Roadblocks to Hell KINDLE version is available for FREE November 25 – 29 th.

Wednesday to Sunday. 

The Kindle version is available from Amazon.com herehttp://amzn.to/21d4nat

Our Canadian family and friends can get it from Amazon.ca for free here from Wednesday ’til Sunday

If you don’t have a Kindle reader, you can still download an app from Amazon and read it on your smart phone or desktop computer.

Get your copy today –  download it and then – would you please write and post a Verified review? (at your convenience)

NOTE: For a verified review, one must turn pages –  Amazon keeps track of the pages you read to make sure reviews are based on reading the book.  That’s a good thing from my perspective. :)

Thank you and

Have a happy Thanksgiving Day – to all my US friends. 

2016 11 x 17 LION calendar and art cards available on my author’s Storyteller blog.  

1 Thumbnail Lion Calendar 2016

11″ x 17″ calendar above

Set of 3 art cards below


Rblocks card B

Rblocks card A

Rblocks card C 4

Here’s a short teaser for 


my website: carriewachsmann.com/blog/about

Fiction tightly based on a true story. (Category – Fictional/biographical)

So… “What’s this book all about?” you ask.

Roadblocks thumbnail for bookmark

Convicted of trying to kill the police chief at age 15, Walter faces years in adult prison. His only friend, a young Mennonite girl from a strict religious background.

Yes, that would be me. We met when we were teens, and our friendship lasted his lifetime.

What are people saying about the book?

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 “I started reading it and couldn’t put it down. I read until I was finished. Carrie is such a good writer and this is a very interesting story.”  Bev S
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 “Love your book! Half way done! Very intriguing and very good.”  Alicia D 
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“I could hardly put it down. I talked to a few friends who are waiting to read it.” Sharon S 
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More REVIEWS on Amazon –  Available on Amazon  here

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Walt’s wife, Peggy and I reminiscing. Here’s what she has to say about it.

“Eeeek!! The book is here! It’s called Roadblocks to Hell and it’s a fictionalized story of my husband’s life. This is me with author and friend.
 This book is well written and very accurate. The fictionalization involves names, some dialogue and dramatization. The core facts of story are true. I highly recommend this book, it has brought back a lot of memories.”  

Patricia and Carrie 2015 oct.

Walt experienced life in a way few can imagine… and yet… as prison chaplain Madsel put it, “I am so proud of Walt… over the past 14 years I have worked with so many like him, and only 2% of the people with histories like Walt ever make it at the end. Most die violently or alone in prison in their lost state.”

Walt’s story is intriguing and compelling,  but most of all it is redemptive.

I am honored to be the one to tell his story, and I am honored to have had him as a friend for over 40 years.

I believe this book will give hope and encouragement to many.

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Below: one of the 60 plus images in the book – Walt and Cali climbing a Manitoba Maple tree.

Chapter 6 Tree climbing 2 300dpi

Looking for a healthy lunch idea?

This is one of my favorites:

 Tuna, Corn & Sun-dried Tomato Recipe

Tastes as good as it looks. Carrie ©

Tastes as good as it looks. Carrie ©

 Mix the following: 

1/4 cup cooked non-GMO corn (cold)

1 can flaked tuna – drained

2 tbsp chopped red onion

1 tbsp sun-dried tomatoes in oil

sea salt to taste

In a separate small bowel mix:

1 tbsp Hellman’s mayonnaise

2 tsp olive oil

juice of 1/4 lemon

1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar

1/4 tsp garlic powder

pepper if desired

Mix the tuna blend and dressing blend together

Butter the 100% Rye Crisp –  if you like

Spread the tuna – corn mix on the Rye Crisp crackers (or crackers of your choice)

Top with a few sun-dried tomatoes

Serve with a few carrots sticks and cucumber slices

Makes a great lunch – Serves two

carriewachsmann.com/blog – StoryTeller

Elderberry Attacks Colds and Flu



Elderberry Does the Job When it Comes to the Cold or Flu.

Are you fighting the flu bug? Dealing with  bronchial congestion, sore throat and cough?

Check out Elderberry Concentrate.

