Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Thursday Thirteen - 13 Easy V-Day Treats

With Valentine's Day just a few days away and several states under winter snow, we might have to get a bit creative with what we have on hand to prepare some treats without running to the store. 

 1. Make one giant sugar cookie and frost it with a special message. 

2. Dip Strawberries in Chocolate... better yet... dip anything in chocolate. 

  3. Make your own chocolate body paint. 

 4. Red wine and some pretty glassware. Be sure to know your honey's preference of dry or sweet. Menage a Trois produces some nice reds to coincide with your mood.

5. Cream puffs drizzled with dark chocolate. Both can be purchase from the store so you don't have to try to make it at home. Grab a can of whipping cream for...creativity.

6. Scalloped oysters. Toss with buttery crumbs and heavy cream and bake in individual ramekins. (Flyboy's favorite is the recipe from Taste of Home)

7. Serve tender beef fillet or small delicious steak with roasted red potatoes served with a red wine aged in bourbon barrels. (Check out Mawby's Bourbon Barrel Redd)

8. Make some red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting.

9. Chocolate and Kahlua Fondue. 
        500 ml double cream
        400 g dark chocolate, very finely chopped 
         250 ml Kahlua
         Assorted fresh fruit and/or desert biscotti, to serve 

 10. Frozen Peanut Butter Cups 

11. Make a pizza together from scratch. It can be a lot of fun and very sexy. 

 12. Buy a little hunk of dry ice from a local ice house. Put it in a bowl of water and place it on your serving tray. You'll create wondrous, billowing white clouds! 

 13. Ah...heck with it... just put a red bow on yourself and call it good! 

Be sure to check out  other Thursday Thirteen HERE!

Wednesday, January 31, 2024

#Thursday13 - First Lines of Hawk's Honor

 In honor of Hawk's Honor, Legend of the Spirit series book #3, being completed and sent to the publisher, I'm posting the first 13 lines.


Jamie Hawke is a Native American Chippewa from Michigan who is with a USMC Special Ops shifter unit. His country, his team is everything. This strong warrior holds honor above all. Being a hawk shifter on a Special Ops team is dangerous but falling in love with his commanding officer is deadly. Jamie is honor bound by the corps and won’t touch Captain Andrea “Andy” Nelson. After being wounded, Hawke is told by his shaman to find his mate before the next tour through Madame Eve’s 1 Night Stand service. When his date turns out to be no other than Capt. Nelson, he’s a dead man.

**************************

 “Corporal Hawke!”

Zipping his rucksack closed he slung it over his shoulder and stood. His Team Leader approached from across the moonlit yard while men in full battle rattle moved at a brisk pace around her. The Captain displayed the epitome of what every female marine should be…confidant, capable, with grace and style and a military bearing unmatched. Nevertheless, a female officer in special ops, much like shifters, in all reality didn’t exist.

 Native American shifters in MARSOC (Marine Special Operations Command) with security clearance such as his could select the battalion they wished to serve with. Hungry for adventure, he chose one of the riskiest regions and fell into a team who lost one of their Critical Skills Operators in battle. So deep in secrecy, only upper brass and the CIA knew of it, the group called Spirit Walkers contained several shifters.  They went into areas where the enemy had weeks to prepare, booby-trap, and plant enough explosives to eliminate a city block. Together with their fearless leaders, they out-smarted their opponent and completed whatever mission needed to be done.

 Sure, they lost a few to pay the price of war, but what blew his mind were the “routine” tasks completed without a single bullet fired. The teams moved like specters across landscapes and through villages. Night missions often included capturing or killing insurgents and recovering maps.  

****************

Thanks for reading!

Please enjoy other amazing #Thursday13 lists HERE

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

#TuesdayTeaser from Eagle Dance

Snow came in last night and reminded me of a scene in my book, Eagle Dance. 


“Let’s pick up the ‘za then head to the cabin.” He dropped the phone into a cup holder.

