Archive for the ‘People’ Category
It is my pleasure to welcome Sally Cronin as my special guest. Sally has a daily blog covering a variety of subjects close to her heart including writing, health and music, which is apply called Smorgasbord – Variety is the Spice of Life. Sally is a generous person who shares blog posts and promotes other writers. Please check out her site and say Hello. Her Christmas grotto has some wonderful gift ideas.
Without further ado, here is the lovely and talented Sally Cronin!
Thank you Darlene for offering me the opportunity to talk about my new book and also some background on my life and those that have influenced me.
1. You have had a very interesting life Sally. Can you tell my readers a bit about yourself.
My father was in the Royal Navy and we travelled with him whenever it was possible to do so. This meant a disruptive but fascinating childhood living in Ceylon which of course is now Sri Lanka, Malta and South Africa. By the time I was fourteen I had been to seven different schools and enjoyed some amazing experiences.
After school I trained as a dental nurse but then moved through a number of industries including hospitality, retail, advertising, telecommunications and radio and television broadcasting. I have always been interested in health and nutrition so trained as a nutritional therapist nearly twenty years ago and I have worked with clients in Ireland and the UK. My own weight issues led to my first book which in turn led to forming Moyhill publishing in 2004. Since then I have not stopped writing and hope that will continue until I drop. It is one of the few jobs that you do not have an age or physical limit.
Since David and I married in 1980 we have lived in the United States, Ireland, Belgium, UK and of course currently in Spain. That has added a wonderful richness to our life and as a writer I treasure all of it.
2. Tell us about your latest book.
My latest book is Tales from the Garden. Fairy stories for all ages from five to ninety-five with the usual fairy princesses, monsters, magic and romance. As it has 80 illustrations I hope it will appeal to children and those that like to read a good bedtime story.
3. What inspired you to write this book?
We will be leaving our home for the last 16 years here in Spain once the house is sold. The garden is large and has several small areas that are mostly hidden from view. We inherited several large stone statues that we uncovered when cutting back hedges and bushes. Most are very heavy and there is no way that we can take them with us unfortunately and I decided to write stories around them. I now have a book that contains happy memories that I can take with me wherever I go.
4. You have written other books, perhaps you could tell us something about them.
My first book in 2001, Size Matters, was my story of how I became morbidly obese at over 330lbs and my journey as I studied the human body and nutrition and designed a programme to lose 150lbs. This led to a family health manual, Just Food for Health which was also the name of my diet advisory service that I opened in Ireland and then in the UK. I have always written short stories and this resulted in Flights of Fancy and other fiction including two novels, Just an Odd Job Girl and Sam, A Shaggy Dog Story. I have gone back to health in two other books including a health manual for men and an anti-aging book, Turning Back the Clock.
5. What sort of books do you read?
I love to escape into the books I am reading and tend towards thrillers, epic novels that span centuries and adventure. I also enjoy reading non-fiction; usually science and health.
6. What are some of your all time favourite books?
I love all of Wilbur Smith’s books but in particular the sagas of the Courtney family that take you through the challenges of settlers as they explored deep into Africa. Jean M. Auel has written an amazing series Earth’s Children with six stunning books set around 25,000 years ago. The series follows the life of a girl called Ayla from childhood through to motherhood and is captivating. I had my DNA tested in one of the genetic ancestry programmes when they first began and discovered that I was related to a woman whose bones were found in a cave in Southern France 20,000 years ago. This began a fascination with that era and those that inhabited the dangerous environment.
7. Who has influenced you the most in your life?
That is difficult because there are so many people and events that have impacted on the way that I feel, live and write. From my first teacher, Mrs Miller who slipped me more advanced books to read to my husband David who believes that everyone should have the freedom to be the best they can. I have had some great role models and mentors in my various careers and personal life and I am grateful for every one of them.
8. What is your idea of a successful life?
My perception of success has changed over the years. When I was younger of course, there were a few things that needed to be ticked off the list including money, status, nice house, car etc. I was quite prepared to work for them and over the years most were achieved. However, by that time I realised that in fact there were other much more important goals in life including health, great relationships, good friends and a constant access to new ideas and experiences. I feel incredibly successful and it has nothing to do with material wealth but down to simple pleasures that we can all enjoy if we choose to.
