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The Halcyon Season 1 Episode 8 Review

  The season finale opens as the staff is happily decorating the hotel for its 50th anniversary celebration but tensions run deep beneath the festive facade. Toby can’t seem to memorize the con

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The Halcyon Episode 7 Review

  November of 1940 finds the Halcyon on the eve of its 50th anniversary celebration—and under the evil shadow of Lucian D’Abbeville. Our suspicions are confirmed—he’s selling information

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The Halcyon Episode 5 Review

  Brilliant writing, brought to life by fine acting, shines in the sixth episode of ITV’s new hotel drama. We’re now in October of 1940 and we’re focused on the nighttime exploits of the in

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Coming To Rosemont is Now Available on Audible

  Coming To Rosemont is now available on Audible! Narrated by Dina Pearlman, the audiobook allows you to listen to your books wherever you are with their free app. Even if you switch devices, you

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The Halcyon Episode 4 Review

  It’s now August of 1940 and Americans are leaving London—and the Halcyon—in droves. German propaganda leaflets are being dropped along the coast and dogfights are taking place in the air

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The Halcyon Episode 3 Review

  It’s now June, 1940, and the war is progressing from bad to worse. France has asked for an armistice and wealthy French aristocrats are leaving in droves, seeking refuge in the hotel. One par

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The Halcyon Episode 2 Review

  It’s May of 1940 and the skies above London are full of RAF planes as ITV’s new hotel drama The Halcyon continues. The “phony war” rapidly becomes real when the Dutch surrender and Germ

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The Halcyon Episode 1 Review

  With Downton Abbey in the rear view mirror and the second season of The Crown in the distant future, we now have ITV’s The Halcyon to fill the void. And does it ever! The Halcyon is a swanky

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The House is Ready for a Christmas Party

We’re hosting our annual Christmas party, and the house is all ready. Come take a look!

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Holiday Home Tour

I love Christmas! My husband and I really enjoy decorating our home for the holidays, and we even take time off from work to get it all done. I’ve put together some videos of some different room

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‘The Crown’ review: Perfect TV for period drama fans missing ‘Downton Abbey’

For all Downton Abbey fans who are still feeling bereft: take comfort – The Crown is now on Netflix. Ten sumptuous episodes that provide an intimate look at the early years of the reign of Queen Eli

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Make Preparing a Big Dinner a Breeze

I’m a decent cook but my real super power is organization. My goal is to limit the work of a traditional holiday meal to one day–and not work myself to the bone preparing dinner on that da

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My Fall Vacation to North Carolina

My husband and I took a long-overdue vacation in October, spending a week in beautiful North Carolina. We arrived the week after Hurricane Matthew and were in the western part of the state, so missed

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Big News — Amazon is Showing Indie’s the Love

Why do I love being indie published? During the month of October, Amazon is celebrating great writing self-published via Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace. The celebration includes a dedicated

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Rosemont, Downton Abbey–Fun Interview with Patricia Sands

  I had such fun being interviewed by fellow author Patricia Sands. Patricia is a writer, photographer and traveler who writes wonderful women’s fiction.  You can read all of my interview

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Drawing Close Quote of the Week 6

  Drawing Close Quote Drawing Close is now available for sale on Amazon

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Drawing Close Week 5 Quote

  Drawing Close Quote Less than 1 week until the release of Drawing Close!  We are so excited to share it with you. Who is getting married?   More details will follow!

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Drawing Close Week 4 Quote

  Drawing Close Quote Less than 2 weeks until the release of Drawing Close, book 4 in the Rosemont series.  What do you think this quote refers to? Who is having this conversation? More details

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Drawing Close Week 3 Quote

  Drawing Close Quote Just a few more weeks until the release of Drawing Close, book 4 in the Rosemont series. What will happen next for Mayor Maggie Martin? Is Frank Haynes really as bad as he s

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Drawing Close Week 2 Quote

  Drawing Close Quote We are one week closer to the release of Drawing Close, book 4 in the Rosemont series. On August 1st, Drawing Close will be released on Amazon. You will be able to purchase

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Drawing Close Week 1 Quote

  Drawing Close Quote Each week from now until the August 1st release of Drawing Close, we will be posting weekly quotes from the book. I hope that you are as excited to read Drawing Close as I a

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 6 Review

  Soldiers search the farm for the deserter. Steph discovers that Sarah is harboring him at the vicarage. Sarah tells her that she’s been guided by what Adam would do. “Give the boy time to r

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 5 Review

  It’s now late August, 1940, and bombs light up the night sky on the horizon. Steph and Little Stan are struggling to bring in the harvest. The hired laborers desert in the middle of the night

