The Things I Do for Research


Female ClimberI am tireless when on a quest, and nothing if not determined. In addition to the usual intensive digging for seemingly random but all-important facts, on top of the obviously vital ones, I have picked the brains of historians, anthropologists, archeologists, reenactors… Anyone in possession of the knowledge I require to proceed, beware.

And then there are the treks to sites. Thus far, this has not included the trip to the British Isles my mother would love, our ancestral homeland, so I must rely on friends and family who have been, plus copious research into flora and fauna, etc. There’s a whole lot of ETC in research. It’s like opening a door that leads to other doors, and entire rooms, and I find myself at Pinterest admiring 18th century ladies’ hats and wondering how the heck I wound up here when I’d set out on an entirely different errand. I also admit to a great deal of stalling when I don’t want to actually write, so research instead. Or write blog posts.

Blue Ridge MountainsBack to the sites. When it comes to my American historicals, I have been to all the places featured in my books. I’ve hiked colonial battlefields, including Kings Mountain and Yorktown, was deeply moved envisioning the events that took place there. I’ve toured historic Charleston, admired umpteen old homes all over Virginia and the Carolinas, (grew up in several) ducked into rustic log cabins, hiked mountain trails, and braved some of my greatest fears.

CavernFor the cavern scene in Through the Fire, I accompanied husband, Dennis, and daughter Elise (about 12 at the time) to one of our many local caverns. Bear in mind that I’m claustrophobic and hate these places. It took therapy to get me to use elevators. I once walked all the way to the top of the Washington Cathedral bell tower rather than ride the elevator, so touring a cavern was daunting. I did not find it remotely amusing when the guide, to whom I clung like grim death, turned off the lights to give us the sense of what it would’ve been like in the old days when your oil lamp or candles went out. I didn’t scream because it might alarm the children in the group, but the woman behind me hissed, ‘This is Hell.’ I silently agreed. After the tour was over, Elise wanted to do it again. No way. We never ever went back.

Mabrys Mill--Old grits mill along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia

There’s a mill scene in Enemy of the King, so off we went to visit mills, the older the better. I bought a thick book on mills, coffee table size, for just that part of the book. Over the top? Maybe. But I wanted to get it right. I also draw on experiences I’ve had, and the places I’ve visited. All the hiking and camping outings Dad took the family on came in handy, plus he used to lead wilderness survival courses, so I consulted him when we were out in the wilds of the Alleghenies for some of my NA themed books.

basket of herbs with rosemary

My growing knowledge of herbs and native plants comes in handy. I even learned how to load and fire a black powder musket, in theory. I cannot abide loud bangs and would’ve surrendered at the first shot just to keep from hearing those blasts. My characters are dauntless, but I direct them from a safe distance. And there are real dangers. Mom and I nearly got knocked on the head by an enormous falling limb while walking through the Congaree Swamp. We adjourned to the museum after that close encounter.

horse and carriage -colonial williamsburgApart from the musket fire, colonial Williamsburg is among my favorite places to visit and a wealth of info. The research I went through to write Traitor’s Legacy, the sequel to Enemy of the King, was mammoth. Yes, I had help for which I am grateful, from the head Williamsburg historian, but much of that digging I did on my own. With much assistance from the good folk at Historic Halifax.

If I were sensible, I’d hone in on one time period, learn all there is to know about it, and confine my writing to that era. But I shift around. And every time I do, that means a lot more research. I’m also an avid viewer of historical based films. Gives my eyes a break and my imagination a boost.

If I’m really stalling, I rearrange my musical selections and find something new to add. Music is an important source of inspiration. Seriously though, how many playlists do I require to write that next chapter? Apparently, one more.

Sail on, Silver Bird.

clipper ship

***Colonial Williamsburg, the Blue Ridge Mountains, old Mill, cavern

 

Who Saw This Coming? Sharknado!


SharknadoPoster

So many apocalypse’s are threatening these days, it’s difficult to know which one to hunker down in preparation for.  And that’s not even counting the ‘Real’ one. The other evening I was stressed to the max and seeking some mindless escape, when I happened upon Sharknado at Netflix. Seriously (or not so seriously) the premise in this film is that global warming creates a super storm and a wind spout tunnels sharks up into the sky like the ‘debris’ in Twister and deposits them all over California. They also swim in like giant minnows in the pounding waves, come ashore, and consume people standing ankle-deep in the surf. Or on the beach. Or the dock, or the bar near the dock…and they can jump really high. So don’t lean over–anything.