The extract taken from wild grown Elder Flowers (Sambucus nigra) is known to help the body resist infection.

and here’s the interesting part…………

the berries have been found to interrupt the ability of some viruses to replicate”!. Or said in another way, “Elderberries contain Sambucus nigra agglutinins (SNAs), which helps prevent some types of flu from infecting healthy cells.” Now that’s information worth knowing.

One winter a member of our family got bronchitis and was unable to shake it. My research seemed to point to the Elderberry so we gave Sambu® Elderberry Concentrate a try. “Elderberry is one of the most effective herbs for preventing and treating upper respiratory infections” was what I was told.

Within the week the bronchitis was under control.

Another delicious alternative is the Elderberry and Zinc lozenges (NOW brand) I keep these in my herbal medicinal cabinet. I usually find my Elderberry concentrate or lozenges at the local health store.

CAUTION ****** Do NOT use FRESH – as all parts of the plant in the fresh state can cause poisoning. So if you’ve got an Elderberry bush in your back yard like I do, you best leave the berries for the birds.

Having said that, properly prepared, the Elderberry carries significant healing power and the juice is delicious. This is one medicine anyone can swallow.





Don’t forget, to add a Merry Heart to the mix. “A merry heart does good like a medicine.”

disclaimer: The content on this post is meant for informational purposes only, and is not intended for use as official health consultation.

November is national diabetes month.

If you or someone in your family lives with diabetes, you know the challenges they face each and everyday. Thankfully you can live a rich and full life by making a few small changes. Many people with type II diabetes have been able to stop all symptoms entirely just by changing their diet.

I’ve seen it happen in my own family. Some are prone to Type II diabetes. This got me thinking and doing research.

One reason my family has this history of diabetes is because they are so extraordinary in the kitchen. They delight in enjoying rich fatty foods, scrumptious sauces, plenty of home-made white breads, and…. are in love with sugar.  (did I mention rich desserts?)

Because my diet today is healthy and nutrient rich, I know I do not have to worry about whether or not I am at risk. I am not.

The results from the last glucose blood test came back – “excellent”. “You didn’t even spike!” was the doctor’s shocked comment. “We won’t be doing that test for another ten years.” 

I chuckled because I knew I was good.

Then came the eye doctor’s report. If there is a history of diabetes in the family, one must keep an eye on one’s eyes. The doctor insisted I have the complete exam done twice, (she wasn’t satisfied with the results of the first) before she came back with this result.

“Well, things look good… in fact they are more than good. Your eyes are better than normal.”

Again I chuckled because I knew I was good.

What did I do?

I made several important lifestyle choices. I don’t smoke, don’t drink (I will have 1/2 a class of wine on special occasions). Love my one and only man.

For many years now I have avoided foods with sugar, I take my Moringa leaf powder and diatomaceous earth, (and a few other supplements) and follow Dr. Jonn Matsen’s “Eat with the Seasons” protocol.

Eating Alive II image

Dr. Matsen is a naturopath who runs the Northshore Naturopathic Clinic in North Vancouver, BC, Canada. His book Eating Alive II has been my road map and is worth every penny you spend on it.

Raw honey, pure maple syrup and stevia are my sugar substitutes, and… get this… I even enjoy a small piece of dark chocolate ever so often.

I bake my own non-yeast breads and loaves, and make the most amazing desserts out of foods like quinoa, exotic flours and vegetables.

I love my Rooibos tea. 


I exercise regularly, and do the things I love… love (am passionate about) writing and painting.

I share my passions by teaching writing and painting, and one more… I love to make films… I lied… there’s still another… I love to read and publish books.

Carrie in library with the candlestick 1

(photo  Storyteller by candlelight – Carrie ©)

But… there is something more.

Something many people don’t consider in their health equation. Their spiritual life.

For me, my relationship with God is the most important element. I believe in a God that is personal, cares about me and certainly my health. I believe that God sent Jesus to this earth so many years ago to bridge that gap between God and man… to pay for their sin… in full, to bring them all good things and that includes health.

He did this for you and me ©

He did this for you & me – Carrie ©

I believe that if it’s good – it’s from God… if it’s not good… it’s not from God. That’s what the Bible says and I am simple enough to believe it.

