Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – 24th- 30th April 2023 – Out and About, Big Band Era, ‘V’ Foods, Podcast, Book Reviews, Health and Funnies

Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed this week on Smorgasbord.

I hope the week going well for you and more settled weather. A couple of lovely days here but still some northerly winds making if feel almost autumnal. Still the garden seems to be thriving and judging by the courting going on between the various species of birds visiting the seed cafe and spa, there will be some fledgelings coming along soon.

I was out and about on Tuesday as the guest of the ever gracious author Marcia Meara. I shared a fairy story, based on my own rocky road to romance with frogs masquerading as princes and unexpected encounters…

I hope you will head over to read and also if you have not been a guest of Marcia’s before it is a wonderful place to be showcased and she certainly makes you feel special…..GuestDayTuesday – Featuring #AuthorSallyCronin – #BloggerExtraordinaire

As always my thanks to my friends who contribute to the blog…

William Price King joined me this week for the Big Band Era with Judy Garland, Victor Young, Cab Galloway and the Shimmy. On Friday William shared the nexgt part of the series featuring Natalie Cole.  You can also find William Blog– IMPROVISATIONWilliam Price King on Tumblr

Debby Gies​ will be here on Monday with a post in the Spiritual Awareness series and this time an exploration of Timing of the arrival of peole in our lives or events. Debby also found some great funnies to share with you. On her own post you will find a wrap up of her trip to Puerto Vallarta and also a recap of the lovely reviews she received during her time away for her latest book Fifteen First Things. D.G. Kaye

Carol Taylor was here on Wednesday with her A-Z of food and the letter ‘V’. On her own blog in Monday Musings Carol explores food waste and also the husbandry and methods involved in getting animals into supermarkets and then onto our plates. In Thursday Thoughts some sneaky ways fast food restaurants get you to spend more money, the planting of trees and prehistoric music making, including a wonderful example of gum leaf blowing by an Aboriginal elder… head over to read all about it Carol Taylor’s Thursday Thoughts.

Malcolm Allen was also here this week with another post reflecting his great sense of humour and his monthly visits are always very welcome.

Joining the team on Wednesday is author Toni Pike with the start of her series on Personal Power and in her first post, Self Valuation… something we are not necessarily very good at… Delighted to welcome Toni to the team.

..Thank you very much for your visits, comments and shares to social media, as always it is appreciated ♥

On with the show…

The Big Band Era with William Price King and Sally Cronin – 1930s – Harry James with Frank Sinatra, Benny Goodman with Martha Tilton, The Waltz

William Price King Meets Music Legends -Natalie Cole – Part Three – The Finale

Carol Taylor’s – Culinary A – Z Rewind – ‘V’ for Vacherin, Vanilla, Veal, Vegetable Spaghetti and Vichyssoise

Podcast #Poetry – The Lives of Cats and Dogs by Sally Cronin

Something to think about – The R’s of Life – Our Relations by Sally Cronin

The Body our Greatest Asset – The Immune System and How it Works by Sally Cronin

Menagerie: A Collection of Thirteen #Mystery, #Suspense, and Contemporary Short Stories by Joan Hall

Book Review Extra – #Thriller – Jack Reacher No Plan B – Lee and Andrew Child, #Fantasy Clay Tongue by Nicholas Conley

#Selfdiscovery #Love #Contemporary – Coming Home by Smitha Vishwanath

#History #1970s #Comingofage – Passages by Mary Clark

New Book on the Shelves – #Shortstories – Jumped by a Deadly Cholla: plus 10 more speculative fiction stories by John Maberry

– #Mystery James J. Cudney, #Shortstories Stephen Geez, #Contemporary #MentalHealth Anne Goodwin

#Dogs Jacqueline Lambert, #Memoir #Breastcancer Jaye Marie, #Poetry Balroop Singh

#Family #Romance Jacquie Biggar, #Memoir Cheryl Oreglia, #Midlife #Change Toni Pike

Hosts Sally Cronin and Debby Gies – Guard Dog and Mary Poppins

Laughter Lines Extra – Host Malcolm Allen – April 2023 – Passwords and Lego


Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will join me again next week… Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Podcast #Poetry – The Lives of Cats and Dogs by Sally Cronin

Some more poetry and flash fiction from my various collections.

This week a celebration of the cats and dogs in our lives who entertain, give unconditional love and teach us life’s lessons.


My band of feral cats who adopted me when we lived in County Meath in the 1990s.

A Cat’s Life

be fair
cats are not
as aloof as
reputed to be.
There are good reasons why
felines don’t give love freely,
as decisions have to be made,
about where you are in the food chain,
and if you should be regarded as prey.
Once determined that you are family,
they will bestow upon you their love,
Overwhelming you with their gifts
of unfortunate creatures,
who dared to cross their path
in the dead of night.
It’s an honour
with a

Sam and his babies, always damp with loving kisses when you picked them up.

A Dog’s Life

so brief,
but so full
of love and joy,
with fun to be had
when a dog chooses you.
Holding them close to your heart,
inhaling that sweet puppy smell,
an ancient bond is reignited,
drawing you deep into their magic world.
They take no heed of the passing of time,
nor do they see into the future.
There are crucial priorities
that have to be considered.
Walks, sleep, play and their food.
But, above all else,
they worship you
as leader
of their

Sam’s face when I told him there were no more sausages……

Life’s Lessons

As I think about my life, I remember fondly those who have taught me important lessons. Their endeavours to mould me into a civilised individual. To domesticate and remove feral inclinations. To instil in me a sense of moral decency. How to enjoy life to its fullest. Imagine my surprise to determine, that the greatest teacher of all was a dog.

Their eyes have evolved
to look deep within our souls;
better to know man.
Little do we comprehend
how much they have to teach us.

©Sally Cronin 2023

One of the recent  reviews for my latest collection.

Carla Loves To Read 15th April 2023

April is Poetry Month and Variety is the Spice of Life was a great choice for me to pick up this month. This is a beautiful collection of poetry and short stories about life, love, getting older, experiencing and appreciating our world and all that live on it. The title: Variety is the Spice of Life is perfect. I don’t want to just list all the wonderful poems and short stories contained between the covers, but will talk about the general feeling and a few of my favourites.

I read this book over a week or so, taking my time to read and contemplate the poems and short entries. I loved how these entries made me feel. I stopped to consider the beauty of the world and life itself. As we grow and change, we find out place and I have to mention the poem: Face In The Mirror and the last line that made me smile and say, yes I have. The last part of the book is made up of several short stories and I loved them all. I think my favourite is The Home Help, that deals with an older woman who is depressed and almost giving up, until she isn’t. The change and what caused it is beautiful and I will remember that message as I get older. There are several themes addressed such as abuse, growing old, family, reasons to live, love and even a bit of magical realism when a cat helps someone get what they deserve. The writing is absolutely beautiful. Not a lot of words, but all are descriptive and powerful. This collection has something for everyone and is one I know that I will pick up again. 


