On tour with Michael Rupured~~Whippersnapper

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AboutTheBook

Whippersnapper-final (1)TITLE: Whippersnapper

AUTHOR: Michael Rupured

PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press

COVER ARTIST: Maria Fanning

LENGTH: 220 Pages

GENRE: Contemporary

RELEASE DATE: January 29, 2016

BLURB: Tellumo Magnamater is a fresh-out-of-college, first-year English teacher at Salt Lick County High School in Kentucky. He rides the bus to and from work, and every day he walks to the gym behind his small efficiency apartment to exercise. Perhaps because of being raised by two lesbians, Tellumo is attracted to older men. He sets his sights on fifty-something available bachelor Oliver Crumbly. But Tellumo isn’t the only resident interested in Oliver.

Peggy Tucker, a widow approaching her sixtieth birthday, is determined to marry again, and she thinks Oliver is her perfect match. Despite Tellumo and Peggy striking up a friendship at the gym, neither realizes they are interested in the same man. But the joke might be on both of them. Oliver, a retired history teacher, is the original crotchety old man who hates everything and everybody—especially young people.

 

 

 

BookReview

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Tellumo has just moved to a new, small town in Kentucky. He is throwing himself into work ad worried he isn’t doing well enough. The only recreation he has is the gym after school, and occasional visits from his best friend, Melody. Raised by two moms he credits that for his affinity for older men. He has his eye on one in the Gym, but the Sliver Fox seems to avoid him.

Tellumo befriends a sweet older woman he met in the gym; little does he know she is trying to get the attention of the same man.

Oliver has decided five bad relationships are enough and is trying to enjoy his retirement. He is the epitome of a crotchety older man: fussing and griping about everyone and everything. The thing that bothers him the most is the younger generation always on their fancy phones.

This story was a laugh a minute. It is also one you need to make time to read in one sitting because you won’t want to put it down.

Whippersnapper is a character driven story about three people, Tellumo,  Peggy, and Oliver. You get a well-written story about how these three meet, how their lives intertwine and a lot of surprises along the way. It is a feel-good story with no sexual content and lots of laughs. I laughed so much my hubby must’ve thought I was nuts.

Though it’s not exactly a romance towards the end there is a little bit of romance; I highly recommend this story.

If you like funny stories with lots of interesting characters, unique main characters, humor with a touch of romance, you will love this book!
* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through http://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com  *

GuestPost

Whippersnapper: More Fun than a Barrel of Monkeys

Before I wrote Whippersnapper, I had no idea how hard writing my first three novels had been. They’re set in the past, in real places, with a lot of historical references. Making sure all the details were correct was a ton of work.

Whippersnapper takes place in Fallisville, a fictional town in Central Kentucky. Fact-checking wasn’t an issue. Everything in the story is made up.

Well, not everything. That’s what makes writing fiction so much fun. Only the author knows what’s made up and what’s real.

Tellumo Magnamater is consumed by the demands of his first job, teaching English at Salt Lick County High. A daily trip to the gym relieves stress and keeps him healthy. For months he’s admired an attractive older man he calls the Silver Fox he sees at the Fit as a Fiddle gym.

The Silver Fox is Oliver Crumbly, a retired history teacher who, after a string of failed relationships, finds himself alone again. Other than grocery stores and doctor’s offices, the gym is the only place he ever goes. The whippersnapper (Tellumo) represents everything Oliver hates about the younger generation.

Peggy Tucker is a widow with a thankless job at the Salt Lick County Department of Motor Vehicles. She joined the gym to lose twenty pounds in hopes of finding a husband. She sets her sights on Oliver too. She doesn’t know much about him, but he’s just about the only eligible bachelor in Fallisville.

Things have changed a lot in my lifetime. Some go along, some don’t. Tech-savvy Tellumo is the future. Oliver holds on to the old technology and the way things used to be with every fiber of his being. Peggy dabbles with technology, but is behind the times and constrained by her meager income.

The premise still makes me laugh, and I had a blast writing the story. Some moments make me laugh out loud no matter how many times I read them. Some scenes still make me cry, so keep a tissue handy.

