#Flashback Friday – My review of Suzie Carr’s ‘The Dance.’

Good morning everyone and welcome.  With the arrival of author Suzie Carr’s new book, ‘Beneath Everything’, people are talking about it in a big way.  However I wanted to share with you my review of her book, ‘The Dance,’ originally published on 29-July-16.  This book comes from the author’s heart and is one that you don’t want to miss.  Come see why Suzie’s work is so popular.  Read on.  #FF.

Hello Everyone and a warm welcome to you all.  Earlier this summer I finished Suzie Carr’s The Dance.  This book is the talk of the town so stop on by to see why.

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“You can tell a lot about a person by the way she dances,”  

Brooke from ‘The Dance’

Jacky is a dog whisperer who is very successful and loves her job.  Her family relations are strong and family comes first.  Jacky is sexually deprived which frustrates her.  Although she tries, she has little success.  She is quick to react and the tiger in her really emerges.  She is stubborn and does not back down very easily.   Despite this, she is a natural when it comes to the dogs and is able to get them to change their negative behavior.

A twist comes which totally changed the course of the story.   The author clearly describes Jacky’s frustration and her thoughts about her desire to turn back time to the place where she felt complete.  At the same time, she is forced to accept that some actions cannot be undone.

Brooke is a beekeeper who lives with her grandparents.  Her entire life is bees and it shows in her calm manner.  She hires Jacky because she cannot control her dog, a beautiful beagle who has been an asset to her life.  The tone of her voice is gentle, which reached out to me.  This character was an example of what a wise woman would be like, soft spoken, positive, and lives the life she wants the world to see.

Sophie is Jacky’s step daughter who lives with her.  She is very intelligent and grounded and mature for her age.  Her demeanor is very soft and peaceful.  A decision changes the course of her life, making her a strong young woman.  I was impressed by her determination for her long term vision.  Her fearlessness shows the reader that nothing is impossible.  It was beautiful watching this character develop.

However, Sophie is haunted by her past and ritualizes a strange memory that reminds her of why she is hurt.  Will she ever escape her pain?

 The Dance Book Cover

“Even her skin tickled as the light breeze blew in through the window, covering her in the romantic scent of a heartfelt high.”

Suzie Carr The Dance.

All of the characters are dynamic and complex.  The players are so well described that you get a sense that they are actual living people.  You will get into their heads and become aware of their desires and experiences.

The ‘mother-daughter’ relationship really takes hold right away.  The emotion that both characters share set the tone in these greatly written scenes.  It is easy to understand both sides to the story.  Both of them lead the reader along, wondering about the when.

Many times I was educated on certain facts as I was reading.  I picked up this book knowing nothing about bees and was actually a bit fearful of them.   Here the author goes into great detail about the experiences the characters had when around bees.  She visited a bee apiary for research, which is clearly seen in the story.  I applaud her for being brave and going for it.  Because of this, the characters are living the story instead of just playing along.  By the time I finished the book I had a much better understanding about bees. They add greatly to the story and the reader can see the affect they have on the characters.

The author offers many words of wisdom throughout the story that will enhance your reading experience.  You will feel your soul expand.

The author offers a sense of humor several times.    It will have you laughing.  The laughs are all in the right places and well thought out.

By the end of the story I felt like I had been on this incredible spiritual journey.  Suzie is a very passionate and positive storyteller who will grab your heart.  Plan your next free day for the ride and allow yourself to be swept away into the depths of your imagination.

Five Stars.

Until Next Time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2016/2017

My Review for KA Moll’s ‘Blue Ice Landing’

Hello everyone. Today I have a special read for you. If you haven’t heard of KA Moll’s ‘Blue Ice Landing’, listen up. This book is really exciting and rich in descriptions. The main players, Coby and Coy, radiate their own uniqueness. This is fine work and is worth checking out. Just the title itself drew me in. Read on!

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What really got me excited about this story was the location – Antarctica. I have always been intrigued by that continent and it was a treat to be able to virtually visit there through the eyes of the main characters. I got to see how they adjusted to a place that is completely dark for half of the year and be away from their loved ones.

My first impression of Coby was that she was shallow spiritually. She is estranged from her family, making life tougher for her. She has no one to bond with so naturally she accepts an brave opportunity to go work in Antarctica at the South Pole.