It’s time to seek and find… to claim those treasures He has for us.  He did that for you and me. 

III John 2  speaks to me when it comes to my health. “I pray that you may prosper and be in good health, even as your soul prospers.” 

How does my soul prosper? In order for my soul to prosper I need peace. I need hope. I need joy. I need to be excited to wake up in the morning, ready to get on with whatever the day might bring. That means I need God. It’s only in my relationship with Him that I find that place of peace, have hope, know joy.

If you face the challenges of diabetes and are looking for answers to the health challenge, there are experts out there who can help you. 

For those of you who want some spiritual input into your lives… you’ll want to check out this pastor’s blog. He and his wife are two of the most  loving, beautiful, grace filled people I know. Cory’s  

got something to say.

NOTE: The Fur Trade Challenge project dates have been moved up one week from previously posted – PLEASE NOTE DATE CHANGES:  The Fort Langley tour – Friday, Oct, 11, 10:00 – 12:00 noon (bring a bag lunch to share after the tour)
Classes will be held Tuesdays starting October 15 – Tuesday December 3, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM.

Attention: Home school families in the Abbotsford area… 

I am very excited about offering this new course to home school families. 

Fur Trade Challenge – for Grade 5 Home School Students

Fur Trade - Fort Langley, BC - © Carrie Wachsmann -  watercolor

(NOTE: this project meets many of the HCOS (Heritage Christian Online School) requirements for Grade 5 Social Studies – see list below under “Requirements”)

Here is what you can expect from this course:

Project includes the following:

  1. A visit to Fort Langley – “ Fur Trade Challenge” interactive tour. NEW this year
  2. Research
  3. Descriptive writing/outline & report
  4. Art & crafts/visuals/display
  5. Building a Fort Langley model
  6. Costume creation/character identification
  7. Presentation

Date & Time: The Fort Langley tourFriday, Oct, 11, 10:00 – 12:00 noon (bring a bag lunch to share after the tour)
Classes will be held Tuesdays starting October 15 – Tuesday December 3, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM.
Duration: 8 weeks starting after the field trip to Fort Langley.
Cost per student: based on requirement of 10-12 students  (supplies and facility included)

Cost per HCOS student is $100

Cost per student from other schools is $135

Extra cost: Families are responsible for admission to the Fort Langley tour on Friday, Oct. 4
Cost of admission per student $3.90 & $6.55 per parent  (taxes included – children under 6 – free)

Location: Solid Rock Church 34371 4th Ave. Abbotsford. 604.850.1350

Fort Langley project winter scene

Popsicle stick version of Fort Langley’s Big House and outdoor oven, along with dough characters – done several years ago. 

Project DETAILS:

  • The Fort Langley project takes the students on an exciting adventure into the lives of our pioneering
  • This project will begin with the students enjoying a day at Fort Langley.
  • Students will choose a character or personality that they would like to represent .
  • Students will have opportunity to create a costume (thrift store shopping) that fits their character.
  • Students will write a descriptive letter to family back home, about their experiences at the fort. (research and outline included)
  •  As a group, students will recreate the fort using popsicle sticks, and branches. Each character will build their own building, and in some cases 2 or more students may work on one building.
  • The fort will come alive when the students fill their fort with dough characters they have made.
  • Students use their resourcefulness to outfit their buildings and finish off the fort.
  • The project ends with a family presentation day where students get to share their story with parents and guests. Parents may want to provide snacks (perhaps something representative of the early Fort Langley days) to celebrate the students’ accomplishments.


The following requirements taken from HCOS Social Studies learning plan are covered in this project.


(italizied areas indicate where this course meets the requirements of the learning plan)

3. What were problems faced by people involved in the Fraser fur trade? Choose one and identify why it was a problem and how it was solved. If it wasn’t solved, suggest a solution (Students will choose a character that would have settled at Fort Langley)

8. Interview someone about their life. (Students will be interviewing tour guides at Fort Langley on the field trip as well as doing other research) Are their answers the same or different? Explain why. Present your questions and answers in one of the following formats: written report. (Written in the form of a letter to family back home across the ocean – about their experiences as a settler to Fort Langley) (hand written rough work, then typed) electronic presentation, illustrations with captions, dramatic, roll play, song, time line, journal, diorama).

