Feed a Cold, Starve a Fever – @oddlynn3 #LynnCrain #HSGBlog

Bet you’re wondering where I’m going with this…aren’t you?

First, let me apologize for this being late but to be honest from the title, you can probably tell where I was at. The weekend before this one was beautiful here in New Mexico. We were getting temperatures up to 80 degrees and were spending more time outside. Unfortunately for me, being outside means I have to deal with allergies. Since I’ve done that for twenty years, not problem. Except this time, it wouldn’t go away.

Matter of fact, I found myself feeling worse and worse every day. This is bad since my husband is on chemo and supposed to stay away from people like me. So, by mid-week, I was feeling horrid and started sleeping in the guest room and downing cold remedies night and day. The weather had also took a turn and on Thursday this past week, we had four inches of snow.

I know that was part of why I got ill as I always do with drastic weather changes. Whenever, I’d go from the desert to Austria, I’d get a slight cold. Anytime I was in a place with more humidity, I’d come back to the desert and get a cold. It was just part of me being me.

However, this time, I told my husband I was going to feed my cold because I didn’t have a fever. Or at least, I thought not. Still, it got me wondering about some of the clichés we use when talking about specific things. Here are just a few that I seem to use a lot.

  1. Feed a Cold, Starve a Fever – This can be traced to John Withals in 1574, who noted that ‘fasting was a great remedy of fever.’ The original thought was that when you had a cold, if you ate you generated warmth thus avoiding your body overheating. Recent science however, refutes the fact and says that you should actually feed both.
  2. Hell in a handbasket – This basically means heading for a course of disaster. It’s really unknown where this comes from but it is thought that it refers to the handbaskets used under a guillotine where the head drops. It was first noted in Samuel Sewall’s Diary in 1714. Another euphemism was ‘Going to heaven in a wheelbarrow’ which actually meant ‘going to hell’ in the 17th The handbasket version came about in 19th century American
  3. Eggs in one basket – This is something many parents tell their kids, financial advisors tell there clients and so on. It’s a piece of advice meant to dissuade us from concentrating all our efforts and resources in one area. But did you know that the phrase actually came from the novel Don Quixote? Here’s the quote, written by Miguel Cervantes in 1605 “It is the part of a wise man to keep himself today for tomorrow, and not venture all his eggs in one basket.”
  4. A piece of cake – This is often used to describe an easy situation. The idea originated in 1870s America when cakes were given out as prizes for winning a competition. There was a tradition in slave states where the slaves would circle around a cake in the middle and the pair who danced in the most graceful manner would be awarded the cake. From that period, the terms ‘cake walk’ and ‘piece of cake’ originated.
  5. Let sleeping dogs lie – This idiom is derived from a long-standing observations that dogs are often unpredictable when suddenly disturbed. Chaucer was one of the first to put the notion in print in Troilus and Criseyde, circa 1380, though the belief is said to be much older: “It is nought good a slepyng hound to wake.” However, the phrase became more associated with 18th century British politician Sir Robert Walpole and was his motto. It also should be noted, that this may have started in the Bible itself with this quote from Proverbs 26:17: He that passes by, and meddles with strife belonging not to him, is like one that takes a dog by the ears.
  6. Take it with a grain of salt – This comes from the fact that food is more easily swallowed if a small amount of salt is added to the mixture. In 77 A.D., Pliny the Elder translated an ancient antidote for poison that had the words ‘be taken fasting, plus a grain of salt’ thus giving the suggestion that an injurious effect can be moderated with just a grain of salt. It has been in the English speaking world since 1647 when John Trapp wrote the Commentary on the Old and New Testaments where he stated: This is to be taken with a grain of salt. More recently, the phrase has become ‘pinch of salt’ and was noted in Cicero & the Roman Republic, written in 1948 by F.R. Cowell.

I can go on all day with idioms and finding their meanings. They are one things they tell us writers not to use but in all honesty, it says a lot about where a character comes from and their state of mind.

Hopefully, you enjoyed this little foray into the idiom world. See you all next month!

About Lynn Crain

Award winning author Lynn Crain has done it all in her life. From nursing to geology, her life experiences have added to her detail rich stories. She loves writing full time as she weaves contemporary, fantasy, futuristic and paranormal tales, tame to erotic, for various publishers. Her home is in the desert southwest and she’s just returned from her latest adventure of living in Vienna, Austria while her husband worked his dream job. You can find her hanging out online at www.lynncrain.blogspot.com, https://www.facebook.com/LynnCrainAuthor, and on Twitter, @oddlynn3. She loves hearing from her readers at lynncrain@cox.net.