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 4 Review

  Teresa Fenchurch’s innocent dance with the Wing Commander is taking her in an unexpected direction. He’s smitten with her and has invited her to an outing in the country. Teresa is weary of

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 3 Review

    This week we find ourselves in Great Paxford as the Battle of Britain begins. Stanley Farrow teaches his son how to run a bayonet through a German soldier. Steph isn’t pleased and is e

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 2 Review

    As June wears on, we learn that both Peter Barden and his accountant Helen were killed in the car crash. The war casts a pall on Helen’s burial, as an air raid sends everyone to the sh

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Home Fires Season 2 Episode 1 review

The second season of Home Fires delivers us back to Great Paxford in June, 1940 — one month before the beginning of the Battle of Britain. The skies are sunny and the people we’ve come to know an

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‘Downton Abbey’ : The last ever episode

Bravo, Mr. Fellowes—you got it all right! The episode opens on an idyllic summer afternoon. Henry Talbot is struggling to find his place at Downton. Charlie’s death has put him off racing. Lady Ed

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Finale Review

  The season finale opens with sunny skies over Downton but storm clouds brewing for both Edith and Mary. Lady Edith is struggling with the decision to tell Bertie Pelham the truth about Marigold

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 7 Review

  The episode opens as the family accepts Henry Talbot’s invitation to view him race at Brooklands. Lady Mary is attracted to him, but we see storm clouds begin to gather. The Dowager Countess

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 6 Review

  The Abbey is bustling with preparations for its first ever public tour. Lady Mary has decided – much to the consternation of Lord Grantham and Mr. Carson – to sell tickets to raise money fo

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 5 Review

  The fifth episode of Downton Abbey’s final season opens as Daisy helps Mr. Mason move into Yew Tree Farm. Mrs. Patmore supplies a hamper of refreshments and is soon serving tea to a grateful

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 4 Review

  The episode opens with Mr. Barrow enjoying his turn as butler while the Carsons are on their honeymoon. In typical Barrow fashion, he manages to irritate everyone at every turn, including Lord

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‘Downton Abbey’ teasers: 10 hints for Season 6 Episode 4

  The Carsons’ absence is keenly felt both above and below stairs, as Mr Barrow has stepped in as butler. Anna’s pregnancy hits a snag and Lady Mary’s eye is on more than the estate. Meanwh

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 3 Review

  Episode 3 revolves around the happy occasion of the wedding of Mrs. Hughes and Mr. Carson. Mrs. Patmore and Anna are horrified over Mrs. Hughes’ choice of her brown “day dress” as her wed

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‘Downton Abbey’ teasers: 10 hints for Season 6 Episode 3

  The Abbey is abuzz with wedding preparations, Denker gains the upper hand over Spratt, and Lady Edith shows us her mettle – but the biggest surprise comes at the very end of the episode. &nbs

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 2 Review

  Episode 2 begins with a glimpse of Mr. Mosley ironing the morning newspaper. At least economies haven’t reached to this level. Battle lines are drawn over the ownership of the local hospital,

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‘Downton Abbey’ teasers: 10 hints for Season 6 Episode 2

  An idea of Mary’s gives Anna new hope, while Mr Carson and Mrs Hughes can’t agree, and Edith is faced with her greatest fear. To whet your appetite, here are ten teasing lines of dialogue f

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Downton Abbey Season 6 Episode 1 Review

    The last ever season of Downton Abbey opens with Lord Grantham in hunting pink and Lady Mary scandalously astride rather than sidesaddle, preparing for the hunt. Barrow and Mosley are ha

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Our wish list for the final season of ‘Downton Abbey’

  Tom and Sybbie are off in America and Lady Mary is lonely and bored. She’s grown weary of discussing the building plans for Pips Corner with her father, along with the majority of the audienc

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Coming to Rosemont is one of BookBub’s 15 Favorites!

15 Books About Family Secrets That Will Keep You Guessing If you live for books that will keep you turning pages, stories about family secrets just might be your Kryptonite. Everyone has their own c

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Home Fires Season 1 Finale Review

The season finale finds us in May 1940 – in a world vastly different than the one when Home Fires started. The British expeditionary force has been driven back and France is expected to fall. The pr

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Home Fires Season 1 Episode 5 Review

Winter has Great Paxford in its icy grip. Steph has excelled at all of the new farming protocols and proudly signs her name to the required paperwork. Meanwhile, her devoted teacher receives the devas

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Maggie’s Easter Smokehouse Quartet Recipe

In Coming To Rosemont, Maggie and Susan prepare a delicious Easter Sunday brunch for their friends, including egg casserole and Smokehouse Quartet.  This Smokehouse Quartet recipe is easy and yummy!

