What you will find here

This is a place to examine plans filled with hope; plans which promise a refuge from chaos; plans which will shape our futures. Veterans with and without PTSD, Pentecostal Presbyterians, Adjudicated Youth, and Artists-Musicians-Writers: I write what I know. ~~~ Evelyn

Thursday, April 17, 2014

HERBED CARROTS WITH GREEN GRAPES



1 ½ pounds carrots

½ tsp salt

1 tsp basil

½ cup butter/margarine

1 small clove garlic, crushed

½ tsp thyme

¼ tsp celery salt

1 cup seedless grapes

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1/8 tsp salt

Few grains of pepper

Wash and pare carrots; cut into 3x1/4 inch strips. Put carrots into saucepan; add salt, basil and enough boiling water to steam. Cook covered for 12 to 15 minutes or until carrots are crisp-tender. Melt butter; add garlic, thyme and celery salt. Set aside. Remove carrots from heat; add grapes. Let stand covered for 1 to 2 minutes; drain off liquid. Stir lemon juice into seasoned butter; pour over carrots. Season with salt & pepper; toss mixture gently. Serve immediately. Yield: 6-8 servings.

(Mrs. Robert A. Riffenburg, Warfield, VA © Southern Living 1968)



Gluten-free and Vegetarian/Vegan Recipes

To meet my needs of being “gluten-free”, there are no ingredients that have wheat in them. Since one out of one-hundred people now have problems with the way the United States processes their foods, there are plenty of brands which are marked GF Gluten-free. However, read all the way around the label and determine if there might be traces of wheat or if the product was processed in a plant or on machinery that also handles wheat. (These statements are usually NOT found near the list of ingredients.) If this is the case and you are gluten-sensitive or have a wheat-toxicity, don’t use it!

I also deleted recipes which called for hidden gluten – like shrimp, frozen mangoes and parsnips.

Vegetarian foods allow the use of milk, honey, eggs, and other non-kill animal products; vegans do not. I have endeavored to post only recipes with vegan-appropriate ingredients. If I really liked something, though, that was vegetarian rather than vegan, I will note it.

Whenever possible, use non-GMO products (non-genetically modified).  If you think gmo’s are ok for you, you haven’t read any science fiction books, let alone Charles Darwin.

These recipes are not an attempt to substitute wheat or animal ingredients with something else. These recipes are “naturally” or originally gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Excerpt from Bedina's War - Tinker's Damn Chapter Two

The Spa’Lab Walking Dead

First-Chief Engineer Quartz Julian surveyed the bay. “Don’t open

anything unless you check it for booby traps!” he growled at his crew.

“Hey Chief, maybe we should scratch away some of her paint —

see if it’s gold underneath!”

“Yarrow, keep your mind on survival, not salvage.” Julian shook his

head. Turn his back long enough and Yarrow and his crew would have

the planking unscrewed, searching for hidden treasure. Salvagers were

straight out of romantic legends to these salts. More like bloody pirates,



Julian thought.

“Chief, over here.” Second-Chief Elliot Joaquin Sebastiana waved

at him and drew a mask over her face. She stood a head shorter and

weighed a good deal more than Julian. She had a pear shaped body,

with ample hips. She was strong and logical and his equal when it came

to engineering skills. She was also Julian’s friend.

He drew on his own mask and peered into the darkened alcove

behind Sebastiana. “What is that stench?”

“The door was marked Trash and the bay door was timed to open



in another three movietimes. Everything in here would have been

spaced.”

Julian cocked his head and stooped to enter the small alcove. He

switched on his light stick. Six people squatted in the debris. They were

the size of children from his home planet, Orchidea. They had their

arms crossed over their bent knees. Their naked skin was smeared with

filth. Their eyes blinked instinctively in the light, but they registered no

other response.

“They all have red hair and blue eyes, Chief,” Sebastiana whispered

in a hushed awe.
 

 
 
 
 
 

 
“Looks that way.” Julian knelt in front of a woman about his age.

She did not flinch when he brought the light close to her face. She

hummed vacantly.

“What’s wrong with them?”

“You mean besides sitting in their own filth for two days?” Julian

stomped out of the alcove and returned with a hose. He turned a nozzle

and water gushed out. He drenched the six bodies, but they barely

responded. Rather than trying to protect themselves from the biting

spray, they opened their mouths and swallowed in gulps.

