Mr. Mischief: Four-Year Olds Who Shave

Happy Saturday, Ladies! I had a real fun post to share today, until about two hours ago. Fate has decided I reroute my blog, though, because I’ve discovered I’m married to a four-year old who shaves.

Come to think of it, I’m pretty inept in the behavior department myself. Women get naughty too, but that’s not the problem.

We all think we’re in a relationship with splendid, handsome, and infallible partners, and maybe we ARE. My man’s usually above reproach, but not when it comes to sneaking snack food he’s not supposed to eat.

Do you have a partner like mine?

Anyway, Joe had a gastric bypass about twenty years ago, and his diet needs to be restricted accordingly. He’s pretty good about managing it, but today he was naughty, a Mr. Mischief, if you will. He ate a large bag of popcorn on the way home from the store, followed by a Klondike bar, before he even got in the door, during a ten minute ride.

He’s been sick all night, and so have I (emotionally), because who wants to see their bestest friend in the universe suffering? There’s been some terrible side effects from his indulgence, but hopefully, they will dissipate soon and hence, a happily ever after nighty… Which brings me to Happy Tidings and Bunches of Love.

We, at the Author’s Billboard, wish to bring you the very best of our happily ever after endings, via our stories. We write about our husbands, our lovers, and imaginary characters our subscribers and fans can relate to, and hopefully will adore reading about. Some of our ideas are born from life experiences, other via a humorous, lovely, or just plain devious muse – my ladies here can relate to what I’m saying, right?

That being said, please allow me to share a few of my favorite box sets our muses have created, and there are SO many to choose from. These wonderful collections are ALL #Free on #KU or just 99 cents!

UNFORGETTABLE HEROES-UNFORGETTABLE PASSION: Get that Friday Feeling With Our Hunky Heroes – They don’t come along very often, but when they do, they can turn YOUR world upside down~ Unforgettable Heroes – Unforgettable Passion~ Strong, protective guys women yearn to meet. http://amzn.to/2ug5u0r

SWEET AND SASSY CHRISTMAS – A TIME FOR ROMANCE – Some are Sweet and some are Sassy. Eleven holiday romances to captivate and seduce. NYT & USA Today bestselling authors have joined together to bring you tales from early America, abandoned puppies, military heroes, doctors and more. Get a warm drink, find a comfy seat, and enjoy an armchair cruise into the world of Christmas lovers and their unique stories. http://bookShow.me/B076GBDV98

SWEET HEAT – WHERE SUSPENSE AND ROMANCE MEET ~ Forget the Housework This Weekend and Get YOUR Thrill on~ Presenting SWEET HEAT: WHERE ROMANCE & SUSPENSE MEET~ Six Tales to Satisfy Every Reader! Romance, Mystery, Suspense! #KU/99c http://bookShow.me/B074XKZ95J

UNFORGETTABLE CHRISTMAS – GIFTS OF LOVE This festive #Bestselling Collection will bring the joy of Christmas straight to your heart, all year long. #KU/99c Grab your favorite Kindle e-reader & cozy up with these nine amazingly romantic tales that are guaranteed to be…UNFORGETTABLE. http://amzn.to/2xori7W 

How About a Taste of Love? This is where it really hits home for me tonight – Presenting SWEET AND SASSY VALENTINE: Authors choose to write romance because they understand that Love is the greatest force on earth. We write, not fantasy, but the reality that love can be found when one least expects it. Just ask any senior citizen who is in love what it feels like. She or he will tell you that it feels the same way at eighty as it felt at eighteen. http://amzn.to/2DQm8pW

Anyhow, thanks for checking in, I do appreciate the time you spent reading my post. If you’d like to know more about my shenanigans, or review my personal catalogue, please check out my Amazon Author page: http://amzn.to/1PxE4ab

Chat me up anytime, I do love to hear from you! For now, though, I must go check on Mr. Mischief….

 

Susan Jean Ricci

A late bloomer to the writing life, Susan Jean Ricci’s been mighty busy the past six years. The award-winning, internationally read, From Women’s Pens author and humorist, Susan’s best known for her series of works titled Cindy’s Crusades that includes two novels, Dinosaurs and Cherry Stems and The Sugar Ticket, the short chronicle Twilight and Chickadees, and a collection of short stories titled Heart Marks the Spot.

