A Bride for the Sheriff

A Bride for the Sheriff

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

MerryChristmas everyone!

This has been an interesting year full of surprises and challenges. I published my first two books and got a bit more involved with my wonderful writing club-Romance Authors of the Heartland. Thanks to all of you who have read the books and for your insightful comments.

My husband and I lost our precious little dog Gracie to a brain tumor on Halloween. We miss her everyday. My tribute to her are twelve years of wonderful memories and book three. Grace Freeport is the name of a new character. Grace, of course for her name, and Freeport is the town she is from in Illinois. The title is (for now) Autumn Faith-Grace's Story.

I am on chapter two and hope to publish it late this spring.
Well, time to go bake some pies to take to the family dinner today.

"May your days be merry and bright..."

I'd love to hear form you on this blog.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Neat article

Last week I was blessed to be featured in an article in my local paper.It tied in my American History teaching job with my second career writing. It was fun to have people stop me and remark on it. Funny how a little encouragement can go a long way. 

I guess that's a good lesson. Even a simple smile or kind word can change someone's entire outlook. Have a peaceful week-end. You're worth it and so am I. Remember the old psychology book, I'm Okay, You're Okay. Still great advice.


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wonderful November weather

It's hard to believe there are only a couple days left in November. We've been blessed in western Iowa with mild weather and best of all- no ice!

My holiday shopping is nearly done and I managed to avoid freaky Friday. I know, lots of people love shopping the day after Thanksgiving, but not me. I worked in retail for years and that day was always exhausting. Now I'm delighted to stay home with hot tea, a warm throw and a good book.

I just finished reading Janet Evanovich's Notorious Nineteen. It was a fun read. If you enjoy Stephanie Plum you'll like this story.

Gentle reminder from this teacher and writer: books make great gifts for all ages. keep your brain engaged. Read.

Take care,

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Writing again

I've been remiss in keeping up this blog but I'm vowing to do better. School is busy and we've just completed our first trimester. Hard to believe that it is one third done and that Thanksgiving is less than two weeks away.

My hand is finally healed from carpal tunnel surgery and I'm ready to start on book number three of my Back to Omaha series. If you haven't checked out the first two- please do so. Faith of the Heart and Still Faithful are available in print and Kindle versions.

I will be doing a book signing on November 17th at 1:00-3:00 at Tweedt Engineering, 4030 Greenview, Council Bluffs. Iowa.

Hope to see you there.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Still Faithful available now!


It has been a few weeks since I've posted but I have a good excuse. I had carpal tunnel surgery and am limited in using my left hand.  Yes, I am left-handed. Sigh.

Anyway, Still Faithful is now available on Amazon.com. It is the continuation of the story of crazy Cal and his obsession with Claire Maxwell in 1870's Omaha, Nebraska. There are new twists and new characters. Please take a look. I think you'll enjoy it.

Meanwhile it's a lovely October day and I am going to go swish through the fallen leaves.


Sunday, September 9, 2012

Good morning! It's a beautiful cool day here in western Iowa. I am determined to get some writing down today and a little shopping.

 Big news! The sequel to Faith of the Heart, Still Faithful, should be available very soon on Kindle, and in paperback form from Amazon or me directly. Look for it in about 2-3 weeks!  

Until then, if you're in the mood for a good buy on Kindle, Amazon is running several books for $1.99 today. One of my favorite authors, Debbie Macomber, has 16 Lighthouse Road featured.

Enjoy your day!

Monday, August 27, 2012

I'm baaaack!

It's been two weeks since I've stopped in. I could use the excuse I've been busy, but we all are so let's leave that one alone. School is in full swing and the halls are bursting with kids.

Every year about this time I pick up somebody's cold germs and last Friday I really struggled to get through the day. By the time I got home I was miserable. Needless to say I spent the weekend and today sleeping, sipping hot tea and thanking my lucky stars for substitute teachers and  me having everything organized enough to be able to have someone else take over.

For now I will get to bed early and hopefully have a good day tomorrow. Sounds like a good wish for you too.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Back to School!

I'm having trouble wrapping my brain around the fact that the school year has begun. I reported last week and my students start Wednesday.

To celebrate I am running my paperback, Faith of the Heart, on sale for $7.99. If you order it and leave me a note on this blog, I'll send you an autographed card.

The Kindle version is only $1.99 and the offer stands.

Happy school days.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Heading North

A wedding is always a wonderful occasion. This week-end my nephew will make the transition from bachelor to married man. He is so very excited.