What were these people thinking? Run for the hills! The crazed monsters had already gone after surfers and there was a lot of mayhem and blood in the water.  And screams, apparently lost in the pounding surf.

You can always tell which ditz is gonna get eaten. Dude, PAY ATTENTION if you find yourself in a horror film. Be sure you have a last name, that you’re not the Barbie or body builder gazing mindlessly at the churning waters, or the droll, but sadly, expendable side kick. Or fishing. Playing beach ball. And don’t even think about venturing into your living room. In this flick, sharks swim up roads, spill through drainpipes awash in the man eaters, attack underneath and through the roof of cars, shatter glass and break through the windows of homes in Beverly Hills. Here’s where the living room becomes a feeding frenzy. They rage on through LA. Never fear, our noble hero is a wily shark fighter and defender of the clueless. Not that he can save ALL, of course.

I confess to not having finished the entire film yet. I’m taking it in installments. One can only handle so much gripping suspense at a time. But I predict Sharknado will become a cult classic, if it isn’t already. It’s bizarrely entertaining.

Now in Print! Plants for a Medieval Herb Garden in the British Isles


Plants for a Medieval Herb Garden in the British Isles CoverAfter exhaustive efforts on my and daughter Elise’s part, Plants for a Medieval Herb Garden in the British Isles is available in print at Amazon (also other outlets).

For those of you who’ve been patiently waiting, it’s here, with over 100 lovely images. Remember, a number of these plants accompanied the colonists to the New World. Many are the herbs we use today, though some of their applications fell into disfavor. Not everyone still seeks a way to avert the Evil Eye, or risks potentially poisonous treatments for a cure.

Book Description: An illustrated collection of plants that could have been grown in a Medieval Herb or Physic Garden in the British Isles. The major focus of this work is England and Scotland, but also touches on Ireland and Wales. Information is given as to the historic medicinal uses of these plants and the rich lore surrounding them. Journey back to the days when herbs figured into every facet of life, offering relief from the ills of this realm and protection from evil in all its guises.~

dill with white aster and heirloom poppiesA Few Amazon Reader Reviews:

 
A perfect resource for gardeners and history buffs alike.  By Dorothy Johnson
 
Plants for a medieval herb garden is a fun, easy resource. I have been making my way through its pages and enjoying every minute of it. I’ve even found some new plants that I’d like to try out in my own garden.
Excellent Source for Herbal Lore,

Beth Trissel delivers detailed and useful information about herbs in the middle ages. Of course, no self-respecting medievalist would be without a thorough knowledge of healing herbs and their uses, and Beth lays it all out for us in alphabetical order.

archangel-michael, old stained glass windowWell-researched Medieval Herbal
I was in the online workshop where Beth first began putting this book together. The information she gave the participants in each session was amazingly detailed and very well-documented. She gave us an early version of this book and I’ve referred to it more than once as a resource for my own novel writing. When I saw the finished product was out and available, I grabbed my copy immediately. If you’re ever lucky enough to attend one of her herbal workshops — DO IT!! Until then, this is an excellent substitute and one heck of a resource. If you’re writing in this time period and location and want to make sure your characters are using historically accurate herbs in the way they were used at the time, you’ll definitely want this book. If you’re simply interested in learning how herbs were used in Medieval times in the British Isles, if you love knowing the history of the herbs you might use every day, or if you’re just learning about using herbs, this is the book for you!

The Writing Journey Behind Historical Romance Novel, Traitor’s Legacy (and why authors are kind of crazy)


TraitorsLegacy_w8945_med.jpg (official cover) (2)

Writing historicals is a way of time traveling and connecting with the past. Rather magical, really. Being drawn to the paranormal, I can’t resist adding a ghostly touch to some of my stories, but the history is carefully researched.

I also write actual time travels. To date, I have 1 short story, 3 novellas, 9 novels, and two works of nonfiction published either by The Wild Rose Press, or myself. I greatly value my editor and publisher, but sometimes I enjoy the freedom of writing whatever and however I want.

Daughter, Elise, formatted my nonfiction titles for print, also historical/paranormal novel, Somewhere My Love, (won the 2008 Preditor’s & Editor’s Readers Poll for best Romance Novel) the first book I had published with the Wild Rose Press. I later took back the rights and expanded the story. Elise does my Indie covers. Mom assists with editing, as do friends.

