Author Archives: Miss

Gardening Store to Check Out

Hi All,

We have a gardening store nearby that I noticed when I was out for my morning walk. If you’re in the neighborhood it’s worth checking out.

Garden City is set up in the parking lot at the corner of St Anthony Blvd and Industrial Blvd in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I hope you find something for your yard or patio. Happy flower watching in between book adventures.

Chainbreaker Ride Completed for Me on August 11, 2018

Hi,

I made it from start to 1.75 miles up 116 Feet with a pack that was well over a loaded grocery bag – 3 bottles of water and repair kit. We also had an air quality index over 101 which means high level of pollutions particles making breathing difficult for sensitive groups – those that have lungs that need clean air to function well.

There were over 1,000 riders at the event start coming from several states including a group from New York. I’m thankful for the volunteers helping us stay safe and rooting us on along the route.

All that donate to my site still will have 100% of their donations going to childhood cancer – the funds donated weren’t affected by how many miles I went on the day of the event. In my practices since starting in mid-July I’ve averaged about 20 miles a week at about 3 miles a day building up to 12 Miles the Saturday and Sunday before the event on August 11th. There were just too many factors against me at the event for me to get further but I’m glad I had the opportunity to try and to raise money for a good hospital, Masonic Children’s Hospital where keeping kids healthy and happy is job #1.

Thanks to all that helped me with donations and with a ride back to my car when I couldn’t catch my breath anymore. Take care everyone and feel free to use my website to donate to ending childhood cancer until October, 2018. MelissaBlanchardRide

My thanks to the 15 people who gave $400 to this cause. May we find a way to cure cancer especially for those that are our future – the children.

Keep on believing in the possibilities.

August 11, 2018 – 7 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Chainbreaker Biking Event in Minnesota – Donate to Combat Childhood Cancer

Hi All,

The Chainbreaker fight against childhood cancer bike ride is scheduled for August 11. I’m signed up for the 25 mile ride. All proceeds go to finding a cure for childhood cancer and to Masonic Children’s Hospital located in Minneapolis MN. If you’d like to help out here’s my website where you can contribute – safe and secure: Melissa Blanchard’s Site for Chainbreakerride.org

I have 12 donations so far with a total of $300 toward my goal to collect $1,000 to help children overcome a diagnosis of cancer.

Give if you can and positive thoughts and prayers as I participate in the biking event on August 11th 7 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. from Eagan to Hampton, Minnesota will be appreciated.

Here’s some pictures from my 27 + miles put in since last beginning my training for making the 25 mile trek:

Turn The Page Bookstore Anniversary Book signing Event Today in Boonsboro Maryland

Hi All,

It’s sunny and warm in Minneapolis Minnesota today.

I’m getting into shape for a 25 mile biking event for fund raising for childhood cancer research, otherwise I’d be in Boonsboro, Maryland today celebrating literacy, authors and readers at Turn The Page Bookstore Cafe.

Since 2013 I’ve enjoyed going to Boonsboro Maryland to meet authors enjoy one of the best brick and mortar bookstore I’ve ever visited. I hope if you’re in the area you’ll take some time to check out Turn The Page Bookstore and celebrate literacy with other readers and authors.

If you can’t be there in person you can online shop at a safe and secure website Turn The Page Bookstore Cafe

I hope all are having great weather in Boonsboro, Maryland like we have here in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

I made it over 5 miles on my bike this morning and up and down hills too. If you want to support my cancer fundraiser which is also a way for me to get healthier too by jump starting my daily work outs with walking or biking here’s my link:

Fairview Health Services Team Member Melissa Blanchard for Chainbreakerride.org

100% of the proceeds go to cancer research and a hospital I’m proud to work for Masonic Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Fairview Team of Nurses, Doctors, and Computer support make a difference in helping children heal.

Enjoy the day.

Sincerely,

Melissa Blanchard

Spring Reading Ideas

Hi All,

The green is appearing once again in Minnesota so its time to bring some Spring reading ideas.

Here’s the latest from one one of my favorite authors:

Lindsay’s Book Chat

I’m enjoying a mystery thriller that makes you think of things that go bump in the night and laugh out loud at some at Kathy Reichs’s witticisms in her book “Deja Dead”. I like the audiobook so the narrator Barbara Rosenblat is also a favorite of mine. It’s like listening to a one woman play very well done.

Smile Amazon Deja Dead Book Link

If you use Amazon and audible for your audiobook purchases remember to link to Smile.amazon.com where you can pick the charity of your choice while getting much enjoyment from all the products available on Amazon.

Take some time today to begin a new book and take an arm chair journey to places near and far.

Reading is fundamental to leaning about the world around you and the many personalities all around you.

Sincerely,

Melissa Blanchard

I Recommend Murder on the Orient Express [Movie Tie-in] by Agatha Christie, narrated by Kenneth Branagh

Hi All,

I love a good mystery and Agatha Christie is a favorite author of mine.

I saw this audiobook on Amazon when I was looking for something new to listen too. I was not disappointed.

It seems like every generation of fine actors come together to adapt this book to a movie script and this time they have a another great cast to add their interpretation to this masterpiece of suspense and intrigue.

This cast is all star for the movie and Kenneth Branagh does an excellent narration for the audiobook as well as play the lead in the movie.

I rented the movie from Xfinity too and I’m enjoying it on a cold winter’s night in Minneapolis MN. That’s right snow fall and cold conditions in April here in Minnesota. I hope you enjoy the book and the movie and if you’re in the path of the Minnesota snow storm you’ll be able to relate to those souls on the train trapped by snow.