Not able to stop her mouth from speaking her thoughts in a matter-of-fact way. “We should pick up some chocolate or caramel syrup too.”

He blinked his sinfully long eyelashes and with his lips formed a slow smirk as the suggestion of her words set in. Leaning over the center counsel, he cupped her cheek with one large hand. His eyes bore into hers with intensity.

“Your wish is my command.” He took her mouth in a searing kiss which ended too soon. “You got something planned for dessert?”

“Maybe.” She played coy.

He flashed perfect teeth in a full grin while he turned up the heat in the truck then put it into gear. The goatee on his chin and dark brows gave him a devilish appearance and when he smiled she ached to climb all over him. A wild night with a handsome Indian is what she requested but received much more.

 The truck jerked, turning her attention to the storm. Working his way along the precarious road, the vehicle lurched and a dream catcher swayed from the review mirror. Gems stitched into the web reflected small facets of light, giving her a distraction from her fear of crashing into a tree along the road.


***************************
Dyami Schafer, a Native American from the Chippewa tribe, leads a lonely life due to his large size and unusual appearance. When his nesting instinct sets in, he turns to Madame Eve and 1Night Stand to help him find his spirit mate. Or at least a woman who accepts him as an eagle shifter.

Amanda Collins never stopped loving the Chippewa boy she knew from her childhood. Maybe a night with a Native American man will help her forget the past and let her move on with her life.

Sometimes, it’s necessary to take a step into the past before dancing into the future. With the help of Madame Eve, will the Spirit of the Eagle carry Dyami and Amanda?


AVAILABLE AT: 












Monday, January 29, 2024

A Hallmark Moment

During the holiday season I watched Hallmark movies when I had the house to myself. I noticed how a character would bundle up and take his or her morning coffee onto a deck or porch for moment of quiet contemplation. No words spoken, but the scene placed a pivotal point in the character's development. Flyboy would say it is just a pretty scene. 


Today, I decided to have my moment. I slid on a flannel jacket and my Hey Dudes to venture onto the porch with a steaming cup of joe. After all, it's a warm 32 degrees outside.



Quiet contemplation?

Not really. The coffee cooled before I could enjoy it and I lost feeling in my fingers. 

Reyka enjoyed her moment  though.

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Friday, January 26, 2024

Tasty Teaser from Hawk's Honor (draft)

I'm just about finished with my own edits and then the book heads off to the publisher. I figured it would be fun to share a little bit of the draft with readers. The following is the first half of the first chapter. I was lucky enough to have a couple Marine pals to answer my kazillion questions and read over my work. Thank you, Whiskey Rick!
Enjoy!


 

Chapter 1

 “Corporal Hawke!”

Zipping his rucksack closed he slung it over his shoulder and stood. His Team Leader approached from across the moonlit yard while men in full battle rattle moved at a brisk pace around her. The Captain displayed the epitome of what every female marine should be…confidant, capable, with grace and style and a military bearing unmatched. Nevertheless, a female officer in special ops, much like shifters, in all reality didn’t exist.

 Native American shifters in MARSOC (Marine Special Operations Command) with security clearance such as his could select the battalion they wished to serve with. Hungry for adventure, he chose one of the riskiest regions and fell into a team who lost one of their Critical Skills Operators in battle. So deep in secrecy, only upper brass and the CIA knew of the group called Spirit Walkers containing several shifters. They went into areas where the enemy had weeks to prepare, booby-trap, and plant enough explosives to eliminate a city block. Together with their fearless leaders, they outsmarted their opponent and completed whatever mission needed to be done.

 Sure, they lost a few to pay the price of war, but what blew his mind were the “routine” tasks completed without a single bullet fired. The teams moved like specters across landscapes and through villages. Night missions often included quietly capturing or killing insurgents and recovering maps.  Day assignments centered on collecting intelligence used to save American and allies asses. Accomplish without leaving any trace. Convinced spirits, ghosts, demons or their own negligence were at work, the enemy never discovered the truth.