Susan’s novel Dinosaurs and Cherry Stems is a Multi Award winner. Its Sequel The Sugar Ticket placed first for Outstanding Women’s Fiction category in the IAN 2016. The sassy My Sexy Chef won a second place award in the novella category via the Global Ebook Awards 2016, and has inspired the hot sequel Chaos in the Kitchen.

Susan also specializes in short stories and novellas. Included are Christmas shorts, but she favors the romantic or humorous side of the equation, and that’s what you’ll find about her writing the most.

School Violence – Protect our children

School violence

Whether you’re a Republican, a Democrat,  simply an American–or a Canadian like me, we must all be suffering for the tragedies our children face each and every day. The fear that life does not go on, there is no safe place in the world, that when they wake up in the morning they may never come home.  I hope each and every child and school across the nation stand as one and declare that it’s time for a change.

I know that a blog is not the place for a political statement, and I’m not making one. I just want to see a better world, a safer one for us, for our future generations.

Do I have a solution? No, of course not, but please, stricter regulations is only common sense. I’m a romance writer, a peaceful person who believes or wants to believe in happily ever afters and that good will triumph over evil.

If you agree, like this blog and tweet. I’m a mother, a grand-mother, a woman who wants violence to end. That’s all.

 

Patrice Wilton

Patrice Wilton knew from the age of twelve that she wanted to write books that would take the reader to faraway places. She was born in Vancouver, Canada, and had a great need to see the world that she had read about.

Patrice became a flight attendant for seventeen years and traveled the world. At the age of forty she sat down to write her first book—in longhand! Her interests include tennis, golf, and writing stories for women of all ages.

She is a mother of two, has four lovely grand-daughters, and a wonderful man at her side. They live in West Palm Beach, Florida, where he teaches her golf, and she teaches him patience.

Her best selling books are the CANDY BAR series, SERENDIPITY FALLS series, and most recently PARADISE COVE and A CHRISTMAS COLLECTION series. She is a New York Times best selling author.

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We all get old in the end – redux

WE ALL GET OLD IN THE END – IF WE’RE LUCKY!
I spent all day dealing with computer issues (and found out what a broken dongle is), so I’m taking the easy way out on my blog and sharing this funny email my brother forwarded to me. I looked for the name of its author, but couldn’t find where anyone claimed credit. Wish it had been me (although I’d call the gunshot sounds backfire noises).
Disclaimer: I’m only 65, so it was 50 years ago, not 60, when I was a teenager.

I changed my car horn to gunshot sounds. People get out of the way
much faster now.

Gone are the days when girls used to cook like their mothers. Now they
drink like their fathers.

You know that tingly little feeling you get when you really like
someone? That’s common sense leaving your body.

I didn’t make it to the gym today. That makes five years in a row.

I decided to stop calling the bathroom the “John” and renamed it the
“Jim”. I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.

Old age is coming at a really bad time. When I was a child I thought
“Nap Time” was a punishment Now, as a grownup, it feels like a small
vacation.

The biggest lie I tell myself is…”I don’t need to write that down,
I’ll remember it.”

I don’t have gray hair; I have “wisdom highlights!” I’m just very wise.

If God wanted me to touch my toes, He would’ve put them on my knees.

Last year I joined a support group for procrastinators. We haven’t met yet.

Why do I have to press one for English when you’re just going to
transfer me to someone I can’t understand anyway?

Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice.

At my age “Getting lucky” means walking into a room and remembering
what I came in there for.

Actually I’m not complaining because I am a Senager (Senior teenager)
I have everything that I wanted as a teenager, only 60 years later. I
don’t have to go to school or work. I get an allowance every month. I
have my own pad. I don’t have a curfew. I have a driver’s license and
my own car. The people I hang around with are not scared of getting
pregnant. And I don’t have acne.

Life is great.

I have more friends I should send this to, but right now I can’t
remember their names.

Now, I’m wondering…did I send this to you, or did you send it to me?