Thank you for listening and if you would like to know more about my books and their reviews you can find them on my books page My books and reviews 2023


Smorgasbord Book Promotions – Book Review Extra – #Thriller – Jack Reacher No Plan B – Lee and Andrew Child, #Fantasy Clay Tongue by Nicholas Conley

I usually only post book reviews on the blog for authors that I am connected to in the writing community, but as I catch up with books on my TBR here are a couple of books I read and enjoyed recently and reviewed on Goodreads. One in particular ends up with thousands of reviews but I still feel it is important to leave feedback as recognition of their work and the pleasure they bring. Both come highly recommended.

No Plan B: The unputdownable new Jack Reacher thriller from the No.1 bestselling authors by [Lee Child, Andrew Child]

About the book

In Gerrardsville, Colorado, a woman dies under the wheels of a moving bus. The death is ruled a suicide. But Jack Reacher saw what really happened: A man in a gray hoodie and jeans, moving stealthily, pushed the victim to her demise—before swiftly grabbing the dead woman’s purse and strolling away.

When another homicide is ruled an accident, Reacher knows this is no coincidence. With a killer on the loose, Reacher has no time to waste to track down those responsible.

But Reacher is unaware that these crimes are part of something much larger and more far-reaching: an arsonist out for revenge, a foster kid on the run, a cabal of powerful people involved in a secret conspiracy with many moving parts. There is no room for error, but they make a grave one. They don’t consider Reacher a threat. “There’s too much at stake to start running from shadows.” But Reacher isn’t a shadow. He is flesh and blood. And relentless when it comes to making things right.

For when the threat is Reacher, there is No Plan B.

My review for the book

I have read every Reacher book so far and I will admit to taking a bit of time to get used to the new collaboration between Lee and Andrew Child, but no 27 has got me back into the groove.

There are all the familiar elements that personify the character of Jack Reacher and considering my own packing for just a weekend away, I still don’t know how he gets away with just a toothbrush.

As always he is unable to let the death of an innocent go, especially when he has witnessed the incident and chased down the killer. This leads to the first thread in the plot which seems tenuous at first but as the story develops the clues keep pointing him in the same direction. He begins to connect with other players in what appears to be a scam on a major scale and as always there are those who are out to stop Reacher from reaching his destination.

The reader is offered some perspective from the other side of this plot to add context. Add in a young man desperate to connect with his past and you join Reacher in a fast paced race towards the climax.

Not sure how long Reacher can sustain such a rigorous outing but I am happy to go along for the ride while he does.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

About the book

From the author of the award-winning Pale Highway and the radio play Something in the Nothing comes a short fantasy of love, shyness, and the secrets of human communication.

Katie Mirowitz is a small little girl with an even smaller little voice. She possesses a deep love for her grandfather, who suffers from aphasia after a bad stroke cuts loose the part of his brain that processes verbal language. When Katie uncovers a miraculous secret inside the pages of her grandfather’s old journal, as well as an ancient key, she goes out into the woods in search of answers — hoping to uncover a mythical being that, if it exists, may just have the ability to grant wishes.

My review for the book

This short fantasy about a young girl’s love for her who has suffered a devastating stroke and can no longer communicate verbally, is a demonstration of love over fear and the generosity of spirit.

He hides from her a story that intrigues her about the past and having read behind his back, this young girl overcomes her own timidity to accomplish the impossible.

The characters are wonderfully drawn and engage the reader immediately. We feel the grandfather’s frustration with his lack of ability to communicate but also his deep connection with his granddaughter who makes him laugh and pretends to understand every word. She in turn shows herself to be a warrior where he is concerned and braves the night to bring him peace.

This is a wonderful story and my own complaint is that it is too short. Highly recommended.

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon USAnd: Amazon UK


Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books… Sally


Smorgasbord Book Promotions – Meet the Authors 2023 -#Travel #Dogs Jacqueline Lambert, #Memoir #Breastcancer Jaye Marie, #Poetry Balroop Singh

Welcome to the 2023 series of meet the authors. This series offers me the opportunity to not just share my personal recommendation for the author, but to also check for new books I might have missed, changes to biographies and profile photos and check links.

I also I hope will introduce you to previously unknown authors to you and their books. As the curator of a towering TBR like most of you, I hope it will also encourage you to move books waiting in line up the queue.

The first author today Jacqueline Lambert,  invites us to join her and her family… husband and fur babies on a trip around Europe in a mobile home and her books and posts are highly entertaining.

Meet Jacqueline Lambert

Jacqueline (Jackie) Lambert is an award-winning travel writer, adventure traveller, and dogmother, who loves history and curious facts.

B.C. (Before Canines) she hurtled, slid, submerged and threw herself off bits of every continent except Antarctica. Even though she was single at the time, she asked for – and was granted – ‘maternity leave’ to backpack around Fiji, Australia, and New Zealand.

A.D. (After Dog), with husband Mark, she gave up work to become an Adventure Caravanner. With The Fab Four, their four pups in tow, their stated aim is: To Boldly Go Where No Van Has Gone Before.

Jackie has published six light-hearted memoirs about her travels since quitting work: Fur Babies in France, Dog on the Rhine, Dogs ‘n’ Dracula, It Never Rains But It Paws, To Hel In A Hound Cart, and Pups on Piste.

Her forthcoming books will chronicle her Brexit-busting plan to convert a 24.5-tonne army truck and drive to Mongolia.

A keen off piste skier and windsurfer, Jackie is the wordsmith behind her own travel blog, She has contributed to several anthologies, and also writes articles and posts for publications such as Eurotunnel Le Shuttle Newsletter and Dog Friendly Magazine.

A selection of books by  Jacqueline Lambert

My review for Book One Adenture Caravanning in France

This book is a very entertaining and informative guide to caravanning with four dogs as companions through France.

Never having been on a caravan holiday, I was ignorant of all the technical requirements needed to not just tow this home on wheels, but manoeuvre it on and off pitches, keep it level, attach all the necessary services and avoid damaging critical pieces of the undercarriage.

The author shares her adventures for the preparation of both caravan and drivers before embarking on an ambitious debut extended tour of France. Daunting enough for the novice caravanner but with four dogs in the mix, quite a logistical challenge.

