The Aftermath

posted in: CRAFTS, DIY, FOODS, HOLIDAYS, SEASONS | 3

I’m dressed in my Ninja black, sweater and sweat pants, at my desk and starting to catch up in The Aftermath.

We had quite the season, but I’ve never been one for a show of abundance, rather simplicity. This wreath and a ceramic Santa Claus with candles is all I have to take down/put away.

Family visited and the young boys and I crocheted. One really went to town with a Tunisian hook, which is my favorite, too. He is 11. The 6-year old “loomed” with another daughter. I needed a scarf, so this one is almost done. According to The Judge, it needs to be long enough to start at the waist, wrap around your neck and hang down to your waist. I’m just crocheting to the end of the ball.

We had a cheeseball competition. The judge isn’t declaring winners, because she doesn’t want to lose her cheeseball “abundancy” with chips. She was into the refrigerator, prior to our pasta dinner. The butcher here has great Italian sausage, perfect for browning and sauce.

Here’s my 2-cheeseball recipe: 4 cartons cream cheese, carton sour cream, carton blue cheese, handful of shredded cheddar, 2 handfuls of mixed colby etc., sprinkle of garlic power, dash salt (next year I’ll use parmesan in lieu of salt), worchestire, and after forming and chilling overnight, pat ball with pecans. The judge said I needed to cut the pecans smaller, but that certainly did not slow her down.

That daughter loaded up on my Denver biscuits, a recipe from the miner’s Pike Peak’s days. (It’s really a potato roll.) I made 4 tons of that, 1 ton for her to take home, a bread bowl of dough for another daughter. The recipe is good for a refrigerator roll, to take out as needed, and sometimes I take just the dough to neighbors’, so they can make hot rolls for breakfast. Always a hit with real butter.

Note: Leggos are no fun to step on.

I’ve just sent book 1 of a new series to my beta readers and hope they like it. JUST YOU is in the works and soon for pre-order. JUST LOVE book 2 is being edited. I usually print out the mss and red ink the edits before sending on. A screen edit is ok to a point, but hand editing, away from distractions is best for me. Then correct, and go over.

I am absolutely thrilled with the reception of THE ROSE BASKET: NOVELLA now on sale in ebook and print.

And I’ll finish my scarf tonight… All in all a good holiday and I am back to work now. I hope you had a good holiday, too, complete with family/friends.

 

Time for Thoughts

posted in: FOODS, HOLIDAYS, REFLECTIONS, SEASONS, writing | 1

Like everyone else, I’m deep into the holidays and the end of the year whatevers. I’ve just had a little renovation, which put me behind, but then, I’m always behind, aren’t you?

At the end of the year, I think back to days of yore. Huh. Cannot remember how many quarts of green beans I’ve canned from a huge garden. I canned everything in sight, just like my mother, who was lucky enough to have plenty of trout, salmon, steelhead, etc. to can. Her panty was a thing of beauty, all organized, fruits/jams/meats/whatever. And yes, since we are German descent, jars of kraut. She stopped crocks years before that and made kraut in jars. I did the jar-method, too, but no longer doing any of that. I miss Mom.

My stack of crocheted dishcloths is going out the door/mail as gifts. I make lots of mistakes, but people seem to like them anyway. This year I found a new InstaPot delivered to my porch, thanks to one daughter who has 4 children and works and is mad about the fast convenience. Mm. We’ll see, she says…

I‘ve just sent out notice to my beta readers about a first book of a series, and I long to edit the 2nd. The holiday time-crunch is upon me, however, and I need clear thinking room for the edit. I truly hope they love it. So a new series in 2018, along with more Tallchiefs in that series. Talk about writing plans!

For a limited time, His Christmas Present, a 2-fer, and The Rose Basket: Novella are on sale for .99. The Rose Basket: Novella is a romance-humor story also in paper and makes a nifty gift. Because it’s short, my sister is enthused.

At the end of the year, that precious space in which to reflect, you’ll hear more of my stuff, like how I polish antique furniture and burn candles and generally think about the past and the future. It’s a really important time for me and I hope you, too.

But for now, I’d better get busy. Take time for these reflections and yourself, will you?

My Life Today

posted in: CRAFTS, FOODS, HOLIDAYS, SEASONS | 0

While I’m waiting for my meatloaf to finally be ready, I’m thinking about the holidays and how I feel, and the general roll of my life. It’s a huge meatloaf to give to a college student headed into finals.