NEW SOMEWHERE MY LOVE COVER2

I have several critique partners. But when it comes to creating a story, I mostly talk amongst myselves. Authors are a little crazy. I have a theory about writers, those who are on medication and those who should be. Characters are all important and I’ve learned to listen well to them, because if I don’t, they won’t speak to me. How authors who plot out every step of their stories in advance manage, I don’t know. I try to plot. I do. Then I start writing and the story doesn’t go as I’d foreseen. EVER. I do my research, so I have a reasonable idea of what is and isn’t possible in a particular era. When the characters depart from the norm, at least I know what the norm is. And heroes and heroines by definition invariably march to their own drum.

Friesian horse

I suffered the worst writer’s block of my life midway through Traitor’s Legacy when I failed to heed the characters. There was nothing for it, other than to wait until the muse returned. I even wrote a different story in the interim, time travel romance, Somewhere in the Highlands, the latest in my Somewhere in Time Series (awaiting its sequel). My editor must’ve despaired of me ever getting back to her with the manuscript for Traitor’s Legacy, and was delighted when I did.

Enemyoftheking resized

To appreciate Traitor’s Legacy, I must first touch on its predecessor, award-winning historical romance novel, Enemy of the King (ranked third in the top ten BHB Reader’s Choice Best Books of 2009 at Publisher’s Weekly, voted book of the week at Long and Short Reviews, and on the 2010 Best Romance Novel List at Buzzle).

Set in late summer and fall of 1780, Enemy of the King opens in an elegant plantation home outside Charleston, then swiftly moves to Carolina Backcountry. This adventure romance focuses on the Southern front of the Revolution and culminates in the Battle of King’s Mountain. Years before the idea for the novel emerged, I was researching my early Scots-Irish ancestors in the Shenandoah Valley and surrounding mountains during the French and Indian War. My fascination with Native Americans led to my Native American Warrior Series. As my research progressed past the early settlement days, I kept coming across references to Kings Mountain, noting how proud the Virginia men were who’d gone over to take part in the battle. I made a mental note to return later and do further research, which launched me into the American Revolution. I’ve walked the battle grounds at Kings Mountain twice. Very moving.
Terrific Reader Review for Enemy of the King

One account I came across regarding my ancestor’s involvement in the Battle of Guilford Courthouse, NC, was recorded in a journal by my Great-Great-Great-Great–Grandfather Sam Houston, uncle of the famous Sam and father of another Sam. To differentiate between the two cousins, his son was called Sad Sam, because his wife died young of consumption. The other Sam (not yet famous) was called Bad Sam because he was rather wild. Also interesting, the wife of Sad Sam, Mary Russel Rowland, was a copious letter writer. We learned the ‘Dear Uncle James’ she refers to in her writing is James Madison.

JEREMIAH from Enemy of the KingThe Patriot hero in Enemy of the King, Jeremiah Jordan, is named for my colonial ancestor, a captain during the Revolution. The antagonist in Enemy of the King, British Captain Jacob Vaughan, serves with the 17th Light Dragoons in Tarleton’s Legion. Vaughan was such a multifaceted and intriguing character, I decided to write a sequel featuring him. It was always my intent to give both points of view regarding the American Revolution, although I ultimately come out on the side of the Patriot’s. And still do. I’d begun work on the sequel and even had the title, Traitor’s Legacy, and basic plot in mind, but wasn’t happy with my Virginia setting. It didn’t work for the story and I wasn’t certain what would, so I set the manuscript aside and focused on other books.

Photo of Person's Ordinary #2JPG

Then in late spring 2012, I received an email from North Carolinian, Ann See, raving about how much she’d enjoyed Enemy of the King and insisting she had the perfect location for a sequel. Historic Halifax, NC. She also very much wanted me to feature Person’s Ordinary. So persuasive was Ann, that my husband Dennis and I undertook a visit and were given a tour of this charming glimpse into the past. I decided she was right; Halifax was exactly what I needed for the story, as was the old Ordinary. I’d been seeking just such a place. The British Legion, soon joined by Lord Cornwallis with the rest of the army, occupied Halifax in May 1781. This episode in history drew me and I read all the accounts I could find. The bulk of Traitor’s Legacy takes place in the Halifax area during the British occupation, and culminates in colonial Williamsburg and Yorktown.

