Thursday, December 29, 2016

My new dog companion Bounce

My sons and I visited five times to three places to pick out an ideal dog companion for me, and we found him. In the shelter he bounced up and down, meaning "pick me, pick me." He still does that.
Above is a Christmas time photo of us, and below Bounce in a favorite spot, looking outside.

At the animal shelter they pulled two of his teeth and neutered him. He is a Chihuahua Terrier mix and was found as a stray and weighed only 7.8 pounds. After a month at my house he weighs 10.4 pounds which the veterinarian says is the ideal weight for him. She said he must have been skin and bones when they picked him up. He looks a lot like my childhood dog, Chili Rey of Martini, a Chihuahua.
He is very Bouncy now and deserving of his name. I love this little guy and so do my sons and he loves us right back. My cat is fine with him, thank goodness.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas to All

"For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16

Yes, friends, this is my first Christmas without my dear husband, Will, and our sons and I will spend Christmas together. Hug your loved ones please.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Create an easy-peasy Santa's Chair in December

Thank you friends for all your kind comments on my previous post about my dear husband Will.
Here is a post I wrote in advance so I am going ahead and posting it today.

Here is a useful and free idea for helping Christmas to be a relaxing holiday at your house. Can you tell from the photo that I took an armchair and put a Christmas theme blanket over it? Cathy Messecar wrote, in our Christmas book: "At the beginning of December, designate a chair in a quiet corner of your house as the "Santa Chair." Place a comfy afghan, throw pillow, or even a huge red bow on the chair back. Anytime someone in the family needs a break from conversation, household noises, or the hoopla, they can retire to the chair for a few quiet moments. Yes, moms and grandmas, this can be a ten-minute relaxation chair for the kiddos and for you - a time out to recover from the Christmas bustle, too." Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts: Stories to Warm Your Heart and Tips to Simplify Your Holiday." p. 105. And the chair will be a refuge for all including dads, grandpas, aunts and uncles and visiting neighbors.
This is the book we co-authored, by Trish Berg, Brenda Nixon, Karen Robbins, Leslie Wilson, Cathy Messecar and Terra Hangen.
Scrapbook of Christmas Firsts

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Sad news about my husband Will

The worst day of my life was two weeks ago, when my beloved husband Will died unexpectedly.
Our sons and I are in shock, stunned and finding it hard to believe.
The above is a recent photo that shows him smiling and in our back yard.
Below is Will with one of his several mountain bikes.
Our sons stayed with me at our house 24/7 for two full weeks, and then returned to their homes and work. It was wonderful to see them treating each other and me so beautifully and tenderly.
They stayed busy at our house doing an amazing job of home improvements including buying a rug cleaner and cleaning the rugs, clearing out the back addition to our house, buying a big shop vacuum and cleaning and clearing the garage, buying and putting up new curtains in the living room, had our fireplace inspected so we can use it, bought me wood, bought me an Alexa Firestick and taught me how to use it (you talk to her and she plays what you want on tv) and so much more. Together we made 5 trips to 3 places for rescue dogs to find me a dog and we found a cute Chihuahua terrier mix at the animal shelter.
I will post more about Will soon, he was a super good husband, dad and very talented and creative.
Still, there is no way around it. We are heart broken. I am exhausted and sad, sad, sad. But Will and I had 45 years of marriage, so we were blessed in that. Please, hug your loved ones. I know you will.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Rudy Day and a Bible Christmas gift idea

Rudy Day is each month on the 25th and helps us get ready for Christmas.
This is the "ESV Daily Reading Bible: Through the Bible in a Year". I treated myself to a copy last Christmas and I find it very easy to read about 15 minutes a day in this Bible. At the end of one year you will have read the Old Testament once and the New Testament twice. Today I looked at and it is only $6.99.
No, I have no connection with that online store, but love that low price!
A wonderful Scottish pastor, Robert Murray M'Cheyne (1813-1843) created this reading plan. I was stunned to see he lived to be only 30 and yet left this lasting treasure.
I think this Bible would be a great Christmas gift to yourself or anyone on your gift list, and then they could start in reading on January first.
What gifts are you planning to buy?

