Monday, November 23, 2020

Tips For Autumn Romance

 Fall is a beautiful time of year here in Michigan. I love the incredible palate of colorful trees and shrubbery. Nature’s pure fragrance of leaves and earth as well as the temptations of pumpkin pie, baked apples, and hot mulled cider create a wonderful setting. This time of year is also the time to pull out the winter woolies and time for some old fashion cuddling. It is a time for Autumn Romance.

 >Plan a special morning. Romance isn’t just for nighttime. Make a special breakfast using flavors of the turnovers, cinnamon rolls, pumpkin bread to name a few. Add a little pumpkin spice creamer to your coffee. Try in it cocoa!

 >  Rake a pile of leaves and yes…. Jump in!  It’s not just for kids.  Let your hair down and play!  Laughing is great foreplay.

>  Hit the trails. Go for a walk holding hands or a nice bike ride. Stop periodically to enjoy the view. This is a great way to stay in shape and relieve tension as well as giving you a chance to talk.  However, if you come to a hill… I dare you to roll down it!

> Enjoy the patio at night and build a bonfire for two. Curl up together under a blanket and sip a cup of hot apple cider.

> Have a night in and start up your fireplace. Slip into something sexy. Pour your favorite wine and play your favorite love songs.

> Make time to simply sit and share a drink together. Try a spiced wine or an apple whiskey.

Leelanau Cellars
has a variety of wines perfect for Autumn.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Take Time for Romance

Can couples find the time and energy for romance 
and still cope with commitments, tress, and even fatigue?  


"Being over-scheduled is the biggest killer of romance, because when we're tired and frazzled we have nothing left for each other." - D.P. Washington

Flyboy and I goofing around.

Establish priorities and set goals by making better use of the time they have by creating time they thought they didn't have.

*Make a lunch date together

*Take a shower or bath together

*Make time for pillow talk

* Set aside one night a week - no interruptions, no appointments

*Plan your weekends in advance - put them on your calendar in ink

*Take control of your time - unplug the electronics

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

#Thursday13 - Being Friends with a Writer

This post is dedicated to my poor friends who know me so well and still love me. 

My "Coffee Club" gals keep me sane. Love 'em all!

Regarding anyone who will meet me or has recently become acquainted with a writer,
 really needs to read this.

1. It's not that I'm anti-social. It's just that I'm currently writing at least three books in my head. It's hard to mentally outline and talk at the same time.

2. I'm not staring at your ear because I'm a stalker with a weird fetish. You just did something that gave me an idea for my WIP.

3. I'm not talking to myself. I'm PLOTTING.

4. I'm a grammar Nazi and you just slipped up. Yes…it will eat at me FOR HOURS.

5. Please don't reference any mainstream, highly successful novels unless you know for sure that they are free of typos and weak writing. And make sure there are no adverbs in it. Otherwise, you'll set off a literary hissy fit of epic proportions.

6. DO NOT talk to my about 50 Shades of Grey. See #5. If you insist on asking me, I'll tell you. Ad nauseum. 


8. Yes, I'm neurotic. I'm a writer, duh. When have you ever met a sane writer?

9. Meet my delicate artist ego. Stroke it. Praise it. It will purr for you. Then it will cry. Then it will accuse you of being disingenuous. Then it will tell you to go to hell. Then it will beg you to like it. Then it will be aloof. Then it will curl itself into the fetal position and suck its thumb until you stroke it again.

10. Give me wine and chocolate. Whatever you said or did will be forgiven. I will name a character after you. I will dedicate my next book to your awesomeness.

11. Piss me off, I’ll put you in my book and kill you or at least mess you up real good. (Insert evil laugh). If you are really my friend, you’ll do #10.

12. Yes, I write erotic romance and you want to know what about my personal life? Grab a bottle and we’ll talk. *wink, wink*

13.  Don't ask where I get my story ideas. How the crap should I know? It's not like I have a storage locker. Brain Farts, maybe or just simply and  highly overactive imagination.

My oldest friends keep me crazy.

(Yes, this is borrowed.  I don't have a clue where it came from...just found it in a saved file on my trusty laptop. But it is soooo me!)

Check out some amazing #Thursday13 lists from some of my writer friends. 

