Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Tuesday Tidbits: MUG SHOTS


Look at my two new mugs!



I rewarded myself with these two new tea mugs. When I complete work tasks like finish writing a novel or novella and turn it in, complete an edit or proofread, or complete some other large writing task, I write it down and give myself permission to reward myself with something. Already this year, two of my regular mugs that I use to drink my tea broke. I poured hot water in them and snap, they popped. So, for a recent edit I completed, I bought myself two new mugs. I love the big ones. The glitter mug is really big. The biggest I have. I love it!

Now where to put these big beauties.

Any time I move, the new place doesn't fit our stuff the same. The place we recently moved to has a pocket-sized kitchen. I keep rearranging the cupboards for maximum storage. So far everything I've tried hasn't been satisfying.

I have this metal baker's rack that I thought would work great to hang some mugs from. Since we're renting, I didn't want to make holes in the bottom of the cupboards for hooks to hang mugs. I had a difficult time locating "S" style hooks that would work for both the rack and the mugs and that weren't too expensive.

I finally found these. 


Regular plain, cheap shower curtain hooks. I bought a package of 12 for 97 cents. WooHoo! They were a little long as I suspected they would be. But with a couple of pliers, I turned them into these.


I put them on my baker's rack and hung some mugs from them.


They work great. And then I could put my collection of teas out on the shelf as well.


I was having a terrible time getting to my teas all crammed in a cupboard piled on top of each other. It was miserable. I think I'm going to like this much better. And it frees up some cupboard space for other dishes.

If you've noticed my new mugs are missing from this picture, that's because they are both dirty. I doubt that either of them will spend much time sitting on the baker's rack or hanging around.

=0)

COMING SOON!

Book 2 in the Quilting Circle series, THE DAUGHTER'S PREDICAMENT

NEW!
Love Is One of Life’s Greatest Adventures 
Seven daring damsels don’t let the norms of their eras hold them back. Along the way these women attract the attention of men who admire their bravery and determination, but will they let love grow out of the adventures?

Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure, a 1904 road-trip
Zola Calkin sets out on an adventure to be the first woman to drive across the country. Will the journalist tasked to report her presumed failure sabotage her efforts? Or will he steal her heart?

Released December 1, 2018

COURTING HER PRODIGAL HEART
Mother-to-Be’s Amish Homecoming... Pregnant and alone, Dori Bontrager is sure her Amish kin won’t welcome her—or the child she’s carrying—into the community. And she’s determined that her return won’t be permanent. As soon as she finds work, she’ll leave again. But with her childhood friend Eli Hochstetler insisting she and her baby belong here, will Dori’s path lead back to the Englisher world…or into Eli’s arms?
(Book 3 in the Prodigal Daughters series released January 1, 2019)




RECENT!
THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT ~ A sweet historical romance that will tug at your heart. This is book 1 in the Quilting Circle series.
Washington State, 1893
     When Lily Lexington Bremmer arrives in Kamola with her young son, she’s reluctant to join the social center of her new community, the quilting circle, but the friendly ladies pull her in. She begins piecing a sunshine and shadows quilt because it mirrors her life. She has a secret that lurks in the shadows and hopes it doesn’t come out into the light. Dark places in her past are best forgotten, but her new life is full of sunshine. Will her secrets cast shadows on her bright future?
     Widower Edric Hammond and his father are doing their best to raise his two young daughters. He meets Lily and her son when they arrive in  town and helps her find a job and a place to live. Lily resists Edric’s charms at first but finds herself falling in love with this kind, gentle man and his two darling daughters. Lily has stolen his heart with her first warm smile, but he’s cautious about bringing another woman into his girls’ lives due to the harshness of their own mother.
     Can Edric forgive Lily her past to take hold of a promising chance at love?

THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT is now available in ebook and paperback.

#ChristianRomance #HistoricalRomance #Romance

MARY DAVIS s a bestselling, award-winning novelist of over two dozen titles in both historical and contemporary themes. Her 2018 titles include; "Holly and Ivy" in A Bouquet of Brides Collection (January), Courting Her Amish Heart (March), The Widow’s Plight (July), Courting Her Secret Heart (September), “Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure” in The MISSAdventure Brides Collection (December), and Courting Her Prodigal Heart (January 2019). She is a member of ACFW and active in critique groups.
Mary lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of over thirty-four years and two cats. She has three adult children and two incredibly adorable grandchildren. Find her online at:

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Tuesday TIdbits: MY FAIRY CAT SNORES


While I’m working or watching TV, I can hear this soft snorfling from my Norwegian Forest Cat or Wegie as they are also known. In Norway, they are referred to as Skogkatt (forest cat). And my favorite name for the breed is Fairy Cats!


