Thursday, August 12, 2010

Guest Blog and Giveaway with Kimberly Frost


Great Lakes
By Kimberly Frost


I grew up in a suburb of Detroit. In Texas, where I live now, that would already be considered “up north,” but, during my childhood, we didn’t consider Detroit to be up north. Though we did consider Tennessee (where my paternal grandparents were from) down south. Go figure.

In any event, “Up North” was a very specific place in my mind. It was not where Santa Claus and the elves lived or home to the Canadian Mounties and Wayne Gretzky. It was in my own state, three hundred miles from the center of the universe, a.k.a. my house.

Michigan happens to be one of the luckiest places in the world in that it is shaped like a mitten, making the relative geography of the state a snap to illustrate. I was from the thumb area. Up North was near the fingertips.

Each summer we traveled to my great aunt and uncle’s cottage, which had lake access—always a very big deal in Michigan. My great uncle had swum across the five-mile lake, apparently to prove that he could, since there was nothing in the story about anyone, man or giant fish, pursuing him. There was also no one tagging along with him. No one in a boat. No buddy swimmer. So not the safest way to prove he was a great swimmer, but people didn’t think overly much about safety back then, did they? And I have to say that I admire how rugged people were and how self-reliant. When one is three miles into a solo five-mile swim, there is no turning back. You’ve got to have faith in yourself to pull that off. It probably also helps to enjoy your own company. Since I’m someone who likes to live in her own head, I admire that, too.

Anyway, I’ve been thinking about that lake, which was a focal point of my childhood and which I associate with lazy summer days spent swimming, sunbathing and reading, running through the woods, riding in the fishing boat, and hurrying to eat ice cream cones before they melted over my hands. It was the best of times. For a glimpse of the fabled lake, see the picture I took a few years ago.

I suppose it’s no surprise then that water figures prominently in my writing and my writing life. I like writing retreats that have a view of water. Lakes, oceans, ponds…just about any body of water will do.

The town in my Southern Witch series sits between two rivers, and water always has a part to play in a Southern Witch story. In Would-Be Witch, Mercutio the ocelot arrives on a raft that’s floating down the river. In Barely Bewitched, Tammy has to escape into the water more than once and Bryn’s magical connection to water is revealed. In Halfway Hexed, well, let’s just say water is a member of the supporting cast again.

Anyway, I haven’t been swimming in a lake or an ocean for several years, but that seems to make little difference. The lake of my childhood lives on in my mind, always quick and ready inspiration when I write. Apparently, you can take the girl out of the lake, but you can’t take the lake out of the girl. And for that, I am grateful.

For a chance to win autographed copies of Would-Be Witch and Barely Bewitched from the Southern Witch series, tell me about your favorite childhood vacations/vacation spots.
3 winners will be chosen
1 winner will receive both Would-Be Witch and Barely Bewitched
2 Winners will receive a copy of Would-Be Witch
US Shipping Only Please

Thanks for inviting me to chat & I hope to see you in the comments…

Warm watery wishes,
Kimberly Frost
http://FrostFiction.com/

P.S. There will be free fiction posted exclusively on my website later this year. Anybody who’s interested in being notified when it’s available should visit my website & sign up for my newsletter. :-)


Want to win Kimberly's Southern Witch Books?

Then be Sure to Leave a Comment on This Post About Your Favorite Childhood Vacation Spot

Include Your Email Address

3 winners will be randomly chosen and announced next Wednesday

48 comments:

Carol L. said...

Hi Kimberly,
First I want to tell you that picture is amazing and reminds me of one of my favorite Vacation spots.
I'm from the northern part of New Jersey and every year we would spend about 2 weeks in a place called Lake Hiawatha. As a child it was paradise because there were two lakes, beautiful, boating loads of food and desserts and best of all an amusement park that opened at 6 pm.
I loved that place and all the wonderful memories I have because of it.
Thanks for sharing with us.
Carol L.
Lucky4750@aol.com

~*Jessica Rabbit*~ said...

We didn't have the money to do anything growing up so we never really went anywhere. And being the youngest of 6, four boys and one older sister, who didn't really want anything to do with the baby of the bunch I had to depend on myself to keep my summers and winter holiday's entertaining. I of course did this by reading. Well, we used to live on this one piece of property that had a few acres of woods behind it, and there was this one section so over grown with ivy { not the poisonous kind } it sorta looked like a hobbets house. And there was this small opening in the foliege { did I pronounce that right? } that you had to crawl through in order to get into the center of this big bundle of ivy with leaf covered floor. I speant a lot of time in there, hiding from everyone and the world, It was pretty cool. :)

littleredride.nhood[at]yahoo[dot]com

Margay said...