Location, Location…

If you’ve read my books, you’ll know I like to set them in locations slightly off the beaten path–very few Mayfair ballrooms for me! Stirring Up the Viscount takes place largely in County Durham, England, where I spent a year in college. Secret Promise characters can be found in Boston, where my mother lives, an island in Lake Erie an hour or two from my house, and Wallsend and Tynemouth in Northumberland, inspired by this photo of Tynemouth Priory:

Tynemouth Priory. Photo by Chris McKenna (Thryduulf) via Wikimedia Commons

My third book, which I’ve just finished–finally–takes place in Maine, inspired in part by this gorgeous painting by Frederic Edwin Church in the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Twilight in the Wilderness (1860), by Frederic Edwin Church. Cleveland Museum of Art.

Dalemain House, Penrith, Cumbria. (Source: VisitCumbria.com.)

 

My next book is unrelated to my first three, and takes place in a location inspired by own family tree. My paternal grandmother’s ancestors hailed–some five centuries ago–from Kendal, England. Formerly in the County of Westmoreland and now part of Cumbria, Kendal lies just south of the more famous Lake District. The heroine in the book is an heiress from Kendal, and might live in a Georgian home like this one.

 

Levens Hall, Kendal, Cumbria. (Source: BritainExpress.com)

Or possibly  a 12th century house like this one, which was owned by the Bellingham family from 1562 to 1688. If my family history is accurate–no guarantees there–there are Bellinghams in my family tree.  I’m hoping to head over that way this summer (assuming I don’t sell my house, which looks less likely with each passing day) to tromp through graveyards in search of ancestors, and soak up atmosphere for the next book.

What inspires you in your writing or your reading? Any ideas where I should set the next book? I’m always on the lookout for the next great location!

About Marin McGinnis

About Marin McGinnis Clevelanders are tough, a bit cynical, and just a little crazy, and Marin McGinnis is no exception. When she’s not chasing after big dogs or watching tweens skate around hockey rinks, she is immersing herself in Victorian era romance. She lives in Northeast Ohio with her husband, son, and two standard poodles named Larry and Sneaky Pete. You can find her here, at marinmcginnis.com, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Pinterest.

Guest Post – Cynthia Owens

Back to School
By Cynthia Owens

Whenever I think of “Back to School,” so many images come to mind. Walks to school through crisply crunching autumn leaves. New teachers, classmates. New books in the school library. Pencils, pens and notebooks. New challenges.

This year, back-to-school will be a little bit different. This year my beautiful daughter will take the first step into adulthood when she starts college on August 21.

So many firsts, and all of them heart-wrenching. On her first day of pre-school, I’m not sure who shed more tears, me or her! When she started kindergarten, I was a little bit more prepared…though not much. By the time she got to high school, she and I were both looking forward to it…okay, well, she more than I, but I think we were both ready for the new adventure.

And now she’s a lovely young woman embarking on a new phase in her life. I’m grateful she’s going to be commuting every day…I’m definitely not ready for her to move out on her own, though I know that day will eventually come, and sooner than I’m prepared for it.

Many people think of autumn and the back-to-school season as the end of things. The dying of the year, the end of the summer. But I’ve always thought of it as an exciting time, and yes, even a romantic time. Cooler air is just made for cuddling by a sweet-smelling fire, and I love the smell and the sound of fallen leaves, especially at night, when the moon is a glorious golden orb hanging low in the sky.

Lydia Daniels and Shane MacDermott think autumn is a pretty romantic time, too. In fact, they had their very first kiss on a bright autumn day under a canopy of watermelon-red, lemon-yellow and pumpkin orange leaves.

*~*~*

Deceptive HeartsHer breath caught in her throat, making her feel dizzy and faint. The blazing canopy of leaves above her whirled crazily. “Please,” she whispered, wondering what she begged for. “Oh, don’t…”

In an instant he was beside her, his arm sliding around her shoulders. The heat of his body seared her to her very soul as she sank into the depths of his obsidian eyes. She felt the strength in his arm, in his hand. But he wasn’t threatening or intimidating. Instead he emanated a quiet, gentle, strength, almost caring, almost…tender.

“Are you all right, lass?”

His voice! Slightly gravelly, mellow, filled with concern. She stared up at him, and felt as if she were falling. Falling from some incredible height, knowing he’d be there to catch her. Falling into a soft web of gentleness, of caring, that she’d never known before.

“I-I am so sorry.”

“Ah, you needn’t be.” Humor laced his tone, and suddenly he smiled again, an endearing glint of mischief dancing in his eyes. “What man doesn’t want to play the hero to such a lovely lass as yourself?”

