A Writer’s Garden–A Rose Garden Tour by Catherine Castle

Catherine Castle

Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing.

Today’s writer/gardener guest is, me–Catherine Castle.

 

A ROSE GARDEN TOUR

I found myself with an empty slot on this week’s garden blog, so I thought I’d fill in.

Readers often want to know if authors insert themselves into their books. I’ve noticed that there are a few things that always seem to slip themselves into my books. Flowers tend to be one of those things. That’s probably happens because I’m a gardener and I love flowers.

My sweet romantic comedy, A Groom for Mama, is no exception. At one point in the story, Allison, Jack, and Mama visit a rose garden. So I thought it would be fun to show you some pictures of the rose gardens I’ve…

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Wednesday Writers–Koush Hollow by Leigh Goff

Catherine Castle

Today’s Wednesday Writers guest is Leigh Goff. Leigh will be sharing an excerpt from her newest YA release Koush Hollow, a southern Gothic set in New Orleans with a mystery and an environmental twist. Welcome, Leigh!

Koush Hollow:
Where bayou magic abounds and all that glitters…is deadly.

After her father’s untimely death, Jenna Ashby moves to Koush Hollow, a bayou town outside of New Orleans, dreading life with her wealthy mother.

As the sixteen-year-old eco-warrior is introduced to the Diamonds & Pearls, her mother’s exclusive social club, she comes to the troubling realization that secrets are a way of life in Koush Hollow.

How do the Diamonds & Pearls look so young, where does their money come from, and why is life along the bayou disappearing?

As Jenna is drawn into their seductive world, her curiosity and concerns beg her to uncover the truth. However, in this town where mysticism…

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Tasty Tuesdays–Orzo Lemon Salad from Eris Field

Catherine Castle

from Eris Field

My husband was Turkish. As a young bride I learned to make many of his favorite dishes to both our delight. This is one that is perfect for a hot summer day. If you like Augolemono Soupa (Greek lemon chicken soup. Get the recipe here.) you will enjoy this salad. Make it a complete meal by adding chopped, cooked chicken breast and a bottle of crisp white wine.

Orzo Lemon Salad

1 cup orzo
½ cup onion, red, Vidalia, or scallions, chopped fine
⅓ cup green olives with pimento, sliced
½ cup roasted red peppers, sliced
4 hard-boiled eggs, coarsely chopped
½ lemon, juiced
3 tbsp. mayonnaise, or to taste
Lemon zest
Small mixture of lettuce leaves, torn into bitesize pieces

Bring eggs to boil in a covered pan and then turn off the heat when water boils. Let stand in pan with cover on for…

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Friday Feature Bird Watching via @EmmaJLane

C.D. Hersh

Friday Features’

Guest talks about

Nature and the Birds

by

Janis Lane

Photo courtesy of Ks Kyung Unsplash

Nature and the Birds. Nature fascinates me, but I confess I lived in Alaska for four years and never once thought to use my binocs on a perching bird. We were all into whales, moose, goats, eagles and such like. The big stuff. I weep thinking how I missed puffins. Right away I want to recommend a book whether you are new to the hobby or an old hand, “The Crossley Guide of Eastern Birds.” (or go to the library.) You’ll need to look for a similar copy for your area, i.e. Western. The pictures are exquisite. For ordinary daily bird identification, I use an Audubon Society Guide to Field…whatever nature interest you. These books are terrific Christmas or Birthday presents for any age. I keep one in my car and another…

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A Writer’s Garden–Through the Fuller Garden Gates with Linda Shenton Matchett

Catherine Castle

Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing. Today’s writer/gardener guest is Linda Shenton Matchett.

Linda will be taking us on a tour of Fuller Gardens.

Welcome, Linda!

The Fuller Garden House

I love flower gardens. There is nothing more that I enjoy than walking through a well-maintained, colorful garden. Unfortunately, despite coming from a long line of farmers and gardeners, genetics failed me, and I have a “brown thumb.” Even house plants tremble when they enter my home. Because of my lack of gardening skills, I live vicariously by visiting public and private botanical gardens.

Dalhia bed

Several years ago, I took a day trip with several members of my church to Fuller Gardens located in North Hampton, New Hampshire in the historic area known as Little…

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A Writer’s Garden–Making Garden Memories by Becky Van Vleet

Catherine Castle

Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing.