When the stench had been washed away sufficiently to remove his

mask, he turned off the flow. “Sebastiana, go get the medic. Tell her to

bring six togas. And Sebastiana, keep this quiet. The last thing I need is

for my crew to get spooked about having Spa’Labs aboard.”

“My grand-fa was a Spa’Lab, Chief.” Sebastiana swallowed and

squared her shoulders.

“Then you know some of the rumors aren’t true.” Julian planted his

fists on his slender hips and glared into the dripping trash bay.

“They’re tranked, aren’t they? They’re Spa’Lab Walking Dead.”

“If you’re planning to gab the day away, I’ll put you on report and

find someone who will follow orders,” Julian said evenly.

ttttt

Lonicera was walking. She was walking and walking and walking.

She felt the ship humming against the soles of her feet. The ship was

healthy. She was a stubborn ship, too. Lonicera could feel this through

and through, from the hum of her engines and the vibration of her

hull spaces and the sway of her bulkheads and the way she breasted the

fabric of space as she sailed. Lonicera walked the ship’s corridors and

hummed along with her engines.

ttttt

“This is beyond what I can heal, Captain.” The Tinker’s Damn’s



Chief Medical Officer Poplaris Lan-Chi Claire shook her head.

“Is it permanent?”

“Do you mean will they ever recover?”

The captain pursed his lips at his wife. He hated when she restated

his questions without answering him.
 



 

She noticed his expression and sighed, softening somewhat. “I

haven’t read anything to suggest they will. But I haven’t read much

about this condition. All I really know about this is based on rumors

and legends. You know the old saying, Sp’lab-kept secrets. I don’t



know if they are the way they are due to an allergic reaction to the

Harusophynite or if they really were genetically altered, like the legends

say. It may just be a self-induced trance.”

“But how do we wake them out of it?”

“Do we need to? They seem content. They can feed and take care of

themselves. They are just in their own private worlds.”

Captain Poplaris Enoch sighed. “I’ll try to find a Spa’Lab somewhere

in the fleet that can help. Until then —“

“Until then — narn’t! You’ve heard the same stories that I have.

Creeping eruption, Enoch! Your granmom told us both about the

Sp’lab Walking Dead around the campfire the first round-up we went

on. You won’t find a Spa’Lab that will talk about them or take care

of them or even acknowledge they exist. They are dead to any other

Spa’Lab.” Claire shivered. “Get them out of my sick bay! I have real

wounded that need the hammocks. We are at war.”

“What am I supposed to do with them, Claire? Throw them out

into the corridors with the rest of the refugees?”

“It’s better than being spaced. They are taking up six hammocks

that I need for salts with physical injuries. The Spa’Labs will survive or

they won’t. The Tinker’s Damn is a battleship, not a nursery.”

Enoch growled in frustration. His Tinker’s Damn used to be a



trading ship, traveling the Commonwealth, bartering for treasures,

meeting new peoples, taking on or putting off salts to maintain the

hundred or so crew the Tinker’s Damn needed to sail. Now, hardly a



battleship, she ferried fighter pilots to skirmishes and tried to keep her

hull intact. Well, you can’t get oolongs from cracked eggs as his granmom



used to say. They were at war. He walked to the comdesk and depressed

a key. “First-Chief Engineer!”

“Julian here, sir.”

“I need you in sick bay.”

“Are you ill?” Concern flowed through Julian’s warm tenor voice.
 
 
 
 




 
 
 

 
 
“No, I just need your help with our special guests.”
Excerpt from

Bedina’s War

© Evelyn Rainey

Comfort Publishing

ISBN 9781936695881

Thursday, April 10, 2014

CARROT CASSEROLE



1 1-pound bag carrots, cleaned, cut up

½ cup celery, chopped

½ cup chopped onions

1 green pepper, chopped

1 Tbsp parsley, fresh or dried

¼ cup butter/margarine

1 tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

1 tsp sugar

1 can tomato soup * check ingredients for Vegans

Boil carrots until tender; drain. Fry celery, onions, pepper and parsley in butter. Add to carrots with salt, pepper and sugar; put in casserole, cover with tomato soup. Bake for 45 minutes at 250 degrees. Yield: 6 servings.