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Retirement and finances, for those thinking about retiring

I notice when I write about retirement those are among my most read posts. So today I am inspired to write what you might like to read. This post touches on retirement and income and is aimed at people who have not retired yet. I live in the USA so that is the retirement info I know.
If you are already retired leave us a comment telling us how you are doing.
Many people worry that they won't have enough money once they retire.
That could be true if you are in the USA and will only have social security for retirement income. If you will also have a pension and/or investments likes a 401(K) or a 403(B) through your job you may be in good shape financially for retirement. For 30 years I worked at a place that has pensions and that pension is one reason I stayed there. Lots of enjoyment in my job and with my co-workers but some blood, sweat and tears too! I retired from full time work a few years ago. If you are still young you might want to consider working at places that offer pensions, cuz I notice we get old fast. Ha ha!

If you live in the USA one good thing is that when you retire you will no longer pay into social security, so that is hundreds of dollars each month you will not have taken out of your check. Plus you will not have hundreds taken out for Medicare and money taken out for unemployment / disability insurance (in California they take money out for that). Plus where I worked charges $60 a month for parking which of course I no longer pay. That cost was due to my work place being on top of a wooded hill surrounded by forest and grass lands and they built multi-story parking buildings to save the forests, the parking being expensive to construct.
All this is to say that you may have more money in retirement than you thought you would have.
If you will only have social security as income, I hope you are saving money as a nest egg. If your job allows you to put pretax money in to a 401 retirement account be sure to do that. Some employers match the money you put in to a 401 account, that is a great incentive to put in the maximum you can. If it is pretax, that means that 100 dollars put in your 401 account will not result in take home pay of 100 dollars less, but a smaller amount will be taken from your paycheck, perhaps 90 dollars. Even 20 dollars a month in a 401 plan adds up over time. When our children were young and finances were tight, we managed to put in even a small amount like 20 dollars a month.
Hope you like the happy photos of Kermit in the snow and people hiking.
This post is about USA retirement. I am interested in people who live in other countries and how retirement works in your countries. If you don't live in the USA I would love to hear how retirement finances are good or bad in your country.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Horse and flowers in the garden on a neighborhood stroll

Look out friends, I have been on a stroll around our neighborhood and took some photos.
My neighbor's horse made me smile.

I was very surprised to see their horse.
In another garden I saw this pretty Mexican bush sage. The flowers feel like velvet and I have some in our yard too.
Isn't this palm tree handsome? I am guessing this is a date palm. What do you think?
That was a fun walk, and I hope you enjoyed it too.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Heliotrope, a favorite plant and scent

Heliotrope has a sweet scent, light and like sugar. I love scented plants including some Asiatic lilies like Tom Pouce, with beautiful flowers whose scent can fill a room. Heliotrope has a more delicate fragrance and is not overpowering the way some lilies and other flowers are. Once I brought a Tom Pouce bloom to work and a co-worker said it was a bit much so I took it home the next day.
I planted three kinds of Heliotrope this year, which can grow in compact form to ten inches tall or other varieties as tall as 2 to 3 feet tall, and is good in zones 9-11. I put two in pots and will bring them inside before weather gets too cold. The other two are planted in the ground so I hope they will winter over ok.
The above photos are of my True Beauty Heliotrope which I planted September 10, 2016 in a large container. I also planted two Atlanta Heliotrope and one Heliotropium Scentropia Blue. Heliotrope is often called Cherry Pie Flower due to its delicious scent.  As you can see, the leaves are dark green and very attractive. The Heliotropes I mention here are Common Heliotrope or Heliotropium arborescens, not to be confused with Garden Heliotrope or Valariana officinalis (which I have not planted).
Do you have favorite or unusual fragrant plants?

