Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up- Glenn Miller, Roses, Mexico, New Books, Reviews and Guests.

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

Some stand out moments from the week that I would like to make a special mention about.

The first was the nomination for the blog for the Versatile Blogger Award by Brigid Gallagher which I was very honoured to receive. I know that many bloggers are now award free. I quite understand, as when you are at full tilt, it is tough to take the time to respond to an award and also to draw up a list of willing nominees.

However… even after six years, I still get a kick out of awards and I have met so many wonderful bloggers through other people’s nominees, that it is well worth the effort. And also it is an opportunity to showcase newer bloggers who are still finding their feet or deserve to have some promotion.

Anyway.. this was my response with 7 more secrets about me…..and some nominees who are terrific bloggers.

The second highlight is the release of Understanding: An Anthology of True and Significant Life Events… Compiled and contributed to by Stevie Turner and 18 other authors including myself and quite a few of our blogging community.

The proceeds from this anthology will be going to Cancer Research and it is a very worthy cause.

Over the next week I will be posing a number of author profiles of those who have contributed and I hope that you will follow those authors and also support their work in this collection.

About the anthology

The following authors and bloggers kindly answered questions posed by Stevie Turner regarding significant life experiences they had undergone. These events include sexual abuse, a near death experience, alcoholism, being diagnosed with cancer, depression, losing weight, getting married, being a mother to many children, being the daughter of a narcissistic mother, and many more!

In this first post I share the authors who have contributed with a profile on Stevie Turner, D.G. Kaye and in the coming two weeks will feature the other authors in separate posts.

All proceeds will be donated to Cancer Research:

You can buy the anthology for only 99c:

And on Amazon UK for 99p:

Now on with the other posts this week.

This week William Price King shares the life and music of the legendary Glenn Miller whose music is still loved over 70 years since his untimely death during the Second World War.

In his final gardening post, Paul Andruss shares the beauty and background to the rose.

In the second part of her posts on Puerto Vallarta in Mexico, D.G. Kaye shares the fundamentals that you need to know about renting, shopping, tipping, exchanging your cash, dining and how to drink safe water.

This week my guest is author Ann Chiappetta who shares where she would love to live in the world, the animal she would most like to talk to and her favourite season.

My review for Small Town Kid by Frank Prem – recommended

This week Carol Taylor and I join forces to share the foods that contain good amounts of Vitamin B3 and the recipes that the whole family will enjoy.

A lovely guest post from Joy Lennick in tribute to her mother…

Sally’s personal stuff

This week in the R’s of Life,  I look at the true cost of retail therapy and the waste associated with our drive to own the latest and the most fashionable.  And also the mountains of food that goes uneaten in most of our countries when millions are starving.

This week I share the abundance of food that you can enjoy as you lose weight… starving the body is not an option, and cutting out food groups is counter productive.

Being the first week of the month… .Colleen Chesebro allowed us to pick our own words as prompts…My Etheree is entitled ‘April’


Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction – the Prompt this week is ‘Fire’

Donna W. Hill is a breast cancer survivor and in this week’s inspiring post she shares her motivation and also encounters with butterflies and knitting.

Blue butterfly on milkweed: photo by Rich Hill

This week Jen Moore, shares the delightful character who is her son, and the warm and embracing way that the family manages his dyslexia.

This week Norah Colvin shares all things berry.. which resulted in a lot of discussion about what is a berry and what is not, and how to get hold of our favourites…


A new contributor this week and the first post from the archives of Susanne Swanson who shares her return to her kindergarten school, celebrating its 100th anniversary.

New Book on the Shelves

Author Updates


Thank you very much for visiting this week and for all your support, it is always appreciated.


Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Sunday Interview – Getting to Know Author Ann Chiappetta

I introduced you to author Ann Chiappetta a couple of weeks ago when I posted about her books and now we find out a little bit more about her life and the questions that she has selected to answer. First though the official bio…..

About Ann Chiappetta

Ann is an artist and often refers to her love of words as a natural compensation after losing her vision in 1993. Once a designer of acrylic displays and furniture, Ann trained her creative senses to flow over from the visual to the literary arts. Years later, she has become a poet and author, honing her talent in various mediums, including web content for nonprofits, regular bylines for online literary publications, poetry, anthologies and guest editing in online literary journals, just to name a few projects of which she
has contributed.

Ann possesses a master of science in Marriage and family therapy from Iona College and an undergraduate degree from the College of New Rochelle, both located in Westchester County, New York. She is currently employed as a readjustment and trauma counselor for combat veterans and their families. A guide dog handler and advocate, Ann volunteers her time representing people with visual impairments and guide dog users on various National, State and local boards of directors. A consultant and guest presenter, Ann visits schools promoting awareness and equality for people with disabilities. She is the 2015 recipient of the WDOM Spirit of Independence award.

Ann is available for speaking engagements and is knowledgeable on the following topics: *writing and creativity * independent publishing * recovering and adjusting to vision loss for individuals/families * sheltering people with visual impairments
*sheltering pets and service dogs * pet assisted therapy * training and working with a guide or service dog * PTSD and combat stress related to veterans and families

Thanks to her retired guide dog, Verona, Ann also visits libraries and assisted living centers offering pet assisted therapy.

Now time to discover a little more about Ann and the questions she has chosen…

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be?

The Pacific coast calls to me.

I was born on the east coast, growing up appreciating the lower Hudson river and the tributaries which flow out to the Atlantic Ocean. The combination of the beaches, river front and nearby forest was, what I thought, the most beautiful place to live.

When I moved to the west coast I fell in love with a geographical marvel, or so I thought at the time. Santa Cruz, highway 1 and the San Francisco bay area turned me into a pacific coast lover. There was just so much more “Life”; wild life, sea life, and outdoor life.

I would love to live in a modest pacific sea coast town or city and be able to walk to the beach. I would equally like to live near a lake front. Water is my astrological attunement and a Pisces should not live in the desert.

If animals could talk, which one would you have a conversation with?

I would want to talk with my guide dog. Being a therapist, I would want to know all sorts of things but fear it would end up annoying him.
“So, Bailey, tell me about your early times as a puppy,”
“You know all this already,”
“I know, humor me, okay?”
“Okay, you’re the human,” he would say, “I was the first one out and got the best nipple,”
“That’s it?”
“Is it dinner time yet?”

Maybe I’d have better luck with the cat.

Sally here: I am sure that with a little practice Ann would be able to have a converstion with both her guide dog and the cat….these guys are pretty vocal..

If you could choose a different career, what would it be and why?

I would love to have been a veterinarian. It is my sense of curiosity and science that gave me thoughts of being an animal doctor when I was a child. The movie, “Dr. Doolittle” fascinated me. I pretended to “doctor up” my stuffed animals, too. Now, I am as hands-on as I can be, even though I can’t see anymore.

What are the 5 things you would always find in your handbag or briefcase?

