Friday, April 24, 2015

Working Hard


That's my Dad! He's been working hard in rehab since his stroke in October. Today is the last day of rehab for him--according to Medicare. His physical therapist has been wonderful and he wants to hand her a bouquet today. :-)

He's made considerable progress for someone who is ninety-three. Kudos to Dad. But don't stop exercising.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Two Months From Today


In two more months, PATRIOT'S PRIDE will be released. It's the sequel to PATRIOT'S HEART, and from the moment the idea for Agnes's story came to me, I knew I had to tell Margaret's story as well.

Agnes and Margaret are sisters. Agnes took over her father's blacksmith shop, but Margaret is a baker of local renown in the little town where she grew up. Though there are six years between them, they are close. I know not all sisters find a best friend in their sibling, but it can happen. Though there may be squabbles and arguments, some sisters grow up to appreciate each other.

Agnes's story is set in 1778, right after the Battle of Monmouth. Margaret's story takes place immediately following the war when she sets off for England in a sailing ship much like the one pictured above.

I went to England once, but I flew over three thousand miles of ocean--it was a lot quicker. It's difficult to imagine the hardships travelers endured on a long voyage in the old days on a sailing ship.  When hubby and I went on a cruise to the Bahamas, we enjoyed six meals a day. The food was fantastic, but back in the late 1700s there was no refrigeration. Travelers had no vegetables. Meat and fish were preserved in brine. (Very salty!) There were grains--like oats. It doesn't sound like a varied and interesting menu.

If you haven't read PATRIOT'S HEART, now would be a good time to start. Then you'll be ready to read PATRIOT'S PRIDE when it's released. You can journey across the ocean with Margaret to England without leaving you house and you'll be able to eat vegetables and other delicacies requiring refrigeration. It's a great way to travel. :-)


Buy it now at

Friday, April 17, 2015

Unanswered


Since I write romances, I enjoy listening to other couples' love stories--how they met and how they fell in love. Most people are more than willing to divulge the details concerning their courtship.

But I do not know how my paternal grandparents met and fell in love. My grandfather is on the right in the photo above and my grandmother is happily putting a new coat on me. This picture was taken at Christmas in 1955.

I know my grandmother's parents owned a chicken farm in Pennington, New Jersey. My grandfather was a milkman in Jersey City. My grandmother was a Presbyterian and my grandfather was Catholic. They were married in the vestibule of the Catholic church, because in those days non-Catholics weren't allowed to marry at the altar. (Fortunately, that rule changed.)

My grandmother died about eight years after this picture was taken. I was thirteen then. I never got to talk to her much at all.

My grandfather died about sixteen years after my grandmother. While I had the opportunity to talk to him quite a bit, I never asked him how he and his sweetheart met. Why didn't I think of it? Why didn't someone else think of it?

Now we'll never know. :-(


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Sticker Fun with Facebook Messenger


Sometimes, I'm a bit slow to catch onto new things. I like Facebook's messenger app. I've been using it since it came out. It is a handy tool for contacting people with private messages. However, I knew nothing about the amazing array of stickers available to add to my personal notes.

Daughter #1 gave me a lesson on Saturday when I asked. I am now fairly fluent in stickers. Using them adds another dimension to my short missives. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. So why not use a cute little picture? There's quite a variety for every occasion. They are fun!

Do you see the plus sign (+) on the right in the image above? When you are in the Messenger app, click on that and it will bring you to the Sticker Store, where even more stickers are available for you to download for FREE.


You can add Snoopy dancing to your note or add a little picture of Hello Kitty watering a tulip. Try out the stickers. Make your messages memorable. 

Friday, April 10, 2015

The Best Tuna Mac Casserole


Daughter #2 is visiting with us this week. Yesterday, I asked what she would like for supper and, as usual, she asked for my Tuna Mac Casserole. When it comes to decadent, calorie-laden dishes, this one tops the list. I developed the recipe over the years to suit my taste buds. Obviously, it suits hers, too. :-)

Cook one box of of whole wheat pasta. (Daughter #2 likes rotini, but shells are good, too.) Drain the pasta.

Spray a 13x9 baking dish with PAM.

Put the drained pasta into the baking dish. Add 2 cans of drained, solid white albacore tuna (packed in water). Mix pasta and tuna together.

Then make this SAUCE:

1/2 cup of butter (8 tablespoons)
8 tablespoons of flour
1tablespoon of turmeric (this makes the casserole very, very yellow)
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup of extra sharp cheddar, grated
4 cups of milk

Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the flour and stir until smooth. Add the turmeric, onion powder, and salt. Stir. Add the milk and stir over medium heat until it thickens. (A spatula is good for this job.) Add the grated cheddar cheese. Stir until it's melted.

Pour the sauce over the pasta and tuna in the baking pan. Stir until everything is mixed evenly.

Next take two tablespoons of butter and work it into a cup of bread crumbs. Sprinkle this over the rest of the ingredients in the pan.

Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes until the sauce is bubbling.

Scrumptious!


Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Third Time's the Charm


My mother always told me the third time is the charm. I'm hoping she was right because for the third time KISS OF BLARNEY is available in a digital edition. I reissued it myself last night. :-) It was published first by New Concepts Publishing. When that publisher returned the rights to me, Crescent Moon Press published it. But now it's mine again and I am offering it to the world at the bargain price of $0.99.

I uploaded it to Smashwords, too, which will make it available for iBooks, Nook, Kobo, and several other ebook distributors. For Smashwords I had to compose a very short blurb:

An Irish princess, raised in secrecy, and destined to rule the Enchanted Island must save her companion from an evil Druid. She enlists the aid of a dog, but the owner of the animal is not about to let her steal his dog--even if by doing so he puts his own life in peril.

The new long blurb is this:

Prophecy says Ula, an Irish princess, is destined to rule the Enchanted Island with a black-eyed prince. For safety, she hides in the Pine Barrens of New Jersey with a druidess for a companion. Ula knows nothing of the modern world. She has no friends and never saw a man. When her druidess is kidnapped by the evil Balor, she leaves her hidden cottage to borrow a dog who can aid her in finding her companion. 

Shay is a descendent of Irish kings given specific rules to follow since birth. If he breaks his sacred code misfortune or even death could result. He doesn’t think those principles make sense in the modern world. Then he meets Ula. She walks into a pub during a blizzard and causes a melee. He wants nothing to do with her, especially when he realizes she's out to steal his dog but if he turns her out into the snow, he’ll break his sacred code. Though Ula spouts nonsense, she tempts him to abandon every principle his father gave him. 

Ula’s love for Shay is forbidden, for he has blue eyes, but the powerful emotions that draw her to him cannot be denied. Still, she is bound to rescue her druidess and for that she must take Shay’s dog, even if Shay breaks her heart and winds up hating her forever.


Warning: This book does have one very sensual scene.

A book video is available on YouTube, too. Have a look!





Go to the Amazon link for the book
HERE!

Friday, April 03, 2015

Leftover Peeps

My northern sister, who is much more of a comedian than I am, came up with several recipe ideas for leftover Peeps. She took these photos and labeled them. :-)

Peeps S'more before microwaving



Peeps S'more after microwaving, also known as a Peeps No more.



Hot Peeps Cocoa



Enjoy your Peeps!