I picked up a macho vibe from Coby. The saddest thing is her lack of self love, meaning that she can’t admit she needs help. Instead she lets her resiliance take over. Deep inside she carries around an armor of surpressed emotions, including shame and fear, creating a tortured spirit.

A glitch in the system cancels Coby’s work assignment, changing the course of the story. As disappointed as she is, she doesn’t let it get her down. She instead humbles herself with her new job. This is a good move on her part and shows character growth. She grew on me and I felt my feelings changing. The reader will identify with her ambition to better herself.In the book Coby encounters situations that are helpful with forgiveness. I applaud the author for adding this necessary life tool. Through this she was able to explore new talents, including one she shares with me – cooking. This added depth to her character and I felt a bond with Coby.

Antarctica

Coy is an adventurist and an optimist and is enthused about her upcoming assignment to Antarctica. She understands the job is temporary, but still she knows she will miss the close bond she has with her loved ones. She is a physicians assistant with a heart of gold.

A secret from her past hinders a critical part of her growth. These are touching scenes and ones that will open your heart.

Coy is strong and never gives up. While on her assignment, she is faced with a tough situation where there is no turning back. During specific memorable scenes, she fully expresses her emotions. Her frustrations and fear were clearly seen through my eyes. I could relate to her feelings and you will too.

Both women have their own opinions, adding good drama. Also the story moves at a steady pace and is easy to follow. The romance in the story is addicting and keeps you on your toes. Another plus for the story is the research the author did for the topics discussed. It is fun to learn new things.

Plan an afternoon so that you can fully enjoy the everything of this intriguing story.

Five Stars

 

Blue Ice Landing Cover

 

Here is an excerpt from ‘Blue Ice Landing’

With a long-debated beer in hand, Coby moved to a table near the dance floor. It was crowded with intertwined couples, swaying to a mix of fast and slow. This is not what you need to be doing, she told herself. She guzzled number two and ordered a third. If she didn’t watch it, she wouldn’t stop. Who knows, maybe she was already to that point. She chugged it down as her gaze fell to the pretty blonde in the corner. When the woman rested her head on her boyfriend’s shoulder, Coby’s thoughts hurled back to the bar. Dear God, she wanted. She wanted so much. She wanted, and she felt her need as if it were a gaping hole. She shook her head and guzzled. Why did she do this to herself?

 

Purchase ‘Blue Ice Landing’

 

Until Next time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2017

Out with the old, in with the new.

A lot has been happening here this year. First of all I want to thank of the authors whose books I reviewed. More reviews are on the way, so stay tuned. Also I want to thank all the people for all of their support. I couldn’t have done it all without you.  And a special thanks to author KA Moll for stopping by two weeks ago to chat.  For more on her interview see the link below:

Meet Author KA Moll

After much discussion, we finally decided to turn the back room of our garage into a bonus room. The room is about 300 square feet and is perfect for a baseball party. We held them in our living room that had limited seating. In here we can put in a few couches and maybe a recliner.

Before pic

Previously, this space was an ugly cheap looking workshop with the only window painted shut. There was no air circulation in there, creating a stale environment. We mostly stored unused items here. It was depressing to go in there and we rarely visited the room. We saw the potential, which is why we pursued the project.

The glass in the windows provided some light, but only part of the day. Before the ceiling and walls had been all paneling, creating a dark cave. There was an old doorway leading into the garage behind where the TV now sits.

On the day of demo I remember feeling as though a weight was being taken off my shoulders. No more dense space. The first to go was the makeshift corner workstation that was in another dark corner. Secondly, was the old ugly window as well as the glass French doors. Who ever thought of putting these types of doors in a this type of building, I don’t know. Instead we put a single door and an attractive window, adding a good amount of light to the room.

Room 1

The process took several weeks to complete.   Each day we’d go take a peek at the room and see the progress. It wasn’t until they patched the wall’s doorway that I began to see the finished result in my head. By the time the drywall was up, it was already a new room.

Above the room, we created attic space for additional storage. We now have pocket lights in the ceiling, casting an inviting vibe. Ideally, a wet bar would be nice, but at least we have a place for beverages. Maybe some day.

