Thursday, January 26, 2012

Celia Yeary, A Spunky, Busy, Senior Author With Radishes on Her Mind

The Night of the Radishes

I'll bet you're just dying to know what The Night of the Radishes is all about. Before I get there, though, I'd like to say I'm a Senior and proud of it. I don't even have to ask for a Senior discount anywhere--the sweet clerks just automatically give it to me.
As I gradually turned into a Senior, I learned to play golf, and while I'd love to tell you all about that adventure, many have already heard my story. Our traveling became the most exciting event we did about twice a year. We traveled back and forth over the ocean on several tours, took a few nice long, cruises, toured Canada a couple of times, and finally began to see the good ol' USA.
Then we became intrigued with Mexico and made four trips on a tour bus down into the interior of Mexico, where the area and the people are more like a foreign country than they are on the Texas-Mexico border. It was quiet down there, historic, quaint, beautiful, and charming. The people were always polite, and for the most part the villages and cities were quite clean.
Our last trip down there was three years ago at Christmas. Our anniversary is near Christmas, and so to celebrate our 50th we traveled by tour bus to Oaxaca, Mexico, a city of half a million set in the beautiful Sierra Madre Mountains.
On Christmas Eve, our tour guide took us to the center of Oaxaca to view the spectacular Night of the Radishes. She warned us, "Senoras and Senors, Oaxaca has one half a million residents, and tonight you will see all of them!" She laughed. Well, let me tell it, it was a crowd of epic proportions at the huge double squares, located corner to corner.

A contest was held to display creations carved completely from giant radishes. We crept along in the line to study each display. I was truly amazed. The winners would receive a cash award, and so there were many entries, all vying for that special prize. Oaxaca is a poor state for the most part.

In this photo, Mexican Policia were loading this gorgeous, specially made motorcycle someone had parked on the square. It broke no laws, but the police loaded it anyway. I asked Sophia, our guide what they were taking it. She said, they will present it to someone higher up as a gift. Aha.

As a Spunky Senior, I climbed a pyramid. I do admit it was not a tall pyramid, but at least I did it. The hard part was that the steps were very narrow, so that I had to turn my foot sideways, or just stand on my tip-toes. Also each step was about two feet tall. I really sort of crawled up, but at least I did it.
Thank you for joining me here today, and thank you, Morgan.
Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas
Please welcome Celia Yeary to Spunky Senior Authors & Talents. Thanks for sharing with us today, Celia.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Spunky Senior Terry Palardy Doesn't Let MS Get Her Down

Terry Palardy

I just discovered your blog a few weeks ago, and love the page I read. I'm fairly new at blogging, having only started at the end of November - but am enjoying it, and invite you to view mine (link below). I'm not unfamiliar with technology, and everything I know I have learned primarily from my young students, and my son.

Terry Palardy, with son, Rob, and husband, Rick,
at Rob's Paramedic Graduation.
  Bless my son. Twenty years ago, I sat at the table of a faculty meeting, hearing the principal announce that we would be going on line, and would need a webmaster to host our school's page in the district’s new website. We all looked at each other blankly. After an awkward minute, the principal looked at me and said "Terry, would you be able to do this? … with your son's coaching, of course?"  My son, like many of his peers, was more than adept at computers, seeming intuitively to anticipate and grasp each new developmental change in technology. And so I began, with Rob's help. I deposited the stipend into his college fund account. We did that together for awhile, until another teacher with skills joined us, and eventually took that over.

Terry Palardy with Husband, Rick, at
an MS Walk Last Spring

I just retired this past June, after a thirty year career in public education. I would have taught longer, but a belated diagnosis of multiple sclerosis took me out two years earlier than I'd wished. I began my new career as a writer by gathering up essays that I'd written for years prior, and self-publishing a book. I next gathered up the many poems I'd written for family members and published another, and then another teaching collection, and then another poetry collection, and then a small town commentary collection, and then I was ready to write the story of my diagnosis.
With those steps behind me, I am ready to start writing now purely for the joy of writing, and am planning a few more books for this winter. I've been invited to be the featured author for our small town library's new venture, a Local Author's Program, and I'll be speaking to an audience in February, both about my books and about becoming a self-published author. 

I look forward to reading more of your blog, Morgan, and joining you here now and again.

