Blog

October 25, 2013 | 0 comments

We called in a friend who inspects houses and asked him to check ours and let us know if he saw work that needed to be done.  We’re not planning to sell, but we want to take proper care of the house God has given us, and if we ever do sell, we don’t want to pass along problems to the next owners.  Our friend noticed dry rot around a skylight over our master bath and some questionable beams and a corner board on the lower deck.  It took us weeks to find a contractor willing to look at the problem because it was “too small a job”.  The skylight area was repaired quickly and without difficulty, but when the carpenters began removing the questionable areas on the lower deck, more problems showed up.  What started out to be a small job is turning into a major renovation. The deck is now gone, the lower level stripped back to support beams.

It all looked so good from the outside that we had no idea of the rot hidden beneath.

This can be true of life...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
October 18, 2013 | 0 comments

The last two weeks have been heartening.  A few years ago, it seemed only one lone cop and a couple with a new ministry “on the avenue” acknowledged there was a problem.   Sonoma County is so beautiful. Thousands come every year to enjoy the magnificent Pacific Coastline, the redwood, the dozens of wineries, the casino – now two casinos.  How could something as despicable as human trafficking be going on here in such an idyllic place? The answer is:  traffickers go where the money is – especially to affluent areas like this.

Saturday before last, Santa Rosa held its first Forum on Sex Trafficking to inform the public of what is happening in our neighborhoods.  Our leaders are stepping up and going into battle! Rather than working against one another, they are joining forces in a concerted effort to end the trafficking.   We had the chairwoman of the Commission on Human Rights, the Chairman of the Sonoma County Board of Supervisors, the...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
October 11, 2013 | 0 comments

One of my friends sent me an email with “Everything I need to know, I learned from Noah’s Ark”, the title of which was probably inspired by “Everything I needed to know, I learned in kindergarten.”  What I love about the list of the anonymous author is how many things you can learn from one Bible story.

 

Don’t miss the boat.

Remember that we are all in the same boat.

Plan ahead.  It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark.

Stay fit.  When you’re old, God may still ask     you to do something really BIG!

Don’t listen to grumblers; just get on with the job that needs to be done.

Build your future on high ground.

For safety’s sake, travel in pairs.

Speed isn’t always an advantage. The sloths      were on board with the cheetahs.

When you’re stressed, float awhile.

Remember, the Ark was built by amateurs;    the Titanic...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
October 4, 2013 | 0 comments

I have been reading articles on Obamacare and trying to make sense of it all.  I guess I’m not alone.  One telling sentence in our local (very liberal) newspaper said “the most important thing to know is that everybody must buy insurance or else pay a penalty.  You must obtain insurance, either through your employer or, if they do not offer it, through the Covered California exchange or a broker.” 

 

“California exchange” gives me chills.  We are such a well-run, solvent state, you know.  For the most part, we’ve managed to tax and regulate business so they have (or are) fleeing elsewhere.  At last count, the (Demo majority) legislature was coming up with 1200+ new laws.  I wish they’d shut our state government down! But then, I’m sure they would find a way to punish the people just as the feds are doing as they:

 

Close all the national parks

 Keep all military personnel on duty, but delay...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
September 27, 2013 | 0 comments

Over the past twelve years, I have been trying my hand at gardening.  My mother had a green thumb, and my brother definitely has two green thumbs; he can grow anything from Jerusalem artichokes to Asian pears.  Me?  Nada.  But I’m still trying.  

When we moved in, the backyard was a beautiful lush forest of over-grown lavender, butterfly bushes and grasses – the colorful, spiky kind called Mother-in-Law’s tongue.  Our first night, we were welcomed by a resident of said garden – a very large rattlesnake.  Hence, I stripped the backyard of all hiding places so our grandchildren could explore without finding some sneaky snake in the grass.

We put in neat boxes for growing vegetables, each fitted with screen underneath to prevent the other residents (gophers!) from nibbling.  We filled the boxes with good soil and I planted – enthusiastically.  That first attempt brought forth an abundance of (10-12) brussel sprouts.

