Monday, October 28, 2013

Hometown Monday - K is for Karen, Kayla, Kevin, and Kim

Hometown Monday - K is for Karen, Kayla, Kevin, and Kim

We are continuing this series of posts of excerpts from the novels, novellas, and short stories of "The Homeplace Saga" family story-telling, with a new twist. We have adopted a format from the: "Blogging From A to Z Challenge." Each week we will share a published except related to a person whose name begins with that letter. 

This series of posts is to provide an insight into the story lines that may not be clear from other promotional pieces about "The Homeplace Saga." These will also be coordinated with the content of the developmental Wiki, "Beyond the Books" - to expand the information available there, as well. [Links in the text, below, provide more information on that person or entity]

Today we look at names beginning with the letter J - our most numerous first letter given name.

For K, we have (with one long excerpt, below):

Karen (Bevins) Winslow - major character, she opens "Christmas at the Homeplace," see below.

Kayla Inman - daughter of Travis and Laura Inman - he has not yet seen her in person, as "Christmas at the Homeplace" story begins...

Kevin Winslow -  youngest son of Karen - see excerpt, below

Kim Stone - Niece of Christopher Ogden

Today, we start using excerpts from our latest novel, "Christmas at the Homeplace," which was just released on Friday, October 25, 2013, now available at… for Christmas purchases:

[Click to go to Amazon page]

This excerpt is the opening of Chapter One from "Christmas at the Homeplace" is from Tuesday, October 22, 1996:

“My primary goal, right now, is to finally have all four of my children here, together, at once, for Christmas this year, 1996, for the first time since the funeral of their father in the summer of 1993.” Karen Bevins Winslow realized, as soon as she spoke the words, that she was speaking as much to herself as to her good friend and neighbor, Virginia Hollingsworth. 

They had returned to Karen’s Homeplace Country Inn apartment following the all-day October meeting of the Bevins Trust. This had been Virginia’s last meeting as a trustee having retired after serving all ten years of the existence of the trust set up after the death of Karen’s mother, Mildred McDonald Bevins.  Virginia had been a life-long friend of Mildred and a nearby country neighbor, as well. 

Virginia, thinking her friend Karen would mention something relating to her new role as Chair of the Bevins Trust Board of Trustees, had asked what was next in her life. So, after a moment of hesitation, she smiled and replied, “Good for you. I certainly hope and assume that goal will be met. Kevin did say he was coming, didn’t he?”

“Yes he did,” Karen responded, sitting her teacup down. “But he is so dedicated to that research project of his, I am still worried that something will happen to keep him in Tucson.” Since she and Jason had moved from Tucson, Arizona, to Oak Springs, Missouri, in 1987, their youngest son, Kevin, had finished high school, graduated from the University of Arizona and earned his PhD in Optical Sciences there. 

He was now a Research Scientist working on an important government-funded research project in Tucson in a university-related research lab. “I just must have faith, and keep in regular touch with him so that he does not get too involved at work, again, to keep him away this time.”

“I’m sure Matt and the girls will help you, as well.” Virginia wanted to be supportive, but also didn’t like to see Karen putting the entire onus on herself for this goal she had set. Sitting at the kitchen table in the apartment, they continued to talk about the plans Karen was making.

Matt was Karen’s oldest son, now 34, and Kevin her youngest at 26. The girls, Lori, 32, and Erin, 29, had come to her and Jason in between the two boys. Matt and his wife, Susie, had moved to Oak Springs from the Boston area earlier this year, in time to get their son, Tyler, enrolled in first grade. Tyler’s little sister was three-year-old Emily.

Virginia asked Karen, “Have you talked to either of your girls, lately?”

“I talk to Lori about every week or ten days, depending on her flight schedules. She knows I like to know where she is.” Lori became an airline flight attendant right out of college. Based in Los Angeles, her flights took her just about anywhere her airline flew. “It’s been a couple of weeks since I talked to Erin, actually… I should give her a call, get the latest on her pregnancy.” Mark and Erin now lived in Austin, Texas. 

“You were pretty excited when you got that news, I recall,” Virginia teased. “When they arrived for their Labor Day visit and Erin shared her news, I thought you were going to fly away on the wings of happiness, young lady!”

Karen beamed. “Yes, I suppose I might have. I knew how happy she and Mark were, and that made her 62-year-old mother very happy as well. Being a grandmother for the third time is still pretty special, at least to this one. The one sad note, of course, is that Jason isn’t here to enjoy it as well. He was so pleased to be a Grandpa when Tyler arrived. He was gone a few months before Emily joined us, of course.”

Jason Winslow had died in a car crash returning from Jefferson City on company business in early June of 1993. Emily was born late in September of that year.

"May each of us have a Homeplace to hold onto, if only in our minds."

Bill  ;-)

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