Hi, Kimberly,
My favorite childhood vacation spots both had something to do with grandparents. My father's parents lived in Virginia, so that was always fun going down there - there's some really beautiful scenery down there! And the other place we vacationed was on Cape Cod with my maternal grandmother, which I just loved. I have a special place in my heart for the Cape.

Margay

Margay1122(at)aol(dot)com

xxsquigglesxx said...

My favorite vacation spot when I was a kid was camping with my family in Cape Cod.

xxsquigglesxx(At)gmail(Dot)Com

Cecile said...

Hummm... Let me take a stroll through memory lane.. My favorite vacation spot when I was a child... My Mom and & Dad use to take us camping when I was little... and for the life of me I can not tell you where. I just knew it was out in the woods, but surrounded by other campers, lol. It was nice to get away and be with the family. But back then we did not have the luxuries of today... so it was even nicer because when you got away... you got away!

Thanks for the chance!!!
And thanks for having Ms. Frost here today! This is awesome!
alliwantandmorebooks@ gmail.com

Nicole said...

My favorite vacation spot as a kid was the lake house. My aunt and uncle lived on a lake in MN, and I always had the most fun going there and just hanging out, tubing, fishing, trying to water ski (i was helpless). Some of my best memories are from there!

Mary said...

My favorite spot was a little town called New Braunfels in Texas. Not only do they have a Schlitterban, their town has an awesome old world charm and an abundance of cute antique stores.

cait045 said...

My favorite vacation spot as a kid and still now is my cousin's house in Sea Isle. It is one of the old ones that haven't been taken out for a new one. I went down this week and it was so much fun. I went crabbing for the first time but caught a turtle. Its was a cool experience.

usignolc(at)yahooDOTcom

Alicia0605 said...

My family and I vacation in Anchorage Alaska!! We go deep sea fishing and we always go on a cruise to see the glaciers!! We go in the summer and it was always 70 degrees and sunny the whole time. I have such wonderful memories from there!!

aliciahall0605(AT)yahoo(DOT)com

SandyG265 said...

My favorite vacation spot was Lake George. My brother and I used to get up at the crack of dawn to go fishing and then we'd come back for breakfast. After breakfast we'd either go out rowing with my dad or walk into town.

Roxanne Rhoads said...

My favorite vacation spot was Tawas, MI.

My first step dad's son had a big boat they stayed in at the Marina most of the summer- we would go and visit and stay in the campground at the marina. We spent the days on the lake. It was wonderful.

I also loved staying at the cabin up in Harrison (yes everything north of Saginaw is pretty much up north to us Michigan folks).

I wish I had a cabin up north and a boat at Tawas now to share with my kids.

*yadkny* said...

My favorite childhood vacation spot was actually not too far from where we lived. It was just a park, but I remember some really great times being had there with family and friends. Picnics, birthdays, and even my D.A.R.E. graduation was done at this park. Oh to be a kid again:)

yadkny@hotmail.com

debbie said...

That is a really nice thing about michigan. Even if you don't have alot of money, you can always go to a lake. I used to go to houghton lake all the time when I was younger. It was always really nice.
twoofakind12@yahoo.com

Bethie said...

Thanks for the giveaway. I would love to win!
My favorite vaction spot as a child was Disney. We had the best time. I have been there many times since then, but the first time you see that castle, its like WOW!

lizzi0915 at aol dot com

Meredith said...

I think our most adventurous vacations were our camping trips to Ft. DeSoto park. We could fish, go to the beach, and still drive into town to shop if we chose to. I remember one time were out and came back to find the tent zipper opened about six inches and inside, my can of honey roasted peanuts had a hole chewed into the lid and many peanuts were missing. Another time, after a morning at the beach, a friend and I were napping in the tent and a raccoon walked right in, grabbed an entire pack of hot dog buns, and took off into the woods with them! Fishing was always great back in those days too--we almost always caught something good! Even if I did have my brother bait my hooks!

Anna D said...

We never really did the whole family vacation thing but every summer we would go to my Grandparents house in Northern AZ. We lived in Phoenix so summers were unbearably hot. They lived in a house that my Papa built for my Gramma and every detail was made by hand, to make her happy (the stone fireplace with woodburning stove- the artist studio so she would have proper lighting- a giant garage so his Papa and all his manly stuff wouldn't get underfoot- a garden full of snapdragons and shasta daisies). I loved being at their house! I learned to cook, garden, paint, fix things, crochet...you name it and we probably learned about it:) Each summer was such an adventure and I cherish all my memories. They are both gone now but I will never forget all the time we used to spend together.

donnas said...

