Category Archives: First Matriarch

Life With Sparky: Another Toy

A package lies at my door when I open it.
The package I’ve been waiting for!

I dance inside with it and set it on my sofa, surrounded by grandsons and …
Sparky,
Who sits on the back of the sofa.

I carefully slit the tape and open the box.

“What is it Grandma?” my grandsons ask.

Before I can lift paper or anything out, Sparky leaps into the box and curls up.

“My toy. My box.”

It’s Mine!

I lift him out and reach into the box, barely able to grab out the intended prize before Sparky reclaimed the box.

This shouldn’t be a surprise. I gave him a box when he first came to our home. Cats like boxes. I have found him in boxes, under the area rug, beneath beds, inside blankets, even inside the bathroom sink. He loves to snuggle my feet and keep them warm down at the bottom of the bed, under the covers. (No judging allowed! My son let him do it when he was tiny.)

You think you want to wash you hands?

It is no wonder that when my computer arrived he claimed the box it came in.

Another toy for Sparky.

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Life with Sparky: What Happened to My Clean Floor?

The red dot moves slowly past. Sparky watches as it leaps onto the sofa.

He crouches.

The dot sweeps back to his toes, then off it dances around the room. It bounces up onto the back of the sofa.

He explodes from his crouch leaping and bounding up and across the back, following the dot.

He catches it.
And somehow it slides away from his grasp

He tears after it again.
It eludes his grasp until he plops on the floor, seemingly uninterested.
Until it dances near his nose, his toes, his tail! And he is off, chasing it again.

Thanks to friends who read my blog and made the suggestion, we purchased a red dot laser light. We can now play with him without being scratched and he gets some running in.

My house looks like a 2-year-old lives here again!

Scraps and bits of things I’d never leave on the floor before now lie in wait for Sparky to attack.

Soon after he came to live with us, a stuffed rabbit made its way out of the guest bedroom into the living room. It had been waiting for a granddaughter to return and love on it. Cuddled and tortured, it became one of Sparky’s best friends.

And then the seam split and part of the stuffing came out.

Now the poor bunny waits behind a closet door where Sparky can’t get to it. I need to sew the seam back together.

A strip of paper tied to a length of yarn is a favorite toy, especially when grandchildren come to visit. They drag it around behind them and Sparky chases them. When they are not here, he finds the yarn and wraps up in it.

Yarn!

My bedroom had yarn strung from one end to the other when he found three balls of yarn. It is tangled in a tie and a strap I detached from a purse and left on the floor. When I attempt to untangle the yarn, Sparky is in the middle of it once more.

Like all other cats of all sizes, Sparky loves boxes. His favorite place to play and hide, however, is inside a paper bag. It rattles and makes a noise when he runs into it. It is dark and safe. He can hide there waiting for someone to pass by to be attacked. He plays with them long after they are shredded.

Sparky is smart. He has searched through the toys I have in another room, waiting for grandchildren to come play with them. He has claimed toys from the toy basket: a straw, a stuffed lizard, a plastic man, a piece of string, a big Lego block, anything he can get his paws or his teeth into to carry.

He found two small stuffed animals he loves to play with. One is a little cat, the other is a dog. I think it is fitting that he plays with and attacks the dog.

One morning, I sat writing in my chair. Sparky played with a stuffed animal, the paper tied to yarn, and an elastic.

All of a sudden, he raced past my feet, growling! He ran behind the chairs and around to play with his toys. Away he ran again past me. He stopped to rest. Then, up he jumped and he ran past me at top speed, growling. I think he carried the dog in his mouth.

Where did that big growl come from? He has a loud purr, but I’ve never heard him growl before. He must have decided he’s a big cat again, chasing his prey!

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Life with Sparky

Our son set the small purebred Siamese kitten into my husband’s arms. “You need something to keep you active,” he said, only a little in jest. “Besides, he is scratching the baby.”
Before Jack could do more than pet him twice, the cat leapt from his arms and raced to the back of the house.
“Sparky. His name is Sparky, like the sparks of fire. Look how fast he goes.”
With that, we inherited another animal from our sons.
We already have turtles, and their fish, (We gave them the fish to eat. They kept them as pets!) one son left home when he moved out.
We also had a love bird, left behind when he got married.
Now, we had a cat.
He’s a beautiful Siamese, but he is feisty!!!
When we pried him out from under the bed, he took an interest in the lovebird. He’d stand on his hind legs, trying to see what was in the cage.

Then, on the second or third day, he knocked the cage off the stool it had been perched on for nine years with no disasters.
The cage collapsed.
Eryl escaped.
We thought he was fine.
Wrong.
In less than a week, I found her with his wings splayed out like she was too hot.
We pulled him from his cage and loved on her for the hour we had left before she drew her last breath.
And then, we cried.
Apparently, her escape from the collapsed cage wasn’t without injury.
We are back to two kinds of pets. Turtles, and their fish, and the cat.

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Does Eve Still Like Apples? A Conversation with Eve, Our First Mother

A visit with Eve:

ME: Eve is our first mother, the mother of all living. Through the ages, men have found reasons to say things about her that may or may not be true. In my book, Eve, First Matriarch, I try to set the record straight about this beautiful woman who is mother to all of us.