Romantic Bird Watching

Watching backyard birds can be relaxing and romantic. Slow down in life and smell the roses, or rather, watch the birds. Watching the activity with your honey can be romantic; you are spending time together chatting or simply being

My mom loved birds. Dad made special feeders for her to fill and she'd watch her feathered friends daily. My boys have been raised enjoying the fun that comes with having feeders. We call them Feeding Stations since they are designated to hold certain food/seed combinations to attract particular critters. Living in the woods has provided us with unlimited visitors.

Son #3 and I filled the feeding stations as the first snow began to fall. It didn't take long for the critters to arrive.
A Chickadee and finch come in for breakfast.

A blue-jay decides which seed feeder he wants to visit.

Tufted Titmouse is just hanging around.

A Tufted Tit and Finch wait their turn.

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Good Morning, Cast Iron and Kisses

After grabbing the first cup of coffee, start the day right by making breakfast together.

I cook with beloved cast iron pans and tips from Gram. She told me of an easy and simple meal to prepare with your honey.

Begin cooking grits before everything else because slow cooking is better. I like to add smoked salt and half n half  to mine.

Drop a dollop of bacon fat into a warm pan. Add a variety of vegitables. Let cook for a couple of minutes. Season - we use a New Orleans flavor.

 Add a precooked meat (or may be served as a side). Whip an egg with half n half then pour onto veggies. Lower temp and cover. Add cheese. When cheese has melted and egg is cooked, cut into pieces and serve ontop of hot grits in a bowl. 
While doing food prep with your honey, enjoy sipping coffee, sample the fresh veggies, and maybe nibble on each other.

 Enjoy your morning!

Sunday, November 15, 2020

Monday Mojo - Spirit of the Crow

Seth Crowe, a crow shifter and Keeper of the Spiritual Law.
He considers himself to be a carrier of souls from darkness to light and enjoys using his body to accomplish his magic. 

Seth is a Native American Crow shifter.

The crow is a spirit animal associated with life mysteries and magic.  The power of this bird as totem and spirit guide is provide insight and means of supporting intentions. Sign of luck, it is also associated with the archetype of the trickster; be aware of deceiving appearances.  If the crow has chosen you as your spirit or totem animal, it supports you in developing the power of sight, transformation, and connection with life’s magic.
The crow knows the unknowable mysteries of creation and is the keep of all sacred law. The medicine he practices gives him mastery of illusion. It is the power of the unknown at work, and always guarantees something special is about to happen.

The crow is also the guardian of ceremonial magic and healing. In any healing circle, a Crow is present. He guides the magic of healing and the change in consciousness that will bring about a new reality. The crow can give you the courage to enter the darkness of the void, which is the home of all that is not yet in form.

Read CROW MAGIC to learn about Seth's magical power.

Saturday, November 14, 2020

Grandma's Chicken Soup

When Mom would get sick, Grandma would move in with her homemade chicken soup and cure the entire household from the common cold. Ironically, studies show that Gram was right. Chicken soup really can help you get over a cold! Those miserable symptoms of the cold usually include coughing, sneezing, and a stuffy nose. Actual university studies have proven ingredients in chicken soup have anti-inflammatory properties that inhibit certain white blood cells from traveling into airways that contribute to the inflammation that causes cold symptoms. Chicken soup contains compounds that also help inhibit mucus production. In addition to the soup's anti-inflammatory effects, the heat and steam may help open nasal passages especially if you add some garlic or cayenne pepper! Always drink the broth, researchers determined most of the help comes from the liquid. 

  Here's Grandma's recipe
3-4 lb stewing chicken 
1 onion 
2 -3 qts water 
1 Tbsp chopped parsley 
1/2 tsp salt, dash pepper 
1 Tbsp butter 
1/2 cup diced celery 
1/4 cup diced carrots 
2 cups noodles or 1/4 cup rice 

Heat to boiling then simmer until meat is tender. Gram would simmer hers all day. She also said you could always add lemon juice to "help cut a thick throat" or garlic for a stuffed up nose. 
Grandam always thought ahead and would prepare batches of soup so she'd be ready at a moment's notice to aid her ailing family. 

Thursday, November 12, 2020

The Magic of Crows

  "The crow represents change or transformation. But much more than that, it refers more to a spiritual or emotional change. These intelligent birds give us valuable insight into situations around us and help us adapt as needed". - Crow Symbolism & Meaning

I grew up listening to legends and tales of animals from a neighbor who was a member of the local Chippewa tribe. The intelligence as well as the beauty of the crow always drew me in. Perhaps the attraction led me to write Crow Magic, where the hero is a Native American Crow Shifter. He uses his body and mind to cleanse a person’s soul; taking it from darkness to light.

