What Does the New Normal Look Like #Family #WorldViews


Photo by Valeriia Miller on Pexels.com

What is your new normal?

Life has changed for all of us. Whether we like it or not, Covid-19 is an eyeopener. It shows that humans aren’t as invincible as we’d like to believe.

Like many others, I’ve been struggling to get my bearings. Half the time, I feel like a balloon floating in the sky with no real direction.

I’m stressed on so many levels:

Is it too soon to open up the economy?

How will we recover if we don’t reopen?

How many more lives will be lost?

Is my family safe?

My pet?

Me?

I’m sure these worries are running through our Prime Minister’s head, as well. I can’t imagine having to make the decisions he’s forced to do, and I thank him and all first line responders for all that they do to keep our country going.

My Mom lives next door in our RV park and took a fall in the early hours of Mother’s Day. I guess she called and called for help, but I didn’t hear her until a kind neighbor came and knocked on our trailer. I feel so horrible about that.

She’s in hospital now, and will be for quite a while. There’s liquid in her lungs which they removed with a giant needle (her words). They’re running all kinds of tests to find out why she’s so weak. Of course, I’m not allowed to visit due to Covid rules, but did manage to do a drop off of her cell phone charger and Kindle. A huge plastic shield greeted me just inside the doors and a health tech took my care bag from there.

I have a book deadline looming and have never felt less like writing.

I think these guys say it all

How about you? Are you coping all right? Feeling blue? Let’s chat…

P.S.

Here’s something that does make me happy- nature.

So This Happened… #Covid19 #Lifehappens


Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Thursday, April 2nd began like any other day. I visited my favorite blogs, checked in with Facebook, got hubby ready for work, and then went next door to visit Mom (I’m her caregiver). She hasn’t been doing well lately and I’ve been worried, so maybe I put off my early symptoms to anxiety- I’m not sure.

Mid-afternoon, I developed shivers that lasted a couple of hours and numbed my fingers and toes.

Then I developed a migraine (the first one I’ve had in years), and a fever. I was incredibly weak and tired- I didn’t even feed my poor kitty 😦

I fell into bed at four pm and didn’t get up until eleven-thirty today. Still weak, still sleepy, still worried about Mom and hubby.

What if I passed it on to them?

This is why it is so important to practice social distancing (though I hadn’t been out of my yard in weeks) and wear a mask if you need to go out.

Don’t be the reason someone you love dies.

If I’m away from the blogs for a while, please know I’m thinking of you and praying everyone stays safe. {{hugs}}

Dodging a #Health Bullet and #ClimateChange


ammunition brass bullets cartridges
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

This past week was a tough one for me. We returned from a quick trip home (2500 miles in 3 days!) tired and a bit depressed. The hometown four generations of my family grew up in, is dying.

What was once a vibrant, growing town deep in the middle of oil, gas and coal country has been hit with a downturn in the economy like nothing I’ve ever seen.

To say it was disheartening would be an understatement.

I understand climate change is a concern for everyone, but should it come at the cost of livelihoods? People are losing jobs, homes, hope.

There has to be a compromise and it’s up to us to find it.

Edson- 1939
Edson, AB 1939

 

A day or two after our return, I developed this horrible pain in my lower back, left side. I put it off to a kink and took my ever faithful pain killers. But, it didn’t get better. In fact, it became unbearable every time I laid down- like a fist grinding into my back.

I hate, hate going to the doctor (it’s been 6 years since my last visit, other than for Mom and grandson) so that’s my explanation for what I did next. I attempted a self-diagnosis via the internet.

Please, don’t do this at home!

Talk about freaking out! When many of the so-called professional sites started throwing the ‘C’ word around, I quickly changed my mind and decided to call Mom’s doctor and see if I could get in. I nicely explained my dire emergency to the receptionist and that Mom, darling daughter and buddy were all patients of the clinic- imagine my surprise when she didn’t care, lol. They were fully booked and not accepting new patients- sorry.

Okay, fine. Give it another day or two to mend on its own then. Except, it didn’t. That night I moaned and groaned the hours until dawn away. The moment the walk-in clinic opened I was there. Forty minutes later, I got into the clean, stylish office (not half as bad as I’d imagined) and met with a doctor half my age, who kindly didn’t laugh when I explained the diagnosis I had come up with. Instead, he assured me it was nothing more serious than a muscle strain- possibly caused by all the gardening we’ve been doing- and subscribed some pain killers and muscle relaxants.

When I arrived home, DH ran outside to hear the news and give me a relieved hug and kiss- after all, who else was going to do his laundry? 🙂

Moral of the story- Don’t let pride go before the fall. If in doubt, visit your physician, they’re there to help.

A few of the flowers in our garden.

amRNvQ45RLOHN4oPqaCmwA
Clematis

jFW+Xub0RUuZubLg1HJNVQ
Sweet potato vine, lobelia and petunias

wf6NGPsfSO6fi2Kq53RCpQ
Rose and monkshood in the background

Busy bee

Thea Hughes has five minutes to live… A Five-Minute Life by Emma Scott #NewRelease #Romance @EmmaS_Writes @jennw23


release blitz banner.jpg

A Five-Minute Life, an all-new standalone new adult romance by International bestselling author Emma Scott is Live!

FIVE_MINUTE_LIFE

Thea Hughes has five minutes to live.

A car accident stole her parents and left her with the second-worst documented case of amnesia in the world. She now has only minutes of experiences, of consciousness, of life…before her memory is wiped clean. The once effervescent artist with a promising future is reduced to scribbling with pens and paper, living an empty, quiet life, three hundred seconds at a time.

Jim Whelan is on autopilot.

A foster kid shuffled around the system since birth, he’s lived his entire life without knowing love…and it’s taken its toll—until he learned to fight back, carry his armor, and keep his head down.

Working as an orderly in the Blue Ridge Sanitarium, deep in Virginia countryside, Jim looked up…and found Thea.

When Thea has the chance to break free of her five-minute prison with a risky, experimental surgery, it could lead them both to an epic love they never thought possible… or one that could require the ultimate sacrifice.

A stand-alone, new adult romance.

Download your copy today or Read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2EaBVBk

Amazon Worldwide: mybook.to/AFiveMinuteLife

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2DlYSRY

About Emma:


Emma Scott is a bestselling author of emotional, character-driven romances in which art and love intertwine to heal, and in which love always wins. If you enjoy emotionally-charged stories that rip your heart out and put it back together again, with diverse characters and kind-hearted heroes, you will enjoy her novels.


Connect with Emma:

Stay up to date with Emma by joining her mailing list:

http://bit.ly/2nTGLf6

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2fqUULx

Author page: https://www.facebook.com/EmmaScottwri…

Reader group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/90674…

Sunday #Recipes #Baking up Memories #mgtab


person flattening dough with rolling pin
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Are you a baker?

 

For me, baking is like pulling teeth, something to be avoided as long as possible. But I do like the heavenly scent of baking in the oven and my family appreciates when I take the time to try, so I’m going to start a Sunday post with #Family #recipes that are as close to fail-safe as possible!

Today’s recipe comes from my husband’s side of the family. My S-I-L makes the best banana bread I’ve ever tasted, moist, flavorful, and decadent!

 

two green and yellow bananas plastic figures
Photo by Acharaporn Kamornboonyarush on Pexels.com

 

 

Here’s her recipe:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

 

1/2 cup butter or margarine

1 cup white sugar

2 eggs

1 cup (3 med) very ripe, mushy bananas

 

1 3/4 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cups choc chips

Cream butter and sugar in medium sized bowl. Beat in 2 eggs until smooth. Add bananas and blend. (If doing by hand, I recommend a potato masher. It dissolves the banana lumps like magic!)

In a second bowl (I don’t like dishes so I add to my first bowl. Just don’t stir yet :)) stir flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and chocolate chips. Add to banana mixture and stir just to moisten (Now you can mix the ingredients!)