Close friendships developed during savage urban battles and intelligent tactical maneuvers. Over the last six and a half months brotherhoods were forged and interesting people met, but the one walking in his direction captivated him. Capt. Andrea “Andy” Nelson wore her shoulder-length blonde hair pulled tight in a bun exposing a naturally beautiful face. She took the typical dominant male bullshit from the guys in stride, often putting them on their asses with a well said verbal jab or one of her many martial arts moves. At any given time, she could flash an icy glare capable of breaking even the most hardened soldiers. Born and raised by a career Marine with two brothers also in the Corps, a beast of a Marine held her own against anyone.

Some of the guys in the unit found her intimidating. Stories about her brothers and father were often recounted during card games, but her experience on the battlefield made men pay attention. Her strategy of well planned and executed operations as well as her calm voice of reason earned their respect and kept them in line. True to the life of a Marine, she pushed everyone to give more than a hundred percent and continue onto the next order.  Always faithful, always forward was their motto. She lived it.

He would readily give his life for her, not only because of her reputation and being a fellow Marine but he saw her as something more. Shortly after being assigned to the unit, his animal spirit declared her as a mate. Other than personal relationships being prohibited between ranks, she had a fiancĂ© back in the states. A giant invisible OFF-LIMITS sign hung over her head like a cloud but his critter didn’t give a damn. Every day became a clash fight with the beast and his heart as he fell in love with her, but he continued to maintain complete control. Being honor bound to the corps he never acted on his emotions. To do so could get someone killed. Instead, he vowed to always protect her the same way he would his brothers in arms and keep his secret from ever being exposed.

“Capt. Nelson.” He gave a quick snap salute.

“Screw the formalities, Hawke.” She stopped next to him and accepted his pistol from the low leg holster for a quick inspection. “This is your last operation. You’ve been kicking a lot of ass around here; you deserve a break. As soon as it’s done your team heads back to base then home. I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward sleeping somewhere I don’t have to check for spiders and can fucking eat chocolate chip cookies whenever I want.”

“Hey, I warned you about Dawg’s and my stealth missions to confiscate any boxes from home a marine doesn’t share.”  Rolling his shoulders, he gave a low chuckle when her jaw twitched. “Yeah, yeah…I know. Never take a woman’s chocolate. Lesson learned, Nelson.”

“Damned straight. Out of all the shifters, I get stuck with a lock picking bird and a chocoholic wolf.” A rare smile flashed but quickly disappeared. “The next team coming is minus their captain for three months and brass chose me to fill in for him. You asswipes better have fun tipping back beers while I’m trapped in this hell hole a little longer.”

“How ‘bout I send you a nice heart-shaped box of chocolate from home?” He made a mental note to send something as a joke.

“Fuck you.” She snorted.

His cock twitched at the sight of his Glock 19 in her capable hands. A woman who knew her way around firearms lit his wick. Being the only daughter of a Master Gunnery Sergeant, she knew more than most. Hell, she was probably born with a gun in her hand.

“Are you sure you don’t want me to strap this to your bird?”

“Packing heat slows me down.” He shook his head. “I can shift in and out of clothes faster without the baggage. A simple in and out is my plan.”

 “But we all know shit happens.” She flashed him a sideways glance. “What about the night vision gear?”

“Nope. I have my earpiece. Dawg will talk me through.” He lowered his voice to prove his point.  “No extra equipment. It’s my call.”

Carefully shadowing his gaze, he took in her appearance. Her 5-foot 5-inch frame looked far from feminine in her baggy cammies and boots. A loose camo jacket exposed the drab olive-green t-shirt underneath.  He imagined her dog tags tucked neatly between her breasts. He could easily lose his mind if it followed the direction of his eyes. Focus shithead, you’ve got a job to do.

“Dawg and Skeeter are in position on the hill to watch from above. You have two four-man fireteams who will have your back; you’ll see them at nine and two as you fly in. They will go in for a sweep after the first detonation. Remember the doors are heavily guarded or booby-trapped.”