Whilst excellent information on the technical aspects are included, it is accompanied by an easy going and very humourous narration with some very witty double entendres thrown in for good measure.

For those who are planning a touring holiday of France in a caravan the book has a wealth of information on the best campsites for both scenery and facilities, especially when dogs are not always welcome. Certainly a pack is not usually considered to be acceptable despite the four in question being not only adorable but extremely well behaved. Whilst usually the case, apparently fox poop is the exception and then all bets are off. This can be a problem when you find yourself without a water connection and therefore no showers!

I know France reasonably well, but clearly you get to see a great deal more of the coast and inland areas than visits to the usual touristy hotspots. The book left me yearning for the open road and the freedom to stop in more out of the way places where campsites are the only option to stay for the night. A home on wheels definitely has its advantages, and again with four dogs who love to swim and run the beaches, the only sensible option if you take them with you, as hotels would be out of the question.

This is just the first book in the series and I am very much looking forward to reading the others. I finished this one with a smile on my face and a renewed desire for more travel adventures. I can highly recommend this honest, well written and amusing real life adventure.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Jacqueline: Goodreads – Blog: Worldwide WalkiesFacebook: Jacqueline Lambert Author – Twitter: @JLambertAuthor

The next author, Jaye Marie, writes thrillers and mysteries but also shared her very personal memoir about her breast cancer diagnosis and treatment..Recommended for every woman and in particular those who are facing the same diagnosis.

Meet Jaye Marie

Jaye Marie is affectionately known as the giant redwood, probably because she is very tall, but also because of her love for trees. Most afternoons she can be found repotting or taking care of her bonsai collection, but her love of detective mysteries soon brings her back indoors. She has written three fiction novels in this genre, Nine Lives, Out of Time and Crossfire and is about to publish Silent Payback, her fourth book.

She spends any free time learning everything she can about self-publishing, and despite all the obstacles, she never gives up on anything and is as stubborn as a mule

She also enjoy running a website/blog and all the wonderful people she continues to meet from all around the world. She learns something new every single day and it is much appreciated.

Books by Jaye Marie

My review for Apple Blossom

Receiving the diagnosis of cancer is everyone’s fear. Jaye Marie shares her journey through this frightening experience from the first examination and her treatments at Queen Alexander hospital in Portsmouth with honesty and courage. A journal such as this is so important, not just as a way to document the experiences of those living through this devastating illness, but for those who might be at the start of that journey. Half the battle is the fear associated with the diagnosis, and at times the lack of information available as the medical professionals are understandably reluctant to commit themselves to a definitive prognosis. Whilst it is frightening, being informed is a key factor in getting through the treatment and remaining positive about the future. Jaye Marie does an excellent job and whilst the book is a short read it is filled with heartfelt inspiration.

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow Jaye Marie : Goodreads – Jaye Marie: WordPress Blog – Twitter: @jaydawes2

Balroop Singh is a poet and author who captures human emotions and complexities beautifully.

Meet Balroop Singh

Balroop Singh, an educator, a poet and an author always had a passion for writing. She would jot down her reflections on a piece of paper and forget about them till each drawer of her home started overflowing with poetic reminders, popping out at will! The world of her imagination has a queer connection with realism. She could envision the images of her own poetry while teaching the poems. Her dreams saw the light of the day when she published her first poetry book: ‘Sublime Shadows Of Life.’ She has always lived through her heart. She is a great nature lover; she loves to watch birds flying home. The sunsets allure her with their varied hues that they lend to the sky. She can spend endless hours listening to the rustling of leaves and the sound of waterfalls. She lives in California.

Books by Balroop Singh


My review for Hues of Hope

Balroop Singh writes poetry not just from her heart but verse that touches the hearts of those who read it.

There are so many elements in her verse we can all relate to. The love of nature with its emotional and physical impact on us with its raw beauty and power, the variations on the theme of love and relationships, and the chains that bind us created by expectations of our own or others. The author shares her thoughts on finding our own identity, conquering pain, finding forgiveness and the sanctity of family. Each tells a story and all highlight the author’s ability to appreciate and understand human nature.

The collecton is divided into these areas of nature and the human condition and that provides a flow that moves you seamlessly from one poem to the next. Some of my favourites include Tread Softly Here, Magic, A Concert, When Love Whispered, and Don’t Dwell On It! Really?

One poem in particular struck me with its emotional elements. The Golden Cage

Trapped in the golden cage
The cage of unfulfilled desires
The cage of love and expectations
The cage with vast vistas
Each door so welcoming
Yet so deceptive 

This is a lovely collection of poems and I can highly recommend.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – and : Amazon UK – Follow Balroop : Goodreads – blog:Balroop Singh on WordPress – Twitter: @BalroopShado


Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books..Sally

Smorgasbord Book Promotions – Meet the Authors 2023 – #Mystery James J. Cudney, #Shortstories Stephen Geez, #Contemporary #MentalHealth Anne Goodwin

Welcome to the 2023 series of meet the authors. This series offers me the opportunity to not just share my personal recommendation for the author, but to also check for new books I might have missed, changes to biographies and profile photos and check links.

I also I hope will introduce you to previously unknown authors to you and their books. As the curator of a towering TBR like most of you, I hope it will also encourage you to move books waiting in line up the queue.

The first author today is James J. Cudney who has some stand alone novels and also an intriguing mystery series.

Meet James J. Cudney

James is my given name; most call me Jay. I grew up on Long Island, lived in New York City for over a decade, and currently live in Stamford, CT, but I’ve traveled all across the US (and various parts of the world). After college, I began working in technology and business operations in the sports, entertainment, media, retail, and hospitality industries. Although I enjoy my job, I also want to re-focus on my passions: telling stories and connecting people through literature.

In 2017, I published my debut novel, Watching Glass Shatter, a contemporary fiction family drama with elements of mystery, suspense, humor, and romance. The sequel, Hiding Cracked Glass, released exactly three years later in 2020. I’ve also written another family drama novel, Father Figure, and created the Braxton Campus Mysteries, a light investigation series about a humorous thirty-something guy dealing with murders and the drama of a small town. I’ve also co-authored a book, Weathering Old Souls, with the wonderful Didi Oviatt.