(Rosalyn Boxley, Virginia Beach, VA © Southern Living 1968)



Gluten-free and Vegetarian/Vegan Recipes

To meet my needs of being “gluten-free”, there are no ingredients that have wheat in them. Since one out of one-hundred people now have problems with the way the United States processes their foods, there are plenty of brands which are marked GF Gluten-free. However, read all the way around the label and determine if there might be traces of wheat or if the product was processed in a plant or on machinery that also handles wheat. (These statements are usually NOT found near the list of ingredients.) If this is the case and you are gluten-sensitive or have a wheat-toxicity, don’t use it!

I also deleted recipes which called for hidden gluten – like shrimp, frozen mangoes and parsnips.

Vegetarian foods allow the use of milk, honey, eggs, and other non-kill animal products; vegans do not. I have endeavored to post only recipes with vegan-appropriate ingredients. If I really liked something, though, that was vegetarian rather than vegan, I will note it.

Whenever possible, use non-GMO products (non-genetically modified).  If you think gmo’s are ok for you, you haven’t read any science fiction books, let alone Charles Darwin.

These recipes are not an attempt to substitute wheat or animal ingredients with something else. These recipes are “naturally” or originally gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Excerpt from Minna Pegeen Chapter Two




Excerpt from

Minna Pegeen

© Evelyn Rainey

Comfort Publishing

ISBN 9781935361381

Thursday, April 3, 2014

FRESH SAUERKRAUT SALAD



(My mother makes this, although she doesn't add the carrots. It really is incredibly good!)

2 cups fresh sauerkraut, snipped and drained (not sure what they mean by ‘snipped’)

½ cup sugar

¼ cup chopped onion

½ cup chopped carrot

½ cup chopped green pepper

½ cup chopped celery

Combine sauerkraut and sugar. Let stand for 30 minutes. Add remaining ingredients; refrigerate overnight. This salad will keep and will make its own dressing. Yield: 8 servings.

(Mrs. Ted McDonald, Newport News, VA © Southern Living 1968)



Gluten-free and Vegetarian/Vegan Recipes

To meet my needs of being “gluten-free”, there are no ingredients that have wheat in them. Since one out of one-hundred people now have problems with the way the United States processes their foods, there are plenty of brands which are marked GF Gluten-free. However, read all the way around the label and determine if there might be traces of wheat or if the product was processed in a plant or on machinery that also handles wheat. (These statements are usually NOT found near the list of ingredients.) If this is the case and you are gluten-sensitive or have a wheat-toxicity, don’t use it!

I also deleted recipes which called for hidden gluten – like shrimp, frozen mangoes and parsnips.

Vegetarian foods allow the use of milk, honey, eggs, and other non-kill animal products; vegans do not. I have endeavored to post only recipes with vegan-appropriate ingredients. If I really liked something, though, that was vegetarian rather than vegan, I will note it.

Whenever possible, use non-GMO products (non-genetically modified).  If you think gmo’s are ok for you, you haven’t read any science fiction books, let alone Charles Darwin.

These recipes are not an attempt to substitute wheat or animal ingredients with something else. These recipes are “naturally” or originally gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Excerpt from Perky's Chapter Two



April 9

 

“What is your full name and occupation?” Jack White the detective sat with me in the café. His sandy blonde hair buzzed severely short, made his green eyes seem incongruously innocent. He had a notebook out, and an uncapped pen at the ready. He looked to be about seventeen and had nicked his chin shaving.

“Madison Jefferson. I’m a Floor Ambassador here at Percival’s Books & Gifts. I’m also a Commissioned Officer.”

“I served four years myself. In which branch of the service were you?” The detective slurped his coffee and then grimaced.

“No, not in the service, here at Perky’s.”

He glared into the coffee and then pushed his mug away in disgust. “What is your date of birth?”

“June 17, 1980.”

“And so you’re on leave from the Navy and work here part-time?”

“No, I work here full-time. Well, thirty-nine hours, so it’s not considered full-time as far as benefits go. But I’m not in the Navy.”

“You just told me you are a commissioned officer. Are you rescinding that now?”

“I’m not rescinding anything.”

The young man reached to the coffee and tapped the mug with his pen. It made a clink sound. He repeated that clink clink clink and smiled. “Ms. Jefferson, what month were you born?”

“I was born in June. June 19, 1962.”

He blinked at me. I smiled.

“And when you’re not here at Perky’s, you work in the commissary.”