My Fairy Cat’s name is Buffy. We adopted her from a rescue shelter in 2003. She was about four months old and sold herself with her friendly nature and lying on her back in our arms.

This breed is a large, semi-longhaired cat. They have a double coat. The outer hair is long and waterproof while the under coat is downy and insulating. This coat is designed to withstand the cold Scandinavian winters. Buffy has hair exploding all over her body, out of her ears and paws. She is very fluffy.



The females range from 8-16 pounds and the males from 12-20 pounds, some grow to gigantic sizes of 30 pounds or more. They are intelligent cats. They can come in a wide variety of colors and patterns.

The Norwegian Forest Cat is an old breed with several mentions of large, longhaired cats in Norse mythology and is likely the cats that Viking explorers took on their ships to control rodents.


Wegies are generally a friendly cat. Once around Christmas, carolers came to our door. Buffy jumped on the half-wall by the door and peeked her head around the corner and greeted them with a questioning meow that seemed to say, “Did you come just to see me?” The poor carolers tried to hold it together but couldn’t and cracked up. They had a hard time getting it back together to finish their song. She much prefers men, and when people come to visit she likes to visit with them.

Norse legend refers to the skogkatt as a “mountain-dwelling fairy cat with an ability to climb sheer rock faces that other cats could not manage.” My fairy cat hasn’t climbed any rock faces, but she does love to go up high. When other cats would run and run and run from a dog or children who are after them, Buffy goes high. Rather then run, she will jump up on the nearest thing and climb out of reach, then look down upon her would-be pursuer, knowing they can’t reach her.


From day one, she was madly, deeply, head-over-heels in love with my husband. I grew up with cats from as long as I can remember. We’ve had scads of cats over the years, so I was experienced in petting and favorite places they like to be scratched. Whereas my husband had only ever encountered mean cats when he was young. I would be scratching Buffy and petting her and getting her to purr. Then my husband would walk in the room, and she would purr louder. He would look at her and her purring increased. Then he would talk to her, and she would purr even louder. Then when he’d finally touch her, that’s when the double purr rattle would kick in. All while I’m holding her as I was doing to get her to purr in the first place.

When my husband would go outside to do yard work or something, Buffy would sit at the door crying loudly for him. I would call her name to let her know she wasn’t alone. She would glance back at me and give a soft meow, then turn back to the door and cry.

Don’t get me wrong, Buffy loves me, but she is naturally drawn to men.

And I love my Buffy, princess fairy cat!



NEW!

Love Is One of Life’s Greatest Adventures 
Seven daring damsels don’t let the norms of their eras hold them back. Along the way these women attract the attention of men who admire their bravery and determination, but will they let love grow out of the adventures?

Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure, a 1904 road-trip
Zola Calkin sets out on an adventure to be the first woman to drive across the country. Will the journalist tasked to report her presumed failure sabotage her efforts? Or will he steal her heart?

COURTING HER PRODIGAL HEART (Book 3 in the Prodigal Daughters series)

Mother-to-Be’s Amish Homecoming... Pregnant and alone, Dori Bontrager is sure her Amish kin won’t welcome her—or the child she’s carrying—into the community. And she’s determined that her return won’t be permanent. As soon as she finds work, she’ll leave again. But with her childhood friend Eli Hochstetler insisting she and her baby belong here, will Dori’s path lead back to the Englisher world…or into Eli’s arms?





RECENT!

THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT ~ A sweet historical romance that will tug at your heart. This is book 1 in the Quilting Circle series.
Washington State, 1893
     When Lily Lexington Bremmer arrives in Kamola with her young son, she’s reluctant to join the social center of her new community, the quilting circle, but the friendly ladies pull her in. She begins piecing a sunshine and shadows quilt because it mirrors her life. She has a secret that lurks in the shadows and hopes it doesn’t come out into the light. Dark places in her past are best forgotten, but her new life is full of sunshine. Will her secrets cast shadows on her bright future?
     Widower Edric Hammond and his father are doing their best to raise his two young daughters. He meets Lily and her son when they arrive in  town and helps her find a job and a place to live. Lily resists Edric’s charms at first but finds herself falling in love with this kind, gentle man and his two darling daughters. Lily has stolen his heart with her first warm smile, but he’s cautious about bringing another woman into his girls’ lives due to the harshness of their own mother.
     Can Edric forgive Lily her past to take hold of a promising chance at love?