I've written books about Teaching, Poetry, Georgetown and Multiple Sclerosis.
See my Author Page at Amazon, where I'm published under my full name:Terry Crawford Palardy -

Please welcome Terry Crawford Palardy to Spunky Senior Authors and Talents!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Spunky Senior Liz Flaherty Sews Up Romances and Quilts

Liz Flaherty

Thanks so much for having me here. I never think of myself as “spunky,” but I do feel empowered by my age, my experience, the people and things I love, so maybe that’s the same thing.

I have a new book out. ONE MORE SUMMER, from Carina Press, is the book of my heart. Of the gazillion manuscripts I’ve started and the considerably fewer I’ve finished, it is the one I’ve never let go. Grace and Dillon are as real to me as nearly anyone I know. I hope they touch you in the same way. At the bottom of this blog, I’ll have buy links and a link to my website and to the site where I blog with some writer friends. There, that’s out of the way.

What do you say we talk about quilts?

When I retired from the post office in February, I made my plans public. I was going to write a lot—I have. I was going volunteer a lot—I haven’t. I was going to lose weight—I have. I was going to travel more—I have. And I was going to make a bed-size quilt for each of the Magnificent Seven, my grandkids.

Wait a minute, was I nuts? I didn’t even know how to make a quilt. While it was true I liked to sew, and hopefully I’d have a little more time, I certainly couldn’t…seven?

Well. I started easy, with a Brick Road in vibrant colors for my oldest granddaughter, got a little more intricate on each of the next three, then started the fifth. A Morning Star. I bought the fabric in a shop 200 miles away because when I looked at it, I thought of the 9-year-old who would get the next quilt. I bought a little extra fabric…you know, just in case.

The Morning Star has triangles. I never thought of triangles as being particularly evil once I finally passed geometry, but I have decided they’re really spawns of Satan. I read all kinds of books, tutorials, and blogs on how to cut and sew triangles so that voila!—they become beautiful star points. But actually triangles stretch. They go all catawampus just when you think you have them exactly right. They don’t know the meaning of the precise quarter-inch that seams in quilts are supposed to be. They are…well, I already said it—they’re just flat-out evil.

I had to cut seven million of them for the twin-size quilt I’m working on. The pattern said it was something like 254, but I’m sure that’s wrong. I worked on it through Thanksgiving, Christmas, and the launch week of ONE MORE SUMMER. Unlike when I made the 9-year-old’s mother’s wedding dress, I didn’t resort to tears or wine…well, maybe a glass here and there, but my language did get a little shocking.

This week, I started sewing the blocks together. Oh, my. Those nasty little triangles really are starting to work out. The quilt’s going to look great. And even if it didn’t, that would be okay. That’s something I’ve learned in this short year of retirement, that “great” is relative. If an okay quilt is wrapped around a grandkid, it’s automatically great.

And I’ve learned that those quilts, no matter how easy—not that any of them have been easy for me—or difficult, claim places in the heart just like books do.

I hope you have stories, people, and things that fill the places in your heart, too. Here's the links for  ONE MORE SUMMER (I hope you like it) and where you can find me. Thanks for stopping by!

I’d love to have you visit my website or where I hang out with some of my best writer friends.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Spunky Morgan Mandel Tours About Forever Young: Blessing or Curse

Morgan Mandel Way Back When
  I'm a senior, therefore I'm old. My figure, my health, and memory aren't quite the same as they used to be. When I found a photo at home of what I used to look like, my husband even asked if it was me. Well, he knew me way back then, but when you see the same person day in and day out, it's hard to remember what they used to look like.

Sometimes I like being this old. Other times, I wish there were some way to turn back the clock. Such meanderings in my mind led me to write Forever Young: Blessing or Curse, where I allow a 55 year old to make the choice to take a daily pill to spin her back to 24 and stay there. Of course, all is not rosy when she makes her choice.

If you want to know what happens, this book is available on Kindle,Smashwords, and other ebook ventues. If you don't see it on Nook, it will be there shortly. It takes a few weeks for the channels to kick in.  Later it will go into print.

Forever Young: Blessing or Curse
by Morgan Mandel
 Today is the launch of my Blog Book Tour promoting my book, which is partly based on wishful thinking, but much more than that. If you'd like to come along to the next stop, it will be on Monday, January 9, at The topic will be Them Bones, Them Bones!

My entire Blog Book Tour Schedule can be found in the sidebar at
I hope to see some of you follow along to one or more. Many senior topics will be discussed.

Thanks, Gang,
Morgan Mandel -