April 6, 2020

Checkers? Amelia Island's Mark of a Man Excerpt


Families play games and have been forever.  One of these games is checkers and so checkers is a natural choice for the fictional Dunnigan family from the late 1800s in Fernandina on Amelia Island, in north Florida. Through the magic of electronics, we offer a passage from a particular day in the lives of the loving and complicated Irish American Dunnigans.  

Amelia Island's Mark of a Man Excerpt:
Pat Dunnigan
     More hours churned past to solidify into days and no further word of Pat was forthcoming. Peeper was physically and mentally less than chipper. Her right foot, bothering her, with a single length of rope under her arch, she'd fashioned a sling. 

 Peeper
Pulling on both ends of the line to help lift her foot, it took the pressure off her aching hip. Settled in the rocker on the front porch, she cogitated upon her pet, the lad she'd alternately hollered after then rewarded ever since his birth. Until she was able to ply him with her potions and plasters, she would not and could not relax. 
     The white thread with which she sewed a mother-of-pearl button onto Pat's shirt was being difficult. "This danged thread is gonna be the death a me. If'n this string don't stop atwistin' and I git one more knot—" Frustration was all, and she set aside her labors.     
     "Come on, Peep," Nugget whined at her a fourth time. "It won't hurt any to play checkers with me. My Daddy said checker playin' is a good way to pass the time. I like to play Chinese checkers, too, but Blackie White Spots eats too many of the marbles."
Clover
     Peeper took a sip of the rose water she'd brewed earlier and concentrated on the cool of it, feeling it slither past her gullet, clear down to her empty belly. She felt only slightly better, but not enough to take away her misery.
     Clover walked past as she reminded, "Clove, put on your list that when it's time ta cut some-a them lavender spikes I been ababyin' all winter's long, you'll need ta spread 'em out on your tack room floor. It takes most a my grownin' powers ta make 'um sprout in pots, 'stead a the ground, but if'n it's the only way ta get that sweet smell fer ya, I'm awillin' ta do it. Now, the more ya walk about on the lavender, the more odiferous it 'ull be."  
     "You're so good to me, Peeper, but how about we bundle the stocks for the girls to hang in their rooms and maybe you can fill some fancy-work little bags with lavender for their drawers, too. The truth of it is the last time, it made my place and 'specially me, smell like a fancy house, for true!"
     "What's a fancy house, Clove?" asked an always-curious Nugget.
     "Ah, it's a—Peep, would you tell Nugget? You might-could describe it better."
     Not missing a beat, she explained straight away, "A fancy house is where men goes ta drink whiskey and dance with girls and it's no place fur ya ta ever set foot in. Remember we was awalkin' downtown Tuesdee last and I went ta coverin' your eyes? That was when we crossed afore one-a them places.  They shoon't allow such sinful spots in our town. You do like I'm atellin' ya now!"
     "Yes'm, Peep," Nugget said, remembering they'd passed the loud banjo music and sour smell of whiskey coming from what he thought might be a fancy house. Uncle Pat liked to drink whiskey. If whiskey was good for Uncle Pat, he would give it a try when he got bigger. Peeper just worried too much.
     Peeper looked to Nugget, the boy in whom she saw the same coloring and sweetness as her Bird of the Earth, Pat. She turned her head away so he would not see her crying. He did. "Git your Peeper a hankie, would ya, lamb. My glass is adrippin' onta my skirt. Then I'll play ya one game and I'll be abeatin' ya in half a dozen moves. I wanna be red.  Red's my faver-rite color." 
     So happy Peeper was willing to play, Nugget was gone in a shot to get her the requested handkerchief. Rushing up the stairs to her room, he wondered why she didn't use the one tucked in her belt or the one stuffed in her sleeve.
     Peeper dried her eyes with the pink edged hankie from her cuff.  In these difficult times, she needed the security of an extra handkerchief. She gathered up her sewing once again and as she struggled to re-thread her needle, her eyesight no longer sharp, she decided she had no business sniveling like Aunt Noreen. "Enough of this here silliness," Peeper scolded herself.  "Don't give up, old gal. Jack Patrick  'ull come home. I know that certain. He just has ta." She squeezed her eyes shut and when she opened them, there stood Nugget, holding out a linen napkin, watching her.
     "Glad you found your sleeve hanky 'cause I couldn’t find your pile in the u  sual spot. I snatched up this thing from the table so I wouldn't be so long."
      "Thank ya, kindly." Setting her sewing back into the pine needle basket on the side table, she said seriously, "If you're afinished lolly-gaggin', I'd like ta win me a game a checkers."
     "Yes, ma'am!" They were still setting up the board, when Nugget announced, "I'm gonna have more king-mees than you, Peep!" His wide grin showed straight baby teeth, a precursor of what would be a beautiful but impish smile.
     She smiled back.  "Just like my Pat."
     From his office window, Michael watched his grandson and Peeper engrossed in activity. Ella, Carolena and Breelan were with him, discussing the drop in passenger revenue, due directly to the Spanish madmen. Although Pat's name was not mentioned, he was uppermost in all thoughts.      

