraced my illness totally.  I'm not in any way bitter or angry that this happened to me.  Quite the opposite, I'm so blessed to still be alive and able to do what little activities I can.  My writing enriches my life, as well as my hand made greeting cards.  I know that God has placed His Divine Mercy on me and that's really all I need.

I find that now I know what is important and what isn't in life.  All those little things I used to worry about just don't matter to me anymore.  Oh, I'm still a fairly organized person and a creature of habit.  I have my daily routines and basically never defer from them.  I'm a list person and I like things planned ahead of time.  I really don't fly by-the-seat-of-my-pants very well!  I like to think things through and know ahead of time what direction I want to take with anything that I do, especially in my writing and art work. 

I love my friends and like spending time with them when I get the chance.  I'm not really concerned about how clean my house is, if somethings a bit wrinkled, what color my house walls or rugs are.  I know what is important in my life.  I do not try to impress people.  If you don't like me for the person I am, then that's okay.  Not everyone is going to like everyone they meet, and that's just the way it is.

So, just some food for thought for you.  Have you ever wondered why you're the way you are?  If not, perhaps you should!  Sometimes there's an underlying reason why we do and act the way we do.
I hope your day is a good one.

Monday, June 17, 2013

And on to the start of another week...

Hi all,

Well, now that Father's Day is passed, I do hope that all you Fathers out there had a super great day.  Being a good Dad is hard work.  It involves making a lot of hard decisions concerning your sons and daughters.  Many of which result in them being very angry with you.  As a Dad you have to stand your ground in those things which will make your child a better person.  Saying "no", in many cases, is your way of saying "I love you" to them, even though they won't figure that out for many, many years to come. 

My Dad and Grandpa have been on my mind a lot lately.  They've both passed away, but that doesn't stop me from thinking of them often.  My Dad was my hero.  He worked long and hard for his family.  So we could have a good home and life.  I was Daddy's little girl and I miss that!

Yesterday was a very quiet day for me, as my husband traveled about two and one half hours to a reunion.  He was gone from 9:15 am until 7:45pm.  Most days I can keep myself busy, but for some reason, I couldn't yesterday.  I spend much time alone, and usually I'm okay with it.  I couldn't even concentrate on working on my novel.  Not sure what was up with that!

Things are back to normal today.   The sun was shinning this morning, but lately it's been going in and out.  I didn't think we were to have rain until tomorrow afternoon.  I  understand that by the end of the week, we are to have temperatures of 90 degrees.  Ugh!   For some reason when it's so hot outside, I can't force myself to even go outside of the house.  Maybe I'm just getting old!!

I'm in the process of trying to come up with a little mystery to add to my new novel.  I have some thoughts in mind, but haven't decided on any particular one just yet.  I'm sure I will eventually come up a super idea.  My writing means so much to me.  I have some other things I'd like to do, but haven't really started anything else as of yet. 

I hope this week brings good things your way.  Don't work too hard and make sure to keep a little bit of time for yourself.  We all need that! 

Friday, June 14, 2013

I'm almost ready, are you?

Hi all,

Well, the weekend is almost upon us.  What will you be doing this weekend?  Will you be starting something creative?  Perhaps something that you are passionate about?  As I've said before, there are so many ways for a person to be creative.  How about those flower beds of yours?  I'm sure many of you would enjoy working out in them, planting some beautiful summer flowers or bushes.  I realize that anyone can plant flowers and shrubs.  But, it takes someone with a bit of creative ability to do it in such a way to make everything look symmetrical. 

As for me, I am about ready to start on my new novel.  I believe I have now completed the bulk of the research which I needed to do.  I'm sure there will be a few things pop up from time to time that I will need to research, but I'll worry about them as I come upon them.  I was trying to fall asleep last night and all I could think about was how I wanted to start this novel.  Well, I finally got my mind off my writing and fell asleep.  I still have a few things I need to be doing; such as applying for an ISBN number for the new novel.  Although, that really won't take too much time, as it's done on line and received back to me by the Internet.  It's just taking the time to sit down and place my order.  I think tomorrow will be a good day for me to accomplish that task.