Most of my books are available in hardcover, paperback, electronic, and audiobook formats, as well as in a variety of bookstores. We’ve begun translating into Portuguese, Spanish, German, Greek, and Italian for some of the books too. To see samples or receive news from my current and upcoming books, please subscribe with your email address at my website: James J. Cudney

Outside of writing, I’m an avid genealogist (discovered 2,500 family members going back about 250 years) and cook (I find it so hard to follow a recipe). I love to read; between Goodreads and my blog at  This is my Truth Now, I have over 1,000 book reviews which will give you a full flavor for my voice and style. On my blog, I share several fun features, including the Book Bucket List, Tips & Advice, Author Spotlights & Book Alerts, and the 365 Daily Challenge, where I post a word each day that has some meaning to me, then converse with everyone about life. You’ll find tons of humor, tears, love, friendship, advice and bloopers. Lots of bloopers… where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dogs have segments where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real and show how I live every day.

A bit of humor: Everything doubles as something else when you live in NYC. For me, it’s the dining room, my favorite space in the apartment, where more than just my cooking is on display! As I look out the windows onto a 12th floor terrace, various parts of nature (trees, bushes, flowers, bugs & animals) inspire me to write. Baxter, a two-year-old shiba inu, constantly tries to stop me from writing so I can play with him and keep him amused. How else can you pen the best story possible without these things by your side?

A selection of  books by James J. Cudney

My review for Frozen Stiff Drink: A Kellan Ayrwick Cozy Mystery (Braxton Campus Mysteries Book 6

It is hard to believe that Kellan Ayrwick has only been back at the Braxton Campus for a year in this series of mysteries. In that time he has solved several murders and other criminal activities and either charmed or alienated family and residents. Just when the poor guy thought he could relax with his daughter and nephew away in Florida with his parents, and his developing romance with the town sheriff April on track, a storm front races in.

It is not just the snow that Kellan is up to his eyes in, with his fiesty grandmother going missing, corruption allegations rocking the judicial office, accusations piling up against all his family members and bodies being discovered on an alarmingly regular basis.

As always the author keeps us on our toes with fast paced action and a growing list of suspects; all well drawn with their own quirks and characteristics. Some are familiar from other books and others new to the town.. including the irritatingly arrogant Fox Terrell who seems to turn up when he is least wanted or expected.

James Cudney writes a very good murder mystery and leaves the reader guessing to the last minute as to who could be the killer. He also unravels the other mysteries very satisfactorily in the final chapters, although we are left with a cliffhanger guaranteed to encourage you to buy the next book in the series, which of course we will.

Recommended for murder mystery readers who enjoy second guessing the author right to the last page.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US and: Amazon UKWebsite/Blog: This is my truth nowGoodreads: James J. Cudney – Twitter: @Jamescudney4

The next author is Stephen Geez, whose short story collection I enjoyed very much

Meet Stephen Geez

Stephen Geez earned his undergrad and grad degrees at the University of Michigan. A composer, TV producer, publisher, graphic artist, and writer, he focuses now on novels, essay collections, short fiction, authors’ how-to under the GeezWriter brand, and scripts. Founding member of the publisher Fresh Ink Group, he works with a wide variety of authors to produce their best possible work. Watch for his essays, stories, books, and blog posts at Find him and his author friends at Fresh Ink Group Send him a note from his member page or the Contact Form.

A small selection of  books by Stephen Geez

My review for  Comes this Time to Float: 19 Short Stories

This is a collection that touches hearts, brings old memories to the surface and provides thought provoking moments. Enhanced by images and individually introduced by the author, creating anticipation for the enjoyment to come.

Stephen Geez has a rich writing style that treats the reader to a beautifully detailed narrative bringing the settings of the stories and their characters into focus.

“Magician’s-box swords of sharp sunlight stab the gloom. Leaves turn and reach. An urgent rivulet slaps rocks. Water falls”.

‘The vapors would rise strong and true on this rare night when neither of the two moons dared show a shiny face to warn the emboldened tingle-winds back into the chasm where they bide.’

From the first story, about an unlikely sidekick of a superhero, to the poignancy of a red tractor in the middle of a field, the author ensures that you are fully engaged and ready to believe his characters have something to share that will reflect something in your own life.This makes the stories personal and relateable as we feel the loss, joy, love and the humour within them.

It is tough to suggest particular favourites, but Sidekick, Holler Song, Blind is Love, The Age-Eater and Time and Space touched me deeply.

Highly recommended as a collection of stunningly created vignettes about the human condition.

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – More Reviews: Goodreads – Website: Stephen Geez – Website: Fresh Ink Group – Follow Stephen: Goodreads – Twitter: @StephenGeez – Fresh Ink Twitter: @FreshInkGroup – Voice of Indie Twitter: @VoiceofIndie

The final author today is Anne Goodwin whose books I have also enjoyed.

Meet Anne Goodwin

Anne Goodwin’s drive to understand what makes people tick led to a career in clinical psychology. That same curiosity now powers her fiction.

Anne writes about the darkness that haunts her and is wary of artificial light. She makes stuff up to tell the truth about adversity, creating characters to care about and stories to make you think. She explores identity, mental health and social justice with compassion, humour and hope.

A prize-winning short-story writer, she has published three novels and a short story collection with small independent press, Inspired Quill. Her debut novel, Sugar and Snails, was shortlisted for the 2016 Polari First Book Prize.

Away from her desk, Anne guides book-loving walkers through the Derbyshire landscape that inspired Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre.

Books by Anne Goodwin

My review for Matilda Windsor is coming home

This book is a behind the scenes drama played out behind the doors of a mental institution transitioning from a place to stash those who suffered from alleged mental disorders or lapses in moral judgment. Many living within these institutions may not have originally suffered from a mental impairment, but after fifty years within this closed and rigid environment, they have developed the inability to distinquish between reality and fantasy.

Told from three different perspectives we are introduced to Matilda (Matty), Janice and Henry who all have threads from the past keeping them from living life to the full.

Matilda’s story is heartbreaking and from an early age she was blighted by poverty, loss and abuse by those who should have kept her safe. She was a free spirit trapped by circumstances and the actions of others, and even behind the walls of this institution, there are those eager to take advantage of her vulnerability.

Her escape is the make believe world of princes and country houses in an era she felt most comfortable in. There is humour and logic behind her thinking and it was easy to fall in love with her mischievous approach to modern intrusions into her fantasy. However, after all the deprivations she has suffered, will she be able to move onto the more relaxed approach of community living?

Henry has been stuck in a time warp since his older sister he knew asTilly left when he was very young. He cannot move on as he is convinced that one day she will return to the house they shared fifty years ago. Now reaching retirement that dream is fading despite events in his neighbourhood that conspire to shake him out of his comfort zone. Can he let go of the past and move on to find love and a new life?

Finally Janice a young social worker, idealistic and convinced that she can prepare Matty for life in the new open community housing despite a number of setbacks during the process. Janice has her own past to explore as she becomes more disconnected from her adopted parents and sister and begins to question her role in mental health.