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Home Fires Season 1 Episode 4 Review

The war intrudes on Great Paxford, as more iron gates are collected and rationing enforced. Miriam Brindsley’s “possible mistake filling out the form” comes to light when David doesn’t receive

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Home Fires Season 1 Episode 3 Review

It’s now November 1939. As the conflict rages in Europe, internal turmoil brews at home. Farming is a reserved occupation, so Stanley Farrow is exempt from compulsory service. He feels it is his dut

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Home Fires Season 1 Episode 2 Review

England has entered the war against Germany and the bucolic beauty of Great Paxford in the late summer sunshine is marred by troupes training in the streets. Read the rest of the review on Cultbox.

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Home Fires Season 1 Episode 1 Review

British television sensation Home Fires has crossed the pond and is now airing on Masterpiece Theater in the US. Based upon the novel Jambusters, Home Fires follows the lives of a group of women in ru

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Cocktail Conversation with Bette Lee Crosby

Southern author Bette Lee Crosby invited me to be her first guest on her new blog page “Cocktail Conversations.” I met Bette Lee when we both were listed on the BookBub Women’s Ficti

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Maggie’s Family Fruit Salad Recipe

       Maggie’s Family Fruit Salad Recipe 2 cans fruit cocktail in juice, well-drained 2 cans pineapple chunks, juice reserved 1 pint strawberries 3 bananas 2 small boxes sugar-free vanilla

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Rosemont Has a New Prelude

Rosemont now has a prelude composed just for the series! Check out Deborah Offenhauser’s brilliant Rosemont Prelude. It’s a free gift on http://www.watchfiremusic.com/album.php?dcid=243 a

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Title to the Third Book in the Rosemont Series is…

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Come down into our Hidden Basement

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Uncovering the Hidden Basement!

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 43

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 43   Jim Harrison turned at the sound of his name. A woman he recognized from the hospital’s billing department was approaching him. He

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 42

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 42   Jim Harrison slapped the New York Times angrily on the arm of his chair, waking his grandson. “Something wrong, gramps?” “No. Y

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 41

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 41   Blake slept fitfully that night and the next. He should be relieved that Jim Harrison was off the case, but the news had the opposite

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Tour my Son’s Bedroom

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Take a tour of my Guest House

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 40

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 40   Blake walked the streets of Charleston’s historic district, making a loop along Tradd, Meeting, South Battery, and Legare, familiar

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 39

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 39 Detective Grant’s stakeout on the next night was as quiet as the first. With no burglaries for almost a month, his task force was losing s

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 38

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 38 Blake made careful note of the cameras mounted along the fourteen-foot ceiling of the first floor rooms in the Calhoun Mansion. He was ponde

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Tour my Daughter’s Bedroom

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 37

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 37   Blake positioned himself along the outside of the tour group, bringing up the rear. His head spun with the magnitude of valuable art

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 36

Silver and Scotch  Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 36   Blake waited patiently for the guided tour of the Calhoun Mansion to begin. The mansion was the largest private residence in Charle

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 35

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 35   Detective Grant had an uneventful night. No burglaries had taken place in Savannah that Wednesday night. He stared at his reflection

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Tour the Master Bedroom

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 34

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 34   Detective Dewey Grant introduced Jim Harrison to the officers seated at the conference table on a Wednesday afternoon. “This is our

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 33

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 33   Jim Harrison reclined his seat back for the flight to Savannah and turned to stare at the white nothingness of the clouds outside the

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 32

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 32   Blake presented the counterfeit ID to the clerk of the budget residence hotel. She kept one eye on the reality show on the television

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Let’s Go Upstairs

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 31

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 31   Blake returned to Savannah and meticulously carried out three additional burglaries on his list over the next two months. Everything

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 30

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 30   They’d brought in his old nemesis, Detective James Harrison. The newspaper said he’d retired. Why in the hell couldn’t the man

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 29

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 29   Blake took his copy of the New York Times into the bar at the Waldorf Astoria and found a spot at a secluded table. Although it was o

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Party Time

We’re getting ready for our annual holiday party. Come take a peek before the guests arrive! Subscribe, Share, and stay tuned for more videos, Barb

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 28

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 28 Detective Grant emailed Harrison a zipped file with the complete police report from the crime scene and the information they’d extracted f

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 27

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 27   Jim Harrison rolled to the side of the bed and answered the phone before it completed the first set of rings. He never knew when his

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 26

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 26   Blake checked his watch. He’d been in the house for almost thirty minutes. It was time to be on his way. He turned to the opening,

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Taking A Tour

Take a tour of my library at Christmas. If you are a miniaturist, you won’t want to miss my collection of miniature door, windows, and fireplaces–all dressed for Christmas. Subscribe, Shar

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Wish List for Downton Abbey Season 6

  ITV announced last month that Season 6 of Downton Abbey will be the show’s final season. With the last ever episode due to air on Christmas Day, following eight episodes this autumn, we had a

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 25

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 25   Blake parked the black Camry in deep shade along Jefferson, at York. He walked slowly down York, toward his prey. He circled the squa

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 24

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 24   Blake checked the contents of his duffle bag one last time: screwdrivers; wire cutters; carpet knife; chisel; nail pullers; cotton ni

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 23

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 23   Jim Harrison walked the route through the manufacturing buildings, posting the required notations on the check sheet. His mind wasn

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Easter In The Kitchen

We’ve got a little bit of Easter in the kitchen! Do you decorate for all the holidays?

