Saturday, December 14, 2013

Christmas Traditions

     Every year we have a tradition of going to a Christmas tree farm to cut our tree. Generally this is a long process as we struggle to agree which is the perfect tree. This year we had fun looking for trees in 20 degree weather. Even the boys were frozen. Needless to say we found the right tree in record time. Then we went home and enjoyed a mug of hot chocolate with the grand kids. Nothing smells so wonderful as a fresh cut Christmas tree.

     What holiday tradition does your family share?
Write you tradition in the comment section.  By doing so you will be entered into a drawing for a $10.00  Amazon Gift card.

Friday, December 6, 2013

A Winter Night

We are sitting in front of the wood stove on this snowy night watching a Christmas movie, The Homecoming.

What do you do on snowy days/nights?

December contest: leave a comment for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card. Become a follower of my blog for two chances to win.

Monday, December 2, 2013

After the holiday

It's Monday after a Thanksgiving Weekend and I feel like a slug. I didn't over eat although I ate more pie and bread the last few days than I have for months. My daughter made a delicious pecan pie and didn't take home the leftovers so I had to eat finish it.

I know my lack of exercise is a major reason I feel sluggish. It's the start of a new week and a great time to get out there walking. Exercising is always on the bottom of my to due list despite the fact I know the more I workout the better I feel.

December contest--leave a comment for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card.

What is your favorite holiday food that's hard to resist? And how do you shake a sluggish feeling?

Saturday, November 30, 2013

New Release

Hope you had a good week. We've been busy with Thanksgiving and family the last few days. It was great having the family together for the evening. I always enjoy the togetherness of family dinners and the turkey leftovers.

I love contests and would like to share one with you. Starting December 1st if you leave a comment on a current or future blog you'll be entered in my December drawing for a $10 Amazon gift card. Become a follower of my blogsite and you'll have an extra chance to win.

My book Until I Met You has just been released below is an excerpt.