Book 2 in the Quilting Circle series, THE DAUGHTER"S PREDICAMENT, releases in May.


#ChristianRomance #HistoricalRomance #Romance

MARY DAVIS s a bestselling, award-winning novelist of over two dozen titles in both historical and contemporary themes. Her 2018 titles include; "Holly and Ivy" in A Bouquet of Brides Collection (January), Courting Her Amish Heart (March), The Widow’s Plight (July), Courting Her Secret Heart (September), “Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure” in The MISSAdventure Brides Collection (December), and Courting Her Prodigal Heart (January 2019). She is a member of ACFW and active in critique groups.
Mary lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of over thirty-four years and two cats. She has three adult children and two incredibly adorable grandchildren. Find her online at:

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Tuesday Tidbits: WHAT TIME IS IT, MR. FOX?


This was a game we played when I was young. The object was to reach the front where “Mr. Fox” stood without getting caught. Similar in some respects to “Red Light, Green Light”. The group at the starting line called out their question “What time is it, Mr; Fox?” To which the “Fox”, who had his/her back to the rest of the group, would respond with a time, like “5 o’clock”or “2 o’clock”, or “11 o’clock”. Then everyone had to take that many steps toward Mr. Fox, the question would be repeated with another time given until Mr. Fox responded with “Time to eat you.”, turned, and chased everyone back to the beginning line. If you were caught, then you became Mr. Fox.

The trick was to gauge how big of steps to take. If you took too small of steps, you couldn’t get to the front first and win. Too big, and you could be too close to Mr. Fox and get caught. And the trick for Mr. Fox was to make everyone take enough steps to get everyone close enough so he/she could tag someone.

So why am I telling you about this game? Because like “What Time Is It, Mr. Fox?” where the time was ever changing, so too have our clocks with Daylight Saving Time. It messes with me twice a year, both for “Spring Forward” and “Fall Back.” But “Fall Back” is easier. I do like my sleep. For the following week, I’m trying to figure out what time it is. There is always a caveat when asking the time. “It’s 3, but it feel like 2 to our bodies.” “It’s 6, but it feel like 5 to our bodies.” “It’s 11, but it feel like 10 to our bodies.” So which time is it. For a while, it’s both.


My eyes feel like sandpaper, scratching down my eyes. This time I woke up Monday with one eye severely bloodshot, and it hurts a lot. I also have a head ache. Not sure that’s because of missing an hour of sleep or being confused over what time it really is and my brain trying to figure it out.

So why do we have DST? I heard that back in the day, it was to conserve candles. Then to conserve energy. But, with our 24/7 world society, is it really saving anything? What we don’t use at one end of the day, don’t we use it at the other?

I have also heard that we still have DST because it’s safer for school children not having to go to school or come home in the dark or something like that. But when we change the clocks some children can still go to or come home from school in the dark.

I have also heard that accidents (car, home, work, etc.) increase the week after the time change. They know this because of the increase in insurance claims.

Hawaii doesn’t change their clock because they basically have 12/12 split between daylight and night, so what would be the point. Arizona also doesn’t change their clocks. I’m not sure why. But the Navajo Nation inside of Arizona does observe DST. There are various U.S. Territories who also don’t observe DST.

If you missed my post on some history of DST, here is a link to that post.

Last year in March, in the week leading up to the change, I decided I would go to bed ten minutes earlier each night until I was going to bed an hour earlier and get up ten minutes earlier each morning. Then when the clocks changed, I’d be on the right time. Nice plan, but the implementation of it didn’t quite work out. For one, one of my favorite shows comes on past my bed time so I’m artificially staying up too late that night anyway and it can through off the whole week if I’m not careful. So then I sleep in a little the following morning to make up for that. Then there are the occasional, accidental naps during the week that mess up getting to sleep at night. It was a little easier to adjust but was still challenging.

I wish we could pick a time and stick with it. I don’t care which. I’d be happy with either.


My Cat refuses to participate in DST. Cats are smart.