My husband, Gerry, will be participating in a golf tournament for charity tomorrow, so I'll have much of the day free to choose whatever I want to do with myself.  I know that once I get started actually writing the book, I will not want to stop.  I have a feeling this one will be longer than either of the other two, as the trip we will be making takes place over a twenty five day period. 

Also, I soon need to be thinking about designing a front and back cover for the novel.  I have some ideas for both of these, but I just need to set the time aside to play on my computer for awhile.  I've designed all the covers of my books by myself.  Since I have been blessed with both writing and artistic abilities, it saves me some cash by designing and creating them myself. 

I lead a very sedentary lifestyle because of my chronic congestive heart failure and other illnesses.  I'm not complaining, not by any means!  I've completely accepted and embraced my illnesses with both arms wide open.  God has truly blessed me and I need to give back for all the blessings He has bestowed upon me all through my life. 

Next week I will celebrate my sixty-fifth birthday.  My, oh my, where have the years gone?  They just seem to have flown by so fast.  I've had a good life.  I've always been given everything I needed at the time.  Sure, sometimes it was tough getting by, either due to a lack of money or personal burdens I had to carry.  But, God always carried me when I could no longer walk on my own.  I cherish every year that God gives me to be alive.  Starting year sixty-five is exciting for me.  What surprises await me this coming year?  I'm sure there will be some great ones and some unpleasant ones.  But, no matter which they are, I will get through them with God right by my side, as always.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.  The weather is to be pretty good, so get outside if you have the opportunity.  Whatever you choose to do, have some fun!  Enjoy the time you have with your family or friends.  People come and go so fast in our lives, enjoy them while they're here.  It's so important that we tell those we love, how we feel about them every day.  We just never know what day will be our last one, or the last one for the people we love. 

God gave us the gifts of Faith, Hope and Love.  He says that the greatest of these is Love.  I believe that if you love someone with your whole heart, the faith and hope will follow, how can it not?
I wish you a joyous and fulfilling weekend with love and joy.  God be with you always.

This picture was taken on May 1st, at my Daughter's house.  We were attending a graduation party for one of my Grandsons.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Here we are once again!

Hi all,

This time, every week, we experience 'hump' day.  I do hope your day is a great one.  You're now on the downward slide of the week.

I'm been busy, still doing research for my next novel.  Our adventure will be a little more involved than the other two novels, due to the mode of transportation we will be using.  I am enjoying putting bits and pieces of information together so I can come up with a thoroughly enjoyable read.  I will soon be done with my research.  Thank goodness!  I've used so much printer ink and paper, and my ink cartridges aren't cheap. 

A close friend of mine is coming to visit me today.  We will share a simple lunch and enjoy each others company.  My husband headed up to the campground early this morning.  We haven't been there for a couple of weeks, so he thought he'd better go up and clean up the site.  Also, to check out the inside of the trailer.  Just to make sure everything is okay.  Our refrigerator is quite old and we know that one of these days, it's going to go on the blink.  I sure hope it's not today!

It is a beautiful day today.  But, I believe the temperature is to be up to about 85 degrees, which is definitely way too hot and humid for me to be outside.  But, at least it's not raining.  That is, until tomorrow!  I'm getting a bit tired of the rain.  It seems like this should be April, what with all the rain showers we've been experiencing lately.  Oh well, there is not a thing I can do about the weather, now is there?

I hope that one day soon, I can get to go down to Wrightsville.  There is a very small public park, right along the banks of the Susquehanna River, which I especially enjoy.  It always seems like no matter how hot the day is, while you are there, it's so much cooler and there's always a nice cool breeze blowing off the river.  I love sitting and watching the river as it flows on by, on it's way.  But then, the sight of a river, a stream or the ocean, has always soothed me inside and out.  I can definitely see God's presence in those moving water oasis's. 

Well, I need to keep moving this morning, so I am going to cut this a bit short for today.  If possible, try to get outside to enjoy, at least, a few minutes of God's sunshine.  I do hope your day is an inspiring one!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Time just seems to slip on by!

Hi all,

How are you doing today?  This weekend is fastly coming to an end, just like every other weekend does.  I hope you had some fun over the past few days. 

As for me, I've been spending many hours, a lot of paper, ink cartridges and confusion on doing research for my next novel.  My notes are growing by leaps and bounds.  Of course, I'm not typing up all the information I print off, just some of it.  The rest I am arranging by category and state.  I can't honestly say that this part of writing is much fun.  But, it is so much easier to do the bulk of the research ahead of time, rather than constantly stopping to research something or other. 

