Plotting a Poisoning

What finally drives someone to murder? Passion, anger, jealousy? What kind of person uses poison to commit the deed? Of course, someone who likes to plan! Someone who knows their way around the kitchen maybe? Or the garden? Or an antique shop? Or garage sale?

A is for Arsenic

According to Lucy Zahray, aka The Poison Lady, any number of sinister plants, herbs, and elements can be used to “cut the threads of life”. Looking for arsenic? Go to an antique shop or garage sale and buy fly paper. Yeah, grandma had arsenic hanging around the kitchen in the form of fly paper.

Arsenic Fly Paper

Or, how about that mixed green salad that hubby insisted he make for you this evening? Are you sure, he hasn’t mixed in some datura seeds masquerading as red pepper flakes?

How about some red pepper flakes?

Have you guessed? I’m working some poison into my latest Star O’Brien County Mayo Mystery Series? Still deciding how and whom but I’m a planner so who knows how I’ll sneak the pinch of toxin into the mix. You’ll have to read the book!

Thank you so much for reading my blog post today. I hope you enjoyed it. Please use the buttons below to share with your friends. If you haven’t already, sign up for my newsletter with stories and updates about Star O’Brien’s adventures in County Mayo, Ireland.

Ireland’s Autumn Equinox and Book Giveaway

Hello Star O’Brien fans, click on over to my blog post to learn about my autumn equinox book giveaway.

If you’re like me, it’s been a year in which finding balance was and continues to be challenging. But looking to our Irish roots and the ancient Celts for guidance, I’m celebrating the autumn equinox (when there is an equal amount of day and night) by thinking about how to find more balance in my life.

So, Star O’Brien fans, let me know how you plan to find some balance in your life (by posting in the blog’s comment section at the bottom of the page) and I’ll choose one random winner (on Tuesday, September 22) to receive a free ebook format of the first two books in the Star O’Brien series. http://martha-geaney.com/books

Loughcrew, County Meath is home to a series of cairns, dated back 4000 years B.C.. It is believed that Neolithic farmers built the series of passages topped by mounds of stone. Interestingly, the cairns align with the rising sun of the autumn equinox.

Image of two people standing atop one of the cairns at Loughcrew, County Meath, Ireland
Loughcrew, County Meath
Image of an apple orchard in Ireland during autumn harvest time.

For later generations of farmers, like some of my grandparents and great grandparents, the autumn equinox celebrated the nearing completion of harvest and the hope for bountiful crops in storage for the winter months.

So, here’s what I plan to do…enjoy the early sunrises and start my day with appreciation for life. Carve out a few minutes each evening to enjoy the sunset and be grateful for the people in my life. What do you plan to do? What helps you find balance these days?

Thank you so much for reading my blog post today. I hope you enjoyed it. Please use the buttons below to share with your friends. If you haven’t already, sign up for my newsletter with stories and updates about Star O’Brien’s adventures in County Mayo, Ireland.

Autumn Days in Ireland

And all at once, summer collapsed into fall.

Oscar Wilde

September 1 marks the beginning of autumn in Ireland. It’s a time when the weather can be beautiful. Cooler but not too cool. Or blustery towards the evening. All good as far as I’m concerned whether it’s a walk along Barney Road in French Hill or a hike along the Wild Atlantic Way.

Sheep grazing in a field.
Field along Barney Road, French Hill

Just one year ago this week, Bill and I were in County Mayo, Ireland. It was a wonderful ten days. A time when I got to see cousins and friends at my book signing.

Of course, there was the daily trip to Cafe Rua on Spencer Street for coffee and a sweet for my sweet, Bill.

Bill at Cafe Rua

One year later, the world has changed. For many, the changes are drastic, tragic, and on some days incomprehensible. But for now, I am grateful for my life, my family, and the blessings we have. I hope all who follow and read my blog can find a moment of peace.

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Strength and Courage

Memory…is the diary we all carry around with us.

-Oscar Wilde

Back in New Jersey this week. Happy to hear the wind in the trees. The sound is soft and shuffling. In Florida, the wind in the palm trees sounds like ocean waves gently caressing the beach. There’s an abundance of greenery and woods around my mom’s house where we are visiting with her.

Mom turned 90 in June and because of the virus, we were unable to get to New Jersey to be with her. Sadly, my mom was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease this week. And, so virus or not we flew from Florida to New Jersey.

Having dinner with Mom

Mom’s beginning to show the first signs in the evening (what doctors call sun downing). We are trying to create a peaceful, calm environment each night after dinner. When it’s time to go to bed, I lay down with her for a while. And, that’s when my mom is the best. We talk about her parents and our lives. My mom is from County Mayo, Ireland, the setting for my County Mayo mystery series. Mom tells me she is afraid. She hears voices. The voices say the names of her family, her siblings (all have passed away). I tell her that she doesn’t have to afraid. I am here. I tell her that the voices will pass in a minute. We’ve decided to call the voices a bubble. And the bubble will burst shortly and she won’t be afraid. So when she starts hearing the voices, I say I think that is the bubble. And we brush the bubble away. We agreed that we are going to try to get into what I call a “grooving groove”. I want to care for my mom. I hope I have the strength and courage to get through this time. That we will be in a grooving groove for a while yet.

I’m sure some of you are caring for a parent or a loved one who is experiencing this disease. I’m scared; not like my mom is scared. I’m afraid I don’t have what it takes to care for her and Bill. But, we are going to try. I’m going to draw on my deep Irish roots. So, tomorrow morning before Bill and my mom get up, I will stand outside for a while and listen to the wind. Then I’ll take a deep breath and go back inside to jump into the grooving groove.

Photo by Steven Hylands on Pexels.com

Thank you so much for reading my blog post today. I hope you enjoyed it. Please use the buttons below to share with your friends. If you haven’t already, sign up for my newsletter with stories and updates about Star O’Brien’s adventures in County Mayo, Ireland.