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 22

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 22   Blake departed the Savannah terminal and headed for the taxi stand. He waited patiently in the sun, allowing the warmth to drive out

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 21

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 21   Blake remembered the location of the shop accurately. It was down a long hallway that ran perpendicular to 47th Street, in a building

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 20

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 20   Blake purchased a suitcase at Wal-Mart and checked out of the budget motel. It was past time to move along. When he returned, he’d

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Join Me For Hors D’oeuvres

The candles are lit in the library and we’re waiting for the guests to arrive. Come on in!   Subscribe, Share, and stay tuned for more videos, Barb

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 19

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 19   Blake spent the next ten days painting molding, trim, and baseboards. Despite his lack of experience, he had a steady hand and was ve

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 18

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 18   Blake worked on the pergola, all the while surveying the windows and entrances to the house. He figured out the layout of the rooms a

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 17

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 17   Blake arrived at his intended location on Drayton shortly before seven that morning. He’d calculated that there were several homes

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Early Spring Dinner Party

Do you love planning and preparing for a dinner party as much as the party itself? Are you addicted to setting the table? Join me for a peek at the dining room as I get ready for an intimate dinner pa

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 16

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 16   Blake set the alarm on the bedside clock for four-thirty. He dressed quickly in his new Wal-Mart jeans and plain long-sleeved navy T-

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 15

Silver and Scotch  Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 15   Blake surveyed himself in the mirror, pleased with his reflection. He looked every bit the successful businessman he portrayed hims

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 14

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 14 Blake handed the registration clerk cash for a week’s stay and took the key to his room. He’d take his first hot shower in more than thr

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Barbara Hinske on Author Rise

Today I am on the AuthorRise blog. Stop by and read, leave a comment and tell me what you thing. The thing we love most at AuthorRise is connecting with authors. They’re why we exist! Talking Shop i

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Welcome To My Home!

Come in and begin the tour! It’s the Holidays, and the house is dressed for Christmas. Subscribe, Share, and tune in for more. See you next time, Barb

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 13

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 13   Blake decided to celebrate his good fortune by taking a tour of the Mercer House. He needed to get his juices going again. He donned

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 12

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 12   Blake abandoned his quest for food and turned south, walking all the way to Forsyth Park before he settled into a spot on a secluded

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Recipes and Tips from Big Yumm 3/5

  These are scrumptious, and so much better for you than french fried potatoes.  Plus when you have crunchy and lemony, it’s a fantastic combination.  This would go with just about anything,

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 11

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 11   Scotch Blake shoved the small wad of bills into the pocket of his prison-issue pants and stalked off. Working as a day laborer and sl

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Announcing — the Barbara Hinske YouTube channel!

As many of my readers know, the fictional stone manor home known as Rosemont, which is the cornerstone of my Rosemont series of novels, is based upon my own historic home. Rosemont is grander than my

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 10

  Silver and Scotch – Night 10 Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 10   Blake finished every morsel of his lunch and set off down Congress to Bull. He strolled along Bull, circling

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 9

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 9   The day was balmy and sunny, a complete departure from the weather he’d left not more than a week ago. It felt good to walk. An hour

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Fruit Scones Recipe 2/26

These are easy and delicious scones. Perfect for a cozy tea time on a blustery afternoon! Fruit Scones Ingredients 1/2 stick butter 2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tsp baking powder 1/2 tsp salt 1 oz fine

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 8

Silver and Scotch – Night 8 Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 8   Blake’s money ran out in Nashville. He got off the bus and joined the ranks of day laborers, unloading trucks at the

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 7

Silver and Scotch – Night 7 Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 7   Blake switched buses in Omaha, using his cash to get him as far into the South as he could. No one loved family silver

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 6

  Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 6   Blake rubbed his hand over his eyes as the bus pulled out of the station. He’d seen his mother anxiously searching the bus fo

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 5

  Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 5   Mrs. Emma Blake pulled her scarf closer to her neck and rocked back and forth on the wooden bench in the drafty bus station. Sh

