Saturday, 29 April 2017
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Diana Lynn's Blog

Wednesday, 26 April 2017 19:01

The Wonder of Gus

Suzie was the first dog to steal my heart. My family and I had been living in Modesto, California for a while, and I had been begging for a dog. The answer was always, "No", until the night my parents went to a Halloween party, and came home with a cute, little black and brown Dachshund. Apparently, the dog was first prize in a dress-up contest that my dad had easily won. My mother had dressed Dad from head to toe (all 6'3" of him) as a woman. I remember hysterically laughing with my sisters when he came into the…
Thursday, 20 April 2017 15:40

Easter Memories

When I look at the picture on the cover of my book, "The Road Back to Hell", I think of the Easters of my childhood. I will always remember that Easter Sunday on April 19, 1954. After attending the church service at Immanuel Lutheran Church on Second Street in Jamestown, New York, my parents and I were strolling hand-in-hand up Third Street towards town. A very nice newspaperman asked if he could take our picture. The smile on my face says it all―I was a happy little four-year sandwiched between two loving parents and I was beaming from ear-to-ear! It…
Thursday, 13 April 2017 13:01

Making Memories with Friends

I recently read a book that had been sitting on my nightstand for months entitled, "The Girls from Ames- A Story of Women & a Forty-Year Friendship." The cover picture of a group of perky, smiling, teenage girls standing side-by-side with their hands on their hips drew me in. Once I began reading, I could not put it down. It reminded me of my junior high days when I was part of a special group I lovingly referred to as my "West Side Friends". Like my friends, the Ames girls had known each other from grade school, through junior high…
Thursday, 30 March 2017 01:40

The Power of Teachers

Recently, I was the guest speaker before a group of teacher's at their Alpha Delta Kappa meeting. While preparing for this event, I decided to structure my presentation around my personal experiences with several, special teachers who had made a difference in my life. My fifth-grade teacher, Miss Loretta Funk, was the first teacher who truly affected my life. In the summer of 1959, my family had moved into a new apartment, which meant I would be attending a new school in the fall. I was extremely nervous on the first day of school. When I was welcomed with a…
Wednesday, 22 March 2017 17:08

Evoking Memories

When I started my writing journey, everything I wanted to write about was stored in my heart and in my mind, and I began to wonder how I would ever get those thoughts on paper. I enrolled in online courses through Writer's Digest that helped me create a plan through an outline. I proceeded to collect information from my sisters, an aunt in California, and my cousin, Suzie. Unfortunately, everyone else in my family had long been deceased, and there was no one else who could give me more insight into my past. Upon completion of that phase of preparation,…
Thursday, 16 March 2017 00:07

The Luck of the Irish!

Being Irish is the one nationality I can lay claim to because my maternal great-great grandfather, John Francis Foote moved from Ireland to Jamaica, New York in 1884. When I married Jim Farley in 1980, I believed I had even more reason to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. I used to spend a lot of time decorating the house with Irish signs and knick-knacks. We even flew the Irish flag from our porch. However, this year I have been so busy that I did not even put my little leprechaun on the kitchen windowsill. Without the decorations, I will rely on…
Wednesday, 15 March 2017 23:48

The Luck of the Irish

Being Irish is the one nationality I can lay claim to because my maternal great-great grandfather, John Francis Foote moved from Ireland to Jamaica, New York in 1884. When I married Jim Farley in 1980, I believed I had even more reason to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. I used to spend a lot of time decorating the house with Irish signs and knick-knacks. We even flew the Irish flag from our porch. However, this year I have been so busy that I did not even put my little leprechaun on the kitchen windowsill. Without the decorations, I will rely on…
Thursday, 09 March 2017 16:01

Along Came Gus

Tuesday, 07 March 2017 20:57

Along Came Gus!

We lost our beloved Westie, Beau, on September 29, 2016. Jim and I were devastated. When Beau was diagnosed with kidney disease in March, we had two choices― to completely change his diet and life style or put him down. We opted for the first choice, hoping it would give him a year or two more of life. I immediately changed his diet; no more treats, Cesars or Iams. I replaced those things with kidney-diet dry food recommended by our veterinarian. Beau would not touch it. After not eating anything for three days, I called the vet's office and they…
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 17:18

What Makes Me Tick

In a recent blog, I mentioned the fact that my son and our office manager were concerned because they feel I do not spend enough time relaxing, or in their words, "chilling out". While looking through some older writings I came across this story about my great-grandmother, Gussie. I decided to include it in my blog because it definitely explains why I am me. Perhaps some of you will be able to relate. While recently driving down Washington Street in my hometown, Jamestown, NY, I glanced to the right at the park where I spent many sunny days playing as…
Wednesday, 22 February 2017 17:56

