Sunday, July 16, 2017

Book of the Month and DIY Wine Rack

July started out with a bang! Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove was given a BEST BOOK rating over at Long and Short Reviews.

“LASR Best Book – For a book or story that is truly exceptional. You think about it when you’re not reading it. You wonder what happens to the characters when you finish. You would absolutely buy everything else this author had to offer. The highest praise – and reserved for only a few.”

Then it was voted Book of the Month! 
Kathryn and I are both enjoying how much people like Mary and Maggie’s stories!

Our niece and her family from Kansas were here for a week. We enjoyed a fabulous 4th of July celebration with them that included lots of laughter, food, fun, and fireworks. The day after they left, another family member from Kansas arrived and stayed for a few days, and this week my brother from Nebraska will be coming for a visit.  We also had a birthday party for our granddog Bear. And there will be more birthday parties later on this month. 

I’m happy to say my latest WIP has been accepted by my editor. Married to Claim the Rancher’s Heir will be released in February. 

Now, I’m deep into researching my next story. A WWII story set in London.  The first chapter is always the hardest for me to write, it’s the foundation for the rest of the story. 

Having got through chapter one yesterday, I took a break from writing today and made myself this wine rack. Our youngest son makes wine and brought us over several bottles last evening. Needing a place to store them, I went searching for something I could use as a wine rack and remembered we had some old metal wheels back by the garden. I attached the wheels to the board with hose clamps, bolted the wheels together and then painted it all black. After it dried, I sanded it down to show some patina, and added the old Scrabble letters. Now the wine is close at hand when company arrives. 

I hope you are all having a fun-filled summer!

Sunday, June 18, 2017

In Full Swing!

Summer is in full swing! Company from out of state, family reunions, parades, birthday parties, graduation parties…our weekends are booked through August. It’s so wonderful to have these fabulous gatherings and enjoy the sunny summer days. 
Thanks so much to all of you who have posted reviews for Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove. Both Kathryn and I appreciate your support and are so glad that you enjoyed the first book in this series!

Next up will be Winning the Mail Order Bride in August/September. Brett’s story was another fun one to write!

She was promised to another… 
When widow Fiona Goldberg and her two adorable sons arrive in Oak Grove, Kansas, proclaimed bachelor Brett Blackwell is instantly captivated. But when he learns she is promised to the mayor, he tries his best to keep his distance…

Out of desperation, Fiona had agreed to become a mail-order bride to the disagreeable, self-important mayor. But something about her neighbor Brett makes her feel safe. She knows she must fight her growing feelings for the forbidden blacksmith, even while longing for him to rescue her and take her as his bride himself!

The following book will be A Bride and a Baby for Christmas. This is Teddy White’s story (Oak Grove’s newspaper owner) and Hannah Olson (who is introduced in Brett’s story). A Bride and a Baby For Christmas is one story in the Western Christmas Brides anthology that will be released in September/October. 

Three heartwarming stories of Christmas in the Wild West. 
A Bride and Baby for Christmas by Lauri Robinson
Pregnant Hannah Olsen has made a list of Oak Grove's eligible men. A list that Teddy White sees—and he's not on it! Time for him to act so that both their Christmas wishes can come true.

Miss Christina's Christmas Wish by Lynna Banning 
Dedicated new teacher Christina Marnell feels her heart race as she watches Ivan Panovsky chop wood for the school. She had ruled marriage out, but Christmas is a time when miracles can happen…

A Kiss from the Cowboy by Carol Arens 
Kitson James and Livy York both have secrets, but can their love overcome the lies they've told? A Christmas kiss might help…

More Oak Grove books will be released in 2018 so stay tuned and enjoy your summer!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Empty Nesters

Yes, we are empty nesters once again. The baby birds are all grown up and off on their own. I took this picture on Tuesday and when the grandkids came to see them on Wednesday, the nest was empty. The kids were sad to see them gone, but had enjoyed watching the process. 
We had a fun and busy week with a family reunion with my father’s side of the family. It’s always so much fun to see those we haven’t seen in years and catch up on how everyone is doing. It’s also fun to meet in person all new additions to the family. 

On the writing side, I’m happy to announce The Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove released today in print! This is the first book in the Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove series. Several additional books will be released in 2017 and 2018!

Enjoy the upcoming long weekend!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The Robins at the Robinson's House

All four eggs hatched. (The last one hatched the day after I took this picture, but I feel bad disturbing Mama so I haven’t clicked another picture.) Our grandson dug a bunch of worms and ‘relocated’ them to the flower bed in front of the sauna so the Mama Robin could have easy pickings. Then, being four, he stood under the pine tree that she’d flown into waiting for her to go get the worms.  And was disappointed when it didn’t happen before he had to go home.

On the writing side…The first book in the Mail Order Brides of Oak Grove is coming soon! Kathryn Albright and I have had so much fun with this series! 

Sweet, sassy and double the trouble when twins Mary and Maggie sign contracts to become mail-order brides with every intention of escaping before the actual wedding!

Be kind, be happy, be yourself!

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!