The Spring Garden


The Nadia cherry/plum hybrid is blooming like crazy this year…for the first time! Hopefully, that means we’ll get at least a few fruits this summer. I’m really interested in what a cherry/plum tastes like.

The other young fruit trees are showing signs of a bountiful harvest as well. I think all the apples are going to bloom, and the pears as well.


I’m looking forward to seeing what happens in the garden this year…if I’m still here on earth. And of course I’d MUCH rather be gone! (see my previous blog post to know why.) But only God knows what His plans are, and whatever they are, they are perfect. Love this new stepping stone for the garden I bought this month!


I have my greenhouse (and my kitchen window) filling with pots of started seeds, but the primary thing I’ve been doing is building the last three major builds of my little urban farm: the meat chicken coop, the Bunny Bordello, and the wildlife garden corner.

The egg chickens don’t like the annual takeover of their coop by a dozen crazy teenaged Little Meats, so I decided to remodel the old duck coop into a coop that would work for the meat chickens.


I took off the nesting area, added an enlargement to the indoor area, then reattached the nesting area to the right side. Until the Little Meats arrive (I have three dark Cornish coming April 23rd, plus I’ll get a handful of Freedom/Red Rangers) the egg girls are using it as a fun place to hang out and lay their eggs. They like variety, my hens. I’m desperately hoping that one of them will go broody in the next couple of weeks and save me the trouble of hand-raising these little meaties.


Another view of the remodeled coop. The stepping stones lead through the mini “food forest” I’m planting, right to the nest box area.

Yesterday, I finished the Bunny Bordello. This is the male rabbit’s new home, right next to the does’ Bunny Barn.



Sorrel loves it. Not only does he have more room to play, he can interact with the does through the adjoining wire door.


A couple of weeks ago, I bred both the does to him, and they were perfect little angels about it…no issues at all. Since they’ve since stopped humping each other and started trying to burrow, I think the pregnancy took in both does. I should have babies the first week of April!

My third project (and this one will be very much on-going all Spring and Summer) is the wildlife garden. My first action was to build a fence on the back side, adjoining the neighbor’s fence. I still need to continue my fence at some point right alongside of his, because he built his far too short, and way too full of gaps. Wild rabbits can (and do!) waltz right through his boards to come eat my veggies. Temporarily, I’ve put hardware cloth along the bottom of his fence to keep the rabbits out. I do want this to be a wildlife garden, but the wild rabbits are taking over our neighborhood, and if I let them in, I couldn’t have any food left for me or MY rabbits! Also, in the front of the picture, where the pear espalier tree is, I will be putting up a shorter fence, just to define the area, and keep my wild corgi out.


On the wall, I hung a set of mirrors my mom gave me. I adore mirrors in a garden.


I’m building a set of birdhouses to line the lower fence on the left side. The first one had interested possible occupants the morning after I put it up! Also, notice the blue table. This is what you call working with circumstances. That blue table is actually an ancient washing machine that was dumped in a corner of my yard. It was filled with dirt and rocks, and really just immoveable. So I spray painted it blue, put on a wood top, and added a bowl of water for the birds.

I need to start working on planting things. I want to have some more fruit producing trees/bushes for the birds, herbs and flowers for the bees/butterflies, and some dye plants for me. I’ll be also putting in a very small wildlife pond. Very small! And look, I found this adorable frog sculpture to sit on my log. He looks so realistic I do a double take when I walk past him. Hopefully, once I have the pond, I’ll attract some genuine live frogs.


I like having logs in my garden. The bugs like them, and as they break down, interesting things happen: here, a foxglove has actually seeded itself inside.


In my April 23rd chick order, I’m also getting three bantam cochin hens. Besides being great broody hens for more fragile eggs, I’m going to put these smaller chickens to work in my garden, using a chicken tractor, and also some free-ranging in areas where I hope they will be less destructive than standard sized hens. These girls will be hand-raised by me, so they will be super friendly and sweet.  At first, they will living together in a small separate coop, but if they manage to integrate with my older hens, they will be able to move into the regular coop eventually.