Please wish him well.  


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Sale on Faith of the Heart

Good morning,
Love cowboys, Civil War times, inspirational romance?
If you've been thinking about buying the Kindle version of Faith of the Heart now is your chance!
It's available for $1.99 on Amazon!


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Coyotes in the back !

I live in a suburban area of a large town. Behind my house are several acres of soybeans and corn. Last week , about 8:00 PM, I walked through the fields and was screamed at by a red-tail hawk, saw deer in the corn, and a small pack of  coyotes hunting.

I've often heard the coyotes howling and my little terrier stands at the fence mesmerized, when they do, but this was the first time I actually saw them. Three were hunting in the soy beans while one stood watch on a knoll. When he spotted me I started backing up slowly.

He watched me carefully until I was no longer a threat. It was a very cool experience.

Try altering your path and see what you discover.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Happy 5th of July!

The neighborhood is quiet, my dog has stopped trembling, and all is well in her world. I hope yours is too!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Olive Branch signing

Thanks to all of you who came to the signing last Saturday. Lorna  Seilstad  and I had a great time meeting you.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Enjoy this original story.

Last year the Midwest suffered severe flooding. I wrote this story after hearing how people were being forced from their homes. Please send me a comment if you'd like.

                                                                Flood of Emotions

            “The levee just burst at Hamburg!” I looked up from my romance novel as my husband Joe snapped off the 6:00 news. “You know what that means don’t ya?”
“Yeah, it means those poor folks are going to have a mess in their basements.” I marked my page with a finger and glanced over at him sprawled in his recliner.
“More than that, honey. It means we’d better be packing up our stuff too. If that levee broke, the one up here north of town may go too.”
Inwardly I groaned as I looked around. Joe and I live on the garden level of a decent apartment complex in Council Bluffs, Iowa. We’re middle aged, childless, and we had a fair amount of stuff. You know how it accumulates over the years. The two bedroom ‘suite’ (I use the term loosely) and a garage, was stuffed with our worldly possessions. Located just about five miles from the Missouri River we enjoyed the quiet area and nearby park and golf course.
My name is Kay and I teach social studies at a nearby middle school and try to forget about it in the summer. It’s not that I don’t like teaching, it’s just that, I really like my summers off. Some smart aleck once said that teaching is a great profession because the hours are short, the summers are long and there is no accountability. I groaned when I heard that but there is some truth in the statement. Anyway, I digress.
It was now June and I was just getting settled into a comfortable vacation routine. Clean house a little, read a little, and cook healthy meals for Joe and myself. We’re both trying to lose 20 pounds, (who isn’t?) and exercise more. For me that means walking our Norwich Terrier, Gracie, around the neighborhood. Joe works construction so that means his exercise consists of going up and down ladders.
We have a comfortable, somewhat detached marriage and enough friends to pull together an impromptu barbeque or pizza and movie night. We don’t have a lot of money, the construction industry is soft but with my salary, we can pay our bills. The bank account is adequate and as long as my 16 year- old Blazer and his beat-up truck keep running we don’t have a car payment. Yeah, life is pretty good; not to Hollywood standards, but to good old middle- of-America standards. And hey, since that’s where I live I had no worries. But now…
Morning arrives and Joe heads off to work after slurping down orange juice, coffee and an enormous bowl of raisin bran- the two scoop kind. I linger over my coffee at the table but my thoughts are swirling. Are we really at risk? If I pack up this stuff where do we store it? Where will we go? I turn on the morning news and see that the flood level for the Missouri is 29 feet. Currently the river is at 35.2 feet. Hunh. This is more serious than I thought.                                                I have a bad habit of tuning out the world in the summer and don’t read the paper or watch the news very often.  Yes, we’ve had a lot of rain lately and there was a lot of snow in the mountains this past winter but flooding? Really? I grab my keys and head out the door. Gracie dancing around my feet, is excited to go for a car ride.
I head up to the highest point in Council Bluffs, a tall bluff known as Lewis and Clark Landing. Two hundred plus years ago the explorers stopped here and met with local Native Americans. Now a pretty tourist and picnic site, the landing offers a view of the Missouri River and the city of Omaha. I am not the only one there. Dozens of people are milling about and speaking in hushed whispers about the swollen river. It is higher and wider than I have ever seen in my 50 years of living here.
            Roads drop off into water, sandbags are being piled up and parts of Interstate 80 are closed down due to flooding. Okay, time to quit stalling. Gracie and I head home with a stop for cardboard boxes and heavy duty tape. I punch in Joe’s cell number on my own phone and happen to catch him in his truck.
            “Sweetie, I was just up at Lewis and Clark and…”                                                                 “I know, I think we’d better pack up the apartment and the garage.”                                   “I’m already on it. I’ve got the Blazer crammed with boxes but what do we do with all of this stuff? Where do we go? Joe, I’m scared.” My voice shook.
            Joe’s voice softened, “Honey, it’ll be okay. It’s just stuff. What’s important is that we’re gonna be safe and we’ll figure this out together. Concete’s here, gotta go”.
            I heard a click and was left with a dead line. For the first time in a long time Joe was warm and caring. Talking about us, as a team. Let me point something out. We get along well, but we are like a lot of couples, we often take each other for granted and sometimes we don’t really listen to one another.   But today he’d picked up on something in my voice, some hesitation, some uncertainty. A warm glow ignited in my stomach and I pulled the car into the complex parking lot.