Room 2

Along one wall we created closet space. Eventually we’d like to convert one of them into a powder room. That would make the space ideal. For now it’s a great place to hide boxes. The barn doors add a rustic touch. We had considered pocket doors but I’m so glad we chose these instead. Now all we need to do is furnish it. A couple of couches and maybe a recliner would be really nice. Or if someone is getting rid of a billiards table, let me know.

 

New Exterior

This is the finished outside of our once useless room. We plan to put a large plant in the corner to the right of the front door. We have also considered getting an awning to shield the front window from the intense summertime sun. We enjoy sitting outside throughout the year and this patio is one of the spots where we like to hang. Who would have thought that an old dusty room could be transformed into something as nice as this? I can totally see us with our friends in here rooting for the Dodgers. On the grill we’ll have the burgers and dogs.

We are very excited that our room is ready to be the party room. Baseball season is just around the corner too. Go Blue all the way 2017.

As I mentioned above, I’ve read some really good books this year, including KA Moll’s ‘Blue Ice Landing’, an adventure that takes you to the far ends of the earth. This is one you don’t want to miss. I will be sharing my review for this book next week, so mark your calendars and tell your friends. I am looking for people to discuss her book.

Blue Ice Landing Cover

 

Until next time,

Lynn

 

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Copyright 2017

 

Meet Author KA Moll

Good afternoon friends and welcome.  Today I have a special treat for you.  Author K.A. Moll has stopped by to chat.  She is busy underway with several writing projects, one of which is discussed below.  I read her book, ‘Change of Heart’ and reviewed it on 26-Aug-16.  This is definitely one to put on your reading list.

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About all you can do in life is be who you are. Some people will love you for you. Most will love you for what you can do for them, and some won’t like you at all.

~ Rita Mae Brown

What is ‘Change of Heart’ about?
It’s a story about high school sweethearts, reunited after two decades. It’s about how these two women move beyond hurt feelings and shattered trust to rekindle their flame that still burns hot. 

What was your inspiration behind the book cover for ‘Change of Heart’?
The cover for ‘Change of Heart’ is from a watercolor created by my biological sister, Cindy. Her work is also on the cover of “For A Moment’s Indiscretion.” I don’t know how she managed to get inside my head to capture this story in her painting…but she did. I was adopted as a preemie and didn’t find her until I was in my forties. It never fails to amaze me how we connected. It feels as if she’s been a part of my life forever.  

Did you do any types of writing while you were in school?  If so, did you receive any awards or recognition for your work?
I was on the school newspaper in high school and I took writing/literature courses in college. 

Was there anyone or anything in your life who encouraged you to write?   If so, what did they do?
My wife is my number one beta reader and my biggest fan. I couldn’t accomplish half of what I do without her support and input.

Is there a different genre that you’d like to write a story in and why?
No, not really. If there were, I’d have probably already written it. To date, I’ve written books in romance, paranormal, and suspense/thriller.

One day you get the call asking if you’d like to make ‘Change of Heart’ into a movie.  Who would you cast as the main players?
Wow…that’d be a nice call. Hmmmm…I guess Lily Gladstone for Jack…but she’d need a haircut. And for Courtney…I guess Stana Katic.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
Thank you. Thank you so much for reading my books and for opening your hearts to my characters, most of whom have considerable emotional baggage.

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Can you elaborate on what has worked for you to regenerate creativity?
So far, I’ve been fortunate to have not needed much regeneration. If anything, I’ve had to beat stories down so that one could move forward. If I did need to regenerate, I’d listen to smooth jazz or walk a nature trail. 

Have you ever created a character (either main or supporting) who was so awful in personality that even you felt dislike toward?
Jahi in “Haunting Love” was a nasty piece of work. 

What musical groups do you follow and can you describe their style? 
I like Fay Wolf, Hem, and k.d. Lang.  

What is your favorite vegetarian meal?
I like most all vegetarian dishes a lot…especially Indian and Cajan…Mmmm, red beans and rice. But…I suppose my favorite would have to be my wife’s broccoli casserole. 

Let’s give a shout out to TriPub books.  What would you like to say to them?
…That I couldn’t be more pleased…but they already know that.