 

Excerpt

 

Oliver Crumbly watched the Salt Lick County snowplow scrape the street in front of his house with a mixture of satisfaction and relief. Ten days of complaining had finally paid off. Two feet of snow had fallen in the day or two leading up to Christmas. A week later, before plows or salt trucks had reached Thoroughbred Acres, another six inches had fallen.

He’d been trapped at home since Christmas Eve. Worn treads had kept his Taurus from getting any traction on the flat street in front of his house. Driving out of the hilly subdivision would have been impossible.

Bill Pinkley, head meteorologist for local Channel 13, said El Nino or El Nina had caused the winter storm. Oliver couldn’t remember which, or why what happened so far away made a difference in the weather in Northern Kentucky, but if Bill Pinkley said so, it must be true. Heeding his advice to stock up on groceries ahead of the first flurries had kept Oliver from running out of food.

Thirty inches was a lot of snow to have fallen in a week’s time, and Calumet Circle was in the back of Thoroughbred Acres. Still, ten days was too long to wait for snow removal. Calls to the county road department had fallen on deaf ears. The surly customer service representative had hung up on him—four times. Miss Bethany Williams, Customer Service Representative II, was about to learn messing with Oliver Crumbly was a mistake. He’d mailed a lengthy letter detailing her incompetence and rude behavior to the director of the county road department with copies to the mayor, Oliver’s representative on the city council, and the Kentucky and U.S. Departments of Transportation.

Too bad Kevin Leonard had missed the blizzard. For eight years, Oliver’s ex had complained about the lack of winter snow. But then, nothing in Kentucky had suited Kevin. He’d grown up in the upper Midwest, where life was better in every way. Eight years of Kevin’s delusions of grandeur, condescending attitude, and manufactured facts had been a good four too many.

Oliver didn’t miss him one little bit. Not anymore. He dropped into his recliner, turned on the television, and flipped to the TV Guide Channel. His forty-eight-year-old ex had returned to North Dakota last February to live with his parents, and according to a mutual friend, was still unemployed. Because Mr. and Mrs. Leonard had often driven their camper down to Kentucky for weeklong visits, Oliver knew them a lot better than he’d have preferred. In his opinion, the sorry son and his parents deserved each other.

The viewing options scrolling on the screen at a snail’s pace failed to keep his attention, and his mind wandered. Falling for the wrong guys was Oliver’s gift. The first time his heart had been broken, he’d believed he would die. But he’d lived to love again… and again… and again… and again. Five times he’d survived a broken heart and the end of yet another relationship gone bad. Getting over kicking men out of his life had grown easier with experience. After Kevin left, Oliver’s battle-scarred heart had healed in record-breaking time.

BuyLinks

Dreamspinner Press (eBook)

Dreamspinner Press (Paperback)

Amazon US

Amazon UK

All Romance eBooks

Barnes & Noble

Kobo

AuthorBio

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Michael Rupured loves to write. Before learning the alphabet, he filled page after page with rows of tiny circles he now believes were his first novels, and has been writing ever since. He lives in Athens, Georgia, grew up in Lexington, Kentucky, came out as a gay man at the age of twenty-one in the late 1970s, and considers surviving his wild and reckless twenties to have been a miracle. To find out what Michael’s up to now, visit his blog (rupured.com), follow him on Twitter (@crotchetyman) or send an e-mail message to [email protected]

:: Website & Blog :: Facebook :: Twitter :: Google+ ::

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TourSchedule

January 27: Prism Book Alliance

January 28: Drops of Ink

January 29: The Purple Rose Tea House

February 1: Kathy Mac Reviews

February 2: Cathy Writes Romance

February 3: Diverse Reader

February 4: Divine Magazine

February 5: The Novel Approach

February 8: Elisa – My reviews and Ramblings

February 9: Loving Without Limits

February 10: MM Good Book Reviews

February 11: Love Bytes Reviews

February 12: Unquietly Me

February 15: BFD Book Blog

February 16: Bayou Book Junkie

February 17: 3 Chicks After Dark

February 18: Alpha Book Club

February 19: My Fiction Nook

 

Cat’s Meow Reviews that Purr~~ Valentines Special ~~Valentines Pets and Kisses Box set

Hi Y’all Its time for a new review special. This month I am featuring Valentine books. Some will have sweet romances of Valentine stories other may have the cupid himself. I have rounded up a few great sounding books so join me for the fun and see if you find a book or several to add to your reading list this month.

