Saturday, May 11, 2013
Star of the New Moon ~~ A tribute to my mother
By LoRee Peery
~There is no one so special as a mom
Since we wouldn't be here without one~
LaVera Reikofski Mosel was a beautiful woman, inside and out. Classy and sophisticated, she looked like the movie stars she modeled her clothing, hair, and makeup after. When Mom was a teenager she worked at the New Moon Theatre in Neligh, Nebraska, and could study those stars of the silver screen to her heart’s content. That’s where she met my father in the late forties, when he took a date to a show.
My absolute favorite family photograph from childhood is of me sitting on Mom’s lap while she read to me. It was taken at Grandpa Mosel’s and we were sitting on an oak dining room chair in front of the buffet. Mom’s eyebrows were arched and penciled, her lips painted, and her hair rolled up and away from her face. I wore a dress accented by a white lace collar, white socks, and leather sandals. We were both engrossed in the book, and there was another closed book underneath, waiting its turn to be read. Mom’s lower lip protruded with whatever she was speaking. My brows were knit and my mouth worked in concentration (probably wishing I was four, so I could read it myself). The snapshot captured her love of reading and her pleasure in passing that love on.
The photo also revealed Mom’s talent as a seamstress, evident in my red taffeta dress. Mom expressed her creativity in sewing and decorating. She sewed aprons for her various waitress uniforms, matching or accenting them, trimmed in lace or rickrack. I remember pink, turquoise, and black nylon dresses, which showed off her tiny waist.
We lived in the country near Brunswick when I was a preschooler. My first memory is of a vanity Mom made me from orange crates. She sewed a ruffle curtain of red calico fabric to keep my treasures private. She also made curtains for the whole house, even one to hide the sink pipes.
Her creativity extended beyond sewing. Once when my 4-H group met at our house, Mom had nothing for a sweet treat. She cut down the amount of cold water in Jell-O and made cookie cutter shapes that we could eat with our fingers. No other mother I knew did that in the fifties.
Mom worked hard. A typical farmer’s wife of the times, she put up pickles, preserves, tomatoes, tomato sauce, green beans, plums, peaches, and pears. Corn was frozen and potatoes put in the cave, some to sprout for planting the next spring. She baked yummy desserts like pineapple upside-down cake. My culinary attempts never came close to her results. Mom couldn’t cut a cake straight, and I think of her each time my knife curves offline when I attempt the task.
Many teenaged girls are embarrassed to be seen with their mothers. I was proud to walk next to mine, and hoped that I would look as good as she did some day. We didn’t talk about boys or sex. She said she trusted me. What a responsibility!
Mom kept her own feelings inside and didn’t talk about her family problems any more than she would gossip about the neighbors up the road. She limited talk about other people, and made it positive. When I was a teen yakking with a friend on the phone, she cautioned me, “What you say today may come back to haunt you tomorrow.”
How much of the woman I am today has to do with who my mother was? I would like to think that I am the star of something, maybe our acreage near Walton. Whatever it may be, if my children think of me the way I remember my mother, then I am blessed.
Proverbs 31:28 ~ “Her children arise and call her blessed.”
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
California author Delia Latham is a Christian wife, mother, grandmother, sister & friend, but especially loves being a princess daughter to the King of Kings. She has a thing for Dr. Pepper & loves hearing from her readers. Contact her through her website, her blog, or over on her Facebook author page (Delia Latham).
Delia writes inspirational romance and women's fiction, and is currently contracted through White Rose Publishing (a division of Pelican Book Group) and Vinspire Publishing.
Her heart. His faith. Love reborn.
With her marriage over and her mother fading fast, Lexi's heart is a fortress. Can a handsome author's faith find the key?
WHAT IT'S ABOUT
Forty-three-year-old Lexi Carlisle’s abusive marriage ended three years ago. Deeply scarred by the experience, and helplessly watching her beloved mother succumb to Alzheimers, Lexi is devastated. After selling her fancy home, she rents a cottage in Heart’s Haven, a special place unlike any other. Slowly learning to live again, she despairs of ever delivering the message of love that burns within her heart for her ever-worsening mother. But Mitch Gaynor, a handsome Christian author, reminds Lexi that with God all things are possible, planting within her battered and distrustful heart the seed of hope for a miracle. But can she open her fortressed heart to God? And is Mitch a part of His plans for her future?
Mitch knew that God had given her a mega-dose of beauty she wasn’t even aware she possessed, but any fool with decent eyesight could see that. He knew her husband deserved to be lassoed to the meanest bull in Texas and dragged clear across the state. Mitch had no use for a man who would mistreat a woman—especially one like Lexi. Even Malinda had only good things to say about her, and for Malinda, that was a big thing.
He also knew that Lexi’s no-good excuse of a husband had divorced her three years ago, in favor of some young thing he’d no doubt treat exactly as he’d treated Lexi.
And with Todd Carlisle out of the picture and already married to someone else, Mitch was acutely aware that he was free to act on his attraction for the lovely woman who now stood in Mrs. Martin’s doorway, staring at him as if he’d grown another head right before her big green eyes.
In fact, he couldn’t think of one good reason he hadn’t done that already. Except…well, doggone it, the woman all but radiated a “no trespassing” policy.
A panoply of expressions chased one another across Lexi’s face. Curiosity battled with concern…and something else. Mitch considered himself a more-than-passable reader of people, and unless he’d lost his touch, he was looking at a whole heckuva lot of distrust.
Lexi didn’t quite like him, and certainly didn’t trust him.