Spare cane, rescue inhaler, wallet, extra poop bags, and cell phone. Practical!

 What season is your favorite and why?

My favorite time of year encompasses the end of summer and the beginning of autumn. I am referring to the late summer, August or early September thereabouts; the days are warm, the nights are cool and the stars seem to hang in the sky forever. The breeze brings the scent of honeysuckle and mowed grass. The sounds of crickets relax the mind. Late summer evenings by the lake are my favorite. I light the citronella candle, sit beside my husband and enjoy it.

Sally here:  one of my favourite times of the year too… and here is Nat King Cole with his tribute..

Ann Chiappetta has just released a collection of poems, essays and flash fiction: Words of Life

About the Collection

In this new collection of poems, essays, and flash fiction, the author once again exhibits her ability to write about both the light and dark sides of life. There are numerous poems and stories about nature: its kindness, cruelty, and wonder. There are frank expressions of the sadness and frustration she felt at the progressive loss of her eyesight and a poem about the social isolation that disability can bring. Other pieces, though, sing of joys as diverse as family closeness, the love of dogs, the delights of scents, and the power of the muse. Just as in her first volume of poetry, Upwelling: Poems (2016), there is no fluff here. To read Ann Chiappetta’s works is to feel them deeply, appreciate them mightily, and remember them forever. From the IntroductionWhile it is my hope that all the pieces in this book resonate with my readers, I have my favorites. Some of the poems have been previously published; all reflect what lies within.

This volume is accented with a few photographs. As I lose the last vestiges of my vision, bringing a meaningful visual array to this collection seems imperative. Finally, dear reader, I want to share the prose that reflects the way I’ve lived my creative life. If just one poem or essay resonates with you, I have accomplished the purpose. For a moment, as the eye reads and the brain interprets, the reader slips into the shoes of the writer. This is the true spirit of what it means to be creative, open, to offer the emotions in such a way as to give another person the opportunity to appreciate the writer’s experience with the words of life.

One of the early reviews from Abbie Johnson Taylor

From the author of Upwelling and Follow Your Dog comes a short collection of poetry and prose on family vacations, vision loss, animals, and other topics. It also includes a work of flash fiction. An introduction by the author explains what inspired this compilation.

I met Ann Chiappetta through Behind Our Eyes, an organization of writers with disabilities. I like how she writes about the lighter and darker sides of life. My favorite piece is one in which she describes how she rescued two baby sparrows, only one of whom survived, and the hard lesson her eight-year-old son learned from this experience. I recommend this book, which not only provides insight on vision loss but on other negative and positive aspects of life.

Head over and buy the collection:

And on Amazon UK:

Also by Ann Chiappetta

Read the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon UK:

Connect to Ann


My thanks to Ann for visiting today and to you for dropping in.. I hope you will head over to get to know Ann even better. .thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – Cathaoireacha, Cats, More Cats, Irises and Beans!

Welcome to the weekly round up of posts you might have missed this week. As always my thanks to those who are regular contributors and guest writers. Some wonderful posts on family, music, food and life in general.

Guest writers.

I began this blog magazine to share content with as wide a range of interest as possible. That includes showcasing other writers and if you would like a guest writing spot you can share posts that you have already written and would like to showcase again to a new audience here on Smorgasbord. It can be on any topic but I do have some younger readership so it does need to be family friendly.. Get in touch on with four links to your posts and I will come back to you with any further information that I need to create your post.

If you would like to see previous posts then just type in Guest Writer in the search box to the right of the blog title at the top of the page and it will bring them all up for you.

Posts from Your Archives

There will be details on a new series of Posts from Your Archives with a different theme after Easter. The family posts have been wonderful and thanks to all those who have shared their posts. These posts are different from the guest posts as they have a specific theme.

Both of these series offer you the chance to showcase your writing but also your books with any recent reviews..

Tribute to a writing companion…my office chair and Cathaoireacha…

I have been using the same chair that we bought in Carrefour supermarket in Spain for 15 years. It is leather with stainless steel arms and trim and was the most comfortable chair I have ever used for writing. I would swivel it around to watch television as well in our office and when we first arrived in Ireland three years ago, I was parted from it for six months. I noticed the difference.

Last week as I swivelled to pick up a file at the end of my desk, the chair tossed me unceremoniously onto the floor where I lay in a bemused heap. The handyman (in house) inspected the chair from every angle and we realised that one of the five stainless steel feet on the pedestal was being held up in pain and was an inch above the floor. Further investigations revealed a stress fracture and it was not reparable.

Going online to look for a similar style of chair, in leather was  a bit of a shocker. Looked like it was going to be 400 Euro which is good value if I could get another 15 years out of it but still worth checking around.

When we first moved here David had bought some second hand office furniture from a warehouse in Wicklow and following a phone call we headed up there yesterday to inspect the stock. What a great guy… and it was a treasure trove in his warehouse with furniture stacked to the rafters including leather office swivel chairs. We spend 15 minutes moving things about and of course I spotted just the chair I wanted right at the back under a bunch of other ones.. David dug it out and I sat in it.. more fancy than my old one with more padding and leather arms, deep seat and back and perfect. Easily a 500 euro chair..

We called the owner over and prepared to negotiate..especially when he said it was from a bank office clearance and was the CEO’s chair… can imagine our surprise when he offered it to us for 70 Euro… wow.. no negotiating needed.

And as a bonus. We mentioned the demise of my stalwart writing companion… and lo and behold he had a five leg pedestal that fits all the models and he gave that to us for free.

David has now repaired the old chair and he is going to use from now on to replace the wooden one currently doing the job. I love my new chair as it has a bit more padding which is a bonus for my butt… and very happy that an old friend is not going to end up on the scrap heap. Here they are together… family.

I am married to a man who thankfully believes in buying second hand… I was too…. and whilst it is lovely to have shiny new stuff….at the end of the day a little bit of wear and tear and a fantastic bargain is as satisfying as spending six time more on a new item.

Recycling is so important and as the landfills continue to grow into mountains of household goods that have been usurped by new items, it is well worth donating them to charity shops or passed on to people like this guy who provides a wonderful service. Thanks to Pat Harvey who also sells a multitude of other products for the home.. Wicklow Hygiene Products if you live in the area.. he’s your man!

On the subject of family and cathaoireacha…chairs

When David and I came over to Ireland in early November 1980 to meet his family (we met and married in 6 weeks) I was given a warm welcome. When presented with a glass of wine.. which was often.. I would wish everyone ‘cheers’. Eventually I asked what the Irish was for ‘cheers’ as as one they announced that it was ‘Kaheeraka’ (phonetically). For many years afterwards when in Ireland or in the company of Irish acquaintances, I would raise my glass and say ‘Kaheeraka’..  only discover that I had been hazed.. and what I was really saying was Cathaoireacha..’Chairs’. Gotta love family…. all in good fun….No wonder himself is laughing in this photograph taken that weekend…..