One last thing, a dear friend of mine just started a blog documenting her and her husband’s journey towards self-reliance, simplicity, and marital happiness.  I highly recommend you check it out:


The Greatest Gift

It used to be that I thought I had been born into the wrong time. I’ve never much liked modern things – cellphones, computers, cars, tech gadgets in general. I’ve always been drawn to old-fashioned things, and old-fashioned ways of doing things. Working with my hands, growing food, raising animals…I’d be happiest on a piece of land somewhere far away from civilization. Except for the issues of dental care and a few other critical matters, I would have wished I’d been born prior to about 1900.

That has changed. Today I feel so incredibly happy and grateful that I was born here, right now, right where I am. Unless I get unexpectedly hit by a bus, I will be part of a generation and people that will experience the single most incredible thing to ever happen in the history of the world.

The Bible is around 30% prophecy, and unlike every other book of prophecy, the Bible has been 100% accurate. Prophecies written about King Cyrus of Persia and Alexander the Great were so incredibly detailed and correct that when those men were shown these prophecies they instantly recognized themselves. It is the greatest historical document that has ever existed. Time and time again, historians have doubted certain historical pieces of the Bible, only to have the Bible prove itself through archaeological discoveries.

But there are still numerous prophecies left to be fulfilled – the prophecies pertaining to the end of the world as it currently exists. This world of ours is tired and worn out. It’s frustrating and terrifying. All of nature cries out to be redeemed from the evil that has overcome it.  Certain people have been setting dates for the end of the world, based on this blood moon, or that archaic bit of numerology. They’ve all been wrong, and they’ve given Bible prophecy a bad reputation. But those are the failings of men, not the failings of the Bible.

The Bible itself says that for the first time ever in the history of the world, this generation, our generation, is living in the time when all things could be fulfilled. All the things that have to be in place, like the restoration of Israel as a nation and the presence of a Russian alliance in the Middle East, have happened. Everything else, like the existence of a cashless society and a chip implant to allow people to buy and sell, is actively happening now. People are already getting that chip. They are lining up at tech conventions to get one. It’s incredible to watch the news now, because almost everything is torn right out of the Bible. It’s like watching dominoes being set up, oh so carefully – and then holding your breath and waiting for that finger to tip over the first one and start the chain reaction into chaos.

dominoes-2364492_640Soon, Damascus will destroyed completely and made uninhabitable, probably by Israel’s hand. Following that, a coalition of nations (including Russia) will strike against Israel and seek to destroy her. America won’t defend Israel this time. I don’t know why – America is not mentioned in the Bible at all. Probably because we are so new that we are largely unimportant in the scheme of things, and probably because something terrible will distract us and force us to pull our attention in to ourselves. Could be a massive earthquake, could be a strike from North Korea. The end is happening, and it’s happening now, in our lifetimes, likely within five years. I’m thinking that first domino could tip over this year, in 2018.


It’s going to be a terrible time for the people left on earth. It’s going to be the worst time that has ever happened, or will ever happen. For a period of seven years, the equivalent of Los Angeles’ entire population will die every single day.  Of war, and disease, and famine, and natural disasters on a scale we’ve never yet experienced.

Despite that, I’m filled right now with such joy and excitement. Because as terrible as those times will be, no one has to go through them. Going through them is a decision. God has made it clear to all the world that He exists. His existence is so evident throughout all the world – through His created world, through His witnesses, through the very fact of Israel’s miraculous existence itself – so evident that mankind is left without any excuse. It’s a simple fact: eventually all the world will believe in God. No one has a choice about that. The only choice you have is whether you will believe now, when there is still time to save yourself from the horrors to come, or whether you will believe later, when it is too late.


Not believing would be like refusing to believe in the wind because you can’t see it, even though you can see everything the wind does. And because I believe, I will be taken out of the world prior to the end. I will be saved from the wrath to come. One day, probably very soon, millions of people will suddenly disappear out of the world. It won’t be all the churchgoers, because attending church is not enough to save them. It won’t even be all the people who believe in God, because believing in God’s mere existence is not enough either. It will be only the people who have accepted Christ into their lives in a personal relationship with him, the people who believe and confess that Christ came to the earth, and died to pay the debt they owed, died to ransom them from sin and sorrow and guilt, and then rose again, defeating death so that through Him, we also might be saved. Because of His tremendous love for me, regardless of what I deserve, my destiny is no longer chained to this world, and this life. I have been literally and legally adopted into the family of God, chosen to be a daughter and Queen and priest of the world to come.

