History in the Here and Now

I have spent countless days (years?) researching the life story of Redondo Beach, California, where the Italian side of my mother’s family planted deep and long-lasting roots soon after the turn of the 20th century. I have an old chest full of postcards, books, newspapers, sheet music, and even an old bank deposit book. These…

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Books Are Here to Stay

Contrary to the rumors you may have heard, books aren’t going anywhere soon. From hieroglyphics to texting, from Shakespeare to a warm Southern drawl, we use words in a varied and ever changing way.  Whether we write them, speak them, sing them, or convey them through sign language, from the time we utter our first…

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Reading Exercises Your Brain

I want to be in good physical condition. When I was young, I wanted to look good or perform well in a favorite sport. Today my desire to stay in shape is more about remaining mentally alert. Are you concerned your memory is not what it used to be? Read. Do you want to calm…

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Middle Grade Fiction: Not for Children Only

Middle grade fiction is targeted to fourth through sixth graders but as in any reading level the line isn’t fast and firm. If it’s written well, I enjoy novels written for middle graders—after all, I was once that age myself. Sometimes a good story, yet one I don’t have to analyze too deeply can be…

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We Must Choose Sides

WELCOME TO GUEST WRITER, KAREN MEYER – “The Ohio Frontier History Lady” and Author of Eight Books Including North to Freedom and Choosing Sides. Writers write. There are many reasons people venture into writing—fame, fortune, revealing unknown history, or need to tell a personal story. I began writing historical fiction for children because I find history fascinating and…

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Treasures from a Mulberry Tree

“Kids don’t know how to play anymore.” You’ve probably heard this said.  I’m happy to report that creative play is alive and well, but sometimes you’ll need to “intentionally” help advance it. A few weeks ago, two of our granddaughters—cousins—spent time at our home. I’ve learned to limit the length of their get-togethers. They beg…

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