Posted by: Karen Cogan | 17/09/2018

I was Wondering…

John largest painting

Last week I about our trip to the Grand Canyon. While I
was there, I had more time to write. The extra time
felt like a luxury even though I missed my daily routine
at home.
I asked my readers what you wished you had more time
to do.  The answers were interesting.  Some folks wished
for more meditation and quiet time while others wanted
to read and relax. Fitness and outdoor activity also scored
high. More energy to do the activities we like was also on
the list.

With this in mind, I wanted to share:
3 Time-Management Tips That Will Improve Your Health And Productivity
Here’s to all of us learning to use time well!

Blessings,
Karen

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted by: Karen Cogan | 10/09/2018

Simply Beautiful

John largest painting.png

I’m at the Grand Canyon this week while
my husband paints for an art show. It’s
great to have time (that I don’t have at
home) to keep up with my social media
and write. At home, I homeschool
grandkids, clean house, cook, walk the
dog, and ride my horse. These are all
good things. There’s just not a lot of time
left. So I block out time for writing in the
late afternoon and evening.

I wonder what kind of things fill your
days and what you wish you had more
time to do. I think it would be fun to do
a survey (anonymous, of course) to see
how much we all have in common, or not.

Comment to this post and tell me what you
dream about doing if you had more time.
I would love to hear from you. I’ll get back
with you next week and let you know what
I learn. Until then, God bless you.

Karen

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 31/08/2018

Wow! Have your pick of the store for .99

This is a heads-up that all of these books are on sale for .99 for a limited time.

Christian e-boo bonanza adGo here to look at these great titles.

While you’re there check out this book.  

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 27/08/2018

Three odd Tidbits about Regency England

Regency zoo

Here are a few more interesting
customs from the Regency period
with anecdotes that bring them
to life.

A Night at the Theatre: Beware of
dripping wax.

We imagine a night at the theatre as lasting
perhaps three hours. In the Regency period,
an evening of theatre would include the main
attraction of, perhaps a Shakespeare play, and
then, an afterpiece that would be a lighter
performance, perhaps a comedy. Consequently,
a night out to see a play could easily become
a five hour entertainment.
Until 1817, the auditorium seating for a
play was lit by candlelight. Large overhead
chandeliers were restocked with fresh candles
each day of the performance. Unfortunately,
wax that dripped from the candles was known
to fall upon theater-goers seated below them
in the pit. The higher priced seating in stalls
and private boxes was preferred because
their lighting came from wall scones.
Though novels may portray love affairs
going on in the private boxes, it was quite
unlikely. The lights were never dimmed
and to snuff out the candles in a private
box would call attention to the occupants.
Instead, the theatre was a place to be
dressed fashionably, noticed and admired
by those less wealthy patrons seated in the pit.

Thank the Ladies for Lunch

Until Regency times, lunch was not a
recognized meal. Breakfast was served
between eight and ten o’clock a.m. Then,
the morning stretched on and on, not
ending at noon as it does today. Morning
ended at dinnertime, the main meal of
the day. However, the time for dinner
had also shifted. In prior years, it was
consumed between two and four o’clock.
In Regency times, it became customary to
serve a formal dinner between six and
eight o’clock. With breakfast between
eight and ten in the morning and dinner
at eight o’clock at night, it was difficult to
go so long between meals. Thus, the
ladies decided to institute a light meal
that was often used as an informal social
occasion. Since gentleman were not
commonly home during the day and
dinner conversations were more
structured than those at lunch,
lunchtime was a time to invite a friend
to visit and catch up on social affairs.
In time, it became the accepted custom
that we expect today.

Exotic Prisoners

Visitors to the Tower of London were
in for a treat. For centuries, the structure
had housed exotic animals, including
elephants, hippos, baboons, exotic birds.
Martin, the grizzly bear joined them in 1816.
Due to ignorance of the needs of such unusual
animals, they were often fed inappropriate
diets. The elephant was given wine instead
of water for several months during the year
an ostriches were fed nails in the mistaken
notion that they could digest iron.
Visitors were allowed closer access to the
animals than those in our modern zoos.
At one time monkeys were kept in a
furnished room where visitors could
interact with them. Other exotic animals
were close enough for the public to play
with and touch. Unfortunately, this
closeness led to injuries. In 1810 the
monkeys were removed from contact
with the public when one tore a boy’s
leg. Parasols and umbrellas were
destroyed by a leopard. A wolf escaped
and ate a zoo keeper’s terrier. A lion died
of injuries when two tigresses were
accidently led into his cage.
By 1835 it was decided the Tower of
London was not suited to keeping
animals and the remaining inhabitants
were transferred to Regent’s Park.
…………………………………………..
Times have changed since these
days. Would you liked to have lived
then? Find Regency romance here.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 21/08/2018

