Thursday, March 5, 2015

Thankful for a Snow Day!

 A lot of people are sick of snow. I get it. Last year I was sick of snow by this time too. If I lived on the East Coast, I would definitely be sick of snow. However, here in Missouri, I was worried that we'd miss out on snow this winter.

Fortunately, in mid-February the snow started coming down, and it hasn't really let up much since. Here's a picture of me sledding after the second snowstorm. That snow was a wet snow. It packed well, but the sledding wasn't great.

The snow we got yesterday was GREAT for sledding. It started with about 2 hours of sleet. Then a slow powder fell all day long. This morning we had a nice sheet of ice and then powder on top of it. It won't last long because the sun is shining bright, so we got our sleds and took to the hillside.

John took an accidental selfie when he was getting ready to film me. I didn't tell him I had my phone in selfie mode because Mickey was taking selfies last night. There's Mickey's selfie on the left. He was definitely being tricky, hogging the space heater.

See the face wrap John's wearing. We call it his Jacob Marley scarf. It's not really holding his jaw on, but it does keep the cold wind out. And yes, although the sun was shining, the wind bit.

So here's my first run -- it's actually my second run. I had tried the hill about an hour before this and decided it was best to eat a little something before so much exertion. That run was not filmed.

This run was exhilarating. The ice under the powder provided almost no resistance. Of course, no resistance means no control. John took a run and found that out for himself.
And here's my last run. This time I had to lean really far to the left to try to keep the sled from veering off into the trees. At the end of the run, I lost control. You can't see it, but I had to wipe out to keep from plummeting into a tree.

We decided to call it quits. Going down the icy hill is one thing. Walking up it is a whole different story.

But we are thankful for some fast snow to end our winter.

Sledding is something we like to do every year. Our sledding adventures inspired one of my short stories, The Big Hill. Warning though -- the story might make you cry.

It's Thankful Thursday. What are you thankful for?

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Mystery Quilt Reveal

Mystery Quilt Reveal

Completed square
I got carried away with the holidays and didn't get as much work done on the Grand Illusion mystery quilt as I had planned. I have one block done and enough components to make three more. I have to say, if I had seen the revealed quilt instead of being introduced to it little by little, I would have run screaming from the building. It's not that it WAS difficult, it just LOOKS difficult -- and scary for a fairly new quilter like me. However, being led through this quilt a little at a time, I understand that I can do pieces that look complicated, as long as I break it down into small enough chunks for my brain to process.

Can you find the Dime Store Novel themes?

I also love the fact that I learned several new techniques and I met quilters from all over the world. I kept it scrappy and I was able to incorporate a number of fun fabrics that relate to our Dime Store Novel world, as well as some that have a personal meaning. One friend has suggested an event after the quilt is done where we display the quilt and read some of our works -- it sounds like an interesting idea.

Will I participate in next year's Bonnie Hunter Winter Mystery Quilt event?  Yes!

In Writing News

The holidays are over and we are back to working on stories and we have an exciting 2015 planned for our readers.  The first draft of Louisiana Snowflake is nearly complete and John is hard at work on the second draft of Striking Angels. Both of these books will be larger than the other books in the Dime Store Novel series -- the story grows and so do the books. 
If you have not subscribed to our newsletter, take a moment to do so. We'll have lots of announcements soon. For a limited time, subscribers can download a FREE PDF of The Canary's Silence, a short horror story inspired by the Bonne Terre mines.