Now, don’t forget to add Sweet and Sassy Valentine to your Kindle Unlimited collection (free) or splurge 99 cents to buy this marvelous box set of TWELVE romances for only 99 cents! 

Dani Haviland

Dani Haviland, formerly of Connecticut, Arizona, and Alaska, recently semi-retired from selling tractor parts, tools, and roses. She moved to a more temperate climate in western Oregon to pursue her passions: writing, gardening, and photography.
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Lessons Learned from Hawaii

Lessons Learned from Hawaii
So someone hits the wrong button in Hawaii, and everyone panics because they think they will die that day. Afterwards, I thought about all the “bomb drills” we used to do when I was a child. “Duck and cover.” Not much use in a nuclear situation. But, a nuclear attack does not mean instant death. With just a few minutes warning, you can greatly increase your chance of survival.

As you go through your day, play the “What if?” game a few times. Preparation is mainly a matter of thinking ahead. What if I were downtown? At a playground? In Hawaii? At home? At the office? At school? Do a family plan. What to do, and where to meet later on. Cell phones won’t work for a while, so you need to plan, especially if you have children. They should have a first, second, and third place to meet, so if one of the places is demolished, they can go to the next.

First of all, a nuclear blast has several dangers. Think volcano. For those of us on the Pacific Rim, we know about volcanoes. You have the danger from the blast, then the heat and wind, and finally the ash. With a nuclear attack, the point of impact would go down into the ground, so if you’re above or below ground, it won’t matter. But, even if you are close, you might survive if you are in a building, especially underground, since dirt is the best protection made. Think foxhole. So look for a spot underground, if you can.

Basements are better than ground floors, so if you’re visiting Hawaii, head for the underground shops, next the parking garages, although many of them have too big an opening, and the ash would blow in. Cars often have bottled drinking water in them. If in a high rise, get into the hallway or stairwell, some place with no windows. Second floor is best, first floor is worse (because of the ash). A subway or tunnel might provide a good shelter, if you are far enough away from the entrance. I would think a theater would make a great shelter for folks. Cars out in the open are death traps.

A child at school should go into the inner hallways, without windows or skylights, as the blast would break the glass. Get into a ball and cover the head and all skin. Shelter close to the wall.

At home, go into a basement bathroom if you have one, or any room without windows, or cover the windows. If you have no basement, go into the most inner room you have. You are thinking dirt and concrete, so you might find that your garage will be the best spot, unless the door blows off. Look around and plan ahead.

If a blast occurs, stay in place for at least a day, if possible. Don’t go out where the radioactive ash is falling. Let it fall and settle. Don’t go out if windy. Rain, good hard Seattle rain, will wash it away. I would think the firemen would use their hoses and wash off the streets. Ash washes off. Don’t breathe it in.

Be prepared. Have a kit ready in several places. One in your car, one in your home at least. The kit should have drinking water (which you might have to use to wash the ash off your skin), a transistor radio, flashlight and batteries, a whistle you can blow if trapped. The dogs will hear you. I would add a small hatchet. Maybe a First Aid kit and a knife. Matches. Any medicine that is vital, that you can’t do without. Baby formula. Coat, hat, gloves, scarf, maybe a mask, and a blanket you can use to keep off the ash. Expect help to come. If you shelter in a bathroom and have any warning at all, fill the tub or sink with water. You can drink it, or use it to wash off the ash. Remember, the back of a toilet bowl is a water reservoir with drinkable water.

There are many good survival sites on the web, with a list of all sorts of things you can pack in your “bug out bag.” Several also show how to survive a nuclear explosion.

My soldier hero in “A Christmas Snowstar” had a “bug out bag” he used to save the life of the heroine and her son. Like many mountain ranchers, he kept it well equipped, as he never knew when an emergency would call him out into the wilderness. In this case, he grabbed it as he took his snowmobile out to search the snow-covered Idaho mountains for his lost mare, and found my heroine and her son, along with his mare and new-born foal.