Grease a loaf pan approx: 9x5x3 size. (I recommend the dark pans. I have an old, beaten up one that came from my grandma. It works like a charm)

Add the mixture to the pan and bake for about one hour. You can use a toothpick to test for doneness. Stick it in the top of the loaf, if it comes out clean you’re set.

Let the pan sit on a rack for ten minutes before removing. Use a table knife to score the edge away from the pan, turn it over on a plate, tap the bottom and it should (fingers crossed) release cleanly from the cookware.

Let cool completely before wrapping.

 

Here’s a picture of the recipe I’ve been using. You can see why I needed to set up these posts. I can barely read it anymore! lol

 

UVUURlYpRra9Mc1Qp+D3vQ

 

Do you have a favorite family recipe you’d like to share? Send me your info jbiggar@jacqbiggar.com and I’ll add it to my Sunday posts 🙂

Yay, the timer went off just as I was finishing this post, so I can show you the finished product.

 

uw4qrkc5riokbnqmeyhpw.jpg

 

Do you know what I see when I look at this beaten up old pan filled with homemade deliciousness?

I see my grandma baking bread and using this very pan to cook it with. I see my mom using this pan to make lemon poppyseed loaves (future recipe to share!) for Farmer’s Market. I see my S-I-L joking about my lack of baking skills and writing out this recipe from her grandmother so I could have that feeling of accomplishment.

I see… Love ❤

 

The Authors of Love, Christmas 2 put together a holiday recipe cookbook, and the best part- it’s #free!

 

Favorite Holiday Recipes: From the Authors of Love, Christmas 2

 

favorite-christmas-recipes_m

 

Favorite Holiday Recipes is a collection of recipes from the New York Times, USA Today and Award-winning, International, Bestselling authors of LOVE, CHRISTMAS – MOVIES YOU LOVE (THE HOLIDAY SERIES BOOK 2)
Read the small excerpts that preface each recipe as each author tells you why her recipe is important to her story.
Full of pictures, these mouth-watering recipes are sure to inspire your culinary (or eating) desires. Included are appetizers (mulled wine, pineapple punch, millionaire’s bacon), main dishes (lasagne, lobster mac and cheese, crock pot venison stew, traditional smoked salmon) and baked goods and desserts (fry bread, almond apricot coffee cake, double chocolate chip cookies, shortbread, cinnamon rolls) – in all, twenty-six recipes by the authors from all around the world.
These yummies are some of the authors’ favorites and a gift to our readers from us. We hope you enjoy these treats as much as we do.

 

Get your copy here

From the creator of the bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood, get ready for a new band of brothers. And a firestorm. Consumed by @JRWard1 #Suspense #BookReview


61ErjfWj8IL

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the popular Black Dagger Brotherhood series comes a brand-new novel about arson investigator, Ann Ashburn, who is consumed by her troubled past, her family’s scorched legacy, and her current case: chasing a deadly killer.

 

 

Anne Ashburn is a woman consumed…

By her bitter family legacy, by her scorched career as a firefighter, by her obsession with department bad-boy Danny McGuire, and by a new case that pits her against a fiery killer.

Strong-willed Anne was fearless and loved the thrill of fighting fires, pushing herself to be the best. But when one risky decision at a warehouse fire changes her life forever, Anne must reinvent not only her job, but her whole self.

Shattered and demoralized, Anne finds her new career as an arson investigator a pale substitute for the adrenaline-fueled life she left behind. She doesn’t believe she will ever feel that same all-consuming passion for her job again–until she encounters a string of suspicious fires setting her beloved city ablaze.

Danny McGuire is a premiere fireman, best in the county, but in the midst of a personal meltdown. Danny is taking risks like never before and seems to have a death wish until he teams up with Anne to find the fire starter. But Danny may be more than a distraction, and as Anne narrows in on her target, the arsonist begins to target her.

From the creator of the bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood, get ready for a new band of brothers. And a firestorm.

 

 

Biography

J.R. Ward

J.R. Ward is the number one New York Times bestselling author of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series of vampire books. She is a winner of the prestigious Romance Writers of America RITA award for Best Paranormal Romance and is a multiple RITA nominee. A graduate of Smith College, she was a double major in History and Art History with a medieval concentration in both and she still longs at times for a return to those days sitting in dark lecture halls, looking at slides of old triptychs and reliquaries. Prior to becoming a full time writer, she was a corporate attorney, serving for many years as the Chief of Staff of one of Harvard Medical Schools premier teaching sites. Her idea of absolute heaven is a day filled with nothing but her computer, her dog and her coffee pot and the Brothers, of course.

closed eyed man holding his face using both of his hands
Photo by Ric Rodrigues on Pexels.com

My Review

So much more than a love story!

Anne Ashburn fought for recognition most of her life. Her father was a decorated fireman, her brother is Chief Tom Ashburn, and her mother… not who she dreams of emulating.

Anne is the sole female firefighter with the 499 squad and as such feels even more pressure to stand out from the crowd.

When a warehouse fire steals her hand and almost takes her life, Anne has to choose whether to conquer her fears or let them burn her to the ground. She goes into rehab and slowly gets her life back- all except for a not-wise attraction to fellow firefighter Danny-boy McGuire.

Danny fell in love with Anne almost from the first moment he laid eyes on her. He admired her strength and tenacity in a male-dominated world and couldn’t deny the chemistry between them. But, Anne’s career goals and a non-fraternization rule stopped their hotter-than-sin affair. The hardest thing he ever did was cutting her hand off after she was trapped in a warehouse fire that damn near killed them.

Anne knows Danny is fighting his guilt over the loss of her limb, but she has bigger issues to contend with. As a rookie arson inspector, she comes upon a trail of suspicious fires and her investigation is making some powerful people worried.

Will Anne survive to bring an arsonist to justice, or will she become the latest victim?

This is the beginning of a fabulous new brotherhood from J.R. Ward. She has the incredible knack of creating characters readers fall in love with. Danny is the ultimate macho man, wide shoulders, muscular physique, but it’s his inner strength that drew me to him. He’s not perfect, and that only adds to the attraction.

This is one of my favorite lines from the fire:

“You need to go,” she ordered him. “Now.”

Danny stopped talking, his face going still behind his clear shield. And then he removed his oxygen supply. “We die together, then.”

He was every bit as resolved as she was, an unstoppable force meeting an immovable object.

Ward, J.R.. Consumed (Firefighters series Book 1) (Kindle Locations 259-261). Gallery Books. Kindle Edition.

But Anne’s story is just as powerful, maybe more-so. She has to overcome a debilitating injury not only physically, but mentally. The author does a superb job of putting us in her shoes.

Good God, she looked like an anime version of herself, assuming her character had gone through a coal mine shaft while being chased by a demon throwing compression bombs at her. Her blue eyes were too wide, and there was soot and ash still in her matted hair and all over her face and neck. The hospital johnny she had on was a mismatch to the fire’s temporary tattooing job, the cheerful pink bouquets on their white background making her seem like a trespasser in some grandmother’s wardrobe.

The initial burst of I-can-triumph-over-this collapsed, a house of cards hit by the cold, hard gust of her reflection.

Ward, J.R.. Consumed (Firefighters series Book 1) (Kindle Locations 657-661). Gallery Books. Kindle Edition.

This book deserves a 10 kiss salute!

cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21

 

 

Empty Nesters for the second, or is it third time? #Familyfirst #Chasingthedream #mgtab


bird-house-2727658_640

 

This post is bittersweet. One week from today, DH and I will say goodbye to our daughter and grandson as she leaves to begin her graduate studies in marine biology– across the country!

But, this isn’t the first time.

When she graduated from high school she said goodbye to our hometown, the town five generations of family on the maternal side called home, and moved eight hours and one province away. There, she worked, made friends, and raised her son for five years before deciding to go after her dream of becoming a marine biologist. She applied to university and was accepted!