I took a deep breath, hoping against hope that my disability, which is sort of like stuttering, didn’t kick in. It does that when I’m nervous or annoyed. So I took another deep breath. “I’m a commissioned officer here at Perky’s. It’s less than a manager but more than a floor ambassador.”

“Like a Red Badge at Books-a-Million.”

“I guess so.”

“My mother was a Red Badge. But they don’t have those any more.”

“But we do.”

“Hmmm. When did you say you were born?” Jack wrote something on his little notepad and turned it face down on the table.

“May 17, 1931.”

He squinted at me.

“Would you like some more coffee, sir?”

“No, thank you.” He picked up the mug and peered at the viscous liquid. “This is really nasty.”

“The absolute worst coffee ever,” I agreed. Of course, I didn’t add that it was still coming from the last pot that the late Mrs. Abercrombie had brewed. (Mrs. A being the body found in aisle seventeen three days earlier.)

“How long did you know the deceased?”

“I didn’t know the deceased. You can’t get to know dead people. Something about a lack of communication. Well,” I stopped to correct myself and tell Jack White about Sam Wayne. Sam talks to dead people. Sam insists that the only reason the dead speak to him is that his name sounds like the Gaelic (aka Wiccan) name for Halloween. I had never figured out what other reasons there might be—like that made a difference. Jack’s eyes were squinting—I was taking too long to answer his question about how well I knew the deceased. I made a definite decision not to tell the detective about Sam Wayne. “I knew Mrs. Abercrombie for the five years I’ve worked here.”

“And what impression did you have of her?” He leaned forward, a mouse about to pounce on a rabid wolf.

“That she made the worst coffee I’ve ever had in my entire life. When were you born?” I asked calmly.

“August 29, 1989. Hey, I’m supposed to ask that!”

“OK, Detective White, for the third time, this is the way it happened. A customer asked me about a werewolf book and then made a comment about the inappropriateness of the werewolf display. I went to check on it and discovered the remains of a human body, which were later identified as belonging to our café manager, Mrs. Abercrombie. You police came and taped off the entire New Age section and took the names of everyone in the store. Then you shut us down for the entire day yesterday, and none of us got paid. And then you came back today. Your officers are blocking the doors, intimidating our customers and eating all the free samples.”

“They’re,” he interrupted, looking gray. “They’re not with me. Not with the police. They’re a different branch of law enforcement.”

“What do you mean—they’re not police. Look at them! They scream law-enforcement.”

“How?” he growled.

“Black suit and tie. Shades. Muscles that are making our teen-age customers drool.”

White snorted, adjusted his tie and smiled. “This is a Beall’s Outlet tie my mom bought because it had a lavender dot on it. My suit is from the Salvation Army. I have had these shoes since my confirmation in the ninth grade. They are not with the city’s police department.”

One of the previously described men stomped up to the table and laid a ream of paper in front of White. “Sir, background info on the last sixty-two customers to enter the store.” He saluted and marched back to his position by the front double doors.

White glanced up at me and clinked the mug a few more times. “You were saying, about the murder?”

Enjoying White’s embarrassment, I said, “I don’t know what Mrs. Abercrombie died of, nor when, nor why. All I know about the lady is that she made really bad coffee and that something ripped her to shreds.”

The young man licked his top lip with the tip of his tongue while he wrote rapidly in the notebook. “So you’ve worked here a long time. Why did you get a job here in the first place?”

“I came in to—because I needed information about—about something I’d discovered in a book.” I took a deep calming breath, hoping my nervousness wouldn’t set off my disability. I didn’t think the detective would react well if I sat babbling in front of him while he questioned me about a murder. “And I met Lilly. And the next thing I knew, I was strapping on an apron and I’ve been here ever since.”

“Do you like working here?”

I smiled. “It has its moments.”


Excerpt from

Perky’s Books and Gifts

© Evelyn Rainey 2013

Bedlam Press

ISBN 9781939065377

Friday, March 28, 2014

Excerpt from Possum Playing Poker Chapter Two


            Josh shook hands with Chase and Storms and climbed back into his car.  He followed me into town and parked behind me in my driveway.

            "Miss Olson, I think we need to talk."

            "Do you like barbecue?"

            "No, ma'am, I hate it."

            "How about Chinese?"

            "Miss Olson, could I just talk to you?"