More Oddities of the Regency Period

The Regency Period officially lasted nine years, from
1811 to 1820. Reading was a favored activity during
this time. A few of the favored authors and poets were
Lord Byron, Jane Austen, Percy Shelley and Sir Walter
Scott. In addition to reading, dancing and games were
popular. Tables were set and players indulged in
cribbage, whist and other games.  Since gambling was
also popular, often the games carried  wagers. Balls
were another pleasant pastime. Often the guests
danced country dances or well known ones such
as Sir Roger de Coverly (mentioned by Charles
Dickens) and “La Boulanger”.
Here are more odd and interesting facts.

Highway Robbery

You’ve probably heard of highwaymen. Did you
know that the expression was used to order you
off your horse or out of your carriage? When the
highwayman robbed the carriage, he would use
the expression to demand you stand and hand
over your valuables. Refusal would likely mean
death.
One famous highwayman was Jerry Abershawe
who operated between London and Portsmouth
in the later 18th century. He started at only
seventeen years old and formed a gang or robbers
based at an inn on the London Road. He was
executed in 1795. Yet his reputation lived on in
the Regency period.
He was hanged and put into a gibbet which had a
special steel frame to hold the criminal’s body.
The frame was fashioned in the form of a human
body and held the corpse together for several weeks.
In the case of the infamous Jerry Abershawe, several
of his smaller bones were stolen from the body as
souvenirs and finger and toe bones used in candleholders.

Hunting

The right to hunt was limited to landowners worth
at least a hundred pounds a year or to those leasing
land worth at least a hundred-fifty pounds a year.
If the land occupant couldn’t meet these standards
he was not allowed to own a hunting dog. Poaching
was a crime and punishable by exportation to Australia.
However, the privileged landowners or leasers could
hunt on the small landowner’s property with impunity.
During the Napoleonic war, hunger was widespread
for the small property owners. Yet they were still
limited to hunting rabbits and not hares and could
not sale any game in the marketplace except rabbits,
which they probably needed to eat to survive.

……………………………………………………………….

I hope you enjoyed these facts.
For intriguing historical
romance novels check
out my Pinterest board,
“Historical Romance”.
Click Here

 

Bone_George-IV-(1762-1830)-as-Prince-Regent-after-Lawrence-1816

The Regency Period dates from 1811 to 1820 when the Prince of Wales, affectionately known as “Prinny”, ruled as Regent during the time that his father, George III was declared incapable due to mental incapacity. By order of the Regency Act, the future Kind George IV became acting ruler. Prinny was self-indulgent and vain. His love of the arts was copied by fashionable society. During this time, literature, art, and architecture flourished. It was a time of great cultural oddities such as the ones I’ll show you below.

Mourning Jewelry

During the Regency Period, it was a common custom to keep a lock of hair that had belonged to a beloved deceased. However, they did not keep it pressed in a book or in a handkerchief in a drawer. They wore their relatives by placing their hair in rings, necklaces, brooches, bracelets and other items. The hair might be woven, braided or embroidered into the design. Some rings were quite intricate. One reference showed a weeping woman, two funeral urns, and locks of hair memorialize. Wealthy people might include in their will how many rings were to be made and the design they wished for the rings.

Arsenic

A lovely shade of emerald green paint would not normally make you think of death. However, during the Regency era, this is what happened. In 1814, a toxic pigment named emerald green was made in Germany. This lovely shade of green was used in textiles, clothing and confections, such as candies. Within a year after these products came into the market, warnings were issued about the safety of the paint. When there was chronic exposure, many deaths were caused by this paint. Even so it was many years later before it was removed from the market.

Stale Bread Anyone?

Wheat was in short supply during the Napoleonic War. Without the wheat the English could not make the daily bread that was a staple of their diet. They did not want to have a massive shortage because that would cause complaints and lead to lead unrest. Consequently, Parliament passed the Stale Bread Act. This made it illegal to sell or eat fresh bread. Any bread eaten or sold had to be more than twenty-four hours old. This was because stale bread is more filling than fresh bread. Though the penalties for disobedience were severe, they were also hard to enforce. The government repealed the act the next year. Still, with the country at war, the shortage did not end until after the war was over.

The Twelve Days of Christmas and Twelfth Night Revels

Party anyone? The day after Christmas (called boxing day) began the countdown of the twelve days or Christmas. On January 5th the end of the Christmas season was celebrated with food, games and parties. A customary party leveled the social strata. The Christmas cake was baked with a bean and a pea inside. Whoever got the bean was king for the night. Whichever woman got the pea was queen for the night. Servants were included in the festivity and could rise above their station for the evening if they got the bean or pea. Greenery was taken down and burned by midnight in order to avoid bad luck for the new year. One tradition held that a goblin would appear for every branch that remained.