 

library-438389_640

 

We were so proud of her! But now, she was even further away, twelve hours and a ferry ride. We made the decision to move closer so that we could support her and see our grandson grow up.

Then, two years later the unthinkable happened– he was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.

Those who know me, know how difficult and life-changing this has been for all of his family. There has to be constant care for T1D kids, and yet my daughter managed to not only learn everything from the dangers of the disease but how to manage it and allow him to enjoy a normal life.

From the JDRF website

Needs Constant Attention

Living with T1D is a constant challenge. People with the disease must carefully balance insulin doses (either by injections multiple times a day or continuous infusion through a pump) with eating and daily activities throughout the day and night. They must also test their blood sugar by pricking their fingers for blood six or more times a day. Despite this constant attention, people with T1D still run the risk of dangerous high or low blood sugar levels, both of which can be life-threatening. People with T1D overcome these challenges on a daily basis.

 

And through all of that, she worked hard at school and came out with a Bachelor of Science Degree with Honors this summer!

 

IMG_4809

 

But, her dream beckoned and she applied to universities to continue her graduate program working toward a PHD.

And once again, she was accepted! This time on the opposite coast in Newfoundland!

 

harbor-1284263_640

 

I’m excited and worried. Will the healthcare system be as good there as it is here? Will they find a nice place to live? How cold are the winters? We’re from Alberta, so we’re used to -30, but I’ve heard some crazy stuff about northeasters that makes me pray she has a reliable vehicle. Will he like the school there? Will they know how to help him if he needs it?

They’re driving across Canada to get there, so I’m going to be sick the entire time. Yet, imagine the things they’ll see, the memories they’ll make.

It’s going to be a long two or three years, but God, I love them and wish them the very best.

An inspiring family saga… Mornings on Main by @JodiThomas #WomensFiction #Romance @InkSlingerPR


 

From the beloved and bestselling author of the Ransom Canyon and Harmony, Texas series comes a powerful, heartwarming story about generations of family and the ironclad bonds they forge. MORNINGS ON MAIN is now available! Grab your copy today!

 

When Jillian James lands in the small town Texas community of Laurel Springs, she’s definitely not planning to stay—except to find a few clues about the father who abandoned her and destroyed her faith in family.

Connor Larady is a single dad, and the only one caring for his grandmother, Eugenia, who has Alzheimer’s. And now he has to close Eugenia’s quilt shop. When Connor meets down-on-her-luck Jillian, he’s out of options. Can he trust the newcomer to do right by his grandmother’s legacy?

Jillian is done with relationships. But as she grows closer to Connor and Eugenia, she must consider giving up her nomadic life for a future with those who need her.

An inspiring family saga that asks us to consider what love and chosen family really mean.

 

Grab you copy of MORNINGS ON MAIN here!

Amazon | Kindle | Barnes & Noble | B-A-M | IndieBound

Google Play | iBooks | Kobo | Book Depository

 

 

EXCERPT:

He held the truck door for her, then circled around and climbed in. “Where to?”

“Somewhere quiet. I’ve been surrounded by people all day.”

“I agree. The house has been full of friends since I got Gram home. I managed to run most of them off early last night so she could sleep and again this afternoon to let Gram rest a few hours before the quilters swarmed in.”

He drove through the Hamburger Hut, picked up malts and burgers, then crossed the bridge to the old part of town. The boards over the water were uneven, rattling her from side to side like a cheap, twirling carnival ride.

Jillian raised her eyebrows but didn’t say a word. Where they were going didn’t matter. She was with the one she wanted to be with. She needed to stop worrying about lin­gering memories and just relax.

He parked by a three-story building and climbed out.

She waited, not sure what to do. The malts and burgers were still on the seat beside her. Surely they weren’t stopping here. This place was scary even in daylight. She didn’t plan on staying around to see how it looked in less than an hour.

When he opened her door, he raised his arms to catch her. “Come with me.” He encouraged as if offering far more than a lift down from the high seat.

Her legs were plenty long enough to take the step out, but she slid into his embrace. He lowered her to the ground. For moment they were so close they touched as they breathed. She thought he might lean in slightly and kiss her, but he simply brushed his cheek against her hair. “Trust me, Jillian, you’re going to like this restaurant.”

He grabbed his raincoat from behind the seat, handed her the drinks and picked up their meal.

Following him into the building, she was surprised to see how sound the old factory seemed to be. The ceiling was tall, over twenty feet. Decaying ropes still hung from pulleys, and worktables stood dusty, silently waiting for craftsmen to ar­rive. The windows were high, ribboning the building with natural light.

Staying close, she whispered as though she might disturb ghosts, “What did they used to make in here?”

“I’m not sure. I think parts of oil rigs were shipped in and assembled here. I don’t know much about it, but there’s an old Christmas tree over there in the corner.” He pointed to a six-foot structure that was formed from a mixture of valves, spools and fittings welded together.

“They’re used at oil or gas well sites. I see them in the oil fields around. I’m not really sure why they call them Christmas trees. A roughneck would have to be drunk to mistake this jumble of metal for a tree.”

She turned in a complete circle. “Nice restaurant.”

“Oh, we’re not there yet.” He pointed to a staircase along one wall. “We’ve got rooftop seating.”

Suddenly excited, she climbed ahead of him, her shoes tap­ping a rhythm in double time. At the top, she waited impa­tiently with a malt in each hand.

He juggled the bag of burgers as he shoved the heavy door open. They stepped onto the rooftop with no one else around. She could see for miles in every direction. The trees, the fields. Oil rigs, scattered homes and barns, schools and churches.

“It’s beautiful!” The sun’s low glow gave everything a golden light.

He set the bag down and spread his raincoat out like a ta­blecloth on an air vent cover. “It’s not yet, but it will be.” He pulled up two empty five-gallon buckets to use as stools.

She sat the malts down. “You’ve been to this restaurant before.”

“Guilty. But I’ve never brought anyone here. Only you.”

While he unwrapped his burger, she looked around, point­ing out everything as if he was also seeing it for the first time. “Look how winding the creek is.”

“I had no idea there were so many trees.”

“Oh, look at those horses running.” She loved the way the evening clouds moved over the land, darkening the hues of the earth in shadow as they drifted.

“It’s winter now, not near as pretty as it’ll be come spring.” He set his hamburger beside hers and came to join her near the roof’s edge. “I lease that flat land out to a farmer who plants cotton every spring. That brown dirt will look like a green carpet in a few months.”

“I won’t be here in spring.” She let the wind catch her words as she turned away from him and the view. The black tar roof beneath her feet was all she saw now, but she stared hard, willing not one tear to fall.

This time. This place she would miss. When she left, Jillian knew memories would be packed in her heart. A year from now, a decade, a lifetime, she’d still remember the beauty of this view in winter and wonder how it looked in spring.

 

“Compelling and beautifully written.” —Debbie Macomber, #1 New York Times bestselling author on Ransom Canyon

 

Add it to your Goodreads Now!

 

 

 

About Jodi Thomas:

New York Times and USA Today’s bestselling author Jodi Thomas has published over 30 books in both the historical romance and contemporary genres, the majority of which are set in her home state of Texas. Publishers Weekly calls her novels “Distinctive…Memorable,” and that in her stories “[tension] rides high, mixed with humor and kisses more passionate than most full-on love scenes.” In 2006, Romance Writers of America (RITA) inducted Thomas into the RWA Hall of Fame for winning her third RITA for THE TEXAN’S REWARD. She also received the National Readers’ Choice Award in 2009 for TWISTED CREEK (2008) and TALL, DARK, AND TEXAN (2008). While continuing to work as a novelist, Thomas also functions as Writer in Residence at the West Texas A&M University campus, where she inspires students and alumni in their own writing pursuits.

 

 

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

 

His Perfect Imperfection by @NataszaWaters #BookReview #Romance A 5 star #Read!


51eiXaX++BL

 

By the award winning and bestselling author Natasza Waters, comes an epic contemporary love story of imperfect romance.

