Holiday Cheer!

One week away!   I’ll be in the hallway waiting for you. I love this event, the makers who are part of this unique event, and our host, Danielle.
I can’t promise that “WHERE TWO RIVERS MEET” will be there with me, though. The book is finished but at the publishers. Proof it is on its way is below!!! Don’t worry. l’ll devise some type of scheme to get you a book somehow, someway, and as soon as possible.
I’ll be bringing a new look, including a logo, to promote my Minnesota Main Street Women trilogy, my past writing, and my future.
As soon as I know the date of delivery of “Where Two Rivers Meet,” I’ll also set up a book launch date.
I want to thank all of you. The book has been long in coming, and that I’m sorry about. But through your encouragement, and you know who you are, thoughts, and prayers, I recovered from a series of sicknesses that almost took me out completely. Miracles do exist. I came back to the book and new direction I was taking with it. Thank you. I hope to see you soon.
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Finally finished

I feel like a rudderless ship, a childless mother, a banana-less banana bread (I wish I knew of more idioms). I’ve sent my latest novel, “Where Two Rivers Meet” to the publisher. I don’t know if I should jump for joy, sing, or look for a new project (I have plenty of things to do.). I feel like celebrating, but food is in the crockpot for supper. I have the weirdest feeling.  I am also changing a few other items: a new business card, new informational poster, and a a new way to display my books.  In addition, I will be making some changes to my webpage (IF I CAN!) .
A little preview drawn by son Todd of what is to come:
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A bit of history and a good question


Buffalo, Minnesota, and the rest of the state will be hot and steamy tomorrow, but I’ll be there for the 40th Arts and Crafts Festival.  From 9-3:30.

One week later, you can find me at another of my favorite events.  Downtown St. Joseph, MN, hosts a wonderful art event, Millstream

The weekend after Labor Day, Saturday AND Sunday, Sept 9 and 10, I’ll be sitting under my large umbrella at the Rice, MN, Arts and Crafts event,

I’m proud to be counted among this group in Mankato, as well. The Deep Valley Book Festival is an amazing  event for  published authors. This event is Oct. 7.


More events to come but keep November 11, 2023.  I’m hoping to launch Where Two Rivers Meet, my prequel to the two other Main Street Women novels. Place, time, and new information coming soon.

Clearwater Heritage Wednesday Get-Together

hollow cottonwood along the Mississippi at Clearwater’s old steamboat landing.

The doctor put away his needles. I am on the mend. Join me next Wednesday, August 2nd, for a little presentation, a bit of conversation, a few tales, and a tidbit of gossip in my Minnesota Main Street novels and “Around Clearwater.”

May be an image of text that says 'CLEARWATER HISTORICAL PRESENTATION Author, and local historian Cynthia Frank-Stupnik will be presenting on the rich history of Clearwater. Join us for some light refreshments, and incredible history on Clearwater, Minnesota! Cynthia will be highlighting information from her book, Around Clearwater. Books will be available for purchase & signing. AROUND ND CLEARWATER AUGUST 2nd at 6:30pm Lions Pavilion Free All Ages Welcome HERITAGE Clearwater pH'

An update

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Just an update….I hoped to have “Where Two Rivers Meet” launched in August. I am so close to the end and have been for two months. Unfortunately, a twist of fate took place beginning around Easter. My husband, sister, and I were hit with Covid for the first time. We all suffered one way or another, but I think Frank got off the easiest..he took a 3-day nap and woke up better. Both sister and I really came down with it. I ended up at the ENT with a staff infection in my sinuses. That was April. Feeling somewhat better, a few of us went to some antique and occasional sales in Central Minnesota. I fell face down in a chicken coop. Put a lot of stress on my already burdened arthritic body and ended with a nasty shiner. Sometime around Memorial Day, I started having TMJ issues. Went to doctors and even Urgent Care. Lots of medicine but nothing took the pain away for too long. Finally went to the dentist after three weeks. The endodontist found a nasty abscess. Oral surgeon loaded me with novocaine and pulled the very sick tooth. was pulled, only for me to feel well for two days before dry socket took over. Just ended the week of antibiotics for the took infection when I started having severe side pain. We raced to Urgent Care only to be sent to the hospital. I had a temp of 103 and bladder and kidney infections that had gone to sepsis. The worst pain was to come overnight in the hospital. Sat after CT scans, doctors found a kidney stone blocking everything between the kidney and bladder. The staff raced me to surgery to have a stent put in.
I am home and trying to heal, knowing after a month of antibiotics, I face another surgery to remove stent and stone. I am feeling less pain, but working to fight the exhaustion.
I have a number of events coming up, two new I am excited about:
Thurs, July 20, I’ll be selling and signing at Munsinger’s Arts in the Park.
Aug 2, I will be presenting, signing, and selling during Clearwater’s History week. I believe more information will be posted but I think it is at 6ish on the 2nd at the Lyons Center. (Clearwater, MN)
Buffalo Arts and Crafts takes place August 19, 2023 at 9 (Buffalo, MN)
Millstream Arts and Crafts will be Sunday, August 27, in St. Joe, MN. 11-5
I hope to see you there. I’ll have more news about “Where Two Rivers Meet.”