The Drama and Romance of the American Revolution

While also being adventurous, Traitor’s Legacy is more of a mystery than Enemy of the King, with spies, turncoats, a coded letter, intrigue, and above all, romance.  I am at work on the sequel to Traitor’s Legacy, entitled Traitor’s Curse.  With Traitor’s Curse, I’m back into ghostly historical romance with a lot of mystery. In capturing a reader’s attention, I lead them back to a time and place they may know little or nothing about. It’s my hope, they will go on and do more research on their own, even visit the sites featured in my stories.

These three novels will comprise what my editor terms The Traitor’s Legacy Series. Because Enemy of the King was written before the series was conceived, it doesn’t bear that imprint. But leads the way.

Journey back to the drama and romance of the American Revolution, where spies can be anyone and trust may prove deadly–Traitor’s Legacy.

Ghostly night Sky

***Traitor’s Legacy is coming out on August 13th, from The Wild Rose Press.

***My titles are available from various booksellers, but Amazon has them all.

Person’s Ordinary pictured above.

Scots-Irish/Native American Historical Romance


 

I have a growing selection of Scots-Irish/Native American Historical Romance for your consideration. All lengths. A collection of historical romance featuring those Celts settled in the rugged Alleghenies and the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and the Native Americans who forever changed their lives. Me, being me, I can’t resist blending in a bit of paranormal, but all are solid historicals.

‘A beautiful Scots-Irish healer in the rugged Alleghenies finds herself accused of witchcraft. With the terror of the French and Indian War fresh in her mind, can Kira love a white warrior?’

 Kira, Daughter of the Moon:

Voted_BoM_by_LASR_ReadersReceived a Five Star Review from Long and Short Reviews and Won Book of the Month.

“Ms. Trissel has done it again! One of the things I enjoy most about Ms. Trissel’s writing is her amazing ability to transport readers directly into her stories. Her mastery of descriptive language never ceases to amaze me. “Green-gold light streamed through the rippling leaves while high overhead a yellow warbler trilled sweet, sweet, sweet and the warmth of hay-scented fern wafted on the mild breeze.

After reading this first sentence, I already felt as if I were standing next to Kira in the woods. I could see, hear, and smell everything she did. Completely immersed in the story, I eagerly dove into the pages that followed.” ~Poinsettia from Long and Short Reviews

autumn in the Alleghenies‘The Rugged Alleghenies, A White Warrior, Beautiful Scots-Irish Healer, Unrequited Love—Requited, Charges of Witchcraft, Vindictive Ghost, Lost Treasure, Murderous Thieves, Deadly Pursuit, Hangman’s Noose Waiting…Kira, Daughter of the Moon’

Set among the superstitious Scots in the rugged Alleghenies, the story is an adventurous romance with a blend of Celtic and Native American flavors. Although written to stand alone, Kira, Daughter of the Moon is the long-awaited sequel to my award-winning historical romance novel, Through the Fire.

Cover by Rae Monet~

Blurb: Logan McCutcheon returns to colonial Virginia after seven years in the hands of Shawnee Indians. But was he really a captive, as everybody thinks? He looks and fights like a warrior, and seems eager to return to those he calls friends and family.

Kira McClure has waited for Logan all those years, passing herself off as odd to keep suitors at bay–and anyone else from getting too close. Now that he’s back, he seems to be the only person capable of protecting her from the advances of Josiah Campbell and accusations of witchcraft. And to defend the settlers against a well-organized band of murderous thieves.~

(Logan, the ‘white  warrior’ from Kira, Daughter of the Moon. One of my all time favorite heroes.)

***Available in print and various ebook formats from The Wild Rose Press,  Amazon, Barnes & Noble in NookbookAll Romance eBooks, and other online booksellers.

pipetomahawk

Amazon Reader Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars

Another splendid historical!, October 25, 2012

 
This review is from: Kira, Daughter of the Moon (Paperback)
 

“Beth Trissel has written another thoughtful recreation of colonial times in this sequel to ‘Through The Fire’. Kira lives with relatives deep in the mountains of Virginia at a time when the English, French, and Native Americans are embroiled in constant skirmishes and out-and-out war. Logan was captured by the Indians seven years earlier and returns, now more Indian that white man, to retrieve a cache of gold left behind by others. Once he meets up with Kira, his childhood friend, sparks fly and he will have her for his own.

While following Kira and Logan’s personal battles we meet the best and worst of mankind. Evil and criminal forces threaten to keep them apart, and even kill them. Kira must learn to curb her tongue, hide her strange abilities and develop a strength she never dreamed she would be able to show. But is Logan worth the cost? Will he be true to her and give her a life she will be able to embrace? Can they ferret out the true villains and find peace and safety?