*********

Ebooks and Paperbacks in The Goodbye Lie series available now:

The Goodbye Lie 

Amelia Island's Velvet Undertow

Amelia Island's Mark of a Man



April 5, 2020

Palm Sunday 2020


Since we can't attend church this year 
to wave our palms, 
we display them on our Easter cross for all to see. 

March 25, 2020

A Little More of the Irish with Orchid and Goodbye Lie Diaries - Michael


     I embroidered this Irish Blessing many moons ago. I was given the lovely orchid recently and set it on our antique Victrola (a hand wound record player).  My eye caught the combination of the Irish and the pale yellow flowers and I snapped a photo. Too pretty not to share.  - Jane Marie, present day


********

The Goodbye Lie Diaries

Late 1880s
Fernandina on Amelia Island


 Michael
 Dunnigan
*Michael Dunnigan writes: I highly approve of the blessing and the pretty flowers.  You know, me mother told me they don't know for certain, but some say this prayer was written by St. Patrick, Himself. I like to think so.

*Michael is patriach to the Dunnigans in Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida. His moments in life run from beloved father and husband to cantankerous and shock-inducing male in The Goodbye Lie series.

February 29, 2020

Imagination Fun Plus The Goodbye Lie Diaries - Pat Dunnigan

     What are the odds I would look down and see a sweet little duck face looking up at me?  Yes, just like that, I spied a leaf in the image of a duck head, complete with eye and orangish colored beak!  So keep your eyes ever-moving. The next time you see one thing that could be interpreted as another, send me an email (graciousjanemarie@yahoo) with the image and I'll credit you and share with the rest of the world. (It will have to meet our family-friendly tasteful test, of course.) Hey, discovery of stuff is fun and that is part of the wonder of living!  
***
*The Goodbye Lie Diaries

Jack Patrick Dunnigan aka Pat
Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida
Late 1880s

Pat writes:
     I'm thinking I was about nine years old when I
Pat Dunnigan
found a rock that looked like Mr. Ruddyeater's hairy nose.  It even had moss growing out the noseholes. I lost it back then in a bet with Wally Blackburn, the fella who still lives on the houseboat to the north.  He said he could eat more tar than me.  I tried, but I'm glad he won.



***
*The Goodbye Lie Diaries Explained:

Herein are the personal words from the players in my historic romance series, The Goodbye Lie, set in the late 1800s on Amelia Island, Florida.  These diaries were created because friends of the novels and E-books often contact me saying they want to catch glimpses of the day-to-day goings-on of their beloved characters, as they read or finish reading the books.

What becomes of Breelan Dunnigan, the innocently inquisitive writer, her parents, spoiling Michael and nearly perfect Miss Ella Dunnigan, Captain Waite Taylor, tortured by honor, Aunt Noreen, everyone's less than favorite relative, Pat Dunnigan, the bad boy with good intentions, sometimes, Grandmother Peeper and her elixer-fixer potions ... ?  