A Christmas Snowstar

Nancy Radke

Nancy Radke grew up on a wheat and cattle ranch in SE Washinton State. She attended a one-room country school through the eighth grade. She learned to ride bareback at age 3 (Really! It was a common practice.) and when she got off or fell off, she would pull her horse’s nose to the ground, get on behind its ears, and the horse would lift its head so she could scoot down onto its back. She spent most of her childhood exploring the Blue Mountain trails that bordered the ranchlands. She and a friend once took a trail that turned out to be a two day trip. They always rode with matches and pocket knives, so made camp and returned the next day. These long rides worried her parents, but provided plenty of time to make up stories. Her first novel was set in the Blues, and is entitled APPALOOSA BLUES. TURNAGAIN LOVE was the first one published. It rated a four star review from Affaire de Coeur. Scribes World said “Turnagain Love has some fascinating twists and turns, unexpected complications, and charming scenes.” It is light and humorous.
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Change–doesn’t have to be a four-letter word

Change is not literally a four-letter word but it often comes with curses and dragging feet. Change can bring feelings of uncertainty, fear and hesitation.

I am a Gemini and we are supposed to thrive on change but the reality is that I prefer a quiet corner. I must channel all of my drama into my stories because so long as I have my laptop, coffee, a place to sit in front of said laptop, I am pretty much happy to be a hermit. In order to avoid back problems and an ass the size of Texas, I walk five days a week, and my honey and I take Sundays off to be together and do something fun away from the computers. I love being outside, especially the beach–which is a fluid reminder of change. The waves are constant–reaching for shore and receding…and repeat. I understand in a logical way that in order to grow, there has to be movement.

The reason change is on my mind is because we might be moving. Maybe. The condo we rent has been sold–we think. Nobody is giving us information lol. The lease with the old owner is up March 1. We think we will be able to rent month to month (sending the rent check who knows where) until the smoke clears and the new owner decides if they want to have us sign a new 12 month lease, or maybe a six month lease, or maybe just have us rent month to month until they decide. 

Do you see why I am going a little crazy? This is all change out of my control…we could take the bull by the horns and just rent somewhere else but we are two blocks from the ocean and we have our Pippa, and lots of places don’t allow dogs, even one the size of a rabbit. I have written lists to create pros and cons of moving versus staying…to help with the stress of waiting. I have prepared the best I can with funds and paperwork and checking out properties in our area but I don’t want to waste time (I have multiple deadlines I’m working with)  in case everything falls into place and we stay where we are for another year.

What this means is this: If we have to move, we are getting a dishwasher and a private bathroom, and a place with room for an office 🙂 *om*

I am part of the Unforgettable Valentine boxed set and I’m writing a new By the Sea contemporary romance titled the Sand King. I am also co-writing a mystery with my bestie Patrice Wilton–all while doing my best to embrace CHANGE–what tricks do you have that you can share?

Traci

Unforgettable Valentine

www.tracihall.com –sign up for my newsletter and get a free copy of Sandy Kisses by the Sea

 

Traci Hall

With an impressive bibliography in an array of genres, USA Today bestselling author Traci Hall has garnered a notable fan base. She pens stories guaranteed to touch the heart while transporting the reader to another time and place. Her belief in happily ever after shines through, whether it’s a romantic glimpse into history or a love affair for today.

Confessions of a Panster Writer: Trusting the Muse

My brain is busy.

No joke. 🙂

I’ve tried plotting. I’ve tried outlining. It works for some, and doesn’t for others. I’m the latter.

I go into a book with a few ideas. Sometimes getting stuck holds me back, but even now, I’ve learned in the first draft to leave a note and just move on. Bare bones fast drafting is my method of choice. I’ve had holes in the story. Big gaping ones. I’ve had leads that didn’t go anywhere. Oh, my first draft can be a mess, like a tornado swept through. My poor beta reader, sometimes I put her through the wringer, trying to make sense of my mess. She’s a trooper, though.

I’ve been writing my whole life. I’ve been writing for publication going on six years. I’ve learned if the muse has a wacky, crazy WTF idea to at least run with it. This fickle, darling muse of mine has some wild places she takes me to, but for the most part, she’s led me to ideas I needed to follow. I’ve written stories about characters I didn’t know at first needed stories. (I’ve also written characters based on reader’s suggestions, but that’s another story altogether.)

