Friday, November 24, 2023


 Yesterday was Thanksgiving. It was "just" the 12 of us -- we Kendigs 11, and Kevin's mother.

A year ago Thanksgiving was humorous. I was frantically finishing a book at the time, and Kevin's mother, who usually brings multiple dishes, was in Texas visiting Kevin's sister.

Thanksgiving dinner rolled around and I lifted my head from my manuscript and realized we had turkey, mashed potatoes, and 3 pies. That was it. No one really cared, but it definitely was an odd Thanksgiving dinner.

This year, I was determined to do better. Kevin's mom is in Ohio, so that helped. Our middle girls made 3 pies. Kevin's mom came with 2 more pies and brownies. We had enough desserts.

And we had many other things: turkey and mashed potatoes and green beans and sweet potatoes and gravy, and cranberry salad and olives. Oh, and Kevin's mom brought cheese ball, to the delight of some of the children.

It was very yummy.

Lydia has been battling significant dietary issues and has lost a lot of weight. She is currently sitting at like 130 lbs which is Ok, but thinner than she likes. She is trying to gain weight but it is hard when you can't eat so many things.

However, we do live in a time and place where gluten free alternatives are an option. So she is figuring out things she can eat. She thought she had celiac, but now the doctors are saying no, it isn't that...

but it could definitely be a wheat intolerance.

She is figuring it out.

Now onto the other excitement of the Thanksgiving weekend; another book!

After Kevin retired from his Air Force job, he started studying marketing. He found a lady who is an expert at marketing and we have hired her to help us market our books better.

We launched Elizabeth Bennet's Inheritance at the beginning of this month. I had finished that book in October, but we had to wait to publish because Kevin was working with Harry, our narrator, to record an audio book for EBI.

So anyway, I was of course writing away at a new book, a Christmas story. Still Pride and Prejudice, of course.

I was sitting on the couch a few days ago, minding my own business, when Kevin said that our marketing lady said that we really needed to get this Christmas book out this coming week.

And I was like, WHAT??


I was nearly done but still, the first draft is the first draft and I still had to do a full edit, and Kevin had to do a full edit, and our paid editor had to do a full edit.

The other option, according to our marketing guru, was to wait until January to publish and change the title and the tone away from Christmas and onto winter.

As Inigo says in the Princess Bride, I hate waiting.

So I finished the book, and I am almost done with my second edits.

Kevin is working on his edits. Our editor is working on her edits. Not the same things at the same time. There is a process.

But anyway, we will have it done by tomorrow probably.

Stephen King, whom I certainly admire as a writer (though I don't like horror so...) said in his book, "On Writing" that authors should finish a manuscript, set it aside for 6 months, and then come back to it with fresh eyes.

How adorable.

We don't do that.

Anyway, the new book launches next week. Wow.

Sunday, November 19, 2023

The End of a Generation

 My great- aunt died yesterday. She was in her late 80's and was the last of her generation.

My parents are each 80 so given that Ingrid was a full generation older, it is surprising that she was not so much older than my parents.

But she was born in Germany, came to the United States after the war, and eventually married my youngest great-uncle, who was some years older than she was.

He died some years ago at a ripe old age. Ingrid had a pretty hard childhood -- she was a child during World War II in Germany! She was an incredibly sweet, kind, generous person. She was amazing. People loved her.

The last few months have been hard and she was ready to go to be with the Lord. It is sad for us, but happy for her.

My great-uncle, her husband, farmed an old "family farm" for much of his life. When Francis was in his early 90's, he would still go out on the tractor to work the fields.

Francis and Ingrid did not have children, and no one in the family was interested in being a farmer. By God's grace, a wonderful family moved into a rental house next door to my great-aunt and -uncle's house.

For many years, they acted as family. They were kind and caring to my relatives. They looked after them. As time went on, they did more and more of the farm work.

They were such a gift, and I am confident they loved my relatives as much as Ingrid and Francis loved them.

The farm will go to this family, or already has, or something. It makes me happy that someone still loves that land, someone still wants to farm it. 

Good-bye, dear great aunt Ingrid. I am thankful that you are walking heaven's bright streets today, and sad for those of us left behind.

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Refinishing the Table


Kevin is fixing up our dining room table. We currently have the dining room set up with card tables. 

I am proud that our garage is available for doing jobs like this. We just remove cars and...voila!

Thursday, November 9, 2023



Gorgeous colors still! It has been such a pleasant autumn with beautiful colors.

I assigned Settlers of Catan this week for school, just one game, and it is now the new craze. Even Rose is playing and enjoying it, which I am thankful for.

Nice sunset

This pic is from a couple of weeks ago when my parents were visiting. When lots of Kendigs are in the same room, we fill it up!

It is like we have a bunch of kids or something!

Sarah, Rose and I went to the library a couple of weeks ago. An older woman stopped us and gave this quilt to Rose; she said her daughter had made it, and wanted to give it to "a little girl with glasses." Rose adores it. Isn't it cute?

Wednesday, November 1, 2023



Angela and Rose love each other

It snowed last night! Obviously got cold -- mid 20's! Kevin was out and about yesterday evening and saw a genuine snow squall! Crazy! It will warm up later this week.

Last night five Kendigs went to our church's Halloween alternative Trunk or Treat. It was inside and as I said, it was bitterly cold outside and windy. We had over 300 people visit!  Lydia helped with making hot cocoa and Angela ran a game and Sarah and Daniel and I sat behind two themed tables and Rose ran around. It was a good experience though a little tiring.  I was being very extroverted -- chatting with people and complimenting them on costumes. It was an honor to serve and I did not DISLIKE it, but I was worn out mentally by the time we got in the car to go home. I can be very outgoing but I am an introvert so need some recovery time after being surrounded by people.

Daniel wanted to be a plague doctor so Angela, being an awesome big sister, made a mask for him!

Angela was  a... I am not sure what she was. She made a mask. She looked really cute in a scary way.

My parents visited over the weekend. It was great seeing them. They live in Michigan. We hung out. We had turkey. My father and I took a walk around the back three acres together. It was not cheery weather so we didn't go and do anything exciting but that is fine with me. Lots of talking, lots of catching up. It was good.

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

First month Plus of Kevin's retirement from the Air Force

 So it has been a little more than a month since Kevin stopped working for the Air Force.

How has it been going?

Mostly very well. It is great that Kevin has more time to rest and spend time with the family.

It is great that he has more time to work on the book business. He is a very smart person who likes to dive deep into new things so he is learning all kinds of stuff about marketing and book cover design and so on and so forth.

We both are adjusting. I don't like change. I like control. So a huge change in our lifestyle requires good communication. But yes, all in all, it has been great.

We have a new book coming out in about two weeks. Hooray!

Fall Colors


We are having the loveliest fall colors!  These pics are just from around our house; there are a bunch of far more beautiful trees but I don't have pictures.

I used to NOT like autumn because it heralded the onslaught of winter. But now I like winter. I like cozy days inside. I like the pool being closed because it is less work. I like no living chiggers.

It is gorgeous outside. It really is. Today was in the 70s and lovely.