There are times, as events unfold and Matilda shares her childhood and teenage years, you as the onlooker are moved to outrage, despair but also admiration for the spirit that reached breaking point, only for it to escape instead into a fantasy world that provided comfort.

This is a thought provoking novel that is the first in the Matilda Windsor story, written by an author with first hand experience of the world of mental health institutions and the changing approach to treatment as a clinical psychologist. I look forward to discovering how the story unfolds in the next book.

Read the reviews and buy the books :Amazon UK – And : Amazon US – follow Anne : Goodreads – blog: Annecdotal – Twitter: @Annecdotist


Thanks very much for dropping in today and I hope you are leaving with some books… Sally


Smorgasbord Book Promotions – New Book on the Shelves – #Shortstories – Jumped by a Deadly Cholla: plus 10 more speculative fiction stories by John Maberry

Delighted to share the news of John Maberry’s latest release Jumped by a Deadly Cholla: plus 10 more speculative fiction stories – Free Saturday through to Monday May 1st

About the collection

Cactus roots draw microbes from a meteorite—Lois nearly dies. One of eleven stories in a diverse collection of speculative fiction. A potpourri of fantasy and SF. Humor and horror. Supernatural and time-travel. Quick reads from flash fiction through short works, but a novelette too. Like twists? Find them here.

Jack hears the Dog Star’s Bark; an invite from the sun goddess of Sirius—a funny story. The Wishing Bell—evilreminiscent of The Monkey’s Paw. A sentient (alien) shrub offers gene modification tools in Climate Crisis Changes Humans. Werewolves—good ones and bad, in Dog Is my Copilot.

Head over to download the book free Saturday to Monday May 1st: Amazon UK – And: Amazon US

Also by John Maberry

One of the reviews for The Fountain short story collection

Nicholas C. Rossis 5.0 out of 5 stars The Twilight Zone meets Philip K. Dick Reviewed in the United States

I wonder if The Fountain’s stories should be labeled speculative or science fiction, as they remind me more of Twilight Zone and less of Philip K. Dick. Maybe that’s the best definition of them; the common ground between these works. Whichever it is, I enjoyed them and their twists. Maberry writes in a clear way that immerses the reader into the story. He has a gift for creating easily identifiable characters who feel familiar after just a few lines. All in all, a fine collection for those who enjoy their short stories with a twist. 

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon UKAnd: Amazon US – Follow John : Goodreads – Blog: John’s Writing – LinkedIn: John Maberry

About John Maberry

John Maberry dreamed of being a writer from second grade. Life got in his way. Like what, you may ask. Find out the details in Waiting for Westmoreland, the memoir he wrote about how he came to have a happy and successful life. That, after surviving a hard childhood, failed marriages, an eye opening year in Vietnam and more. He finished the memoir five years after retiring from a local government job in busy Northern Virginia.

That’s John in the photo, relaxing with his friend Larry the Lizard. He met Larry in Mimbres,

New Mexico. John and his wife relocated to scenic New Mexico in 2011. That move and other priorities, stalled the transition to speculative fiction, mysteries and writing genres. ‘The Fountain,’ a collection of speculative fiction stories, came out in July, 2017. The Tenth Anniversary Edition of Waiting for Westmoreland came out it September 2017 as well–with a forward and other enhancements.

He’s working on a short story collections and novels now. “Jumped by a Deadly Cholla,” a fantasy and science fiction anthology came out in April 2023. No more delays, time is fleeting. An SF mystery will be out in 2024, along with a nonfiction assortment of the best of Eagle Peak Press articles.

When not working on the novels or the websites, the family enjoys life in their dream home high atop a hill. His wife of 40+ years has her quilting/craft room. He has an office shared with an energetic dog who lounges on a loveseat behind him when not out chasing rabbits. He’s a happy man and a funny guy (strange/weird his wife says).


Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will be leaving with some books.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Music Column – William Price King Meets Music Legends -Natalie Cole – Part Three – The Finale

It is nine years since William Price King joined Smorgasbord to share music across the genres. We continue in 2023 with series sharing the lives and music of some of the great names in music over the last century

Welcome to the series about musical legends from the last 100 years and now we explore the life and music of Jazz singer Natalie Cole, daughter of the legendary Nat King Cole.

Music Legends – Jazz – Natalie Cole – The Finale


The rest of the 90s continued to bring impressive recordings and chart success which included two further albums with the Elektra label; Snowfall on the Sahara and The Magic of Christmas released in 1999 recorded with the London Symphony Orchestra.

Natalie Cole’s first album of the new millennium was the compilation Greatest Hits Vol. 1. The tracks included her hits from her twenty-five year career such as Pink Cadillac, Miss You Like Crazy and the duet with Nat King Cole, Unforgettable. Here is This Will Be (An Everlasting Love) from the album in a live performance from 1975 uploaded by

In 2001 Natalie starred as herself in Livin’ For Love: The Natalie Cole Story which was the NBC adaptation of her autobiography, Angel on my Shoulder. She received the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actress in a Television Movie, Mini-Series or Dramatic Special for this deeply moving role in the story of her career and private struggles with addiction. You can the autobiographies by Natalie Cole: Amazon

Following this Natalie switched recording labels to Verve Records and released two albums. Ask A Woman who Knows, in 2002, celebrated her jazz roots and included guest vocalist Diana Krall. The album received four Grammy nominations and achieved Silver status and No 1. in the jazz charts.. As with her autobiography the chosen tracks charted her experiences in life and love as well as milestones in her career with songs previously recorded by Nina Simone, Barbra Streisand, Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole. She reunited with Tommy LiPuma for the album and this added extra magic to the recordings. Here is Natalie Cole and Diana Krall with Better than Anything – a tribute to shopping! Uploaded by TransatlanticMoments

In 2006 Verve released Natalie’s 20th album; Leavin’ featuring pop, rock and R&B standards originally recorded by the top artists in the genres including Daydreaming by Aretha Franklin, The Man with the Child in his Eyes by Kate Bush and If I Ever Lose my Faith in You by Sting. The album also included two original songs 5 Minutes Away written with Dallas Austin and Don’t Say Goodnight (It’s Time for Love) with an Ernie Isley and Chris Jasper collaboration.

Seventeen years after Unforgettable… With Love, Natalie released Still Unforgettable which featured not only her father’s most memorable songs but also of other artists such as Frank Sinatra, Lena Horne and Sammy Davis Jr. Tracks included The Best Is Yet To Come, Somethings Gotta Give and Walking My Baby Back Home  NatalieColeMusic 


The album reached No 19 in the US chart and No 1 in the jazz chart and Natalie won the Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album at the 51st Grammy Awards.

