The (Obnoxious) Kid on the Plane

*** It’s a prayer all of us have sent up at some point in our lives: Please, God, don’t let the small, rambunctious kid sit near me on the plane. Sometimes prayers get answered. Sometimes, they don’t. Don’t get me wrong, I love children, especially my own more than others, but when I’m packed in…

Annapolis Through A Historic Lens

When I get a few hours of free time and I happen to be feeling inspired, I grab my camera and go. While I have photographed Annapolis several times (and it happens to be my hometown), most often it’s been from the viewpoint of characters in my first novel, Beneath the Mimosa Tree. When I…

When Are You The Happiest? Part One

* I think that we can all confirm the obvious—we work a lot. Here, in the United States, we work many, many hours, whether those hours are at work, outside work, in the classroom, outside the classroom, attending meetings and conferences, or attending other notable business-related practices as needed, when needed. I never realized how…

Home Inspiration: How To Display Collections From Your Travels

Traveling is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and your loved ones. Experiencing things together builds memories that you all will cherish forever. No one can take those remarkable moments from you. There are some places, however, that you visit whereby you may want to bring home a physical remembrance of the…

An Eastern Shore Treasure: Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay

* As a Marylander who sometimes enjoys a quick getaway to the Eastern Shore, I recently had the privilege of once again staying at the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort, Spa and Marina. Situated on the banks of the Choptank River, the resort boasts 342 acres in Cambridge, Maryland. As this was my third…

St. Michaels, Maryland: A Photo Essay & Setting For My New Novel

I love the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Whenever I can steal away and spend time in one of the many adorable towns across the Chesapeake Bay, I jump at the opportunity. Saturday was just such a time. Additionally, I have a vested interest in getting a good “feel” for the place as my new novel…

The Friday Random Thoughts Roundup

I haven’t been blogging much lately, and I’m feeling badly about it. I’ve been incredibly busy with two kids in high school, teaching at the university, volunteering for things, and serving on committees, in addition to actually trying to fit my new mentality of health and fitness into my daily regime. I wish I could…

Savannah in Pictures

* Let’s get the first thing out of the way: Yes, Savannah in June and July is H-O-T. To my fellow Marylanders: the humidity in our area ain’t nothing compared to the humidity in the South. It blows ours away. If your hair is anything like mine, you can count on it being out of…

Breathing In the Air and Tasting the Wines in Napa Valley | Part Two

  (This is part two of my travel piece about Napa Valley and San Francisco. To read part one, click here). Besides the incredible number of wineries, there are some picturesque towns that are definitely worthy of a visit. Napa was our first stop. Perched on the Napa River, the town offers adorable shopping, great…

Breathing in the Air and Tasting The Wines in Napa Valley

First, there was the air, consistently devoid of humidity according the locals, and as fresh and crisp as you would imagine the hills and unspoiled land of Northern California to be. Puffs of soft clouds decorated the blue sky as temperatures hovered in the high sixties. Then, there was the scenery. The rolling greens of…

Preserving Postcards From Travel and Life

Postcards are a cheap, easy way to stay in touch that do not involve you being electronically connected (not that there’s anything wrong with that!). But text messages are not something we keep in a scrapbook, hang on the wall, or display in the house. When we travel, sure, we take lots of photographs, but…