Mine was Disney. I loved our trips to Florida. We would spend 4 days at Disney, 1 at Busch Gardens and 1 at the beach. It was so much fun!

bacchus76 at myself dot com

elaing8 said...

My favorite vacation spot was my grandmother's cottage up in Quebec.
Family friends,aunts/uncles cousins, we'd all go up..I remember the beach was private but the owner said we could swim there if we always pushed the logs out. So I would push them out while on top of it..lol. and I'd always need someone to come out and get me because I drifted too far.We would also go out to the abandoned cottages nearby and goof off.If we could find trouble we would.

jeanette8042 said...

My favorite vacation spot when I was a child was Vancouver, Canada because it was snowing and I got to run around all the sites with my parents. It was really beautiful and amazing to see another country.

Thanks for the giveaway!

lilazncutie1215[at]yahoo[dot]com

booklover0226 said...

As a child, we didn't take summer vacations. My parents works non-stop to make ends meet, so I stayed with my grandparents a lot. They lived on a farm and there were other kids and plenty of "trouble" to get into!

I guess those days were my best vacations!

Thanks,
Tracey D
booklover0226 at gmail dot com

Kimberly Frost said...

Hey, everyone!

I just wanted to pop in say hello! Thanks for your favorite vacation spots...it gives me ideas. :)

Robin K said...

Great contest! I loved going fishing with my Dad as a child. No matter where we went it was always an adventure. I also got lots of Happy Meals :)

robin [at] intensewhisper [dot] com

Estella said...

We didn't have any money for vacations when I was a child. I cannot remember ever going on a vacation until I was in my late 20's.

Jessica said...

Favorite childhood vacation spot? Hmm...I never really had a set location to vacation at as a kid. It just depended on the time and what we could afford to do. Branson was always fun, I did that maybe 2 or 3 times as a kid.

I do enjoy visiting my aunt in Wisconsin because the weather by her is always beautiful unlike where I live in the midwest. Ugh, humidity and heat and ugh!!

van_pham said...

My family didn't go on many vacations. The only vacation i remember when i was young was going to Las Vegas, NV...where i spent most of my time in the arcade.


Thanks for the giveaway!

van
Littopandaxpress(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jennifer Mathis said...

well as a child we was in fact very poor so their was no vacations really just the week during the summer when the town would send all of us kids to camp ( I think they wanted a moment of quiet with as us hoodlums gone lol). so my fav would have to be summer camp :)

meandi09@yahoo.com

Andrea I said...

I grew up in NW Florida and when we had the money, we would rent a house for a week. We also went to Chattanooga and the Smoky Mountains.

andrea.infinger@gmail.com

Dawn Embers said...

This was an interesting post.

My favorite place when I was younger was also a lake, though not a big one. We have a few lakes in Wyoming and my great grandma used to have a cabin near one of them. The years that weren't in drought were great because we could stay at the cabin, walk down to the water and sometimes would use the boat or jet skis. I even tried to water ski there, though I never was able to stand up in the water. Major water ski fail.

There are so many good memories of times spent at the cabin with family and I hope I can keep ahold of the memories for a long time.

DawnEmbers(at)ymail(.)com

JenM said...

Every summer, my family spent one week at a little lake in southern Maine. My parents and another couple spent the whole week out on the lake fishing and us kids ran wild. I just recently went back there for the first time in almost 40 years. The cabins were still there and it brought back some great memories.

jen at delux dot com

mbreakfield said...

We didn't really go on vacation, but I loved going to the river on hot, summer days. Rural living at its best.
marlenebreakfield(at)yahoo(dot)com

Barbara E. said...

When I was growing up, my father was a cross country trucker, so he was gone a lot. We didn't really go on vacations, I remember going to the beach in the summer or on picnics, but no actual vacations. The first real vacation trip I ever went on was after I got married, in fact it was my honeymoon and we went to Lake Tahoe (the Nevada side).

Barbed1951(at)aol(dot)com

Kailia Sage said...

I love going to Disney Land or the Beach. I had such a great time at Magic Kingdom, I was really young then, and going to the beach and playing in the water was a blast!

twilightforever.edward at gmail dot com

stacey said...

Growing up we where always hiking up clear creak and rafting down it and when not doing that we would go to wisky town lake.not sher if i spelled that right now if I drank i would get that right.or we would camp on one of the ilands in shasta lake.Love the water.
well in northern Ca its hot in the summer you got to love the water.
sasluvbooks(at)yahoo.com

linaramz said...