On with the posts from the week…

This week the beautiful Iris..

Recipes for beans to include in your family’s menus.. full of energy and nutrients. Homemade without all the additives.

Annette Rochelle Aben shares the universal energy of April and how it might impact us as individuals.. bring it on..

My guest today, Julia Benally shares what she did grab when she had two minutes to get out of her house, why it would be wise not to cross her freshly mopped floors, a very disconcerting Christmas holiday, her favourite children’s song and a rather bouncy mis-purchase…

One of life’s certainties is that at some point you are going to be rejected personally or professionally. It can happen at any age and because it is a certainty, it does pay to prepare for it, or if unexpected have some strategies to cope with it.

Trash can punch by the pool and a trip to San Diego and Sea World in April 1986

With any project plan you need to have a start point and and end point…measurement is the key to identify progress and also to create significant events that warrant celebration.

How much do you weigh now?

And how much should you weigh to be healthy?

This week for the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge by Charli Mills The prompt is the word ‘Eminence’ in all its glory…

This week’s response to Colleen’s Tuesday Poetry Challenge 129

This week a one hit wonder… Rockin’ Robin by Bobby Day.. that was his only major chart hit, but led to a career as a successful songwriter.


My review of More Glimpses by Hugh W. Roberts – short stories across several genres with something for everyone.

Delighted to welcome Donna W. Hill to the blog with a series of posts from her archives. A wonderful story of a rescue cat.

Goofus, a male, Strawberry-blonde tabby, hangs upside-down in the family room: photo by Rich Hill

Please welcome Jen Moore who has been blogging about life with chickens, cats and children for five years.

This is the second post from the archives of  educator and storyteller Norah Colvin and this week Norah shares her own experiences of telling real stories about family to young children, not just their immediate family but passing on living history about those relatives we have met but the younger generation may not have.

Nor and Bec reading

Miriam Hurdle shares two post in one with a letter that she wrote to her daughter and then she shares a very special post where Mercy shares the words that she associates with her mother, and the strengths she has inherited from her.


Welcome to the third of the guest posts from author L.T. Garvin and this week a short story of the difficult transitional years between child and adulthood, commonly called the ‘Teens’. The story is infused with its author’s personal experiences.

New on the shelves

Author Updates Reviews

Thank you for dropping in today and for your support throughout the week. If you would like to be part of Smorgasbord Blog Magazine as a guest then please get in touch… either with posts from your archives on the subject of family… or as a guest writer on a variety of subjects.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Sunday Interview – Getting to Know Author Julia Benally

My guest today, Julia Benally shares what she did grab when she had two minutes to get out of her house, why it would be wise not to cross her freshly mopped floors, a very disconcerting Christmas holiday, her favourite children’s song and a rather bouncy mis-purchase…

About Julia…

Born to the Bear Clan of the White Mountain Apache Tribe, Julia enjoys writing stories, mostly horror, about her area, but every once in a while, she delves into romance, and she loves fantasy.When not writing, she loves dancing, playing the piano, and killing zombies.

If you only had two minutes to get out of your house, what would you grab?

When I was fourteen, we had a really bad forest fire and we were told to grab our things and get out as fast as we could. The first thing I went for wasn’t pictures or clothes, or anything to actually survive with. I grabbed my notebooks where my stories were, stuffed them in my back pack and I was good to go. I’d probably do the same thing now, which is why it’s good to have an emergency kit if you’re like me. Snatch up stories, snatch up the kit, and you won’t die. It was around that time that I realized how much I loved my stories. I knew I loved them before, but the span of it, I didn’t know.

What does it take to make you angry?

There are a number of things that can make me furious. One of them is if I’ve just mopped up the house and somebody tramps all over it with muddy shoes without thinking, or if I warn them the place is mopped and they walk in anyway. Of course, if somebody says something about my family, or does something to one of them, we are enemies. Another thing is my writing. If a person says it isn’t worth something, or starts trying to discourage me from it in any way and telling me how to “get my life together,” I hate them, write them off and their opinion becomes dirt to me. There was a woman once, who felt so much better for dropping out of school after finding out that after I had graduated college that I decided to write. She said it was nice to know of somebody “successful” who ended up not doing anything with her life. I wanted to skewer her stupid face, and no I don’t talk to her anymore.

What was the worse holiday you ever had and why?

I love Christmas, and I guess that’s why what happened to me happened at Christmas. I was eight years old. I had finally fallen asleep, but instead of dreaming of sugar plum fairies, I dreamed I was sitting in the living room. The back door in the kitchen was open, and outside was pitch black. I heard my mom tell me, “Close the door before it comes in.” I jumped up and ran to the door. I peeked outside for just a second. Usually I can see some of the yard, but in my dream, it was just an inky blackness. I tried to close the door, but “it” came in and I was too late. It was a thing in a long black cloak. He was so tall that he had to hunch over, and still he touched the ceiling. I jerked awake, but I couldn’t move. My eyes opened just a fraction. My limbs were glued down. I started to panic. Something was in the room with me and I couldn’t get away. I couldn’t even scream, although I tried to with all my might.

When I finally could move, I ran straight to my brother’s room and huddled on the bed next to him. We opened our presents and I couldn’t really enjoy myself. I had gotten the new Anastasia doll, too. When my mom told me to put my toys in my room, I just threw them in there and wouldn’t go back. I don’t care what people say about sleep paralysis. That wasn’t sleep paralysis.

What is your favourite childhood song and why?

My favorite childhood song is “Eye to Eye” from A Goofy Movie. When I was little, we lived in the Mexican barrios. Next door were the best three kids that I ever knew. It was two brothers and their sister. I thought of them as Yakko, Wakko and Dot from the Animaniacs.

We played every day and far into the night, having great adventures and telling scary stories. These three would come over and we would play Shadows of the Empire on the N64. We would watch and scream as the oldest brother would mess with the Wampas and run from them. Afterward, we would watch A Goofy Movie. The oldest brother would jump up and sing and dance to “Eye to Eye.” Now when I hear that song, I think of him, I think of them, and all the good days we had in the sweltering summers of Arizona.

What is the one item that you paid a lot of money for but have never used or regretted buying?

I’ve done a lot of dumb things in my life, so I’ll pick one. I bought these stupid shoes online. They said they were padded really well and were good for running. I put them on and I looked like I came out of the funny farm. When I tried running in them, they were so padded that they bounced and propelled me into the air. Not forward, but literally UP. When I landed, they sprang up on me and I flew into the air twice. I felt like I was walking on Mars. No gravity. The shoes were so high that I couldn’t even feel the ground, and I had no idea when my foot touched down. They were giant and boxy, so I was running with giant, floating boxes on my feet. Gosh, I hope nobody saw me.