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 4

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 4 Jeffrey Blake walked along the side of the road, headed to the bus station in the town. He stuck his thumb out but no one stopped for hitchhi

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 3

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 3 Jim Harrison pulled into his driveway and checked the clock on his dashboard. His grandson would be starting another chemo treatment in a few

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 2

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 2   Jeffrey Blake rolled up the sleeves of the standard issue jacket that the prison guard handed him. Short and slight, with a gymnast’

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Bedtime Story: Silver and Scotch – Night 1

Silver and Scotch Copyright 2015 by Barbara Hinske Night 1 Retired Detective James Harrison tossed the clipboard on the counter and sank into the desk chair. He rolled up to the bank of video monitors

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Christmas Special review

  This year’s feature-length festive special is brimming with the things we love: sumptuous dinner parties, carols by the Christmas tree in the great hall, and happily-resolved plot lines. Not

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 22

  Once Upon a Time… Sven’s heart leapt to his throat. Could it be his Kiara? Not likely, he told himself; Kiara was a common name in Sweden. But the magic book—his magic book—led him to t

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 21

Once Upon a Time… Sven brought the letter to the register and ripped it open. He was extracting the contents when the door to his shop opened and a woman herded two middle-school-aged boys into the

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 20

  Once Upon a Time… Anna Morris was a slight, shy ten-year-old girl with crooked teeth and thick glasses. She ducked into the shop one day after school. Sven was surprised that she was alone—

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 19

  Once Upon a Time… Sven re-opened The Enchanted Bookshop in a corner location just three blocks from the original store and directly across from the site of the now-defunct big box store that

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 18

  Once Upon a Time… Sven groaned and turned toward the door to his room. “Are you all right, dear?” he heard Mrs. Harrison ask. “It’s past noon.” “Yes. Thank you. I stayed up all ni

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 17

  Once Upon a Time… Sven’s hands shook as he sank back against the headboard and placed the Uppsala phone book on the bed in front of him. He double-checked—his name was definitely written

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 16

  Once Upon a Time… Sven knew his grandfather had served in the European theater in WWII. What he didn’t know—and what an aging parcel of letters proved—was that his grandfather had falle

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 15

  Once Upon a Time… Sven slung the emails into the wastebasket by his bed. Whatever had happened to her, he would never find out. He didn’t even know her last name. Searching for a girl named

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 14

  Once Upon a Time… Sven settled into the modest room in Mrs. Harrison’s home that was now his. The light from the north-facing window was good and the hand-stitched quilt on the bed was invi

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 13

  Once Upon a Time… Sven held her gaze and nodded slowly. “His inventory contains fourteen boxes marked ‘magic books’. But I’m not so sure.” “The only way to find out is to reopen t

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 12

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 12   Once Upon a Time… “What did you do with it?” Sven asked. “I took it up to the register, but your grandfather wouldn’t let me pay

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 11

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 11 Once Upon a Time… Sven stopped, his cup halfway to his mouth, and returned the cup to its saucer. “So you know the story about the magic book

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 10

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 10 Once Upon a Time… Mrs. Harrison peered over her half-moon spectacles at the anxious young man sitting across from her at her kitchen table. She

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 9

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 9 Once Upon a Time… Sven whistled as he loaded ten boxes of rare books into the trunk of his rental car. One was a beautiful leather volume, beari

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 8

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 8 Once Upon a Time… Sven opened the cover on the next book in the stack. Again, no name had been written inside. He quickly worked through the res

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5’s best moments

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 7

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 6

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 6 Once Upon a Time… Now that he was grown up, Sven assumed that his grandfather had somehow managed to slip the person’s name into the book in t

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 5

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 5 Once Upon a Time… Sven slowly lowered the clipboard and leaned back against a stack of boxes. As a child, he’d believed in the magic books. He

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 finale review

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 4

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 4   Once Upon a Time… Sven was waiting the next morning when the clerk arrived to open the gates at the storage facility. He wanted to get hi

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 3

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 3 Once Upon a Time… Sven coughed and cleared his throat. He remembered that his grandfather believed in magic books. And that Sven’s parents mad

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 2

Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 2 Once Upon a Time… Sven raked his fingers through his hair and stooped to pick up the key and map. A shaky hand had drawn a circle around an inte

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 7 review

‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 7 review Lady Edith’s disappearance is front and centre this episode. Rosamund and the Dowager Countess decide they must tell Cora, but Mrs. Drew beats them to i

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Bedtime Story: The Enchanted Bookshop – Night 1

Some of the best words in the English language are “Once Upon A Time.” My dad told me a bedtime story every night of my childhood, and I’ve grown up to be a storyteller, too. So get your jam

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 6 review

‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 6 review Here’s my review of Episode 6 of the current season (5) of Downton Abbey — hot off the presses. I’ve finished watching the season —