Mika rents a quaint cottage on a seaside estate. With a group of amazing friends and her disease in remission, she’s happy. In a world spellbound by beauty, she hides the scars of her disorder beneath baggy clothes. Perched on the cliff, her mysterious landlord lives alone in a stately glass house, although his home is transparent, there’s no penetrating the blue abyss of Cain’s eyes or the coldness of the striking man who disappears for days at a time.

Women are Cain’s business. The fantasy he sells has made him a wealthy but empty man. Within a short time, he’s lured by Mika’s beguiling spirit. When life cracks its whip at her, he’s there to catch her. Discovering her secret, he teaches her passion, but it’s her love he desires, not her flesh. To keep her, he’ll have to confess his past sins and convince her that beauty is more than skin deep.
(Dedicated to the millions of people who are unique, not flawed, by Psoriasis and other skin diseases.)

 

InD’Tale Magazine:
Five amazing stars from the premier Indie magazine InD’tale: “Cain and Mika trade their ashes for beauty and transform sorrow into something exquisite….Ms. Waters has penned an original tale with unforgettable characters and proves that beauty is more than skin deep.”

Book Viral:
“Riveting and wholly engrossing, it takes a lot to stand out in this ever popular genre, but author Natasza Waters knows exactly how to deliver an outstanding read. Book #4 in the popular A Warrior’s Challenge series, Code Name: Luminous is founded on pulsating action and a well-constructed plot with a notably observed balance between suspense and romantic tension, but its Natasza’s ability to create wonderfully endearing characters that quickly draws the reader to her pages.”

“Another strap yourself in, bite your nails and fall in love again read from one of the most promising romantic suspense authors today!”
~TJ Mackay, Publisher, InD’tale Magazine

 

 

 

Natasza

Biography

Author Natasza Water writes a cup of romance with a twist of steam. Living in a quaint seaside town called Sidney by the Sea, which is reminiscent of Cabot Cove in the Murder She Wrote mysteries, Natasza even has a bike like Jessica Fletchers. Reared on Agatha Christie, Nat’s love for suspense and thrillers spills into her own writing. With an enormous coffee by her side, she’ll be spending her retirement penning new stories for those who love to read.
After majoring in English in her early years, Natasza altered course. A lifelong working relationship with the marine industry began when she became an officer with the Coast Guard. Natasza debuted her contemporary romance novel “Too Grand For Words” in 2011. Fans who enjoy a cup of romance with a twist of steam won’t be disappointed. Crafting stories with pieces snipped from real life and the sea—particularly the West Coast, find its way into plots puddled in action and suspense, with unsung heroes and heroines aplenty. Her bestselling series, A Warrior’s Challenge beginning with Code Name: Ghost has won two R.O.N.E. awards and honors the service members who keep our countries safe and the strength it takes to love a warrior. A twenty-four hour day finds Natasza drafting her next novel, networking, and thinking about doing her laundry, but instead, she just buys a new pair of socks. Sleep you say? Not so much! Visit her website at http://nataszawaters.com/ and sign up for her newsletter. Be “in the know” before everyone else.

 

 

My Review

 

Mika finds a quaint little cottage to rent on a multi-million dollar piece of property, but she wasn’t expecting the drop dead gorgeous landlord that came with the place.

Cain is a loner. He’s learned to close off his emotions and runs a successful business as a male escort. He thinks he knows all there is to know about women, but Mika has a secret he aches to solve.

How can two so different people, one carrying scars she cannot hide and the other with scars buried deep in his soul, heal one another?

This story is so much more than your average opposites attract romance. It’s about overcoming life’s adversities and finding strength in the arms of the right person.

A soulmate.

I was born with eczema and spent most of my childhood in pain-filled misery, but that’s nothing compared to the suffering people with Psoriasis have to endure. Natasza confronts the mental and physical toll this disease takes on her heroine’s emotional journey. Love is in the eye of the beholder and Cain’s devotion to Mika is what a truly great romance is all about!

I give His Perfect Imperfection 5+ lovely kisses- A Must Read!

cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21

A Distant Heart by @Sonali_Dev #womensFic #amreading @Barclay_PR


ADistantHeart_Badge

Celebrate the Release of A DISTANT HEART! 

 

Infused with the rhythms of life in modern-day India, acclaimed author Sonali Dev’s candid, rewarding novel beautifully evokes all the complexities of the human heart in A DISTANT HEART.
 
“Searingly asks its characters what they’re willing to do for the people they love… explores family dynamics, class issues, and many layers of guilt, hope, and determination in ways that are both distinctly Indian and universally luminous. Another beautiful, breathtaking novel from a not-to-be-missed author.” – Kirkus, STARRED Review

 

a-distant-heart

 

Add A DISTANT HEART to your TBR pile on Goodreads! Then keep reading to get an EXCLUSIVE first look and enter the giveaway for a prize pack from Sonali that includes a $50 Amazon gift card and print copies of A Bollywood Affair and A Change of Heart!

 

Check out the Book Trailer!

 

 

 

 

Title: A Distant Heart

Author: Sonali Dev

Genre: Romantic Women’s Fictoin

Release Date: December 26, 2017

Publisher: Kensington

Page Count: 100k

Print ISBN: 978-1496705761

Digital ISBN: B06XZR97YK

 

Synopsis:

 

Her name means “miracle” in Sanskrit, and to her parents, that’s exactly what Kimaya is. The first baby to survive after several miscarriages, Kimi grows up in a mansion at the top of Mumbai’s Pali Hill, surrounded by love and privilege. But at eleven years old, she develops a rare illness that requires her to be confined to a germ-free ivory tower in her home, with only the Arabian Sea churning outside her window for company. . . . Until one person dares venture into her world.

Tasked at fourteen years old with supporting his family, Rahul Savant shows up to wash Kimi’s windows, and an unlikely friendship develops across the plastic curtain of her isolation room. As years pass, Rahul becomes Kimi’s eyes to the outside world–and she becomes his inspiration to better himself by enrolling in the police force. But when a life-saving heart transplant offers the chance of a real future, both must face all that ties them together and keeps them apart.

As Kimi anticipates a new life, Rahul struggles with loving someone he may yet lose. And when his investigation into an organ black market ring run by a sociopathic gang lord exposes dangerous secrets that cut too close to home, only Rahul’s deep, abiding connection with Kimi can keep her safe–and reveal the true meaning of courage, loss, and second chances.

Infused with the rhythms of life in modern-day India, acclaimed author Sonali Dev’s candid, rewarding novel beautifully evokes all the complexities of the human heart.

 

ADH_meme1

 

Available at:

AmazonB&NiBooksKoboBAMIndieBoundWalmartHudson Bookseller

 

Enter the giveaway for a prize pack from Sonali that includes a $50 Amazon gift card and print copies of A Bollywood Affair and A Change of Heart!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

A Distant Heart Excerpt

Copyright © 2017 Sonali Dev

 

Freedom was a beautiful thing! Mumbai in all its grimy, gray, pre-monsoon glory flew past Kimi as her auto-rickshaw sped between cars and pedestrians with the zeal of a bastard child born of a Diwali rocket and an immortal god. She almost asked the driver to slow down, but with the wind whipping her ponytail and the driver’s mop of curls in a joint symphony she felt as recklessly brave as the whirring vehicle racing along on its three wheels.

Emblazoned across the dashboard of the rickshaw was the goddess Durga dancing on the corpse of a demon like the evil-hunting badass she was. Bowing to her was Bollywood’s favorite superhero, Krish, with his muscles bulging like fat rubber balls and his hair coiffed high. In a perfect background score to Kimi’s life’s drama, the techno-beat-laden remix of an old Bollywood number drowned out the cacophony of horns the driver left in his wake.

The combination was delicious and exactly worthy of what she had just done. What she was about to do.

Freedom!

You know who else was badass? Kimaya Kirit Patil, that’s who.