I believe this will allow me to move along much more swiftly once I actually get started on the novel.
I've chosen a title for this book, but I think I will keep it to myself for a little while yet.  This will be the third book in this series.  Although, each book can be read separately. 

If anyone is interested, I still have sixteen copies of my second adult novel available for sale privately.  It is called, "Crafty-Cruise" With A Capital "C".  The cost is $11.00 plus shipping, unless you live locally.  Then you can pick it up if you'd like to save on the shipping.  I do not have any
copies of the first book available any longer.  You can purchase it for any electronic reader or PC or laptop by going to  All you need to do is enter my name into the search block (Susan Lapp Mellott) and hit click.  All thirteen of the books I have available to electronic reading will then appear. 

I want to thank each and every one of you who are reading my blog.  I means a lot to me that you take the time to share what's happening with me.  I would love it if you'd care to comment.  Let me know what's going on in your life.  Do you write?  Do you paint or draw?  In what way are you crafty?  I'd truly love to know. 

Well, I suppose for a lot of you, it will be back to work, once again bright and early tomorrow morning.  I, too, will be back working on research, as well as, doing laundry and my usual Monday chores.  Late this afternoon, I baked a large scone.  My husband and I had a rather different dinner tonight.  We had strawberry shortcake with nice cold milk.

 This takes me back many, many years.  When I was growing up on the farm, Dad and Grandpa would pick our strawberries, while my Mom would bake a nice shortcake.  That's what we'd have for dinner that evening.  As a child, my siblings and I, thought it was wonderful that we could eat as much as we needed to fill ourselves up. 

Some times those childhood memories overtake me.  I had a wonderful childhood.  We didn't have much money, but we (my brother and sister) received everything we needed, and even a few things we didn't.  I never remember feeling that I was deprived in any way.  We lived a rather simple lifestyle.  We grew a lot of our own vegetables and fruits.  My Mom did alot of home canning and home freezing.  We grew up appreciating every thing that we had.  I have to say that my Mom and Dad were great Parents!  I loved them so much.

I suppose I'll close to today.  I hope before the day ends, you will find a few minutes just for yourself.  It's something each and every one of us needs, every day.  I hope you start this new week with joy and optimism.  Stay safe.

Friday, June 7, 2013

And now they begin...

Hi all,

My title is referring to the hurricanes for the season.  It amazes me how much more severe these storms have become during the last ten or twenty years.  They have been causing total destruction in many areas.  I don't remember ever having storms this disastrous.  How about you?

I know that we have had hurricanes many times during my younger years, but it doesn't seem like there was so much devastation.  How about all these tornadoes, with the utter piles of rubble they have been letting behind.  One day your house, car and property is absolutely fine and then within a few short minutes, everything is gone.  Sometimes, including human lives.  It breaks my heart for these families. 

I have to ask myself, why is this happening?  Is there a logical reason for this?  Does it have to do with global warming?  Or perhaps it's from all the chemical and hazard stuff factories omit into the air these days?  Or maybe it's from all the car fumes?  Whatever has been responsible for this drastic change in our weather, I hope someone soon finds a way to change things.  It's not just here in the United States, either.  Do you have any ideas?

All I know is that, I, as an old lady, can not change the weather pattern.  But, I do hope that someone, at some point, can figure out what the cause is, and then do something to change it. 

I understand that this hurricane season is to be a very severe one.  That means more destruction here in the United States, and more pain, suffering and deaths for all of us.  This idea really upsets me.

Now, to change the subject, what have you been up to lately?  I've been spending time each day doing research for the third novel in my series.  I'm working on typing up my research notes, so I won't have to take the time to look something up, when I start writing the book.  I guess I'll get started writing within the next couple of months. 

I am getting excited about this new novel.  I have alot of ideas and it's hard to get them all down on paper, so I don't forget them.  Last night, while trying to fall asleep, some things kept popping into my head.  It took me awhile to get these thoughts out of my mind, so I could fall asleep.