If you've not yet met these most interesting folks, step onto the island called Amelia Island and into the small Victorian seaside town of Fernandina, a world all its own,  Read of their suspense filled adventures and deep and heart-wrenching loves in The Goodbye Lie, Amelia Island's Velvet Undertow and Amelia Island's Mark of a Man.  -jmm


            Get E-books and Paperbacks
                              HERE!




February 22, 2020

The Goodbye Lie Diaries - Aunt Noreen

Late 1800s
Aunt Noreen
Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida

Aunt Noreen writes:
     You know how I dislike complainers, so this is merely an observation. Why is it whenever that brother of mine offers me his homemade blackberry wine, and I ask for a small sipping glass, he gives me a large footed goblet, filled to nearly overflowing? Clabe says Michael is only being generous, but I think he is doing this deliberately. Perhaps he wants folks to think I am either a glutton or an alcoholic.  Well, everyone knows to waste anything is a sin. Therefore, I am forced to drain the glass. At least, the wine is quite tasty.  I dare not tell Michael this for fear he might get the big head. In any event, he was always a bratty brother. Yes, it must be deliberate.
***
The Goodbye Lie Diaries Explained:

Herein are the personal words from the players in my historic romance series, The Goodbye Lie, set in the late 1800s on Amelia Island, Florida.  These diaries were created because friends of the novels and E-books often contact me saying they want to know more about the day-to-day goings-on of their beloved characters, as they read or finish reading the books.

What becomes of Breelan, the reporter, her parents, Michael and Miss Ella Dunnigan, of Waite, captain of the Gentle Comfort of the Aqua Verdi Passenger Line,  Aunt Noreen, everyone's less than favorite relative and elixir-fixer Grandmother Peeper? 

If you've not yet met these most interesting folks, enter their world to read about their suspenseful adventures and heart-laden loves in The Goodbye Lie, Amelia Island's Velvet Undertow and Amelia Island's Mark of a Man.  -jmm


           Get E-books and Paperbacks
                              HERE!



February 12, 2020

Fall in Love, Again and Again and Again

 

 The best love stories continue long after you've turned the last page ...

- Jane Marie

The Goodbye Lie Series
 The Lure, The Love, The Legend

    Set in north Florida in the Victorian seaside town of Fernandina on Amelia Island in the late 1800s, the Irish-American Dunnigan family has four adult siblings and each is very different from the other. Their individual stories will take you back to a time where honor and treachery face off, where customs and social graces govern. The results will sometimes shock you, sometimes surprise or anger, touch or tickle you. Your roller coaster of emotions, powered by the reading of the novels, may stimulate and exhaust you. But you'll come back for more, once you discover The Goodbye Lie, Amelia Island's Velvet Undertow and Amelia Island's Mark of a Man

Don't say you weren't warned!




 E-books and Paperbacks HERE 
VICTORIAN SOUTHERN FICTION
Oh, the LURE, the LOVE, the LEGEND... 

of THE GOODBYE LIE
 historical mystery-romance series
 set on Amelia Island, Florida
 in the late 1800s

*****
P.S.  Someone sent me the photo of the lovely rose heart pictured at the beginning of this post.  They didn't know the source, so neither do I.  If anyone can tell me, please email graciousjanemarie@yahoo.com and I will happily and speedily credit that source.  Thank you,  jmm

February 3, 2020

Garlic Bread Pizza

     Here is an easy way to give your homemade  pizza extra oomph. I don't know why I hadn't thought of it. Served at a potluck luncheon, sadly, I don't know who made it, but thank you.  The garlic/butter bread makes it special. This is my version.

You'll need:

Frozen garlic bread sliced in single servings
Pizza sauce  (I like Ragu brand.)
Pizza cheese: Mozzarella, Provolone, Parmesan, (your choice)
Pepperoni (I used reduced fat)
Other toppings are optional such as black olives, mushrooms, green onions, ham, sausage, etc

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.  Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper and assemble your individual pizzas.  Bake for 8 or so minutes to make certain the frozen garlic bread is heated through and the cheese is melted. Figure at least two pieces per serving.

