July 2, 2017

Here’s What’s Happening in Nebraska: An Author Trio: Annette Snyder, Toni Sweeney and Loree Peery

                                                   Annette Snyder Shares:  _______________________

Garage sale season is on!  It’s a great time of the year to score something I never knew I needed for a price I never thought I’d get for that which I didn’t need!  Or so my husband says.  He forgets about my awesome plant holder I scored,  our fantastic basement furniture I picked up, never mind the cast iron towel rods I now use as curtain tie-backs or the 1959 dining room set I got for $400. Ever since my son-in-law and co-conspirator, Danny, scored Italian Marble we pulled out of a soon-to-be-demolished house and put it in my backyard which we will eventually use to build fire pits, my husband hasn’t been on board.  I have faith that once we get those fire pits finished, he’ll be right back to sharing my enthusiasm for the used. 

Here’s a little piece I penned about one of my favorite pastimes here in Nebraska:
I am a Queen of Garage Sales, a self-bestowed title awarded while fitting a used tiara from a long table of second hand items.  The crown, fashioned of high quality, gold tone plastic, studded with genuine artificial pink jewels priced at pennies was purchased only until bartering the abdicating queen down.  I wore it faithfully one hot Saturday through my multi-family kingdom while knighting passersby with my long stemmed daisy scepter plucked from the yard of a peasant.  When my companion, the Duchess of Second-hand, informed me in language un-befitting monarchs,  how I reminded her of the village idiot, I relinquished my crown to a five-year-old future princess at the next processional stop.  

Jumping in my coach, its giant cargo area fitting of a king sized bed, Duchess of Second-Hand and I preceded a brigade of carriages touring the kingdom searching for royal treasures.
I bestowed my prescience among one Lady’s lane. Genuine silver plated platters lined buffet tables as I approached and asked, “How much for this?”  I held up a shiny engraved platter that would serve well at the next royal ball.  

“One hundred pence.” Lady of the fortress replied. 

I examined the genuine silver plated piece and knew one hundred pence was far too high a price to pay.  “I offer ten.” I searched my satchel and paid in gold coins. 

I found some fine antique bottles.  They were glass, two feet tall, the undamaged label on each bottle read, Windsor Canadian, and they were marked one pence each.  I knew those bottles were worth far more than the asking price.  I considered my royal standing.  Should I pay the meager price for the antique glass whiskey bottles I knew came from long ago pub advertisement and walk away with the usury of the day or tell the merchant she was dramatically under pricing?  Because I felt overly noble, I inquired, “My Lady-Do you know what these are?”

“My Lord acquired those bottles during a charge to the west.”

“Dear Lady, I am aware of these fine artifacts and, I will be happy to purchase them for three rubles each, however, they’re worth much more.  I’ve seen them sold in a prior kingdom.  I will purchase them for the price you ask but I’d rather see them sold for their worth.”  

Lady of Lane immediately moved the bottles beneath a tapestry and I immediately kicked myself with the point of my button up boot.  

The Duchess and I continued on to the next stronghold which led to a desirable wooden throne, two cathedrae and a side table with an authentic faux wood top.  Constructed from original wine barrels and rich Corinthian vinyl in bright diamond shapes, I knew the furniture would look delightful in the dungeon.   I’d been searching the empire for just such furnishings since we remodeled the castle.  It would coordinate with my velvet portrait of the Spanish Queen sporting a bright red costume with massive cleavage and the lovely pictures of tropical parrots made from antique feathers, gifted from a visiting dignitary.  

As I examined the trove, the merchant greeted me with a smile fitting of a peasant wanting gold. “Are you interested in this collection?”

“Well, sir, I do take a particular liking to this except the wood clashes with the royal architecture.”  

“I’m asking two hundred and twenty five schillings.”

With the purchase of the priceless silver tray, the procurement of the coronet I bestowed upon the new princess and the pence I would need to refuel my carriage, I did not have the required price.  “I offer you 180-that’s all I have.”

The merchant accepted my offer and my gold. 

Just then, the Lord and Lady from across the way arrived.  “How much for the furniture, Sir?”

The merchant seemed to frown at the thought he could have haggled a higher price. 

 “Take your leave sir, I’ve already purchased.  But I could use some help loading the throne into my carriage.”  It felt bizarre asking for help with my seized prize when I usurped Sir of Neighborhood from the purchase but the King was at the castle, the Royal Children were enjoying the sun of the royal water park, the merchant was far too into his years.   I knew there was no way in kingdom come that Duchess and I were lifting it on the carriage without a wench. The weight was upwards of three horses, two sows and fifteen chickens.  