9. Anything else you would like to tell the readers.
First and foremost I am a reader and I would be devastated if I did not have access to books in any format. I am so grateful for anyone who picks up one of my books and enjoys reading the story. I hope that readers understand how vital and appreciated they are. Without them what would be the point of writing? Also avid readers are potentially the top writers of tomorrow and I encourage everyone to get their stories written on a blog, novel, short story or poetry collection. It is an excellent way to get your voice heard.
10. Where can we find your books?
I have my own bookstore which is accessed through any of the individual book sites. The latest book Tales from the Garden can be found on http://moyhill.com/tales/ and because it is my own store the Ebook is discounted by 50%.
My books are available on Amazon and the quickest route is through my author page.
Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Sally-Georgina-Cronin/e/B003B7O0T6
Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/author/sallycroninbooks
Thank you very much Darlene for featuring my here today… I always love an opportunity to talk about myself and my books.
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Thank you, Sally for making an appearance on my blog site. All the best for your exciting new book.
I just returned from a trip home to Alberta, Canada, where I attended my grandson´s graduation and a large family reunion, visited many friends and relatives and spent quality time with mom, my son and his family. Needless to say I had a wonderful time. I´ll let the pictures tell the story.
So glad I could be there for this important occasion.
I saw many relatives I hadn´t seen for some time, including my 91 year old great aunt and her husband in Calgary, my dad´s 90 year old brother and my 86 year old great uncle in Medicine Hat. Always good to see them and hear their wonderful stories, some of which I plan to share on this blog.
I´ll write more about the family reunion which deserves its own post.
I´ve put together a short video of our travels in 2014. Great times with great people!
We are blessed with so many good friends and this past while we have had the pleasure of spending time with many of them. I’d like to share some pictures with you.
We have lived in this area for fourteen years and only just discovered a wonderful place called the Riverhouse Restaurant. It is so lovely to sit on the patio, watch the sunset over the marina, and share a delicious meal with good friends.
We enjoyed a fabulous barbeque at our friend’s acreage. We were greeted with a welcoming sign which I believe means “Home Forever More” as we pulled in the driveway. It was a lovely day with boccie ball, lawn darts and croquette organized, plenty of interesting people to chat with and an amazing display of food all in a picturesque setting.
Another fiend invited us to a salmon barbeque in her lovely back yard.
We have been so lucky this summer; plenty of good food, good weather and great friends!
A wonderful blogging friend of mine, Debra Eve, has a great blog called Late Bloomer. I met Debra when we were both guest authors on Gary Doi’s blog, A Hopeful Sign. Recently she posted a moving story about High River, Alberta; a town damaged by the terrible floods last summer.
Debra also has some stories in a recently published book complied by Gary Doi, Inspiring Hope One Story at a Time, All net proceeds from Inspiring Hope will be donated to the Asturias Academy Library in Xela, Guatemala—a private, non-profit Pre K-12 school dedicated to helping the most vulnerable students in the community.
Please hop on over to her blog and read about the town, the book and an update on Momo the amazing cat.
I love my copy of Inspiring Hope and everyone loves Momo!
You know how I love to encourage young writers. Today’s fun post is part of a Choose Your Own Story written and hosted by T. Isenhoff and M. Isenhoff on their Storyboys blog. T. is in 3rd grade, and M. is in 6th grade. This story was their winter home-school project. A number of us have agreed to feature part of the story on our blogs. Travel over to the boys’ blog to start at the beginning. Have fun!
Here’s the permalink to the boys’ first post http://wp.me/p2bspO-5A then follow the rest until you get to my post. Happy reading!
Both boys let out screams like little girls with spiders on their shoulders.
A shot rang out, silencing the noise. A trickle of plaster fell down on their heads from a bullet hole in the ceiling. “Shut it, or the next shot will find your hide.”