Enjoy,

Jane Marie

January 22, 2020

Always Remember This plus The Goodbye Lie Diaries - Breelan

 Life is about smiles. 

Those you give,
Those you get,
And those you create.
                                                                                              
                                                                                                - David C. Pugh


     An acquaintance of mine mentioned how his father often said the above quotation.  Because it's so simply wonderful, I want to share it with you. - Jane Marie  

***************
The Goodbye Lie Diaries 
Late 1800s
Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida

Breelan Dunnigan
Breelan Dunnigan writes:  I must agree, Jane Marie.  Mr. Pugh's words are simple, yet very instructive. Smiling is the answer to so many things.  When one is happy, you smile. That comes naturally. When you need to be brave, smile, if you can, so you appear to have courage.  When you need to endure a difficulty or hardship, for example Aunt Noreen and her acid tongue, smile.  A clever verbal jab works but momentarily with her so the best thing, according to my mama, Miss Ella, is to smile and nod.  I am reminded though that my father, is forever telling me to be cautious with my smiles in public.  I am not to direct them toward gentlemen I have yet to meet for fear they might get the wrong idea.  Oh, how Michael Dunnigan can be so overly protective.  Then again, I imagine most fathers are, in your time as well as mine.  Some things are cast in stone and always will be. 

Goodbye Lie Series
E-book and Paperback here

VICTORIAN SOUTHERN FICTION:
Oh, the LURE, the LOVE, the LEGEND... of The Goodbye Lie historical mystery-romance series, set on Victorian Amelia Island, Florida, in the late 1800s, "...where
Little House on the Prairie meets Gone With The Wind ...

January 4, 2020

Instant Hot Pan Carrier

     Once in a while, a brilliant idea overtakes me. Here is one. (Of course, there are degrees of brilliance) We found it necessary to take hot food a few blocks from the house because there would be insufficient room to reheat everything in our friend's oven. I had baked a fresh-from-the-oven pie, but what was the best way to transport it from our place to her dessert table?  Ding, ding, ding! Mayhap a frying pan?  And it worked! I was able to carry the pie without burning my hands and the frying pan caught any berry juice drips.  You're welcome!


December 20, 2019

2019 Annual Letter

Hello to all our fine and semi-fine friends out there,

     Yes, it’s time for our annual Gracious Jane Marie newsletter, where we dispense the always elegant and dignified events of our past year. We thought we might highlight some random conversations for you. Let us begin. 

Daughter to Mother first thing Thanksgiving morning as they prepared what was a delightfully delicious meal:  Where is that 2-cup glass measuring cup of yours?
Mother to Daughter:  Found it.  Your father’s teeth are floating in it.

Mother-in-Law to Son-in-Law:  Did you sleep well?
Son-in-Law to Mother-in-Law:  Yes, ma’am, except for the cat viciously guarding the front bathroom in the middle of the night, making me have to pee outside, all was well. But our visit here isn’t over yet.

Uncle Tree Bark:  Nothing better than an outdoor wee.  It’s good for the soul.

Uncle Crumb:  Keep them bulletins coming

Granddaughter:  Ooh!  What is that noise?
Grandmother:  That’s the sound of the cat vomiting.  Remember House Rule #27 which clearly states the following:  He who hears it, finds it or steps in it, must clean it up. 

Mother to Father:  Did you eat the last of the Cool Whip?  I was saving that.
Father: For what?  There was only enough to cover a gnat’s kneecap. Besides, the dog needed a new water bowl because he chewed that hold in the old one. So, there you go.  Thank you very much.

Brother at breakfast:  Where’s the toaster?
Sister:   We’ll be serving pop tarts from the floor.  If you’d ever lift a finger to help in the kitchen, you’d know we ran out of counter space.
Brother: Hey, I took the trash out last Christmas, so I don’t wanna hear it.