Miss Trissel’s lush descriptions of the rugged mountains, the harsh living conditions, and the uncertain times give life to what our forefathers endured to build a land we now call America. The characters, rugged Scot-Irish men and women, soldiers, Indians, and engaging children, come alive in this romantic adventure of life and love on the frontier.”

Through the Fire:

Through the Fire cover Final4“The storyline of Through the Fire is well-written and uncommonly descriptive. Ms. Trissel took great time and effort to research Indian beliefs and their way of life. Anyone who buys this book will take great pleasure in it.” ~You Gotta Read by Laura

“Through the Fire is full of interesting characters, beautifully described scenery, and vivid action sequences. It is a must read for any fan of historical romance.” ~Long and Short Reviews by Poinsettia

2008 Golden Heart® Finalist

Publisher’s Weekly BHB Reader’s Choice Best Books of 2009

Blurb for Through the Fire:

Will love inflame these two natural-born enemies in fiery destruction?

Passions run deep in the raging battle to possess a continent, its wealth and furs. Both the French and English count powerful Indian tribes as their allies. English lady Rebecca Elliot, having eloped to America with a British captain, finds herself a widow. When she ventures into the colonial frontier with the militia to seek her uncle, she unwittingly enters a dangerous world of rugged mountains, wild animals, and even wilder men. The rules are different here and she doesn’t know them, especially those of the savagely handsome warrior who captures her body and her heart.

Red-Tailed HawkHalf-Shawnee, half-French warrior Shoka, former guide for English traders, is the hawk, swift, sure, and silent as the moon. He knows all about survival in this untamed land and how deadly distraction can be. His intent is to sell Rebecca to the French before she draws him under her spell, but if he lets her go he can no longer protect her. If he holds onto her, can he safeguard his heart? With battle looming and an enemy warrior bent on vengeance, Shoka and Rebecca must decide whether to fight together or be destroyed.

The French and Indian War, A Shawnee Warrior, An English Lady, Blood Vengeance, Deadly Pursuit, Primal, Powerful, Passionate…Through the Fire.

Shoka and Rebecca (2)Excerpt:

For a moment, he simply looked at her. What lay behind those penetrating eyes?

He held out the cup. “Drink this.”

Did he mean to help her? She’d heard hideous stories of warriors’ brutality, but also occasionally of their mercy. She tried to sit, moaning at the effect this movement had on her aching body. She sank back down.

He slid a corded arm beneath her shoulders and gently raised her head. “Now try.”

Encouraged by his aid, she sipped from the wooden vessel, grimacing at the bitterness. The vile taste permeated her mouth. Weren’t deadly herbs acrid? Was he feigning assistance to trick her into downing a fatal brew?

She eyed him accusingly. “’Tis poison.”

He arched one black brow. “No. It’s good medicine. Will make your pain less.”

campfireUnconvinced, she clamped her mouth together. She couldn’t prevent him from forcing it down her throat, but she refused to participate in her own demise.

“I will drink. See?” Raising the cup, he took a swallow.

She parted her lips just wide enough to argue. “It may take more than a mouthful to kill.”

His narrowing eyes regarded her in disbelief. “You dare much.”

Though she knew he felt her tremble, she met his piercing gaze. If he were testing her, she wouldn’t waver.

His sharp expression softened. “Yet, you have courage.”~

***Through the Fire is in kindle at Amazon.

Cover by my daughter Elise Trissel

The Bearwalker’s Daughter:

A Handsome frontiersman, Mysterious Scots-Irish Woman, Bearwalking Shawnee Warrior, Dark Secret, Pulsing Romance…The Bearwalker’s Daughter

~The strange awareness inside Karin grew, like a summons urging her to an untamed place. His gaze drew her almost against her will. She leaned toward him.

“Someone seeks you, Shequenor’s dahnaithah.”

The message rippled through her. And she knew—his was the inviting summons in the wind.~

Blurb: Karin McNeal hasn’t grasped who she really is or her fierce birthright. A tragic secret from the past haunts the young Scots-Irish woman longing to learn more of her mother’s death and the mysterious father no one will name. The elusive voices she hears in the wind hint at the dramatic changes soon to unfold in the mist-shrouded Alleghenies in Autumn, 1784.