My basic meatloaf recipe is whatever: hamburger, oatmeal, diced tomatores, eggs, onions, green pepper, Worcestershire. Bake. Top with mixture of catsup/chili powder, spread over meatloaf, bake more.

Aren’t these presents pretty? My daughter is an excellent “wrapper”. I loved the wrapping job more than the actual presents. I’m not a Christmas decorator, table-gorgeous sort of a girl. I’m a low-abundance Christmas person, rather enjoy giving whatever is useful and this year, more of those colored dishcloths I make during stress times. They are what they are, mistakes and all. And I truly do not enjoy weaving in the ends, so I don’t and now I’m looking at a mountain of dishcloths that need the ends woven in. I also bake, but not so enthused this year.

We were supposed to have a yard sale last spring that may or may not ever happen. Periodically, I have to go dig out something from it, i.e. soon some Christmas greenery. Reclaiming my own yard sale stuff, do you ever do that?

My newsletter will be coming out soon and you may wish to SUBSCRIBE to it. I am hoping that people will enjoy my new novella (because I enjoyed writing it so much), THE ROSE BASKET.

I’m also planning to make potstickers for chicken soup, freeze and give as gifts. I usually make those during a good movie. Lately, I’ve been on a series binge and really, really loved Offspring, set in Australia, about a woman obstetrician, her offbeat family and friends. I need to write a piece for writers on that show as it is well constructed character-wise, cliff-hangers, etc. Very well developed, sometimes humorous or life-serious. Gunsmoke series was terrific, so far as cast and stories. There are some horrible, poorly done westerns on TV now; just wish they’d go away.

The Longest Dayย movie with John Wayne was spellbinding. Not only the story line, but the amazing number of real stars and pop singers of the era featured. A young Sean Connery.

My meatloaf and baked potatoes are ready to take out of the oven. Better go.

Big Plans Today

posted in: HOLIDAYS, SEASONS | 0

I absolutely love fall color in the Ozarks. We have many visitors to the hills in the spring to see the white dogwood blooms and in the fall to see the fiery color. This is my favorite tree outside my window. It held baby robins early in the spring, and when the wind blows, I can tell generally how much by the flutter of the leaves.

One daughter who lives in California wanted to see pictures of the fall, so I sent this one.

I’m editing heavily now, sitting a lot, too much, and with the new stats on blood pressure lowered, I’m working not to be on the 46% of Americans with high blood pressure. Sitting is not good for blood pressure. However, I have not been able to write while pedalling or standing. I’m a formal, sit-up-straight desk-writer.

But Fall/Winter/coming holidays–and I am one of those who waits until Thanksgiving is over before starting on Christmas–I start laying out projects. (As if I don’t have enough already.)

My plan today is to organize this box of exercise equipment, resistance bands and weights for some indoor work. These resistance bands are unused, stored under a bed, except for one which I use and sometimes pack for trips. I also use a small ball with sand in it by my desk and a body ball for a workout on the floor. I like both. The sand-ball is easier on hard-working hands. It’s bigger, so a less tighter grip.

Again, the resistance bands have been stored. Today is the day for working with the instructions and the other bands. You’ll notice that the wrappers are still on the 5 pound weights. I use the smaller ones. The DVD instruction video with a small woman bouncing around with the 5 lb weights defeated me.

My similar to a recumbant bike machine is stored in the garage. I like that in hard winter.

We’ll see….

Summer Delights

To date, we’ve had a cool summer, with lots of rain. I’m not a sun/heat person, so I’m enjoying it. So are my herbs, especially the chives, cilantro, and basil. I am hoping they will grow inside this winter.

My front porch and back patio will grow anything and the herbs are responding nicely. I haven’t planted the lavender yet, but did take a start up to my neighbor, who also enjoys puttering/potting, etc. Love lavender and use the essential oil in my burner. I need to do that now, while writing…. If you haven’t gotten into essential oils, try them for different uses.

On the Fourth of July, while enjoying the neighborhood’s fireworks, I “burned” eucalyptus on my porch and the mosquitoes didn’t like it.

Yesterday, I snapped this huge bush. Gorgeous, isn’t it? How nice of it to bloom in my favorite colors.