Well, it's been raining all day here, sometimes just a drizzle and other times a pouring down rain.  What a dreary day!  I hate days like this.  It seemed like I didn't have any energy all day today.  Oh yeah, that's my normal day, isn't it?  I did do two loads of laundry this morning, though.  So, I did do something constructive today, besides doing research.

Tomorrow, my husband has a golf tournament for most of the day.  I'm glad that the rain should be out of here by tomorrow morning.  I know he's really looking forward to competing in this tournament.  I'm happy that he has the opportunity to golf whenever he gets the chance.  He works hard and I am pleased when he gets to do something that he enjoys.  So, I wish him luck and hope he enjoys himself tomorrow.

As for me, I suppose I will still be doing research and typing up notes tomorrow.  Maybe one of my friends will come in to see me tomorrow.  We'll see.  I hope you all have a great weekend.  Try to set some time aside just for yourself, over the next two days.  I'm sure most of you will be very busy, running kids around, but time for yourself is very important, also.

Whatever you do, stay safe and have some fun!

PS:  Don't forget to do something creative over the weekend.  You know that creativity exist in many things, not just drawing, painting or writing.  How about trying a new recipe over the weekend, or perhaps plant some flowers in your flower beds.  Choose the plants you like and arrange them creatively.  Beautiful flower beds are a creative talent!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

It was just perfect!

Hi all,

How are all of you doing today?  I hope you're all well and had a chance to get out and enjoy today's weather.  It was, indeed, the perfect day:  temperatures in the low seventies and very low humidity, sunny and beautiful.  What more could we ask for? 

I'm sure not everyones weather was picture perfect today, but mine was.  That would be here, in South Central Pennsylvania.  After last weeks temperatures in the nineties, I'm over joyed to be enjoying the low seventies.  After all, it is only early June.

What have you been up to lately?  I've been doing some research for my next fiction novel.  I spent over two hours today looking up information and then printing it out.  I like to have most of my research done before I start writing.  Of course, there are always small things that come up that I need to look up. 

One of the things I learned many years ago, while taking some writing courses, was to document all my facts.  Even though I am writing fiction, I still need to make sure any place or thing that's real, is documented.  I suppose one could write a completely fictitious novel, if one wanted to do that.  I prefer to make the plot of the story fictitious, while using factual information in many of the places and things. 

This will be the third novel in this series.  All three of them will be able to be read alone.  The same characters are staring in all three of the books.  I've always enjoyed reading books, where the same characters appear in all of them.  I like the way the characters grow and change from book to book. 

I also enjoy novels which are about human life; every day living.  There are a few authors who write books like this and I always enjoy them.  I suppose I like this type of novel because I'm a very sentimental and tradition driven person.  I love carrying on the old traditions passed down from my Grandparents and Parents.  I think that's what makes families feel connected.  At least I hope it is. 

My husband, Gerry and I are in the process of having our home painted.  It's a big job.  It's a brick house which was built in the early nineteen hundreds.  I know you don't usually paint a brick home, but here's the problem.  Both the bricks and the mortar is deteriorating.  We had it repointed a few years ago, but it just keep getting worse.  We have a lot of dampness coming through to the inside.  So painting the house, we hope will do away with the dampness problems.  We've tried just about everything else.  We're going with a creamy tan color for the bricks and a dark cocoa brown for the trim.  It has to be thoroughly cleaned and prepared before the actual painting.    We had the metal roofs repainted a week or two ago.  They look good. 

There is so much upkeep needed when you own your own home.  If it's a home that's over one hundred years old, like ours, it multiplies the repairs.  I love my home; it's decorated exactly the way I wanted it.  It feels homey and comfortable to me.  It's my safe place, just as I'm sure, your home is to you.  Isn't that the way it's supposed to be? 

Well, tomorrow is once again, hump day, for all you folks out there who are still working full time jobs.  The weather tomorrow is to be nice, once again.  I hope that you get the chance to get outside, at least for a short time, to enjoy it.  I may go out tomorrow and do a bit of work in my flower bed.  We have a very small yard, but I do enjoy my flower beds, even though they're not big. 

Whatever you do, make some time for yourself to do something you enjoy doing.  It will, not only, make you feel good, it will also help build your self-esteem.  All my best to you and yours.  God bless and keep you all.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

I'm at peace, are you?