Friday, October 21, 2016

Book Beginnings: Enchanted April

Here is the beginning of "The Enchanted April" by Elizabeth von Armin.
Mrs. Wilkins at her Woman's Club in London on a miserable February day read the following in the Agony Column in the London Times.
"To those who appreciate wisteria and sunshine. Small mediaeval Italian Castle on the shores of the Mediterranean to be Let furnished for the month of April. Necessary servants remain."
Wow, I think her life will take an excited turn this April.
I am linking with Book Beginnings

Here is a quote from 56 percent of my Kindle book.
"Often she had met wives who didn't want their husbands either, but that made them none the less indignant if they thought somebody else did, and none the less sure, when they saw them hanging round Scrap, that she was trying to get them."
I am linking to Friday 56
There was a movie made of this book in 1935 and in 1992.
I just finished reading "The Enchanted April" and it now has a place of honor in my top 25 all time favorite books. Easy to read and full of happy surprises for these four troubled ladies.
Thanks to Jennifer for recommending this book, on her blog at Sparrow Tree Journal

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Mary

Serene beautiful Mary who has been in our garden for twenty years.
I am linking to Wordless Wednesday
Here is quote from Saint Therese of Lisieux, April 1895, which has the image of a shower of roses.
"I have given nothing but love to God and He will repay with love. After my death I will let fall a shower of roses."
I first read this quote quite a while ago on the blog Shower of Roses

Friday, October 7, 2016

Book Beginnings: A Book of Secrets: Illegitimate Daughters, Absent Fathers

This book surprised me in the best way. Most of the people in "A Book of Secrets: Illegitimate Daughters, Absent Fathers" by Michael Holroyd are not very familiar to me. While reading this biographical book I found the people fascinating and began to care about them.
In the hills above the small Italian town of Ravello is the Villa Cimbrone which pulls them all together, including the author and his wife, Margaret Drabble.
Here is the quote for Book Beginnings:
"On 24 February 1905 Rodin dines in London with a new benefactor Ernest Beckett (shortly to emerge, like a butterfly from its chrysalis, as the second Lord Grimthorpe).  page 8
I am linking to Book Beginnings
Some of the people Holroyd writes about: Violet Trefusis (author and lover of Vita Sackville-West). Alice Keppel, mother of Violet and mistress to Ernest Beckett, the second Lord Grimthorpe and famously mistress to the Prince of Wales. Vita Sackville-West and her strong marriage to Harold Nicolson yet she had a passionate lesbian affair with Violet. Eve Fairfax, muse to Auguste Rodin. There are many interesting stories here.
Meanwhile the romantic Villa Cimbrone is a character in the lives of these people.
Here is a link to Friday 56
"The focus of Ernest's life had now moved to the Villa Cimbrone. It was a vision: a magic place to which, he believed, he would always return. For what he sought on his travels, what answered his dreams, he would bring back to Cimbrone, hoping to make it the centre of his life." p.64 (not page 56, I know!). 

Friday, September 30, 2016

Apples and I love the seasons

I love the seasons and even living in California I do experience them.

 I grew up in Wisconsin where the seasonal changes are more dramatic. Is there anything in nature more lovely than when the leaves of trees turn fall colors? Winter in Wisconsin means snow, pure white and snowflakes falling gently or heavily. I miss that. Eventually in my beloved Wisconsin snow becomes grey slush and icy driving conditions appear so that is the down side of cold winters. Seasonal changes are definitely more subtle here, but they are here. My tomatoes give up in September and then I can plant a fall veggie garden which I did last weekend.
May Sarton wrote of the autumn that
"For the joys a garden brings are already going as they come. They are poignant. When the first apple falls with that tremendous thud, one of the big seasonal changes startles the heart."
"Plant Dreaming Deep", 1968.
I am using a patio chair to support the heavily weighed apple tree branches from this old tree in our back yard. Our apples are organic, no spray used. The ones that fall to the ground are very fragrant. When we owned an apple tree orchard the fallen apples were fed to happy pigs.
We don't know what kind of apples these are as we did not plant them, but they are a bit tart and ideal for apple crumble and apple pie. A friend on Facebook suggests these are Gravenstein apples and my husband says she may be right.
If you can tell by the photos, let me know what kind of apples these are.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Autumn: poem by Emily Dickinson

Autumn will soon be here.
Emily Dickinson had this to say about the season:
The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry's cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town.

The maple wears a gayer scarf,
The field a scarlet gown.
Lest I should be old-fashioned,
I'll put a trinket on.

The photo was taken by my husband Will on a trip to Connecticut in autumn.

