Monday, April 24, 2017


 A robin built a nest on the window ledge outside of the sauna. There was one egg on Saturday, two on Sunday, and sure enough, three today. I promised all of the grandchildren that I’ll keep checking on it every day. Ironically, I bought them each one of those window bird houses for Christmas—but they haven’t had any ‘takers’ as of yet.

This nest reminded me of years ago when our youngest son was a teenager. I’d hung a ‘decorative’ birdhouse off one of the flower boxes on the back deck, never imagining it was big enough for a bird to actually use. One afternoon my son yelled from upstairs, “Mom, grab the gray tape and meet me on the back deck.” A bird had used the house, but because it was ‘decorative’ the bottom was falling out due to the weight and the mommy bird was in a tizzy. We taped up the bottom and once the birds ‘flew the coop’ I threw that birdhouse away.

I do love all the new life of spring. The trees are budding, the tulips and Showy Lady Slippers are poking through the ground, and I’ve put out the hummingbird feeder and the oriel feeder. I also bought several bars of Irish Spring soap. I read that will help keep the deer from eating the Hostas, so we’ll see.

On the writing side, early readers are saying they love Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove, and are looking forward to more books in that series. Kathryn and I really enjoyed creating these stories. She has a post about the book over at Petticoats and Pistols, so stop by if you have a chance. We both will have more books in this series released in 2017 and 2018.

Twin sisters say "I do" in the Wild West! 


Mary McCary never wanted to be a mail-order bride, but falling off the Oak Grove train into Steve Putnam's lap changes everything… Could he be the cowboy to tempt her down the aisle?

Running from trouble, Maggie McCary signs up to be a mail-order bride. She doesn't intend to actually marry…until she shares one sensational kiss with Jackson Miller!

Stay happy! Life is good and the world is a better place because of you!

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

Wishing you many blessings and I hope that your day is shared with family and friends.

We hosted our annual egg hunt on Friday evening, and had a wonderful time. Never able to depend on the weather, we hold the event in my husband’s shop. I’ve lost count on how many hundreds of eggs I fill with candy, toys, and change, but it doesn’t take the kids long to find each and every one of them. So we add to the fun with a scavenger hunt. Special eggs have letters on them, and once found, they are placed on a sheet of tag board spelling out each child’s name. Once every one’s name is complete, and all the eggs are found, each child is given an envelope with a rhyming clue as to where their next envelope is. Everyone gets five clues, with the final one ‘suggesting’ where they will find their baskets. Old and young love the challenge of this, and I’m challenged each year coming up with new rhyming clues.

This year our three-year-old grandson’s basket was hidden inside the deer feeder, which he loves to fill with Papa every time they visit. After finding his basket with the help of his mommy and daddy, he came running up to me and said, “Grandma! Look! The deer left me this basket!”

While the children are collecting eggs, their parents have their own goodies to find. Hidden high
above all the eggs are bottles of adult beverages, and our three sons are as competitive as ever to find more than their brothers.

We always buy a couple fun games or things for the kids to keep at our house to play with, and this year that included one of those blow up costumes. This one is a dinosaur and the kids had a great time playing dinosaur tag, which they incorporated to include their squirt guns. It certainly was a fun time, and considering we had twenty-two people at our event this year, I’m glad I baked two hams!

On the writing side, THANK YOU for purchasing The Cowboy’s Orphan Bride. It’s been on best selling lists all because of you. I so appreciate your support and I do hope you enjoyed Garth and Bridgette’s story. 

Next up will be the first book in The Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove Series. I had so much fun collaborating on these stories with Kathryn Albright. Surprise Bride for the Cowboy and Taming the Runaway Bride will be released on June 1st.  Winning the Mail Order Bride will be released on September 1st and A Bride and A Baby for Christmas will be released in October in the Western Christmas Brides anthology. 

Stay happy and keep smiling. Life is good.

Monday, March 13, 2017

It Snowed

The weather man was right this time around, it snowed. The last time they predicted we’d get several inches, it all went south of us. So, as I write this, I’m looking out the sliding glass door thinking I really should go shovel off the patio, but then again, it’s March. The sun is going to do its job of melting the snow, so I think I’ll just let it be. Especially since I haven’t posted a new blog post in weeks. I’ve been making progress on my next book, which is due to my editor in a few weeks, so every minute on the computer has been focused on researching and working on that story.

The release date for The Cowboy’s Orphan Bride is quickly approaching (March 21st and April 1st). It’s now available for pre-order. I not only love this cover, I love this story. I had an early reader say:  "I have one warning about this book--do NOT have anything in your mouth when you are reading it because most likely the person or object nearest you will be wearing it. Throughout the book I laughed so hard. I also worried and was anxious to find out what was going to happen next. I definitely recommend this book!"

Speaking of early readers, I always have a few copies of each book to give away prior to the release date. If you are interested in obtaining a copy and upon reading it, posting a review on Amazon, Goodreads, or even your facebook page, just contact me via email, leave a comment here, or message me through facebook.

Next up will be the duet Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove which
includes two stories: Surprise Bride for the Cowboy and Taming the Runaway Bride (releasing May 21st and June 1st).