Grandmother:  Well, when I was in first grade, the little boy next door used to eat worms.  I thought that was a bit strange back then.
Granddaughter to Grandmother:  That’s still strange, Gramma.  
Mother: Aunt Flags used to eat dog biscuits, but only when they were buy one, get one free.  She didn’t want to deprive her animals, so she had her own box.
Aunt Flags: Yes, my preference was the Milkbone brand.
Son: Sister’s boyfriend in third grade licked rocks.  I saw him.
Father: That was then. Your sister broke up with him. I pride myself on the good  sense my children inherited from me.  Now, please pass the horseradish and Tabasco.  Badly burning my tongue and sinuses is all part of my newly devised diet plan.

Mother to Daughter: Please help hold the dog while I clean his fur. I don't know what he ate, but it upset his tum-tum and he has some stinky on him.
Daughter to Mother: No way!  I don't want to get that nasty stuff on my shirt. 
Mother to Daughter: Well then, would you at least take your freshly washed white comforter we got you, you spoiled small child, and put it in the dryer?
Daughter to Mother: Oh, alright. MOM!!!! My comforter is ruined. It's pink!  And there's Brother's red sweatshirt in the bottom of the washer!  He did that on purpose.
Mother to Daughter:  I don't know that he's bright enough to realize the red shirt would bleed.  He just wanted to wash his new shirt, same as you did your new comforter. You know that thing about what goes around, ...? Enjoy your new pink comforter.  Love you, honey.

And that's just a small sample of what went on at our house this past year.


Discovered the morning after our family reunion
We hope your year was as exhilarating as ours!

Much love and caring from Gracious Jane Marie and her Characters and Critters on Amelia Island, Florida (then, now and the time to come)

December 17, 2019

Gingersnaps Like Mom and Miss Ella Used to Make

Each year, Kathy Frazier, my friend and contributing baker to our blog, makes  these classically perfect
Gingersnap Cookies.  They have been in her family for years.  Thank you, Kathy, for sharing with us all! - JMM

You'll need:

1 1/2 cups Crisco
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1/2 cup unsulphured molasses

Sift together:

4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons cloves
2 teaspoons ginger

     Cream shortening and sugar. Beat in eggs. Add molasses and dry ingredients. Use teaspoon, take up enough to make 1 inch balls. Roll lightly between hands, roll in sugar. Place on cookie sheet. Bake 15 to 18 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool on rack. Makes 7 - 8 dozen.

A couple of notes:
I sometimes use half butter Crisco and half plain Crisco to total the 1 1/2 cups of Crisco - seems to add a little 'depth' to the flavor. In addition, I used to grease the cookie sheets, but have found that it is not necessary - they seem to slide off just fine when done. As far as baking times, I wait until the tops "crack" and then bake another couple of minutes - more or less. It's really just a trial and error thing and also how you prefer the cookie to be. I generally get about 110 cookies out of this one recipe.

Enjoy!

Kathy
The Goodbye Lie Diaries:

Late 1800s
Fernandina, Florida

Miss Ella writes:  That recipe of yours is so similar to my gingersnaps, I may
Ella Dunnigan*
round up the ingredients and make a batch or two tomorrow.  With my bunch, they will be gone in short order.  Good thing I have my tin shamrock-shaped cookie jar.  They can't lift the lid without it making a little ding sound.  That helps me keep track of who is consuming how many.  Thank you, Miss Kathy, for reminding me about these delights.  


*Ella Dunnigan is the matriarch of the family in the historical romance Amelia Island Goodbye Lie series. She is responsible for the care and forever feeding of not only her family in north Florida, but the passengers on the Aqua Verde Passenger Line ships featured in the novels.  Set in the late 1800s, this series will lure your spirit back to a time where love becomes legend. E-books and paperbacks available here.  