Today’s writer/gardener guest is Becky Van Vleet, a gardner who loves to create memories. Welcome, Becky!

There are so many aspects to my gardening that I love. The sweet fragrance of my flowers. The amazing fact that my perennials know when it’s time to pop their heads up each year. Working my hands in the rich dirt in my vegetable garden and sometimes feeling a worm. Harvesting my herbs and veggies every summer for my family to enjoy. In fact, I would have to say that working in my flower and vegetable gardens is very therapeutic for me. I reap the pleasures and joys of gardening as I also deal with destructive hail and drought. (Note hail covering!)

Every spring…

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Tasty Tuesdays– A Roast Lamb Loin Dinner from Eris Field

Love the recipes.

Catherine Castle

from Eris Field

My husband was Turkish and enjoyed it when I made meals from his mother’s recipes. This was one of his favorites, and mine too because it was easy and delicious. It’s also similar to one described in my latest book The Marital Bargain: Wife for Five Months.

ROAST LAMB LOIN

Photo courtesy of Akemy Mory Unsplash

Use your favorite recipe to roast lamb until done but still pink on the inside.

RAS el HANUT YOGURT

1 cup plain yogurt
1 tsp. Ras El Hanout*

Combine ingredients in a small bowl. Stir well. Keep refrigerated until you’re ready to serve.

Drizzle a small amount on the lamb at serving time.

*Ras el Hanout is a seasoning found in stores that sell Turkish or Arabic food. To make your own combine a small amount of coriander, allspice, fennel, black pepper, cumin, cinnamon, anise seed, cardamom, nutmeg, ginger…

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Musings from a Writer’s Brain–Five Truths from a Scaredy Cat by Deena Adams

Catherine Castle

Hi, I’m Deena, and I’m a scaredy-cat.

Now that I’ve let that cat out of the bag, (sorry, couldn’t resist J) I’ll explain. I’ve never been much of a risk-taker. I tend to play it safe and escape pain and broken bones—and a broken heart—any time I can.

As a new writer, I deal with fears like rejection, failure, inadequacy, being judged, and getting hurt on a regular basis. If I succumb to these fears, I’ll be paralyzed and unable to move forward in God’s calling on my life to write.

When I attended my first writer’s conference in May 2019, I fought against several of the aforementioned fears. What if I make a terrible first impression? What if I choke when someone asks me what I’m writing about? Is my hook and pitch catchy enough? Will a publisher or agent tell me I’m wasting my time?

These are just…

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A Writer’s Garden–Pandemic Gardening by Rachel Sharpe

Catherine Castle

Welcome to A Writer’s Garden where writers who are gardeners or just love gardens will be sharing their garden and flower stories, as well as a bit about their writing.

Today’s writer/gardener guest is Rachel Sharpe, talking about the upside of Coronavirus on her garden. Welcome, Rachel!

A global pandemic. The very phrase elicits anxiety, panic, stress. People are furloughed. Schools are closed. A once fast-paced world has been stopped in its tracks.

I don’t think anyone was prepared for what would happen or what may come next when the dreaded Coronavirus made its way to the United States. I am doing my best to keep a positive attitude, stay safe, and make lemonade out of lemons. If not for myself, for my children.

One of my father’s favorite sayings is “Look for the good.” In everything in life, there is some good, no matter how hard it may be…

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Tasty Tuesdays–Heavenly Honey Bun Cake from Sharon Ledwith

Catherine Castle

from Sharon Ledwith

Some recipes take me back to a time when life was simpler—a.k.a. living with my parents, eating their food, and not having to any pay bills or a mortgage. As the name suggests, this cake tastes exactly like the honey bun I used to buy during my high school days. Trust me, just one mouthful of this sugary bliss propels you back to those days where all your happy memories and good times of the past, still exist.

A warning to the wise: it’s quite a sweet cake and not for those who are watching their waistlines, so wait until after you’ve blown your New Year’s Resolutions to try this delish dish. I’ve found this is the perfect cake to serve during holidays, celebrations, or perhaps as an indulgent dessert at your monthly book club.

Heavenly Honey Bun Cake
1 package of yellow cake mix (432 g…

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