  
What has been your favorite part of being an author?  The least favorite?
I pretty much love everything about it…but I suppose if I had to choose, my favorite thing would be getting to know and be a part of this amazing lesfic community. Least favorite…hummm…well I guess that would have to be marketing.

 
What other authors do you follow?  Which books would you recommend?
I’m a HUGE Radclyffe fan…although I must admit I like her older works better. My favorite of all her books is “Passion’s Bright Fury.” Next in line would be “Love’s Melody Lost.”  

 
What is in the works next for you? 
My work in progress is titled “To Believe In Magic.” Jack and Courtney from “Change of Heart” will be strong secondary characters in the work. If all goes well, it should release mid-summer.

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Here’s an excerpt from ‘Change of Heart’…

Jack opened the passenger door for Courtney and she climbed in. Then Jack walked around the vehicle to climb in the other side. She sighed as she looked over her shoulder to back out of the narrow driveway. “When are you gonna tell me, Courtie?” she asked. 

Courtney began to cry. 

“I can see it’s tearing you up inside,” Jack continued. “I think you’d feel better if you told me.”

Courtney cried a little harder. 

“Whatever it is,” Jack said softly, “it happened a longtime ago and we’ve moved on.” She shifted gears. “Why can’t you just tell me?” 

Courtney hiccupped a sob. 

“Okay, I’ll leave you be,” Jack said. “I guess you’ll tell me when you’re ready.” 

Check out this link to my review:  ‘Change of Heart’.

Thank you all for joining us today.  Before you go, be sure to check out KA Moll’s links below: 

Purchase ‘Change of Heart’ 

Website: www.kamoll.com

FB: https://www.facebook.com/kamollwrites/    

Twitter: @ka_moll

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLyxllnvI0k 

Lesbian Talk Show Interview on writing damaged characters: 

http://www.thelesbiantalkshow.com/how-to-write-damaged-characters/

  

Until next time, 

Lynn 

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Copyright 2017

My Review of Breanna Hughes’ ‘A Fine Mess’

A Fine Mess, explores the lives of three women, Harper, Emily, and Kiley, who have an awakening due to a tragedy.

Harper learned her motto from her folks, never to complain about her life.   Growing up, she followed their direction and hid behind a façade. Her feelings are stuck, due to years of restricting herself emotionally. Her desire to alienate herself has created more drama between certain players. Her loved ones don’t understand this, but I do and realize this was part of her journey of life. She is family oriented and shows her love and loyalty many times.

Harper is independent and a creative, talented guitar musician. Despite parental pressure to do otherwise, she goes ahead and does her own thing. The author paints a precise picture of her and I could feel her passion for music. I could imagine her playing on stage in front of standing room crowd.

Emily is Harper’s younger sister and is a bit on the rebellious side. Underneath, she has a tender heart. Emily isn’t afraid to speak her truth. She tends to do things without thinking of the long term effects. This has caused tension with Harper. I really like Emily. She has integrity and I can see the love she has inside of her. She is a true leader and I know she’s going to do well in life. She’s liked by everyone and is her own person. I found the way she held her own ground was admirable.

Kiley is Harper’s best friend who has been always there for her. Underneath her coat of armor, is a talented and beautiful artist, just spreading her wings. She is also an excellent marketing rep for Harper. Her strength is loyalty. She would do anything for both sisters. It took me some time to warm up to her, and you’ll see what I mean as you read along.

Life throws the sisters a curveball that changes the direction of their lives. Each choose a different path. And even though there are trials, never did they lose sight. Both women realized they needed to change in the midst of it all. The energy of these scenes got intense and I felt devastated.

There is an eternal battle between hearts, creating very intense drama.  Raw feelings emerged from the pages.  I can’t tell you more without spilling the beans.

There is enough heat in the book to steam up a mirror. The scenes are full of romance and tastefully described.

There are many points of view in the story. There were two that, although were well expressed, slowed the flow of the story. On the other hand, I enjoyed reading inside the minds of the three women. This was so well written that I felt like I knew them.

This story has a lot going on and kept my eyes glued to the pages. I just love the title, too. The author added narration that touched me, creating more depth to the story, and held my attention. As a SoCal resident, I was tickled pink that it takes place right here. She points out many popular places in LA, some of which I have yet to visit. This story can be read in an afternoon, so you’re going to want to carve out time. Enjoy.