Some of you reading this already know what I’m talking about. Isn’t it wonderful? The joy is beyond words.

Some of you don’t know. I hope you’ll come to your own understanding, and not continue to brush it off as something that doesn’t apply to your life. You’ve been offered the most precious thing possible to give, a change that will make you happier than you have ever been. It’s a gift. It’s free. And the world that waiting is beyond anything you can imagine.

A Summoning of Djinn

I have a new book out – The Summoning of Djinn. It’s the fourth in the Society of Queen’s Own Monster Hunters series.


After the frightening winter ball at Inkling House, Miss Winnifred Sebastian-Veals believes she has seen the last of snow–and of horrible fairy tales–for at least the rest of her life. But when the Queen’s sorcerer, Mr. Tibbits, and her erstwhile beloved Mr. Smythe come to rescue her, she wonders whether it is truly a rescue at all, or whether she will be plunged into new horrors.

Warning: contains witches, aunts, djinn, kraken, selkies, Icelandic scenery, and volcanoes–preferably extinct. Also contains the remedy to a misplaced heart.


Quick Farm Update

First, let me just say that if you’re reading this and only want to hear about my upcoming book releases, my book email list sign up list is here. Sign up and you’ll get one short novel free, as well as any future short novels I write.

Now back to the animals….

The two new Cream Legbar hens are all grown up, and should be laying their first eggs soon. They are supposed to be sky blue, but I’m slightly skeptical that they will really be THAT blue. I’ll keep you posted!

I’ve named these two new girls Khaleesi and Sansa. The white one is Khaleesi, of course!


Their brother, Bertie Wooster, who I was hoping to keep, turned out to be gorgeous.


Pure white, and he seemed like he might turn out to be a pretty nice guy. Unfortunately, while the nearest neighbors were fine with him, some guy on another street complained, and so I had to get rid of him. Roosters are technically legal to have inside the city limits where I live, but they come under the noise complaints laws, so if someone complains, you’re out of luck. Oh well, better now I guess, then when the hens really got attached to him.  They were a little annoyed by him now, because they just didn’t get the point of his dancing and posturing. They thought he was one weird hen…see Josie’s face in the picture below? That’s her “good gracious, what is he going to do now?” face!


The Rex rabbits are grown up too, but I’m not going to try breeding them until the end of February, at least. I don’t want to deal with new mothers, babies, and cold temperatures. I’ve been letting the male, Sorrel, out to run in the chicken yard, and you can tell they’re of age, because he goes right over to the does’ barn and says hello.


There’s nothing sweeter than a stolen kiss through the wire!


The does are not particularly friendly – they tolerate me because I bring the food, but Sorrel loves to be petted. Since he is so tame, I trust him to play out in the entire yard.

If you’re wondering, the “thing on his neck” is his dewlap. It’s a roll of fat that adult rabbits have. (My mom just had to ask that question on camera, lol).

Best Books I Read in 2017

I read a lot of books, usually around 150 a year. Every year I create a list of the top few I read that really stuck with me, or that changed my life in some way. It’s normally a mix of fiction and nonfiction, junior books and adult. I list them in no particular order…except I always save the absolute BEST BOOK for last. So here we go!

1: The Forgotten Skills of Cooking, by Darina Allen.

Lush photos combined with old-fashioned cookery. Also has chapters on keeping chickens, and other related skills.  This is one of those books that I found at the library, read about two pages, and bought myself a copy off Amazon.


2: The Backyard Homestead Book of Kitchen Know-How, by Andrea Chesman.

I put off getting this book for ages, even though I love the others in this backyard homestead series. I felt like I would already know too much of the information inside. Wrong. Although I did know a great deal, Chesman wrote a very entertaining and personal book, with a wealth of helpful information.


