Books by Carolyn Rae

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Food for the Hungry

Tarrant County Foodbank distributes fresh food at the First Methodist Church of Hurst on the second Friday of each month. This time over 300 came. I handed out sweet potatoes and told people they could cook them for six minutes in a microwave. Volunteers came from Tyson, AT&T, and the Awareness Project. I asked the representative standing next to me what they did. He said they give food regularly to the homeless, and twice a year, they offer shoes and socks.

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Old Tree Becomes St. Francis Statue

At 79 years old, after having 4 heart bypass operations, Carroll Gant of Hurst, Texas, decided he wouldn’t let that stop him from being active. He had to cut down a tree in his back yard, but he decided to make something of it. He could honor St. Francis by carving a statue of him.

I saw this as I perused a garage sale on my daily walk and asked him about it. Now 84, he  told me October 4th was St. Francis Day. He showed me the stigmata on the hands and the wolf he’d carved from a log from the tree to stand beside the statue. He’d also carved a bird sitting on the statue’s arm and a duck standing nearby.



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Teaching English

Last Saturday I volunteered to help in an ESL (English as a Second Language) class. Students were originally from Mexico or The Democratic Republic of Congo, and spoke mainly Spanish or French. The student I helped was a woman from The Democratic Republic of Congo and spoke French. I could see her frustration as she tried to think of words to answer my questions. (I took French in high school long ago, but wasn’t about to try using it.) English to French and English to Spanish dictionaries were on each table. In response to the teacher’s question, “What does respect mean?” my student looked it up.

Vicki Ingle, the teacher, spoke clearly and enthusiastically. She asked them to tell what they liked and disliked. She explained “dislike” meant the same as “do not like.”

Then she had each student ask another classmate questions and write down their name, description, likes, dislikes, and language spoken. After that, each student stood and told the class that information about the person they spoke to. Each one was able to speak clearly and give the information.

Teacher Vicki Ingle asking class members to tell what they liked.


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Forgot to Smell the Roses

This is the last day of summer. I wanted to attend the RWA National Conference, visit a friend and my brother and sister in Florida, swim in the ocean, read some books, and plant flowers in my whiskey barrel half.

I made it to the conference, visited my friend and my brother and sister and even visited an interesting estate on a Florida bay, but did I swim in the ocean? No time.

Bay view from Deering Mansion

Courtyard in the Deering Mansion

Home again I finally caught up on writing my novel, so I can swim in the city pool. After all, it may be September, but it’s been 90 degrees or more every day.  I put on my bathing suit, grabbed a beach towel, and drove to Chisholm pool on the north side of Hurst. It was closed! 😦  I drove to the other pool. Closed also. 😦 Don’t they know it’s still summer?

I did read books I got at the conference. My rose bush won’t bloom. Then I looked at my whiskey barrel half with the remains of my dead petunias that a squirrel dug up. I need to visit Calloway’s Nursery for advice.  After all, it stays warm until December, but I’m not planting another batch of pansies for that squirrel to dig up again. Maybe I’ll do that winter cabbage like plant and hope he doesn’t like the smell.


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Entertainment for Storm Victims

I delivered over one hundred books for victims of Hurricane Harvey.  Evacuees can entertain themselves with mysteries, young adult books, romances, or romantic suspense books from authors David Baldacci, Alex Cross, Cindy Dees, Lara Lacombe, Kara Lennox, Robin Perini, Delores Fossen, Nora Roberts, B. J. Daniels, Jane Graves, Kay Thomas, and others.

Collecting was easy. My Word Wranglers critique group loaded my car.  I knew right where the Kay Bailey Hutchinson Dallas Convention Center was. I drove past the life-size sculptures of cattle being herded to market, but then I couldn’t figure out which door to park next to.  I didn’t want make several long trips to carry everything. After being turned away and given nebulous directions, I finally found the volunteer desk outside. They said I should take the books to the Potter House and gave me directions to a place several miles outside the Dallas City limits.   When I finally got there, I was thankful to have helpful men unload the big box, shopping bag, and two plastic bags full of book

Books to escape with


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Florida and the RWA Conference

I took a break from the RWA Conference and walked past the shops along the boardwalk. I ducked into one and couldn’t resist buying a Tinker Bell charm for my bracelet. All sorts of snacks were available – at higher than grocery store prices, so I decided to wait for supper. I was glad I did because the Salmon and Asian noodle salad in the hotel restaurant was delicious.

The Boardwalk near Disney World





The view from my window at Disney World Dolphin Hotel


Watching swimmers have fun from my hotel room window, I wished I had brought a swim suit. There were cute little boats to ride on a miniature lake off to the left.



My sister is a prolific painter

After the conference, I visited my sister in Sun City Center and worked with her son, Cousin Vinny, on his book, The Devil’s Glove.



Next I visited my brother, Ray, in Fort Lauderdale. He drove me to the Deering Estate, now a museum with a huge mansion and formal gardens with fountains. They were so scenic, photographers were taking pictures of models in flowing evening gowns. One garden had purple and yellow orchids. Each room in the three-story mansion was large and well furnished, even the maid’s room.

Courtyard in the Deering Mansion


While I didn’t get to swim in the ocean, I soaked up lots of sun and knowledge from the conference, as well as a request for a novel proposal.



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