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Here is an excerpt:

Standing in the near-empty parking lot in front of Tyson’s Bar, Harper tried her best to not let nerves get the best of her, but was failing miserably. She gripped her black guitar case in one hand, while she removed her other gig bag from her shoulder and grasped the handle with her other hand. She didn’t know why she was this nervous. It’s not like it was the first time she’d been here. Tonight, however, was different. Tonight, she’d be putting her guitar to use. It never failed. Before any performance, there was always a wave of anxiety that washed over Harper. It usually subsided once she took the stage, but the moments leading up to it were the worst. Harper tried to shake off any fears she had creeping deep into her psyche and walked in, hoping that a drink would do the trick.

Her eyes shifted focus between the stage and the bar. She looked around for a familiar face–her parents, her boyfriend–but they weren’t there yet. It was still fairly early and there were only about a dozen people there at the moment, so she traipsed over to the bar, figuring a drink should take precedence over setting up for her debut at this particular venue.

She maneuvered her way through the tables and chairs, stopping suddenly when she took notice of the girl behind the bar looking rather apathetic as she arbitrarily arranged some cocktail napkins and then wiped down the bar. She didn’t think too much of Kiley when she first saw her, but when she finally spoke, it was enough to make a lasting impression.

Four Stars

 

Until next time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2017

My Review for Samantha Jacobey’s ‘Christmas Eve’

 

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‘Christmas Eve’ is the sequel to ‘Christmas Candy.’ It is a new chapter in Candy Parker’s life. She is back with a brand new attitude. She and her family are living in the home of the fireman, Gary, who had rescued her mom, Lanelle, and young son, Dakota, from the fire that destroyed her home the year before.

They are getting married and Candy is scared. She fears that she won’t be able to offer him the life she believes he deserves. Their relationship is very evolved and the love for both people is deep. This guy is amazing in all aspects. Yet she is fixated on one thing about him.

Candy grew up in a single parent household and found that she needed to put forth a lot of effort and faith to get the things she wanted out of life. Nothing was handed to her. Her fear of having money is great, yet she wants to move forward with her life. I really felt she was ready to change.

Candy loves her family more than anything and is always there for them. Her son is the joy of her life and the author clearly shows it. There were a few touching mother-son scenes that may cause your eyes to tear. Mine did.

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“Her heart beating wildly inside her chest, Candy squeezed his hand. It’s ok, she steadied herself. They had rehearsed for this moment a few days before, but standing there, before his family, she found each breath a struggle. Her lips curled into a large grin, she waited as his fingers smoothed a few hairs out of her face.”

 

Samantha Jacobey – Christmas Eve

Candy also has to deal with Gary’s family as she is not comfortable with their ample lifestyle. She puts on a smile, her insides are shaking. Gary’s mother, Evelyn, is very controlling and not very accepting. He loves his mother, yet is now put in between the two women in his life. I found Evelyn to be annoying and at times I wanted to set her straight. This character was well thought out and the story shows it.

At the same time a secret from the past emerges, putting Candy in a difficult situation.   She is forced to deal with this at this time. Her frustration and fear were clearly felt, bringing empathy out in me.  One supporting character made me angry. This made the story even better and you’re going to have to read the book to find out more.

Candy has dreams, like all of us. What she wants more than anything is a loving home.   Deep inside, she is a strong woman. All she has to do is allow herself to grow.  The question is will love prevail.

The pace of the story is fast and can be read in an afternoon. The author included very clear descriptions and many times I felt like I was in the scene with the characters. The author also added a nice touch by naming all of the chapters.

I am waiting for the next chapter of Candy. If you like, you can read ‘Christmas Candy’ first. Here is an excerpt from this fine story:

Candy stared at the dress hanging on the back of her door. A creamy winter white made entirely of lace, it hung just below her knees when she had tried it on, and she knew that it was the one. Her veil a simple mesh that covered her face and topped her head with cream colored roses, she couldn’t wait to wear them.

As a girl, she had stopped dreaming of such things about the time her father died. She felt as if she had lived in a dark tunnel since that night, always running, trying to escape, but there had been no light at the end. Not until Gary came into her life, and even then she couldn’t see his light for so long; hadn’t wanted to see it.