“Fun facts already planted.” he tapped his skull. “I found everything during the last couple nights of sneaking in to set the explosives. I know every inch of the structure.”

“Fine, then all you have to do is fly in through the northeast window, ignite and get the hell out.” She slapped the gun into his open palm. “Are you ready?”

 “My people believe the hawk is a messenger.” Tucking his gun into the sack a snarl escaped his lips. “And tonight, I will deliver one final message to these bastards. Fuck, it’ll light up like the fourth of July.” He glanced in the direction he would be flying, lifted his hand and splayed his fingers imitating a firework blast. “Boom!”

“I think you enjoy being a Crusher too much. You could make a career of it.”

“Hey, what can I say?” He shrugged. “I like to blow shit up.”

 “For the record, I don’t like sending a Marine unarmed.” She shook her head, obviously unhappy with his decision not to carry. “You will be covered until you pass over the courtyard wall. Hustle your feathered ass back to collect your pack and join the Chief and me.”  

“We’ve been over this a million times already. I’m good.” He handed the sack to her then lifted M4 rifle from its sling across his chest. “I’ll be back before you have a chance to miss me.”

A shadow passed over her face as she accepted his equipment. Usually, she wished him well then threw a wise crack his way before he shifted for a mission, this time her eyes looked at the ground. The action disconcerted him. Wanting to get away from the negative vibe, he stepped back.

“Hey, I just wanted to say it’s been a privilege serving with you.” The timber of her voice stopped him from walking away. “When I was a kid, my dad told some crazy bedtime stories about his days with shifter Marines. He made them sound like fantasy, but I knew they were true. I always believed in shifters. Over the years, I’ve served with many and commanded a few. But you…you’re different.” Her voice grew tender and she touched his forearm. Heat spread up his arm rousing his spirit. “It’s been an amazing experience seeing you transform and do all the things you do.”

“Aw, come on, Nelson; don’t go all soft on me.” He fought the urge to pull her into his arms and kiss the lines of stress off her face. His honor beat down the pleading of his spirit. “I’m gonna start thinking you’re a girl or something.”

“Seriously, Hawke, I just needed to say it. I think you are a brave and honorable man. There are many like you.” She skimmed her hand down his arm to give his fist a squeeze. “I just have a feeling…I don’t know.” Shaking her head, she blinked then captured his gaze. “I just wanted you to know in case I don’t see you again.”

“Get rid of that vibe or whatever it is…don’t be placing bad juju on me.” He waved his hands around. “Everything is going to be okay. You’ve got the best team and this is a piece of cake.” Something sure had her spooked. Dipping his head close to hers, he whispered. “Thanks, Andy. Coming from you means a lot, but you’re distracting me and you know how I am superstitious about keeping my routine before rolling out. You’ll knock me off my game.”

“Sorry.” A faint rose colored her checks, something he’d never seen. She shook her head and the familiar stern battle face quickly replaced the softness. “Let’s see some kick ass fireworks, marine!”

“That’s better.” He laughed, ripped off his t-shirt and flung it over her shoulder. “Here comes the boom!”

 “Oh and another thing…” She jabbed a finger at his chest. “Make sure your feathered ass comes back, dill weed.”

“Ooorah! I will. I always do. On my honor.” He crossed his heart and winked at her before shifting into his hawk form and heading off to his target.

Sneezes & Orgasms

Statistics show fewer people are getting colds due to taking preventative measures and being mindful of their health. 
However, some folks are complaining their allergies have worsened.

Did you know...
 a change in temperature can make you sneeze?
But then again, sometimes we seem to sneeze for no reason.



DID YOU KNOW...

 Sneezes, along with orgasms, are the only physiological responses that cannot be voluntarily stopped once they have started.

Thursday, January 25, 2024

#Thursday13 - Lines from Eagle Dance

Eagle Dance is the 2nd book in the Legend of the Spirit series. 


Here are a few quotes and lines from the first two chapters.

Thursday 13 –from first two chapters of Eagle Dance.

