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About a year ago, I stumbled upon the book The Chicken Sisters by KJ Dell’Antonia as I looked for novels for my summer reading. It was part of Reese’s Book Club, so I gave the blurb on Amazon a click. The more I read, the more I knew I had to read this book. The setting of the book, two fried chicken restaurants in Merinac, Kansas, caught my eye. You see, we live about 45 minutes from two fried chicken restaurants, Chicken Annie’s and Chicken Mary’s, that sit right next door to each other near a small town in Southeast Kansas named Frontenac. So there it was. A book that obviously referenced a place that I’d known all my life. I was in! The book is a light, fun type of read, perfect for summertime. I enjoyed the story, but something else happened. Suddenly, I wanted to revisit these friend chicken…

Lately, I’ve had some time for extra reading, so I decided to read a couple of books related to Laura Ingalls Wilder. I’ve been a Laura fan since I was a girl, so I like to throw in some reading about her life every now and again. As I read, I was reminded of a little day trip we took one summer day to visit the Little House on the Prairie Museum near Independence, Kansas. A Couple of Books About Laura Ingalls Wilder The first was Caroline: Little House Revisited by Sarah Miller. This is a retelling of Little House on the Prairie from Ma’s point of view. Miller also used some facts that differ slightly from Wilder’s fictionalized version. It was an interesting take, but if you’ve read Little House on the Prairie as I had, you already know what main events will happen. I think that makes it…

If you’ve followed my “real life” at all, you’d know that I recently wrapped up directing the musical, The Little Mermaid, at the high school where I’ve been teaching for the past twelve years. As any director knows, the show still isn’t over after closing night. The set must be taken apart and all of the items you’ve rented or borrowed need to be returned. One of the items we borrowed, a rowboat for the “Kiss the Girl” scene, needed to be returned to Lee’s Summit, Missouri.  We opted to leave our youngest with Grandma and Grandpa for this road trip, and it was nice to have a day to ourselves.  After we made the delivery on a cool, blustery Saturday morning, my husband and I decided we needed some lunch. And that lunch should be Joe’s Kansas City Bar-B-Que. A Little Background We had not eaten at this place since…

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