I am kicking the month off with a boxed set called Valentine Pets and Kisses. It has 14 sweet romances books by 14 fabulous authors.

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I am reviewing three of the stories for you this week and featuring Rachelle Alaya, Aubrey Wynne, and Cindy Flores Martinez.

First up is Aubrey Wynne with

19 Ivy Lane –  A mysterious woman and her cat befriend a postman and set tongues wagging on Ivy Lane. But when he delivers a long-awaited letter, will his heart be “returned to sender?”

Ivy Lane cover400x550 copy

My Review ~5 meows

Eloise is a young want to be actress. She is young, beautiful and gullible. She falls for a popular screenwriters charms and thinks he is going to ask her to marry him. Instead, he tells her he is going to go to Rome for a shoot. Left near penniless and homeless he makes her and offer to get a place his aunt left him in a small remote town ready to place on the market.
Victor, the local mailman, has had his eye on 19 Ivy-lane for all of his life. It has been his dream home but when the widow died and left it to her sister, no one ever came to sell it. One day a beautiful woman shows up to clean it up. Will he get more in the bargain than a home or will he get broken heart?

19 Ivy-lane is a poignant historical, romance. I loved Eloise and Victor and routed all the way. If you like a lovely, well-written, clean historical romance you will adore this one!

I asked Aubrey if she ever received a Pet for Valentines.

The Year of The Fish: I wanted a puppy or another horse. My husband did not. “We have two horses and a mule and two dogs. We’re good.” Over 40, I knew it would fill that maternal need that my classroom children could not. I needed something else to smother.

On Valentine’s Day, my stubborn husband presented with a beta fish. Much to his surprise, I loved him. I named him Azul for his bright beautiful blue color, put him in a huge crystal flower vase (that made my mother daily, wiggling his tail.

Yes, I know. That’s how they swim. Yes, I know. They can’t “hear.” But I swear that fish enjoyed my company. He would stay and watch me for as long as I sat next to his crystal aquarium. He lived almost three years. Quite long for a beta, I think. And I give credit the one-sided conversations we had.

Meet  Aubrey Wynne

Bestselling and award-winning author Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trail riding and all things Christmas. Her stories, Merry Christmas, Henry, and Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies received Best Short Romance and Other in the Preditors & Editors Reader’s Choice of 2013 and 2014.

Aubrey’s life experiences are often hidden “between the lines” of her books. As a volunteer humane investigator for rural Illinois, the furry friends she has encountered often make appearances in her stories. The upcoming  series “A Vintage Romance” was inspired by tales of her stepfather, who served for the British Air Force in WWII. The stories will be set in the first half of the 20th century, beginning with 19 Ivy Lane, in 1950s Hollywood. Wynne’s first love is historical romance. Her medieval fantasy series “Medieval Encounters” will launch in 2016 with Rolf’s Quest.

You can stalk—oops—follow Aubrey
Website:

http://aubreywynneauthor.wordpress.com

Amazon page:

http://www.amazon.com/AubreyWynne/e/B00II8QD6G/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/magnificentvalor

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/Aubreywynne51

Pinterest:

https://www.pinterest.com/aubreywynne51/

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/Aubreywynne51

Next up is Rachelle Alaya and The Valentine Hounddog

Valentine Hound Dog – Rachelle Ayala
A fashion designer and her basset hound puppy convince a burned ex-firefighter that beauty is never skin deep and neither is love.

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 My Review 5 meows 

I loved this story. It is my first in the Have a Hart series( I did buy the first after reading this) and am eagerly waiting for Connor’s story.
Valentine Hounddog is a sweet short story about a beautiful fashion designer and an ex-fireman that was burned severely in a fire. This is a fresh take on the beauty and the beast story though I hated whenever the presses or anyone referred to him as a beast. I never saw him as anything but a hero and a very sexy, sweet, kind man at that.
Take a hot man that risk’s his life to save children falls in love with a cute, funny basset hound and a fashion designer he thinks is out of his league you have a well-written story you won’t want to put down.