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 5 review

I am enjoying this season so much. Stop by and see my review. Episode 5 opens as Aunt Rosamund arrives to solve Lady Edith’s predicament with “the farmer’s child.” As it happens, she only make

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 4 review

‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 4 review We are at the halfway point in the 5th season. Relationships are strained and tension runs high at Downton as we reach the halfway point of the fifth seas

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 3 review

‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 3 review The third episode of Downton Abbey’s new season opens with Lord Gillingham scrambling to his room as the hotel maid delivers Lady Mary’s breakfast tra

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‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 2 review

‘Downton Abbey’ Season 5 Episode 2 review The second episode of Downton Abbey’s new season finds Mr. Carson and Lord Grantham at odds over the site of the WWI memorial: the cricket pitch at Down

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Downton Abbey Season 5 won’t Disappoint: Episode 1 Review

Downton Abbey is back and the opening episode of the period drama’s fifth season does not disappoint, placing numerous long-running storylines and a plethora of new subplots into the chute and setti

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 37

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 37   Rachel locked the door to her classroom. She was more than ready for the summer hiatus. What an odd year it had been. She’d received

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 36

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 36   “So I wasn’t paranoid? The taxi driver; the man on the bench at the train station the night I left Vienna?” Col. Sullivan nodded.

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 35

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 35   Col. Sullivan regarded her thoughtfully. “I believe I do. I was working on the inside, to protect Kosof. After they rem

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 34

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 34   Rachel’s heart hammered in her chest and she lunged for the wall as her knees buckled. Col. Sullivan stepped forward to

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 33

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 33   The black Suburban with the darkly-tinted windows picked her up within the hour. Col. Sullivan told her the driver would

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 32

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 32   Rachel ordered a glass of wine when the attendant came to take her beverage order. She drank it in a series of unladylike

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 31

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 31   Rachel quickly exited the bank, ignoring the curious stares from the tellers as her suitcase clattered behind her. She ha

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 30

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 30   Rachel examined the cipher, turning it over in her hand, holding it directly under the lamp on the small table in the roo

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 29

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 29   Rachel took a taxi the short distance to Britsch & Cie and was the first customer when the doors were unlocked prompt

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 28

    The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 28   Rachel froze, attempting to collect her thoughts. She started when the ticket agent tapped her on the shoulder from behin

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 27

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 27   Rachel found a seat in the train station, close to the ticket booth, directly under a lamp. She wouldn’t be able to sleep, so

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 26

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 26   “There won’t be many trains leaving tonight,” the driver said, eyeing her in the rear view mirror. Rachel shrugged and tur

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 25

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 25   Rachel wasn’t able to conceal her alarm at his statement that the man was looking for her. The taxi driver assured her that he hadn

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 24

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 24   Rachel was scrolling through the results of her google search of Vladimir Kosof when her hostess knocked. She quickly shut her c

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 23

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 23   Rachel firmly shut the door and was halfway across the room when she turned and retraced her steps to lock it. The woman seemed innocen

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 22

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 22   True to his word, the taxi driver deposited Rachel at the charming old-world home of his sister, an energetic widow in her fifties with

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 21

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 21   “Where to, miss?” the driver asked, eyeing her curiously in his rear view mirror. She didn’t know where to go—she only knew she

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 20

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 20   “Are you all right, miss?” the clerk asked as Rachel grasped the counter to steady herself. She hadn’t called him—what w

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Time for a Sequel to the 1998 film You’ve Got Mail?

Did you find ‘The Shop Around the Corner’—the independent bookstore in the 1998 film You’ve Got Mail—every bit charming as its on-screen owner, played by Meg Ryan? I sure did! And I hated To

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 19

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 19   Rachel pressed the elevator button and rocked from foot to foot as she waited. She hadn’t had time to unpack, so gathering her

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 18

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 18   “Madam—we’re just finishing,” the clerk called as Rachel turned sharply on her heel and hurried to the entrance, leaning into t

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Rosemont Readers Pinterest Boards

  Do you love Pinterest with a passion?  Me too!  One of my readers started her own “My Rosemont” board and it got me thinking:  Wouldn’t it be fun to have some group boards?