We have had some questions submitted for you, Eve. Are you ready to answer them?

EVE: I will be happy to answer your questions. I would like all my daughters and sons to know me better.

ME: Okay. First question for you. What was it like to anger God?

EVE: Let’s start with the hard question and get it out of the way!
We were afraid of God’s anger when we partook of that fruit. God had told us we would die if we ate it. I didn’t want to die. Adam didn’t want to die. But we both wanted to be together and have children. We couldn’t know happiness without sorrow. We couldn’t have children without breaking this one commandment.
I was frightened when I heard Father and Jehovah returning to Eden after we ate the fruit. We hid. We feared seeing or speaking to Him.
But, God wasn’t angry with us. He was filled with overwhelming sorrow because there was a better way for us to have moved forward in our progression. Lucifer stepped forward and interrupted it. I was glad not to be in Lucifer’s place that day. Father’s anger came through, though he used a quiet voice to send him from Father’s presence and from Eden. We were all sorrowful that day.

ME: I’m glad I wasn’t there that day. It would be frightening to upset God.
Another question, that goes along with the first:
What was it like to receive God’s forgiveness?

EVE: Father’s forgiveness didn’t come easily. I spent many days on my knees, praying and asking for His forgiveness. I kept remembering the days we spent in Eden. Those were carefree days, no pain, no sickness, and no hunger. But there wasn’t really joy, either.
After the birth of our first child, who Angelique named _, I better understood the forgiveness of a parent for a child. It wasn’t until many years later that I knew for certain that Father had forgiven me. In those years, I remembered my transgression and grieved that I had been so weak as to allow myself to be tricked.
When Adam convinced me that Father had forgiven me, the weight of my guilt lifted. I felt like the weight of many heavy rocks had been lifted from my shoulders. My soul felt as if it could join the clouds floating high in the sky.

ME: I’m glad you were able to feel Father’s forgiveness. It gives me hope that I, too, can be forgiven.
Next question: Is God to be loved or feared? Why or why not?

EVE: That is an easy question. I love Father. He is kind and generous. He is all we can hope for as an example for papas on this earth. He loves His children. He wants what is best for us — all of the time.
We hear Father tell us He is a jealous God. He jealously seeks for us, His children, to find the joy that can only be found in obedience to His commandments. Sadly, people aren’t always willing to obey Him. Father allows those who choose to be disobedient to pay all the consequences of their choices.
Father allows the Destroyer to tempt women and men. When they follow the Destroyer, they are no longer protected by Father. The Destroyer will not support them forever. When they lose the purpose, he allows them to fall into despair.
Those women and men fear Father, for they know they must meet Him in the end and pay the consequences of their actions.

ME: So, God is a loving Father?

EVE: He is. He loves us.

ME: Our time is nearly up. I know you have things to do. A reader wants to know if you still like apples.

EVE: Apples? I have always loved apples. Why would your reader want to know about apples?

ME: Men have taught that the forbidden fruit was an apple. Was it?

EVE: (laughing) No. But I am forbidden to tell you which fruit it was. I have to go. I’ll see you again sometime. Maybe I can answer more of your reader’s questions.

ME: Thank you, Eve.

Next week we will have a chat with Adam, our ancient father.

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What I Learned About Writing

Yesterday I was privileged to share my author journey with a group of home-schooled children who wanted to know how I started writing. We had a good time talking about what books they would write. Some of those will be authors to watch for in the near future.

I share some of our discussion with you today.

I am a reader. I have been all my life. I inhale books, often several at a time. In my early days as a reader, I learned to recognize a good book, although not how to write one.

I don’t remember having a drive to be an author. I wanted to write, but other things were more important then. I loved writing poetry. I tried to write a short story in high school. I failed. Later in college, I took a fiction class from an author and wrote the first chapter of a book. Between then and 2013, I wrote several first chapters, but never managed to get the second chapter written.

In all my years as a reader, I somehow missed the important elements of a good story. It wasn’t until I co-taught a kindergarten class in a private school that had every child write a book that I figured out why I couldn’t finish a story. I forgot the basic elements of story!

What are the elements? Character, setting, problem, and solution.

It seems easy. Now I know. Before I didn’t understand how to do it.

Then I received a challenge to participate in National Novel Writing Month in November of 2013. The challenge is to write 50,000 words in the month. To do that, you have to write like mad without editing.

I took a story I’d tried to put down before, changed the point of view, and remembered the basic elements. I’d think, “What problems would she face?” Then I’d try to come up with a solution to the problem.

I may write differently from many other authors. I don’t outline my books. I’ve never been able to do that even for big research projects in school. Instead, I write into the dark. I decide who my characters will be, where and when they are living, then think of problems they may face. As they try to solve the problems, the characters have other challenges to solve, until they finally solve the major problems of the story.

I write to discover what happened to the people I learn to care about as I write about them. I started Lost Children of the Prophet because children went missing and I needed to know where they went and why. I know now what my end story will be in that series, though I haven’t determined how many more books it will take me to get there.

