An Independence Day Message:

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by | July 4, 2020 · 11:00 am

Gone Writin’!

Watch this space for status updates on The Passions of Patriots.

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Even More Sad News.

Butterfly, Be Free!

Mama, an avid reader who became blind, is seen here listening to an audiobook.

This Month, my Mother Passed Away.

(What follows is an edited version of her obituary, written by my sister. )

Joan Alice, or “Joanie” (as everyone called her), 88, died on December 11, 2020.

Joanie was born in Chicago, Illinois, to Frank and Lillian Olejnicki Fijolek, and was a true city girl until moving with her husband, Ted, to Lindenhurst, Illinois, in 1956.  Ted and Joanie were among the pioneers of the village, and their early years were chronicled in her book Love, Joanie: Letters from the Suburban Frontier.

Joanie was a career homemaker.  A devoted wife and mother, she was an excellent cook and slapdash housekeeper who preferred digging ditches, hauling dirt, gardening, listening to opera and reading to such drab chores as washing dishes and/or ironing.  She enjoyed camping, and made even the most…

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More Sad News.

My Kitty died last Thursday, November 19, at 11:18 am.

Oliver “Kittypoo” in his prime.

When I adopted him from the animal shelter fifteen years ago, they estimated his age to be about three, so he was approximately eighteen years old. His health had been steadily deteriorating since the first of this year, so my son and I knew what to expect, but it’s never easy when the inevitable finally happens.

He had a brief cameo role in my first novel, Irish Firebrands, as Dillon Carroll’s childhood pet.

Oliver was “Mr. Personality,” liked all humans, and enjoyed talking to people.

He took his responsibility as a companion seriously, and was loyal to his last breath, having chosen to be with me when he collapsed, and died within five minutes.

Because my son was out of town, my daughter came to help. She laid him to rest in the cozy kind of cardboard box in which he loved to play, with his crinkle sack for a cushion, and one of my son’s old T-shirts for a coverlet. His favorite crocheted toys, a bootlace, a handful of kibbles, and a kitty treat accompanied him as “grave goods.”

He rests now in my back garden, not far from my window.

Oliver “Kittypoo” set the bar at its highest, having lived as the perfect example of unconditional love. May we meet again, my most faithful friend!

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Sad news.

My dear son-in-law died at home early Wednesday morning, after a long struggle with complications from Type 1 diabetes mellitus. He was only 46 years old. He and my daughter had been married eleven years.

My daughter and her husband (2009).

He was the author of two of the autograph books I published:

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