 

As for writing, amazingly my 2nd book of the year in a new romance series is coming into the home stretch. Lots of editing needed, but the book is almost done. Am so hoping to get book 3 done also. That’s questionable right now, because we are amid getting the Tallchiefs back into print. The Cowboy and the Cradle will soon be in paper as well the rest. Am so pleased that people remember them and still love them. (My daughter gave me that handmade walnut cradle on the cover, btw. and that is my garnet ring on Tallchief’s Bride.) Do watch for more Tallchiefs to turn up?

 

 

 

http://caitlondon.com/tallchiefs/

 

Nature’s Sweethearts

posted in: HOLIDAYS, MY BOOKS, writing | 2

I’m busy with Valentine’s Day and generally writing, working with ads, etc. But when I can, I walk along the lake and enjoy the waterfowl. Most of all, I admire the Canadian geese, and I think ours are the “minor” size. But I love the pigeons and yesterday, the male pigeon was showing off and cooing to his sweetheart. That’s a beautiful sound. There is also a shot of a grumpy male that I just love. His eyes are just plain angry–probably a rejected suitor? I captioned some of them and put them on my Facebook page. If I get really brave, I may try this slider option, which I’m still learning WordPress, etc. so don’t wait on that one. ๐Ÿ™‚

He’s grumpy!

If you haven’t signed up for my e-newsletter, you may want to subscribe now. I included sales of my own, along with others, and there is a Valentine’s Day party February 9 that you may want to attend.

Be Mine on Sale .99

Also, BE MINE, my western historical is now on sale for a limited time at .99.

BE MINE is available at these places: Kindle US: UK: KOBO, iBOOKS, NOOK

Now, about the ad you see below. I do my own, ’cause I like doing them. ๐Ÿ™‚ But many writers pay for them or have someone on their team do it. All that takes time and energy, so authors do have to watch their real creative time, which is writing.

Also, SAM’S STORY is up now for .99, a short story and the first of my Nice Guys Short Story. I enjoyed writing from strictly the male point of view (POV) very much. I’ve finished Jon’s story, but tied up now writing a new series. I really, really had a time of the series location and finally decided–guess where? Where I grew up–or near there, in Washington state mountains near the Canadian border. I’m amid trying a lot of new stuff as always and have just ordered a stylus to make drawing on my iPad much easier.

BTW, my planner for 2017 is something new, too, and it’s working out great.

If there is anything you would particularly like to see covered in my blog, please let me know? You can write to me.ย And don’t forget–put this in your planner ๐Ÿ™‚ My enewsletter comes out on Tuesday.

Have a great day!

Ducks in a Row

posted in: HOLIDAYS, REFLECTIONS | 0

I walk along the lake and take lots of pictures I hope to paint one day. This day was really chilly and the ducks and geese were huddled up. The white one is a farm duck or goose or whatever. I especially love to watch the Canadian geese, (minors, I think). The arch of their long necks and the curves along their body are beautiful.

NOTE: This reminds me of that old “birds of a feather stick together”. But not always, apparently by that white bird whatever it is.

Setting up a new series isn’t easy and I’ve been struggling with the first one. It’s finally moving along. The setting is in the mountains where I grew up. My family still resides there. (I’ve been to all my book settings and have fictionalized them into other towns, etc.) Talk about getting ducks in a row.

“Along. Remember the planner I started earlier? This is my first year to really try to pinpoint my schedule. With some big stuff coming up, trips, family stuff and a whole lot of work, publishing, promos, etc. I’m hoping the planner will help.

My favorite holiday is coming up, Valentine’s Day, and I really enjoy it. One of the things I’m doing is sharing a Facebook party for SWEET ROMANCE READS, a fun bunch. February 9. Check it out? Writers share/trade/help each other, btw. That will be in my e-newsletter with other stuff, i.e. the .99 cent sale on BE MINE, a historical romance, with a lot of my ancestry in it. ๐Ÿ™‚ I actually managed to plan a Valentine’s Day sale!

A Valentine for You!

I am playing with a new graphics program, so no idea how this will turn out, once sent. ๐Ÿ™‚ Stuff has to be up and out there, before you see how it really works. I’m half proficient with Photoshop Elements, but testing programs on my iPad with various styluses. That one was done with a big clunky stylus.That’s one of my ongoing projects. Why, you ask? Because writers do a tremendous amount of ad work and covers, etc. (some of us anyway), and it’s fun, too!

Now, if I can just get those cookies made.

It’s bright and sunny and warm outside, so I’m headed off to visit the ducks with my camera! Have a great day!