A Salute to the Women of Main Street

I have to apologize for not writing sooner, but I have been writing like crazy, preparing Where Two Rivers Meet for publication.  My deadline has changed, thank you, Lord, and I should be ready to launch in August now. I especially wanted to send regards to all women in March Women’s History Month, but as I said, I had to make some choices, and that was to keep writing.

Of course, in addition to my first two protagonists, Jennie Phillips (Scruples & Drams) and Maude Porter (Pins & Needles), I would have saluted my new protagonist, Abigail Robinson Camp Porter, who became the first woman in our little village.  She had the spunk, the style, and the nerve to take on duties as the housekeeper for the village hotel in a wild-west burgeoning town of all men in 1855. She eventually married fur trader, farmer, and future Minnesota legislator–Thomas C. Porter, who also was an earlier settler.

May be an image of 1 person and text that says 'Abigail Robinson Camp Porter'

I can relate though to Abigail’s aloneness and vulnerability.  I began a new career at what was Northern States Power at the Monticello Nuclear Plant in Monticello, MN, while it was still under construction way back in November 1969.  I felt a bit overwhelmed when I found out at the time, the plant had like 3,000 men from NSP and other construction and electrical companies working on site and I was the only unmarried woman.  I met a few men and dated a few, but still went to Rapid t City to find the one.

So much news to tell you—I signed a contract with Heritage Books, Inc, out of Maryland, my current publisher of Pins & Needles,  Postcards from the Old Man, and Steppes to Neu Odessa.   They will now be carrying, publishing, and promoting my first novel Scruples & Drams as well. For those of you who did not realize it, North Star Press, my first novel publisher pretty much cut down on their business after the owner died.   Now all of my books except for Around Clearwater, which is published by Arcadia,  will be living at Heritage Book, my long-time associates.  This will make my life so much easier.  I will always have a number of books on hand for selling at various events.

What a surprise! Browsing through some of the books at Target, I found my book, Around Clearwater, along with others like it.  I know Barnes and Nobel carry it as well.  Don’t forget, I  have copies of my books and charge less.  It was a treat to see.


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I have not signed up for spring events.  But my summer/fall/winter are on the docket.  I will be sending the information on to you soon with dates and times. But I am excited to add at least one new event in July at the St. Cloud’s Munsinger-Clements Botanical Gardens. I am so excited to be accepted.


Happy spring,



Girls from Main Street sending their warmest advice

If Jennie from Scruples & Drams were still alive, I know she’d have made the same decision to carry DOVE chocolates in her drugstore.  Oh, she’d carry Cadbury, Fry’s, Nestle’s, and Hershey’s of course.   There is nothing like good chocolate whether you love dark or milk, or with nuts or with caramel. Good chocolate should melt in your mouth.  Last year, I made a life-changing that I hope I can continue on for the remainder of my baking life.

My husband and I had stopped at one of our neighborhood grocery stores so I could pick up a quick couple items to finish baking cookies.  It was a crazy house with attitudes blaring. Customers caught me every other aisle to announce, “All out of flour, all out of sugar, or all out of salt.”  In addition, wire bins stood empty, and shelves glared out of stock, shouting, “Bah Humbug!”