Jack McCray, the wounded stranger who staggers through the door on the eve of her twentieth birthday and anniversary of her mother’s death, holds the key to unlock the past. Will Karin let this handsome frontiersman lead her to the truth and into his arms, or seek the shelter of her fiercely possessive kinsmen? Is it only her imagination or does someone, or something, wait beyond the brooding ridges—for her?

(A revised version of Daughter of the Wind)

“Ms. Trissel’s alluring style of writing invites the reader into a world of fantasy and makes it so believable it is spellbinding.” -Long and Short Reviews

“I loved the plot of this story, oh, and the setting was wonderful.”-Mistress Bella Reviews

“I found this book fascinating.” -Bitten By Books

Publisher’s Weekly BHB Reader’s Choice Best Books of 2009 

***Available at Amazon in Kindle .

Cover by my daughter Elise Trissel

The Lady and the Warrior:

Blurb: An abused young wife stranded in the Alleghenies in 1783 is rescued from drowning by a rugged frontiersman who shows her kindness and passion. But is he more than he seems? And can they ever be together?

 

The Lady and the Warrior is a short historical romance story with a The Last of the Mohican’s flavor to give readers a taste of my full-length American historical romance novels. If you like The Lady and the Warrior, chances are you will enjoy Red Bird’s Song and Through the Fire, and Kira, Daughter of the Moon. All have a strong Native American theme interwoven with the plot.

Amazon Reader Review:

5.0 out of 5 stars Really good romance, March 24, 2012

Amazon Verified Purchase

This review is from: The Lady and the Warrior (Kindle Edition)

“I’ve read a few other books written by Beth Trissel so decided to give this one a shot. Really glad I did. I’m in love with this story. It was incredibly touching. A true romance. This author has a way of pulling on your heartstrings. Yep, I got a little emotional. If you’re looking to read something memorable, this tale is for you!”

The Lady and the Warrior is available at Amazon Kindle for .99

Cover by my daughter Elise Trissel

redbirdssong_w4782_680Redbird’s Song:

Blurb: Taken captive by a Shawnee war party wasn’t how Charity Edmondson hoped to escape an unwanted marriage. Nor did Shawnee warrior Wicomechee expect to find the treasure promised by his grandfather’s vision in the unpredictable red-headed girl.

 

George III’s English Red-Coats, unprincipled colonial militia, prejudice and jealousy are not the only enemies Charity and Wicomechee will face before they can hope for a peaceful life. The greatest obstacle to happiness is in their own hearts.As they struggle through bleak mountains and cold weather, facing wild nature and wilder men, Wicomechee and Charity must learn to trust each other. ~

2012 EPIC Ebook Award Finalist

Cover by Rae Monet
 
The first novel I ever wrote and rewrote for years before its publication, Red Bird’s Song is based on events that occurred to my ancestors in the colonial American frontier, and the book of my heart.
 

“This is a beautifully written story filled with adventure and suspense…This book touched my soul even as it provided a thrilling fictional escape into a period of history I have always found fascinating.” –Night Owl Book Review by Laurie-J

“I loved the descriptions…I felt I was there…Many mystical episodes are intermingled with the events…The ending is a real surprise, but I will let you have the pleasure of reading it for yourself.”  –Seriously Reviewed

With Red Bird’s Song, Beth Trissel has painted an unforgettable portrait of a daring and defiant love brought to life in the wild and vivid era of Colonial America. Highly recommended for lovers of American history and romance lovers alike!~Virginia Campbell

pipetomahawk

”I liked this book so much. The author has done a magnificent job of creating both characters and setting. The descriptions of the area are wonderful and put the reader right in there with the characters…I will most certainly read other books by this author.” Overall rating 5 out of 5 hearts Reviewer: Jaye Leyel for The Romance Studio

***Available in print and eBook at Amazon, in NookBook, and from other online booksellers

Author Awards:

2008 Golden Heart® Finalist
2008 Winner Preditor’s & Editor’s Readers Poll
Publisher’s Weekly BHB Reader’s Choice Best Books of 2009 

 

Our July Garden in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia


We’ve been blessed with a milder summer here in the valley and enough rain to keep our all too frequent droughts at bay. Daughter Elise took her camera outside the other day and snapped a lot of great pics. Of course, I couldn’t feature nearly all of them, but here are some of the best.

