A Civil War novelist’s dream come true

GELast Saturday I had the rare pleasure of attending a Civil War Reenactment on the beautiful grounds of Hale Farm and Village in Bath, Ohio. I attended with fellow Civil War enthusiast and author, Tamera Lynn Kraft, and fantasy author, Michelle Levigne. This was my first cavalry reenactment and what a difference thirty or forty horses make! The reenactors staged the first day of the 3-day Gettysburg battle, exactly 150 years ago. Those who know and love American history like I do remember the first day was mainly fought on horseback. For those who’ve never attended a living-history demonstration, this was a 2-day event that drew thousands of tourists and involved hundreds of reenactors–men, women and children–from all over the country.  They staged artillery and cavalry demonstration, showed camp life complete with apple pies baking in campfire skillets, sold handmade nineteenth century (reproduction) garb, weaponry and accoutrements, and of course had Abraham Lincoln delivering his famous address. But the best was the actual battle, fought with hundreds of dedicated historians, North and South. I was truly impressed how authentic the battle was staged. The soldiers began in the woods, moved onto the battlefield, and then ended with a rout through the village (exactly how it happened in Gettysburg). Although we all know the final result of the 3 day battle, day number one was a resounding Southern victory, with the Confederates occupying the town at day’s end. So for my southern friends and relatives….this reenactment was right up your alley! And for us Yankees, and just plain lovers of American history? A good time was had by one and all! Have a great week, and happy reading! MaryGEGE

A simpler Christmas celebration

This is the time of year so many people become buried alive with stuff-to-do, including myself. We need to remember that we cannot do it all. (not if we wish to maintain our sanity…) We need to pick and choose how we prepare for Christmas, making time for the tasks and events we really enjoy. (okay, we might have to clean house even if we don’t enjoy it…) For instance, I like writing out and sending Christmas cards, so I’ll probably finish those today. But I don’t bake and never have. But if making Christmas cookies is joyful for you, then by all means get busy. Let’s just not forget that if we keep it simple, we can spend more time enjoying the holiday. And that’s the whole point, no? By the way, if any of you are members of the ACFW book club, my book is being voted on right now for the possible book-club selection for April. Please vote for An Amish Family Reunion if you’re a book club member by Wednesday 12-14. here’s the link:


And finally, here is a lovely video Christmas card from our writing chapter, Ohio ACFW. It was put together by Michelle Levigne and she did a super job. here’s the link:


I wish everyone the most blessed of Christmases and all good things in 2012!