There had been one hundred and twelve instances over twelve years when each breath had been a fight and her limbs had turned to mist. She had fought. Not like a warrior, because that would involve the use of said limbs, but like someone drowning, where all you could do is keep the water out of your nose, so it wouldn’t keep the air from your lungs. Breathe out. Breathe out. She had followed those breaths. Grabbed on to those thin wisps of air like lifelines and made herself live one grip at a time.

Then the cure she had waited twelve years for in a sterile room had come. A heart had become available. Surely that meant something. Someone had died, after all, so she might live. Someone with the exact kind of blood and plasma that would let a foreign heart beat within her chest with the confidence of an indegene. Surely that meant she could now have what she never thought she would—all that she had gazed upon from the windows of her room, sealed tight with every technology known to man, so no germ, no pathogen would dare venture into her world, let alone an entire human being. Except Rahul—he had ventured. And then gone on venturing until he was all the way inside.

He’d helped her understand calculus and the nuanced stories of Premchand. He had known how atoms split, why Europe went to war twice within half a century, and the why and when of each invention that transformed the history of civilization. He had touched her, despite promises he’d made. Because it was exactly what she had needed. His gloved hand in hers. He had given her anything she had asked for when everyone else had been too afraid. And she had known that if she lived, if her parents got what they had sealed her in a room twelve years for—a daughter who lived—she would spend the rest of that life taking care of him. The way he had taken care of her.

Except she hadn’t considered the most important part of her plan: him. She had returned from Hong Kong with her new heart and he had looked at her with those dark-tar eyes turned even darker by all that emotion when she ran to him. “You’re running,” he had said, as usual choosing the least words to say the most.

“Yes,” she had said, knowing exactly why every single hard-won breath had been worth it. But then she had told him her grand plan: the two of them living happily ever after.

As always she had asked him for what she wanted. What she hadn’t for one moment considered that he didn’t also want.

He had thanked her for the offer to love him forever, and passed on it.

The person who had kept her from being alone when she was locked up in a room had finally shown her what loneliness was when he walked away from her, leaving her alone in the crowded world she had craved for so long.

No one had the right to that kind of power.

She leaned back into the overstuffed vinyl seat of the speeding auto-rickshaw feeling awfully light.

It only made sense that losing a part of yourself would bring lightness.

No. She wasn’t doing that. She was not going all morose and doing the Tragic Princess shit anymore. That wasn’t her. No matter how people saw her, that was not her. Not anymore.

Actually, it had never been her. Why the hell was she letting herself go down that path now?

She was past the Rahul-induced sadness. Done with it. He’d made his intentions clear. They were no longer—well, they just weren’t anymore. Nothing, anything, they just weren’t.

Plato would ask if the fact that they weren’t anymore meant they had never been. Or was it Aristotle? You know who would know? The one person who she could not, would not, call for a fact check. This wasn’t a Tragic Princess thought, but here it was anyway: She had to stop thinking of life in terms of thoughts she saved up for Rahul like seashells collected on a walk along the beach. It was time.

 

ADH_meme2

 

Praise for A DISTANT HEART

“Dev crafts another thrilling story filled with intense drama, deep emotion, and well-developed characters; a can’t-put-down book.”—Library Journal, STARRED Review

“Thrilling action sequences and a complex, weighty romance propel this smart, sensitive story. A natural wordsmith, Dev dives into the psyches of disparate characters with voice-driven prose that includes both chilling insights and quirky humor… This poignant, sensual, and exciting tale captures a range of emotions and conflicts.”Booklist, STARRED Review

“Award-winning Dev returns with another of her emotionally resonating stories that explore, in depth, the intersection of friendship, love, sacrifice and desperation… There is a tremendous richness to this story… A truly captivating tale of friendship and love. Dev always delivers!”RT Book Reviews, 4.5 Stars, TOP PICK!

 

 

AuthorPhoto1

 

About Sonali Dev

Sonali Dev’s first literary work was a play about mistaken identities performed at her neighborhood Diwali extravaganza in Mumbai. She was eight years old. Despite this early success, Sonali spent the next few decades getting degrees in architecture and writing, migrating across the globe, and starting a family while writing for magazines and websites. With the advent of her first gray hair her mad love for telling stories returned full force, and she now combines it with her insights into Indian culture to conjure up stories that make a mad tangle with her life as supermom, domestic goddess, and world traveler.

Sonali lives in the Chicago suburbs with her very patient and often amused husband and two teens who demand both patience and humor, and the world’s most perfect dog.

Sonali’s novels have been on Library Journal, NPR, Washington Post, and Kirkus’s lists of Best Books of the year. She won the American Library Association’s award for best romance 2014, and is a RITA® finalist, RT Reviewer Choice Award Nominee, and winner of the RT Seal of Excellence. She was hailed by NPR.org as a ‘stunning debut’.

Connect with Sonali at: Website | Facebook | Twitter| GoodReads | Amazon

 

ADH_meme3

Who is the girl in the red beret? Marriage Before Death by @UviPoznansky #BookReview #Historical


51BNsJH+rhL

 

 

After D-Day, her photograph appears on the most-wanted Nazi propaganda posters. Who is the girl with the red beret? She reminds him of Natasha, but no, that cannot be. Why does Rochelle step into his life when he is lead by SS soldiers to the gallows? At the risk of being found out as a French Resistance fighter, what makes her propose marriage to a condemned man?

 

 

 

 

About the Author

Uvi

Uvi Poznansky is a bestselling, award-winning author, poet and artist. “I paint with my pen,” she says, “and write with my paintbrush.” Her romance boxed set, A Touch of Passion, is the 2016 WINNER of The Romance Reviews Readers’ Choice Awards.

Education and work:
Uvi earned her B. A. in Architecture and Town Planning from the Technion in Haifa, Israel and practiced with an innovative Architectural firm, taking a major part in the large-scale project, called Home for the Soldier.

Having moved to Troy, N.Y. with her husband and two children, Uvi received a Fellowship grant and a Teaching Assistantship from the Architecture department at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. There, she guided teams in a variety of design projects and earned her M.A. in Architecture. Then, taking a sharp turn in her education, she earned her M.S. degree in Computer Science from the University of Michigan.

She worked first as an architect, and later as a software engineer, software team leader, software manager and a software consultant (with an emphasis on user interface for medical instruments devices.) All the while, she wrote and painted constantly, and exhibited in Israel and California. In addition, she taught art appreciation classes. Her versatile body of work includes bronze and ceramic sculptures, oil and watercolor paintings, charcoal, pen and pencil drawings, and mixed media.

Books and Genres:
Her two series won great acclaim. Still Life with Memories is a family saga series with touches of romance. It’s latest volume is a WWII spy thriller. The series includes Apart From Love, My Own Voice, The White Piano, The Music of Us, Dancing with Air, and Marriage before Death. The David Chronicles is a historical fiction series. It includes Rise to Power, A Peek at Bathsheba, and The Edge of Revolt.

Her poetry book, Home, is in tribute to her father. Her collection of dark tales, Twisted, and her Historical Fiction book, A Favorite Son, are both new age, biblically inspired books. In addition, Uvi wrote and illustrated two children books, Jess and Wiggle and Now I Am Paper. For each one of these books, she created an animation video (find them on YouTube and on her Goodreads page.)

 

My Review

Marriage before Death, is the fifth novel in the Still Life with Memories Series, but read well as a standalone novel.

Lenny Kaminsky must face the fact his beautiful, beloved wife is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Her memories are fading, and make their time together all the more precious.

They met and fell in love in France during the days leading up to D-Day which makes the war they are fighting now-Alzheimer’s-all the more poignant and heart-wrenching.

I love this author’s writing. She brings the turbulent wartime landscape to vivid, unforgettable life and yet guides the reader through with a beautiful love story.

A story of survival!

I give Marriage Before Death 5 lovely kisses- A Highly Recommended Read!

cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21

Singing in the Rain #Inspiration #amwriting #Globalwarming


desert-749692_640

It’s raining!