9. Find some primary sources (defined as: original document relating to a particular subject, experiment, time period, or event) (research their topic and character) for your own life or someone else’s life (birth certificate, pictures, journals, diaries, school work, art work, stories from parents, etc). Use them to make a secondary source (defined as: a document that interprets or analyzes primary sources and is usually written or produced some time after the initial event took place or work was produced). You could also put the primary sources together into a variety of other presentation forms listed in question number eight.

14. Who were the first settlers in B.C.? Choose a person or group and tell more about them. Clarify things like: when they came to B.C., difficulties they faced, things they enjoyed, daily life, etc.)

15. When creating any of the reports above or for another Social Studies assignment for project, create an outline before you begin. In the outline identify the following, topic/assignment/title, how you will introduce your topic, key points (with details for each point), how you will conclude your topic. Your outlines can be graphic, written, or done electronically.

16. Create an annotated timeline, map, scrapbook, story board, or other graphic to illustrate selected events

18. How did the Canadian environment affect early forms of transportation and communication in Canada? (Rivers)

19. Pretend you are an early settler coming to Canada from another country. Outline the trip and all the different types of transportation you use and why you needed that type of transportation.

26. How are waterways used in different parts of Canada for transportation? How has this changed over time?

46. Pick a job (character) that was around in 1827, and currently (e.g., teacher, grocery store owner, carpenter, farmer). How has technology changed how this job is done?

47. Choose a city that has a natural resource industry (saw mill, mine, fish and marine, energy). When did the town start? Did it start because of the natural resource? (Fort Langley)

82. What did the Canadian constitution give Canadians in 1867 and 1982? Describe the significant events and people contributing to Confederation (e.g., fur trade, gold rush, railway, John A. Macdonald, Pierre Trudeau).

Instructor: Carrie Wachsmann

Here’s what some parents and students have to say about Carrie’s instruction: (feedback from Carrie’s home school course “Writing, Art & Bookmaking”)

(Note: Watch – details on this course to come shortly)

“Well organized. Carrie had 12 kids happily engaged for three hours at a time, asking for more work, and at times forgetting their lunch time. She gave them tools to edit and do their work on their own. This has helped the students to expound their creativity and still keep their original ideas. They shared their very own story/book with everyone at the end. They have learned tons of skills beyond book publishing.”

“I love the concept of this course, and my daughter and I are both very pleased with the book she was able to make. We also really enjoyed Mrs. Wachsmann’s teaching style and inspiring creative talent…” R.F.

“The course was excellent. Very well prepared… The cover idea was brilliant.” G.B.

“I think it was the best class I have ever been to.” E.E.

“It was excellent fun.” D.K.

“It was a wonderful course! I’ve learned a lot in the past few weeks. Mrs. Wachsmann is an excellent teacher.” J.K.

“… Making a book with you was like opening a door into another world.” A.F

BIO: A little about myself

Carrie library candle stick 5

Carrie (Heide) Wachsmann has been writing stories since she was first able to hold a pencil. Her short, personal stories have since expanded and she is now a published author. Her first fiction book called “The Ryder” was published in 1991. Since then she has also written for a number of national and international magazines. Her on-line articles can be found at examiner.com and abbotsfordtoday.ca. Her personal blog nuggetsofgold.wordpress.com chronicles some of her current and past writing accomplishments.

Carrie also paints, sketches and illustrates books. Some of her paintings can be found at carriewachsmann.myartchannel.com.

In 2008 she was awarded the “Outstanding Emerging Artist” Arty Award, by the Abbotsford Arts Council. This was in recognition for her contributions to art in Abbotsford in writing, painting and videography.

Carrie is currently completing her second and third novels of the trilogy that began with The Ryder.

The Ryder 1991 cover - Carrie  ©

The Ryder 1991 cover – Carrie ©

Her first fictional dramatization of a real life story is being edited by the publisher, and is expected to be released in early 2014.

Not only is Carrie a skilled artist and writer, but she has also developed a series of instructional courses on writing, art, bookmaking and creative, multimedia story telling.