Friday, September 16, 2016

"My Garden" poem by T.E. Brown

My Garden
A garden is a lovesome thing, God wot!
Rose plot,
Fringed pool,
Fern'd grot -
The veriest school
of peace; and yet the fool
Contends that God is not -
Not God! in gardens! when the eve is cool?
Nay, but I have a sign;
'Tis very sure God walks in mine."

Written by Thomas Edward Brown. 1830-1897. Victorian scholar, teacher, poet, and theologian, from the Isle of Man.
For my dear blog friends with different beliefs, please don't mind this poem, I wanted to share this because it is beautiful. Some poets from Victorian times have a mystical way with words.
The flowers are Canterbury bells and nasturtiums in my garden.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Purple Prince Zinnias

I like the bold rose purple color of these flowers on two foot tall stems, and the dainty yellow flowers in their centers. The first two photos here that I took do not capture the purple of the petals but I like how they show the tiny yellow petals in the centers.

I plant Purple Prince Zinnias from seed every year, directly in a container and directly in the garden soil outside. They grow very dependably.
Below is a photo from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds showing the purple rose color that more closely matches my flowers.

I am linking with Wordless Wednesday

Friday, September 2, 2016

Book Beginnings: A Fatal Grace by Louise Penny

Here is the first sentence for "A Fatal Grace" by Louise Penny, for Book Beginnings at Rose City Reader.
"Had C.C. de Poitiers known she was going to be murdered she might have bought her husband, Richard, a Christmas gift."
On page 56 for Friday 56 at Fredas Voice is:
"I suggest we give each other our unsolved cases and spend a few days reading over them. See if we can find something."
This is the second book in the series and I enjoyed the first one. The detective is Inspector Gamache and he works in a small town in Quebec.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Possum

Possum having a meal of cat food on our patio at night.
The above closeup photo I found on Pixabay. Do NOT pick up a possum, by the way.
I am linking up with Wordless Wednesday
In answer to a question, the cat food is on the patio since we are feeding a stray cat. Usually the cat hurries over and eats every bit of cat food. If we can tame it, we will adopt it (the cat, not the possum). Any tips on taming a stray cat? 

Friday, August 19, 2016

Book beginnings: "Merry Hall" by Beverley Nichols

Above is the cover of one of the 4 books I bought at Goodwill today. These covers are enchanting, don't you think?

Above is a photo I took of the gorgeous set of books by Beverley Nichols I bought at Goodwill today.
The first one I will read is "Merry Hall" which is the first in a trilogy, the second book in the trilogy is "Laughter on the Stairs",  followed by "Sunlight on the Lawn". The other book is "A Village in a Valley."
Nichols writes about the elegant but rundown mansion and gardens he fixes up and the wonderful people who live nearby in the small village. On the dust jacket it says Nichols' writing is "high-spirited, riotously funny, and, at times, deliciously malicious." Just my cup of tea in reading.
For Book Beginnings I quote the first two sentences in Merry Hall: "Some fall in love with women; some fall in love with art; some fall in love with death. I fall in love with gardens, which is much the same as falling in love with all three at once."
Friday 56 at  Fredas Voice asks us to share a bit from page 56. Here goes my choice: "But a glass of champagne, for some mystic reason, is different; it is to wine what Shelley was to poetry; it gives wings to the spirit." This led to Nichols setting a hedge on fire, a rather dangerous feat and a decision fueled by enjoying champagne. My kind of guy, ha ha.
I am linking to Book Beginnings at Rose City Reader

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Sun ornament and jasmine in our garden

The sun ornament is a gift from my friend about five years ago, and the jasmine is a volunteer. I watched over the months as it climbed up the fence and reached the sun.
I am linking with Wordless Wednesday

Monday, August 1, 2016

Volunteer visitor to senior citizens

Sometimes the above photo shows how I feel when I think of seniors stuck in a nursing or retirement home and who have no visitors.
I am posting this to give other bloggers an idea about a volunteer opportunity.
I am a senior citizen myself and have long heard about people living in retirement homes who have no visitors and are lonely. That sounds SAD beyond reflection to me.

For the year 2016 I decided to find a lonely person in one of those homes who I could visit and bring my version of sparkle and joy to. I have a nice collection of fun socks to wear, and bought these for one of the ladies I visit.