I don’t know about you, but those of us in the northwestern part of Canada are celebrating. Every year it gets hotter and drier and the earth is aging seemingly before our eyes.

It was always a dream for DH and I to move to Vancouver Island. We came here on our honeymoon and every year after that we could afford the trip. I craved the beautiful cedars, rhododendrons, ivy, and ferns. The lush greenness of the rainforest, the scent of the ocean on the air, the slap of the waves upon the shore… I could go on and on, lol.

Thirty years later we made the move and it was just as amazing as we remembered!

20161206-IMG_6348

Photo curtesy of Tofino Photography

I’ve made new friends, explored this magical place I’m blessed to call home, and learned to feel the pulse of the land.

And it worries me.

The birds and wildlife that count on the weather to keep the forest green and the food plentiful, are suffering.

Global warming is not simply a term-it is a view of our future. Unless we do something to change it. Not soon.

Now.

We’ve just come through the worst fire season in our province’s history. I shudder to think how many animals perished along with our forests, crops, homes–lives.

The hurricanes in the southern United States destroyed countless businesses, displaced thousands of people, cost billions of dollars.

And that’s only the tip of a quickly thawing iceberg.

I know this seems all doom and gloom, but it doesn’t have to be. I think we’re being warned, shape up, or face the consequences.

The tide is turning. Many areas now are banning plastic bags, urging economical use of gas and electricity, and promoting more green spaces in cities. This is all good, but we need to do more.

Being part of the baby boomer generation, I think much of the blame lies with us. We grew up in a time of exploration (the first trip to the moon), innovation (personal computers and cell phones), and excess. Lots of excess! Plastic water bottles, disposable baby diapers, takeout foods. You name it, we’ve done it.

I’m amazed by our growth and embarrassed with our neglect.

And I thank God every day that the new generation has learned from our mistakes. My grandson knows all about recycling, composting, energy efficient bulbs, healthy eating, exercise, growing your own sustainable produce.

And he’s ten.

This tells me that we still have a chance.

I’m writing this, drinking herbal tea and listening to the rain as it dances on my roof, and I’m grateful because Mother Nature is forgiving if we just make an effort.

The Healer by LizAnn Carson #Fantasy #BookReview #amreading


The Healer

Imagine a Land…

Where the air is clear, and life is lived simply but fully;

Where the seasons follow the sun from sowing to harvest, from winter’s hibernation with music and stories through the revels and feasting of summer;

Where people called Weavers, people with special powers, walk the byways to bring healing, entertainment, and knowledge to towns and hamlets.

And now, imagine this peaceful land under threat…

Her Healing Powers Were Ripped Away

Willow left her childhood behind to become a Weaver, one of a select group of men and women who bring their skills as Healers, Bards, and Scribes to the scattered hamlets of the Midland. She has never been without access to the planetary Aura, the all-pervasive energy that enhances her healing skills, as well as assisting with tasks like starting fires and communicating across distances.

Then a space pod from a devastated planet disrupts her peaceful existence. It carries two grievously wounded men and threatens not only the Aura, but a way of life. Nor is the Aura as benign as everyone believes, and Willow pays the price.

A shadow of herself, she sets out through spell-clad hills to find her own healing.

 

 

About the Author

LizAnn Carson

I live with one husband and two cats on the west coast of British Columbia, in a city that’s large enough to have all modern conveniences, but not so large as to have hours-long traffic jams or heavy-duty pollution. I can follow a trail to my local supermarket, or be downtown in twenty minutes.

Yes, I spend much of my time writing (and editing, formatting, critiquing for other writers, battling recalcitrant computers, and occasionally tearing her hair out). I enjoy a variety of crafts. Recently I have been learning to play early music (Baroque and earlier) on my baritone ukulele – it works! I have studied herbology and homeopathy, hands-on and distant healing.

Diverse interests, all grist for an author’s mill.

My Review

A young woman named Willow, sets out on a journey of self-discovery and ends up on a path to save the destiny of her planet.

The author does a commendable job of drawing the reader into her world, painting the picture of a strong, willful heroine desperate to find the source of a disruption to her precious healing powers.

Filled with fresh, visual lines such as:

Willow woke to find early morning sunlight brushing her bed.

this is a fantasy adventure you won’t want to miss!

I give The Healer 4 lovely kisses

cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21cropped-kiss21

Count Your Blessings #Familyfirst #Inspiration #mgtab


friend-1753870_1280

Count Your Blessings

The last couple of weeks have been filled with emotional upheavals for our family. My grandson, who is type 1 Diabetic, has suffered some setbacks, developing asthma and possibly low blood pressure and scaring the heck out of his mother.

She’s doing her fifth year of studies at university to become a marine biologist (proud momma here!) and just received notice that her five-year tenure in family housing is coming to an end. This means a big move for both of them and a lot of changes. The boy-child has to have specially trained staff at school and the girl needs something she can afford as a single mother. Some tough decisions are coming up.

A few days ago my husband and I lost an old friend of ours. It was fairly sudden and hit us pretty hard. Life is such a precious gift; one we often take for granted. He was an important part of my teenage years and I will greatly miss him.

Count your blessings.

Today, another dear friend flew to the island. We spent the day showing her around, laughing, talking, and enjoying the warmth and love we share. It became a day of healing.

img_3767

Count your blessings.

Time brings change, it’s inevitable. Don’t become so busy in the day-to-day grind that you forget to stop and…

Count your blessings. {{hugs}}

Jacquie Biggar

#Holiday #Recipe Easy Peach Cobbler by @pat_preston


holidayromancerecipes-jpg

 

#Holiday #Recipe Easy Peach Cobbler by @pat_preston

 

1 c. self-rising flour

1 c. milk

1 c. sugar

1 stick butter

1 can of sliced peaches (lite or heavy syrup)

 

Heat oven to 350 and melt butter in baking dish

Mix flour, sugar and milk together with whisk.

Pour this on top of melted butter in baking dish.

Open can of peaches and pour on top of mix.

(I use lite peaches and the cobble is always sweet enough.)

Put in oven and bake about 25 minutes or until top is

golden brown.

 

peach-cobbler-holiday-jpg

 

IT STARTED WITH A FLING…

Six years ago, ambitious med student Marla Grant gave into temptation with a gorgeous man. Now a busy doctor and a loving single mom, the past comes back to haunt her when she learns the powerful, persuasive man of her long-ago fling and the unsuspecting father of her child is cutting off the charitable contributions to the community clinic where she works.

Billionaire Carson Blackwell has never forgotten bright, beautiful Marla. When he discovers that she runs the clinic his grandmother’s foundation funds, it’s the perfect chance to put an end to his ongoing infatuation and use his leverage to cement a new business deal. He needs a fake girlfriend for one week in Hawaii, and Marla is just the woman for the job. It’s a win-win situation, until they realize the attraction between them isn’t feigned, and the heat has never died down. Only the secrets they’re both keeping stand in the way of a future together and a love that could last a lifetime.

 

one-week-collage-780-with-tag

 

Read Chapter 1

Christmas Sale  99¢ !  Nov 27 to Dec 31.

 

Links:

Amazon   http://amzn.to/1SCo3li

Nook http://bit.ly/1VmaHru

Kobo   http://bit.ly/1Vma8Oe

iBooks http://apple.co/1W6y6l6

 

guest-blog-photo-jpg

Author Bio

 

Patricia Preston writes fun, spicy romantic novels with a feel-good atmosphere where love matters most. In her new contemporary series set in the fictional town of Lafayette Falls, Tennessee, romance creates havoc, heartache and humor for a cast of unsuspecting doctors until they realize love heals all. Besides contemporary romance, she also loves writing short comedies and historical romances set in New Orleans. Must haves in her writing cave include sweet tea and music. Besides writing, she loves bargain hunting, movies, taking country road trips, and anything containing chocolate. Her dream-come-true would be a townhouse in the French Quarter.