Natalie’s acting career had flourished in the early part of the decade with appearances on popular television shows such as Grey’s Anatomy, Touched by an Angel and Law in Order; Special Victims Unit.

2008 was also a pivotal year in Natalie’s personal life as she announced that she had been diagnosed with Hepatitis C, resulting from her years of intravenous drug abuse; something that she had been very open about publicly. She warned others that they might also be a ticking time bomb as the infection can lie dormant for many years.

Following a months of treatment for the disease, Natalie experienced kidney failure and was put on dialysis. She appeared on Larry King Live appealing for a kidney donor and in a twist of fate the show was being watched by a nurse who had treated Natalie in hospital. Tragically, two months later the nurse’s niece died unexpectedly of a stroke and being an organ donor and a match for Natalie, she was offered her kidney.

The donor and her family were from El Salvador and this inspired Natalie to become closer to the culture.

“I wouldn’t put it past the possibility that there is a spirit of Latino inside of me, because of this family,” says Natalie. “Ever since then, my passion for Spanish and everything Latin, all of a sudden became more intense. I couldn’t even figure it out myself.”

Following this life saving gift and her recovery, Natalie continued to tour and record but her health issues continued. She became a spokesperson for the University Kidney Research Organisation which worked to eradicating kidney disease and in 2010 she wrote her second book; Love Brought Me Back.

Whilst it was difficult to schedule tours with the challenge of her health issues, Natalie was able to appear in a number of feature films and made for television movies including the Cole Porter biopic De-Lovely an the lead in Lily in Winter. She also guested on Macy Gray’s album Big singing Finally Make Me Happy, and in 2010 she performed with Andrea Bocelli in a concert at the Kodak Theatre for his album My Christmas. Here they are with The Christmas SongAndrea Bocelli

In June 2013, Natalie released her first studio album in five years for Verve/Universal. Natalie Cole En Espanol was a compilation of Latin standards lavishly orchestrated by Rudy Perez, Billboard’s Latin Music Producer of the Decade. Nat King Cole had found the Latin American Songbook a wonderful and successful avenue to explore and as well as covering some of his classics, Natalie also included some of the best from the Songbook. She had never sung in Spanish before and she had this to say about the album.

This album is not so much a tribute to my father as it is to Latin music,” she says. “My whole thing was, if I’m going to do this as a first-timer, a non-Spanish-speaking American, I need to pay tribute to the music. I need to honor it because I’m not entitled to just sing it any kind of way. I have a duty to make it real, to pick authentic, beautiful, traditional Latin songs. And that’s what we went for.”

Rudy Perez initially brought in a language coach to ensure an authentic sound to the vocals but they soon discovered that Natalie was a natural and she needed no further assistance.

Rudy commented: “I found out she has an incredible ability to sing in Spanish phonetically, as you can hear on the album,” says Perez. “I couldn’t believe it, she was so good…She could roll her “r’s”, just unbelievable.”

From the original 120 songs that Rudy Perez and Natalie considered they decided on twelve tracks. Some were songs that her father had recorded such as Noche de Ronda, Latin standards such as Besame Mucho featuring Andrea Bocelli and Maria Grever’s Cuando Vuelva A Tu Lado (What a Difference A Day Makes).

The album was nominated for the Latin Grammy Awards and here is the stunning father/daughter duet “Acércate Mas”.

Sadly following further health complications Natalie Cole died of congestive heart failure on New Year’s Eve 2015. Tributes poured in from around the world including these from President Obama and stars of the music industry.

“You don’t maintain a 40-plus-year career by accident,” said songwriter David Foster. “It’s just a short list of real singers who could prevail against the changing tide of public taste. Natalie transcended this simple genre classification whether it was R&B, sassy in her early hits, or her later work interpreting the jazz standards.”

“Natalie had one extra pressure that she was faced with every day of her life,” said singer Lionel Richie. “She was a little girl who wanted to be a superstar in a family that already had a superstar. That’s what make her prize of winning so unforgettable.”

Tony Bennett added on Instagram: “I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Natalie Cole, as I have cherished the long friendship I had with her, her father Nat, and the family over the years. Natalie was an exceptional jazz singer and it was an honor to have recorded and performed with her on several occasions. She was a lovely and generous person who will be greatly missed.”

As you will have realised from the last three posts, Natalie Cole left behind a legacy of music that not only celebrated the work of her father but her own extraordinary talent. Thankfully with the wonders of modern technology we can still listen and enjoy that talent for our own lifetimes which is a precious gift.

Buy Natalie Cole Music – .Amazon

Additional source: Wikipedia

William Price King is an American jazz singer, crooner, and composer.

His interest in music began at an early age when he studied piano and clarinet in high school. At Morehouse College in Atlanta where he grew up, he sang in the Glee Club and studied classical music. After graduation he went off to the Yale School of Music where he earned a Masters degree. From there he journeyed to New York where he created a jazz trio ‘Au Naturel’ which performed in some of the hottest venues in Manhattan including gigs on Broadway and the famous ‘Rainbow Room.’ These gigs opened doors for performances in Montreal and a European tour.

While touring Europe he met a lovely French lady, Jeanne Maïstre, who, a year later became his wife. King left the group ‘Au Naturel’ and settled in the south of France where he started a new life on the French Riviera, opening his own music school – the “Price King Ecole Internationale de Chant.” He has had the pleasure over the years of seeing many of his students excel as singers on a professional level, and some going on to become national celebrities. He continues to coach young singers today, in his spare time.

Blog– IMPROVISATION William Price King on Tumblr – Buy William’s music: William Price King iTunes – FacebookWilliam Price King – Twitter@wpkofficial
Regular Venue – Cave Wilson


As always William would love to receive your feedback… thanks Sally.


Smorgasbord Laughter Lines Extra – Host Malcolm Allen – April 2023 – Passwords and Lego

Delighted to share the latest funnies from Australia and around the world shared by author Malcolm Allen

Many thanks to Malcolm for sharing his humour with us.

About Malcolm Allen

The author was born in London UK and experienced a challenging childhood, leaving school with no academic qualifications at the age of 15. He had mixed fortunes in his early working days but managed to secure a job in the banking industry at the age of 19. During a period of 32 years he enjoyed a demanding and successful career in London, the pinnacle of which was becoming a Company Director at the age of 37. Following a life changing experience in November 1998 he emigrated to Perth, Western Australia in September 2001, relocating to his current home in Melbourne, Australia in November 2015.

Thanks for dropping in today Sally and hope you are leaving with a smile on your face..



