Embroidery and Stress Relief by Tina Kashian

Everyone needs an outlet for stress. Many of us have family and work demands. Writers are no exception. Creating stories is wonderful, and I’m grateful for my work. But I still struggle with deadlines and getting the kids to soccer and swim practice, piano lessons…and everything else on time. It’s a balancing act!

I’ve always enjoyed swimming laps. The water and the repetitive exercise is calming. But my latest form of stress relief is embroidery. My mother loved to embroider, and she created some beautiful pieces. Sadly, my mom passed away, but I decided to try my hand—or my needle—at embroidery.

To my surprise, I enjoy it. It’s not easy, and I’ve accidently poked myself with a needle once or twice. But I do feel a special connection with my mom as I work, and that makes me happy.

Embroidery is also relaxing and eases stress. After the kids are in bed, my husband and I sit on the couch and watch the television shows we want to watch. No Disney channels! I stitch during commercials. I’ve even solved plot problems for my cozy mysteries as I work.

Best of all, I have a pretty piece to display when I’m finished. I hope to make bigger pieces in the future—maybe even a dining room table runner. We’ll see.

Here’s a piece I’m working on.

“A delectable read.” —Bestselling author Shelley Freydont

When Lucy Berberian quits her Philadelphia law firm and heads home to Ocean Crest, she knows what she’s getting—the scent of funnel cake, the sight of the wooden roller coaster, and the tastes of her family’s Mediterranean restaurant. But murder wasn’t on the menu . . .

Things are slow in the off-season in this Jersey Shore town, but Lucy doesn’t mind. She doesn’t even mind waitressing at the Kebab Kitchen. Her parents have put in a new hummus bar, with every flavor from lemon to roasted red pepper. It’s fun to see their calico cat again, and to catch up with her old BFF, who’s married to a cop now.

She could do without Heather Banks, though. The Gucci-toting ex-cheerleader is still as nasty as she was back in high school . . . and unfortunately, she’s just taken over as the local health inspector. Just minutes after eating at the Kebab Kitchen—where she’s tallied up a whole list of bogus violations—she falls down dead in the street. Word on the grapevine is it’s homicide, and Lucy’s the number one suspect . . .

Recipes included!