CONTACT: carrie@wachsmannstudios.com

Check out the FACEBOOK Event page – Fur Trade Challenge – Home School opportunity 

So you figure you don’t have a “Green Thumb”? Then this short tutorial just might be what you are looking for. 

Thanks to Minde Wagner for sharing “How to Plant Outdoor Potted Flowers” with our readers. 

Time to play in the dirt.


Flowers planted in June

Pot 1 latest pictureThe flowers planted in June – photographed on July 4th.

Potted flowers July 2013 2

This article will guide you through the process of creating an outdoor potted flower arrangement. It will instruct on how to plant “partial-sun” flowers in a plastic pot.

This project should be done in spring in order to experience the full blooms in summer. Be prepared to use gentle hands throughout the entire process, and consider the idea that you may get a little dirty.

Before you begin, there are four basic things you need to think about:

1. The location of your flower pot

The location of your flower pot is categorized into 3 different types of sun exposure:

  • Full Sun – minimum 6 hours of direct sunlight each day.
  • Partial Sun – 3 hours of direct sunlight each day.
  • Shade – less than 3 hours of direct sunlight each day.

2. The type of flower pot.

The two main types of flower pots available are:

  • Clay (ceramic) pots – for herbs and flowers that like dry soil.
  • Plastic pots – for most flowers.

3. The types of flowers you should buy

The types of flowers you buy should match the sun exposure of the flower pot location. You should find similar exposure symbols on each of the plants when you purchase them:

  • Full Sun – minimum 6 hours of direct sunlight each day.
  • Partial Sun – 3 hours of direct sunlight each day.
  • Shade – less than 3 hours of direct sunlight.

4. Your ability to maintain and care for the flowers

You should be prepared to water the flowers each day and remove the dead flowers and leaves regularly. Removing dead flowers promotes new blooms.

List of Materials and Equipment

All of the following materials can be found at Home Depot, Canadian Tire, Superstore, or any local garden shop. The flowers and equipment may vary in type and style. Some items are seasonal and only available in spring and early summer. Most items are available all year.

  1. Small Garden Shovel
  2. Water Hose with Shower Nozzle (or Watering Can)
  3. Small-Medium Rocks (approximately 2 liters)
  4. Flowers.

Minimum requirement for this project:

  1. 1 x 5” Saratoga
  2. 3 x 2” Petunias
  3. 4 x 1” Lobelia
  4. Potting Soil Mix – minimum 60 liters.
  5. Scissors
  6. Garden Gloves
  7. Sheet of Plastic or Garbage Bag (size: 3ft x 2ft)
  8. Plastic Pot with drainage holes (size:16”top with 10” bottom).

Materials and Equipment Needed to Plant the Flowers

Materials and equipment

Steps to Planting Flowers in the Pot

Make sure to follow each of the steps and sub-directions in sequential order. The main steps include: (Step 1) set up materials and equipment, (Step 2) prepare the pot, (Step 3) prepare the flowers, (Step 4) plant the flowers, and (Step 5) water and care for the potted flowers.

Step 1: Set Up Materials and Equipment

  1. Purchase and have all materials and equipment ready.
  2. Put on gloves.
  3. Place the plastic on the ground to keep the area from getting dirty.
  4. Place the pot on the plastic to one side.

Plastic and Pot Set Up

Plastic and pot set up

Step 2: Prepare the Pot

  1. Put the rocks in the bottom of the pot
  2. Fill the pot with potting soil until just over ¾ full.
  3. Make sure you have enough soil reserved to fill the remainder ¼ of the pot.
  4. Dig 6 shallow holes in the soil.

Shallow Holes in the Soil

shallow holes in the soil

Step 3: Prepare the Flowers

Be gentle and take your time when handling the flowers. Try not to crush or break stems and leaves. Some breakage may happen by accident; this is usually OK. Most plants will recover from damage if cared for properly.

  1. Water the flowers using a gentle stream until the soil and roots are moist.
  2. Cut the plastic flower containers into individual pieces with the scissors.
  3. Arrange the flowers in the pot to visualize how you would like them while they are still in the plastic containers.

