Friday evening we squeaked into Broken Bow just in time to get a press release to the Custer County Chief.  Only problem was they left early that day.  Oh well, there is email!  After walking around downtown and looking at the antique cars they had in the town square we went by the “best little christian bookstore in the country”, Keystone Bookstore.  It has been there for years and I have found more good teaching materials for SS and Children’s Ministries there.  The owner has agreed to sell my books!  YAY!  Then over to the nursing home to see Grandma.  She was delighted to see us.  After showing her the signed copy I had brought for her, and reading the dedication etc. she listened to me excitedly ramble about the book.  Finally she said, “ok, now you’ve told me about the book… how are your folks doing!”  Well!  I guess that puts things in perspective doesn’t it.  People over books!  🙂  We found our campsite and were very glad to have electricity as well as all of the other needed services. 🙂  We slept so hard we didn’t even hear the trains going by the campground in the night!

Thursday we drove from Olive Branch, MS to Topeka, KS.  When we woke up the tire was still up so off we went, beating rush hour traffice in Memphis!  Once in Missouri we stopped to see my mother’s cousin, Lois.  It was so much fun seeing her and reminiscing with her!  Family is awesome and I think that cousins are just some of the neatest people in the world!  We arrived in Topeka and my Dad’s cousin and her husband picked us up and took us home!  That was great!  Elinor had already read the book since WinePress had overnighted some copies to her house when we weren’t sure my copies would make it before we left.  She especially liked “Uncle Floyd” since she knew exactly who that character is patterned after!  (My great-uncle Ervin, who was known as Trader Jones).  We talked too about my great-aunt Beulah Jones who was a wonderful lady.  She is the one who gave me the idea of taking my nieces and nephews on an “8 year old trip”.  Beulah sent me cards for every graduation I ever had.  She knew all of her nieces and nephews and their children and kept up with what was going on with ALL of them!  She was amazing.  I wish she and my Grandpa Jones could see this book!  Wow!  They would like it.  The next morning we saw another of my Dad’s cousins at breakfast.  Fun!

Wednesday my books arrived!  What an unbelievably awesome answer to prayer.  They arrived at 7:30 a.m. and we left on our great adventure tour at 11:00 a.m.  We decided to take a southerly route since we have the trailer in tow, and we didn’t want to do mountains.  We saw some beautiful scenery, survived getting through Atlanta and Birmingham and experienced something I call “Galloping down the road.”  This occured when there was uneven road and the trailer and the pick-up seemed to get out of sinc.   Unfortunately, galloping tends to throw things around the inside of the camper!   Anyway, as we approached Memphis (our destination) we decided to stop and fill up with gas so we could just take off in the morning.  When we pulled into the Flying J and parked we discovered a mostly flat tire on the pickup.  Really and truly, mostly flat.  There is nothing to say but… THANK YOU LORD.  It was 8:30 at night but there was a truck repair shop across the road so we went over and they were able to fix the valve stem (the tire was fine).  Bruce told the repair man that we felt we must have had guardian angels on top of our truck all day.  He pointed up to the sign on the building.  We were at “Angel’s Truck and Tire Repair,” in Olive Branch, MS.  🙂 🙂  We decided we had enjoyed enough road time for the day and stayed right there in the parking lot of the Flying J for the night, got up early and still made it through Memphis before rush hour. 🙂

Hello again.  Today my sister called to tell me her son’s reaction to my book.  He is 10.  My sister decided to read it out loud to the three youngest while the 2 oldest are at camp this week.  Having read the first 4 chapters last night, she told them it was time to stop.  “NO,” my nephew begged!  “I don’t want you to stop.”  When my sister asked him if that meant he liked it he responded, “I liked it so much I forgot Aunt Miriam wrote it and I’m supposed to like it!”  Now that’s the response I was hoping for!

Today has been an exciting day.  I worked at the hospital, of course, which was NOT the exciting part.  It is the “slow” time of year there.  However, I received word that my shipment would arrive in Columbia tonight and be delivered here tomorrow.  SOOOO, we are leaving in the morning…. after the delivery!  Now we are pretty much packed up and ready to go on our grand book tour.  We just have to hook up the camper, pack a few more things in the truck (BOOKS!!!!!) and hit the road!  We are hoping to make West Memphis tomorrow night, then on to Topeka for Thursday night.  I will try to keep you updated as we go, but it will depend on internet service. 🙂

Today is July 1st.  This is the month when my book will finally be ready!  It’s hard to believe  a project  I started some 12 years ago will be finished in a couple more weeks.  Or is it just beginning?  Those who have done this before me tell me it’s just started!   They say selling the book is harder work than writing it.  I believe it!  Just trying to get all of the publicity pieces together has kept my husband busy the past few weeks and we purchased a publicity package from WinePress.   I am really excited and a bit nervous about the fair in Broken Bow, NE.  This book takes place in Central Nebraska, near Broken Bow.  The climax of the book actually occurs at the Custer County Fair, in Broken Bow.  This summer at the Custer County Fair my book will be launched.  This is one of those “full circle” moments.  The experiences I had as a child, there at that fairground and at my grandparent’s ranch led to the idea for the book.  Now the book is taking me right back to where it all began. 🙂  I like that.  So, if you are in the Broken Bow area August 3-5 stop by the fairgrounds and come by my booth under the grandstand.  I’ll be watching for you!