4.5 (out of 5) Stars!


Uncle Neddy’s Funeral by L.M. Pampuro
Publisher: Self
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense
Length: Full (450 pgs)
Rated: 4.5 stars
Review by Snapdragon

Thank you to Long and Short Reviews for the 4.5/5 Stars for Uncle Neddy’s Funeral. You may read the entire review by clicking here.

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Back At The Harmony…

IMG_20170705_125444You may have noticed in Uncle Neddy’s Funeral thank you, I thank The Harmony Café for good food and vibe.  I really love this place.

 

I am sitting in the corner, drinking a house-made chai tea, and loving life. The owner shared a slice of carrot cheesecake with me. I am in heaven. Thin carrot cake crust topped with cinnamon-nutmeg flavored cheese. Just wow!

(Not that you need to know this but I also ate half of a house-made veggie burger on homemade bread with sweet potatoes. It is called the Ricardo…)  As summer continues I have fed my muse both physically with food and metaphorically with live music. This seems to be working as something new emerges.

Uncle Neddy is actually going on tour, virtual, yet a tour just the same. Starting next week, via this blog, you’ll have the opportunity to visit other blogs and register to win an Amazon gift card.

If you are in the central Connecticut area and a Chai tea fan, stop by The Harmony Café on Main Street in Middletown. You may see me banging on my laptop in the corner.

I will be the person with the half eaten sandwich and finished dessert.

 

 

 

 

 

Waffles & Weed Part 2

This is my original Waffles & Weed post that somehow got archived (read lost) and just appeared in my feed so I thought I’d share. Tomorrow I am hoping to share something bigger 🙂 Enjoy!

Okay. So, some of you are scratching your heads right now. No, this post is not about stoner munchie options.

This is about the happiest place on earth, at least to me. I took the day off to head up to the Green Mountains for a day of skiing. Gray, overcast sky. Snow flurries drifting down. Parking in a non-parking space because the rest were taken.

Around twenty-eight degrees at the base.

To me, an almost perfect ski day. There is something magical about spending time with Mother Nature. Yesterday I hiked with a friend up to a ridge overlooking I-91. In the distance clouds reflected on a body of water which sat in the middle of two hills.

I slid up the trail of rock and mud just to get a glimpse, before we glided down with hopes of not wrecking a knee or twisting an ankle. There is a quietness to this experience.

Today was different.

The purr of the ski lift, my hubby by my side, we shivered as the wind cut through the snow-covered trees. The top was fogged in yet about a third of the way down one could see across the valley. Ski trails gleamed off neighboring mountains.

Today required much more concentration to avoid the ice patches and unpredictable munchkins who fly passed with no fear. Yet this too is relaxing. The mountain air slaps my face. The snow almost burns any exposed skin.

Back in my twenties, I would ski by myself with my walk man blasting a Grateful Dead bootleg or maybe a mixed tape with some John Hiatt and Cream. Today I hear music in my head. Slow Turning keeps popping in and out as I concentrate on not falling. (We witnessed over a half-dozen sled rides and conditions were decent. We hope none are serious injuries.) It doesn’t matter if I am going down a black diamond (too icy for those today) or a blue or green trail, my focus is the same.

We all need to find spaces that make us happy. Live music, mountain air, and dancing pretty much does it for me. So, what is yours?

(Now I know gentle reader, you are wondering where the weed and waffles come in to play. Yesterday the sweet smell drifted in the distance as we hiked. Today the same scent mixed with the waffle shack’s residue at the base of the mountain. I could go and stereotype here yet I just found it funny and think that it makes a great band name.  I would go see them!)

 

Observations In Church

First, please let me say, this is not a religious post.

When I was a child my mother would take me and my three siblings to mass each week. In church, she would instruct us to behave. Behaving meant that we were to sit quietly and follow the direction of the priest. When he directed the parish to stand, we stood. When he said kneel, we knelt. And of course, we he said pray, we bowed our heads and prayed.

This was our expected behavior.

Of course, my mother wasn’t beyond bribing us. One time, during silent prayer, one of my siblings asked, “Are we behaving enough to go to McDonalds?” adding in after the snickers of the parish, “now?”

Fast forward many years.  My husband, a middle school teacher, comes home from work and asked, “Did the Catholic church start allowing beverages during Mass?” I made some water and wine comment. “Because I was listening to some seventh graders today and this one girl told a story about being late to church because her mom stopped to get her a Frappuccino.” I shrugged.

“She didn’t get to drink it though because she spilled it in the pew.” I stared.

“Frappuccino in the pew?”

“Yeah – but she didn’t clean it up because, you know,” in his best teenage girl voice, “God forgives.”

I was stunned.

Fast forward to Christmas Mass a few weeks ago, a mother with two teenage daughters next to us sat on their phones prior to the start of the service. About fifteen minutes in, mom pulls out bottles of Gatorade and they sit and sip through a good part of the service.

Today three rows in front of me, a man in his 30’s drank a Monster, texted, and scrolled through Facebook while our minister spoke about the need for even for five minutes of silence during our hectic days.

I must ask, when did phones, and drinks in church become acceptable? Next thing you know, we will have wine bars in the back.

The human body can easily sustain itself for an hour, about the length of the religious services I am writing about, without food or beverage. The human mind should be able to rest for that length of time too.

The benefits of delayed gratification, especially with children, include learning patience and working for a reward. By not teaching this concept, getting what one wants immediately becomes a terrible habit that leads to a “me first” approach to life.

The day my brother spoke during silent prayer we may have still ended up at McDonald’s for dinner, although I can’t be certain. He broke proper decorum. And my mom isn’t a push over…then or now.

Missed Fortune

The best part of Chinese food for me is the fortune cookie, not eating it, just reading that little slip of paper inside. Since I have known my husband, he always opens his cookie and says, “Help! I am trapped inside a fortune cookie factory.” Cheesy, yet funny.

So last evening when I reached across my kitchen table, my stomach fluttered with anticipation. I pulled apart the cellophane wrapper only to have the cookie go flying through the air! My heart sank as it crash crunched on my kitchen floor at the same time my half Lab, half Beagle dive bombed on top.

The cookie didn’t have a chance. Neither did my fortune. The old girl is fast when it comes to food.

Fast forward twelve hours. I keep watching her butt so when the time comes, I’ll know what fate has instore for me. She has been fed, walked, and snacked so much this morning that if she was human she’d ask if she was dying.

Finally, the blessed moment arrived and sticking out of her pile, which we have to pick up anyway as to not upset the neighbors, is the small, telling piece of paper. I had plastic gloves ready. My eyes watered from the smell yet finally I could read the words of wisdom I have been waiting for.

Help! I am trapped inside a fortune cookie factory!