The sun burned hot in the isolated countryside of Belgium. So hot…. and the horizon lay vast and unbroken. On either side of the car, we only saw open farm lands, and tidy hay blocks stacked in pyramids or speckled in uniform over the fields. Tall, green grass rippled in the wind. The sky topped it all with its fantastic sapphire dome. While my husband drove, I fiddled with the GPS, which babbled some robotic nonsense… Read More

Once upon a time there lived a young girl who was obsessed with Ancient Egypt. She read any book about it she could get her hands on. She dressed as an Egyptian Queen for Halloween. Hieroglyphics mesmerized her, and she even learned how to write her name in them. The lives of pharaohs, and especially their mummy tombs filled with treasures, captured her imagination. She especially marveled at pictures of King Tut and his many treasures. While flipping… Read More

Hello everyone!  As promised, here is the final segment of Part I of my Poem epic – the conclusion to the WWII part of the series (which is brought to you with some mild confusion on the new block editor … so apologies if it doesn’t look the same!) I hope you have enjoyed this first part!  Next year, the epic will return with Part II which covers the First World War. … Read More

I won’t lie to you guys. I’m one of those people who goes a little crazy on Christmas. The pumpkins from Halloween are barely soft before Christmas decorations go up. We wrap the stair banister in holly and garland, lights adorn our kitchen window, and unwitting cats find themselves in various Christmas outfits. I enjoy all of the decorating, but the Christmas Tree holds an extra-special place in my heart. I just… Read More

The first thing we saw at Talbot House was the garden. It was spacious and green, with beautiful flowering shrubs all over the grassy lawn. Butterflies flitted everywhere. It felt like a haven, and I let out a nice exhale.  In my first five minutes there, I saw why so many soldiers from the Great War and the nearby Ypres Salient found peace at Talbot House. As Sgt. Jacob Bennett of the… Read More

When I first began research for my historical fiction novel about World War II, I wanted to include a scene that dealt with the bombs.  I collected many materials – first-hand accounts, histories, etc. and got to work.  It would be a very emotional experience for me, much more so than I expected.  Stories from survivors about these two attacks left me devastated and disturbed.  I could barely handle the accounts of… Read More

Well, it’s that time of year again. The leaves are changing, the nights are cooler, Halloween beckons, and every store is stocked with candy corn. It’s my favorite time of the year, and all that candy corn is a big reason why. Candy corn has been one of my favorites since childhood. Perhaps because I grew up in Iowa, and we love corn in all its many varieties there. Or maybe it’s… Read More

Boy we’re moving fast through the first part of three for my poem epic.  Part I is split into seven segments and covers various angles of WWII.  Here for you is Segment 5 about the Battle of Iwo Jima and the flag raising atop Mt. Suribachi, a moment that I always find moving when I read about it.  Just think, two whole other parts (also each containing seven poems) to go!  Thanks… Read More

If you ask me, the whole thing started off on the wrong foot. We had intended to beat the heat with an early start, but typical travel snares in a foreign country got in the way. By the time we arrived in the small town of Vossenack just inside the German border, it already pushed the lunch hour. The sun walloped on us without mercy. We walked through the quiet streets in… Read More

It was a hot afternoon in the small town of Ypres, Belgium. My husband and I had spent the whole day running around the surrounding countryside and visiting World War I battle sites.  The First World War devastated Ypres and nearby Flanders Fields. It smashed the town itself to pieces, ripped the ground up for miles, and packed the soil with hundreds of thousands of dead. One hundred years later, the scars… Read More