Being Home

Summer–my favorite season–is winding down. We’re approaching Mabon, the Autumn Equinox. With that fleeting balance of day and night, most harvesting’s done. My tomatoes sure are. My garden’s got the late summer shabbies though there are some pretty fabulous spots and corners of color and bloom still. Before much longer, I’ll be thinking about making soups, pulling on sweaters and boots.

A little fall color.
Brilliant pots.
Happy flowers.
Thriving nasturtium

So, I for one, am holding tight to these last wonderfully warm days.

We had a busy summer around here. Lots of work, lots of travel. And we capped it off with our annual summer party.

That meant the weekend after we returned from France, we had party prep to deal with (and that’s after unpacking, putting awaying, nose to the grindstoning on the book).

While Jason and BW spent hours on a rainy Saturday setting up outside–awnings, tables, chairs, food stations–Kat and I spent hours inside (with some assist from our Sarah) cooking, baking, chopping, stirring. I think, in one day, we made up for our couple of weeks on holiday with no cooking involved.

Kat brought France back by making the amazing dessert we call pie-cream-pie. Labor intensive, creative and absolutely delicious.

Pie-cream-pie a la Kat.
Fruit salad in Kat’s carved watermelon.

Fortunately, the rainy Saturday turned into a pretty Sunday for the party. Lots of people, lots of food and drink. And that’s a wrap for another summer.

With that wrap, the kids head back to school. Kayla’s back in cross-country training. Run, Kayla! And Logan grew TWO inches while we were in France. We’re now eye-to-eye.

And at last, one completely at-home weekend follows. Nowhere we need to go. BW and I both spent it doing chores around here. It felt wonderful to put the house and yard back in order. But that short spurt of–for me–domestic bliss–led up to this past weekend’s signing at Turn The Page.

I knew going in this would be a long one. We were lucky to host three writers (and personal friends) who rarely come to our area. Our stellar line-up included–in alpha order: Jayne Ann Krentz, Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Susan Wiggs. A nice bonus for me to be able to catch up with all of them. And since some 360 readers–give or take–came through the doors, I wasn’t wrong about the long one. Five and a half hours rates as long–for the writers and the readers.

Pre-signing pano
Nora has readers of every age.
Bottom row: Alisha Rai, Jayne Ann Krentz, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Nora.
Middle row: Laura Treacey Bentley, Susan Wiggs, Kimberly Kincaid
Top: John Bede

Thanks to all who came to sign, to buy books, to be there, for their patience and fortitude.

Today, it’s warm and sunny–but I see one of the poplar trees out my window going yellow with September. I’ve tidied my house, done my workout (not easy to drag my butt out to my gym today!), and after I write this, I’m going to do exactly nothing for the rest of the day.

I want to add to anyone who’s had their lives and homes disrupted by Harvey or Irma, you’re all in my thoughts. I’ve been lighting candles for you, and will light one today before my nothing begins.


Note from Laura:  I came back from the beach to get to the signing. One last sunrise to hold me over until next year:

And in this week’s #randomkatness:

“May I help you?”

22 thoughts on “Being Home”

  1. I had the best time yesterday at the book signing. Meeting all of the authors and see friends from Pa. You and the staff always rock the book signing. Thank you for doing them see you again in October.

  2. Laura, your beach photos are breathtaking. I’m a beach lover, & I love them all- I can’t pick a favorite. As to Nora, I love that animal print dress you are wearing for the book signing. It’s tres chic.

  3. Nora – thank you for being so faithful staying in touch with your many fans. Your books continue to delight this reader and many are read over and over. I’m always looking forward to the next grand adventure and continuing to follow Eve and Roarke as they keep cleaning up the future NYC. I always fall in love with the characters you create in that marvelous mind of yours, and they stay with me, whether human or animal. Enjoy Mabon – it’s a fall day in the Pacific Northwest today so change is here.

  4. Nora, I have been a fan from the first (Irish Thoroughbred). I met you once at a signing (to many years ago). I enjoy your books, both as NR and JDR. Please keep up the great storytelling.

    I wish you a Blessed Mabon.

    Deirdre Abbott

  5. Laura, I love the pano picture. Kat is so creative with the food and everything she does. Missed her and Jason. The signing was so much fun. I really enjoyed talking with Alisha Rai, Kimberly Kincaid and Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Sorry for holding up the line…again! It was great weather for the whole weekend. Relaxing now that I’m back home. See you in November for GNO.