I asked Rachelle a favorite Valentine Memory

  Playing Stupid Cupid in our college dorm and buying nasty magazines for my target. Cutting out pictures and pasting them inside a heart shaped box of chocolate so when he opened the chocolate box everyone got a great view of the pictures. 

Meet Rachelle

Rachelle Ayala is a bestselling author of contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Her foremost goal is to take readers on a shared emotional journey with her characters as they grow and become more true to themselves. Rachelle believes in the power of love to overcome obstacles and feels that everyone should find love as often as possible, especially if it’s within the pages of a book.

Her book, Knowing Vera, won the 2015 Angie Ovation Award, and A Father for Christmas garnered a 2015 Readers’ Favorite Gold Award.

She is also a writing teacher and founder of the Romance In A Month writing community. She lives in California with her husband and has three children and two birds.

You can stalk—oops—follow Rachelle

Download a FREE surprise ebook by subscribing to her newsletter: http://bit.ly/RachAyala and find her books at online retailers Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple iBookstore, Google Play, and Smashwords. Borrow her books at Scribd.

Amazon Author Page: http://amazon.com/author/rachelleayala

Newsletter: http://bit.ly/RachAyala [get free copy of Christmas Stray]

My Sales Links: http://rachelleayala.me/books/christmas-stray/

Facebook Reader’s Club: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ClubRachelleAyala/

Reader’s Guide: http://rachelleayala.me/reading-guide/

Website: http://rachelleayala.me

Blog: http://rachelleayala.com

Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RachelleAyalaWriter/posts

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RachelleAyalaWriter

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AyalaRachelle

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/rachelleayala

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/ayalarachelle/

Last but  not least is  Cindy Flores Martinez with Three plus Three by Cindy Flores Martinez

ThreePlusThreeSmaller

 

Two years after losing her husband, a grieving widow, Violet, and their beloved bichon fries visit their favorite place the day before Valentine’s Day. While they are there, Violet meets a handsome widower who makes her feel alive again.

My Review 5 meows

  I can’t say much more about this without spoilers the blurb above says it all.

Three Plus Three is a bit sadder than the other two, yet just as beautiful and a sweet romance. My heart went out to both Violet and Tom. A lovely well-written story perfect for a valentine read.

Cindy is going to share a favorite Valentine Memory.

My Favorite Valentine’s Day

by

Cindy Flores Martinez

 

When I look back through the past, I can remember so many wonderful Valentine’s Days. There were the times my dad took my mom and me to dinner, the times I went to school dances or parties, and the times I celebrated with the men in my life. I can even remember some of the gifts I received, but when I consider my most favorite Valentine’s Day, my thoughts drift back to my childhood. Nothing else was more exciting than being in the first, second and third grade and celebrating that special day at school.

Every year was the same fun-filled experience. The night before the big event, my parents would take me to the store where I pored over all the boxed Valentine’s Day cards, which always had a variety of designs on the inside. Choosing only one wasn’t easy, but I finally settled on a collection. Afterward, I would rush home, spread them all out on the dining room table and decide which students I wanted to give them to. The prettiest cards always went to my friends. The cards I liked the least were for the mean kids. It was my childish revenge, I guess.

The next day, the anticipation overwhelmed me as I made my way to school with all of those cards carefully stored inside a shoe box. Sheer excitement followed as we all exchanged cards and then admired the ones we received during our party, which was full of sweet Valentine treats. Those days were so simple.A complete contrast to the romantic dinners and gifts of adulthood, but they were unforgettable. I’m sure I’m not the only one who fondly looks back at those times.