After that? I have no idea. I’m sure some other character will want me to learn about her and want me to tell her story.

I write books about women because they have been forgotten through time and their stories need to be shared. If you have a suggestion of women whose story has been forgotten, I’d love to hear it.

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It’s in the Eye of the Beholder

Today is Beautiful Day

Yesterday I shared my bad day. I hope to hear from you about your last bad day.
Today is Something Beautiful.
There are lots of things I could choose for my favorite beautiful thing, flowers, children, trees, clouds, the ocean, mountains, my son’s smile the day he adopted his babies, or many others. Instead, I thought of something entirely different: My Parents.

My mom and dad are healthy, happy people, and they are older than most. Dad is 90 and Mom is 86, for a few more months. They spend the summer growing a garden and canning everything so they can share with their children and grandchildren. They live in a warm part of the country and grow from early spring until late fall.
Besides all the garden vegetables: peas to tomatoes, cabbages to squash, and many more, they have pecan and almond trees, peach and apple trees, grape vines, and pomegranate bushes that keep them busy all year long.
Besides all that, Mom crochets and embroiders and sews. Dad reads and proofreads my books, mows the lawn every week, and helps mom keep the house spotless.
Yep. I’d say my parents are beautiful.

What would you choose as something beautiful to you?

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Does it Matter Where Eden Was?

After months of not adding to my blog, it’s time to add to it now. Rather than focus on what is happening in the world, my posts will focus on my books and the world win which they are set.

One of the first complaints I received from a reader is that Eve, First Matriarch had not been set in the Middle East. That is because I don’t agree with current historians on the location of Eden.

Regardless of where it was actually located, the knowledge of Eden’s location would have been lost in Noah’s flood. During that event, when the earth received it’s baptism, the appearance of the land would have changed significantly.

I believe the Ark landed far from the location of Eden and the earliest settlements on the earth. For that reason, I do not include some of the things expected by some. I use the things I believe as a basis for my settings.

Eden could have been any place on this earth. It’s location was on an earth not yet divided into continents and sub-continents. I locate Eden in central United States in my mind.

Does it really matter? Not really. It only matters that it existed while Eve and Adam lived there. After then, it was gone.

Where do you think Eden may have been located? Where do you think God placed it on our earth?

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Independence Day Celebration

We decided to start Independence Day right, sharing the community breakfast of pancakes, scrambled eggs, and sausage. It tasted … good, considering it had to be cooked earlier and kept as warm as possible outside. After that, we sat next to the street on folding chairs to watch the small-town parade. The horses were beautiful. The floats were mostly advertisements, but they threw candy to the children. We enjoyed watching the children scrambling to gather the candy into their bags. The little ones were cute.

After a rest and some card games with my family, we walked to the end of the street and watched the fireworks. Everything else was small town. Not the fireworks. They were great, flinging them into the sky in ones, twos, and sometimes sevens or eights, for nearly 20 minutes. We didn’t hear the “Ohs and Ahs” because we stood far away from where they shot them off. We didn’t need them to enjoy the display.

On the 6th, we climbed into the air conditioned car and drove to Zions National Park. We boarded the tram that takes visitors through the most popular part of the canyon, where private autos aren’t allowed. The tram was not air conditioned, and it was close to 105! As always, we still loved the rugged mountains, the clear streams, and the green trees. We drank all the water we brought with us, and still felt over-heated.

Even with the excessive heat, the views were amazing, as always. We decided to wait to go there again until … maybe October, or next March, when it’s cooler.

 

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And on another note, Finding Peace: Rebecca, Wife of Enos is available for your reading pleasure Friday, July 7—tomorrow. I think you will enjoy it!

What did you do to celebrate this summer?

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It’s Live! Did You Get Your Copy?

It’s live! My first book, Eve, First Matriarch, is now live on Amazon, available in Kindle, paperback, and now Kindle Unlimited. I would be honored if you would order and read it! Check it out here: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MU4KRWT

I am so excited that some of you have already ordered my book. I hope you received it this morning!

This has been a crazy busy week. My son’s car was wrecked, another son needed help with his foster babies, and my computer decided to crash the weekend before my book release! Only taking care of the babies was fun.

It seems my computer fan is dead, and it has gone to the service center. In the meantime, in order to survive, I’ve borrowed my husband’s computer until mine is returned. It has been a challenge to find all my files. I managed to save them onto a new exterior drive—the old one I was using died. It makes my stomach hurt just to think about all my struggles to retrieve all my important files.

I haven’t retrieved everything yet. Still working on that. However, I plan to get the last of the important problems solved today. I did learn one important lesson: Backup, backup, backup, in many places, so if one crashes, another will be available!

So scary and frustrating to think all your work on a book may be lost. For four days I thought my work on Book 3 had disappeared and was gone forever. Finally, after looking almost everywhere, it appeared! I offered my gratitude to my Heavenly Father, for only he could guide me to its location. I definitely believe in an answer to prayers.

I promise I won’t look at my sales page every 30 minutes to see if you bought my book, but I’d really appreciate it if you did. Drop me a line and tell me how you like it. If you give me your snail mail address, I’ll send you an autographed bookmark.

 

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