 

She welcomes readers to visit her at

www.patricia-preston.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/pat_preston

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Patricia-Preston-Author-Page-127261867330755/

Exchange of Power by Andrea Bills #RomSuspense #amreading @XpressoReads


Exchange of Power
Andrea Bills
Publication date: August 10th 2016
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense

Hannah Mackenzie is married to the love of her life Nick, and they’re beginning to think of starting of a family when that dream comes to a tragic end with the sudden death of her husband. Just when Hannah believes her grief will consume her, she finds her beloved basset hound Presley and her under attack at their home. When she calls in for help from her and Nick’s lifelong best friend Austin he comes over immediately.

Austin brings with him a truth that betrays everything Hannah ever believed and a very sexy bodyguard Jared Tully. Hannah is dealing with very raw emotions from her past while trying to deal with a very real attraction of the present. When it all comes to blows in ways she never would have dreamed she has to make a decision.

Hannah’s flung into a life she never knew existed along with Jared and Austin while they battle an unknown evil that’s targeting her. When they discover the truth they realize the stakes are high and very dangerous.

This is the first in the Power Series and sets the making for a new series that will be sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.

Goodreads / Amazon

EXCERPT:

He turned when he felt her eyes on him, “Like what you see?”

She felt herself blush immediately even though embarrassment was a little late at this point between them.

“I’m allowed to look.” She made her way over to him trying to look coy. She ran her fingers up his arm,” and touch.”

Jared grabbed her and pulled her over to straddle him.

“You’re allowed to do whatever the hell you please.” He sealed the statement with a kiss. When he finally pulled away Hannah was completely breathless. She started to take what there was of his workout shirt off of him when his phone rang.
“Screw ‘em. I’ll call whoever it is back.”

“Oh good.” Hannah giggled as he started undressing her. They lips never left each other’s which made the process a little more complicated by fun.

Jared started to plant kisses down her neck as his hands roamed her legs and hips. Just as he was about to take her nipple in his mouth the phone rang again. Jared growled as he laid his head between her breasts.

Hannah held his head there as she let out a frustrated breath, whoever it was wasn’t going to wait.
Jared kissed her one last time before he got up to reach his phone.
Hannah started to reach for her clothes, but Jared threw a blanket at her.

“This isn’t over I’m going to get rid of them and then finish what we started.” He winked at her as he answered his phone.

 

Author Bio:

Andrea spends her time while she’s not dreaming up friends and villains alike chasing after her two kids and husband at their home in rural West Virginia.

Her guilty pleasure once the kids are asleep is to read. She reads everything she can get her hands on and then she reads it over and over and over again. Her all time favorite book is secretly tucked away under her bed looking very war battered from the hundreds of reads.

The Power Series is her breakthrough series as an indie author. She attributes her writing skills to her overactive imagination, and her husbands wacky dreams.

 

All About Romance- Interview

1.What do you think is the best way to publish these days?

It’s hard for me to speak on traditional publishing since I’m strictly self-publishing right now. However, I think the beauty of the self-publishing market rising is that authors don’t have to be limited now. I’m currently working on a book that I’m hoping will be traditionally published. That doesn’t mean I’ll stop self-publishing, but if I manage to get a coveted traditional book deal I’ll be able to learn from people who have experience in the business. It can only make me better. If I don’t I can still continue to do what I love, and that is write. There’s nothing stopping you from sharing your story with the world!

  1. What are your favorite genres to read? Why?

As a whole my favorite genre is of course romance. I’m a sucker for a good love story. As far as sub-genres within romance, I will literally read anything. I don’t think I’ve found one that I don’t love. I tend to lean pretty heavy on the paranormal and suspense just because that’s what I write. However, I love historical too, there’s something about a man in a kilt; am I right?

  1. How do you approach starting a new book?

I have such an overactive imagination that starting a new book is pretty much something that just comes to me randomly. I don’t sit down, and force ideas out onto the paper. I could be having a dream and wake up (yes I keep pen and paper next to the bed), or driving along and a song takes me off on a new adventure. Anything can be the start of a new book for me. I just try to always have a pen and paper handy to write down the ideas, and once I get enough of them that’s when I put pen to paper to bring it to life.

  1. What are the best writing books or blogs you’ve ever read?

I love reading Jane Friedman’s blog. She has a little bit of everything about writing and publishing on there. I usually go there for a specific question I’m wanting answered, and the next thing I know I’m an hour deep in her blog reading something completely unrelated.

  1. What are your non-writing hobbies, or what do you do to relax?

I love playing volleyball. I am currently on a league that plays a couple of times a year, and I look forward to the start of the season like a kid waiting for Christmas. I just recently got into running too. It’s more of a love/hate relationship though. Some days I can’t wait to get out there and see how far I can push myself. Other days I’m pushing myself to simply get my shoes on. It’s fun all the same though! When you’re writing a lot and being idle it’s good to try and sneak some active hobbies in when possible.

  1. Do you have any personal heroes/heroines?

Wow. What a question. Several people come to mind who inspire me, but as far as a personal heroine it’s tough to nail down. I think my heroine would be my grandmother. She lost her mother when she was young, and her father not long after She met my grandfather while he was stationed in England, and became a war bride of World War II. They married, and had my uncle and then my grandmother had to sail to America alone with a toddler. She made her way to our tiny rural town in West Virginia all by herself. She lost a child along the way. My grandfather passed before I was born but her and my mother told me stories all the time.  I couldn’t imagine the things she endured. She was my best friend as a child, and always encouraged me. She was a beautiful Godly woman and a true heroine.

Love this answer!

  1. Have you had any unusual or noteworthy occupations?

If you research self-publishing your own book one thing that people will preach is having sales and marketing experience. They say it really gives you a leg up on getting your book out there and noticed. Now I have a Bachelors in Business, but had never really held a sales job. It kind of intimidated me to sell things as I can be a bit shy. So I took a job as a car salesperson. It was fascinating really. I did actually learn a lot, and even though car sales are a bit pushier than book sales the concept is the same. I still can’t believe I did it, but I met a lot of great people!

  1. What was your best date ever?

Goodness. This is really pushing my memories. My husband and I have been together for twelve years so that’s a lot of dates to ponder. I don’t know if it’s considered a date since we were already married, and didn’t have kids yet? One day while we were living in New Orleans we carpooled home from work, and when we drove past our favorite bar they had a huge banner up stating that, that night was the first night for crawfish. If you’re from the south, you know how fantastic crawfish are at the beginning of the season. We hurried home changed our clothes and went back. I have no idea how many pounds of crawfish we ate or how many mixed drinks were poured but it was a fantastic impromptu date night. I love spontaneity so that’s probably why it stands out in my mind more than others.

Sounds like fun!

  1. Tell us something you’re really proud of?

Well I mentioned earlier that I have been getting into running lately. My best friend is an avid runner, and she’s always doing some unearthly long run. So she convinced me over the summer to do a half marathon with her. Maybe it was the wine talking, but I signed up! On August 20, 2016 I woke up at an hour that she be deemed illegal it was so early and braved the terrible smells of the porta johns. Then ran 13.1 miles with my best friend. It was an incredible experience, and one I never dreamed I’d achieve.

Wow, congrats!

  1. Can you confide something you wish you were better at?

I wish I was better at being girly. I have naturally curly hair so it’s usually a mess, I try to get it to calm down, but it has a mind of its own. I can usually slap some make up on in five minutes or less too. I see these women who their hair fixed just so, and beautiful art worthy make up on and I cringe. Somebody teach me!

I know what you mean, lol

GIVEAWAY!

Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)

$25 Sephora Gift Card

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

XBTBanner1

A Holiday Traditional #Recipe from #USAToday Love, Christmas author @jacqbiggar @mimisgang1


usatodaysanta-lc-tweet

 

 

The Christmas season is my favorite time of year. An air of festivity takes hold as stores bring out their holiday decorations and old time favorites play on the television.