You can find a person to visit through your church, or through a volunteer center in your county or city. I signed up with a county program, was fingerprinted, interviewed, and sent to a retirement/memory care home. I think memory care is a upbeat way of saying Alzheimers or Dementia.
The neatest thing happened. The activities director introduced me to two ladies. One had a stroke and can't talk, and the other lady is active in all ways, and deals with Parkinsons disease successfully.
For the lady who had a stroke I bought some fun children's books and read them to her. Her favorite which she points to is about teddy bears and picnics. Since she visited Africa some years ago I bought a book about animals of Africa and she likes this book too.
The other gal and I do some volunteer work in the home's library, putting the books back on the shelves in the right places, and adding new books. We also sit and chat, I help her with her laptop, and we check on the two tomato and cucumber plants they let her grow. Last week she gave me a hug and said thank you for coming, you are a bright spot in my day. I said that she is a bright spot in my day too. Today I surprised her with the socks, and she said she had been wishing for some like this. She put them on and showed them to two people while I was visiting.
Let's spread the joy around.
"We can not all do great things, but we can all do small things with great love." Mother Theresa.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Favorite Coffee Mugs

Eeyore, Keep Calm and Carry On, and Cats.
The coffee and tea mug I use most often is the Keep Calm and Carry On cup, which I bought on Amazon.
Do you have a favorite coffee / tea mugs?
I am linking to Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wordless Wednesday: Tiger Lilies and Sweet Peas

My mother grew tiger lilies so these are favorites of mine and here are two from my garden. Below are sweet peas, another of my favorites from our garden.
I am linking to Wordless Wednesday

Friday, July 15, 2016

Book Beginnings: A Man Called Ove

I am taking part in the Friday book beginnings hosted by Rose City Reader. Here is the link to the Book Beginnings host Rose City Reader  and here is this book's beginning: "Ove is fifty-nine. He drives a Saab. He's the kind of man who points at people he doesn't like the look of, as if they were burglars and his forefinger a policeman's flashlight."
Here is a quote from page 56, for Freda's Voice where she hosts Friday 56. Actually page 56 gives away a bit too much so I am using a quote from page 51 which Ove says to a nasty woman neighbor.
"If you throw that stone into my property, I'll throw you into your garden!"

Here is my review of this book, which I give 5 stars.
A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman. Translated from Swedish to English.
This book captivated my heart. I cheered for the iceberg of Ove to melt and live again. What an interesting guy, a curmudgeon aged 59, who has a strong code of ethics that he rigidly adheres to. He meets neighbors who need his help, resists giving it, but his private code says he must help them. The men in white shirts are symbols of what is wrong in his society and in ours: unhelpful and sometimes vindictive bureaucrats. Force a man into a nursing home. Allow his home to burn down because it is on a boundary between two agencies. Make life a misery for Ove and his wife. Ove befriends a wonderful varied crew, ranging from a young man Ove calls “bent” who comes out as gay, another young man who wants to fix a bicycle to gain the affection of a girl, an immigrant from Iran who likes the prickly Ove, and more. He meets his match in the feral cantankerous cat and they end up adopting each other. This is one of my top ten books I  read this year thus far and I am sure it will remain in my list of favorite books of 2016.
Good news, there is a movie made of this book in 2015 which is garnering a huge audience in Europe and awards for its star. I would like to see this movie, with English subtitles. The movie is in Swedish, I think. An American company has bought the rights to this movie and I am not sure what this means but it sounds promising. If they film a new version I want Clint Eastwood in the role of Ove; he was brilliant in Gran Torino. I know Clint could play age 59!

Wednesday, July 6, 2016


Hi Friends. Flower Lady Lorraine at Flower Lady's Musings mentioned breakfasts recently and that got me inspired to write this post.
Here are some of my favorite breakfasts: Shredded wheat, 365 Fruit and Nut Muesli from Whole Foods, oatmeal and  Cheerios. We like to add fruit in season, raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, bananas. I buy organic berries when I can, or pick blueberries from our two bushes.
The carbs in these cereals are more healthy than overly processed carbs in most cereals and they have no or little sugar.
I had a couple years having pre-diabetes blood sugar levels, so I cut way back on sugar and overly refined carbs and now I am in the healthy range. I read that white rice, most cereals and white bread are no nos if you have any blood sugar issues. So I eat more whole grains which these cereals are. Plus, remember to exercise most every day, for about 30 minutes. Walking is great, and also using a treadmill.