Cut the Plastic Flower Containers

Cut the containers

Arrange Flowers in the Pot

All plants in the pot

Step 4: Plant the Flowers

When handling the flowers, grasp gently near the base of the stems where they are strongest. Take your time and be careful with the stems and leaves.

  1. Hold the first container by the flower base, turn it upside down and look at the bottom.
  2. Remove any roots sticking out of the bottom container by pulling or cutting them.
  3. Hold the flower base with one hand and squeeze the bottom of the plastic container with your other hand.
  4. Keep squeezing the container and pushing the roots upward until the flowers and roots are out of the container.
  5. Gently break up the bottom of the roots so they are hanging loosely. (This will help the flower plant to grow quickly, and to its full potential, in the new soil.)
  6. Place the flowers and roots in one of the shallow holes in the pot.

***Repeat these steps 1-6 with each flower container you wish to plant***

Squeeze the Container and Push Roots Out

Squeeze container

Break up the Bottom Roots

Break up the bottom roots


Once you have all the flowers out of the plastic containers, the bottoms of the roots are gently broken up, and each plant is placed in the pot arranged as you like; you may proceed with the following steps.

  1. Scoop soil using the shovel, from the ¼ reserved potting soil, and put it around the base of the flower plant.
  2. Repeat step 7 for each flower plant in the pot.
  3. Fill the area around each flower plant from the remaining ¼ reserved soil until there are no roots showing.
  4. Gently press the soil around the base of each flower plant with your hands.

Scoop Soil and Fill the Area around Each Plant

Scoop soil and fill in

Step 5: Water and Care for the Plants

  1. Water the base of each flower plant in the pot, using a gentle stream of water.
  2. Wait for the water to soak in, and water again.
  3. Gently wash any soil off the leaves and flowers.
  4. Let the water fully drain out of the pot. (This may take 5-10 minutes.)
  5. Place the pot of planted flowers in the location you chose. (The flowers in this example will require a “Part Shade” location.)
  6. Water every second day, or keep soil moist.
  7. Pick off dead flowers and leaves every day, throw them away.

Water the Base of Each Flower Plant

Water the base of each flower plant

Finished Outdoor Potted Flowers

pots latest picture 2

Once you have completed Steps 1-5, the flower pot should look similar to this.

This photo taken July 4th, 2013,  about 3 weeks after planting

Flowers are now in full bloom

Potted flowers July 2013

More Information:

The flowers used in the above instructions can be found on these websites:

The flowers used in the above instructions can be found on these websites:

Here are some websites to help plan and care for your outdoor potted flowers:

Trouble Shooting and Problems

Below are some potential issues that you may encounter during this project and a list of suggested solutions.

Water does not drain from the soil.

  • The pot needs to have drainage holes.
  • Check to make sure the pot has drainage holes.
  • Check to see if the drainage holes are blocked.

The flowers are limp and the leaves are wilted.

  • Most flowers need to have moist soil.
  • Do not buy wilted, dried-out flowers.
  • Do not let the soil dry out.
  • Water the flowers before you begin planting.
  • Water the flowers after you finished planting.
  • Do not let the flowers sit exposed and out of the container without water for more than 1 hour.
  • Once you have finished planting the flowers and watering them, and the water has drained out of the pot; wait 24 hours for the flower plants to recover and leaves to strengthen.

There are many broken stems and leaves.

  • There may be flowers, stems, or leaves that break off in this process.
  • Be careful while handling the flower plants.
  • Remove any broken leaves or stems.
  • As long as there is a plant fully attached to the roots, the plant should grow and recover with continued care.

The soil dries out quickly.

  • Small pots dry out faster than large pots.
  • Small pots will need more frequent watering than larger pots.
  • Use water gel from your local flower shop to decrease watering times.


The finished outdoor potted flowers in this project will be quite heavy and weigh approximately 50-60lbs.

  • Bring the materials and equipment near the location you chose for your flower pot.
  • Follow these directions near the location you choose for your flower pot.

Some flower plants may be poisonous, and should not be eaten.

  • Read the labels before purchasing flowers.

Copy Right

All photos by Minde Wagner.


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