About Pariahs (Ilings Book 1)

In a land of monsters and soulless creatures, there is a secluded compound terrorized by a fallen demon-killer, the Grand Apwor. He’s claimed its youngest occupant Vijeren as his son. The Grand Apwor can’t be killed, he can’t be escaped, and his punishments are severe and horrific. Somehow, he knows where Vijeren is at all times. When a law enforcer named Zhin appears like a living flame, a family war that’s been sizzling for decades finally ignites. It drags Vijeren in, revealing secrets of a long-forgotten past and a family torn asunder in recesses of lost memories. Only Zhin knows how to kill the Grand Apwor, but the answer rests on the love between a father and son–something that Vijeren doesn’t have…

 Head over and buy the book:

And Amazon UK:

Julia is also a contributor to a number of anthologies.

Read the reviews and buy the books:

and on Amazon UK:

Other Contributions to publications:

Read the reviews and follow Julia on Goodreads:

Connect to Julia


Thank you for joining us today and Julia would love to hear from you.. thanks Sally


Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Weekly Round Up – Social Media, Jazz, Tulips, Cookery, Guests, short stories, poetry and guests.

Welcome to the weekly round up of posts that you may have missed.

The social media shenanigans continued this week with Facebook failing to respond and telling those kind enough to share or tag me in comments that I had been reported for abusive content. I had received no response after four weeks of appeals and emails so decided to pull the plug on my account completely late last week. I cannot have other people being embroiled in this, and also I felt that my reputation as an individual and an author was under attack and was potentially damaging. Without recourse to prove my innocence, I feel that it is becoming an issue for Facebook in general. I know that I am not the only person to have been treated in this manner, and I doubt the situation will improve.

I was on Facebook for ten years and had made many friends who have been incredibly supportive. If I was reported for alleged abuse, it would seem that 4000 other contacts did not feel the same way, as they would I am sure simply unfriended me.

Thankfully I can connected to most of those on other platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn and now the developing MeWe. Because of that there has been no impact on the traffic to the blog, which I am pleased about because of the author promotions that run each week. The plus side is that I notice considerably less junk in my email spam folders which is interesting…..

If you are not already connected to me on those platforms then here are the links to my main sites.

LinkedIn: (a growing number of authors who after all are in business for themselves)
MeWe Personal:   (no ads, similar interface to Facebook, guarantee that they will not sell data)
MeWe – Authors Group with Debby Gies, Colleen Chesebro and other familiar names:
MeWe – Authors/Bloggers Circle:

Anyway.. onwards and upwards and here are the posts on Smorgasbord this last week. Enjoy….thanks Sally.

Yusef Abdul Lateef (born William Emanuel Huddleston; October 9, 1920 – December 23, 2013) was an American jazz multi-instrumentalist, composer, and prominent figure among the Ahmadiyya Community in America.

Paul Andruss wanted to make sure that tulips in all their glory, received a showcase and so has written an extra column this month to do just that.

In her second guest post, L.T. Garvin shares a poem about an event in history that is forever etched in the memories of people around the world… It is one of those events that people ask “Where were you when….?”

This week Joy Lennick shares some shenanigans from her visits to an old people’s home where life was celebrated as much as possible, and sometimes romance overcame the sensibilities…

In this week’s R’s of Life, I explore our right to Freedom of Speech and Religion and our obligations with regard to them.

This week getting a project plan in place with some easy to follow rules to keep you on the straight and narrow as you embark on this healthy weight loss programme.

Last Sunday I was the guest of educator and storyteller Norah Colvin as part of her new series School Day Reminiscences Norah asked me about my education and schooling and I had to delve back over 60 years to access those memories…

My response to the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge by Charli Mills offers us the prompt of a ‘bucket of water’. Following Elephants.

It is the time of the week when I attempt to get my syllables in a row to participate in Colleen’s Tuesday Poetry Challenge 128

This week we find a lost puppy… and decided to swap are rented furniture for second hand at a great price.

This week we share the possible symptoms resulting from a vitamin B2 deficiency, the best food sources and Carol Taylor shares some amazing recipes with those food as ingredients.

My guest today is American poet and author Lynda Lambert who shares what is in her briefcase and purse, her fashion sense, a book close to her heart and dreams.

Balroop Singh shares her experiences and views on the traditional Indian Wedding and the enormous burden of the expense of the lead up and event.

This week Darlene Foster shares the sad loss of a family farm due to wildfires in 2017. Buildings that had weathered many a storm, and sadly the fires also brought tragedy to the community.


In her first post from 2015, Norah Colvin who is a dedicated participant in the Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction challenge, was reminded about a family mystery. And she shares a way to share family relationships with young children.

This week Robbie Cheadle share a heartwarming poem about her son Michael.

Welcome to the last of the posts from Sharon Marchisello’s archives.This week the very important issue of keeping our elderly relatives safe with regard to their money should they become forgetful or worse develop dementia.

New Book on the Shelves

Author Update #Reviews

Thank you again for dropping by and your amazing support.. Have a wonderful week.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Sunday Interview – Getting to Know Lynda McKinney Lambert

My guest today is American poet and author Lynda Lambert who shares what is in her briefcase and purse, her fashion sense, a book close to her heart and dreams.

About Lynda Lambert

Lynda Lambert (b.1943) was born in Ellwood City,PA Her academic training is in Fine Arts and Literature. She was a professor of Fine Arts and Humanities until 2007 when her teaching career was cut short suddenly due to sight loss. Her art has been exhibited world wide since 1976.

Her first book _Concerti: Psalms for the Pilgrimage_ is a collection of essays, poems, and drawings she did over a 10 year period while teaching in Salzburg, Austria

Lynda McKinney Lambert lost much of her sight in the fall of 2007, cue to Ischemic Optic Neuropathy. She retired from teaching full-time a year later.

She writes and makes mixed-media fiber art full-time. She uses adaptive technologies for the blind to do her award-winning work. Lynda was determined to return to a creative life-style after her sudden sight loss. She went to live in a residency program for the blind for 3 months of intensive training. She attended the Blind and Vision Rehabilitation Services program in Pittsburgh, PA. in the spring of 2008.

Lynda enjoys daily walks with her husband and their 2 rescued dogs. They also have 2 cats and the couple care for a variety of feral cats that find food and a safe haven at their home. The couple have 5 great grandchildren, and 2 of them live just across the creek from their home.

Lynda with her great granddaughter, Bella who was in a school musical last fall.

Welcome Lynda and the first question is…How would you describe your fashion sense?

I described my fashion sense in a poem that’s in my latest book, Walking by Inner Vision: Stories & Poems.” The poem is “Adornment.” The poem was inspired by a friend who once told me, “I want to wear all of my jewelry at one time. I want to adorn myself with it all.” When I wrote the poem, it was a mixture of her sentiments, combined with my own passion for finely crafted accessories – hats, shoes, handbags, scarves, jewelry. I buy wearable artist-made works or high-end designer creations.

Here Lynda at the convention of the American Printing House for the Blind. Receiving an award by the president of American Printing House for the Blind for First Place in the exhibition InSights17.  And I think this perfectly reflects her fashion sense.