1. “I’m six feet tall, and no, I am not a model.” She rolled her eyes. “I get asked that all the time, and I hate it. I’m sorry for sounding like a goofy teenager.”

2. When she took his hand in hers, much like a fortune-teller reading his palm, warm waves of magic traveled up his arm.

3. “The dude has way too much energy.” He leaned toward her. Her light, spicy fragrance tickled his nostrils again. Hmm…delicious, better than coffee. “I’ll bet they have an espresso machine in their break room.”

4. “You say it like Dee-aww-mee.” Dyami enunciated slowly.

5. The battle in his mind claimed ultimate victory with the realization his date would be with the long-legged temptress before him.

6. She tasted better than a sugary cinnamon pastry, and he hungered for more.

7. Definitely one delicious piece of man candy she couldn’t wait to unwrap.

8. “Yeah, wow.” Grabbing his jacket, she jerked him close again and planted another quick kiss on his mouth. “So, are you going to call for that pizza, or am I?”

 9. If he had washboard abs, she’d jump at the chance to lick thick, warm chocolate-fudge topping off them.
10. She spoke matter-of-factly. “We should pick up some chocolate or caramel syrup, too.”

11. “What do you see when you look at me?” he asked and lowered his eyes.

12. The goatee on his chin, and the dark brows, gave him a devilish appearance and, when he smiled, she ached to climb all over him.

13. Dyami moved in behind her and, without a word, seized her waist, joining her rocking movement in time with the music, his body radiating warmth.


Dyami Schafer, a Native American from the Chippewa tribe, leads a lonely life due to his large size and unusual appearance. When his nesting instinct sets in, he turns to Madame Eve and 1Night Stand to help him find his spirit mate. Or at least a woman who accepts him as an eagle shifter.


Amanda Collins never stopped loving the Chippewa boy she knew from her childhood. Maybe a night with a Native American man will help her forget the past and let her move on with her life.

Sometimes, it’s necessary to take a step into the past before dancing into the future. With the help of Madame Eve, will the Spirit of the Eagle carry Dyami and Amanda?




 Check out other great writers and their Thursday 13 

If you have a Thursday 13 list, 
share the link in the comments below.


Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Romance in the Laundry Room

 Boy meets girl in the basement laundry of the apartment building. They fall in love. 

Or depending on which genre you enjoy...they could be banging on the sorting table.

Sounds a bit cliché doesn't it. I'm sure it happens though, but not in my world. At one point I had three boys at home, all playing school football AND I washed one of the team's jerseys every week. Talk about a mountain of stinky laundry.


So where does romance come in? 


Get your honey to help sort, fold, and put away laundry. Pour an adult beverage. Put on your favorite music. Have a little fun. 

Beware of voyeurs such as a cat in a basket.

What's it like at my house these days? 

You might me stacking neatly folded, warm towels with Flyboy's hands on my hips as I sway to the rhythm of the music. His breath tickling the back of my neck as he places kisses upon my neck.


You get the picture.


Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Tasty Tuesday - Hot Cocoa

Nothing is better that enjoying a cup of hot chocolate on a cold day. 
This year I wanted to create a homemade powder recipe instead of relying on store bought hot cocoa mixes. After trial and error, (and wonderful friends who volunteered to taste samples). I found one that was perfect.

Homemade Hot Cocoa Mix
2 cups powdered sugar
1 cup cocoa (Dutch-processed is preferred for those who like dark chocolate and making mocha. Most preferred using 1/2 Dark and 1/2 regular)
2 1/2 cups or 15oz powdered non-dairy creamer (use a flavored one for fun)
1tsp ground chia
1tsp salt
2tsp cornstarch 

Blend with whisk in large bowl. Store in a cute jar or sealed plastic bag.

Place 3 scoops of mix in a mug then add hot water or hot milk. Stir.

For an "adult beverage" add a shot of cherry liquor or peppermint schnapps. 

Place 1 scoop in a mug then add coffee to make a mocha.

ENJOY!!!