 

.You can Buy a copy
Amazon US: http://bit.ly/VPKK
Amazon UK: http://bit.ly/VPKUK
Barnes & Noble Nook: http://bit.ly/VPKNok
Kobo: http://bit.ly/VPKKobo

Google Play: http://bit.ly/VPKGp
Apple iBooks: http://bit.ly/VPKiBk

You can stalk—oops—follow Cindy

Website: www.cindyfloresmartinez.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cindyfloresmartinezauthor

Twitter: www.twitter.com/AuthorCindy

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FOURTEEN ALL-NEW, SWEET VALENTINE ROMANCES

Candy and canines. Flowers and felines. Celebrate this Valentine’s Day with your sweethearts of the human and fuzzy varieties!

Nothing is more heart-warming than kisses from the pet who adores you and the man who loves you, so snuggle up with VALENTINE PETS & KISSES — an anthology of fourteen sweet romances from USA Today bestselling and award-winning authors — and strike the perfect mood for moonlit walks and candlelight dinners with your pet and sweetheart.

Valentine Hound Dog – Rachelle Ayala
A fashion designer and her basset hound puppy convince a burned ex-firefighter that beauty is never skin deep and neither is love.

The Crazy Girl’s Handbook – DelSheree Gladden
Watching her nephews was supposed to be a fun and relaxing weekend for Greenly, not a never ending disaster all witnessed by the best blind date she ever stood up.

The Vet’s Valentine Gift – J.L. Campbell
A veterinarian is caught between his job, an ex, a menagerie and love. Can a little Cupid fix things by Valentine’s Day?

Her Perfect Catch – K.L. Brady
Years of faithful dog-sitting pays sweet dividends when a struggling sports writer scores tickets to the Super Bowl and encounters her favorite football player.

Inflamed – Jade Kerrion
A firefighter running from his past convinces a hard-luck single mother to believe in happy endings.

Remember When – Hope Welsh
Laura and Brent really tried to make their marriage work, but in the end, it just wasn’t meant to be–or was it?

Your Biggest Fan? – Sydney Aaliyah Michelle
Snowed in with the man of her dreams, a football fan and her dog find love.

The Feline Fix – Caroline Bell Foster
A scientist questions her cat’s loyalty when it comes to love and a hunky policeman.

Trembling Hearts – Suzette Riddick

A daring young woman crashes into the life of a disfigured recluse and his pooch. Can love be far behind?

Valentino, Be Mine – Tina D.C. Hayes
Sparks fly when two people who can’t stand each other wind up dog-sitting a rambunctious little Yorkie that needs a new home.

Lost and Found – Jeanne Bannon
Stuck with her ex’s puppy, a young teacher meets a new man after a series of unfortunate events.

Surviving San Francisco – Susan Oloier
A small town girl survives San Francisco after she hits a cat and falls for a handsome veterinarian.

19 Ivy Lane – Aubrey Wynne A mysterious woman and her cat befriend a postman and set tongues wagging on Ivy Lane. But when he delivers a long-awaited letter, will his heart be “returned to sender?”

Three Plus Three – Cindy Flores Martinez
A grieving widow and her beloved doggie meet a handsome widower the day before Valentine’s Day.

More books by Rachelle Ayala

 

Michal’s Window

Sports Romances

Played by Love

Playing the Rookie

Roaring Hot!

Playing Without Rules

The Remingtons: Leap, Laugh, Love

Intercepted by Love [Parts 1 – 6]

Playing Catch

Christmas Romances

A Father for Christmas

Christmas Flirt

Christmas Stray

A Pet for Christmas

Christmas Lovebirds

Santa’s Pet

Jewells in Love

Whole Latte Love

 

Chance for Love

Broken Build

Hidden Under Her Heart

Knowing Vera

 

Sánchez Sisters

Taming Romeo

Claiming Carlos

 

#snippetsunday~~A touchy situation

Snippet Sunday

Hi, Y’all! It’s time for Snippet Sunday again.  I am continuing with my sweet contemporary romance Sweet Gypsy Rose. over the past few weeks, you have met the main Characters, Gypsy Rose, Frank, and Ray. This week I am doing something very different. Since this is a first draft I add notes to myself. I left these notes in this snippet.  Feel free to answer one or all of the questions I posed to myself.

This is a rough draft and the only eyes on it has been mine… so remember this is a diamond in the rough.