One of my favorite Christmas recipes came from my grandmother, Waldorf salad. Every year I’d look forward to seeing that fancy glass bowl filled with chopped up apples taking pride of the place on our dining room table. It was Grandma’s donation to our holiday dinner.

We’ve kept the tradition going, even though she passed away a few years ago. Now, when I look upon that simple bowl of salad every year, I feel her presence among us and smile.

 

picture1

 

WALDORF SALAD

6 Spartan or Mac Apples

3 Stalks Celery

1 cup Chopped Walnuts

1 cup Mayo, 2 tbs. sugar, 4 tbs. milk whipped together

 

Use lemon juice or citric acid to whiten apples.

Peel and chop apples and celery into bite-size pieces, sprinkle with lemon juice. Add walnuts. Stir in dressing and refrigerate until use. Enjoy.

 

 

Categories

Fruits, Nuts, Vegetables, Salads, Christmas, Easter, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, No Cook, Quick

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 100.2g
Amount Per Serving
Calories

120
Calories from Fat

45
% Daily Value*
Total Fat

5.0g
8%
Saturated Fat

0.3g
1%
Trans Fat

0.0g
Cholesterol

0mg
0%
Sodium

89mg
4%
Potassium

262mg
7%
Total Carbohydrates

19.1g
6%
Dietary Fiber

2.5g
10%
Sugars

13.2g
Protein

2.6g
Vitamin A 3% Vitamin C 13%
Calcium 2% Iron 3%
* Based on a 2000 calorie diet

Nutritional details are an estimate and should only be used as a guide for approximation.

***

In my story, Silver Bells, part of the Love, Christmas Collection on sale now at your favorite vendor, my heroine, Christy, has a young daughter recently diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes.

Their lives now revolve around carb counting, blood testing, and insulin needles. This is from the Canadian Diabetes Association:

Type 1 diabetes is a disease in which the pancreas does not produce any insulin. Insulin is a hormone that helps your body to control the level of glucose (sugar) in your blood. Without insulin, glucose builds up in your blood instead of being used for energy.

Your body produces glucose and also gets glucose from foods like bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, milk and fruit.

The cause of type 1 diabetes remains unknown. It is not caused by eating too much sugar, and is not preventable. The current thought is that type 1 diabetes occurs when the body’s immune system destroys the cells that make insulin.

 

While children with type 1 have to be vigilant with their care, they can still enjoy active, healthy lifestyles. We’ve come a long way in treating this life-threatening illness, and with any luck sometime in the near future, a cure will be found.

 

Here’s an exclusive excerpt from Silver Bells:

“Mommy, Mommy,” Jill cried, skipping into the kitchen. “Guess what? We’ve been playing I Spy. It’s so fun, and I was winning too.” She came and wrapped her arms around Christy’s waist. “I’m hungry,” she announced.

Christy bent over and kissed the top of Jill’s head, then smiled at the elderly woman entering the room. “Was she good?”

Claire Michaels, her neighbor and good friend, snorted. “Do geese lay eggs?” she asked, and grinned at Jill’s giggles. “Of course she was good. That child is never a problem. How about you? Did you enjoy your run?”

Annoyance warmed her cheeks to a rosy hue. “I did until some idiot took offence to me drawing him and stole my work.”

Claire gasped. “Phone the police. He can’t get away with that.”

Christy grimaced. “He kind of can. I should have asked his permission first. I’ve just never had an issue before.” She shrugged and let go of Jill so she could open the fridge to withdraw the soup she’d made earlier.

“Want to stay for dinner? There’s plenty.” She waved a hand back and forth over the tricky gas burner until it lit, then set the pot of hamburger soup on to heat.

“Stay, Aunty Claire. Stay,” Jill begged.

Claire laughed. “How can I say no to an invitation like that?” She sat at the oval country style kitchen table with a relieved sigh and watched Jill dance around the island in the center of the room. “She never stops. It’s hard to imagine…”

Christy’s stomach rolled. She nodded and concentrated on cutting slices of fresh baked whole wheat bread to go with the meal. Yeah, it was hard to imagine her bright, cheerful little girl had developed the dangerous disease of Type 1 Diabetes. But it was true.

The shock had taken a while to overcome. To think a simple trip to the clinic over a weak set of kidneys ended in emergency at the hospital. Then came a week spent in the children’s ward learning just how threatening her sickness could be—and that there is no cure. It was a lot to take in and deal with. It broke her heart every time she had to poke her daughter’s fingers in order to take blood glucose readings, twelve or more times a day, twenty-four-seven. And then there were the needles for insulin injections. Some days it was hard to remember a life before carb counts and two-hour checks, but the worst were the nights. The fear was always there she’d be fast asleep and Jill would go low and need immediate care, or dangerously high requiring ketone checks and lots and lots of water to flush her system.

The stress had ended her marriage. Kevin was a good man, but not up to dealing with his less than perfect—in his eyes—little girl. And that was okay, Christy didn’t have the reserves to deal with his crisis of conscience anyway.

To read more, pick up your copy of love, Christmas today!

d6739-love2bchristmas

Put a song in your heart with 20 all-new Christmas Romances from NY Times, USA Today, and national best-selling authors. Each brand-new title is inspired by a Christmas carol and will lift your spirits and bring on the holiday cheer. 

Amazon: http://bit.ly/LoveChristmasUS 

B&N: http://bit.ly/LoveChristmasBN

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/love-christmas-holiday-stories-that-will-put-a-song-in-your-heart

Apple: https://itunes.apple.com/ca/book/love-christmas-holiday-stories/id1158227218?mt=11&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Add to your TBR pile: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32316229-love-christmas—holiday-stories-that-will-put-a-song-in-your-heart

Diabetes! Diabetes! Diabetes!


Great post on the turbulence of Type 1 Diabetes by Literary Dust

I don’t have diabetes myself, but my husband does. Before I met him I didn’t really know anything about it. He is Type 1, so there is absolutely no cure or getting rid of it. EVER!

Diabetes

This is just the stuff in the daily life of a diabetics own personal hell. Besides the insulin pens, he has the cheapest brands possible because even with insurance coverage to have a better brand is still a rip off. Also on another note there is not a generic prescription for insulin either. It is funny or rather not funny since if he doesn’t take the insulin he would obviously die.

Info on Diabetes!

Sorry Hansel, but you don’t develop diabetes by eating too much candy!

The thing is people just don’t get it. Diabetes isn’t just something you can take medicine in the morning for and you are good for the day. No! Sugar is constantly…

View original post 81 more words

Take Time for Simple Pleasures #Summer #Family #mgtab


picnic-745754_1280

 

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is to pack an impromptu picnic lunch and go for a drive with DH until we find that perfect spot to while away the afternoon.

Sometimes I think we get so caught up in the hectic pace of everyday life we let the simple pleasures go by the wayside.

Funny thing though, looking back on my life it’s those sort of days I remember the most.

Rising early and driving deep into the forest to my dad’s favorite fishing spot, then walking through the bog, losing my shoe and having him rescue it for me. 🙂 Catching a creel full of trout and grayling and then stopping for lunch along the riverbank.

Wicker_creel

Attribution: By Sobebunny – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=7274675

 

Or going for a drive up and over the Great Divide to pick raspberries with my aunt who had a condition that had us kids giggling, but must have been frustrating and possibly dangerous for her. You see, she had a condition where she would be talking and all the sudden she’d fall asleep mid-sentence! When she woke up, she’d continue the conversation even though it might be fifteen minutes later.

 

raspberry-397940_640

 

One of my favorite times was a picnic into the Cadomin mountains with my grandparents. My grandpa was sick with cancer at the time and wouldn’t see the next summer, but for that day, life was good.

 

spring-276014_640

 

Don’t forget to take time to enjoy the simple pleasures, they’re the ones that matter the most.

Jacquie Biggar