Under great regret, Lady and Sir of Neighborhood, helped. I did feel a bit of guilty as I whipped away in my metal horse. My  redemption?   I made a new ally in the Lady of Antique Pub Bottles.
Upon return to the castle, the King said, “You purchased bowling alley furniture?” 

“No Sire!  This will look lovely gracing our new dungeon.  With that Billboard we pillaged from the Royal Grandmother, the picture of the Spanish Bride and those dramatic feather Parrots, this cask furniture will match our antiquities.”

“My Queen, you are a hoarder.”   The King walked away from the carriage shaking his head. 

“Wait Sire!  You have to help me unload this.  Its weight is that of three horses, two sows and fifteen chickens.”

“It always is,” the king grumbled. 

I summoned Queen Mother to view my treasures while the King, still grumbling, looked on.  Queen Mother said, “What price did you pay?”

I relayed the terms of conquest.

Queen Mother said, “What vexes you King?  I saw this very throne in another kingdom in the empire of Iowa.  It wasn’t in nearly this fine a condition and the main throne alone was 300 florins.  You got the throne, the two side chairs and the table for a fine price.” 

Her statement failed to stop the King’s harsh growl.  However, as the Queen, I’ve given myself amnesty to empire sales without objection of the King. If the royal urge strikes, I scour domain publications for such opportunities and, if I'm not taking audience, I hop in the carriage to conquer another block. 

Learn all about me and my work on this blog or visit my website for more information. http://annettesnyder.atspace.com/  

I’m offering a prize to someone who leaves a comment.  One lucky winner will get a signed copy of a novel of their choice from my book list, a Keep Nebraska Beautiful Tote and a Spa Bath Basket.  Leave a form of contact in your comment to win!   You can find all my books right here, visit my website with the link above or use the easy click tabs up top! 

 _______________Tony V. Sweeney Says:___________________

In the winter, it’s best to stay inside, warm and dry, away from snow and below zero temp.  That’s

when I do a good portion of my writing. It’s a great deal quieter then, also. Then I transport myself to the planet Felida and indulge in some deep space hi-jinks with my favorite space opera hero, Sinbad sh’en Singh. I’ve just completed the last novel in the series The Adventures of Sinbad, which was released on June 15 by Class Act Books.
Sinbad’s world is a far cry from Lincoln, Nebraska, but occasionally he has the same problems as mere Earthpeople do.

With the onset of warm weather, the city of Lincoln gets busy…road-work, renovations, landscaping…all has to be done before the weather turns back to winter and temperature extremes prevent outside work. At present, there are 24 road projects going on in Lincoln, a good many of them around the capitol, a block from where I live.  This occasionally makes it difficult to get anywhere. Our apartment building is being re-painted and trees are being cut down and replaced with decorative boulders and ornamental native grasses and shrubbery.

No garage sales here, or people tending their gardens or flower beds, but the hum of riding mowers from landscaping companies fill the air as does the buzz of power tools, with an occasional yap of a dog as he and his master go for a walk around the capitol.
A few blocks away, one of Lincoln’s beauty sites, the Sunken Gardens, is now in full-bloom with hundreds of plants and flowers, as well as a swimming pool-sized koi pond complete with cattails and waterlilies. Across the road from it, a 12-foot memorial fountain flows with water into an even larger pool. This and the capitol building itself will be filled with both townies and visitors once the weather stabilizes.

That’s when it’s time to abandon the keyboard for a while and get outside into the sunshine!

Tony writes sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and western adventures with romance thrown in. So far, she has around 72 novels published as well as numerous short stories. She also writes romances under the pseudonym Icy Snow Blackstone. Check out her video trailers to learn more about her books on  Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tvsweeney

Follow her on Twitter: @ToniVSweeney to stay in the loop.

All entries in The Adventures of Sinbad are available in paperback from the publisher’s website, www.classactbooks.com As well as on amazon.com.

                                   Loree Peery Offers:                                    
From my acreage front porch I see a rock and flower garden to the left with a field in the background. Out front are more flowers and rocks. To the right are trees. Beyond our driveway is a short jaunt to Lincoln. P.S.  The “garden” picture is a few years old. This year’s corn is higher than my waist. My dad used to say it’d be a good crop “if corn was knee-high by the fourth of July.”

