Guinness the Therapy Dog

October is Adopt a Shelter Dog Month (amongst others). Now, Guinness isn’t a shelter dog, but he was given to us by his first owner. We are so happy that he was released to us and we were able to give him a home. He’s been such an asset to our family!

I can’t wait for you to meet him. The picture book series, Guinness the Therapy Dog, is based on him. You’ll discover how he became a therapy dog and his job around the city. Guinness Goes to the Hospital is all about the time he spends with patients, adults and kids, who have been admitted or are in the emergency room. Guinness Goes to the Library will show you how he helps kids read. He loves his job!!!

So, gear up for October and get ready to meet Guinness. If you have a shelter dog in your family, give him or her a big squeeze! Shelter dogs are the best!

Tomorrow is also National Homemade Cookie Day. Get that mixer out and blend together some butter, sugar, and chocolate chips to celebrate the day. If you like coffee, tomorrow is also International Coffee Day, which is great with those homemade cookies.

Enjoy the first day of October! Sonja

It’s Gold Star Mothers’ Day

Each year on Gold Star Mother’s Day the United States president calls on all Americans to display the nation’s flag and hold appropriate meetings to publicly express their love, sorrow, and reverence towards Gold Star Mothers and their families. Government buildings are also required to display the flag.

American Gold Star Mothers, Inc. is an organization of mothers whose sons or daughters served and died while serving their nation in times of war or conflict.

The last Sunday in September is also Parents of Fallen Military Sons and Daughters Day in New Jersey.

This day is a tribute to all parents whose children died as a result of their service with the United States Armed Forces. It commemorates the contributions, commitments and sacrifices made by those parents individually and through the American Gold Star Mothers, Inc.

Who are Gold Star Mothers?

The name the Gold Star Mothers was derived from the custom of military families who put a service flag near their front window. The flag featured a star for each family member serving in their country – living members were denoted in blue but gold stars honored family members who were killed while in duty. In 1918 President Woodrow Wilson approved the wearing of black arm bands bearing a gilt star by those who had a family member who died in the military service to the United States. This distinguished them from the blue stars, representing a family member presently serving in the armed forces.

American Gold Star Mothers, Inc. was incorporated in 1929, obtaining a federal charter from the US Congress. It began with 25 mothers living in the Washington DC area and soon expanded to include affiliated groups throughout the nation. On June 23, 1936, a joint congressional resolution designated the last Sunday in September as Gold Star Mother’s Day, a holiday that has been observed each year by a presidential proclamation. The gold star is not limited to mothers and is awarded as a pin by the US Department of Defense.

This information came from

Wing Family of America

The Wing Coat of Arms

I’ve been thinking a lot about my ancestors. Luckily for me, one of the branches on my family tree has so much history attached to it, and the family has a strong desire to preserve that history. But, much is lost to time–

My picture book based upon the patriarch of the Wing Family of America will be published soon. The text is written and the artist is busy drawing the illustrations. I’m so excited to tell the story of this family as they leave 1600s England for the American colonies.

Unfortunately, the patriarch died before he could stand on American soil. But his desire to leave England was strong in his family and they emigrated a few years later. They settled in Plymouth and then migrated to be some of the original founders of Sandwich, Massachusetts. That’s on Cape Cod. The Wing descendants fought in the American Revolution in a Massachusetts regiment. I often think about those men and women who put everything on the line for their beliefs. It took courage, a lot of courage. I can only hope to be courageous enough to make them proud.

More info on the coat of arms, if you’re interested. This information was taken from :

The coat of arms the Wing Family of America, Inc. “adopted” was the coat of Arms of Sir Theodore Wing, Lord Warden of Wastes and Liveries to King Henry VII (1485-1509)

According to Conway Wing’s Wing Genealogy (1st edition, 1881) In Sir John Bernard Burke’s “Encyclopaedia, or General Armory of England, Scotland and Ireland,” we find what purports to be “The Wing Armour. County of Rutland.” The Heraldic description accompanying it is: “Arms.– Per pale, argent and vert – a maunch counter-charged. Crest.– A maunch per pale, argent and vert, between two wings or.”

The phrase “per pale” (from palus, a stake.) signifies that the field or charge is divided into two equal parts by a perpendicular [vertical] line, with a different field on each side of it… “Argent and vert” are the colors in which the field or figures are depicted. They were designated either by “metals or colors” [in traditional coats, either the figure or the background was in metal, but not both] [The colors/metals were in French, Argent is silver and vert is green].

“A maunch” is a sort of old-fashioned sleeve with long-hanging ends. “Counter-charged” means that the colors were reversed on the from the right half of the coat to the left half. The “Crest” which was worn usually on the top of the element had the same design with two wings or [gold].”

Past Success

I went back into my files and decided to take a look at a story I wrote several years ago. This one is for adults and is set in Scotland. I still love it!!! My style has changed some, but my characters and the plot were something to be proud of!

I’m hoping to go through another edit (or three) and put it out there. This story is set in the Early Middle Ages, so no kilts. (Sorry to all you men-in-kilts fans).

I seem to follow the same themes, so this story also shows our intrepid heroine gaining self-confidence and courage as she learns more about the world and herself.

Stay tuned for the release of “MacKinnon’s Curse”!!!

It’s the First Day of Autumn

This is my favorite season! I love it when the weather turns cooler and the leaves start to turn colors. My ideal place is sitting high on a mountain in a copse of aspen trees that are turning colors.

© Creative Commons Zero (CC0)

When I was growing up, I lived high up in the mountains amongst the pine trees. I loved to lay on my back on the soft pine needles and look up at the towering trees. The smell of the pine needles would surround me and the sound of the wind rushing through the boughs was so peaceful.

I think you can see my love of the mountains, trees, and lakes in my writing. That’s the terrain around Revlin, where the palace of Carlow is located in the Kingdom of Carlow. There’s a wonderful lake with a waterfall and trees that grow nearly to the water’s edge. Too bad the awful Red Caps live on the other side of the southern border.

Anyway, back to autumn! Go outside and hike in the mountains. Be safe and look for the changing leaves. They’ll be everywhere!

A Favorite Thing

One of the things I miss when the weather is hot is a nice cup of tea. I have a favorite seller here in the U.S. ( and favorite blends. I typically use loose tea because I think it makes a better cup, plus, I love the ritual of spooning leaves into the pot and pouring water over them. The leaves unfurl and the aroma is fantastic.

I usually need to drink decaffeinated or herbal teas because my body loves to hold on to caffeine and keep me awake at night. And that interferes with my writing process! It’s in the dark when I’m relaxed and about to fall asleep, that problems with my plot are solved. I also “see” interesting scenes and those little details that can help a scene come to life. But sitting in front of my computer with a steaming cup of tea really makes the writing process work for me.

What works for you?

Have a cup with me! Sonja


I always consider it a win when a reader enjoys one of my books. That’s what happened the other day: a reader whom I truly respect told me how much she enjoyed reading my Fairies of Carlow series.

I love hearing from readers, so don’t be shy about contacting me!

You can leave a comment here, on the web site.

Or email me at

I would love to answer a question or talk to you about the stories.

Keep in touch, Sonja