By: judithdisalvo | June 16, 2017

My father wasn’t perfect but he was the perfect father for me. Carl DiSalvo was religious, conservative, and strict. I wasn’t allowed to wear makeup or date until I was 16-years-old. Little did he know, my unconventional, bohemian, fun-loving mom helped me circle those issues so I could avoid being a social Neanderthal in high school. I spent nights out on the weekends allot! I felt like Dad was trying to prepare me for the convent instead of the business he would one day want me to help run. He was also very generous and kind. He didn’t say “I love you” much but his actions spoke volumes.

After he served his country in WWII as a flight engineer, my dad began his career as a used car salesman, eventually partnered with the owner, then bo...

By: judithdisalvo | March 14, 2017

The latest issue of Virtuoso Life Magazine (March/April 2017) featured me in their “Why I Travel” article. I’m quoted as saying, “It (traveling) teaches me about who I am. Sometimes you need to get a little lost to find yourself.”

Since this is a blog about my writing adventures, I venture to say the quote also applies to the characters I write about. Getting a little lost, then finding their way with help from friends, is a good template for a compelling story. Could the quest to find our way lie in our DNA or maybe our primal brain?

Santa Fe's Baldy Mountain
View of Santa Fe's Baldy Mountain

My last post was about the passing of my mother. For the last half year, she lived here on our farm with Tim and me. Upon her passing, home for me became a sad place and so, for a month or so, I took off on a re...

By: Margaret | January 03, 2017

My mom led a dual life, half semi-traditional and the other half very avant-garde. Her story is worthy of a book, one I might just be spurred to write next. Maybe it will be called “June Babe,” the name her close friends called her when she was younger. It suited her, in her Levi jeans, smoking cigarettes she said she never inhaled—ha! She drove us to school everyday in her sporty AMC Javelin with the Pierre Cardin interior and I have got to tell you, it was a real trick getting out of the back seat of that car even when I was 10-years-old! Cool is one thing but there’s something to be said for comfort. Lucky for us back-seat passengers, she decided 4-wheel drive was more her speed. Her Jeep Liberty is still parked next to her house. Later...

By: PenPower | December 02, 2016

Robins Nest on the Katy Trail
Robins Nest on the Katy Trail

I have lived in Defiance, Missouri for a few years, appreciate the natural beauty and have met some fine people, mostly at the local watering hole,  The Roadhouse. Yet recently, with the launch of my first novel, I’ve discovered a very special local merchant community. They have tucked me and First Rodeo  under their wing. Robin White at Robins Nest (I know—wings, bird,  robins, angels —it’s for real) has carried First Rodeo for weeks now. Their praise has sold countless books.     Now, the Distillery of Defiance has launched their new and delicious vodka, "Judgment Tree," and has partnered with me! How fun could that be? It makes sense if you have read First Rodeo. Kate, the heroine loves her martinis. We'll call these wildly e...

By: PenPower | November 10, 2016

Is Old Man Winter asleep at the wheel? You’d never guess that Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away. The warm weather and James, the infamous Viking Gardener here at Ravens Ridge, have kept us in the green, growing beautiful organic lettuce, arugula, Kale, mustard greens and even tomatoes! Lucky for you, he will be at this season’s last Wine Country Market on Sunday, November 13th at the Trail Smokehouse.


This fun, stress free, open air shopping experience offers local food, crafts, artisans and gifts. You will find everything you need and then some for your Thanksgiving feast (minus a turkey) including green beans and sweet potatoes.

My good friend Trish Perkins will be there offering her incredible sauces, salsas and jams, perfect for ...

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