This was such a fun book to write. Kathryn Albright and I collaborated on the two stories in this book and created the town of Oak Grove, Kansas. She wrote one twin sister’s story and I wrote the other twin’s story. Then, much to our delight, it was turned into a series! So there are more Oak Grove stories coming! Characters readers meet in the first book go on to have their own happy-ever-after stories. The next one will be Winning the Mail Order Bride (releasing in September), and then A Bride and a Baby for Christmas (releasing in November). And there will be more Oak Grove stories next year.

I think that's enough for now...Stay happy and keep smiling! It looks good on you! 

Monday, February 6, 2017

Thank you!

Thank you so much for making me a #1 Author on Amazon in several categories! I can't ever thank you enough. Your support means so much to me. With every story I write, I'm forever hoping that 'readers' will enjoy the characters and the journey I take them on--especially on those night when I'm typing away at three in the morning. Though the ranking on Amazon changes hourly, my appreciation never does. XXOO

This week I'm working on edits for a 2017 Christmas story, as well as reading through the final galley for another Mail Order Bride of Oak Grove story, and I'm happy to say my agent has gotten a nibble on my ghost story! I'm so hopeful to some day get that story out to all of you!

Stay happy!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Happy Friday!

I hope you are all making fabulous progress in your holiday preparations.  Santa has stopped by our house a couple of times already this year. It’s a good thing he wasn’t expecting cookies either time. 

Because…On Thanksgiving Day, I took the pumpkin pies out of the oven and slid in the turkey, when, moments later, what to my wondering eyes did appear—FLAMES as the heating element shorted out and caught fire! 

I pulled out my old trusty portable roaster and we still had a wonderful Thanksgiving feast.  The next day, I ordered a new element. It arrived a couple of days later and hubby put it in. All worked fine for two days. Then POOF, with a puff of black smoke from the control panel, the entire stove quit. So, the next day, we went and bought a new stove. 

HOWEVER, it won’t be delivered until December 22nd. For the past few weeks, I’ve discovered what can and can’t be cooked in a microwave, electric frying pan, or crock pot. I’ve also learned that some things can, and turn out remarkably well. We’ve also taken advantage of the local restaurants that deliver, so it truly hasn’t been all that bad. 

We’ve already had a fair amount of winter weather, with more to come this weekend. Sub-zero temperatures along with several more inches of snow are forecasted for this weekend. After an outing this evening for a holiday party, I plan on spending the weekend snug and warm at home, writing. It shall be lovely. 

Almost as lovely as my new cover! I just received this yesterday and couldn’t be happier with it. I do believe Harlequin's cover artists are some of the best out there!  The Cowboy's Orphan Bride will be released in April. As children Garth and Bridgette vowed to be each other’s family, and were, until shipped west on an orphan train. The story takes place years later, when they ‘stumble’ across each other.  

I’m off to pick up a few things for this evening, so must log off. Stay happy, and warm, and enjoying all the blessings of the season!

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!!

We awoke to plenty of snow this morning, and while attempting to shovel the front patio, and because it was perfect snowman snow, I decided rolling the snow into balls for a snowman would be easier than shoveling it. Bear was at my side the entire time, but didn't pay a lot of attention to exactly what I was doing until I put the eyes on the snowman. I'm anxious to hear what our grandson Connor thinks of the snowman tomorrow.

After shoveling the deck and finishing the snowman, I spent the day prepping for tomorrow. It will be a fun day in which we'll eat too much, laugh a lot, and eat too much again. And for all of that, I'm extremely grateful.

I am thankful for so much, every day of my life—for living in a wonderful country, for freedom, for my right to worship God, for all the obvious and not to be taken lightly things which include my family, home, community, friends, vocation, my publishers and their belief in me, and especially the people who read and find delight in my books. Thanks for sharing this wonderful life with me.

And for all of you who end up with leftover Turkey, and want a delicious way to use it, here is my Chicken Wild Rice Soup. I've used turkey plenty of times. This is my family's all time favorite soup. 

Chicken Wild Rice Soup
6 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup chopped onions
½ cup chopped carrots
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup flour
2 cups cooked wild rice
2-3 tablespoons chicken flavored stock granules in 2-3 cups water
½ teaspoon salt
2-3 cups heavy whipping cream
2-3 cups cooked and cubed chicken breasts seasoned with Cavender’s Greek seasoning
Pepper, salt, and Thyme to taste

Cook wild rice per instructions on package, drain. Cook (either fry or microwave chicken sprinkled with Greek seasoning), cube. Heat the 2-3 cups water and add granules as directed on the package. In large soup pot, melt butter and, sauté onion, celery and carrots until tender. Blend flour with butter and veggies until thick and lumpy. Pour in hot chicken broth, stirring constantly until creamy. Boil for one minute, while stirring turn down heat and add chicken, pepper, salt and Thyme. Simmer for 5-10 min, and then stir in rice and cream. Let simmer for 5-10 min or transfer to a crock pot.

Disclaimer: I’m a ‘pinch’ and ‘dump’ type of cook, so I’ve estimated the measurements.

Happy Thanksgiving!