Young Family Springtime Tradition by Kate Young

My family loves the outdoors. Hiking, swimming, kayaking, and playing on a beach. You name it, we love it! Since moving to our little town in the foothills of the North Georgia Mountains, we’ve begun a new tradition of kicking off the beginning of spring by kayaking on the Etowah River. The first warm day we get, we load up the kayaks, pack a few drinks and snacks and get out on the water. It starts as a nice easy glide up the river with smiling faces and friendly banter.

But what you have to understand about our family, is that we are all extremely competitive. So, within minutes we go from paddling upstream and enjoying serenity of the birds and lovely scenery to an all out Olympic style competition. As you pass by our family, chants from each shared kayak of stroke, stroke can be heard over the sloshing water. We also receive a lot of laughs and strange looks and a few comments about our decision to go work harder by traveling upstream. With burning arm muscles and tense jaws, we fight the current with tremendous speed in order to be the winning team. My youngest, who usually rides in the middle seat of my kayak will be antagonizing her brother opposite her with good natured ribbing. It’s a true mystery where she gets her intensity from (wink wink). By the end the losing team is always demanding a rematch as we relax and ride downstream and have our well-earned snacks.

Life has always been sweet on Georgia’s Peach Cove Island, but a case of murder has Marygene Brown down in the pits . . .

For generations, the women of the Brown family on Peach Cove Island have been known for their Southern sass and sweet homemade desserts at their beloved Peach Diner. Since their mother’s passing two years ago, Marygene has been stuck in Atlanta while her sister Jena Lynn has been running the family business. Now Marygene has left her husband and returned to her hometown, where she can almost feel Mama’s presence.

But all is not peachy back home. Marygene has barely tied on an apron when a diner regular drops dead at the counter. When it turns out the old man’s been poisoned, Jena Lynn is led away in handcuffs and the family eatery is closed. Now, to save her sister and the diner, Marygene must find the real killer. With some startling assistance from her Mama’s spirit, Marygene will be serving up a special order of just desserts . . .

Includes Seven Recipes from Marygene’s Kitchen!