            "No, you can talk to me and buy me dinner.  I'll be right out."

            I locked the door behind me and ran into my bedroom.  I didn't have too many nice dresses, but I did have one with a lace collar and pearl buttons that looked as Victorian as rayon can get.  I had to search for my only pair of hose.  (I usually wear socks and sneakers with everything.)  Lipstick and a quick struggle with my hairbrush and I returned to the front door where Josh Dylan, FBI was waiting.

            I couldn't find my keys.

            Josh tapped on the door and jangled the missing keys.

            "Second time you've lost them this week, ma'am."

            "Somewhere in the universe is seven sets of keys and about a thousand socks, and God knows what else I'm missing because I've forgotten it's gone."

            "Yes, ma'am."  There was no humor in his reply.

            I excused myself to the ladies' room just as Wan Lee came toward us with menus.  I waited until Josh had been seated and Wan left before I joined him.

            "I take order now?"  Wan's son David asked.

            "David, we are not tourists, so don’t try that atrocious pig-grammar on us!  I have taught you better than that."

            "Miss Olson!"  Terror oozed from every pore.  David turned and raced back into the kitchen only to return in moments, cowering behind his father.

            "Miss Olson, Golden Corral has a special on their steak and shrimp today!"

            "She can't go to Golden Corral anymore, Pop,” David whispered loudly.

            Josh lifted an eyebrow.

            "It was just a misunderstanding,” I explained, studying my menu.

            "Misunderstanding between the hood light over the salad bar and the pickle tongs,” David laughed.

            Josh covered a smile with his hand.

            "The Chalet Monet serves very romantic dinners," Wan suggested.

            "Oh, no!"  Mrs. Bauer commented from the next table.  "Chuck Monet said he'd have her arrested if she ever entered his restaurant again."

            Josh, Wan, and David looked at me questioningly.

            "I must admit, I have since learned that escargot is not on the endangered species list."  I calmly turned the page in my menu.

            "King's Cuisine serves liver and onions on Saturdays."  Wan smiled wistfully.

            "No, don't send her there!  That's right next to a pawn shop,” Mr. Prescott scolded from a table to our right.

            "Oh, I had forgotten about that."  Wan shook his head in despair.

            "Forgotten?"  Josh asked, folding his hands in front of him.

            "They sell guns at pawn shops,” Mr. Prescott nodded sagely.

            Josh pressed his fingertips into his eyelids and sighed deeply.

            "Barbecue Buddies is just down the road,” Miss Ruth Wellington's ancient voice boomed from a table behind us.

            We looked at each other.  Wan looked to the tables on his right; David looked to the tables on his left.  I turned around and gazed at the people behind us.  No one offered a rebuttal.

            "I --” Josh cleared his throat and started again.  "I don't like barbecue."

            "We'll have the Volcano Appetizers."

            "No, Miss Olson.  After your last visit, the Fire Marshall made me take it off the menu,” Mr. Lee said politely.

            "I like the new curtains."

            "They match the new wallpaper, Miss Olson."

            I drew a deep, steady breath.

            "We'll have two empress chickens, egg rolls, and wanton soups."  Josh's voice rumbled across the room.

            “Would you like beer with that?” Wan offered.

            “Mr. Lee, you know I am too young to drink!”  I snapped indignantly.

            Josh snorted.

            “What?”  I blinked and tilted my head as if I couldn’t have heard Josh correctly.

            He sighed and lowered his voice.  “Ma’am, I don’t mean to be rude or anything, but I’ve read over your vita.  You’re two years older than me and I’ve been able to drink for two decades.”

            I sniffed.  It usually worked on second graders, but Josh was far from that.  “If you read my vital statistics, you would have noticed my birth date:  February 29.  Therefore, I am barely a decade old.  Far too young to be served alcoholic beverages.”

            “The beer was not for you, Ms. Olson.  I will die a slow death cursing my ancestors before I would serve you beer.”  Wan Lee squared his shoulders bravely.

"We'll have two empress chickens, egg rolls, wanton soup, and a pot of hot tea."  Josh's voice rumbled across the room.

            "Hot tea?"  Mr. Lee looked deeply into Josh's eyes.

            "A pot of hot tea,” Josh repeated.

            Mr. Lee nodded in defeat and left.



Excerpt from

Possum Playing Poker

© Evelyn Rainey

Available for publication.