Smorgasbord Book Promotions – New Book on the Shelves – #History #1970s #Comingofage – Passages by Mary Clark

Delighted to share the news about Mary Clark’s latest release, a coming of age novel set in the liberated 1970s of New York, Passages

About the book

The 1970s. Anything goes. Sexual liberation. New ideas on how to live. Being young in the city, searching for identity, and love, and the most amazing life possible – that was the story of many back then. They were trailblazers. In Passages, a young man’s coming of age in the “anything goes” of 1970’s New York City, Martin’s story reflects the greater panorama of people seeking freedom of expression. Martin is an aspiring writer who explores the tangled topics of love and living an alternative lifestyle as an artist. He also lives within his male and female identities which fuel his dreams and fantasies.

Martin’s family history of violence, his mental instability, and a friend’s death spur him to escape suburban life. In the city, he meets Simone, an actress on Broadway. In a strange first encounter the embryo of a new self is revealed to him. He struggles to nourish his independent self as he engages in two volatile relationships. Rafaela, who works in a Times Square restaurant, tests his ability to grow beyond his past experiences. Rafaela is pragmatic, driven. Simone is on her way to a legendary career. What will Martin do with the gifts and burdens life has given him?

Head over to buy the book: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

Also by Mary Clark


Thanks for dropping by and I hope you will be leaving with some books..thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Health Column 2023 – The Body our Greatest Asset – The Immune System and How it Works by Sally Cronin

I have featured this series over the last ten years on a regular basis for new readers who might have joined the blog. Our bodies are are greatest asset. It has a long road ahead of if from birth, through the teen years, work life, parenthood, middle age and then into our 70s and beyond.

At every stage of our life healthy nutrition is essential to help the body develop and remain as disease free as possible. I appreciate that many of you may have read this series before, but I hope it will be a reminder of how amazing our bodies are, and simply eating the right foods, exercising moderately and not doing anything too reckless…will go a long way to enjoying later life to the full.

In this series of posts I am going to be revisiting the immune system, the most effective private health insurance you can have.

As the last three years have demonstrated, we are all at risk from opportune pathogens looking for ideal hosts to enable them to thrive, adapt and move on.

Whilst millions of us have now been vaccinated that does not mean we cannot catch the virus or any of its variants. Although it has shown it is likely that the symptoms might not be as severe.

What is absolutely essential is that we don’t just rely on the vaccinations or even masks for that matter but have to take responsibility for our own private health insurance which is  a robust immune system.

The Immune System and how it works.

Like most things in life there are two sides to every story, which means there are the good guys and the bad guys. When it comes to our health this involves healthy bacteria and dangerous bacteria.

All creatures, including of course humans, have an amazingly complex but effective system to distinguish between the two, and to ensure that we don’t come to harm. It is our Immune System.

This system has been evolving over hundreds of thousands of years and developing strategies to protect us every time it met with a new threat. This is often; as germs mutate when they meet resistance and our software needs frequent updating. This last 18 months of battling Covid is an extreme example of this.

The majority of the bacteria in our body is designed to be there.

  • These are the friendlies and our home defence team.
  • Without a gut teeming with them many of our systems would grind to a halt, our brains would not function and our blood would uselessly circulate our bodies without anything to transport.
  • Our food would not be processed and nutrients would not reach the organs that depend entirely on them to survive.
  • Along with the worker bacterial cells there are the front line soldiers who rush to our defence when we are under attack.
  • Provided we have a healthy diet of unprocessed natural foods these fighters are in enough numbers to do the job.
  • However, throw sugars and industrial food into the equation along with laziness and you rob your immune system of this vital defence component and you are open to attack.

One of the issues that is also playing a huge part in our downgrading of our anti-virus software is the overuse of commercial anti-bacterial products. Not only can the active ingredients be harmful to us, but if too strong, their actions can prevent us coming into contact with bacteria needed for our immune systems to detect or develop andidotes.

Having said that, children need to be exposed to non-lethal germs from an early age to develop their immature immune systems effectively. Living in a home that is 99% germ free is a great concept but the world outside is 99% germ invested. A child needs to be able to cope with that, and can only do so if its defence system has been allowed to come up to standard.

Components of this complex defence mechanism, how it works and how to maintain its efficiency with some changes in diet.

  • It is a system that is usually taken for granted and treated with disrespect until it lets us down, and then we blame it for making us ill.
  • In fact if we have not provided this vital function within our body, the foods containing the nutrients it requires; it is us who is to blame.
  • Many millions in the world do not have access to fresh produce and are unable to give their immune systems what it needs, causing widespread disease.
  • This means that it is even more important for those of us who do live with the luxury of food choice to make the most of it.
  • Without an efficiently functioning immune system we would all have to spend our lives in a bubble without any contact with the outside world. Ever. One minor infection could kill you!

There have been a number of cases over the years of children born with Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID). They have been forced to spend their lives separated by clear plastic from their family and any contact with bacteria or viruses. Today, thankfully with gene therapy, this devastating disease is curable, but for some a normal life is simply not possible.

The immune system is another one of our silent partners and is an extremely important one. Our most crucial years in terms of this amazing system in our body, is our childhood, when our contact with people, animals, grass, pollens, foods; develops the immune system until it becomes our guardian angel. Watching and waiting for any breach in our system and rushing to our defence within seconds of the alarm being sounded. (Anyone who has had a child going to nursery or school for the first time will have experienced first-hand the process, as the mass contact produces a whole raft of immune system strengthening infections!) It is however, never too late to make the changes necessary to strengthen your immune system.

  • In a nutshell if your immune system is not functioning well, your entire body including the tissues, organs and systems, suffer damage and cannot repair themselves.
  • Additionally you are wide open to bacterial, viral and toxic invaders who are looking for a nesting site.
  • You have what they need to reproduce and thrive but they like to make some adjustments when they arrive.
  • They like a lovely acidic, toxic, waste filled environment without too much oxygen. (A rubbish diet with little exercise will achieve that nicely)
  • They are particularly fond of a new home that does not have troublesome neighbours such as anti-oxidants and they prefer a quiet life without too much exercise so that they get on and breed.
  • They are a class act and make sure that they give you something back in the form of rent. Frequent colds and flu, thrush, skin complaints, fatigue and stomach problems.
  • If you are a really up market landlord and are offering premium accommodation they will pay you back with arthritis, rheumatism, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s and cancer.
  • The immune system is not involved in just our internal defences. It actually has a pretty formidable array of physical barriers that are designed to keep pathogens, which is all harmful substances out of our bodies.

