Guest author Mary K. Tilghman

LL&GFrontCover

 

WHAT IS LOVE? Sensible Angela and romantic Patsy have very different points of view in LOVE LETTERS & GINGERBREAD, a historical romance set during Christmas 1831 in Annapolis. For Patsy, it’s the passion burning in her heart for faithless Vincent who fails to write after he goes away. For practical Angela, love is made up of the tasks that fill her day taking care of her mother and little sister.

Eighteen-year-old Patsy prefers pining for Vincent over paying attention to a new neighbor, William, who showers her with kindnesses. Angela considers herself too busy for suitors, until she makes the acquaintance of handsome Gordon.

Christmas will never be the same for these sisters or the men who love them.

And an excerpt–

Since this is a Christmas story, this is a scene that takes place after the disastrous Winter Ball. It’s Christmas Eve and the family is getting ready for the evening’s festivities:

Chapter 16

Christmas Eve

“I really don’t want to talk about it.” Mother’s tone was sharp. She and Ella were in the parlor setting up the table for the Tannenbaum

Ella was quick with a response. “I don’t like to repeat gossip. But I thought you might want to be prepared. I was thinking of the girls.”

 Angela could hear the argument all the way in the kitchen where she and Patricia were stringing popcorn to wind around the tree. Her curiosity got the best of her and she left her sister to stroll as nonchalantly as she could into the parlor. After all, they could be talking about her or Gordon. 

She strolled in, trying to effect a cool demeanor. “What gossip?”

Angela didn’t like the troubled look on her mother’s face. 

“I better get the nuts and apples.” Ella rushed away, her lips pursed. 

Angela picked up a cookie to hang on a limb. “Has something happened, Mother?” 

Her mother waved away the question with her hand. “It’s probably nothing.” 

“Let me decide if it’s nothing. It has you bothered.”

Mother turned to look at Angela, though she did not reply. 

“Has something happened?” Angela disliked repeating the question but all she could think of was what the town wags might be saying after that scene at the ball. And she knew the news of Vincent’s impending marriage must be racing through parlors all over Annapolis. She hated the idea of either her sister or her being the topic of local gossip.

Her mother took a chair by the fireplace. “Sit down, dear.” 

Memorial Day in a small town

memorial-day-354082__340

 

Life in a small town can be pridictable, but sometimes that’s a good thing. Every year on Memorial Day, our Veterans of Foreign Wars post holds a ceremony to honor those who have lost their lives in the service of our beloved nation.

The VFW Commander reads some material that I am guessing is supplied by the national organization. There is always an honor guard in uniform, very solemn as they march in carrying flags.  The past couple of years, there has been one woman as part of this honor guard. This makes me very proud somehow.

Since it is so hot around these parts, the beginning of the ceremony will be held indoors. Then those who are able follow the honor guard outside for a three gun salute and Taps. I confess I am moved to tears whenever I hear Taps. Our post uses a recording, not a live bugler, but it gets me every time anyway.

At the conclusion, everyone goes back inside for a luncheon. It is a potluck, and the tables are always overflowing with yummy dishes. I am planning to bake a cake later today to take with me tomorrow.

Whatever your plans are for the rest of this holiday weekend, I hope you will take some time to remember what the day is really about and offer up a prayer of thanks.

 

remembrance-1057685__340.jpg

Easter traditions

peeps

Are you a Peeps fan? To me, Easter would not be complete without these little critters. I currently have a package in the freezer, so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat them ahead of time.

I didn’t hard boil any eggs this year, but I often pull these out for table decorations on Easter.

eggs1

The two on top in this basket are actual uncooked eggs with the insides blown out before decorating. The others are wooden. No, I did not make any of them myself. I am nowhere near skilled enough to achieve such an artform. These are known as pysanky. This is a Ukrainian custom using wax, similar to batik, to create the elaborate designs.

I’d love to hear about your traditions. In the comments, tell me how you celebrate this holiday.