December 12, 2019

Two Ingredient Muffins

     A box of spice cake mix and a can of pure pumpkin, mixed well and baked at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes, is yummo! Who knew? I saw this two ingredient recipe posted by my friend Brenda on Facebook and, of course, had to try it.  Now I made mini-muffies, as we like to call them (baked for only 12 minutes). In about half the batter, I added a bit of well drained crushed pineapple.  They turned out fine with the added flavor and texture and I served them for breakfast, lunch and dinner dessert. The truth is that not many were left by dinner.  As I write this, I’m thinking a bit of softened cream cheese would be a great topping to go along with the spice cake.
     I haven’t tried these other combinations I found online, but they sound wonderful and so easy and quick. How about chocolate cake mix and 2 cups plain Greek yogurt, or lemon or orange cake mix and 1 ½ cup diet 7-up, or lemon or orange cake mix and one undrained 15 ounce can of Mandarin oranges, blended until semi-smooth for added texture, or angel food cake with one can of either apple, blueberry or cherry pie filling, blended till nearly smooth or yellow cake mix and 4 ripe bananas, mashed?   All the individual ingredients are good, so together, how can you go wrong?  Okay, if  you can’t stand it and want to goose up the recipe a smidge, maybe add some chocolate or butter scotch chips or crushed nuts or drained cherries sliced in half or raisins or craisins. The word or means choices! Once cool, top with Cool Whip and boom!  Store in the fridge. Fun and done! 

     P.S.  When making regular sized muffins, use muffin papers and lightly cover with non-stick spray.  If making a cake, treat the pan with non-stick spray, too, and be sure and follow the instructions on the box. Do not add any other ingredients like eggs or oil as listed on the back.  Remember, this is for Two Ingredient recipes. Heck, you might have a cake mix and pie filling in the pantry to try out for tonight! 

Happy Baking!    

November 25, 2019

A Song to Count Your Blessings

    In this special season of giving thanks for all we have, I want to share one of my favorite songs, Count Your Blessings, by Bing Crosby, from 1954's White Christmas

Happy Thanksgiving!

Don't Hate Me Because ... Plus The Goodbye Lie Diaries - Miss Ella


The time is now.
Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island, Florida

Jane Marie writes:  Through no fault of my own, the azaleas are in bloom again here in Florida.  Please don't be mad, if you are wearing a woolen parka over four layers of shirts and sweaters.  Perhaps the image of these pretty, perky azaleas will brighten your day.  Perhaps not.  (I have noticed how teasing is much more fun for the teaser.)



The Goodbye Lie Diaries
Circa Late 1800s
Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida
*Miss Ella Dunnigan

Miss Ella writes:  Now really, Jane Marie.  While those photographs are lovely, you showing them to those in parts of the world which do not have such balmy weather as ours, is less than gracious.  I'm sorry to treat you as a child, but you should know better.  Always be kind - or folks might think you're related to Aunt Noreen.  You are, of course, but I see no need in advertising that fact. Do you?   

*Miss Ella Dunnigan in The Goodbye Lie historical romance series is the ever-wise matriarch of the Irish American family of four grown or soon to be grown children, two grandmothers, one kin and the other, well, she might as well be kin, the often snarling Aunt Noreen and a husband, Michael.  Family is just the beginning ...

November 12, 2019

Zentangle for All!

     I recently took a Zentangle* class at our Island Art Association Gallery located at 18 N. 2nd St, Fernandina Beach on Amelia Island, Florida. (904 261-7020)  Local artists share their talents and supplies with anyone interested in the different art forms they teach.  Since I had never heard of Zentangle, I googled it and it looked interesting.  Little did I know how simple it is to do.
     Meant to be a relaxation exercise, my decorative pumpkin is the result. I've taken pictures from different angles to show it off. :-) There are particular patterns to copy, and/or you can create your own.  A fine tipped permanent ink black Sharpie marker and, in this case, a foam pumpkin, from a craft store, with a solid plastic covering, works perfectly.  Whatever you decorate, make certain it is a nonporous surface or else the ink might bleed, causing uneven lines.  You can use a larger tipped black Sharpie to fill in any solid black areas you desire.  The thicker tip will fill in faster and you won't dull your fine point pen. 
     I asked what else can be decorated.  The instructor showed a birthday card with a Zentangle cake on the the front.  She also mentioned she had decorated the collar and cuffs of a long sleeve white blouse using a fabric pen.  I can see it now, coupled with a black sweater.  Very fetching.
     To find other objects on which to draw, I went to my kitchen cupboard and tried writing on the bottom of a coffee mug and mason jar.  Then I rubbed where I'd drawn and it didn't smear.  So I went to the dollar store, got a couple of plain white ceramic mugs, a square ceramic dinner plate and an easel to display the finished product.  Oh, and some plain white ornaments.  Who says you can't use fine point colored markers, too?  
     The next time granddaughter Ava visits, we'll be Zentangling!  She's excited to give it a try because it's perfect for all ages! In fact, it would be a fun thing to do as a family affair over the holidays.  Everybody can decorate his or her own mug!  Be sure and sign and date it, too!