3: Empty Grave, by Jonathan Stroud.

The final book in the Lockwood & Co Series. This series was phenomenal all the way through, and this particular book could easily have been the best of the year…except that it was overtaken at the very tail of 2017 by the actual winner.  I’m just blown away by the world-building Stroud has done here. Funny story…at my library, a 30s something guy came in to pick up this book, and he was visibly over the moon at having it in his hands. I commented on how excited I was to get it myself, and he clutched it against his chest and said, “Yeah, I have to read it fast. My daughter wants it too!” I hear Stroud is considering a spin-off series, and I’d definitely be down for that.


4: Into the Drowning Deep, by Mira Grant.

Mermaids. Evil, murderous mermaids. Or…are they? Really well-done, well-written, and just plain fun. Mira Grant also writes under the name Seanan McGuire, and she’s made this list before under that name.


5: Radical Homemakers, by Shannon Hayes.

This book is how I feel. It’s amazing. And the historical information is extremely interesting.


6: Eat Dirt, by Dr. Josh Axe.

Incredibly interesting book. This could be a life-changing book for almost everyone.


7: Nourishing Fats, by Sally Fallon.

Natural animal fats are not the enemy. Despite what certain medical organizations would like you to believe, it is the lack of whole milk, cream, butter, lard, organ meats and other sources of traditional foods that is causing heart problems, obesity, and almost all of our health issues. This book explains the science, using the medical profession’s own studies to definitively prove that the low-fat diet is nothing more than a lie. Eat more butter! It’s critical for your health.


8: Will Dogs Chase Cats in Heaven, by Dan Story.

Having made an extensive study of the topic, I’ve come to the conclusion there is ZERO Biblical evidence for the idea that animals don’t have immortal souls – and an astounding amount of Biblical evidence that they do. In fact, I think it’s blindingly obvious (once you look) that animals will be redeemed and resurrected from the curse we put upon them. I look forward to sharing my eternity with the animals I love.


9: She Rides Shotgun, by Jordan Harper.

Loved everything about this book…except that it ended. And the author is absolutely right: the bear isn’t real, but he’s true.

Can’t wait to see what Harper writes next.


10: Deep Nutrition, by Catherine Shanahan, M.D.

One of those books everyone should read, especially if you’re EVER planning on becoming pregnant, if you currently have any sort of ill health, are trying to lose weight, or if you just want to strong, young, and healthy all your life.


11: Small-Scale Poultry Flock, by Harvey Ussery

There’s a foreward by Joel Salatin. Do you need to know anything else? Incredible book; hands down THE BEST book on small farm and backyard flocks available. I’ve read most of the chicken books out there, and not a single one comes close to this one. One hundred stars.


12: Assassin’s Fate, by Robin Hobb.

Fantastic end to this series…and probably to all her series set in this particular world. So many fates besides Fitz’s are entwined in this book. Not ashamed to say I was bawling like a baby by the end.


And out of all 150+ books, here’s the absolute best book I read this past year:

13: 7 Things You Have to Know to Understand End Times Prophecy, by Jack Kelley

The cover is a bit cheesy, I will admit. But the words inside are pure gold.  This book has literally changed my life.  Now I’m eagerly watching and anticipating, absolutely positive that we’re not only living in the end times, but that Christ will return within just a few years (if even that long!) to take his church home “in the twinkling of an eye” leaving the rest of the world behind.  For the first time in all of history, ALL the things foretold in the Bible are not only possible, but are actually in the process of happening. It’s incredible to watch the news and see it happen, piece by piece. Jack Kelley also has a helpful website:, with TONS of studies, articles, and answered questions. I’ve been glued to my Bible the last week or so.


New Book Release!

We all of us have monsters inside our heads: the folklore of that inward country, the things that frighten us when we are alone in the darkness. People not just of England, but across the world, find themselves haunted by thoughts of the same unearthly beings: vampires, ghosts, fairies, and gods. And if enough people have thoughts of the same monster, the magic will be given power to manifest itself in the image of what is feared. And thus the monster will be given teeth to bite, and will ravage across the land until it is destroyed.

