Archive for the ‘deserts’ Category

The last of the contiguous states to be admitted to the Union, achieved statehood on St. Valentine’s Day, 1912. It is part of both the western and the mountain states. It is the 6th largest and 14th most populous of the 50 states in the United States of America. The southern most part of the state is desert, with extreme high temperatures in the summer. The northern part of the state is mountainous and often sees significant snowfall in winter. (more…)

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I’ve been teasing you all with promises about the publication date for my next book and I promise, I really do, that it is in the works. There have been many roadblocks in this project for some reason, but I believe we’re finally over the last hurdle and just waiting for the book to go live. Hallelujah!! (more…)

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spring in VicksburgSpring is finally here with warm gentle breezes and blooming flowers everywhere. While the Mighty Mississippi River is still REALLY high here in Vicksburg, things are starting to feel cheery and optimistic. The winter doldrums are waning. Birds are building nests, bees are pollinating and life in general looks bright. (more…)

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Over the past few weeks I’ve been introducing you to the main players in my upcoming release On Common Ground. In case you haven’t seen it yet, here is the cover.

On Common Ground cover

I don’t know about you, but I love it!


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Valentines Day

So the BIG long weekend is nearing completion. Time to go back to work. Well, for most of you. I’ve been working all weekend and it’s been great! Full house for Valentine’s eve with delicious breakfast treats on Valentine’s morning.

red velvet wafflesThe red velvet waffles were a hit even though they were sort of a brown-gray-pink color. I used a lot of food coloring too, but they still weren’t all that red after cooking. The batter was a killer hot pink color though. They looked like they were going to be red. Oh well, I just slathered on a little extra cream cheese icing and it was all good. Add some Baer House eggs (a house speciality) and some bacon and a fruit parfait and you’ve got yourself a sweet feast.

Anyway, we had two couples celebrating their anniversary; one just completed their first year of wedded bliss (aw), the other 13 years. That was fun. Another guest surprised me with a small box of chocolates and chocolate covered strawberries. That was unexpected and very sweet!

And my own sweetie stopped to get be a bouquet of candy hearts on his way home from the store that morning. All in all, a good weekend.

candy hearts

How about you readers? Anything worth sharing? We romance writers like to know these things. Fodder for our books you know.

Have a great week!

Word of the Day: Zymotic

Fun fact about me: I’d rather have flowers than chocolates for Valentine’s Day.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, February 2016. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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We all have at least one quirky relative. Some of us have more than one.  In my case, it’s my dad.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Let me begin by saying that I love my dad very much, warts and all. He’s far from perfect, but he’s the person God entrusted my care with so I owe him my deepest gratitude for not killing me as a child. And everyone knows that it’s okay for us to poke fun or our own family, but no one else is allowed to – right? That’s just an unspoken rule.

So now that that’s all established, I want to share with you my Dad’s four favorite words: “I’m throwing that away.”

I know – weird. But my dad has a fascination with junk. He’s a crap hoarder. His house is not cluttered to the rafters, but his sheds, or as he calls them collectively, his “shop,” is a different story. There is not one square inch of uncluttered space in his “shop.”

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

If anyone knows my dad, you can get an immediate visual of this “shop,” but for those of you who haven’t had that . . . ah . . . privilege, let me just say that the “shop” is a series of crudely-constructed sheds, attached together by staples, bailing wire and duct tape, in a row, much like box cars on a train track. When one fills up, he constructs and attaches another, sometimes cutting a hole in the adjoining walls – for walk-through purposes – sometimes not. Collectively this row of mind-blowing dilapidation is known as “the shop.”

My dad will drag home anything. He often does yard work or minor brush clearing for older folks or single ladies and he brings home whatever he uncovers. If someone is moving and cleaning out a garage, my dad is the first one to volunteer to help. He’ll haul home anything left behind, including stuff intended for the dump. Recently my husband and I started cleaning out the ravine below our house. We unearthed a dented hula hoop, a deflated basketball, a plastic oar with a broken handle, and a three-wheeled wagon with a broken axle. My dad’s eyes lit up with pure joy when he saw these treasures in the refuse pile.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

“What’re you doing with that stuff?” inquires my dad.

“We’re throwing it away,” I reply.

“Oh, don’t do that,” says my dad with barely contained excitement. “I’ll take it home.”

What in God’s name my father is going to do with a dented hula hoop and a deflated basketball is anyone’s guess, but I let him load that crap up and cart it home. I didn’t even want to ask his intentions.  I’ve just learned that shit like that is to my dad like manna was to the Israelites in the Desert of Sin. It delights and nourishes him in indescribable ways. (Is it sacrilege to use a swear word in a biblical metaphor?)

That’s my dad – gotta love him. Or as they say in the south, “Bless his heart.”

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

What weird-o family traits are kept in your closet? Come on, spill it. I’d love to hear about your quirky relatives.

Word of the Day: Quandong (it sounds dirty, but it’s not)

Fun fact about me: I like to scrapbook.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, June 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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