Inactivity means a Busy Life

Hello Reading Fans!

“Inactivity means a busy life” with me, anyway. Gees, Hobbit King and I have been extra, extra busy this spring and early summer.

It all started with me helping Hobbit King with our honeybees. We are beekeepers (about five years now). We have six hives, well, actually, we have four hives and a half—one is a nuc and one isn’t in use yet. We had a hive to swarm, so we captured the swarm and moved it to a nuc box. (If you’d like to read more about our beekeeping adventures over the years, visit Honeybees and me.)

Hobbit King, my loving nickname for my hubby, read about building robbing screens to use to help young hives ward off potential honey robbers. During the dearth season, honeybees are very ingenious at taking advantage of weak hives. When a hive is young or older and weak, it is harder to fend off those who would steal honey. The idea of using robbing screens enables some protection.

Robbing Screens

Honeybee Hive Robbing Screen
Hobbit King’s design of robbing screens in use on Honeybee Hive No. Three.

This little front piece is a new addition, Hobbit King created based on some reading he has done. He decided that he was going to see how well he could help the bees protect their hives from robbing bees. This particular screen is his third iteration. The first two didn’t seem to help as much as it confused some bees.

This model looks to be doing the trick. The bees that live in this hive know how to leave and re-enter by going up and out or down and in.

The robbing bees congregate on the outside of the screen as they are not sure where the entrance is located and want to fly straight into the hive opening. They congregate on the screen trying to figure out how to move into the hive and steal the honey.

 

Trying out New Recipes

Hot Dog Reuben
Hot Dog Reuben – Yummy!

Lately, I’ve tried to organize my recipes. I have also been trying out new recipes that I have collected. Many of them have been fun to make, tasted good, but I wasn’t impressed enough to take a picture of the dish or consider making the dish again.

Recently, while going through my collection, cutting out the recipes from magazines I wanted to keep, and placing them into my binders (I’ll post how the binder collection looks when I get them done). I came across an issue of Bon Appetite magazine that had a section on hot dogs. Hobbit King loves hot dogs. Hobbit King loves Reubens. What could be better than a Hot Dog Reuben?

This recipe took the Reuben, which is an American hot sandwich composed of corned beef, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and Russian dressing, grilled between slices of rye bread, and turned the hot dog into the delightful all-star favorite. Trust me, the taste is just as good as you would expect! Yummy, indeed!

Wisteria – Frost Bite to Re-bloom!

The late spring freeze this year had killed all of the blooms of our wisteria in late April. I had decided that it must have killed the plant, too. It looked awful. The blooms were withered and brown. Then, about two or so weeks later, I noticed leaves starting to emerge. There was hope. My wisteria is about fourteen years old and I didn’t want to have to start over with a new plant.

One day in mid-May, I was out walking around the property making plans of what I might plant this year. Was I surprised when I looked up and saw the blooms. My wisteria was making a show hidden from view unless I went under the pergola and took a breather by sitting and enjoying the view of Reed Creek. Gladly, I “popped a squat,” as our daughter says. Propped up my feet and enjoyed my surprise! Hobbit King soon found me enjoying the view and joined me.

Wisteria in bloom, May 2016
Wisteria in bloom over the pergola looking out at Reed Creek.

A New Series Begins

And, yes, I’ve also been writing. Many of you know that besides writing fiction, I also am a technical writer. This past June, I managed to finish two different technical writing gigs. The additional time gave me what I needed to put finishing touches on the audio version of The Fire Within, which is in the final stages of post-production. Also Julie, our daughter, worked her magic on the audio cover as well as updating the print cover. Hobbit King was so helpful listening to the mp3s and helping critique the readings.

With the audio version of The Fire Within about complete, I’m working on final plotting plans for my new series. The new series is about Kay “KC” Carson, who is entering her elder years. One day, KC finds herself transported to a new world where she experiences mysticism, magic, and numerology and must learn how to solve some of the mysteries of her life.

As a V. I. P. Reader Club member, you’ll hear first how you can acquire a copy of the audio version and learn more about my new series. Look for an e-mail from me in mid-August.

May you have a gloriously fun July!