Hi Kimberly! My favorite vacation spot as a kid in California was up in the mountains where we would go camping. There would be the camping grounds where most people go but we would pass them up and go farther to my favorite spot where we had a huge area with a creek and tons of room and bumps to ride our bike and motorcycles. The family sitting around the campfire at night making smores was the best! It was so fun! I loved it! Even today we drive up there and camp in our spot, brings back a lot of great memories.

linaramz at yahoo dot com

LORETTA CANTON said...

Like so many other we were poor so no vacations. It was just doing things around town and having fun.

lorettaC

lbcanton@verizon.net

Gabrielle Lee said...

We did not have a lot of money to go on sumer vacations as a child but I did go to my Grandmothers in Chinatown almost every summer and spent weeks there making many wonderful memories.

Gabrielle
meingee@yahoo.com

katsrus said...

I love your picture. Very pretty. I would spend summers at my grandpa's farm. And once up there I would also get to visit very many aunts, uncles, & cousins. Not too many of any family left so I really do miss those days.
Sue B
katsrus(at)gmail(dot)com

Lisa R/alterlisa said...

Hey Kimberly,
We tended to camp out on John's River in the Blue Ridge Mountains. At that time you would just turn onto this dirt road that wound around the mountain and there were 35 or 40 places that you could pull off the road right next to this mountain stream. We threw up a tent, got out our fishing poles and went to work catching dinner. Mom would fry our fish over a campfire and we would wash it down with tea. We generally cooked hotdogs for lunch the next day after swimming in what felt like 50 degree water. We always brought a watermelon from home which we placed in the water. It was always icy cold.
(\___/)
(='.'=)
(")_(")
alterlisa AT yahoo DOT com
http://lisaslovesbooksofcourse.blogspot.com/

Tore said...

I am a new follower. We didn't take vacations when I was younger. My family was poor. Now that I am older I love going on cruises and to Myrtle Beach. Please enter me in contest. Tore923@aol.com

lunaminky said...

The only place we ever went for vacation was Florida. It's actually still my spot I wanna go when I need some r&r. And the pages of a good book.

Lunaminky@yahoo.com

lunaminky said...

The only place we ever went for vacation was Florida. It's actually still my spot I wanna go when I need some r&r. And the pages of a good book.

Lunaminky@yahoo.com

Chris J. said...

Hi Kimberly,
I love the pic and the way you described growing up, wow.
Growing up it was just me and my mom so no vacations really. So my best friend and I hung out in the woods. There was alittle stream we played in and lots of fruit trees so we always picked grapes, figs, plums and blackberries depending on the season. Built forts from the logs laying around and relaxed in the ferns that grew all through the woods. I used to make up stories about fairies and magic to entertain us. It was fun but simple, I miss that as I live in Texas and mesquites, oaks and cactus just don't feel the same. lol
Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories with us and Best Wishes.

Beverly said...

Hi Kimberly - vacation spots...
When I was a kid we didn't vacation a lot, my mom stayed at home with us and my dad worked so there wasn't a lot of extra money for vacations. We did however have a "trailer" in Wisconsin. It was a mobile home that my parents had bought and put on a piece of land they had purchased when they were newly married. (to someday become home......in the far future). We lived in the twin cities and would go to "the trailer" on weekends and during the summer. It was right on the back channel of the Mississippi River and was AMAZING! We had everything kids could want: turtles, snakes, sand, water, swimming, fishing, you know the stuff I am talking about. It was great - so much freedom. No other kids to play with like some vacation spots, but I had two sisters and we always had fun. My favorite memory is from when we would go there in the winter. We would leave after my dad came home from work, so we were all in our flannel nighties and we would sleep in the car on the way. Once we got there, my dad would go inside and turn on the electric and the furnace. Then we would all go inside and each of us would stand over a floor vent while the heater blew. It was great - Now my parents have built a home there and "the trailer" is gone - but the memories will live forever!
bsharp88@gmail.com

allisonsbj3 said...

I loved going camping with my grandparents at the lake.

Thanks for this giveaway!

allisonsbj3(at)gmail(dot)com

Kjarvala said...