...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
September 20, 2013 | 0 comments

Whenever I finish a novel, I wonder if I’ll be writing another one, or if it’s time to “retire”.   Even mentioning the word makes Rick a little nervous.  “You’re not a happy camper when you’re not working on a project.”  Really?  What happens if I don’t feel the Lord nudging me into another project?

I have writer friends who can do multiple projects at the same time.  I also know a few who can do more than one book a year.  Some write in only one genre, others in several.  I’m in awe.   I can only manage one book at a time and it takes eighteen to twenty-four months to “finish” it and then sometimes I have to rethink what I thunk in the beginning, not that thunk is a proper word.  Sometimes it takes me six months before I start to “process” the story, let alone start writing the first sentence.  Part of the time I’m arguing with God.  Are You sure that’s the direction You want me to go?  Because I...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
September 13, 2013 | 0 comments

Recently, I was asked about memorable road trips.  My first experiences were with my mom and dad and brother. My parents only had two weeks of vacation a year, and they wanted to visit as many National Parks as possible.  Hence, we spent long hours in a car without air conditioning to get to the goal – wherever it happened to be. Sometimes they drove until after dark and parked the small trailer along the road side (until one night when we could hear a distant river and discovered in the morning it was hundreds of feet down a cliff face a few yards from the trailer steps). Sometimes Dad had to drive all day, day after day, to get to where he and Mom wanted to go.  My brother and I were along for the ride and passed the hours of boredom squabbling in the back seat.  I envied my friends who spent the summer at a family cabin in the Sierras, and swore, when I grew up, I’d never take another road trip.

Now, I love road trips.  One of my favorites was...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
September 6, 2013 | 0 comments

Over Labor Day week-end, I joined a group of writer friends, both men and women, all veterans who have survived the ups and downs and ins and outs of the publishing industry over the last twenty to thirty years.  You’d know their names.  Some have sold millions of books all over the world.  Several had written more than one hundred books, one – over two hundred. I am a fan and sat in awe that I was among such great writers.  We come from different denominations and backgrounds; Presbyterian, Baptist, Mennonite, non-denominational and fundamentalist, Assembly of God and Pentacostal.  Several are or had been pastors.  Differences didn’t matter, and were even a source of teasing.  We were all solidly united in Christ.  

Our host had poured out his frustrations with publishers over the years by creating a paradise with towering trees, fountains and pathways that lead to leafy alcoves and a sand “pit” that felt more like a beach....

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
August 23, 2013 | 0 comments

Now that Bridge to Haven is in Tyndalean hands and moving toward publication, it’s time for me to clear my working space.  To my left is a wall-length bulletin board on which I’ve pinned pictures of my characters.  Some are people you would recognize; others are unknowns whose pictures I found in magazines or newspapers.  I also created the town of Haven, complete with a grid of streets, with pictures I took of stores (giving them new names) and family homes, and where the river runs through my imaginary town.   I love towns with a western/Victorian feel. 

I also have several 3.5 inch binders divided and full of information, and numerous loose notes and bits of dialogue scattered around my typing stand.  All of these things will be gathered and tucked (stuffed) into a box(es) and moved to our storage unit to languish with tax files, Rivers Aviation Services files and various treasures we’re saving for our adult children. ...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question
August 17, 2013 | 0 comments

I’ve been listening to KLOVE Radio since Rick and I moved to Sebastopol in 1985.  It was a small start-up station then, conceived by San Francisco DJ Bob Anthony, with Dick Jenkins as general manager.  I wasn’t a Christian yet, but loved the “positive alternative” music with lyrics that fed my soul and made me dance (or sing along when I was alone in the car).  When KLOVE sponsored concerts in Santa Rosa, I brought my three young children along.  Petra was one of our favorite bands.  We used to sing “This Means War” at the top of our voices. 

I’m still listening to KLOVE after all these years, and still loving it.  They have cruises on occasion.  Rick and I haven’t made any so far, but this year, we decided to jump on board.  Well, not yet – but we have our reservations.  In case you’re interested, check their website. 

Date: January 25 – 30, 2014.  

Miami, Ochos Rios, Jamaica or the Grand Cayman...

Read More | Leave a comment or a question