Write On!
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The post “Inactivity means a Busy Life” was first posted on Pam’s Blog on Sunday, July 17, 2016.

Make some fire!

Three Things I Did on Sunday

The three things I did on Sunday are listed in no particular order. I ended up doing all three interchangeably. Do you multitask?

Thing Number One: Made dinner and hamburger rolls. The dough sat in the refrigerator for about two hours, it was on its second rise. I punched it down, and then I shaped the dough into different size rolls. Some were the size for dinner rolls while others were sized so that they could be used for a hamburger or tuna fish sandwich.

Note: I had planned to take pictures, but happily, I had friends drop by. And so, I got distracted and forgot to snap the pictures as I worked. Here is a picture of four of the hamburger sized rolls after we had finished taste-testing. They were yummy!

Homemade Hamburger Buns topped with Garlic and Parsley
Homemade Hamburger Buns topped with Garlic and Parsley

Thing Number Two: Updating my Pinterest site—if you haven’t found it or followed a link to it. Do it now!

There you will find a variety of pics that I collected while I wrote The Fire Within to inspire me.

Here is a picture from my Pinterest The Fire Within board that depicts the three women I used as inspiration for the development of Marine, the protagonist in the trilogy.

Actress Scientists
Actress Scientists posted on SciTech

I have started a new board for Book Two – it now has the following working title: Murder on the Blue Ridge and no pictures. I will change the title to something else as the book begins to take shape. I haven’t started posting pictures yet, as I’m still trying to figure out how I want the story arc to flow and I haven’t really found suitable pics yet. Stay tuned!

The premise of Book Two is:

Suppose Marine Letsco learns she was an assassin. As a result, she decides to change her life, and make amends, by becoming a fire investigator for her new hometown of New Brook. While in training, Marine is asked to study and check old fire casualty files. She was asked to determine if the cause of death listed was accurate. She discovers there was a pattern to the fires. What if in Marine’s desire to turn good, evil returns, and thwarts her every move? What if she learns that her life isn’t as easily changed as she thought? What if an arsonist works his plan to kill the only person he knows that can stop him?

Thing Number Three: Finished reading one book—The Peach Keeper by Sarah Allison Allen and worked on finishing another—The Secret Place by Tana French.

These two books are extreme polar opposites. I like them both for very different reasons.

If you’ve not read either, I recommend trying The Peach Keeper first for a taste of magical whimsy, superstitions, and characters reflecting on their past as they try to live down how people used to view them as opposed to whom they are now. Read The Secret Place for ghostly powers and nasty teenage girls in the middle of a murder.

I’m not sure how I feel about The Secret Place. I had struggles with the story flow mainly due to sentence structured. I don’t mean this in a negative way. I loved the way French works her words to deliver a powerful description that makes you think you are in the middle of the scene—like a stealth fly on the wall. Here’s an example:

“By the time we were finishing up, the good had gone out of that. I’d a taste in my mouth and a turn in my stomach like gone-off cider, fizzy and strong and wrong. Not because it was such bad stuff up there, it wasn’t; they were right, Conway and McKenna in their different ways, we were a long way from my old school.”

I find myself rereading paragraphs to be sure to capture each nuance. I’m still reading this one and I have to share I’ve learned a lot from this author and her writing style.

So, that was my Sunday—Good friends, good words, good stories! Hope you had such a wonderful day on this Tuesday, the day after Columbus Day. And the day of the birth of my loving sister-n-law, Jean—Happy Birthday Jean!

Happy Birthday cake
Happy Birthday to Jean and Betsy!

Happy Birthday greetings and hugs to Cousin Betsy who also has a birthday today, too!

Please leave a comment, let me know what you think, and sign up for Pam’s Newsletter by Clicking the link under my photo or click Pam’s Newsletter page to receive a free copy of the recipe for the dinner rolls and a sneak peek at Chapter One of Book Two (title left out until I’m sure what I want to call it).

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Pam

The post Three Things I did on Sunday first appeared on Pam B. Newberry’s My Writing Adventure blog.
Birthday Cake photo courtesy of Tiverylucky from Free Digital Photos . net
Actress Scientist from SciTech

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Make some fire!