We were coming to the end of Covid, or so we had been promised, but it was the continuation of shortages everyone was facing.  I had to think fast, my husband was waiting in the car.  I had plenty of staples, but time had grown short, and I hadn’t bought little things like Hershey Kisses for my peanut blossoms, a recipe given by a dear friend, yes, you, Marian K. I don’t mind making changes but what else could possibly top a blossom????   The store had a couple of shelves of different types of sweet delicacies like Old Fashioned Christmas hard ribbons and crystally candy in yellows, reds, and greens, some with sweet fillings, but no Hershey Kisses.  They had a scattering of chocolate stars, peanut butter cups, and many varieties of Dove.  I grabbed two bags of the milk chocolate Dove and checked out, hoping I had no reason to return soon.

I mixed my peanut butter blossoms–double batch because I felt hopeful.  After peeling each little squarish bundle of goodness, I topped each of the dozen freshly baked and still hot cookies with a promise.  I finished the job of plopping and pushing down, just a bit, promises.  After a cooler bite of the new concoction, still warm and melty-like but one that was kind of deformed and broken, I was sold.  Jennie, Maude of Pins and Needles, and Maude’s mother Abigail in Where Two Rivers Meet, the girls of Main Street, would agree.  They are the best cookies in the world.   They wish you the Merriest of Merry Christmases and the happiest of happy New Years.

Take a few moments during this busy season to focus on Dove’s “promises”: 1. Compliment someone.  You’ll feel better than they (he/she does) do. (Sorry, the English teacher in me can’t let it go. 2.  Life happens between an inhale and an exhale!  3. When life isn’t going right, go left.  And the girls’ favorite: 4. Dare to cross the line.   If you remember the messages in the books, you’ll know the line they crossed to help someone or two.

And a word of wisdom from me.  Put on a pot of tea, pot of coffee, or even make hot cocoa.  Grab a whole cookie, one that isn’t broken or deformed, sit down, put your feet up and enjoy a few minutes of solitude and deliciousness.  You deserve it.

“…..Lean your ear this way…..” from “Jolly Ole St. Nicholas”

Hello. Thanksgiving isn’t here yet, but I am posting my Christmas blog because Stearns History Museum published one of my stories in “CROSSINGS” about St. Nicholas coming to our house when I was a child. Here is the article, following is a nice, but a bit long, and insightful documentary about the start of Christmas. Some of the mythology I taught to high schoolers and college students. So much fun.

Feel free to share my website or my Facebook post with others…..
UPDATE:  I have one more event to share with you.  December 3, 9- 2   Makers Market, St. Cloud. at the Regency on St. Germain, across from the Paramount Theater…Artists & Makers | Makers’ Market (    This will be the last time of the year to buy my books.  I promise they are great gifts, and I’ll give you deals.
Look forward to the SPRING and my announcement of a new book launch…This time for Where Two Rivers Meet, a prequel to Jennie and Maude’s stories.

Finding the path

May be an image of text that says 'Your journey is not the same as mine, and my journey is not yours, but if we meet on a certain path may we encourage each other. UNKNOWN THESIMPLICITY HABIT'This post is absolute TRUTH. God blessed me with a few talents, maybe writing is my strongest suit. I love to write poetry and have won a few awards. I have written both creative fiction and non-fiction, and have published and won a few awards as well. But when it comes to real crafting, drawing, sewing, or any other handwork, I’d say I deserve nilche, zero, nothing, even F. I told my husband when we were first married that if he lost a button on a coat or jacket, buy new. While this isn’t as true as it sounds, I have to admit when I was a freshman in high school (is this supposed to be freshperson now?), I earned a D on a blouse I sewed for putting in the sleeve in the wrong direction.). I think I have improved a bit, but not really proving it anymore.
I have recently (like two years ago) taken up a bit of crafting with my own card designs with special sayings or my own poetry. Most or many go back to the earth the tree grew from in the first place.
I’ve copied or posted some of my son, Todd Stupnik’s, artwork. He is amazing. Early in his career, like aged 2 or 3, he showed promise in his field with airplanes and Star War figures. Our other son, Matthew, has equal talent, but uses his talents in woodworking and redesigning his house. Lovely work. My husband who has all sorts of knowledge uses his hands to build, plumb, and electrify what needs to be done. My sister can craft with the best of everyone. She sees color and organization as a delight to re-create. My friends sew, quilt, knit, etc. and these gifts are beyond my realm of thinking.
So if we meet on our trail for developing new thoughts, or ideas to be recreated, let’s greet each other as sisters and brothers. For all of God’s gifts are good and perfect (Dr. Henry Morris). “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning” (James 1:17).