Can you say that word ten times fast? You’ll know it after hearing it four times: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVVHs3aTjP0
As of March 1, 2017, the state of Nebraska is now 150 years old. Since we live just outside the city limits to the state’s capital, access to Lincoln’s festivities is a short drive for us.

One afternoon we toured the Nebraska History Museum.
The highlight for us was perusing the work of artist Todd Williams. I wanted to stay on that floor and view each painting a second time. I grew up on a farm in Antelope County, so alphabetically, we found the painting of the Neligh Mills right away. My husband is from Grand Island, which is in Hall County. He exhibited patience. If his home county was York, he would have wanted to start the tour at the bottom of the alphabetical display.
The scheduled tour for the paintings is listed at https://ne150.org/events-programs/painting-the-legacy
Statewide events and programs for Nebraska’ sesquicentennial can be found here: https://ne150.org/programs-events

Lincoln is rich in its offerings of entertainment, no matter what your interests. The arts, family fun, history, sports, entertainment, the vital Haymarket area, and we even have the National Museum of Rollerskating. 

In June, Annette mentioned the writers in Mississippi. Nebraska has a wealth of writers as well. I just discovered Nicholas Sparks was born in Omaha.

A lifelong Nebraskan, Christian author, I have lived most of my life in the country, where I feel grounded in my sense of place. I learned to read when I was four and have devoured books since. I value one-on-one time with my grandchildren and love time spent with other writers. I cling to the word over-comer and the knowledge I have victory in Jesus. When I consider being set apart as a child of God, I am humbled. My Frivolities Series and other publications are available at Pelican Book Group http://tinyurl.com/kwz9enk  


I'm offering one lucky winner a print copy of Touches of Time.  Make sure to leave a form of contact so I can reach you if you're the winner!


  1. Very interesting reading for a Sunday morning, and I enjoyed meeting 2 new authors. I'm familiar with Ms Sweeney's work, and good work it is.

  2. Nebraska sounds lovely!
    Good luck and God's blessings to all 3 authors!

  3. I love the three different, yet wonderful, perspectives. Annette, your story brought a huge grin to my face. (That is a good thing, for I'm at work and have to be pleasant to the visitors who come in.)

    Tony, I also do a lot of my writing in winter. Just too much to do in the summer. We also have the 'construction' season here in Colorado. As the saying goes we have three seasons, construction, construction, construction and partial winter construction.

    Loree, I love the 'garden'. In Illinois, where I grew up, I heard the same phrase. We had lots of corn fields back there. I also can only imagine the history events and exhibits you all are having. A 'gold mine' for this history lover. Doris

  4. We love to stay in Kearney while on our way to Colorado:)

  5. Thanks. I love meeting new authors.

  6. Radine Trees NehringJuly 02, 2017

    Next to Fayetteville, AR, Omaha is my most favorite city! Loved attending "Mayhem in the Midlands" there and browsing/eating/shopping in the old section near the Embassy Suites where the convention was held. "The Lotus" saw me for purchases every year. Sure miss this.
    Ah, well! Radine

  7. Next to Fayetteville, AR, Omaha is my favorite city. When attending Mayhem in the Midlands I loved shopping/browsing/eating in the historic part of the city near the Embassy Suites where the conference was held. Sure miss this.

  8. AnonymousJuly 02, 2017

    Howdy all, I went to college in Nebraska--I'm a California girl--and I really enjoyed these peeks at a beautiful place! (I hope this posts...I'm having trouble commenting at blogs via my iPhone. My name is Tanya Hanson since it may come up Anonymous. Sheesh.)

  9. Annette, or should I say Queen of Garage Sales, I enjoyed the diversity of these posts.
    Toni, glad to learn a little about you. The Sunken Gardens is one of Lincoln's treasures.
    Just before July 1st, the corn next to our acreage tassled! There was a heavy rain Sunday morning and when I walked the dog, I smelled sweet corn.

  10. My husband is from Nebraska and he always teases me about moving back there even though we live in a beautiful part of Colorado. Loved the garage sale rendition about the sale of the collector's bottles. It's interesting how something that at first has no value to the seller suddenly becomes valuable. My own abbreviated version is when sorting my parents'condo unit for sale, I came across an enamel coated pan that was in a closet and not with the kitchen stuff. I debated its use...Thrift store? Dog food bowl? A woman from my parents' building came through to look the things I was getting rid of and offered me $5.00 and I said yes, only to discover later that the enamel coated cast iron pan was worth more than $100! Sellers regret? Or one person's treasure, another person's dog food bowl.


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