Jessica Reid held her seven month old nephew, Wyatt, to her shoulder and paced the length of her living room. She surveyed her once orderly home now littered with baby furniture and toys and smiled. At the moment, the room looked crowded, but the house had never been more animated as it was now. Wyatt had lived with her for only a month since his parent's tragic accident. Unfortunately, he was as fussy today as the day she brought him home.
Three feet into the room the flooring squeaked under her feet for the umpteenth time. Feeling the infant relax, Jessica thought he'd finally fallen asleep and slowed her gait. When Wyatt started crying again, she patted his back and hummed softly in his ear, then resumed her walking.
Blake Hudson, her neighbor and friend since kindergarten, had stopped by for their Saturday morning coffee. She wore her strawberry blonde hair pulled back in a loose tail. If Blake followed her usual routine, she'd just come from a workout at the gym wearing her spandex shorts and lavender top. Blake was the kind of friend who knew everything about Jessica yet didn't use it against her.
Within half an hour, Renee Wilson from the end of the cul-de-sac came over carrying a pink box of pastries. Jessica didn't have to see the contents to know there was a decadent dessert inside which would require an extreme workout to counterbalance the calorie intake. She shook her head.
Renee set the box on the coffee table. "Don't give me that look, Jessie. You know I watch what I eat all week so I can splurge on Saturday. I celebrate every Saturday that I made it through another work week. Some nut case has been calling the office the last couple of days. So I'm indulging in a little emotional eating."
"I'm sorry, sweetie. I didn't' realize your work was so rough this week," Jessica said.
Blake lifted the lid and peeked inside. "What did you bring today?"
"There was a sale on cream puffs." Renee bit into the creamy confection. She closed her eyes and a serene look softened her face. "That's heavenly. You should stop by that new bakery on Court Street. Their pastries are sinful."
Reaching into the box, Blake grumbled. "I'll have to jog another five miles to work this off."
Jessica smiled at her friends' bantering, a normal occurrence in her chaotic life. The three of them had gotten together most Saturday mornings for as long as she could remember. Her friends had often stopped by, offering to help with Wyatt. Jessica didn't want to insult them by not accepting their help, but she knew they had even less experience with infants than she did.
With pastries in hand, her two friends moved to flank both sides of the large window which faced the street. Renee sat on the arm of the couch, her stocking feet on the cushion. Blake stood to the left of the sofa. The women were so intent on what they were watching they seemed unaware of the crying child or Jessie's pacing.
"You would think as new as this house is the floor boards wouldn't make any noise." Her friend Blake opened the curtain wider and held it against the window frame and continued her vigilance.
"Newer is not always better," Jessica reminded her friend.
From her perch on the arm of the couch, Renee's short auburn hair and petite frame gave her the appearance of a pixie. "You can say that again. Last year, I had to call the repairman twice about my new washer."
"That had more to do with the repairman's butt than your washer not working," Blake added.
Renee raised one shoulder. "You've got me on that one." She returned her attention to the scene outside the window.
All three women lived on Sweetbrier Circle, a quiet cul-de-sac in the heights of Forest Ridge. Renee and Blake had lived next to each other for over a year. Jessica was the newcomer to the group; she'd moved into the neighborhood a scant six months ago.
"What are you two staring at?" Jessica walked toward them as she finished pacing the length of the room. Before she turned around for another pass, she too glanced out the window.
A large white and orange moving van with scenic drawings of California was parked across the street. The metal ramp was propped up to the back door.
"I don't see what's so interesting."
The baby started to fuss in her arms, so Jessie turned to wear the carpet out in the other direction.
Before she'd moved two steps, Blake reached out her hand to stop her. "Oh no you don't. You can bounce Wyatt here for a moment. You need to take a good look outside. What do you see?"
Jessica stepped closer to the window and instantly saw the man across the street. Even from this distance she could see his muscular arms strain against the weight of the box he carried. She wondered what it would feel like to be wrapped in his embrace and to experience the heat of his body next to hers. A warm flush enveloped her face. Now she understood why women fanned themselves when they had a hot flash, and why her friends were ogling out the window.
The man was approximately seventy-five feet away, yet she felt an instant attraction to him. His hair was cut as short as the military cadets Jessica had seen on the college campus. On this man the style actually accentuated his masculinity. The simple faded orange T-shirt he wore molded to his chest, hugging his muscular physique.
He had a straight aristocratic nose. Stubble darkened his face, and she longed to feel the roughness against her palm. Jessica shook her head, wondering why such personal thoughts were directed to this stranger.
He glanced up. The man's gaze locked with hers. Predatory was the first word that came to mind. He gave a simple nod then continued on with his work. Tall and lean, his body equaled that of a professional quarterback. His eyes were hooded from this distance, so she couldn't see what color they were but instinctively knew his piercing gaze didn't miss anything.
Blake and Renee's nonstop debate on jogging verses speed walking flowed around her. Both of her friends were oblivious to Jessica's nonverbal exchange with their new neighbor.
Returning her attention to the action across the street, Blake asked, "What do you see?"
Studying the man again, Jessica couldn't remember the last time she had a date. A meaningful exchange with a man seemed like a life time ago.
"I see a beautiful spring day with the deep blue sky. And a van is blocking my view."
Blake reached over and patted her shoulder. "Honey, if that's all you see, you definitely need to get out more often."
"Who's Hercules?" Renee asked.
"I don't know but he's fun to watch." Blake pretended to wipe her brow. "Why don't you go over and introduce yourself, Jess. Then you can tell us all about him." Blake released the curtain then sipped her coffee.
"The man definitely has some muscles." Jessica couldn't help but stare. "Did he buy the house?" For the last six months, the three women were the only ones living on Sweetbrier Circle.
"That's a nice house. I almost bought that one. But the backyard had too much grass," Renee said.
Jessica rolled her eyes at her friend. "Since when do you mow your own lawn?"
"I didn't know at the time I'd date a landscaper who'd offer to do my yard work."
The room fell silent when the newcomer walked outside again. From this distance, he appeared to be nearly six feet tall but obviously more brawn than the average Joe. His t-shirt fit tight, clinging to the well-defined muscles underneath.
"A man in the neighborhood; that's a nice change." Blake met Jessie's gaze and lifted her mug to her. "You should go for him."
"Right," Jessica exaggerated the word as she nodded. "What are the odds of a man dating a woman with a baby? Besides, when do I have time for a man in my life?"
"Renee is dating her yard boy, and after my last relationship, I've sworn off dating so that leaves you." Blake started to reach for Wyatt. "Go introduce yourself."
Anxious that the other woman was serious, Jessica stepped back then started pacing again.
"I finally got the baby to sleep. You're not moving him." Curious about the man, she decided to give him a second look. Trying to look nonchalant, she turned in the middle of the room and strolled back to the window. Although spying on him was a little juvenile, she enjoyed watching the stranger. His agile body moved purposefully as he walked out of the van carrying an office chair.
After setting the piece of furniture on the driveway he turned and looked in their direction. Jessica felt his gaze burn into her. She froze. Her two friends frantically waved to catch his attention. A curt nod was given by the buff man.
"Jessie, you're not going to wave to your future boyfriend?" Renee asked.
"Are we in middle school again? The two of you are ahead of yourselves. I'm not going out with him, and he's not my boyfriend. Besides, I smell like the baby." As excuses go, her reply was lame. They all knew that, but her friends surprisingly let it pass without a comment.
Shifting Wyatt up, Jessie pointed with her free hand across the street. "A man who looks that good is probably married and has half a dozen kids. I know where I'd be every night if he were my husband."
At that moment the man in question glanced up as she was gesturing across the street and waved to her in return. With a sigh, she stepped away from the window. Joking with her friends about a boyfriend was one thing. The thought of a man in her life, one who wanted to date her, was unrealistic.
Feeling Wyatt's body relax with sleep, she walked down the hall to the baby's room.
Returning a strand of hair behind her ear, she looked down at the sleeping infant. A lot had happened to the little fellow in his seven months of life. He'd lost his parents in a car accident and moved in with her. Adjusting to the baby's schedule was all Jessie could handle at the moment. She didn't have time for a man in her life. After placing Wyatt in the crib, she tucked his blanket around him. Jessica whispered, "You're the only man for me."