Cosmos bright lights(Cosmos, poppies, zinnias)

I say, if your knees aren’t green by the end of the day, you ought to seriously re-examine your life. ~Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes

I’ve worn out so many pants in the garden. And shirts, gloves, boots…

Gardening requires lots of water — most of it in the form of perspiration. ~Lou Erickson

That is so true.

Gardening is cheaper than therapy and you get tomatoes. ~Author Unknown

Heirloom poppies from Monticello

(Heirloom poppies from Monticello and larkspur)

There can be no other occupation like gardening in which, if you were to creep up behind someone at their work, you would find them smiling. ~Mirabel Osler

Or talking to herself. I do that a lot while I weed.

The best place to seek God is in a garden. You can dig for him there. ~George Bernard Shaw, The Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God, 1932

Amen.

Tuberous begoniaIn my garden there is a large place for sentiment. My garden of flowers is also my garden of thoughts and dreams. The thoughts grow as freely as the flowers, and the dreams are as beautiful. ~Abram L. Urban

Oh, yes.

Weather means more when you have a garden. There’s nothing like listening to a shower and thinking how it is soaking in around your green beans. ~Marcelene Cox

(Tuberous begonia)

Or whatever is growing. I love a soft soaking rain.

Gardens are a form of autobiography. ~Sydney Eddison, Horticulture magazine, August/September 1993

Gardening is about enjoying the smell of things growing in the soil, getting dirty without feeling guilty, and generally taking the time to soak up a little peace and serenity. ~Lindley Karstens, noproblemgarden.com

Coreopsis tinctoria(Coreopsis Tinctoria)

How fair is a garden amid the trials and passions of existence. ~Benjamin Disraeli

You can bury a lot of troubles digging in the dirt. ~Author Unknown

Half the interest of a garden is the constant exercise of the imagination. ~Mrs. C.W. Earle, Pot-Pourri from a Surrey Garden, 1897 (Thanks, Jessica)

No two gardens are the same. No two days are the same in one garden. ~Hugh Johnson

Flowerbed along road 6***Shirley poppies, larkspur, coreopsis, cosmos, forget-me-nots, and a lot of other herbs and heirloom flowers.

A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself. ~May Sarton

I think that if ever a mortal heard the voice of God it would be in a garden at the cool of the day. ~F. Frankfort Moore, A Garden of Peace

I fully agree.

Forget me Nots(Chinese Forget-Me-Nots)

“Until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.” ~Irish prayer


White Dove and Rainbow“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.” ~ From a headstone in Ireland

“In the night of death, hope sees a star, and listening love can hear the rustle of a wing.” ~Robert Ingersoll

“The death of someone we know always reminds us that we are still alive — perhaps for some purpose which we ought to re-examine.” ~Mignon McLaughlin, The Neurotic’s Notebook, 1960

God's hand reaching out to man

“Let life be as beautiful as summer flowers
And death as beautiful as autumn leaves.”
~Rabindranath Tagore

“What we have done for ourselves alone dies with us; what we have done for others and the world remains and is immortal.” ~Albert Pike

“He who has gone, so we but cherish his memory, abides with us, more potent, nay, more present than the living man.” ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“People living deeply have no fear of death.” ~Anaïs Nin, Diary, 1967

“If the people we love are stolen from us, the way to have them live on is to never stop loving them. Buildings burn, people die, but real love is forever.” ~The Crow, written by James O’Barr, David J. Schow, and John Shirley, 1994

Heavenly light in white clouds and blue sky

“My soul is full of whispered song;
My blindness is my sight;
The shadows that I feared so long
Are all alive with light.”
~Alice Cary, Dying Hymn

“As a well-spent day brings happy sleep, so a life well used brings happy death.” ~Leonardo da Vinci


“Let children walk with Nature, let them see the beautiful blendings and communions of death and life, their joyous inseparable unity, as taught in woods and meadows, plains and mountains and streams of our blessed star, and they will learn that death is stingless indeed, and as beautiful as life.” ~John Muir

cupped hands holding light in the sky

“He spake well who said that graves are the footprints of angels.”
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“The memory of a good person is a blessing.”
Proverbs 10:7

“Until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of His hand.”
Irish prayer

Young woman angel with wings

“Angels descending, bring from above,
Echoes of mercy, whispers of love.”
~Fanny J. Crosby

Angels are all around us, all the time, in the very air we breathe.” ~Quoted in The Angels’ Little Instruction Book by Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994

This post is in honor of my brother-in-law David who died today. Dennis and I were with him when he passed. Peace filled the room.