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 17

The Night Train Copyright 2014, by Barbara Hinske Night 17   Rachel paused inside the entrance, allowing her eyes to adjust to the bright fluorescent lights after the dreary morning outside. She

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 16

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 16   Rachel lingered on the steps to the Police Directorate the next morning. One thing was certain; she would not go sightseeing with her f

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 15

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 15   Rachel’s stomach lurched and she turned quickly toward her car window, pretending to study a row of shops as they drove past. The las

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 14

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 14   He eased the car into the heavy rush-hour traffic. “Are you enjoying Vienna?” “I just arrived this morning, so I haven’t had th

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 13

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 13   Rachel hesitated. ‘Should she go with this man? Was he even the man from the train? The provost knew him; surely she would be

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 12

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 12   Rachel kept her eye on the man during the reception that followed their presentations, but couldn’t get close to him. They were both

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 11

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 11   Rachel swallowed hard as she realized that the provost was calling her name, inviting her to the podium. Her hands shook as she placed

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 10

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 10   Rachel inched forward to watch the man disappear into the crowd on the busy platform. He never turned to look back. She stepped

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 9

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 9   Rachel woke, stiff and sore, as the brakes squealed and the train slowed to a stop. Momentarily disoriented, the nightmarish memories of

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 8

  The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 8   After what seemed like an eternity, the man rose and strode out of the compartment. Rachel released the breath she had been holdi

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 7

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 7   Rachel held her breath. Although she couldn’t see him, she knew that another man remained in the compartment. She tasted bile and for

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 6

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 6   Rachel turned to the window; the approaching train was closing on them fast. She shoved the key into her pocket, snatched her purse, and

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I’ve been Tagged in a Blog Hop!!

Rita Ackerman, a writer and historical research specialist that I met when I was speaking at the Arizona Author Showcase at the Desert Foothills Library, tagged me in a Blog Hop. Fun idea – writers

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 5

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 5 Rachel retrieved her cell phone from her purse and cursed when she realized she had no service. Her attention was drawn to the window and a dis

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 4

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 4 ‘Surely this can’t be right,’ Rachel thought as she sank against the wall. ‘There has to be someone else here,’ and she knew that the

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 3

The Night Train Copyright 2014 by Barbara Hinske Night 3 Rachel carefully cradled the unconscious man on her lap, leaning over him to tug the compartment door open. Drawing as much breath as she could

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 2

Based upon reader input, I’ve decided to post these every Mon-Wed-Fri until the story is completed. There are 37 installments. And I’m going to post this coming Friday, July 4. Enjoy ̵

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Bedtime Story: The Night Train — Night 1

Some of the best words in the English language are “Once Upon A Time.” My dad told me a bedtime story every night of my childhood, and I’ve grown up to be a storyteller, too. So get

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Meet the Fabulous Five!

MEET THE FABULOUS FIVE! INTRODUCING five of the Bestsellers BookBub singled out as Women’s Fiction that works! Here is the story of the Gold family, an institution in the small Connecticut town of O

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Gorgeous George (Clooney, that is!) to get married at Downton Abbey???

Rumors are flying. Step aside Kim and Kanye. (Who on this planet isn’t sick of them, anyway?  The least elegant couple on earth. But I digress). Here’s the scoop:   George’s fiancé, Amal

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Menu for Downton Abbey Inspired Dinner

This week I made a presentation at a book club (I love doing this—one of my fav things to do). The ladies told me that they threw a Downton Abbey party for one of their meetings. Showed me photos—

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What’s new for Downton Abbey Season 5?? (Spoiler alert!)

I’ve been scouring the Internet this morning (avoiding yard work, if you must know), looking for hints of what we can expect in Season 5. Here’s what I’ve found:   Lady Rose (actress Lily J

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Sandra Bullock to Join Downton Abbey cast for Season 5?

Sandra Bullock to Join Downton Abbey cast for Season 5??? Yes, please!! Rumors are flying around the Internet. She reportedly loves the show, is looking for a home near its filming location, and pumpe

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The Star of Downton Abbey: Highclere Castle

I find every aspect of Downton Abbey irresistible: the costumes, the actors, the story line, the music, and — above all — the glorious setting of Highclere Castle, known to its legions of fans sim

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Cocktail Hour at The Abbey

There’s a lot of interest in hosting an authentic (well — as authentic as it can be without being held in Downton) DA-inspired dinner party. So let’s delve into the topic; really a

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Downton Abbey Inspired Dinner Party Anyone?

Throw a Downton Abbey-Inspired Dinner Party! To go along with the dinner party make sure you enter to win a Downton Abbey-Inspired Gift Basket here. Attend to these 12 steps and you’ll have a wi

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The Great Tapestry of Scotland Elevates Embroidery to Art

I so admire Alexander McCall Smith, author of the beloved No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency series. I admire his gently-drawn characters and his love affair with Botswana, which he so expertly conveys to

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La Passeggiata: Italy’s Evening Stroll

I’ve long been interested in neighborliness and recently read about the Italian custom of La Passeggiata: the Evening Stroll. Between 5 pm and 8 pm, Italians take to the streets to greet their frien

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Meet Mystery Author John J. Hohn

One of the remarkable joys of the internet is that it allows us to become friends with people all over the world; people we have an affinity with who we would never have encountered otherwise. I’ve

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Fictional Manor House Rosemont Inspires Little Free Library

We’ve done it! Or, I should say, my husband’s done it! Built an incredible Little Free Library inspired by Rosemont. I casually mentioned the idea to him one night when we were getting ready for b

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Little Free Libraries Exhance Neighborhoods

I am keenly interested in neighborliness. I was exploring the topic on twitter and came across an article in the Denver Post about the Little Free Library movement. My husband saw a news story about i

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Surprise Fresh Strawberry Pie Party!