This time around in the world of “Where’s my Muse taking me now?” is Vibrant, the 3rd book in my Winning Your Heart series. The series (At least the first three books) follows the lives of the Monroe twins, Lizette and Nola.

In the first two books, each twin gets her own story. It starts with a twin switch in So Unlike Me. That book was meant to be a short novel with romantic comedy elements.

The muse said, “Nope, we’re not having any of that. You’re going to add a mystery.”

This happened HALFWAY through the book! How am I supposed to wrap up this element now, muse? I can’t go over 45,000 words! (This was for a boxed set that the cap word count was 45,000!) I was also TRYING to write another stand alone.

Ha ha on me. Truth be told, I’m glad I gave Nola a story. She intrigues many as a secondary character in So Unlike Me, and I loved getting into her head in Forbidden Shelter. And the mystery element the muse decided I needed? It continued on in book 2.

So now, I’m giving the twins a much needed happily ever after. They’ve been through a lot on the last two years.

Oh, things were going great, for the most part. I had a few things I got stuck on, points I needed but didn’t quite have at the time.

And then, all of a sudden, out of the blue, the muse said,” This is what you need to do with the twins.”

Whoa. Just whoa. Stop for a second there. *Holds out hands and stares at the muse in awe.*

Are you serious?

The muse stares back at me. “Have I taken you down good roads before?”

She has a point.

So I followed this path, and oh, it hurt to do what I needed to do, but the signs were there in the previous books, how could I not follow that lead and not only give the girls their happily ever after, but help them discover more about themselves?

It’s a scary thought to give the reins to someone else to lead, and the same thought goes for following an idea in my head that wasn’t originally there before. But damn, the adventures are fun! I’ll have a giant mess to clean up before this book is all said and done, but the story potential and the feels are all there, ready and waiting to wrap up this segment of the Monroe twins’ saga.

Trust the muse. It’s something I’ve learned to do.

That’s today’s confession from this crazy panster writer who goes on a whim all the time.

Let’s rock February, shall we? Welcome to 2018!

-Nikki Lynn Barrett

 

Nikki Lynn Barrett

No matter where she goes, USA Today Bestselling author Nikki Lynn Barrett hears voices in her head. Instead of calling her crazy and locking her up, her family realizes it’s just a product of being an author and allows her to write the stories so that the voices shut up.
But they don’t. And probably never will. There’s no need to lock her up, Nikki knows she’ll never escape the voices, not until each and every last story is written. And for every story she writes, about ten or more ideas pop up.

When she isn’t slaving away at her computer writing books that will probably make you cry and keep you in suspense, Nikki plots to take over the world one book at a time. What? It’s a sickness. One she can’t escape!

Books aren’t her only addiction, though. Nikki can be found making up parodies to drive her son crazy, and bantering back and forth with her husband, who somehow manages to steal her away from the fictional world she lives in all the time.

Nikki lives in Arizona with her husband and son, where she can be found using every creativity outlet she can find through music, photography, handcrafted things, and random interests that she may pick up from time to time.

If you want to learn more about the author who makes people cry for a living, check her out at www.nikkilynnbarrett.com

Beef Soup for a Cold Winter’s Day

I hadn’t used my Crock-Pot in maybe twenty years. But a Facebook cooking discussion inspired me to haul it out.

A friend recommended a version of the recipe below. It sounded perfect for the cold and nasty weather we’ve been having lately. But after reading over the directions, I made a number of modifications that streamlined the preparation. The original was called Crock-Pot Steak Soup. I decided that it would work just as well with stew beef. I can’t say I was right, because I never tried the steak version. But the less-expensive beef variation was delicious and had us both going back for seconds. I also added vegetables, using a combination of sliced celery, baby carrots and green beans.

I’ll call the dish Beef, Vegetable, and Noodle Soup. It was fabulous the first day; but on the second day, the noodles had absorbed a lot of the broth and changed the flavor. I had to add more broth to turn it back into soup.