Dear Kimberly,
I was vary lucky my parents bot a cottage property high up on a steep rocky slope on the shore of Pike Lake. as a kid it was the best place to grow up each weekend in the summer. Gient bullfrogs to catch each weekend and then put back(Mom insisted on a catch and releas program...) i even cot her a soft shelled mud turtle, do you remember how hard those were to even find let alown actualy catch one!!!! (she wouldnt let me keep that ether...)one of my favorite spots was over on the point. ehre was a rocky spot perfect for sitting on looking a swampy part of the bay. i could watching the frogs and turtles watch me. i had to forfet that rock to a Black rat snake (aka black water snake) who looked like he was taller than i was! he wanted my spot and i gave it up, since thare the only snakes ive ever met that go towrds you and not away from you if you meet one. oh well i still had the Dock, whitch was a good place to watch the bats at dusk and the August metior showers on.
i am hidrophobic (as well as dislexic) so dad always said the lake could never make it up the hill (He is a Hydrogeologist so i beleved him!) will in grade 13 on the labor day weekend (Just befor school started) a small tornato came through the area, tuching down on the lake it changed colour and became a water spout. it headed almost strate towrds us in the cottage, but it decided to come up between ours and our nabors cottages. the water that the spout had picked up from the lake pelted the cottage and came seeping into the cottage through the seems around the doors and windows.the wind was strong enuff to push the water horizontaly. it was scary creepy and fasinating all the same time. the tornato had been resonably polite comming up the hill (other than throughing the lake at us) it didnt tuch a thing untill it chose one of the trees at the top of the hill and smote the nabors car with it! it was a spectacular hit! what ame! smuched in the suport between the front and back doors so nether could be opened (once the tree was removed). after its fun with the car it wandered off into the swamp and had a hissy fit rippin up trees on its way towords the cottage over on Blacks lake.
so no mater how steep the clime down to the lake, dont trust the lake to stay down there where its suposto! how can you trust an eliment that is solid one moment but may change its mide and state and be a liquid or a gass the next moment!
your cottage picture looks lovely i hope you had lots of frog hunting adventures as well as book reading and suntaning.
Have fun and i hope you get to have your own cottage soon! come see the ones up further north in Ontario!
all for now dislexicly yours jan in Ottawa jsrmt at hotmail dot com (i have relitives in the states in case i win a book- yes im sure thay moved there just for my abillity to by books on line, and have them sent to them insted of here!) Have fun!!!

Kjarvala said...

Dear Kimberly,
I was vary lucky my parents bot a cottage property high up on a steep rocky slope on the shore of Pike Lake. as a kid it was the best place to grow up each weekend in the summer. Gient bullfrogs to catch each weekend and then put back(Mom insisted on a catch and releas program...) i even cot her a soft shelled mud turtle, do you remember how hard those were to even find let alown actualy catch one!!!! (she wouldnt let me keep that ether...)one of my favorite spots was over on the point. ehre was a rocky spot perfect for sitting on looking a swampy part of the bay. i could watching the frogs and turtles watch me. i had to forfet that rock to a Black rat snake (aka black water snake) who looked like he was taller than i was! he wanted my spot and i gave it up, since thare the only snakes ive ever met that go towrds you and not away from you if you meet one. oh well i still had the Dock, whitch was a good place to watch the bats at dusk and the August metior showers on.
all for now dislexicly yours jan in ottawa jsrmt at hotmail dot com.

Kjarvala said...

Dear Kimberly,
part 2 of my note about the cottage:
i am hidrophobic (as well as dislexic) so dad always said the lake could never make it up the hill (He is a Hydrogeologist so i beleved him!) will in grade 13 on the labor day weekend (Just befor school started) a small tornato came through the area, tuching down on the lake it changed colour and became a water spout. it headed almost strate towrds us in the cottage, but it decided to come up between ours and our nabors cottages. the water that the spout had picked up from the lake pelted the cottage and came seeping into the cottage through the seems around the doors and windows.the wind was strong enuff to push the water horizontaly. it was scary creepy and fasinating all the same time. the tornato had been resonably polite comming up the hill (other than throughing the lake at us) it didnt tuch a thing untill it chose one of the trees at the top of the hill and smote the nabors car with it! it was a spectacular hit! what ame! smuched in the suport between the front and back doors so nether could be opened (once the tree was removed). after its fun with the car it wandered off into the swamp and had a hissy fit rippin up trees on its way towords the cottage over on Blacks lake.
so no mater how steep the clime down to the lake, dont trust the lake to stay down there where its suposto! how can you trust an eliment that is solid one moment but may change its mide and state and be a liquid or a gass the next moment!
your cottage picture looks lovely i hope you had lots of frog hunting adventures as well as book reading and suntaning.
Have fun and i hope you get to have your own cottage soon! come see the ones up further north in Ontario!
all for now dislexicly yours jan in Ottawa (i have relitives in the states in case i win a book- yes im sure thay moved there just for my abillity to by books on line, and have them sent to them insted of here!) Have fun!!!

jellybelly82158 said...

My favorite childhood vaction was going fishing with my Dad to Ky Lake. Sometime we would got to Cumberland Falls to fish. I love being with my Dad.

 
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