Her fingers lightly caressing the lace skirt, she smiled. “We’re going to have a beautiful life,” she breathed. “Dreams really do come true.” Dropping the fabric, she packed her backpack and headed down stairs. She wanted to get to the school early and be ready for her last exam of the year.

christmas-eve

I am recommending this story for everyone who loves the end of the year holidays with some romantic drama.

 

Five Stars.

Until next time,

Lynn

 

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Rainy Day in SoCal

It was raining cats and dogs last Sunday afternoon. SoCal has been in a drought for nearly four years and we’re finally getting dumped on this year. We were itching to get out so we went to visit a friend, who lives forty miles away.

Our friend needed to run an errand so we all got into the Jeep and went for a drive in the rain. We noticed flooding all over the place, including cars parked on the main road halfway underwater. Each detour road was blocked. I have only seen scenes like this in pictures.

On the way back to her place, we took the freeway, which was fine for about a mile then traffic came to a standstill. Desperate people drove up the embankment to exit the jammed road. I have never seen anything like this in my life and I grew up in the Midwest where it rains a lot.

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This was so bizarre. Never did I think I would be caught in a flash flood with rain pelting my Jeep. As we sit there patiently, it was really tempting for us to put the Jeep into four wheel drive and drive up the embankment with the others. I’m glad we didn’t because the risk isn’t worth it.

At the same time, I can’t complain. I was with two great people, my wife and our trusted friend. We took the situation lightly by staying positive and not panicking. We enjoyed a few laughs and talked about the King of Queens episode where Kevin James and Ray Romano went golfing in weather just like this.

As I was sitting in the backseat, I allowed myself to feel gratitude. I have wanted it to rain for so long and now we have an abundance. It feels good knowing that all of the greenery is being watered. I thank Creator for providing rain for us.

We have a special tree in our backyard that is really benefiting from the extra rain. It is a Norwegian pine tree that my wife has had since it was a baby. It has been to various places, but now it’s permanent home in the backyard and is flourishing. Our other plants are now established, so this will help them grow more.  I enjoy rainy days. I get to go out to my covered patio with a cup of coffee and sit there and watch the droplets fall.   It is so peaceful to hear it’s soothing sounds. And the smell of fresh light rain, that’s the best. When I was younger I used to think that I was going to melt if I get went out in the rain. Now it just pelts on me and rolls right off my back.

We continued to sit in the standstill. We witnessed a couple of cars driving backwards and a lot of cars driving on the shoulder of the road. It felt like we were in the middle of an a evacuation. In the below picture, a truck drove over the median to illegally exit the freeway.  I’m so glad no one was honking either. It is so aggravating to have to put up with angry blasts, most which are not for an emergency.

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In church on Sunday they spoke about taking rests. I believe that our adventure on the I-710 was a big one for us. Sometimes the Universe or God creates them to force us to be with ourselves. This was a trial for all three of us. Although we know each other well, we had to be observant of everyone’s emotions. I kept reciting the prayer that we say each week, “God is the love that I am.” This really helped because previously this experience would have been frustrating. That day, I sensed no danger and was in the moment the entire time.

Over two hours had elapsed and we were still inching along, the rain never let up. They closed off the road at the next exit and we had to get off. It was a madhouse. Once again some people were driving aggressively. As we were exiting, we looked over and saw that up ahead the freeway was flooded. Fire trucks were everywhere.

Finally we made it off the freeway and took our friend home. Thankfully, we encountered no problems on the way home. It felt so good to pull into our driveway.

Until next time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2017

 

 

 

 

 

Vegan Chili on a Cold Winter Day

Good afternoon, friends. It is so great to see all of your smiling faces today. Now is that time of year where the weather is cold and rainy, or snowing. It is perfect to try my homemade vegan chili and you are going to love this one. This recipe is a family favorite that I’m passing on to you.

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Here are the ingredients:

Beans

1 cup     dry navy beans

1 cup     dry kidney beans

1 cup     dry pinto beans

1/2 cup dry garbanzo beans

 

Veggies

10 medium sized roma tomatoes (or your choice of tomato about 48 oz)

2   peppers (any color)

1   large white onion

1   large Jalapeno (add more for more kick)

4   large cloves of garlic

 

Spices

4 tablespoons oregano

1 table spoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon sea salt

1 tablespoon ground pepper

 

Last ingredients

1  fresh ear of corn (cut kernels off cobb)

16 ounces ground vegan crumble

 

I prefer to use raw ingredients as opposed to those in a can. The first thing I do is gather them, with the first being the beans. Put all the beans in a crockpot and cover with water and soak overnight.