  6. Laura, that last picture is breathtaking! Love Kat’s random (what a laugh!) and artful food pics, too. My garden’s starting to show signs of winding up, too. My nasturtiums, grown from seed, were a delightful surprise. My monarda grew huge from the one plant I brought home, but not a single bloom – maybe not enough sun? It only got morning to noon sun. Prepping basil to freeze today, makes a nice change in soups in the winter. Would have loved to go to that signing, since JAK has been a long favorite – in all her personalities! Starting to get into SEP’s works, too. Bet there was a lot of laughter that day. Wishing you and yours an absolutely gorgeous autumn.

  7. It was an absolute thrill to meet Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Jayne Ann Krentz, Susan Wiggs and all the other authors! Thank you for the opportunity to meet with these wonderful writers! I’m enjoying getting to know Eve and Roarke…just finished Naked in Death, bought book 2 & 3 yesterday and love having them signed by Nora! Thanks to all who organize this event ?

  8. Thanks for sharing. Coming to a book signing is on my list (bucket) Hopfully not to far in the future. My sister Debbie keeps saying we are gonna make a road trip to let me meet you and I can’t wait to just go in and walk around to see all the marvelous books at TTP. Inn Boonsboro is on the list along with Vesta and the Tap House(?)
    We want to make it a memorable weekend.
    Kat is very talented. She and my daughter in law,Jen, are alike in being creative. Is Kat musically inclined too?
    A lot of creative people are also able to play musical instruments. Jen took guitar lessons and then taught herself the violin and the baby cello.
    I thank you for all that you do for us and I am looking forward to getting and reading Year One. The first chapter has whet my appetite for more!

  9. I was at a author talk in Cleveland Ohio with Susan Wiggs. I love hearing how the creative process works with each author. Someday I will get to TTP and finally meet NR.
    Love the blogs. Thank you for sharing with your fans.

  10. Love all the photos – they just enhance the narrative. Everyone happy to be home, houses in order, gardens going into autumn mode, a successful book signing with fabulous authors and fans, and a lovely sunset to say adieu to a vacation. The dog offering assistance was perfect.

  11. Those affected by hurricanes and by losses of all kinds are in my prayers today. Many of us have much, and lives can change in mere seconds. We lost 2 yesterday from different things.
    Listening to the newest In Death is a good escape. Finished this afternoon, so back through from the beginning I go.
    Thank you, Nora, for your talents that you share.

  12. Thank you for a wonderful book signing yesterday. I took a friend who had not yet been to one and we had a blast. Living near Boonsboro, I truly love shopping at the store. Thank you for sharing your wonderful story telling with us all, and being so gracious with your time during the book signings.

  13. Nora and team, high fives!! It was a major undertaking to fly my mom from Gander, Newfoundland and drive with two friends from Toronto to Boonsboro but we had a blast! Thank you so much for the hundreds of hours of reading escape. Looking forward to doing it again sometime. All the best, Irene, Linda, Debra, and Tamara

  14. Was having a doozy of a morning, but just now got to this week’s “Fall Into . . .” blog, and I wanted to thank you for the absolute belly laugh at the Random Katness photo of the “concierge”. How adorable. Now, perhaps my morning will be on the upswing.

    You mentioned putting your nose to the grindstone on the book writing. I’m very curious: how do you keep it straight? Do you have a ritual of switching from NR to JDR and back again? I’m amazed at how you keep it all together and continue to bang out book after book, with nary a falter in the quality. Do you have a process? Or do you just sit before the blank page, take a deep breath, and pound out yet another fab read?

    Sorry to be so nosy. You just seem to have it right down to a science, and I think if I had even a tenth of your “togetherness”, I wouldn’t feel like everything I do is all so chaotic.

    Anyway, enough whining — thanks again for the reads, the fun blogs and the frequent laugh moments. You are a treasure.

    1. I think I actually wrote a blog addressing my process–I just can’t remember now what it’s titled.

      I can’t explain all of that in a response, but yes, I have a process–you can’t write for a living without one. I don’t switch back and forth between Robb and Roberts, or between books. That’s not my process. I write one book at a time, start to finish, in three drafts. That’s the simple answer!

  15. Laura! Thanks for reposting! This is great stuff- but now I want soup again. Yes!

  16. Hi Nora and Laura,
    Nora has such an large group of family and friends it is hard to keep everyone straight 🙂 Please help, who is “our Sarah”?
    Thank you!

  17. I’ve a question Laura. The grandkids are Nora’s other son’s right? We never see photos of him and never see the grandkids with the 4 vacationing so I just guess. If personal just delete this. Otherwise I’m just curious about the rest of Nora’s family. 🙂

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