Sweet Gypsy Rose copyright 2014

Of all the women in the world why would God choose this one for me. For heaven’s sake I’m 39, have only kissed a girl once and hated it, a loner, and have a serious case of OCD. This woman is my polar opposite. She is an open book to the public, friendly, charming outgoing, seems to volunteer and participate in everything. Oh yeah! I almost forgot. She is drop dead gorgeous in an outlandish way. She makes me think of a cross between Madonna with an overdose of Cher tossed in for good measure.
This has to be a cruel trick of fate. I’ve never been interested in a woman since my fateful prom night and now I eat, breathe and sleep this woman. I can’t get her out of my mind.
When she walked in the door today, my first instinct was to run to the bathroom to hide. That didn’t happen. I was waylaid by the teller manager on the way (find out what this is called) to relieve one of the ladies who needed to take her daughter to the doctor. I quickly took care of my business, washed my hands till they were pink from the hot water( is this necessary or should I leave it out.) and ducked into the lounge to grab an extra bottle of sanitizer from my locker. I didn’t want to take a chance on that booth being out. Besides I prefer my own brand with a moisturizer in it, not the generic stuff the bank has.
I look longingly at my office across the floor wishing I was in there hiding under my desk. Her beautiful face lights up with the most radiant smile as our eyes meet. She speaks to everyone she passes as she looks the lines over(do I need something else here something like she is sizing up the situation), stopping to hug, shake hands or even kiss a few on the cheek. She greets everyone by name, asking about their family. I think she knows everyone in town on a personal level.
My hands shake. I hoped she won’t choose my line. I probably won’t have to worry. She may have a favorite teller, most people do. Thankfully by the time she is done with her meet and greet my line has become longer than the others. My heart begins to somersault as I look up and see her standing at the end. Oh shit!(should I leave out?) What do I do? I’m trapped behind this counter with no choice but to face both my biggest fear and my fantasy all in one fell swoop.
“Hello, Ms.Ceely what can I do for you today.” (Do I need something here?)
“Oh Mr. Taylor I bet you could do lots for me.” She winks. The pretty woman actually winks at me. No denying she is flirting with me. Me. Plain, Mr. Invisible me. “Call me Gypsy Rose. I’d say Ms. Ceely is my mom but she might smack you for calling her that. You’d be safe calling Gram Ms. Ceely the first time you meet her. If she likes you she will tell you to call her Grams, if she doesn’t, it’s best to avoid her like the plague.” She shoots me a precocious smile. I’m doomed. I stand there frozen in place as she extends a hand to me. I feel like an idiot. I’ve wanted to touch her ever since I saw her, but she has touched every person in this room. I can feel my body trembling as I slowly reach out. I glance at the Hand sanitizer. She follows my gaze, reaches out, sanitizes her hands, re-extending it to me. Her hand is so small and soft. I actually like the feel of it.

I hope you are enjoying this story and will come back next week  to see what Gypsy Rose is up to.

If you missed meeting Gypsy Rose week 1 you can catch up here.  

If you Missed meeting Frank you can check him out here 

Want to read about a complication in the form of a sexy ex? Meet Ray Here.

If you are in the mood for more fun snippets, skate on over to visit V. L. Locey.

If you would like a taste of a paranormal fantasy check out Valkyries Curse by Ellie Mack. 

#foodiefriday~~Time to heat things up

We finally got a little winter weather.  Sadly enough it was sleet and no snow on Wednesday, but then  Friday we got about 4 to 5 inches. It’s freezing out. The perfect time to curl up with a good book in front of the fireplace (even if it is a fake heater).

 

D molly and fireplace 2015

 

It’s also the perfect time for  some comfort food. I wanted a good beef roast but wanted something different. I decided to make a Southwestern stew. This recipe is my own creation.

I 1to 2-pound chuck roast (mine was about 3 And a half, so I sliced some against the grain for fajitas or stir-fry later in the week).