He thought her lovely! She despised herself for the little thrill that trembled in her heart, but she couldn’t help it. He was so compelling, so warm, so utterly masculine. He was gentle. She knew better than to trust such a man, she knew she did.

And yet…

“And what man doesn’t want to hold a beautiful woman in his arms?” His voice roughened, one hand reaching out to touch her cheek.

Despite herself, she flinched.

His hand paused in mid-air. “Don’t be afraid.” His voice flowed over and around her, making the sun filtering through the leaves of the trees seem brighter, the blue October sky seem bluer, the crisp, smoky air sweeter. “I mean you no harm, Lydia, I swear I don’t.”

He’d caught her up in his spell. “Then what do you mean, Shane MacDermott?”

He moved closer, closer, until she could feel the warm, moist whisper of his breath on her cheek. “This.”

He lowered his mouth to hers, capturing her lips in a kiss so sweet and so gentle that it stole her breath, filled her with warmth, and chased away her fears. His hand came up to stroke her cheek, his touch feather-light against her skin. His callused fingers scraped her flesh, thrillingly abrasive. Her heart pounded against her chest.

And she felt no fear at all. There was no harshness in Shane’s touch, no brutal invasion of her mouth, her body, her very soul. This…why this was comfort. This was warmth and tenderness and caring.

He raised his mouth. “Lydia,” he muttered, his breathing unsteady. “You’re so sweet. Sweeter than ripe strawberries. Sweeter than honey. Your hair…” He ran his fingers through the locks she’d allowed to escape, making her wish she’d loosed it all. “’Tis like the finest silk. Your skin…” He stroked her cheek, and she shuddered with pleasure. “’Tis the softest velvet. Your taste…” His tongue licked over her skin, sending lightning bolts of heat dancing through her. “I want to devour you.” His lips moved to caress her cheek, nuzzle her hair, skate over her collarbone, sending shivers of delight through her entire being.

This was insane. It was folly to allow her hands to slide up the strong, corded muscles of his arms. It was absolute madness to sink her fingers into the rough, dark curls at his nape, to press closer to him, absorb the warmth of his body with her own.

But she did. She breathed in his spicy scent, lost herself in his strength. She stroked the back of his neck and gloried in the harsh groan that rumbled through him. His hands slid around her waist, bunching in the fabric of her gown, pulling her closer, and closer still.

“Shane…” Her body trembled with desire, her entire being in thrall to his magic. “Shane…”

As if the sound of her voice had poured a bucket of cold water over him, Shane jerked away from her, his face accusing. Jumping up from the bench, he stalked a few paces away, his breathing harsh. “It seems you’ve a way of turnin’ a man’s thoughts from his purpose, so you have.”

*~*~*

DSCN1026I believe I was destined to be interested in history. One of my distant ancestors, Thomas Aubert, reportedly sailed up the St. Lawrence River to discover Canada some 26 years before Jacques Cartier’s 1534 voyage. Another relative was a 17thCentury “King’s Girl,” one of a group of young unmarried girls sent to New France (now the province of  Quebec) as brides for the habitants (settlers) there. My passion for reading made me long to write books like the ones I enjoyed, and I tried penning sequels to my favorite Nancy Drew mysteries. Later, fancying myself a female version of Andrew Lloyd Weber, I drafted a musical set in Paris during WWII. A former journalist and lifelong Celtophile, I enjoyed a previous career as a reporter/editor for a small chain of community newspapers before returning to my first love, romantic fiction. My stories usually include an Irish setting, hero or heroine, and sometimes all three. I’m the author of The Claddagh Series, historical romances set in Ireland and beyond. The first three books in The Claddagh Series, In Sunshine or in Shadow, Coming Home, and Playing For Keeps, are all available from Highland Press. Deceptive Hearts, the first book in The Wild Geese Series, has just been released, and Book II, Keeper of the Light,will soon be published by Highland Press. I am a member of the Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, and Celtic Hearts Romance Writers. A lifelong resident of Montreal, Canada, I still live there with my own Celtic hero and our two teenaged children.

You can find Cynthia and her books on her webpage, and most online book retailers:

Website
Facebook
Twitter

**Thank you so much to Cynthia for sharing her life with us. Please take the time to leave a comment for her. All comments will be entered to win a $10 Amazon Gift Card! Happy September!!**

About Beth Rhodes

Beth jumps into life with both feet...or head first. Impulsive and spontaneous to a T, she joined Passionate Critters and never looked back. She loves writing and reading, which made this wonderful group of woman a perfect match for her.

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