Car Commercials and Birthdays

It’s that time of year. The time when car commercials begin subtly hinting that this year a Jaguar or new SUV would be the perfect gift. And while I wouldn’t say no to a Jaguar (even if it DID have 981 miles on it), that really isn’t my idea of a good gift. Rather, thisContinue reading “Car Commercials and Birthdays”

Appalachian Thursday – Thanksgiving Hog Killing

I was talking to Dad about Thanksgiving when he was a child and learned that it was often hog killing day in Appalachia. Everyone was off work and gathering together anyway, so it was a good day for many hands to make light work. While I’m glad NOT to be spending today scraping a hogContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Thanksgiving Hog Killing”

Appalachian Thursday – Glad for Montana

No, not the state. I often brag about how the people of Appalachia are pretty fantastic. Well, this week, a young man named Montana helped prove my point. I’ve mentioned before that my Dad has Parkinson’s Disease. Every six months or so I head home and we go visit his neurologist at the WVU MedicalContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Glad for Montana”

Taking a vacation–of sorts

This week I’m taking the closest thing to a vacation I ever do. It’s a week off from work to spend time with my family. It’s not exactly a trip to the beach, a cruise, or a European getaway, but it’s what I love–being on the family farm and hanging out with the people whoContinue reading “Taking a vacation–of sorts”

Appalachian Thursday – A Poor Harvest

I’ve mostly given up trying to grow our food. I keep a pot of herbs and this year I grew a cherry tomato in a pot near the front porch. Based on what I paid for the plant and the number of tomatoes I picked, I’d say I broke even on that one. But, likeContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – A Poor Harvest”

Appalachian Thursday – Firearms

My latest novella–A Shot at Love–releases next Tuesday. It’s part of The Christmas Heirloom, a collection of stories that follows a piece of jewelry from Regency England to modern-day America. Now, these are romances–sweet stories of finding true love. But when you write Appalachian fiction true love doesn’t have to come wrapped in hearts andContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Firearms”

Appalachian Thursday – Sang Hunting

While in West Virginia last weekend my brother showed me some ginseng plants. He was checking them to see if they had seeds he could plant to spur future growth. He gathered up the red fruit with seeds inside and sowed them in a new spot. Seeds need 18+ months to germinate so if we’reContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Sang Hunting”

French Creek Pioneers

I had the pleasure of attending the French Creek Pioneers gathering this past weekend with my dad and brother. This is a meeting of folks descended from the original settlers of French Creek, Va., back in the early 1800s (before West Virginia became a state). There were Goulds, Youngs, Smallridges, Sextons, and Phillips among others.Continue reading “French Creek Pioneers”

Appalachian Thursday – Reclaiming “Hillbilly”

There’s been some talk lately about how hillbilly is a derogatory word that shouldn’t see the light of day. So I’m going on the record to say I not only don’t mind the word, but that I think we should reclaim it. Consider the word’s origin (or etymology if you prefer): hill + Billy. SoContinue reading “Appalachian Thursday – Reclaiming “Hillbilly””

Laying Up Treasure

This past weekend a good friend and her family hosted a yard sale to empty out her grandparents’ house. Health issues and advancing years have forced the couple into a facility and it’s time to think about selling the little house they’ve lived in for so long. Thistle and I stopped by for moral supportContinue reading “Laying Up Treasure”