No Trespassing

Sometimes you see a sign. Or a fence. Or both to signal that a certain area is off limits for visitors.

The reasons are numerous. Perhaps the owner is a very private person. Or there is a danger — poisonous snakes or predator. Sometimes the danger is not visible — heed the warning.

Sometimes no sign is necessary.

These plants and sculptures sport an international, multi-lingual “no trespassing” sign. Stay away or suffer the consequences of my sharp spikes. I need space.

Space — and the ability to own land — brought many immigrants to the United States. Check out the story of one small group in the sweet, historical romance, New Dreams.


Fiddle among the Ferns

Is that right? No? Let me try again.

“Among the Fiddlehead Ferns.”

Is that better? Instead of conjuring an image of a violin player standing in a patch of ferns — we have created an image of you, dear reader, in a patch of unfurling ferns.

Translated to glass… the artist came up with this.

Green and graceful the fern unfurls in the spring air.

Can you see the tight coil unwinding as the plant draws nourishment from the soil? If you can identify the fern species the coils make a spring treat — be sure to cook — and have been eaten by numerous generations.

Alas — the glass will only remain in the public garden for a limited time. I do hope I can pay another visit before the exhibit ends.

No ferns cooked by the immigrants in New Dreams, a sweet historical romance. I wonder if some of the native-born in fictional Elm Ridge harvested the treat in early spring.

More book information here:


Please Pass the…

Gorgeous! Huge! Splendid!

I can see it now. This year — these giant, glass, cupped flowers are a hit at the public garden.

A few years from now — will we find the design copied in snack bowls at the local big box store?

I can see it at the outdoor party now. Please pass me the red bowl — the snack mix is delicious. Oh, you have mixed nuts? In the blue bowl. How delightful. The bright dishes liven up the party.

Parties can be held for many occasions. In Comfort Zone, a sweet romance, Janet holds an engagement party for her daughter and soon-to-be-son-in-law. How is she to know that his uncle is the intriguing HVAC customer? More book information here:


Unlikely Companions

Hey! Toss me that chunk of wood. No need to worry if your aim’s not perfect. Wood’s sturdy — only breaks when you work at it.

Careful! Hand, don’t toss, that piece of glass. We break it — we’ll have a mess and a half to clean up. Never mind the explaining.

Glass and wood. Wood and glass. Not the mostly likely pair — unless you think about a window. Or art.

Glass and wood together make this dramatic outdoor feature. Logs supply a sturdy base and a rustic feel. The straight glass — reeds — according to the sculpture title add a touch of wonder and delicacy. The color, in case you wonder, is given by the metal neodymium. (Yes, metals are often used to color glass.)

Humans sometimes come together in pairs as different as wood and glass. Take, for example, a woman who is retired military, busy with a satisfying career, and living near a loving extended family. Would you ever expect her to make the acquaintance — let alone more — of a semi-reclusive millionaire with an attitude of toleration, not enjoyment, from immediate family? Find their story in Morning Tryst, a sweet romance available at major on-line retailers. Click here to learn more:


Garden Greeter

Welcome to the Missouri Botanical Garden, 2023 edition.

The “WOW” moments start before you exit the glass doors into the grounds. I knew the glass exhibit would be good — and it did not disappoint.

The artist named this “Vivid Lime Icicle Tower”

I certainly won’t dispute the color. And it’s certainly a tower. But this viewer, and I’m thinking many others, find a resemblance to other things in life. Can you see hints of a barrel cactus? A bottle brush?

Books, like art, let you use your imagination to complete the image. Test your mind with a sweet romance set in fictional place more than a century in the past with New Dreams. Can you see, hear, smell, and taste the people and items presented on the page?

I’m getting hungry for a fresh-baked cinnamon bun.


Welcome Water

Portions of the western United States are sparse on water sources. Early travelers planned journeys to include as many evening stops near water sources as possible.

After all, the oxen and horses included in a wagon train needed a good drink after a hard day’s work. The humans appreciated water for cooking and washing. And I imagine more than one prayer for the water to be clear and sweet rather than alkaline and sour.

After the stone is removed from his boot, do you think the cowboy, or traveler, will find relief in a cool stream? Will he check the horse for stones in his shoes?

This statue raises many questions. What’s the horse thinking? How much longer is the journey? Where are they headed? Why?

The immigrants in NEW DREAMS made a long journey involving much water — much of it unfit to drink. Check out the sweet romance with a cool beverage within reach.

Kindle link:


Behold the Horseman!

Equestrian statues have been popular for generations. I’ve never been able to remember for more than a minute the meaning behind how many and which of the horse’s feet are on the ground. Died in battle? Wounded in battle? Died of old age many years later?

However, I appreciate the way this animal has a hint of forward motion.

The king riding forth with a mixture of centuries in his dress and accessories did not prevent a namesake city from using this image. You’ll find it near the entrance to the art museum. With free admission to all except the special exhibits, this is a great place to introduce children (and others with short attention spans) to the world of fine art.

Not familiar with the flyover cities of the Midwest? Books can cure that. Starting with a sweet romance is a good choice. COMFORT ZONE, featuring a mature couple is an even better choice to this author.

Kindle link:


Sleek Swimmers

One of the many things I appreciate when walking at the Missouri Botanical Garden, is the pleasant little surprises when you take one of the less often traveled paths.

Bonus if a bench is in a strategic spot.

Playful otters, even the sculptured ones, look sleek and cool in their pool on a hot summer day.

Have you had a rough week? Plop yourself down on a bench. Close your eyes and listen to the fountain gurgle and splash. Then blink back to reality and enjoy the representation of some of nature’s playful creatures.

There — did you feel it? Tension just slipped off my shoulders. Ohh — a bird came to visit and carried away a worry. Take a nice, deep breath of garden-scented air. Nice earth undertones. Light, sweet blossoms.

I think I’m ready now. Time to pull the book from my tote bag and transport myself to another time and place while my body sheds heavy, daily burdens and selects some sweet, light hopes.

Suggestion for your tote bag — romance. A sweet read is “Morning Tryst”



Fashionable Fountain

Hot weather. Splashing water. Relief is standing near the fountain. Or on the splash pad.

One summer, not so many years ago, a glass and metal fashion show took over this space at the Missouri Botanical Garden.

Sparkling in the sunshine, the models appear to be standing on the tips of the fountain.

Oooo — cool feet.

If you could dance on the tips of a fountain, what would you sing? Would you join hands and dance? What instruments do you want in the band?

In “Stare Down” a romance with a touch of suspense, the hero takes his mother to the botanical garden. Always something beautiful to see and a shady place to read a book.

Stare Down on Kindle:


Welcome to my City

Pre-pandemic (I expect many of us will divide our lives by this event), I had decided that the time was right for me to have EXPERIENCES rather than collect THINGS.

Therefore, on a spring afternoon, I boarded an airplane, crossed my fingers my luggage took the same flight, and became an international traveler. I’m not counting Canada or Mexico for the purposes of this blog — they are fine countries and I enjoyed my time in each — that’s for another day.

Culture shock — to a person raised rural, currently living in a modest size city, and never visiting anything larger than Chicago — London is huge. No matter how many history, fiction, or guidebooks you consult, the trip from airport to hotel introduced me to more of — everything — than I expected.

Trafalgar Square

On an independent adventure my first afternoon, I consulted the map, asked a few questions at hotel and underground station. Then I “followed the herd”. It’s memorable to emerge into rainy, spring air and be greeting by this fellow. “Welcome. My friends and I will guard this pillar. No funny stuff tolerated.”

Have you had a memorable sculpture encounter?