Knowing now, what you didn’t know then, what would you have done differently?

As a teenage girl in rural western Pennsylvania, I had a subscription to Harper’s Bazaar. I knew the name of every model and designer. This magazine was my dream world – I lived in it!

In my 40’s, I lived briefly in California where I worked evenings and weekends for Neiman Marcus. It is my single most memorable work experience. I was in heaven, for I loved high-end sales more than anything I ever did in my life. But, at that time, I was in the process of completing my 3rd degree and had to return to campus in PA to finish that. I had only 1 semester left to finish the MA in English, or, lose the 5-year period of work I completed for the degree. I’ve always wished I could have remained at NM for my entire career, but I was committed to completing my final academic goal.

What are the five things that you would always find in your handbag or briefcase?

During my final year of intense work on the rigorous MFA degree in Painting at West Virginia University (Morgantown, WV) I was a strange sight. Why? I knew I needed to start presenting a professional appearance in preparation for achieving my Plan A goal of becoming a professor. I quit carrying a back pack and purchased a handsome burgundy leather brief case.

After the MFA, I became Executive Director of a regional art. However, Plan A was to become a professor, so I was never satisfied

Plan A did become my reality when I accepted a tenure track position. I was professor of fine arts and humanities at a private college in Pennsylvania, until my retirement in 2008. This provided me with time to pursue my writing and art exhibitions world-wide.
Now, as a retired woman, I carry a variety of handbags that hold my wallet; lipstick which is a necessity; a little leather case I bought in Venice, that holds my house keys; my Betsy Johnson colorful sunglasses; 2 Visa cards.

Describe the strangest dream you’ve ever had.

I am a dreamer of everything irrational. I barely close my eyes and I am deep into a netherworld. I do not have pleasant dreams, usually. The most pleasant dreams I have, though, are when I am flying – I am untethered and free in flight.

My dreams are full of danger, drama, and situations that are terrifying and with no way of escape. I seldom have a dream that I would want to return to. Sleeping has never been a pleasure for me. I have severe sleep apnea and even with a c-pap, I am up all during the night. I usually work during the night, from 3-5 am since I cannot sleep. I don’t nap very often, for I have the same sort of absurd dreams.

Here is a link to a poem I wrote about my dreams. You can hear me reading it on this recording:

What is your all-time favorite book that you have read? And why?

Available Amazon

My favorite book would be Till We Have Faces, by C.S. Lewis. (Link is included below) I also have a study guide for it – but I never taught this book in a classroom when I was teaching.

I read it for the first time in the early 1980s. I entered into a mythological world that enchanted me completely. The story consumed me. The book is a re-telling of the Greek myth of Psyche and Eros. This story is one of my favorites along with the story of Persephone; also, of Eurydice and Orpheus – Greek mythology and other early writings are influences in my own writing and often set the historical context of my poems and essays. I like to go back to primary sources and trace down the time and place where an idea begins. Historical context is very important to me – for the credibility and deep meaning of ideas. They all have roots somewhere, and I try to locate them. (Lynda McKinney Lambert)

Link to information on these myths::

Books by Lynda McKinney Lambert

About Walking by Inner Vision

In this second collection, Pennsylvania artist, teacher, and author Lynda McKinney Lambert invites readers into her world of profound sight loss to discover the subtle nuances and beauty of a physical and spiritual world.

She takes strands from ancient mythology, history, and contemporary life and weaves a richly textured new fabric using images that are seen and unseen as she takes us on a year-long journey through the seasons.

All stories in this book were created after her sudden sight loss in 2007 from Ischemic Optic Neuropathy. Lambert invites us to see the world with new eyes.

One of the reviews for the book

Lynda fills this book with encouraging stories about things she loves including art, her beloved family, knitting, and poetry. Knowing she’s legally blind and accomplishing so much makes me really respect her as an author. She is living her life to the fullest no matter what! My favorite chapter is “The Living Room”, which focuses upon her sweet mother holding tightly onto family, memories, and Christmas traditions.

Also by Lynda McKinney Lambert

Discover more about Lynda’s books:

And Amazon UK:

Connect to Lynda

Website and blog:
Personal Facebook:
Author Page:

I will leave you with this lovely photograph of Lynda and her husband and a temporary house guest who know lives with their daughter. I now Lynda would love to hear from you. Thanks for dropping by.  Sally


Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Weekly Round Up – Social Media Shenanigans, Spring Flowers, Mexican Getaways, Italian Food, music, humour and Fabulous Guests

Welcome to the weekly round up of posts that you might have missed.

Firstly, an update on the Facebook debacle which only gets worse I am afraid. I know that several of you have been hit by blocked posts that contain links and are still having issues. I can comment, and share posts internally on Facebook but post links are still being blocked.

Disturbingly today that included the link to Debby Gies Sunday Interview which I sent to her in a Direct Message… supposedly private! It was blocked and in bold red told me that it did not meet community standards. I have appealed of course but it does have a warning for us all. Do not disclose private information in a direct message. For example if as they say Facebook is selling our data to health insurance companies, and we mention in a private message about a health issue we have to a friend, and then apply for insurance! Does that sound paranoid? Probably. What about your email address that you send in a message, or your postal address and the dates you will be away on vacation.

I had no illusions about Facebook but they have now embarked on a wholesale censorship programme that is unacceptable. They want you to have a page where they can bombard you with messages to boost your post to thousands of others at a cost. And they want to encourage you to buy from one of their advertisers and when you do, by all accounts you never hear the last of them.

I have friends and family on Facebook and I can at least for the time being share your posts from there. But over the next few weeks as MeWe grows and develops and the author’s group which now has nearly 50 members – I will be only using Facebook sparingly to stay in touch and to share others work internally. Eventually, I will be closing my account as I won’t be blackmailed or have any more of my private messages intercepted.

On a brighter note.. I have done the sums and the statistics show that the referrals to the blog is approximately 10%…thankfully most of those who share from Facebook are also contacts on Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest or other sites that I am a member of such as MeWe. My main concern was for the book promotions that I post for other authors but after two weeks there has been no change to the response which is a relief.

Thank you for all your support and I appreciate all the shares to FB from here in the past, but I have now permanently removed the share button, as I don’t want you to be faced with messages from FB telling you that it is not allowed. They are intimidating and offer not recourse so I am done.

And as an aside.. new users are asked for a photograph before they are allowed to sign up for an account. It can take several days to get back to you. But in the meantime with facial recognition they can have mined a great deal of information about who you are and your history online. Whilst this does mean that the fake generals and other trolls will not be accepted, it also means that they can pick and choose who they admit to the site and if you do not fit their profile as a potential buyer of the advertising that they send your way… who knows where it will lead!

It is now affecting millions of users and you might find this post interesting sourced by Carol Taylor:

On with the posts from the week, and as always I am very grateful to the contributors who spend time and a great deal of effort to write columns and guest articles.