Our first line of defence

The skin is our main external protector. If it is not damaged it will not allow harmful substances to enter the blood stream. The problem is that of course it is porous and is designed to allow fluids out and in through the pores. So any substance that touches your skin such as chemical preparations can pass right through.

For example if you use strong household cleaners these contain highly toxic substances that will pass through the dermal layer and store in the tissues causing anything to a mild rash to a violent allergic reaction.

This is why you must wear gloves when using them. Many of us react to perfume, cosmetics or even simple hand creams that our body obviously thinks of as toxic. If you cut yourself then germs can pass through directly to the bloodstream and from there they have complete access to the rest of your body.

We have special hairs and mucus tissues in our nose, mouth and throat that are designed to catch anything harmful. If a toxin gets as far as our stomachs, then acid and enzymes will react and cause you to vomit to get rid of it. Should any harmful bacteria, virus or toxin get past these barriers then we have a very complex system of cells and anti-bodies that will rush to our defence. Most of us have suffered stomach upsets before and it is just the body getting rid of the toxins. (More about these in a later post.)


The liver is of course the place where most of these toxins are going to pass through, and it has specific enzymes designed to destroy them so that they can then be evicted from the body. Which is fine if the toxicity is only occasional but unfortunately our modern diet and environment puts the liver under a great deal of pressure and toxins will not all be expelled, going on to do sometimes irreparable damage.

Free radicals running riot through the body.

If you cut an apple and effectively damage it, within a few minutes it will begin to turn brown. If you leave it long enough the tissue of the apple will begin to break down and you will end up with a liquid, bacteria covered and unidentifiable lump on your cutting board. That just about sums up what free radical damage does to your body. We bandy about the phrase Free Radicals as if they are some dissident political group or school yard bullies which is essentially true. Like most bullies they are missing something and want yours.

A free radical is a molecule. A normal molecule has an even number of electrons and is considered stable. Free radicals on the other hand have an uneven number of electrons and are unstable. They are desperate to be like the normal molecules so they have to steal from them to get another electron. This of course means that they have created another free radical. More and more cells become damaged and leave the body open to most diseases including cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Like the apple the damage is a kind of oxidation, which is the action of adding oxygen to a substance or rusting and when I wrote about cholesterol, it was the low density lipoprotein with its smaller particles that becomes oxidised by free radicals making it unhealthy.

Do Free Radicals have a positive effect on the body?

Ironically the immune system uses some free radicals to go and steal an electron from harmful molecules that have entered the system illegally. Problem is, like everything else in the body we need balances and checks. The Free Radical police are anti-oxidants and if you have not got enough of them then the free radicals become vigilantes and go after everything that moves.

Also we create free radicals when we exercise energetically and take in additional oxygen. These then assist with the metabolism of foods that enter the body. Again if the balance between these and anti-oxidants is not correct more free radicals are created than are needed. This is why we need a healthy diet including foods that provide these anti-oxidants.

vegetablesThose of you who read my articles on a regular basis know what is coming next!… To boost your immune system there are some very easy guidelines to follow with regard to diet.

  1. Cut out refined sugars from your diet so that you are only ingesting a maximum of 6 teaspoons per day in cooked foods and as a sweetener. Effectively, that means do not eat industrial processed foods, particularly items such as breakfast cereals and most commercial flavoured yogurts. Do not be taken in by low-fat food and those that say artificially sweetened. The chemical stuff is definitely unhealthy and has documented side effects. Too much sugar in the system provides a wonderful environment for all toxic pathogens and your immune system will only be able to stand on the side lines as its defence team fights a losing battle.
  2. Industrially produced foods have been through a machine, rarely has many natural ingredients and has chemical additives. If it is wrapped in plastic, comes in a packet or has very attractive cardboard advertising then treat with suspicion. Most of the time your immune system will spend more time dealing with the toxins than your digestive system will take to consume and process. If after the main ingredients you have a long list of additives and E numbers…. skip it.
  3. Drink sufficient fluids to help toxins pass out of the body. If you are one of those who boast that you manage on a cup or two of tea a day and that you get all the fluids you need from the food you eat; think again. We lose moisture when we exhale, through our skin and when we pee, which adds up to between 1.5 to 2 litres per day. You cannot replenish that from food alone and if you pinch the skin on the back of your hand and it is slow to resume its normal smooth appearance then you are dehydrated. This will impact how your immune system functions.
  4. Adopt the 80/20 rule for your diet. 80% all fresh natural produce that has been grown, picked or dug up out of the ground. The brighter the colour the better. I know that having a busy work and personal life makes this daunting sometimes but I use frozen vegetables all the time.. Especially out of season. The only foods that I usually prefer to prepare myself are carrots, potatoes and sweet potato as the frozen ones do not taste as good. Also economically onions are much better non-frozen but I do in bulk and they keep in the fridge for a week. Green vegetables particularly are very good these days and if you are really in a hurry get a good quality mixed veg bag.
  5. Combine these vegetables with a moderate intake of wholegrains (dependent on your activity levels )with good quality protein that has not been mass farmed (poultry, beef, lamb, salmon etc). Suggested wholegrains including porridge oats, wholegrain Basmati rice, multi-grain fresh bread. (Carbohydrates are treated like sugar by the body so moderation is the key) .
  6. Milk, Butter, Eggs and Olive Oil should also be part of your nutritional shopping list as they provide vitamins and minerals as well as Omega Fatty Acids to boost your entire system.
  7. Follow my ‘Cook From Scratch’ approach to eating. That includes sauces so that you have minimum industrially manufactured produce in the diet. (I hesitate to call it food)
  8. 20% of your diet is where the Red Wine, Dark Chocolate and occasional Guinness comes in!

Next time – ignorance is not bliss.. your body is your only real asset and its well-being should be your primary concern. 

©sally cronin Just Food for Health 1998 – 2023

A little bit about me nutritionally. .

About Sally Cronin

I am a qualified nutritional therapist with twenty-four years experience working with clients in Ireland and the UK as well as being a health consultant on radio in Spain.

Although I write a lot of fiction, I actually wrote my first two books on health, the first one, Size Matters, a weight loss programme 21 years ago, based on my own weight loss of 154lbs. My first clinic was in Ireland, the Cronin Diet Advisory Centre and my second book, Just Food for Health was written as my client’s workbook. Since then I have written a men’s health manual, and anti-aging programme, articles for magazines, radio programmes and posts here on Smorgasbord.

You can buy my books from: Amazon US – and: Amazon UK – Follow me :Goodreads – Twitter: @sgc58 – Facebook: Sally Cronin – LinkedIn: Sally Cronin


Thanks reading and I hope you will join me again next week…Sally.