Here’s a link for the audiobook:

Murder on the Orient Express via Audible

Share Love of Books and Enjoy Wonderful Accommodations at Inn BoonsBoro

Hi All,

I’ve had the beautiful opportunity of staying at the Inn BoonsBoro in Boonsboro, Maryland, last September, 2017.

The rooms celebrate some the great literary works of our times. In keeping with the book stylizing, the guest rooms stay true to the building’s original function and design as an Inn for travelers from 1700 Maryland.

They also have modern conveniences with free refreshments, baked goods and common area activities from games to movie/TV viewing to chatting about what we all love that visit Boonsboro for Book Signing events – books and those that make them possible the authors.

Next door you can get 5 star food at Dan’s Restaurant and Taphouse or across the street is a really terrific pizza or pasta place at Vesta Pizzeria and Family Restaurant.

For me I found the Inn a wonderful place to rest and share my love of books and have some freshly backed chocolate chip gluten free cookies, after a long hike at Antietam and the National Civil War Cemetery. Both National parks are within a 15 minute drive from the Inn. To see pictures from my September trip follow this link to my photo blog: September, 2017 Maryland Vacation Trip Highlights In Pictures 2 – Antietam National Cemetery 150th Anniversary & Inn Boonsboro Stay

The bathroom facilities were awesome too, 5 headed showers with a rain head – just like being in a gentle rain. They also had a full bath with a place to prop your book while you soaked away the days cares.

I hope to go to the Inn again in 2018. It’s a magical place attracting book and history loving people. Maybe I’ll see you there some day.

Check out this link: InnBoonsBoro 18th Century Inn and More for more event information for the Spring and you can sign up for their Newsletter too. A bit of peace and dreaming for your weekend reading.

Below are some pictures from my stay in September, 2017. Sincerely helpful staff and beautifully appointed guest rooms and shared areas make for a wonderfully restful visit. There’s a special Gifts Inn Boonsboro Inc right across the street – so be sure to stop in and get some special art, pottery or nicknack to remember your visit. All very well done and worth the trip.

Enjoy.

“Leonard”

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“Leonard:  My Fifty-Year Friendship with A Remarkable Man”

By William Shatner with David Fisher.

I recommend this book as a journey of life encompassing a shared career and friendship between actors that I enjoyed growing up.

Listening to Mr. Shatner’s excellent narration to share his love of Leonard Nimoy was a privilege and a priceless gift of insight into what makes a career and friendship.

I am a Star Trek fan growing up and in my 55 years of enjoying Mr. Shatner and Mr. Nimoy in all their many roles I found this book a gift that helped me to see the beauty of pursing a career and how it impacts living life to the fullest.

I’m thankful that I took the time to listen to this well written book.

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Turn The Page Book Signing Event September 16th

Turn The Page Book Store Cafe Website

Hi Book Lovers,

Above is a link to the next Turn The Page Book Signing Event coming up on Saturday, September 16th, 2017.

The list of best selling authors attending is awesome with:

All excellent writers with local authors that are always interesting.

This book signing is also on the same weekend of the 150th Anniversary of the Antietam National Cemetery. See this link for more information on this event: Antietam Battlefield Post on Facebook

See this link also for those not on Facebook:

National Park Service Website

The Antietam National Cemetery is a short 15 minute drive from Turn The Page Bookstore Cafe in Boonsboro, Maryland.

I was just at Nora Roberts July Book Signing event which inspired me to return for the 150th Anniversary events at Antietam as well in September. I’m glad both the book signing and the Antietam events are on the same weekend. I was also able to get reservation for Nora’s Inn in Boonsboro too for the Antietam event.

After visiting the sites and authors in Boonsboro area I’m heading over to Parkton Maryland to see the Ocean and the Assateague State Park. Here’s a link to learn more about the park:

Assateague State Park

There’s so much to do and see in Maryland and the surrounding states, I hope you all will be able to swing a trip soon. I’m grateful to Nora Roberts for sharing her knowledge of Civil War history in her books and her book signing events. Not only is she an excellent fiction writer but she does great travelogues too follow this link to find out about her latest trip adventures:

Nora Roberts Website

Turn the Page Bookstore is a worthy vacation spot. Great displays of books, helpful service and friendly staff make every moment a special one.

I hope to see you in Boonsboro Maryland the weekend of September 16th, 2017.

Sincerely,

Melissa Blanchard

I Recommend “All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel


Hi All,

I had the opportunity to listen to the audiobook, "All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel".

The writing is fabulous. To see the world through the experiences of a blind girl is unique and inspiring.

The author also brings out the struggles of orphans and how one boy, full of potential, wants more than mining for a life long career but finds he must choose good over evil at a very young age.

The narrator, Zach Appelman, did an excellent job reading with the emotion of each person in the novel while keeping faithful to the emotion of every scene. His voice is a comfort even when it must convey the horror of the inhumanity in many of the tableaux of evil and death.

In order to tell the story, there's a need for violence in this book, but the joy and perseverance in the beautiful people in this novel out weighs those that do violence and bring about death and humiliation.

As in art, there are many shades needed to bring out the beauty of a sunrise so to this book brings to this reader the value of seeing the full picture before making a decision. I hope you find the beauty in the telling of this story. There's so much about strength of character documented in the blind girl and her father – the true love shown brings healing to the heart and mind.

Sincerely,
Melissa Blanchard