When the newly-crowned Queen Victoria announces an expedition to India, Miss Winnifred Sebastian-Veals volunteers by joining an elite all-female group: The Society of Queen’s Own Monster Hunters. To her dismay, the other members are rather middle-aged, and more interested in knitting needles than sorcerous spells, vile manuscripts, and iron-bound doorways to hell. But after the Queen’s airship is attacked by an evil djinn, she discovers there is more to the ladies–and herself–than she ever imagined.

Warning: contains horrible ghosts, mermaids, gigantic worms, ghouls, sea monsters, pirates, and incredibly silly Victorian fashions. Also several attractive men who may–or may not–be of possible Romantic Interest.


Now for sale on And starting tomorrow – this first volume will be FREE for one week!  Also, if you sign up for my author newsletter, I’ll send you another free book: An Intelligence of Zombies. It’s the prequel to this new series.

Also available on is the second book in this new Society of Queen’s Own Monster Hunters:


Books 3 & 4 will be up for sale very soon!

Interesting fact: the dress on the covers is actually designed and created by me.



Chicken & Garden Update


The garden has been producing green beans like crazy. I’ve canned four batches already, and I’ll be doing another tonight.  Maybe this year will be the year I don’t run out of canned beans before fresh beans are in season.

My frizzle cochin Ophelia (who already raised one batch of babies this year) went broody again, so I gave her some Silver Fresian Seagull eggs. I don’t know a lot about this breed of chicken because they are super rare, but I was won over by the description of the adults having the profile of actual seagulls, and the chicks being the cutest babies ever. I don’t know about the adult profile, but the chicks are truly adorable.



I gave her a dozen eggs, and it looked like six would hatch. But three of them died as just-born chicks. I’m not sure what happened with two of them, but the third was clearly squashed as it was busy trying to hatch. Ophelia is a big, heavy girl. I’m thinking I’ll keep her for fostering the meat chicks in the future, and leave the more delicate egg hatching business to one of my lighter girls.



They are a lot more grownup now. They have properly feathered wings and tails now. I need to have a photoshoot with them. They were not in the mood when I tried the other day…and Ophelia was being difficult too. She really doesn’t approve of her children’s pictures being plastered across the internet for everyone to see.  Do they look like seagulls yet?


Charlotte also hatched eggs this summer, and hers are growing beautifully. They are Cream Legbars, which I wanted particularly for their blue eggs. I got one in the standard color:


And two surprises – a couple of rare white sports! One is a girl, and the other a future rooster.


The one in front is, of course, the girl. The other is the cutest little roo I have ever seen. I’m in love with him, folks. If he plays his cards right, I might just attempt to keep him in the flock. I’ve already named him Bertie Wooster, which just suits his personality and makes me laugh every time I say it. The white girl is probably going to be Minerva (Minnie for short), and the brown girl still hasn’t told me what her name should be.

The Naked Neck meat chickens are still around, because apparently they have the whole thing figured out, and are refusing to eat enough to get fat. Skinny little birds, these guys. I think I’m going to have to look into other options for next year.

They are still funny.


I might still get a few next year, just for the humor and joy they add to the farm.


A few nights ago, I went to lock them up in their coop. I counted them and counted them, and came up one short. Mom and I looked EVERYWHERE. In the neighbor’s yard, in case it flew over the fence. Under the bushes and up in the trees. I kept expecting to find a sad little scattering of feathers, because I thought something had surely gotten it. But I didn’t even find feathers. Finally, I gave up.

In the morning, it was back in the yard, wandering around like nothing had happened. The next night, it was the same story. One was missing, and couldn’t be found. Finally, though, as I was passing under the grape trellis, I happened to look up.


There it was, looking down at me. I don’t know how many times I walked underneath this trellis while I was searching. And the whole time…staring down at me….


These guys. They are so silly.


I’ve been giving lots of garden tours, so many that I decided I needed to start charging.


And I’ve been working hard on the summer kitchen! The inside is still quite a ways from being finished, but the outside is looking very pretty….