It's All About Love

Valentine's Day is all about love, and last Tuesday was no exception. Although it always falls on the same day every year, February 14th, as of 9:00 that morning, I still did not have much for anyone. I used the excuses I was - Too busy working trying to get my book on Amazon I figured my husband already knew I loved him. Besides, there was no sense making his favorite cherry pie because he is on a diet. My grandchildren were all too old to expect something special from Nonny. My puppy, Gus, cannot eat chocolate. The Sunday before…
Thursday, 16 February 2017 01:08

My Self-Publishing Journey

Before completing my writing my memoir, "The Road Back to Hell", I explored all of the options of publishing. I read articles in my writer's magazines, researched traditional publishing versus self-publishing online, and discussed it with several members of my memoir writer's group. When I compared the pros and cons of both options, I decided to take the self-publishing route. I made this decision because at my age, I did not want to wait for years for my book to become accepted by a traditional publisher. I had no aspirations of becoming a world famous author―I just wanted my story…
Thursday, 19 January 2017 01:40

Missing Mom

My mother would have celebrated her 85th birthday on January 9th had she lived. On that day this year, as I gazed into the beautiful, sunny sky and saw a big, white, puffy cloud floating by; it brought back a joyful childhood memory. Desperately wanting to share that memory with my mother, I closed my eyes and sent her this message― "Mom, for the first time in many years, I can honestly say that I miss you. I miss your spunky sense of humor, the gleam in your eyes when you were happy, the sound of your smoky voice when…
Tuesday, 10 January 2017 16:24

What a Diff'rence a Summer Makes

1960 We were still living on Stowe Street in the summer of 1960. I had made many new friends in fifth-grade and spent most of my days playing with them at their homes. Returning home on a hot, summer afternoon, I could hear the familiar strains of “What a Diff’rence a Day Makes,” floating through an open window of our apartment. That song disturbed me. It usually meant I would find my mother standing over the ironing board with a cigarette burning in an ashtray and a can of Blatz beer sitting beside it. Whatever happened to the coffee she…
Thursday, 05 January 2017 12:28

2016- A Year I Will Always Remember!

January of last year started out with a bang with my first book signing and public speaking engagement at the Heritage House in Brookville. I remember it being a very cold and blustery night, and I feared the worst―no one would come. To my surprise, people began flocking in as soon as the doors opened at 6:00pm. I was shocked to see so many faces coming through the door! If the tables were turned, and I had to go out on a night like that, I am not sure I would have. These folks were real troopers, and at that…
Wednesday, 21 December 2016 03:06

The Power of Christmas Memories

Each year, as Christmas Eve approaches, I set aside a special time to turn on my favorite Christmas music, sip a glass of wine, and sit in front of my lit Christmas tree reflecting on Christmases' past. My first Christmas memory is the year that Santa brought me my beloved Tiny Tears doll. I was three-years-old and sitting on Santa's lap. When he asked what I wanted for Christmas, I joyfully exclaimed, "I really, really want a Tiny Tears doll!" Early Christmas morning, I remember running to the tree in search of my doll. I burst into tears when she…
Wednesday, 14 December 2016 02:19

Peace, Love and Joy

Last week, I began my annual Christmas decorating, and as usual, I made umpteen trips up and down the attic and basement stairs, carrying boxes filled with Christmas tree balls, lights for the tree and mantles, my Santa collection and an assortment of other Christmas paraphernalia. A job that usually brings me great joy, turned into a pre-Christmas nightmare! The big lights I painstakingly put on my tree, all burned out as soon as I plugged them in! Nothing was where I thought it should be and I spent needless hours looking for this and that. Add to the mix,…
Thursday, 01 December 2016 23:25

An Early Christmas Gift

I have subscribed to Writer's Digest magazine since I began writing in 2009. I cannot wait for it to come in the mail every month! It's filled with great articles for writers of every genre―including tips, techniques and motivators to help you craft your book; information about traditional publishing and self-publishing; featured authors and agents and upcoming events. They offer a myriad of online tutorials like, "How to Write Your Life Story". Having enrolled in several of their programs, I highly recommend them. Attending the Writer's Digest Annual Conference in New York City in August was one of the highlights…
Wednesday, 23 November 2016 01:27

The Power of Thankfulness

As Thanksgiving approaches, I often think back to my childhood Thanksgivings that we spent at my Grandmother and Grandfather Conklin's house in Warren, Pennsylvania. Dressed in our Sunday best outfits, my four younger sisters and I crowded into the back seat of our car, and sang our favorite songs on the thirty-minute drive from Jamestown to Warren. I clearly remember the sweet scent of apples ripening in the wicker basket at the bottom of the steps; the delicious aromas of roasting turkey and baking pies emanating down the stairs; and the fresh smell of Dove soap on my grandmother's cheek…
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