Welcome to Debby Gies March edition of her Travel Column where she shares the first part of her trip and two month vacation in Puerto Vallarta in Mexico.. and the flight did not go as planned!

This week Paul Andruss shares the bulbs that will make your late spring garden abundant with colour.

This week my guest is regular contributor non-fiction author D.G. Kaye, Debby Gies who reveals her contents of her purse, fashion sense, strangest dream and her love (hate) of the vacuum!

This week Silvia Todesco shares a fabulous recipe for oven baked, bacon wrapped cod which has to be a family favourite..

This week we look at the health benefits of honey… and Carol Taylor uses this as an ingredient in some stunning dishes.

A new series looking at ‘One Hit Wonders‘ from the 1950s onwards….this week ‘Lollipop’ by Ronald and Ruby…who were they, were are they now?

My response to Colleen’s Tuesday Poetry Challenge 127 and this week the prompt words are ‘Follow and Lead’…. I have chosen ‘Succeed and Hint’ as my synonyms.

A further look at the rights as laid down by the United Nation that we should all be entitled to, but have an obligation to protect.

It is March 1986 and we drive back from Atlanta in one day.. and attend a BBQ cookout in Conroe Texas, this is my letter home to my parents in the UK.

This week’s Carrot Ranch Flash Fiction Challenge by Charli Mills involves a chisel…as a noun or a verb… you will also enjoy Charli’s description of the thaw that is occurring on her finger (or thumb) that reaches out in to Lake Superior- here is my response – The Dancer.

Before you Get Started on your weight loss programme– Managing People, Environment and your expectations

This week Balroop Singh shares her experience of arranged marriages and her own happy relationship.

This week Darlene Foster finds and visits the grave of her great-great-grandmother.


In this post Jennie Fitzkee shares the connections that she was able to make between reading Little House on the Prairie and her own grandfather from a similar era and his experiences of mining.


This week Robbie Cheadle shares a wonderful poem that she wrote on 9th of February 2017 which was her sixteenth Wedding Anniversary…


Sharon Marchisello shares the strategies that her mother employed to make the most of every penny.

Bette Stevens shares a moving poem in tribute to her mother.

New book on the shelves

Author Updates – Reviews

Thank you very much for all your support and I would love to hear from you about any of the posts or if you would like some book promotion. .Have a great week.. thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Sunday Interview – Getting to Know author Ann Barnes

This week my guest is Ann Barnes who shares the animal she would like to have a conversation with, her weirdest dream, what is in her handbag, and what she would have done differently.

First a little more about my guest..

My name is Ann Harrison-Barnes. I am a blind author whose blog posts, published books and stories come straight from my heart. I am the proud mother of a precious little girl named Sharen. She is the inspiration for many of my stories, especially the ones that feature children as characters in them.

I have found music to be a great source of healing throughout a rough and painful time in my life. For the past seven years as a writer, I have found, and still find, music as a source of inspiration to this day. In many of the various blog posts on this site, I have written essays about music as it pertains to healing, everyday life, writing and much more, along with essays about winter, snow, and other reflections about my belief system.

I also review audio books and eBooks that have touched my heart, or affected me in a unique way. I will also review books for authors, in exchange of a review of my own books.

From time to time, I will also interview my characters and sneak in on character conversations about upcoming novels I’m working on, so you can learn more about them from behind the scenes.

Welcome Ann and If animals could talk, which one would you have a conversation with?

I would have a talk with a dog, especially if I owned and handled it as a guide dog. I had a guide dog named star; therefore, I wonder what stories she’d tell. I hope she wouldn’t tell bad things about me, but I do want to know about her puppy raisers and what other animals she’s been around. Maybe if guide dogs could talk, we blind handlers could give them much more explanation about why they shouldn’t do certain things. How about telling the dog where I want to go instead of giving basic commands such as forward, left, right, sit, down, stay, etc. I wonder what my mom’s dog would have told me before she passed away.

What are the five things that you would always find in your handbag or briefcase?

First of all, I’d always find my check book. I keep it in my purse so I can get help writing a check as needed while I’m out and about with my parents or friends. The second thing I find in my purse is a miniature first aid kit, full of Band-Aids. I keep those on hand in case either my daughter or I get a minor injury while we’re on the go. The third thing I find in my purse is a pair of ear buds that came with my phone. I keep those for listening to either a books or podcasts on long road trips. I’ll find my newly acquired signature stamp for autographing books and quickly signing other documents. Finally, although this isn’t the very last thing I’ll find, in the front zipper pocket I carry a tube of ointment that was prescribed to me to prevent staph infections, since I had one back in October of last year.

Describe the strangest dream you’ve ever had.

I could tell you several, but the one dream that is strange, yet has recurred from time to time over the past few years is one in which I am climbing. This dream takes on many forms; however, the one form that I remember most is that of me climbing up a moving ramp. From what I remember, this ramp looked like a treadmill, but you moved uphill as the tread moved in the opposite direction.

When I climbed to the top, I reached out to touch the wall or door in front of me. As I did so, an evil man came out to the top of the ramp where I stood. He spoke in a deep rumbling voice. He reached toward me and stuck a sharp object into my shirt collar. I don’t mean that he stuck a knife down my shirt; however, this felt like a cactus or something similar.

Before I woke up, I found myself back at the bottom of the ramp. I remember begging and pleading a familiar figure for forgiveness. I guess I was mortified for boldly reaching out at the top of the ramp to orient myself to my surroundings. Maybe I wasn’t supposed to leave the ramp unbidden, but I don’t know why. It stuck with me most of the day and inspired me to come up with a writing prompt for my writing group. Anyway, she hugged me and we prayed together. That’s the last thing I remember before the dream faded away. One more thing I want to say, before I move onto the next question is this, when I have dreams of climbing, I can never climb down the ramp, stairs, ladder etc. I always have to climb all the way to the top and find another way back to where I started.

Do you prefer the big city or country life?

I prefer to live in the country. I’ve lived in Atlanta and Athens, GA before, and I find that I don’t get much inspiration for my writing from the noises of the city. However, now that I’m back home near my family, I find that sitting on the front porch swing on a warm sunny day is the best spot for brainstorming. I love to listen to wind chimes and let their melodious tinkle sing out inspiration to me. My characters often talk to me while I’m outside. However, even when I stay inside, the country is much quieter than the city and I can listen to my music and let my imagination run wild.

Sally here: I have found a short piece of wind chimes… hopefully a reminder to Ann of sitting on her porch courtesy of Syd’s Room

Knowing now, what you didn’t know then, what would you have done differently?

If I knew that both my first and my second husband would have been emotionally abusive as I do now, I probably wouldn’t have gotten married in the first place. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I love my daughter and she’s the most precious gift I could have received from God, but her life would have been significantly different if she’d had a different father or if I’d have taken her with me when I got a divorce.