 

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 06/08/2018

What can you pick up but not put down?

Want to know the answer? It is a good book.
Think about the stories you like best. What
drew you to them? Was it the plot or the
characters? There is an age-old debate about
which is
of these is more important.
I believe we are drawn to unforgettable
characters, memorable
dialogue and a plot
that makes sense. I remember conversations
from books I read years ago. Do you know
which books have these famous lines? (Answers below)

 1.  “Tomorrow is another day.”
2.  “Bah, humbug!”
3.  “All we have to decide is what to do with the
time that is given to us.”

4.  “Real courage is when you know you’re
licked before you begin, but you begin
anyway and see it through no matter what.”
5.  She shuffled past the people, not liking
the way they stared at her. It reminded
her of high school where they whispered
about her. She couldn’t eat here when
they were looking at her instead of her
looking at them. She would choke on
the food. 

ANSWERS:

1 GONE WITH THE WIND
2. A CHRISTMAS CAROL
3.THE HOBBIT
4. TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD
5.  THE FLOWER GIRL   (Ha, that’s my book)

 

Do these books have unforgettable characters,
memorable dialogue and a plot that makes sense?
Of course there are many other books that could be
listed. Did I miss your favorite? Comment and tell
me what book you would add to the list, or give us
a quote and see if we can guess.

To see more fun quotes, go to:

https://www.buzzfeed.com/isaacfitzgerald/reading-love?utm_term=.tbN34wAoB#.ucQJQMERl

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 30/07/2018

The Best News Ever

Our best news is relative to what’s going on in our lives. One person’s best news might be that an illness is curable or an operation has saved their life The same day, the best news for  another person may be that a stock has gone up. Even though they are not equal in consequences, both recipients are elated and we can relate to them because most of us can remember back to the best news we ever received.

This is all to point out how quickly our priorities can change. When things are going smoothly, money, success and comfort are foremost in mind. When life gets rough, dire issues take our focus.

If you are now in such a position or you know someone who is struggling, you may want to consider these three reads because the best news is that it is possible to cope with hard times.

 

https://believeandcreate.com/best-books-when-life-is-hard/

 

 

 

 

Fiction book on this subject:

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 25/07/2018

The Horrendous Happening at Holly Green Manor

When I wrote the Regency novel The Secret of Holly Green Manor, the research into inheritance laws intrigued me. I learned about primogeniture, which means the right of the first son to inherit. The estate could be “entailed” to require this as a legal right. This came about to preserve a family’s riches for future generations. If they had allowed equal apportionment of the estate to each child the estate would likely dwindle over time. Daughters hoped to marry someone of equal or better social standing and a younger brother would inherit upon the oldest brother’s death. As in Jane Austin’s novel Pride and Prejudice, if there were only daughters, a cousin would be in line to inherit the estate.
In The Secret of Holly Green Manor, a history of murder follows those are to inherit the estate. When it threatens to happen again, the daughter of the current heir attempts to discover who is attempting to kill the man she will marry. If she fails, she has everything to lose.
The intriguing Regency era is one of my favorite time periods for novels. I enjoy reading and writing them. I would love to know the era you like best. Feel free to comment with your favorite era and book.
Until next time, keep reading.
Karen Cogan Read More…

Posted by: Karen Cogan | 16/07/2018

Books that Speak to the Heart

We all have favorite books that have spoken to us at just the right time in our lives. As a middle grade student, I read Caddie Woodlawn and fell in love with the characters and 1860’s time period. Anyone else remember that book? Beautiful Joe was sweet and touching and told from the dog’s point of view. It made me cry in some parts. However, I will never forget the story.

As a teen, I was captivated by Gone With the Wind, A Wrinkle in Time and J.R.R Tolkien, the Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings Trilogy. In its own way each of these books made indelible marks on my values and view of life.

As adults, the vast range of books can be overwhelming. Most of us don’t have time to read as much as we would like. Yet, when we find books that speak to our heart, we carry it with us forever. Since I am an animal lover, I will always remember, Dean Koontz’s novel, Watchers, and the special dog named Eisenstein. At the other end of the spectrum, I read Janette Oak’s sweet Love Comes Softly series and keenly felt the joys and struggles of these characters.

I hope that you are meeting new friends in a special book that will live in your heart. If so, please be sure and comment. Perhaps, someone else will find just what they are looking for, too.

Happy Reading!

Alaska and Karen

https://www.amazon.com/default/e/B001JSB9XE?redirectedFromKindleDbs=true

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