NEW!
Love Is One of Life’s Greatest Adventures 
Seven daring damsels don’t let the norms of their eras hold them back. Along the way these women attract the attention of men who admire their bravery and determination, but will they let love grow out of the adventures?

Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure, a 1904 road-trip
Zola Calkin sets out on an adventure to be the first woman to drive across the country. Will the journalist tasked to report her presumed failure sabotage her efforts? Or will he steal her heart?

Released December 1, 2018

COURTING HER PRODIGAL HEART
Mother-to-Be’s Amish Homecoming... Pregnant and alone, Dori Bontrager is sure her Amish kin won’t welcome her—or the child she’s carrying—into the community. And she’s determined that her return won’t be permanent. As soon as she finds work, she’ll leave again. But with her childhood friend Eli Hochstetler insisting she and her baby belong here, will Dori’s path lead back to the Englisher world…or into Eli’s arms?
(Book 3 in the Prodigal Daughters series released January 1, 2019)




RECENT!
THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT ~ A sweet historical romance that will tug at your heart. This is book 1 in the Quilting Circle series.
Washington State, 1893
     When Lily Lexington Bremmer arrives in Kamola with her young son, she’s reluctant to join the social center of her new community, the quilting circle, but the friendly ladies pull her in. She begins piecing a sunshine and shadows quilt because it mirrors her life. She has a secret that lurks in the shadows and hopes it doesn’t come out into the light. Dark places in her past are best forgotten, but her new life is full of sunshine. Will her secrets cast shadows on her bright future?
     Widower Edric Hammond and his father are doing their best to raise his two young daughters. He meets Lily and her son when they arrive in  town and helps her find a job and a place to live. Lily resists Edric’s charms at first but finds herself falling in love with this kind, gentle man and his two darling daughters. Lily has stolen his heart with her first warm smile, but he’s cautious about bringing another woman into his girls’ lives due to the harshness of their own mother.
     Can Edric forgive Lily her past to take hold of a promising chance at love?

THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT is now available in ebook and paperback.

#ChristianRomance #HistoricalRomance #Romance

MARY DAVIS s a bestselling, award-winning novelist of over two dozen titles in both historical and contemporary themes. Her 2018 titles include; "Holly and Ivy" in A Bouquet of Brides Collection (January), Courting Her Amish Heart (March), The Widow’s Plight (July), Courting Her Secret Heart (September), “Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure” in The MISSAdventure Brides Collection (December), and Courting Her Prodigal Heart (January 2019). She is a member of ACFW and active in critique groups.
Mary lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of over thirty-four years and two cats. She has three adult children and two incredibly adorable grandchildren. Find her online at:

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Tuesday Tidbits: ALL SKATE!


As a kid I loved going to the local roller skating rink. I would have lived there 24/7 if I could. I couldn’t get enough. Sadly, I was a child with little to no money, so I was able to only go occasionally. I would go with my sister and my friends. I skated every minute I could. Was I an awesome skater? Not even close, but I had fun, fun, fun. 



Until recently, I never really thought about when roller skating began. The 70s? The 60s? The 50s? If you guessed the 40s, give yourself a gold star. That would be the 1740s.

In 1743, a London stage performance had the first recorded use of roller skates. These early roller skates were inline style with the wheels taking the place of the blades on ice skates. These skates worked well to simulate ice skating on a stage where having a large, frozen pool of water would be difficult.

I always thought that inline skates came after the four-wheeled side-by-side ones. But apparently they came before, in the middle of, and after.

In 1760, Belgian John Joseph Merlin invented a primitive inline skate with metal wheels. They were hard to steer and had no braking ability. (No brakes! Were they crazy?)

In 1818, roller skates made an appearance on a Berlin ballet stage.

In 1819, Frenchman M. Petitbled had the first patent for an inline roller-skate design. They weren’t very maneuverable, straight ahead or a wide, sweeping turn. (So people were using these early inline skates for seventy-five years or so before someone patented one of them?) Regardless of patents, people loved skating. Inventors worked for the next several decades to improve roller skates.

Having gained popularity, the first public roller skating rink was opened in London in 1857. (With skates that were difficult to turn and stop? I’m a bit surprised.) 