He’s way too handsome. Lexi raked the man’s chiseled features with a sharp gaze. Men are either nice or handsome. Rarely both. And it’s easy to see which category Mitch Gaynor falls into.
Her acid tone seemed to have no effect on him. He stood at ease, one finger marking his place in the novel. His eyes tracked her like a hunter might watch a particularly skittish prey—not quite ready to put a bullet in the poor animal, but determined not to let it escape.
Well, she was nobody’s prey. Not anymore.
“I asked what you’re doing here with my mother, Mr. Gaynor.”
His lips twitched annoyingly, and she realized her slip of the tongue. Now he knew that she knew who he was. Oh, well. She hiked both brows in what she hoped was a suitably challenging expression.
He held up the book. “I’m reading to her, Ms. Carlisle.”
So he recognized her, as well. From Angel Hair, of course, since—unlike him—she wasn’t famous for anything at all.
“I was actually able to figure that out on my own. Why are you reading to her?”
To her irritation, a teasing grin appeared on that movie-cowboy face.
Oh, yes, this guy was far too handsome, with a body to match—not that Lexi noticed—and downright cocky to boot!
Learn why Delia wrote this book
I wrote Lexi's Heart when it became clear that Heart's Haven
(a collection of novellas I co-author with three other writers) would be contracted for a second round of stories. Set once again in our fictional East Texas cottage-rental complex (which is rumored to be a favorite hangout for angels...), Heart's Haven Collection #2 has a holiday theme. My contribution is a Mother's Day story. But our books are romances, so the Mother's Day thread needed to be a background thing, with the focus on the romance. I wanted to feature a heroine who wasn't experiencing love for the first time, and whose abusive past made it hard for her to risk her heart again. A friend of mine is dealing with her husband's rapid physical and mental decline due to Alzheimer's, so I've been a witness to the cruelty of this terrible condition. That's why Lexi's mother has Alzheimer's.
I don't claim to be any kind of medical professional, or to have close personal experience with Alzheimers, but I have seen how painful and devastating it can be. I pray that Lexi's story will be a blessing to someone who is going through such a situation. If Lexi's story can brighten their day and make them smile, then I will consider Lexi's Heart a wildly successful book.
If you'd like to get your name in for the random drawing to win one of Delia's recent books, Jewels for the Kingdom - her first Heart's Haven book - in the winner's choice of format (Kindle, Nook, PDF), be sure to take a moment to respond to one of the questions below, leaving your name and email address.
Ms.Latham would also like to extend an invitation to the Facebook release party for Lexi's Heart on Friday, May 3rd.
Mother's Day is fast approaching. If you're still blessed to have your mother with you, how will you honor her this year on Mother's Day?
If your mother, like mine, has already gone to be with the Lord, will you do something to honor her memory this year?
Are you a mother? What is the best gift you could be given on Mother's Day?
Looking forward to hearing from you this week
Friday, April 19, 2013
Merrillee Whren is an award-winning author who writes for Harlequin Love Inspired. She is the winner of the 2003 Golden Heart Award for best inspirational romance manuscript presented by Romance Writers of America. She has also been the recipient of the RT Reviewers’ Choice Award and the Maggie Award for Excellence. She is married to her own personal hero, her husband of thirty plus years, and has two grown daughters. She has lived in Atlanta, Boston, Dallas and Chicago but now makes her home on one of God’s most beautiful creations, an island off the east coast of Florida. When she’s not writing or working for her husband’s recruiting firm, she spends her free time playing tennis or walking the beach, where she does the plotting for her novels. Please visit her Web site at http://www.merrilleewhren.com connect with her on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MerrilleeWhren.Author
It is a pleasure having Merrillee with us for the next few days. I asked Merrille to let us know what was behind her writing her newest book, A PLACE CALLED HOME.
Here is what Merrillee tells us.
The idea for A Place to Call Home came about when we lived in Massachusetts. One winter day I noticed a huge icicle hanging from the house. It was very pointed, and I wondered whether it was dangerous. I also wondered whether it could be used as a weapon to kill someone. The icicle would melt, and there would be no murder weapon. In the story, no one uses an icicle as a murder weapon, but I wanted to explore how someone would deal with serving time in prison for a crime they didn’t commit. The story evolved from there.
Here is a hint of what Merrillee's book is about.
After serving six years in prison for the false charge of manslaughter in the death of his wife, Kurt Jansen must overcome a world of bitterness if he wants to start a new life. But his first priority is securing a restoration job to pay a private investigator to find the real killer and a lawyer to get his kids back.
Hiring a convicted wife-killer isn't what kind-hearted Molly Finnerty bargains for as part of the prison ministry she supports. However, she begins to believe Kurt's claim of innocence and gradually finds a great deal to like about him—perhaps more to like than she should.
Can they overcome the past and find forgiveness and love?
MORE FROM MERRILLEE
Merrillee has several traditionally published books, but A Place to Call Home is her first indie published book. It is available as an e-book, but it will eventually be available as a print book.
Merrillee will generously give away a copy of A Place to Call Home to one commenter as you share your thoughts about the following.
Since I got my e-reader for Mother’s Day one year, I have enjoyed reading e-books and love being able to take a multitude of books with me on one device.
Do you prefer to read e-books or print books?
CONGRATULATIONS TO SHERIDA STEWART. PLEASE DROP US A NOTE WITH YOUR EMAIL. WE WILL GET MERRILLEE'S BOOK OFF TO YOU.
CONGRATULATIONS TO SHERIDA STEWART. PLEASE DROP US A NOTE WITH YOUR EMAIL. WE WILL GET MERRILLEE'S BOOK OFF TO YOU.