The boys clamped their mouths shut. Coach Theodore motioned them into the room with his gun. They went without objection.
“What are you going to do with us?” Ed asked.
The coach kept his gun trained on the boys. “What choice have you left me?” he answered. “You know too much.”
Tony gulped and clutched his football a little tighter. He’d best keep the man talking. “How’d you get away with the jewelry?” he asked.
Coach Theodore laughed. “The cops in this town are idiots. A little planning and I outwit them every time.”
“You’ve done this before?” Ed asked.
“Why should I tell you?” Coach asked.
“No reason,” Ed yelped.
“What are you going to do with all the loot?” Tony asked.
“I have buyers,” he answered. “The internet is a wonderful source for remaining anonymous. This jewelry will bring a fortune. Then I can resign from coaching football.”
The coach shifted his attention to the jewels for a split second. It was all the time Tony needed. He grasped his football and threw it directly at the gun. It hit its mark, knocking the weapon from the man’s hand and sending it skittering across the room and under a wardrobe.
“Run!” Tony screamed.
The boys rushed out of the room and barely touched the stairs on their way down to the door. They hopped on their bikes and pedaled like mad. When they were a few blocks away, Tony pulled out his cell phone and dialed 911.
“Hello? We’ve just been inside the old Cursed Mansion and found the hideout of the jewelry thief. Coach Theodore is the thief!”
“Who is this?” the voice on the other end replied.
“Tony the Phony? I remember you.” It was quiet for a moment on the line. “You know it’s illegal to prank call this emergency number, don’t you?”
“This isn’t a joke!” Tony cried. “Send someone to the mansion and you’ll see for yourself.”
The voice sighed. “We’ll send someone along shortly.”
“If you wait too long, Coach will be gone!” he screamed.
That evening, the boys heard on the news that police had found the hideout of the jewelry thief. They had a suspect in mind, but the crook had gotten away.
“Wouldn’t you know it?” Ed asked. “If the police had believed us a little sooner, we could be famous crime solvers.”
“I just wish my new coach could have seen that throw,” Tony mourned.
What a great project! Fabulous job boys. Keep writing more intriguing stories like this.
I don’t like the idea of getting older. In fact I fight it tooth and nail. On the other hand, I also realize it is a privilege denied to many and am thankful I am able to continue to enjoy this wonderful life. On Friday I turned a year older, like it or not.
I was greeted in the morning with a lovely card and a bouquet of tulips, my favourite flowers, from my DH
At work, the participants in my workshop, after learning it was my birthday, made me a sweet card. I was touched.
At the end of the day I was surprised with a delicious birthday cake from my co-workers.
Photo by Jean François Filion
The next day, DH booked us into The River Rock Casino Resort for an over night stay. This luxury hotel is only a thirty minute drive from our house but it felt like we were in Las Vegas.
The well designed lobby contains waterfalls, totem poles and even a friendly bear. We don’t gamble but the casino on site created a lively and exciting atmosphere. A theatre featuring many interesting and well known musicians is also part of the resort. A great place for people watching while sipping a caramel rockachino and nibbling on a white chocolate and cranberry sconce. Sorry, but I was too busy relaxing to take pictures of the food.
Our suite was spacious enough for a party and overlooked the marina. A package of yummy chocolate macaroons was delivered to the room in honour of my birthday. The overnight stay included a relaxation massage. While I enjoyed my much needed massage at the Absolute spa, DH made use of the fitness centre over looking the pool area.
The number of restaurants to choose from for our dinner, made it hard to decide. I had a Mojito and a fabulous spiced pear salad with goat cheese and grilled prawns at The Curve which was perfect. DH was happy with his butter chicken and on tap beer. The best thing was a compliment on my hair cut by the young waiter!
After a fabulous sleep on the oh so comfy bed, we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast at the buffet with many tasty choices before heading back home. We didn’t travel far but what a nice get-away to celebrate another year of living.
Text messages from both of the kids, a phone call from Mom and another from my younger brother. Cards from all over the world and 140 messages on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn; I was sure feeling the love.
I guess getting older is not so bad after all.