The one thing I can say about my second husband, is that I noticed the warning signs of abuse and “saw” the red flags flying in the wind, before I got seriously hurt. I’ve always heard people say “If I knew then, what I know now…” when I was a kid. Now I can honestly say I know what that phrase means.

My thanks to Ann for being so open with her responses especially about the personal issues she has faced

Books by Ann Barnes

About the book

When a young girl takes a ride on a gravy train with her mother, she finds unexpected adventures and mysteries waiting for her as they glide down the cookie track. What happens to the track, and why do the biscuit wheels crumble at one point, and turn to mush near the Ferry Land station? Who is behind the mayhem in the land of Eat-a-Lot? Find out as this charming children’s adventure unfolds before your very eyes.

One of the reviews for the book

Elizabeth Horton-Newton, Author 5.0 out of 5 stars An Imaginative and Fun Book May 28, 2018

I purchased this book for my seven-year-old granddaughter who is well above her grade level in reading. Together we discovered a delightful story by Ann Barnes, “Maggie’s Gravy Train Adventure: An Electric Eclectic Book.”

The story begins with little Maggie Walker and her mother Marie setting off an adventure to a magical land called Eat-a-lot. Boarding a train powered by gravy with wheels made of biscuits they meet a conductor named Thomas who is made of gingerbread. The train runs along tracks made of cookies. Everything in this story is related to tasty treats. Soon they are waiting to be served their breakfast by their waiter Chocolate Chip.

Unfortunately, the biscuit wheels begin to crumble. Rosy the baker, with help from a fairy named Sprite, begins to hurriedly make fresh biscuits. Soon the train is moving again.

Colorful adventures follow as the train makes the journey to Eat-a-lot. As they pass through an ice storm and Fairyland, Maggie and her mother meet a little girl named Mandy and her mother.

There are mysteries that the girls solve along the way. Finally arriving in Eat-a-lot, they meet Rosy Posy’s sister, Betty Spaghetti. They stay in the Cake Batter Inn and get to explore the land of Eat-a-lot.

All in all, this is a cute story for children. Independent readers will appreciate learning some new words, and younger readers will be able to follow along easily as they are read to. I recommend this book to children five and older. Younger children may need a parent to read to them, but older children and children who read early can enjoy this imaginative story with no trouble. In my granddaughter’s words, this is a fun book.

Read the reviews and buy the book:

and on Amazon UK:

Also by Ann Barnes

Read the reviews and buy the books:

Connect to Ann


Thank you for dropping in today and Ann would love to hear from you.. thanks Sally.

If you would like to join the other participants and be interviewed here then please take a look at this post:

If you are interested in moving away from Facebook to a more user friendly site, then perhaps you would like to join us on MeWe, where a new group is being formed for authors to promote their books and reviews:


Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – The Sunday Interview – Getting to Know author Audrey Driscoll

This week my guest is Canadian author Audrey Driscoll who shares the contents of her purse, her phobia, love of Tofino and how she would love to be invisible for a day….

First a little bit about Audrey Driscoll

I grew up reading books, and became interested in making stories myself. I worked out scenes and bits of dialogue, and made my friends act out little dramas based on my favourite book at the time – Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book.

With that background, it was inevitable I would become a writer. It just took a while. After establishing a career as a librarian – first at the University of Saskatchewan and then at the Greater Victoria Public Library in British Columbia – I had a meaningful encounter with H.P. Lovecraft’s character Herbert West.

Strangely fascinated by HPL’s corpse-reanimating physician and his friend the nameless narrator, I built a set of stories around them. In 2000, I was compelled to write them down. The result was The Friendship of Mortals and three more novels, which constitute the Herbert West Series. Self-publishing became respectable and relatively easy just in time to rescue me from the sad fate of the Unpublished Writer.

Reluctant to abandon the characters I had spent so much time with, I wrote and recently published several short stories as supplements to the Herbert West Series. I am currently at work on a sequel to the series.

My other interest is gardening a patch of earth on southern Vancouver Island. I post about that at least as often as I do about books and writing — with pictures! To me, writing and gardening are forms of alchemy — a mysterious process of creating excellence from the chaos of the world.

Time to find out what questions Audrey has selected to respond to…..

Welcome Audrey and perhaps you could begin by telling us what are the five things that you would always find in your handbag or briefcase?

Well, let’s have a look… Aside from the obvious, such as wallet, keys, and phone, I always have the following:

One. My Laguiole knife.  It’s an elegant folding knife made in France. You never know when you might need to slice an apple, cut a string, or… deal with an awkward situation.


Two. A bright red shopping bag that, rolled up, is no bigger than a hot cross bun. Now that plastic bags are banned where I live (a move I agree with), it’s come in handy on many a sudden shopping occasion.

Three. A tiny flashlight. Everyone knows you need a light in dark places.

Four. A piece of string. Well, actually it’s a boot lace, but it can do anything a string can. This is another of those “You never know” items.

Five. A notebook and pen, for writing down brilliant ideas. Of course, they’re never as brilliant as the ones that get away.

What was the one thing you could never learn to do no matter how hard you tried?

I’ve never managed to learn to swim properly, despite taking lessons several times. I can float, tread water, and execute a half-decent back stroke and breast stroke. I can’t for the life of me do the crawl. Sticking my face into the water to exhale just feels wrong. I end up holding my breath, which kind of limits endurance. For the most part this hasn’t been a problem. We live a short walk from a nice beach, but the water is almost always too cold for swimming, and I have to admit I’m not keen on swimming pools. You just never know what’s in that water.

Sally: Perhaps these guys might persuade you to change your mind about swimming pools Audrey

Where is your favourite holiday destination and why?

For relaxation-type holidays (as distinct from challenging ones), my number one choice is Tofino, on the west coast of Vancouver Island. It’s a half-day’s drive from Victoria, where I live, but getting there feels like a journey rather than a mere trip. You travel from the built-up, suburbanized east coast of the island, over its rocky spine, into what’s left of the temperate rainforest with clear, fast-running rivers and streams, and finally to the long beaches on the fringe of the world. The town has all the amenities you need, but the feeling of having reached the end of the road pervades the place. Many people have come for a visit and stayed forever. Whether you like surfing, kayaking, or just walking the beaches and watching the endless waves, it’s a wonderful, spiritually renewing place. Many WordPress bloggers get to enjoy photos of its birds, wildlife and scenery through Wayne’s blog, Welcome to Tofino

Sally: I have long been a fan of Wayne Barnes and his stunning photography and Tofino is on our list of ‘Must See’ places… here is a short promotional film by Tracker Productions

Do you have a phobia and do you remember how it started?

I’m not sure this is an actual phobia, but I have an irrational and uncontrollable fear of being in a sailboat that’s heeling over. This is a natural and expected behaviour of sailboats when sailing close to the wind. You really can’t sail without experiencing it. Most people think it’s great fun when the boat tilts at 20 or 30 degrees, water washes over the bow, the rigging clangs, and the wind screams. Me? I’m clinging to handholds and praying to get back to shore. This was a real disappointment, because after reading Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons books I thought sailing would be wonderful. My terror definitely put a crimp in several sailing expeditions, until I gave up and declared myself a landlubber by nature.