A couple hours later I had three piles in the spare room: toss, donate, pack. I was on a mission and making progress. It felt good. By dinner time the bedroom was stripped down to everything but the bed and a few changes of clothing in the closet.
Joe dragged in and surveyed the organized chaos. He waggled an eyebrow at me.
“Guess you got a plan Stan?”
“No need to be coy, Roy”, I retorted. One thing nice about being married to someone a long time, you understand their movie and song references.
He followed me into the kitchen and I offered him a cold Bud Light. We ate a simple meal of grilled chicken and salad and bowls of cold crisp watermelon.  Afterwards, as he devoured brownies with whipped topping, I outlined our plan.
“We can store our stuff in my sister’s garage in west Omaha. She’s well away from any threat. I figure we’ll stay here with just the bare minimum. The bed, some clothes, the portable black and white…”
 He groaned, but said nothing.
“Now Joe, you can live without your big screen T.V. for a couple of months.”
“Yeah, what about you and all those romance books and history books you’re always buried in? And all that cross-stitch stuff you’ve always fooling with. I mean, creating with.”
“Well, I made a big mound of books to donate to Goodwill and I know I’m never going to finish all those projects so they’re in the ‘pitch pile’. I can get by with my Kindle and one project. Actually it’s kind of a relief to get rid of all this stuff. Doesn’t the place look larger already?”
Joe glanced around and grinned. “I suppose you think I’m gonna do the same thing?”
“You are and right now.” I shoved a large cardboard carton in his hands and pointed to the front door.
“You get the joy of sorting through the garage and all your tools.”
“But I need them for work,” he protested.
“Then cram as much as you can in your truck tool boxes and store the rest.” I turned back to the kitchen to clean up the dinner dishes and feed Gracie. I heard the door shut behind him.
That night as we lay in bed Joe pulled me close. Something he hadn’t done in a long time. I snuggled against his broad chest and sighed softly.
“Kay, this could be a good thing. I’ve been thinking. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a vacation, a long time since we’ve had time together. Let’s take a few days, after we get packed up and go somewhere. Work is slow, I can get away. If we’re not extravagant we could go to Kansas City or Chicago and have a real vacation. Or we could go camping…”
“Camping,” I chortled, “Honey we’ll be camping here in this apartment.”
“Well then, we’ll just get away. What do you say to a few days in K.C.?”
“I say, yes!”         
            That night we were closer than we’d been in a long time and in a very good way. Blessings sometimes come disguised as problems. We woke the next day tangled in our sheets and grinning like naughty teenagers. Breakfast was late too.
After pushing Joe out the front door I resumed my cleaning, clearing and packing. Coming across odds and ends of stuff I didn’t even know I had made me wonder why I’d kept the stuff. Tacky souvenirs from Yellowstone, old chipped plates, scraps of ribbons that I guess   would be turned in to something crafty , were gleefully added to the toss pile. I was feeling lighter already.
While I worked the drone of the television kept me company. Okay , so call me weird but I love old westerns. No actor today can hold a candle to John Wayne or Jimmy Stewart and I never get enough of those old movies. The plots were the same and the good guys wore white but at least you know who a good guy was because the bad guy was always Bruce Dern. But again, I digress.
At noon I switched to the local news to get a weather and flood update. The reports were not good. From what I could tell the water flow was being managed in South Dakota at Gavins Point Dam and the Army Corps of Engineers was not sure if levees up and down the river would hold. Never in the history of these structures had so much water flowed. They didn’t know what would happen and the situation would be this way all summer and into early fall. 
I finished my peanut butter sandwich, washing it down with about a gallon of iced tea (did I mention I’m an iced tea addict) and scarfed the last brownie. Hey, I burned off a lot of calories packing, thank you. I went back to the task at hand and after another run for cardboard boxes, finished packing up our lives.
When Joe came home we ate a quick dinner of chef salads, crusty rolls and ice tea. He slurped a popsicle for dessert and we loaded up the truck and my Blazer. After three trips our stuff was safely stashed in my sister’s garage and we came home to a strangely quiet, yet clutter- free apartment.
“Hey, honey,” Joe said as he looked around. “Remind you of anything?”
I wiped a smudge of dirt off my face with a wrist and smiled. “Yes. It looks like our first apartment. Remember we had practically nothing, but man were we happy.”
“Yeah, we were, come here.” Joe pulled me close and Gracie jumped at our legs wanting some of the attention too. We turned slowly and surveyed the living room. It now contained two folding lawn chairs, a portable black and white T.V. on a milk crate and a slightly worn dog bed.         
            “All the comforts of home, I guess.”
            Joe patted my back. “It’s just temporary Kay, by fall the threat will be over and God willing we won’t have suffered any damage. And hopefully no lives will be lost. Think of the thousands of others this is affecting. I think we’re getting off pretty easy.”
            I just nodded in agreement. In the giant scheme of things this was nothing. In fact it just might be a new beginning for a lot of people. I know it is for us.
That night as I lay awake next to my gently snoring guy I was overcome with a flood of emotions. I was sad to think of the destruction that would come, the turmoil of people’s lives, and the inevitable lost of property and possessions but I was also glad of the changes for Joe and me. We had found each other again and, along with Gracie we were a family. Nothing else matters.
Authors Note: The summer of 2011 saw flooding along the Missouri River so significant that  thousands of people were displaced and damages to home and property was well into millions of dollars.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