Rinse thoroughly the next morning and put back into crockpot. Put in enough water to cover the beans and cook on low. I like to use my slow cooker because it doesn’t overcook the ingredients.

 

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If you have a food processor, this is the fun part – Dicing. Use the dicing blade that came with yours. Cut all of your veggies into a few pieces and make sure the centers of the peppers are free of seeds, that is unless you want a more heated finished dish. Put veggies into food processor.   I love watching the machine dice up the tomatoes and onion. No crying on my part. I’ve had my fare share of slicing mass amounts of onions and those days are over. So are cutting up veggies by hand.Mix in the veggies with the beans. Then add the spices (add more to taste if you’d like) and continue to cook on low for about 8 hours. It is best to come in and stir it occasionally, but you don’t need to.

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The time is now yours. Good time to curl up with a good book. I just finished two great reads: Breanna Hughes’ A Fine Mess and Samantha Jacobey’s Christmas Eve. Breanna’s book is a dynamic romance story and Samantha’s is the sequel to Christmas Candy. My review for Christmas Candy can be found in the blog archives here and on blogspot.com. I am looking for discussions for both books. If you’ve read them, share what you liked about them and we’ll go from there. Stay tuned for my upcoming reviews.

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The last ingredients to add are the corn and the veggie ground. Remove the kernels from the cob and add to the chili. Stir in the veggie ground crumble and let it cook for an additional hour. The beans should be soft, but not squishy. You can cook for additional time if you’d like tender beans.

Chili is done and time for you to enjoy. Invite your friends over for this treat. Feel free to share your favorite recipes with us. Also I’d love to hear your chili story.

 

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Seasonally yours,

Lynn

 

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Photos provided by CharliWhiskey

Copyright 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Review for Linda Bates’, ‘It Drew Pale’

Good Afternoon Everyone!  I hope you all had a lovely holiday, for those who chose to join in.  Today  am featuring my review for Linda Bates’ ‘It Drew Pale.’  This book recently debuted, just in time for this holiday season.  Come on in and join us for this fun journey.

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Her greatest asset was her determination, and if you wanted to succeed in something in Oregon, or anywhere in the world for that matter, you had to have plenty of spirit!

Linda Bates

 

It Drew Pale takes place in the 19th century in the rural west. A man named Jack Preston was moving to Oregon to start a new life. Jack is tough but even keeled. He is witty, has a nice sense of humor, and is respectful of others. Jack is as honest as he can be. However, he has a big secret that your going to need to read the book to find out.

Eleanor and Marianne are sisters who enter Jack’s life. They are daughters of a shop keeper and they dress very well. Their beauty radiates and they are both very nurturing.   it’s no wonder that their family business is doing so well. These two women reminded me to stay optimistic. You can’t help but feel good when you are around them. They are both attracted to Jack’s charm. It’s no wonder that Jack is attracted to them. The question is how are they going to feel once they learn Jack’s secret.

All three players are solid. They are brave in their own ways. Marianne, under pressure, never showed any weak characteristics.   Nor did she cry out for a man when she was in an unpleasant situation. Marianne’s heart is as big as the world. Her strength is very visible and I applaud the author for creating her.

Eleanor doesn’t put up with nonsense. She knows how to hold her own ground and get her point across clearly. She isn’t afraid to use force either. She knows what she wants. No isn’t an option for her. If she wasn’t so attached to her family, I could see her going out on her own and starting a life someplace else. I found her to be a bit standoffish, but after learning a few things, I understood.

Jack has inner strength that is comparable to a super human. Jack isn’t afraid and doesn’t allow physical pain to slow him, especially when fighting for justice. Emotions are well tamed and never take over any situation.   I could see Jack stealth his way across a battlefield unnoticed.