If you were to become invisible for a day, what is the one thing you would do?

Spy on people, what else? I’d mingle with crowds, people-watching and eavesdropping, without being suspected of creepiness. In my trusty notebook (which would, I hope, share my invisibility), I would record impressions and snippets of conversations for future writing projects. I’m thinking outdoor venues would be best, to avoid awkward collisions. And unless I could be certain the invisibility would last for the entire day, I’d have to be ready to look uninterested in case I suddenly popped into view. In fact, this scenario in itself might make a good story!

Books by Audrey Driscoll

About She Who Comes Forth

The novel is a standalone sequel to the Herbert West Series. Readers who enjoy a combination of realistic adventure and supernatural elements in an exotic setting — Luxor, Egypt and the Theban Necropolis — may wish to have a look.

October 1962. The developing nuclear missile crisis in Cuba is of no concern to Francesca “France” Leighton. Recently turned 21, France travels from her home in Providence to a job at an archaeological dig in Luxor, Egypt. She takes with her two legacies—an emerald ring from the grandfather she never knew, and an antique cello from his friend, a man she loved like a grandfather.

The dig disappoints. France is relegated to sorting chunks of stone, the dig’s director makes unwanted advances; rivalries and mistrust are everywhere. And it’s too darn hot! Tasked with playing her cello at a gathering of archaeologists, France meets the enigmatic and fascinating nuclear physicist Adam Dexter. She’s smitten, especially when he promises to show her the secrets of Egypt, including a hitherto undiscovered tomb.

After a risky balloon cruise ends in a crash landing, France is forced to leave the dig. Despite warnings against solo explorations on the west bank, she finds herself with Adam Dexter in an eerie house near the Theban Necropolis. Adam’s promises are alluring, but he is both more and less than he seems and his motivations are disturbing. Fleeing his house, France makes a horrifying discovery.

Through an image of Osiris, France discovers the true reason for her presence in the Theban Necropolis. As the world teeters on the brink of nuclear war, she must call upon resources both within and beyond herself to meet the perils that await her in the world of the dead beneath the Western Peak.

One of the recent reviews for the book

I absolutely loved the Herbert West series, and ‘She Who Comes Forth’ kind of picks up where the 4th book ends.

The protagonist is related to Herbert West and shares some of his occult ability. It is this ability, and a mysterious ring, that cause young France Leighton to become involved in a supernatural tussle of wills…in Egypt.

Along the way she meets an intriguing stranger who is not at all what he seems.

But before you think this will be a standard romance set in an exotic location, think again. There’s that twist, right?

I found She Who Comes Forth to be a very enjoyable read and I highly recommend it.

Read the reviews and buy the book :

And Amazon UK :


A selection of other books by Audrey Driscoll

Read the reviews and buy the books:

And Amazon UK:

Read more reviews and follow Audrey on Goodreads:

Connect to Audrey

Barnes & Noble:”Audrey%20Driscoll

Thank you for dropping in today and I know Audrey would love to hear from you.. thanks Sally

If you would like to participate in the Sunday Interview Series and share your blog and books, then please check out this post:

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – Jazz, Chicken Poop, Chopped liver, Old Age, Australia and Sheep farming!

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

Despite some grey and misty starts to the days, there has been a trending upward curve in the temperatures and the hedgerows and gardens locally are beginning to show signs of spring. For someone who does not do short days, devoid of sun, and usually wet, this is a great shift in the weather. All my years as a child and adult living in sunnier climates makes it a challenge. I must admit to becoming a bit of a hermit from October to March and guess in a previous life I must have been a bear!  I can be be grumpy enough at times, especially when I wake from a long sleep and am hungry and thirsty.

Thankfully there have been some offline activities this week that have been great fun and people and laughter make all the difference.

Apart from that…. it has been a great week here online with a new job for me, having been invited to be an administrator for The Literary Diva’s Library on Facebook, alongside Colleen Chesebro and D.G.Kaye… and Colleen has added me into the group banner and if you click that, it will take you to the page where you can share book reviews for yourself and crucially for others, and also author interviews and news. The more members we have the more effective the group will be in supporting authors.

If you are an author and would like to be part of a group that supports and promotes other authors then please head to Facebook by clicking the image.

As always I would like to thank the contributors to the blog who inform and entertain you. This includes those participating in the new Posts from Your Archives series which is all about the family.. If you click on one of the posts it will give you the details on how to share your posts to a new audience. You can also become a guest writer with any new material that you would like to share… you can email me for details if you are interested sally.cronin(at)

Welcome to the music column with William Price King and this week the featured artist is Ted Nash, Saxophonist and Composer  and his work Portrait in Seven Shades.

In this week’s re-run of Paul Andruss’s gardening column, he promotes the beneficial properties of chicken poop for the garden…

A new series of Cook from Scratch with myself and Carol Taylor. This time looking at nutrients and the symptoms that you might be deficient in them.. I share the signs and the foods to include to avoid becoming deficient, and Carol turns them into delicious meals for all the family. This week Vitamin A..

In this week’s chapter I look at the amount of sugar that is hidden in our diet and how Candida Albicans thrives on this food, fueling the overgrowth in our gut.

My guest today is author Sheila Williams who lives in France, but in the past has enjoyed several careers, including that of sheep farmer (more about that later!). Sheila shares a mortifying experience in a restaurant, her fashion sense, the contents of her handbag and a tussle with a persistent romeo ram (of the sheep variety!)

This week Linda shares ‘Family Talk’ the expressions that become a code that every member of the family understands.

Australian author Frank Prem shares his love of his hometown, and the inspiration behind his recently released collection of poems and stories.. Small Town Kid.

Joy shares a poem that expresses the joys of being young at heart at eighty-three years old…

As a follow on from the Valentine’s Day post of romantic ballads, here are some of the requests with more to come on Tuesday.

My guest today is poet Miriam Hurdle who wrote a post in 2017 at Thanksgiving. It was an eventful time with Miriam in recovery from an operation for cancer and her daughter about to give birth.


D.G. Kaye, Debby Gies, shares the signs that you are in an abusive relationship, and from personal experience, she inspires those who are trapped in a cycle of abuse to break free.

Delighted that author Sue Vincent is sharing a post from her archives, particularly as it is all about dogs that have been a part of her family, going back generations.

In respect of this series, where I explore some of the key elements of our modern lives, I take a light-hearted look at love and romance. Well partly light-hearted, as there are some elements of this universally sought after state of bliss that can be from the dark side.

New book on the shelves

Author updates

This week my etheree is on the Joys of Spring….in response to Colleen’s Tuesday Poetry Challenge 124

Thank you for all you support and look forward to seeing you again next week.. Thanks Sally.