Monday, November 25, 2013


I'd hoped to be back here over the weekend but housework was a little demanding. Cleaning isn't on my top ten list these days so there was a lot to do. Now the house is a little less cluttered and I feel energizer.

I've been in a Christmas mood the last couple of weeks. For me part of the holiday is making gifts for the little ones. So Saturday I took several breaks from household chores and worked on a sewing project for my granddaughter. I only need to make two more.

This week is Thanksgiving and we've planned our menu. We have to have our family favorites of Cranberry Salad. What is your family's favorite?

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Free book

My book Everlasting Love is now free on the Kindle Select Program.
Tomorrow is my long day at work so I'll be back on the weekend.

Cliffhanger from Everlasting Love by Rosemary Indra.

            In a small town he had to be cautious. Driving too close to his intended victim would be obvious. He’d lagged back allowing more distance between his car and the one in front of him. When several vehicles exited the highway, he hung back even farther. His prey was no longer insight but he knew the Chevy was still there. He gripped the steering wheel tighter and tried to be patient.
            As the city gave way to the mountainous forest, he saw his opportunity; pressing on the accelerator he started to close the space between them. Now, in this isolated wildness, he needed to move in for the kill.
            No one would find a body or the missing vehicle for some time. This was the perfect setup. No witnesses. No surveillance cameras. For once and all, he could loosen the chain around his neck and live a carefree life again.
            He sped up and still no sign of the other tail lights. The driver must have turned off to another road. He’d passed countless roads since entering the highway. Finding which road the other vehicle used would be impossible.
He wiped his hand across the back of his neck. Pulling over to the side of the road, gravel crunched beneath his tires. He pounded his fist on the steering wheel. He’d quit his search for now. He’d find his victim another time. Then he’d free himself from his burden.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


It's a beautiful sunny, crisp day here in the Willamette Valley. This is a lovely change from the gray, downpours we had yesterday. The dogs ran like crazy when I let them out this morning.

Today's a work at home day for me. I have an Ebay store which I'll work on for awhile then plan to focus on my writing. Unfortunately my attention span is very short today. I've already distracted myself by clearing a corner of my desk. I'm a stacker and when I can't see the top of the desk I know it's time to start cleaning.

Sorting through the stacks of paperwork I realize how many recipes I've copied off of the internet and Facebook. I've found a Cranberry Sauce with Pears recipe that sounds great for Thanksgiving.

Cranberry Sauce with Pears
by Woman's Day Kitchen

1 pound cranberries, thawed, if frozen
1 pear, peeled and cut into 1/4" pieces
2 teaspoons grated orange zest
2/3 cups granulated sugar
1 cup apple cider or juice

1. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries, pear, orange zest, and sugar; stir in the apple cider.
2. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries bust and the sauce thickens, 15 to 20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

A Weekend Reprieve

I've been feeling a little under the weather this weekend so I did something I haven't done in awhile. I read. The captivating characters of The Lightkeeper by Susan Wiggs kept me company.
I recently heard 67% of American's go to work when they're sick. What do you do when you're feeling poorly?

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Follow my blog

I will be blogging at Nov. 15-17th, 2013. With excerpts from my new book Until I Met You. Stop by for a preview. Release date December 1, 2013.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Blog challenges

Thank you for stopping by today. I write contemporary romance and I'm an avid reader. However, I'm not a technical person and it's a real challenge setting up this blog. Please stop by again to see the transformation into a working blog.