A Garage, A Baby, And Writing

Good morning, Everyone. It is brisk on the South Shore of Long Island, but the trees are budding and early spring flowers have bloomed. Color returns. Pour yourself a cup of coffee. Let’s catch up.

If we were having coffee together, I would want to talk about garages. My sisters, mother and I are preparing to clear out my dad’s man caves. It’s been an emotional slog, sorting tools, fishing gear, and boat stuff. Everything was important. Dad was a man who could fix almost anything on a shoestring budget, which means he collected a variety of tools and had boxes and cans filled with hardware of varying sizes and shapes. He planned on using leftover pieces of aluminum, wood, tiles for future projects. He wasn’t sure which project but what a celebration when he could find the just right scrap to do a job. In the 50+ years of living in the house, one car seldom resided in the two-car garage. 

All the collecting and gathering would have been fine if he had an organized system. Dad did not hang a pegboard wall with silhouettes to show where drills and screwdrivers and hammers belonged. Jars or cans of hardware did not have specific shelf positions or labels. Dad had a few good guesses where he last saw something, but frequently found it easier to visit the hardware store for needed washers and certain sized bolts. While browsing in the store, he found bargains too good to pass up. Dozens of hammers and drill bits clutter tool drawers and benches. 

If we were having coffee together, I would announce that my niece had a baby girl last week. Of course she is a beautiful addition to the clan. Her name is Trulee Ann, in honor of my dad’s, her great grandpa’s, favorite family boat. It’s a different name, but once you start associating it to this sweet baby, the it fits.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you about my writing progress. This week I sent out a much neglected Stories Served Around The Table News to Nosh Letter. You can open your copy here. I added a survey so I can learn about who is following me and what they are looking for. You can fill out your survey here.  

If we were having coffee, I would report that Book 2 in the Becoming America’s Stories is almost done. I thought it was done, but my beta readers differed, so I am focused on digesting their suggestions and working on a better story and a better title. Almost there.  

In other writing news, I am preparing for a launch campaign. A launch campaign involves getting readers excited about the new book coming out as well as the previous book, Daily Bread. Stay tuned for added content, activities, and hopeful interviews, newsletter swapping, and guest blog postings. Although I’d rather write stories, getting the launch right only makes it more possible for me to put out more stories in the future. 

That’s about it. Great big thank you to Natalie the Explorer, the incredible host of Weekend Coffee Share.

 Be kind. Be safe.

Have a fantastic week, Everyone. Make it great.

Enjoy‌ ‌❤️.‌ ‌Like‌ ‌‌👍‌.‌ ‌Share‌ ‌😊.‌ ‌  

Schedule your virtual and live Book Club Events and Creative Writing Workshops.

Download FREE Curriculum Connections

If you had purchased a paperback or ebook Daily Bread and/or Becoming America’s Food StoriesThank you!

Take a picture of you with Daily Bread and/or Becoming America’s Food Stories, and I’ll send you Reader’s Swag and add you to the Becoming America’s Stories Readers slideshow, coming soon! Kid pics are welcomed with parent or guardian permission. Don’t forget to leave a rating and quick comment on Amazon and/or Goodreads.


Daily Bread is set in the Lower East Side of Manhattan, 1911. The story follows nine-year-old Lily, an American-born child of Sicilian immigrants, who wants to prove she is not a little kid. To be a big kid in the crowded tenement neighborhoods, she must tackle bigotry, bullies, disasters, dotty bakers, and learn to cross the street by herself
Hope you are hungry. Becoming America’s Food Stories recalls the tales that have been told around my family’s dinner table. The histories explain the motivations over bowls of macaroni, antics play out while slurping soup, and laughter echoes throughout the dining room. Pull up a seat. There’s always room.

“If you don’t cook with love, you have to get out of the kitchen.” Florence Messina

Antoinette Truglio Martin is the author of Hug Everyone You Know: A Year of Community, Courage, and Cancer. The memoir is a wimpy patient’s journey through her first year of breast cancer treatment.

14 thoughts

  1. Congratulations to your niece and the entire family clan! I like the changes you’ve made to your blog. It looks organized and easy to read. Thank you for your #weekendcoffeeshare

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good morning

    Many memories in dads mancave I’m sure
    I’d like to hear some sometime
    I have a memory of being out in the ocean on a boat with all my cousins and the boat stopped engine failure . My cousin Bill opened a trap door found a shoe strong and the engine started
    Just like that!!!!!!!!😘

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Congratulations on the new addition to your family! The name Trulee Ann is beautiful.

    Congrats on the story too! A question for you Antoinette, do you use family and friends for your beta readers? If not, how do you find your beta readers?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am in a middle grade writer Facebook group, and two other writers groups. We swap manuscripts. They don’t necessarily live me like friends and family, so honest knowledgeable feedback comes my way.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh my.
    I have that garage. . .
    Trying to clean or organize it is a huge challenge. But you raise a good point and I really should not stick my family with it. Ugh. Okay. I’ll solve this one jar of valuable surplus hardware at a time.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. We were fortunate, dealing with the parents’ belongings when they died. Lots of families to take away what they wanted. A gradual process, since one of my siblings had been designated to take over the house, living in the same town and children and grandchildren local. If my husband should die before me, though, I will be baffled! A lot of what my siblings left with me has gradually gone out the door, again, on Spring Clean-up weeks, but there were real treasures amongst all else.
    I hold the keepsakes dear. Best wishes to you and your family.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Congratulations to the whole family on the new arrival of Trulee Ann which is a lovely tribute to your father and his eclectic passions.. My husband is of a similar persuasion and nothing in this house gets thrown away without having every last useful piece removed for future use. A bittersweet task I am sure, as memories would have been close to the surface.. have a lovely week.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What exciting news….first off, I’m sure it was hard on many levels to go through your dads things, but I. bet there were memories shared. I love your nieces name. Also exciting is your new book. Whoo hoo! I just ordered your first book. I can’t wait to read it. I love these kinds of books and stories! Have a great week

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Ah, the clear out at the end of a man’s life — interesting and difficult. When my impatient husband couldn’t lay his hands on a tool immediately, he went out and bought one. When we sorted through everything after he was gone, we had several hammers, saws, wrenches, etc. I think we had six or seven sets of drill bits! That’s life. Congratulations on your new niece. Babies are such a blessing. Thanks for the post.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.