Available on Amazon 

 Some cultures think of the crow as a bad omen. It has been said this idea came from the wars during the Dark Ages when crows would be seen after a battle picking at the dead. The Vikings believed it was the spirit of a raven that escorted the souls of the dead warriors to Valhalla. Story tellers simply put a dark spin on the tale.

The Native Americans consider a crow to be a sign of good fortune. Crows are cleansers of both the land and the mind. My Chippewa friends hold steadfast to this belief and always express joy when they see crows visit their feeders.

Since moving into the woods, we've attracted a variety of critters. For several years we were blessed with a family of crows. Seeing their antics and family dynamic up close was amazing. The hawks moved in for a couple years chasing the small murder away. However, the hawks moved out and by fall the crows were cautiously returning.

This spring brought two handsome couples into my office view. My building is located along the Flint River. A pair of eagles nest not far from here as well, but they haven't disturbed the crows. I'm not sure where the crows roost, but they come to our yard to feed. 

Do you have some unique critters visit your yard?

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

#Thursday13 - Autumn Date Ideas

I love FALL.  Everything about the season is wonderful! Acorn squash smothered with butter and brown sugar cooks in the stove while a hot apple pie cools. Burning leaves and then enjoying a glass of wine with friends. Here are a few ideas for you and your honey to have some time to yourselves.

1. Visit a local orchard or pumpkin patch.

2. Go apple picking then make caramel apples.

3. Bake an apple or pumpkin pie together then eat it before it gets cold. Have fun with the left over whipping cream. Enjoy a glass of local wine or brew.

4. Find your inner child and go on a corn maze and hayride. Rake leaves into a pile and jump in!

5. Make Apple Cider Floats and snuggle in front of a fire.

Apple Cider Float

1 cup of real apple cider
½ cup ginger ale
1-2 scoops vanilla ice cream or a seasonal flavor such as cinnamon or apple pie
Ground cinnamon and nutmeg for sprinkling

1-2 TBSP caramel sauce

Pour apple cider and ginger ale into a glass. Add vanilla ice cream. Sprinkle on nutmeg and cinnamon to taste and drizzle caramel sauce on top. Serve with straw and spoon.


6. If you are in a warmer climate, take your lap top and a bowl of popcorn to the backyard and watch a movie.

7. Have a thermos picnic at the park. Pack soup and hot cocoa.

8. Go on a Fall Foliage Drive. Pick up some pumpkin spice coffee and enjoy the ride.

9. Visit a local book store. Many offer special autumn displays and events.

10. Hop in the car and go for a drive to find a coffee shop or a local pub to visit.

11. Go on a Sunset Date. Grab a thermos of cocoa and a blanket then head off to a park to watch the sunset. If a park isn't in the cards, simply step onto your porch or back deck.  Weather permitting, do some star gazing too. Super romantic!

12. Have a “Power Outage” Date. Turn all the lights off, light some candles and have some fun.

13. Try a Spa Night. Take a bath together, give each other massages and put on your comfy-cozies.

What word do you use to describe this season? Autumn or Fall?

Click HERE for more super cool Thursday 13 lists.

Don't Throw Away Old Canning Jars

Fall is the time when many folks can produce collected from their gardens. When I had a big garden, I canned salsa and tomato sauce. I shared an extremely large collection of canning jars with my neighbor. The jars ranged in shape and size; some were even considered antique! (Look for colored Ball or Mason jars at yard sales!) Now that I live in the woods, my canning days are gone. However, instead of throwing out all those wonderful canning jars, I found a new use for them. Candles! I love the jars with some cut or pattern to them. Pick up some candle inserts that hold tea lights(I find mine at craft shops for around .40 each). Gently place the insert into a narrow mouth jar. I like to add items to the jar... changing with the season or my mood. If you are crafty, paint the jar before adding the insert. These make wonderful gifts! Take the larger sized, wide mouth jars - place a little sand or dirt on the bottom of the inside then add a brightly colored candle. I use a three of different heights placed on a silver tray with greens and metallic balls or ribbon as a decoration on my porch for the holidays. When they are lit, I find them to be very warm and welcoming to my guests. Get creative and have a great week!