*The Zentangle®Method is an easy-to-learn, relaxing and fun way to create beautiful images by drawing structured patterns.  It was created by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.  "Zentangle" is a registered trademark of Zentangle, Inc.  Learn more at zentangle.com. 

November 5, 2019

Meet Bagatha

     My companion at every book signing, Bagatha is  hardworking, attractive  and always at the ready 
when I need her assistance.  Who is this creature with the most unusual name?  It is my 12 inch tall, give or take, doll who wears a white cotton cap and colorful floral patterned dress.  After a busy day, her full skirts are slender. Why? Because inside those skirts she holds our bags by which we can offer free gift wrapping to any who want to protect their Goodbye Lie series novels from the elements.  By free gift wrapping, we mean those plastic bags meant for recycling.  Try though we might to always take our own cloth totes to the stores, we still end up with the plastic bags. Folks always chuckle over this complimentary bonus.  You know me, chuckling is almost as good as guffawing.
     When trying to think of a name for the dolly, I asked my granddaughter, Ava, for her suggestions. With nary a blink, Ava replied "Bagatha." Perfect and clever!                                                                Please join us and our fictional Dunnigan family characters in Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida in the Goodbye Lie novels, set in the late 1880s.  Let them create long lasting memories for you. They certainly have for me.                 
                                        -jmm                 
      

October 29, 2019

Feet Loaf Anybody? Plus Peeper’s Goodbye Lie Diaries

lean beef and onions prior to baking
  Just in time for Halloween, try your hand at feet loaf!  Upon seeing these, some have responded with ewwwww!  Others have called them adorable.  While I do not understand such high praise, I willing admit I was taken by the concept when first I heard talk of this unusual entree on the radio.  Naturally, I had to google the image.  See the pictures of my efforts. 
baked feet loaf
You'll need: 
Your favorite meatloaf recipe (I used two pounds of lean ground beef shaped into two giant ugly feet.)
Sliced onions and chips for ankle bones and toe nails
Ketchup for blood around the bones.  

I baked my feet at 350 degrees for a good hour in a large 9" x 13" glass cake pan covered with foil for easy clean up.  The last ten minutes, loosely cover the feet with foil so they don't get too brown. Dribble with extra ketchup when done. 

     The most important thing is to have the camera ready to catch the shocked faces of your loved ones when you serve them these disgusting-looking feet for Halloween din-din!  Have fun! 


The Goodbye Lie Diaries
Late 1880s
Fernandina on Amelia Island, Florida

Grandmother Peeper writes:


 Dear Jane Marie,

     My, my, my!  This is something I will be  amakin' fer my kin.  The little ones will be fightin' over them toes.  Think I'll be invitin' Aunt Noreena over ta supper.  It will be hard fur me ta make my invite sound like a want her sittin' at our table, but the shock to her system will be so great, maybe she'll faint away.  That would be one Halloween worth rememberin'.  If only I kin keep from laughin' too soon in her face. 

Grandmother Peeper is a featured player in The Goodbye Lie series.  Her favorite target to tease and purposely irritate is the lady next door, Aunt Noreen. We all laugh along with Peeper.