Sunday, July 2, 2017

Pie Baking Contest

I had the pleasure of entering my very first pie baking contest this July 4th holiday weekend. What a thrill that was. The judges lifted the entries to inspect the filling, they broke the pie crust to examine the interior, and allowed themselves plenty of time to come to a final decision.
My pie is the very first one in the picture- Sour Cream Apple - and although I didn't win first prize, a free cooking class with the chef at Zesti's in Hartland, I enjoyed the competition and tension the other bakers and I experienced when the judging began. We huddled together doing our best to decipher what the judges were saying. Too funny!
The well-deserved winner was a lemon meringue cheesecake pie. The winner said it took her all day to make it! I've never even heard of that pie, but hope to get that recipe.
Along with writing romance stories, I love baking pies - it's another creative outlet that brings a lot of joy to others. Whatever you do this holiday, I hope it brings happiness into your lives. Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Author Events



It certainly was busy this last month attending two Author Events. One at West Allis Library and the other at New Berlin Public Library. I really enjoy these opportunities because we, as authors, have a chance to talk with the reading audience, find out what they enjoy reading, and present our books. It’s a win-win.




Monday, February 6, 2017

A Dog's Birthday

Today was our dog, Rudy's, 10th birthday. He's entered a new decade of life just as I did last month. I'm not sure about you, but I'll admit right now, sometimes I take our furry friend for granted.
Rudy and I walk every day, pretty much the same route - a 40 minutes lap around the neighborhood. He sniffs and tinkles, and I pound the pavement. In my head I'm working on the next scene for my work-in-progress. For him, he's on the hunt. It's a win-win for both of us.
We're a good match, Rudy and I, as we both need to be outside every day - unless of course, it's below 20 degrees - that's our line. When I ask him if he's ready for a walk the answer in his face is always yes. If it drifts beyond "our time" he quietly walks over and sits next to me and then stares! He knows it's time! Let's Go!
We've had Golden Retrievers before Rudy, and I know that our time with him is dwindling, but for now, I'll enjoy this time together with my buddy. Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

What Motivates You?


Does this photo make you ache for a get-a-way? I’m curious how you are all doing with your New Year’s resolutions. Maybe you’re not a resolution person, but instead; you set yearly goals as I do. One of mine being not to worry. Tying in a goal to what motivates us becomes a strong bond to see our goals through. Personally, reading scripture every morning – especially Proverbs – or listening to a new piece of music – usually composed of string instruments – or reading a famous quote – one that tweaks my world just a tad, helps me immensely.

Today, I want to touch on the concept of worry with a real-life example... Yesterday, my son-in-law and daughter drove me to the airport during rush-hour Nashville traffic. For those of you who have experienced this, there’s really not much I can add other than to say it was extremely congested to the point of stopped traffic on the interstate. So, we opted for the back roads thinking we find clear passage. Nope! Almost an hour later (to travel 15 miles) I made my flight with three minutes to spare and a scolding from the luggage attendant!

During the drive, I pondered. I considered. I felt a bit anxious, but I refused to worry my mind with thoughts such as: what happens if I miss my flight? Will I be able to book another flight this morning? Will I spend the day at the terminal? Instead, I chose to trust that if I missed my flight there must be a reason. Was there someone I’d cross paths with whom I needed to connect with?

As a writer, I gather my experiences through life and use them later in dialogue or setting a scene, or in behavior for my characters. Life itself is a classroom for me.

So, today I leave you with something that inspires me - a quote from my ultimate heroine, Joyce Meyers from her devotional, “Trusting God Day by Day”. “Nothing is outside God’s control, so in reality there is nothing to worry about.” I hope it helps you if you struggle with the same weakness as I. We can overcome with the tools that motivate us. Find yours. Happy 2017.  

Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.  

Friday, October 14, 2016

Cedar Communities Presentation

I had the pleasure of receiving a phone call from one of my readers a few weeks ago. Jan said she read my first book, published in 2011, "Nick, The Journey of a Lifetime". What an absolute thrill to hear from her. She explained that she loved the book so much because she had a similar past that she encouraged her book club to read it. She asked if I would be willing to visit with them and discuss the book and my writing journey. We set a date and had several follow-up conversations to prepare for the day's event.

It was a beautiful day to take a drive to Cedar Communities in West Bend. The book club members had reserved their lecture hall for the afternoon's event. They provided me with a microphone, which I've never used before but loved it because everyone could hear me, a podium, and a table to set up my display boards, photos and books.

The presentation began at 3:00. I was asked to speak for an hour to their book club, two guest book clubs, and a memoir group looking for tips and advice - about 35 audience members. That hour sped by as I explained the steps I used to writing and publishing my first book, a peek into my second book, and my advice to those wishing to write their memoirs.

I was given a tour of their facility, which had more of a hotel feel than apartment living. I saw an enormous pool and eight-person hot tub, a satisfying arts and craft center, a huge barn that offers resident woodworkers with enough space and equipment to feel like they're in woodworkers heaven, an attractive restaurant, a gift shop and store and three libraries.

After the tour, we enjoyed an fabulous dinner at the restaurant surrounded by the colors of fall from the birch trees outside nearby windows. Our conversation drifted from their childhood years to the electronic devices of today. We laughed, we ate good food, and we enjoyed each others' company and when dusk settled in I was reluctantly on my way home.

Presenting at book clubs, organizations, associations or book stores and gift shops never gets old. It's a privilege to talk about my work and an appreciated opportunity to give back to others seeking the same writing path.

Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live,

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Two Author Presentations



I had the privilege of addressing two audiences last week in two separate author presentations. 
What a privilege, what a joy to be able to stand before an audience and talk about my books, what motivates me to write, and where I see myself going in the future. 
The two events were on the heels of a telephone call I received from a reader with a strong Polish accent who thanked me for writing my first book, “Nick, The Journey of a Lifetime.” She asked me where she could buy the book because she wanted a copy to give to her son. What an extraordinary compliment that I didn’t anticipate when I accepted my husband’s suggestion to write his grandparents’ story. 
We all have a story of immigration in our histories and maybe my book has the ability to start the dialogue in families. As I read the thank you notes that I received from the hosts for last week’s presentations, all I can say is how very lucky am I. Until next time, let us enjoy this life we are blessed to live.  

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Don Beebe, Former Packer, Visit



Today was special. Don Beebe, a former Green Bay Packer, spoke for nearly one hour at each of the three services at our church at River Glen. He explained in great detail how he never should have ended up in the NFL. He wanted to play basketball. The former Packer explained each time he tried to walk a path other than the one God had intended for him, he was gently corrected or God simply waited until he was ready. His presentation reminded me of how God’s hand can be seen in our lives if you take the time to dialogue with God or in prayer. Beebe reminded us that we all are blessed with gifts but then asked us if we are using the gifts to glorify God? When you look back in your lives, do you see God’s handiwork? We were left with some powerful questions from an impressive man who speaks openly about his faith and his walk with Christ since boyhood. As a writer myself, I have great respect for those who can so eloquently, like Don Beebe, walk onto a stage, and as if he’s talking only to you, speak on such a personal topic as this with an auditorium full of people. After the service, I volunteered to help get the books signed for church members. What a thrill! Until next time, let us live the life we are blessed to live.


Pie Baking Contest

I had the pleasure of entering my very first pie baking contest this July 4th holiday weekend. What a thrill that was. The judges lifted t...