Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Heat Wave

It's been a summer for the record books here in the middle of the U.S., and I'd really like to say goodbye to it.  How hot was it?  It was the fifth hottest summer on record for Wichita, Kansas, since 1888.  Our temps were in the 100s, while our heat index reached as high as 111 one day.  And, of course, my a/c decided to go out during the first part of it.  I was every so grateful when it was fixed again!

But it hasn't been a bad summer, in spite of the heat.  Before the really hot weather hit, the grandkids and I walked to a nearby park most mornings (pictured).  Later, when the temps started going up, they were excited to try the interactive fountains at another park, where kids are allowed to play and get as wet as they can.  We visited the city's water treatment center, complete with fun crafts for the kids.  They even fed ducks and geese their lunches, more than once.  Because school started on Monday, and I'd promised them a return trip to one of the big parks, we did that last Friday.  The plan was to take the 30 minute pedal boat ride, but not for me to do most of the pedaling!  When we finished that, they talked me into 18 holes of miniature golf.  Heat index by the time we drove back home?  105 degrees.  But we not only survived, we had fun!

We're hoping there'll be no more heat waves, but if there are, we have plans to go ice skating soon!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Facebook and blogging and tweets—oh, my!

Just last month, I took the plunge into the world of social media by adding a blog to my completely revamped website. And now I’ve joined twitter and Facebook.

Here’s where you can find me:

At my new website and blog:

Twitter was a little ornery and wouldn’t allow enough space for my full name, so you can follow me here:

At Facebook, I’ll soon be establishing a separate page url, but until that happens, please do a search for my “Barbara White Daille Author” page. Once there, you can “like” it if you feel so inclined. And I would like that very much. ;-)

Meanwhile, I’d also appreciate your input, since I’m such a newbie at all this.

Have you got any helpful hints or suggestions for moving around in these places? Know any good features I might want to check out? Have some ideas for how to keep up with everything without letting it take over your life? Because, as I’ve already discovered, it’s easy to become addicted to online socializing. LOL

I look forward to your info here and hope to see you over at twitter and Facebook, too!

Thanks in advance.

All my best to you,



Barbara White Daille

Monday, August 16, 2010


The cowboy is a reader favorite with many Harlequin American Romance fans. When I researched my latest book, Dexter: Honorable Cowboy (book #2) The Codys: First Family of Rodeo, I came across a slew of sites about cowboys, rodeo, ranches and a million other things associated with those wild west hunks. I thought I'd share a little trivia about a tool working cowboys wear every day while rodeo cowboys parade around arenas and show them off like a treasured piece of jewelry.

Q: How old are boot spurs?A: They were first used in ancient Rome, but became more popular in the 14th and 15th century.

Q: What are western spurs made from?
A: The main part of the spur is made from metal, usually iron but sometimes silver. The straps used to fasten the spur to the boot are made from leather. Other makers made them from aluminium, or steel.

Q: What are the parts of the boot spur called?A: The main U shaped part that goes around the boot is called the "yoke" or "heel band". From there, the "neck" extends out from the boot and the "rowel" is the rounded object attached to the end.

Q: What are spurs for cowboy boots used for?
A: The spurs are worn by cowboys who ride a horse. The rowels are used to dig into the sides of the horse to aid in steering the steed in conjunction with the tack and reins.

Q: Do riding spurs hurt the horse?
A: No. Most spurs have rowels that are round and blunt by design. The more fancy custom made spurs are the ones most likely to feature pointed star rowels and therefore would hurt an animal - but they are seldom used.

Q: Are cowboy boots and spurs still used today?
A: Yes. They are used all over the world by riders and farm hands but are also worn as a fashion accessory or Western Jewelry by millions. I suspect that they are more popular as a fashion accessory.

Check out Joe Spiller has been a cowboy all his life and has made spurs for rodeo cowboys, ranchers, movie stars and famous people. The Spiller Ranch is locate outside the West, Texas town of Windgate. He's famous for his Texas Buckaroo and Tear Drop spur.
for the latest information about The Cody's First Family of Rodeo miniseries and fun facts about cowboys.


Sunday, August 15, 2010


As summer nears the end and the kids are getting ready to go back to school, I'm a little sad it's over.

This past month, my eighty-four year old mom and I drove to Colorado. Since my dad passed away in 1987, she and I have taken a trip together each year. I think my husband secretly looks forward to the quiet.

She and I've been to New England and taken in the fall foliage, to San Francisco and even watched the sunrise from a hot air balloon over Napa Valley. But this year, she wanted to go back to Colorado. When my dad was alive, the three of us always took a summer vacation and Colorado was one of our favorite destinations. Partly to escape the intense Texas heat, but mostly because Colorado has so many beautiful vistas and quaint little mountain towns.

Mom is deaf, but she mapped out where she wanted to go and I just sat back and drove. We arrived in Trinidad the first night and I listened to her memories about how she and my dad were always so thrilled to hit the cooler weather when they arrived in Raton or Trinidad the first night out.

The next morning we drove north through Colorado Springs where my son and daughter-in-law were stationed at Fort Carson when my two grandsons were born. She talked about when she and I drove through the snow to see the baby and the excitement of meeting her first great-grandson. And the second great-grandson two years later.

Then up to Estes Park and across Trail Ridge Road. Did I remember the snowstorm we got into once there in June when I was eight? On to Winter Park, Vail, Gunnison, and finally arrived in Ouray. Without this reading like a travel brochure, what made this particular trip nostalgic was listening to all her tales. Times she and my dad came with friends before I was born and how they paid fifteen dollars a night for a hotel room and split it between two couples. They thought that was outrageous for a place to sleep. She wanted to know if I remembered riding in a horse drawn wagon at a little hotel along the way when I was five. A man had offered to take me and my friend Mike around the hotel parking lot. I hadn't thought about that in years. We drove beside a river where my dad loved to fly fish and did I remember the picnic we had there? She laughed remembering the huge bear prints we discovered on the hood of our car one morning in Lake City. And what about when we used to try to come up with all the 'B' words to describe the brook. Bity, baby, bubbling, babbling brook. And who started that silly game? It was a river, after all. We laughed.

While I drove, she lamented about renting a jeep when Dad was alive and driving the trail from Lake City across the mountain to Ouray for fresh homemade pie. And how while they were eating lunch, she noticed that my dad had a crust of mud on his forehead from the muddy jeep trail. Well the little corner restaurant is no longer the same. The building she thinks it was in is now a saloon. We did find a different restaurant that had homemade pie, but she was too full to have desert that evening. The next morning we drove to Telluride and there were some wonderful restaurants to stop for lunch, but she insisted that we drive back to Ouray because she was having pie for lunch. We laughed all the way back and each had a small cup of soup and homemade pie for desert.

I feel like I relived a piece of my childhood just listening to her talk. She laughed more than I’ve heard her laugh in years. I saw a glimpse into what my parents enjoyed and things they did when they were first married and how much fun they had together. Not only did I relive old memories, but created a few new ones of my own.