Above is a photo of muesli. Another favorite for breakfast is Quaker Oats 1 minute oatmeal. I am sure any brand is good. For one person take one half cup oatmeal and one cup milk and microwave for one and a half minutes. Stir and microwave 30 seconds more. Add what you like. I add a bit of whipped cream, a teaspoon of brown sugar and some raisins or dried cranberries. Fresh fruit on top is good. Yum, and healthy too.
What is your favorite breakfast?

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

16 books from library benefit book sale

I came home from the book sale to benefit our public libraries smiling like a satisfied cheshire cat and told my husband "It feels like Christmas". I had a bag of books I bought with me, 16 of them.
One is for my friend who is a life long piano teacher, and it is titled "The Piano Shop on the Left Bank", and two are for a three year old friend of mine, "Jonah" about Jonah in the Bible, and "When We Were Very Young", wonderful poems by A.A. Milne.
Here are the titles of the rest. I am not recommending them because I have not read them yet.
I do like memoirs, especially those of people living in other countries. Humor in memoirs is nice too.
"Shark's Fin and Sichuan Pepper" by Fuchsia Dunlop. Supposed to be an insightful memoir of living and cooking in China. I hope she does NOT use shark's fin in her cooking; that is a horrible thing to do, as fishermen cut the fin off live sharks, throw them back in the water and the sharks die.
"Paris I Love You But You're Bringing Me Down", memoir by Rosecrans Baldwin.
"Living In a Foreign Language" memoir of living in Italy, by Michael Tucker.
"Travels with Alice" by Calvin Trillin. I like other books by Trillin.
"Solomon Time: An Unlikely Quest in the South Pacific". A young American teacher brings chickens to a Pacific Island to help people there.
"Nomad's Hotel: Travels in Time and Space", the author's collected articles about places including Isfahan, Mali, Australia and Munich.
"Elizabeth and Her German Garden" by Elizabeth von Arnim, a writer new to me that several bloggers recommend.
"Long Way Down", a motorcycle journey. I will offer this book to our younger son.

Next a book about Jesus and then novels that sound grand.
"Killing Jesus" by Bill O'Reilly.
"The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate" by Nancy Mitford. I read the fascinating biography of the Mitford sisters, called "Sisters" and have been meaning to read these titles, two in one volume.
"Come Rain or Come Shine" by Jan Karon. I love this series and read each one.
"Wit's End" by Karen Joy Fowler.
"Saint Odd" by Dean Koontz. I like this series and this is the final volume.

One thing I do successfully to keep our home in balance is that for each book I bring in to the house, I move one book out of our house. I give the books to friends, to the public library or to the Little Free Libraries all around town. I do the same with clothes, when I buy a top or pair of shorts, I give one away to charity. As of today, 3 weeks after the sale, I have given away 35 books, so I am in good shape on that. That keeps our home's book shelves in balance and not looking like one of those crazed hoarders on a reality tv program. LOL.
I was surprised to learn that our church had a huge book sale the next day!!! So I bought five books there, and that will be in another post. I have to laugh at myself buying these books, but I do love to read good books.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Book Beginnings: Running in Place: Scenes from the South of France

I almost passed this book up until I read the first sentence. My husband did some clearing out and found a box with 32 books, mostly memoirs, in it. He has read them all and I haven't so this is a treasure trove for me.
Here is the first sentence from "Running in Place: Scenes from the South of France": "A man jumped into my wife's tub while she was taking a bath." Well, that captured my attention. He goes on to write "This happened in Paris, in our hotel, at seven o'clock in the morning."
Now I want to know more and maybe you do too.
I am linking to Rose City Reader for Book Beginnings.
On Friday 56 is another to link to at Fredas Voice where we post a sentence or two from page 56. Here is a sentence from page 57, I skipped ahead: "It is a difficult place to describe - a haunted, hard, magical place."