On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

Archive for June, 2017

The Brendles go to the dogs | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on June 27, 2017:

Agility TrialsThe world of training and showing dogs is a subculture that most of us never experience except maybe to watch the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show once a year. My introduction to the culture came when we moved to Florida in 2005 and I met Sue and Sophie. Sophie is a beautiful, pure-bred Miniature Schnauzer, and Sue was a fellow caregiver who had decided that dog training would be fun and might also relieve some of her stress. Sophie was better suited to racing around an obstacle course then to posing and strutting around a show ring, so Sue decided to pursue Dog Agility.

Sophie will soon be twelve years old, and she recently retired with seven MACH titles. According to the American Kennel Club, a dog becomes a Master Agility Champion when she earns “750 championship points and 20 double qualifying scores obtained from the Master Standard Agility class and the Master Jumpers With Weaves class.” I understood very little of what that meant until this weekend when David and I attended our first dog show in West Monroe Louisiana. (more…)

Book Review: A Year of Second Chances by Buffy Andrews

Cover

About the book:

When Scarlett comes across a box containing her most precious items from her teenage years, she’s forced to confront the adult she has become. As a divorced mother of two twentysomethings, Scarlett has to admit her life has ground to a halt! Whatever happened to that girl whose hopes and dreams were so naively displayed in a wish list for her life?

So, armed with the list, Scarlett sets about checking off each and every item possible, determined to fulfill her promises to her younger self. Some are easy. Dancing in the rain? Bring on the next thunderstorm! Marrying her high-school sweetheart? Not so easy when married Jake lives clear across the country!

But what started out as a challenge to herself quickly takes on a life of its own, catapulting Scarlett out of her slump and into a life even her younger self could never have dreamed of!

My review:

A Year of Second Chances, the latest women’s fiction offering by Buffy Andrews, is a beautiful tale of living out youthful dreams regardless of age and circumstances. As always, Andrews draws her readers into the world of her imagination where she paints vivid word pictures and introduces memorable characters who will remind you of people in your own life. In this entertaining story of challenges and fulfillment, she explores many of the issues that arise when a person faces mid-life. I have read a number of novels by Buffy Andrews, and I am always a little bit sad when I come to the last page. A Year of Second Chances was no exception.

About the author:

BuffyBuffy Andrews is an author, blogger, journalist and social media maven. By day, she works for USA Today Network. By night, she writes middle-grade, young adult and women’s fiction. She lives in south central Pennsylvania with her husband, Tom, and wheaten cairn terrier Kakita.

 

Buy Link: Amazon

Connect:

Author website: http://www.authorbuffyandrews.com

Twitter: @Buffyandrews

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Authorbuffyandrews

Blessings,

Linda

Who needs a garden? by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on June 20, 2017:

procrastinationTo say that I decided not to plant a garden this year wouldn’t really be accurate. What really happened was that I procrastinated. Taking it one day at a time, I told myself that I would begin the tilling, the preparation, and the planting tomorrow or next weekend. I told myself there was still plenty of time until now it’s almost time to begin thinking about a Fall garden. The amazing thing is, after all that dawdling, I’ve discovered that I don’t need a garden after all. (more…)

High Mileage | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on June 13, 2017:

High mileage odometerEverything around the Brendle house has a lot of miles on the odometer. Our 2002 Pontiac recently rolled over 133,000 miles, and David’s 2000 Harley has been driven 102,000 miles. David and I have covered a few miles ourselves, but thankfully we don’t have odometers. Still, all of us are showing our age.

David has always taken extremely good care of his vehicles, and people are often surprised at how old our car is. However, time is beginning to take its toll. The lower exterior door panels have begun to crack, and the pins that attach them to the door have weakened. Several months ago when I was on the way to the grocery store, the wind caught the front edge of the panel on the passenger door and peeled it back. I heard a crack and looked in the rear-view mirror in time to see it flying down the shoulder behind me. I did a quick U-turn and was able to locate the panel before it fell victim to an eighteen-wheeler. It had suffered some minor road rash, but David was able to reattach it. (more…)

Friends I haven’t met yet | by Linda Brendle

Published in the Rains County Leader on June 6, 2017:

Rains County Leader

When I first began writing a weekly column in the newspaper, I never thought about the collateral effects of opening at least some aspects of my private life to public scrutiny. I had been writing a blog for several years before becoming City Girl for the Rains County Leader. Although I occasionally received an on-line comment about something I had written, it was disconcerting the first few times someone I didn’t know asked me face to face how my garden was doing or what new antics Kitty had been up to.

It didn’t take me long, though, to begin to enjoy these brief encounters. One of the things I like most about being a writer is knowing when my words have touched someone, even if it’s only to make them smile or stop and think for a minute. It’s really nice to know that something I’ve said sticks in a reader’s mind long enough for them to engage me in conversation about it. In fact, it’s really nice to know that I have readers. Now that I’ve gotten used to it, I enjoy the impromptu conversations I have with friends I didn’t know I had. (more…)

Tatia’s Tattoo Quote – Back Alleys | by Linda Brendle

Dark Alleys

As a successful D.C. lawyer, Tatia’s mission in life was to destroy the sex trafficking trade in small-town America. She knew where to find it. She’d been there. With only apathetic foster parents to protect her, she fell prey to the local pimp. Trapped in the sordid underbelly of a small Texas town, she survived by sheer will. Her friendship with her fellow victim Cindy was the only light of humanity in the darkness until she saw a familiar face. Would Mrs. G, a mama bear of an attorney, still think she had strength and potential? Would Jesse, the young Christian tattoo artist and biker, still look at her with a twinkle in his eyes? Or would they both see only the mark of shame Eric had etched onto her forearm?

Tatia’s Tattoo is a novel about sex trafficking in small-town America. It will be published by Crowdscribed later this year. In the meantime, check out the first two chapters HERE.

Blessings,

Linda

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