This story is quite an adventure. There is a little bit of violence that made me pause from reading for a moment. The read itself kept me at a slow pace and I had to backtrack a few times so I wouldn’t miss anything. The story hooked me and I enjoyed the ride. You are going to want to carve out time so that you can fully experience the entire story without interruptions. And don’t forget to read the introduction before the story. I found it to be very inspiring.

Here are two excerpts from this fine story for you to check out.  Enjoy!

Excerpt 1

Stepping onto Oregon soil, Jack immediately began to feel the familiarity of it all. It had been eight months since the tired legs had set foot on some good old honest earth. It felt wholesome and fresh. And firm, too, after the bobbling about on the schooner. People were still around to trip over in the busy port-side, yet already Jack felt free. It was certainly a welcome contrast from the life Jack had led back at the claim. There were some real women milling about! Jack was not the type who discriminated against those women who wore trousers and flannel open-necked shirts. After all, in the gold fields it was more practical for a female’s needs, but in Jack’s mind, there was no female figure that was not the embodiment of nature in crinoline and frills! It was the way of it, and Jack had no mind to change the laws of nature. The others, Jack observed, were also viewing the magnificent local scenery.

Excerpt 2 

The busy storekeeper and her sister heard the slam of a door, but were too busy to attend their aggrieved relative. Besides, they had experienced the tantrums of the twenty-year old, and were quite used, after years of the same, to Eleanor’s behaviour. Her father always had the same answer when Eleanor was ‘in a sweat’ as he would call it, and deduced she would desist being out of sorts as soon as she found herself a strong man to calm her temper. And that would anger Eleanor the more her father would vocalise his philosophies. They would never see eye-to-eye on the ideals that matched the general populace, because Eleanor did not see herself as one of the crowd. Rather she was an individual, with needs of her own she had not quite worked out yet.

 

Four Stars!

Until Next Time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2016

 

My Review for Samantha Jacobey’s ‘Christmas Candy’

Good afternoon friends. Welcome to the Christmas blog blast for Samantha Jacobey’s ‘Christmas Candy.’ I am very excited to share my review so come on in and join in with the fun.  Enjoy!

 

Christmas is nearing and our main character, Candy is doing her best with her challenged young son.   Motherhood is natural for her and her sincerity is clearly shown.  She goes out of her way for him and puts him first.

Candy knows what she wants and isn’t afraid to go after it, and get her way.  She is a little spicy, and a real character.  Her strong traits came out several times during the story.  I found it refreshing to see her speak her mind and stand her ground.  She takes care of herself.

On the sidelines stands her love interest.  However she won’t allow herself to pursue him because of a deep seated grief from a loss in her past.  Trust issues come up, creating fear in her.  She wants to break free, but at the same time is keeping herself prisoner.  But for how long?

Life throws her a curveball during the midst and she is forced to surrender some of her self-sufficiency and allow others to help. By humbling herself she is able to process her feelings.  While reading this fiery, committed, chase, you’ll be dying to know what happens next.  Very well done!

This read makes a great stocking stuffer and can be finished in about two hours. The pace is fast so I found myself backtracking a few times just so I wouldn’t miss out on anything important.  The story is easy to follow.  Each scene is described in such a way that I felt part of it.  I am recommending this book for you all!

Scroll down to read more about ‘Christmas Candy’.   I have included an audio and a text excerpt.

 

Here is excerpt #1.  It is an audio file from ‘Christmas Candy’.

Take a listen to the audio file

Here is excerpt #2 from ‘Christmas Candy’.

Swinging around to face her, he towered above her short frame. Catching her hair, he tugged on it playfully while bending his face down close to hers. “Do you have any idea what you do to me?” he blurted, his smile tantalizing. 

Staring at him in wide-eyed surprise, she demanded, “I thought you were going to stop pushing me to date you!” 

“I’m not pushing, and this isn’t a date,” his lips made contact, but only for a brief moment. Stepping back, he caught her hand and pushed the button to call for the elevator at the same time. 

Holding him nervously, Candice followed him into the cubicle, and waited for the doors to close. Once they were alone in the small space, she pulled at his arm and teased, “You make it really hard to trust you.” 

“Only keeping you on your toes,” he shot back while staring up at the ceiling.

“Is that a short joke?” 

“Maybe,” the doors parted and they exited together.

Five Stars.

Until Next Time,

Lynn

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Copyright 2016