Ingredients
2 T canola oil
2.5 lb stew beef cubes
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 t black pepper
4 cups beef broth
1 T tomato paste
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1-oz pkg onion soup mix
2-3 cups mixed vegetables (such as celery, baby carrots, and green beans)
2 cups uncooked wide egg noodles

Instructions
1.Place oil in a large, deep skillet. Add beef cubes. Sprinkle with flour and pepper. Turn cubes to coat with flour mixture. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring a few times, for about six minutes, until beef is browned.
2. Meanwhile combine beef broth, tomato paste and Worcestershire sauce in a large Crock-Pot. Whisk to incorporate the tomato paste into the liquid.
3. Add onion soup mix and beef cubes. Add vegetables, and stir to combine.
4. Cover and cook on high for one hour. Turn heat to low, and cook for an additional 7 hours, until beef is tender
5. Add noodles, cover and cook for 30 more minutes, until noodles are tender

Recipe and image courtesy of recipesthatcrock.com

Hollow Moon is Rebecca York’s latest book.  It is now up for pre-order at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Kobobooks.

Rebecca York

NY Times & USA Today best-seller, Rebecca York, is the author of over 150 books. She has written paranormal romantic thrillers for Berkley and romantic thrillers for Harlequin Intrigue. Her new romantic-suspense series, Decorah Security, is set at a detective agency where agents have paranormal powers or work paranormal cases. She also writes an Off-World series where each story is a science fiction romance taking place on a distant planet in the far future.
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UNFORGETTABLE VALENTINE, 6-Book Bundle #99cents

Unforgettable ValentineTo honor the happy lovers celebrating Valentine’s Day everywhere, six New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Authors have joined together to offer this beautiful collection of holiday romance stories. From full-length books to novellas, they all have one thing in common—a thrilling happily-ever-after that will make your heart beat faster. Every story in this collection is… UNFORGETTABLE! Don’t miss UNFORGETTABLE VALENTINE, 6-Book Bundle for 99 cents (also available for Kindle Unlimited).

SECOND CHANCE VALENTINE, Donna Fasano, USA Today bestselling author: Forced to face an old flame, can Josie keep her cool or will things heat up in the kitchen?

WEDDING SURPRISE, Mona Risk, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author: On Valentine Day, during her bridal shower, Claire meets her fiancé’s ex-girlfriend. Can this day bring the worst or best wedding surprise?

HOTSHOT COWBOY, Mimi Barbour, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author: Alone and stranded, can she trust the cowboy who put her in this position?

BLOSSOMS BY THE SEA, Traci Hall, USA Today bestselling author: He’s used to getting whatever he wants, but this time, he’s met a woman who offers something money can’t buy and makes him rethink what is really important in life.

THIRTY-DAY FIANCÉ, Leanne Banks, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author: Bombarded with unwanted attention when he is proclaimed the Bachelor of the Year, Nick Nolan asks his childhood friend to be his temporary, pretend fiancée. But what happens when a safe arrangement turns passionate: can Nick and Olivia break their 30-day deal in a trade for forever?

CHAMPAGNE FOR TWO, Patrice Wilton, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author: Christine is the feisty owner of an upscale dating service, content to find love for her clients, yet unwilling to take a chance on love herself. Hunky Derek is the man who almost got away!

What readers are saying about Unforgettable Valentine:

“…great collection of highly enjoyable stories!”

“…put me in the mood for a romantic Valentine’s Day.”

Find Unforgettable Valentine:

Kindle Worldwide

Find other $0.99 Bundles in the The Unforgettables Series:

Unforgettable Romances

Unforgettable Heroes

Unforgettable Christmas

Donna Fasano

USA TODAY BESTSELLING AUTHOR DONNA FASANO is a three-time winner of the HOLT Medallion, a CataRomance Reviewers Choice Award winner for Best Single Title, a Desert Rose Golden Quill Award finalist, a Golden Heart finalist, and a two-time winner of Best Romance of the Year given by BigAl’s Books & Pals Review Blog. Her books have sold nearly 4 million copies worldwide and have been published in two dozen languages. Her books have made the Kindle Top 100 Paid List numerous times, climbing as high as #5.

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