Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sisters Forever

By: Becca Leighton Burke 
From: The Vintage Kitchen Mystery Series
Author: Victoria Hamilton
Book 1 Title: A Deadly Grind
Pub. Date: May 2012
 Jaymie is toodling around vintage shopping for a week, as well as getting in some beach time with Canadian friends, so she asked me to fill in. She told me to write a piece on my specialty and main interest - as well as my profession - china teacups and teapots, but I think and talk about that all the time. 
Instead, I thought I'd tell you something about Jaymie. She's an ordinary girl, you'll be thinking. If you have read Victoria Hamilton's account of the extraordinary events attached to her purchase of a Hoosier cabinet (A Deadly Grind - Berkley Prime Crime - May 2012) you may think you already know all there is to know about her. She is a very ordinary 32 year old woman; she loves her family, and her community, tries to help when she can, and never passes an outstretched hand.
But to me she will always be a miracle. I was fourteen when Mom told me she was going to have a baby. I was a little disgusted. I mean, who wants to think about their parents doing the kind of things you need to do to have a baby, right? But then Jaymie was born, (I was fifteen by then) and I fell in love with my baby sister. She was so tiny, and perfect and pink!
Fast forward several years. I got married really young - too young - but it went very bad, very early. He was a jerk, though it took me a while to figure it out.
Anyway, I was about twenty-one or so, had been married for a couple of years already, and realized even then that the marriage was going to end at some point. It was just a matter of which one of us was going to admit we'd made a mistake. I came back to Queensville to live with my parents for a while, just to sort my head out. It was not a good time to do that, because my parents were going through a rough patch in their own marriage, so though I was trying to escape misery, I waltzed right back into it.
Jaymie could hear them fighting downstairs - the vent from the kitchen leads right up to her bedroom, so you can hear what's going on downstairs pretty clearly - and I think it scared her. She ended up in my bed most nights, and I would tell her stories, we'd sing goofy songs, and somehow, we all survived. Mom and Dad stayed married and are happy today. I left my husband, stumbled into another marriage which also ended badly, but today I have found a guy who is everything neither of my husbands were, so I'm happy. (Ooops... that's supposed to be a secret right now!) And Jaymie will never know that having to be strong for her made me aware how strong I could be. I'm hoping and praying that she will always be happy.

I know she thinks I'm bossy, and I guess I am; I just want what is best for her. I am my mother's daughter, while Jaymie is a lot more like our dad. But my little sister got me through that time, and I'll never be able to tell her how important that was to me. I may have helped her, but she helped me, too. You know, I don't think she is even aware how much people like her. She has the gift for that - engaging people and getting them to like her - that I'm missing. Oh, she has her faults, among them stubbornness (!!) but don't we all?

How about you? Has anyone ever impacted your life and yet to this day they don't know how much? How can I make sure she knows how important she is to me? Tell me about YOUR sister, or the girl/woman/friend who stands in stead of a sister. After all, 'sister' means something different to everyone!!
From Victoria Hamilton:
I hope you all enjoyed this little ode to sisters... there is no bond quite the same. A big thank you to all the mystery readers out there for the wonderful reception A Deadly Grind, Book 1 of the Vintage Kitchen Mysteries, is receiving!
Library Journal says: "Smartly written and successfully plotted, the debut of this new cozy series set on the U.S.-Canadian border exudes authenticity. I like partnering this title with Sharon Fiffer and Virginia Lowell for both tone and the vintage collecting topics."
Read an excerpt on my website and watch my blog for more blog appearances and posts on vintage kitchen stuff!
Check out Victoria Hamilton online:
Victoria Hamilton Mysteries -
Twitter: @MysteryVictoria


  1. I don't talk about my big sister. I try not to think about her. I never expected her to turn her back on me, but she did, and it still hurts, over thirty years later. (Don't tell anyone I said that. I've always pretended I don't care.) My best friends, Naomi and Edna, stood by me, and they are my sisters now.

    1. I believe that sometimes we 'choose' sisters! Or they choose us!

  2. Wow, Becca. My big sister is also 14 years older so I didn't really get to know her as I was growing up -- she moved away shortly after getting married. These days we live near each other and are best of friends! I'm very are you.

    1. I know... Jaymie was just a little kid when I left to get married, and I'm glad I came back to live with Mom and Dad for a few years after my seperation... I got to know her better, and I was there when she needed me!

  3. I'm the big sister, but I don't think I was ever as wonderful to Hannah as you were to Jaymie. We're closer in age, so maybe that makes a difference. Hannah tells me I'm bossy, but then I'm not the one who married a murder suspect and changed my mind two minutes after the ceremony. You get the picture. Sometimes it's tough being the stronger big sister.

    ~ Sophie

    1. You're so right, Sophie!! I'm sure you have been better than you think.