All you've done makes the person you've become

I was working at school today with a co-teacher on social studies plans for the up-coming school year. We got off track and talked about our pasts. Okay, so the past and history isn't really too far off-track. Anyway, we both learned something new about one another. I made the comment that  all the jobs I've held have made me a more well-rounded and  interesting teacher and writer. She stared at me for an instant and then she got that 'aha' look. "You know, I never thought about it that way," she replied. She continued,   "That's what makes me so damn fascinating! All the times I've been fired." We both about fell off our chairs laughing.

Find something funny and fall off your chair!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Research adds interest and authenticity

Using actual historical events adds a layer of interest to your story. Be accurate and responsible when researching. Use primary resources when possible (diaries, letters, first-hand accounts). Avoid sites where anyone can add anything. Yes, there is a lot of false information wafting through the internet. You will be amazed at the bizarre things that happen in real life.

For example, did you know that  Confederate president Jefferson Davis hid hundreds of thousands of dollars in gold and silver from the Yankees when they invaded Richmond, Virginia in 1865? Did you know that it hasn't been accounted for?   

Read more in my second book Still Faithful coming soon on Amazon.com.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Summer days

Ahhhhh! Kids live for summer vacation but so do teachers! It's Tuesday and I'm doing chores with the windows wide open and the sweet morning breezes wafting in. Later today I will get to work on a query letter but for now it's laundry and errands. Later alligator! 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Wrapping up a school year

This is the final week of classes for my middle school. as always I have mixed emotions. Yes,I'm excited to have time to focus on my writing but I also will miss many of my students. I attended high school graduation yesterday and was amazed to see how my former students have grown and matured. I barely knew many of them. Time does march on! Have a great week.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Prairie Piecegoods Booksigning tomorrow

Enjoy Florence days and shop the unique Prairie Piecegoods shop. 8611 N 30th St., Omaha, Ne. Saturday May 12th. See an array of gifts and books by local authors.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sunday at the library

Today the CB library hosted a local author fair. Seventeen area authors were there including best-selling writers Mary Connealy and Lorna Seilstad. It was a great opportunity to meet area authors.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Writing to get it right

As a teacher I see kids hurry through just to get an assignment done. I also am guilty of this at times. For instance just a moment ago I posted  an incomplete entry about an upcoming book signing event. So I will try again.
On May5th I will sign copies of Faith of the Heart at Ogden Salon at 275 W Broadway in Council Bluffs at 11:00. I would love to see you all there.


Whew! That's better!