I recently read about a beloved small-town diner in the South – now closed – that would throw up a billboard that read: “F.H.P.I.C. – You Know Where.“ People watched and waited for this bill

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I Love Lipstick!

The weather in Phoenix is starting to get warm (Phoenix definition – under 105 – hot doesn’t happen until 106). Remembering an unhappy incident with a lipstick left in my car’s console a bit t

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I Love Setting the Table!

I love everything about throwing any sort of dinner party; planning, invitations (old-fashioned–heavy-paper-stock-come–in-the-mail kind of invitations), shopping, cooking, hosting, and even clean-

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Planning a Vacation

Planning Isn’t planning a vacation delicious? I’m talking about the never-been-there-never-walked-those-streets kind of destination. All those thoughts of possibilities! I start with a trip to an

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Peeps — one of the joys of Spring!

Is there anything more irresistible, more compelling than a Peep? In any of its various forms or colors? Just looking at them, all snug in their tightly packed rows, makes me smile. An entire display

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What’s the Civility of Slow Walking People?

I’ve got a raging debate going on within my close circle of friends regarding the “civility” of a recent situation I was involved in. Who was being rude/inpatient/intolerant/thoughtless here? Th

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Downton Abbey — is Civility the Real Draw?

Ahhh – Downton Abbey is back and my weeks crescendo from Sunday night to Sunday night. Don’t we all love their world? Doesn’t it seem so much simpler than our own daily rounds? But to them, I’

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Filled Swedish Sponge Cake

Filled Swedish Sponge Cake This recipe is from Maggie’s mother. When she was small, she would help her mother with this traditional recipe. Its one saving grace is that it’s made three days ahead

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Black-and-White Brownies

Black-and-White Brownies Bottom Brownie Layer ¼ lb. Butter 1 C. Sugar 2 Eggs 2 squares melted Baking Chocolate ½ C. Flour ½ tsp. Vanilla Mix together. Beat with electric mixer until smooth and shin

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Always Easy, Always Ready Basic Pie Crust

  Always Easy, Always Ready Basic Pie Crust No need to be afraid of making a scratch crust.  You can keep this mix on hand in an airtight container in your pantry – no refrigeration required.

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Impromptu Ice Cream Social

Impromptu Ice Cream Social This one is really easy and economical, and will generate a lot of goodwill in your neighborhood. Invite your neighbors for an old-fashioned ice cream social on your front l

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Holiday Open House for 100+ Guests

                          Holiday Open House for 100+ guests Serving food – even hors d’oeuvres – to 100 or more can be very expe

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A Family New Year’s Eve

A Family New Year’s Eve Maggie credits her clever friend Martha with this genius idea. Maggie and Martha were co-homeroom mothers for their daughters’ first grade class and became fast friends. Ma

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Maggie’s Tried-and-True Entertaining Guide

Maggie’s Tried-and-True Entertaining Guide As we all know, Maggie completely with but. I did lots of entertaining as the wife of a small-college President. From intimate dinners with colleagues to l

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Savannah

Savannah We made the pretty drive through the low country to Savannah, Georgia, for the last two days of our vacation. Arriving during rush hour isn’t ideal and we were tired and cranky by the time

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Charleston

Charleston Charleston, South Carolina, is a city of remarkable beauty – both natural and man-made. My husband and I visited for five days in October. I’m the nosiest person on the planet, and neve

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Exploring

Exploring One of the great joys of being on vacation is being off schedule and – as much as possible these days of electronic leashes – off the “grid.” I’m incapable of having a lazy, do-not

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Arrival!

Arrival! After a long day on an airplane – and after getting lost because the Neverlost on the rental car never worked – is there a more welcome sight than your hotel? It’s such a huge relief to

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Planning a Vacation

Planning Isn’t planning a vacation delicious? I’m talking about the never-been-there-never-walked-those-streets kind of destination. All those thoughts of possibilities! I start with a trip to an

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Thoughts on Vacations

Thoughts on Vacations My husband and I took our first real vacation of any length recently. No visiting relatives, no business trips with a spouse tag-along, no moving a child into a college apartment

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