In 1863, James Leonard Plimpton designed the first turning, duel-axel, four-wheeled skate, a pair of wheels side-by-side in front and in back, often referred to as a quad-skate. (I guess because the early inline skates had only two wheels.) By shifting a skater’s weight from one side to the other, the skater could turn. (Now we’re talking.) These proved to be such a success that the first U.S. public roller skating rink opened in New York City in 1866 by Plimpton himself.

In 1876, the toe stop was patented. Skaters could now stop by tipping the skate forward onto the toe. (Now, we’re talking. I always used my toe stop a lot.) 




In the 1880s, America mass-produced roller skates and public rinks were popping up everywhere. People loved this form of entertainment and exercise.




In 1900, an inline skate with two wheels was patented by Peck& Snyder Company.

In 1902, 7,000 people attended the opening of the Chicago Coliseum public rink. (That would have been very crowded. I think I would have waited for a less busy time.)

In 1911, Paris hosted a 24-hour roller skating endurance competition. (That could have been fun.)



Various forms of roller skating and roller skates have come and gone over the decades; in rinks, on the streets, inline, quad, skates you could strap to your regular shoes. In recent years, there were even regular shoes with a wheel in each heel so a person could walk or roll. Inline skates became very popular in recent decades, but the quad-skates are making a comeback.

Whether inline skates or quad-skates, people have loved skating for over 250 years. I never would have guessed roller skating went back so far.

I tried inline skates as an adult but didn’t like them. I felt as though my ankles were too weak or something. I prefer the old fashion quad-skates. But then inline skates are even more old fashion.

Did you roller skate as a kid? Do you still? Do you prefer inline or quad?



NEW!
Love Is One of Life’s Greatest Adventures 
Seven daring damsels don’t let the norms of their eras hold them back. Along the way these women attract the attention of men who admire their bravery and determination, but will they let love grow out of the adventures?

Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure, a 1904 road-trip
Zola Calkin sets out on an adventure to be the first woman to drive across the country. Will the journalist tasked to report her presumed failure sabotage her efforts? Or will he steal her heart?


COURTING HER PRODIGAL HEART
Mother-to-Be’s Amish Homecoming... Pregnant and alone, Dori Bontrager is sure her Amish kin won’t welcome her—or the child she’s carrying—into the community. And she’s determined that her return won’t be permanent. As soon as she finds work, she’ll leave again. But with her childhood friend Eli Hochstetler insisting she and her baby belong here, will Dori’s path lead back to the Englisher world…or into Eli’s arms?
(Book 3 in the Prodigal Daughters series released January 1, 2019)




RECENT!
THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT ~ A sweet historical romance that will tug at your heart. This is book 1 in the Quilting Circle series.
Washington State, 1893
     When Lily Lexington Bremmer arrives in Kamola with her young son, she’s reluctant to join the social center of her new community, the quilting circle, but the friendly ladies pull her in. She begins piecing a sunshine and shadows quilt because it mirrors her life. She has a secret that lurks in the shadows and hopes it doesn’t come out into the light. Dark places in her past are best forgotten, but her new life is full of sunshine. Will her secrets cast shadows on her bright future?
     Widower Edric Hammond and his father are doing their best to raise his two young daughters. He meets Lily and her son when they arrive in  town and helps her find a job and a place to live. Lily resists Edric’s charms at first but finds herself falling in love with this kind, gentle man and his two darling daughters. Lily has stolen his heart with her first warm smile, but he’s cautious about bringing another woman into his girls’ lives due to the harshness of their own mother.
     Can Edric forgive Lily her past to take hold of a promising chance at love?

THE WIDOW'S PLIGHT is now available in ebook and paperback.

#ChristianRomance #HistoricalRomance #Romance

MARY DAVIS s a bestselling, award-winning novelist of over two dozen titles in both historical and contemporary themes. Her 2018 titles include; "Holly and Ivy" in A Bouquet of Brides Collection (January), Courting Her Amish Heart (March), The Widow’s Plight (July), Courting Her Secret Heart (September), “Zola’s Cross-Country Adventure” in The MISSAdventure Brides Collection (December), and Courting Her Prodigal Heart (January 2019). She is a member of ACFW and active in critique groups.
Mary lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of over thirty-four years and two cats. She has three adult children and two incredibly adorable grandchildren. Find her online at:


Tuesday Tidbits: PROLOGUES, FLASHBACKS, DREAMS, & EPILOGUES, OH MY!

As authors, we are cautioned against using these devices. On one hand, I agree. On the other hand, I have used each of these at diffe...