Book Signing May 5th

I am pleased to announce  I will be signing Faith of the Heart at Ogden Salon Saturday May5th at 11:00 am in Council Bluffs. Please join me.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Book igning Event Saturday

Saturday April 21st there will be a book signing event at Tweedt Engineering to celebrate the publishing of Faith of the Heart.

Please join me at : Tweedt Engineering and Construction, 4030 Greenview , Council Bluffs, IA from 10:00 to 11:30am.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter

Hello and Happy Easter! The day started out cool and overcast but it is warming up nicely.

I am excited to announce my debut novel is now available in paperback at Amazon.com. Faith of the Heart is sporting a new cover and I am glad to offer it to paperback readers. Check it out and let me know what you think.
For those of you who have asked ,Still Faithful, the second book in the series is now in the editing process. I hope to have it available next month as an e-book.


Monday, March 26, 2012

Hot Monday!

Okay, so it is March 26th and 83 degrees in western Iowa. What gives? No, it isn't global warming!

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Why do we have to do this?"

"Why do we have to do this?" is a common question teachers are asked. Sometimes the answer is simple. To practice. To practice is to improve, to grow to new levels, achieve standards or reach a particular goal. Just as students need to practice their skills, writers do too. So today I am practicing. I am practicing on this blog and practicing as I edit the second book in my Back to Omaha series.

Later I'll go outside and practice my yard clean-up skills. Ugh. Happy Saturday.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

A crummy day, but good evening

Today was one of those days you just get through. My students were dazed with spring fever,it's 75 degrees when it should be about 50 and they, I mean we, are dreaming of summer vacation.

My Gracie is still under the weather so I stopped at the vet's for another round of meds. When I got home though the proof for my paperback version of Faith of the Heart was waiting for me. While it needs some work, it was still thrilling to hold MY book in my hands. After some tweaking, it will be ready to go on sale through Amazon.com.

A long awaited book review of Faith was in our local paper and that was fun too. Then a girl friend called and offered to host a book signing party for me. Maybe things are starting to jell.

Have a great rest of the evening. I plan to write a bit more on Faith's sequel, Still Faithful.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Blustery Sundays

The wind is blowing and I think about "The Ides of March" arriving soon. I just washed Gracie (my terrier) and she is snoozing at my feet. Bath time is exhausting for her.

I am at a difficult spot in my sequel and keep putting off writing. Why is it that when a person is so close to finishing a big project they seem to freeze? My  psychology background would say it was a fear of  failure- or maybe of success. Hmmm.


Monday, February 27, 2012

Reaching goals

My favorite quote for helping me sit down and write is by Alan Shepard. I keep it posted on my refrigerator.

"Have you worked toward your dreams today?"

Well, have you?


Friday, February 24, 2012

How to find time to write.

Lately people have been asking me how to find time to write. The answer is to turn off the television. Easier said than done. I love old movies and old sitcoms. I can waste an entire evening ( and still do) watching episodes of M*A*S*H. I have a special fondness for Rifleman too, if you can believe that.

Try to write for a while first, then reward yourself with your favorite activity. At the end of the day you'll have words on a page. Those words are what get you to the next words, and the next. Keep your butt in the chair and eventually you'll finish your article, story, book, whatever. So stand up, reach for the remote and shut it down.


Thursday, February 23, 2012

Windy Thursdays

It's windy, it's cold and still February! I spent the entire day grading exams and posting grades for the end of our second trimester. It is rewarding to see evidence of learning and improvement from the previous trimester with several students. Snuggle up with hot tea and a good movie tonight.
I plan to.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Rainy Mondays

There's an old Carpenter's song, "Rainy Days and Mondays Always Get Me Down." Well today I'm feeling pretty good. It's my birthday and I got through an entire day without having to hear the tired old birthday song. Hope your day is good too.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Faith of the Heart (Back to Omaha Adventure) by Jewell Tweedt | Bestsellersworld.com

Faith of the Heart (Back to Omaha Adventure) by Jewell Tweedt | Bestsellersworld.com
Hello and welcome to my brand new blog. If you love stories of faith, hope and western romance this is the place to be. I will be sharing stories that touch my heart and hopefully will touch yours. I love the humor that often goes along with those traits and will share the funny things I experience as a middle school teacher and newly published writer. I will also share portions of my new book, Faith of the Heart, in diary form and give you peeks into its sequel, Still Faithful. So grab a cup of coffee or maybe a glass of iced tea (my favorite) and come along for the ride as this technically-challenged, middle-aged, middle school teacher continues her journey into the wild unknown.