I can black beans drained and rinsed

1 can or-tel tomatoes(I use the mild ones) not drained

1  can fire roasted diced tomatoes not drained

1 can Mexi corn  not drained

1 diced onion

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp chili powder

A couple of tablespoons of flour

1 /8 cup olive oil or just enough to cover the bottom of a skillet.

Salt and pepper to taste

(you could substitute chili mix or taco mix here. I wanted a less seasoned stew but a bit of flavor)

Cube meat into bite-sized pieces.  Shake in the flour, some salt and pepper until lightly coated. Cover the bottom of a skillet lightly with olive oil and brown meat.

While meat is browning, add the rest of the ingredients to a crockpot. Add Meat cook on high 4 hours.

This recipe makes a huge batch, great for a family. If its just two of you freeze half, then all you have to do the next week is thaw and warm. This stew is also rather thick. If you like a more liquidy stew, add a can of beef broth or a cup of water.

We didn’t have but about half a bowl left and I had that for lunch the next day. My husband and stepdaughter loved it  and would eat it again ( hubby asked me to make it again next week.) The oldest of the three grandies liked it. But it was a bit spicy for the two youngest though I think they liked it just not the tomatoes and onions as they ate the meat beans and corn out of this.

There are carbs in this from the tomatoes and beans (you could leave out the corn and add more beans), but there aren’t any added starches like potatoes or pasta.

I think next week I will make this with ground beef add a can of beef broth and make it like soup.

Do you have a go-to soup or stew you like on a cold winters day?

Cat’s Meow Winter Special~~A Christmas Accident by Melissa Keir

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Hi, Y’all! I hope you are enjoying the winter special.  This is the last post about Snow and winter. Next month we are moving on to Love and Valentines.  ‘You heard the adage in like a lamb out like a Lion I hope this story does that for you. Its has a gut-wrenching twist. But before we get into the story I asked Melissa 5 things she liked and disliked most about winter.

Melissa’s Five Least Favorite Things About Winter:

  1. Shoveling the Driveway: Each time it snows, we have to get quickly out and shovel the driveway, otherwise, ice forms on the concrete and walking become dangerous. I start out all bundled up because it’s cold but halfway through the driveway, I’m sweating. Snow likes to blow into my face, and all the lifting hurts my back. I try to think of it as good exercise but even with my small driveway, I’m grumbling and crabby by the time I’m done.
  2. The Cold: In Michigan and Ohio, we get our share of freezing temps. Many days, the temps fall below zero. Standing outside with the biting wind, chafes your face and chills you to your bones. I’m always cold anyway but during the winter, I can stand in a firepit and still not be warm.
  3. Holiday Weight Gain: With all the yummy foods from Halloween candy to Thanksgiving pies and finally candy and big dinners at Christmas, this time of year I always put on a few pounds. No matter how much I try to limit my eating, it’s hard to pass up the treats we only have during this time of year. Not to mention, the lack of exercise, being stuck in the house, and the shorter days…I try not to check my weight on the scale, but I always feel it in my clothes. *sigh* Maybe I’ll do better next year.
  4. Missing the Sun: Most days are overcast, dark and dreary. The days are so short. Even when the sun is out, it’s not the warm, wonderful sun of the summertime. The lack of sunshine impacts the body’s use of Vitamin D that can cause us to become worn down or even depressed. I used to go to the tanning salon during the winter to offset the depressing mood but tanning beds aren’t healthy either, so it became a catch-22. Darned if you do and darned if you don’t!
  5. Scraping the Windows: When you went into work that morning, the car was warm and cleared of snow but sometime while you were inside, the snow fell. Now your car is covered in snow and underneath the snow is the ice on the windows. As you brush off the snow, it blows into your face, crawls into your boots and coat sleeves, and yet there is always still a part of the windshield you can’t reach (or, at least, I can’t because I’m short). So you do your best, climb into the car and run the defroster on high. Push the button for washer fluid and hope that the wipers will push the last remaining ice and snow off your windows. And once you get on the road, the snow on the top of the car, falls on the back window, where you don’t have a wiper….now you are driving blind again. *yikes*
  6. Driving on the Icy Roads: Even with four-wheel drive, ice is treacherous. You don’t see the black ice and your car is all over the road. Route 2 in Northeast Ohio is horrible. It is called Death’s Highway because of how many accidents happen. One winter during an ice storm, I saw a stopped police car literally slide down the road. There wasn’t anyone behind the wheel and the car slid from the right side of the road down to the left side.

