An Honor and a Blessing

Dear friends, It is my honor to have been selected for “In the Spotlight”  this month by PublishPros. Yes, this publication is a dream come true for me, but it never would have happened without the support of PublishPros–Rich C. and Mary H.  These two are in the business of taking manuscripts for edit, working…

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Beautiful Morning at the Twig!

On Saturday, May 4th, I set up a table at the Twig Bookshop in the Pearl District of one of my favorite cities: San Antonio, the Alamo City. Sprinkles of rain fell intermittently, but the awning protected all.  This was Farmer’s Market morning, a weekly event that transforms the entire Pearl area (former home of…

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Bacterial Warriors: Ancient Residents, Both Good and Bad

(Bacteria under the microscope. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock) “Viruses are stealthy predators; they cause infections by entering and multiplying inside the host’s healthy cells. Bacteria are warriors; they are single cells that can survive on their own, inside or outside the body. In the 1800’s it was difficult to know what caused a person’s illness…

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Assassins That Span the Ages: Bacteria and Viruses

(A virus takes up residence in a healthy cell. Photo courtesy of Getty Images.) Imagine that you are a settler in San Antonio of the 1800’s. You and your family have just constructed a jacál, a hut, as your new residence, much like those constructed by María Andrea Castañon and her family. The jacál, with…

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Contest: Thirteen Day Count Down to the Battle at the Alamo

        Dear Follower, For something historical and commemorative, I will be gifting two copies of my book, Footfalls to the Alamo, along with a set of four specially made drink coasters in a drawing. I will pull 2 names out of a hat of those who answer the most questions correctly and thoroughly…

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Jacales in Mexico and South Texas

Jacal, pronounced [ha kol], is a word adapted from Nahatl, language of the ancient Aztecs who ruled Mexico between the 14th and 16th centuries before being conquered by the Spanish. In Nahuatl, the word is “xacalli,” with xah- meaning “adobe” and -calli meaning “house.”  Most jacales were literally huts of various sizes and construction. Jacales…

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Small Book Group Discussions

I’ve been meeting with small book groups to read and discuss Footfalls to the Alamo since last December. I can’t tell you how inspiring it is to meet with people who enjoy reading about Texas history as much as I do.  It’s certainly complicated! At a recent book talk, one woman said something like, “This…

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Señora Candelaria’s Dog—An Ancient, Loving Breed

[SHOW LO EETZ CUINT LEE], this ancient breed of Mexican Hairless dog is highly intelligent, calm, loyal, and loving. Señora Candelaria actually owned this type of dog. Its name is derived from the Nahuatl language. Somewhere a picture of Señora holding this sweet dog on her lap surfaces from time to time. In Footfalls to…

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Summer 2022 First Mate’s Log

We’ve wandered North again, this time to prep our vessel and sail on into the North Channel of Canada. After two plus years “on the hard,” during Covid, we had much to attend to. Critters chewed off the curly wire from the ship’s radio and wreaked havok in the anchor locker, shredding sticks and grasses…

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