Hi all,

Happy Sunday to you all!  I feel very much at peace today.  I suppose it could have something to do with the fact that I just prayed the Chaplet of Divine Mercy.  For anyone who doesn't know what that is, it's a prayer that's sung, over and over on the rosary beads.  I must say that praying the rosary never moved me the way the chaplet does.  It always brings me to tears; it refreshes my soul and brings peace into my heart. 

Today, being Sunday, is God's day of rest.  I'm sure, no matter what religion you are, most of you believe that God created Monday through Saturday and then He created Sunday, as His day of rest.  It is His day for us to praise Him and give Him thanks for all He's blessed us with each day. 

Even those of you who are, perhaps ill, or poor, or sad, or emotionally upset, are blessed by God.  He gives you the breath of life, so that you will wake up every morning to live another day.  He didn't make all those sad things happen to you.  In most all cases, we cause our own pain and hopelessness.
God is always there, ready to help us pick ourselves back up and move onward.  If that's what we're choosing to do!  And, I hope it is!

Last evening my husband, Gerry, and I attended a graduation party for our Grandson, Toby.  Both he and Tucker (another Grandson) graduated on Friday evening from YCHS.  Toby's party was very nice.  His Mom (my daughter, Candy) and her husband (JD) had a streaming movie of Toby from birth until the present time.  (She also did one for her oldest son, Jacob, when he graduated.)  It was quite moving.  It's funny, how as I looked at each of those snapshots, from when he was a baby and a toddler, it seems like just yesterday.  I remember that small loving child so clearly. 

I have to say that each of my six Grandsons (Jacob, Cori, Tucker, Toby, Luke and Tanner) were precious little boys, who have grown into handsome, strong and wonderful young men.  Well, Tanner and Luke aren't quite grown up men yet, but they're almost there.  Some of the best days of my life were when my boys were little and I'd teach them a craft, or we'd sit down and I'd read them story books.  I had quite a collection of "Golden Story Books", and they each had their own favorites. 

One of the other things they always enjoyed was having me share stories with them about my Grandpa Utterback or my Grandma Welsh.  I remember, specifically, Toby always asking, "Grandma, tell us that story about your Grandpa and the apple tree." 

Toby wasn't the only one who enjoyed that story.  I recall when I was a youngster on the farm, my Grandpa would spend all day Wednesday and Saturday with us.  Mom would always have a special supper for him with his favorite foods and dessert.  After we finished eating, we'd all remain sitting at the table (which we usually never did) and listened while Grandpa told us stories from long, long ago. 

One of my favorites (and apparently Toby's), was when Grandpa was about ten years old.  He and his friend (who just happened to be black) went into a nearby apple orchard, in hopes of finding a few good apples to sneak.  This particular time, Grandpa's young friend decided that the best apples were far up in the trees.  So, he choose to climb a tree.  When he got up as far as he felt he needed to go, he inched out, backward, on a limb to get the juiciest apples. 

Meanwhile, my Grandpa was standing guard down below.  He noticed that each time his friend inched out a bit further, the limb would got down lower.  He proceeded to tell his friend to stop there and just pick two apples.  But, his friend kept telling him that he'd just move out a wee bit further.
And so he did.  Suddenly, the limb cracked and down he came.  All the while, shouting, "Lordy, Lordy, Lordy, Lordy!"

Before Grandpa would even get to that part of the story, he'd start laughing and have a hard time telling us the story.  Then we'd start laughing at Grandpa laughing so hard.  Of course, we'd heard that story so many times over the years, but we still always wanted to hear it again.  Oh, what I wouldn't give to hear him telling it, just one more time.  But, alas, Grandpa passed away when I was fourteen years old.  I still miss him today.

As I sit here today, I feel old.  I will be soon turning sixty-five years old.  Don't misunderstand me, I'm not feeling sad, just like I've lived many, many years already.  I suppose that's because I have!  I love my life just the way it is, even with my chronic illnesses.  I believe that I am right where God wants me to be today.  I know God loves me and is always with me. 

So, I suppose that explains why I say I am at peace today, and for a long time now.  I hope each and every one of you will find that inner peace which comes from God.  I truly can't imagine living my life without it.  God bless and keep you!
These are my six Grandson whom I's so ver proud of always...