 

Well, there you have it. I hope that your winter is filled with fun times and none of the frustrations I’ve shared with you!

beautiful fantasy woman portrait

Title: A Christmas Accident

Author Melissa Keir

Pages: 40 pages

Genre: contemporary, holiday, M/f , short story

 

Expecting her first child, Sherri Wilder Davison wants nothing more than to spend time with her father over the holidays, but fate has a way of changing her best-laid plans.

Adam Davison is willing to do anything to make his pregnant wife happy. He will face hell to have her home for the holidays.

For Sherri and Adam, the holidays are a time of celebration and love, but this Christmas will be unlike any they have ever faced.

When a horrible blizzard causes an automobile accident that puts the lives of those Sherri loves on the line, can a Christmas miracle save them?

 

 

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MY REVIEW

I am not going to give a run down since he blurb says it all.
I will warn you to grab a box of tissues before you sit down with this story. It is short and heartwrenching. I cried and cried. I will say the story does have Christmas magic and even though it has some tragedy it does have a happy ending.

If you like a sweet story of true love, miracles, heart wrenching but a HEA this is a must read.

Here is a little more A Christmas Accident:

Adam bent down to kiss my belly, making my muscles clench. How does such a beefy man do that yet still look so masculine?

“Why don’t you also grab me some pretzels. I don’t know if the coffee will be good on my empty stomach. But with the way the snow has been falling, I want to make sure we can take the turnpike rather than Route 2.”

Route 2 is known as Death’s Highway. The area of Route 2 between Bono and Sandusky claimed dozens of lives due to the large semi-trucks in addition to the awkward two lane road. People couldn’t see what was coming around the next bend so head-on collisions were frequent. The horrible blizzard-like conditions from Lake Erie only made the road more treacherous.

After grabbing the coffee, pretzels and some crackers for myself, then paying for them, I headed back to the car. The snow made the car hard to see from the door of the gas station. Driving in this mess wasn’t a comforting thought.

“Adam, the weather looks really bad. Maybe we should turn on a local radio station to check on the road conditions.”

Making slow progress, we listened to the bleak weather bulletin. Little did we know one single radio announcement would change our lives forever.

“A crash has closed down part of the Ohio Turnpike just past the Route 53 exit. It’s recommended travelers take an alternate route.”

Adam’s voice sounded bleak as he responded to the news. “I guess we have to take Route 2, probably adding some time to our drive. Maybe you had better call Syn and tell her we’re still on our way but running late. We don’t want them to worry.” As he shifted the car into four-wheel drive, I pulled out my cell phone and made the call.

 

Book Trailer: https://youtu.be/5kMJ2sjyQQM

author pic

Melissa Keir has always wanted to be an author when she wasn’t hoping for a career as a race car driver.  Her love of books was instilled by her mother and grandparents who were avid readers. She’d often sneak books away from them so that she could fantasize about those strong alpha males and plucky heroines. In middle school and high school, Melissa used to write sappy love poems and shared them with her friends and still has those poems today! In college her writing changed to sarcastic musings on life as well as poems with a modern twist on fairy tales and won awards for her writing. You can find many of these musings along with her latest releases on her website and blog.

Melissa doesn’t believe in down time.  She’s always keeping busy. Melissa is a wife and mother, an elementary school teacher, a book reviewer, owner of a publishing company as well as an author. Her home blends two families and is a lot like the Brady Bunch, without Alice—a large grocery bill, tons of dirty dishes and a mound of laundry. She loves to write stories that feature happy endings and is often seen plotting her next story.

You can stalk—oops—follow Melissa:

Website and blog: http://www.melissakeir.com

Facebook author page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorMelissaKeir/

Facebook friend page: https://www.facebook.com/melissaakeir

Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/Melissa-Keir/e/B0078TCJX2/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1435145881&sr=8-2-ent

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/melissa_keir

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