Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Tuesday Teaser


This little teaser is from Fangs and Fur, the next book after Paws and Claws. Still gotta come up with a series name for this too lol.

If you read Paws and Claws, you might remember Alvin. He was the one who tried to kidnap Cade, Grady's mate. Alvin was blackmailed by Alpha Hogan. Remember the reason why? Yup, Hogan figured out Bert was Alvin's mate and beat Bert so Alvin would do what Hogan wanted... which was kidnap Cade.

Fangs and Fur starts out showing what Bert went through, and yeah, it's pretty graphic. This book will have a warning on it because of the violence. But I really think it's need so we understand exactly *why* Alvin betrayed his Alpha.

No, it isn't shown here, but y'all will get an idea of what Bert was dealing with.


* * * * 




Alpha Hogan glanced over to a scarred table set off to the side. “That thing still recording?”
“Yes, Alpha,” Dun answered as he approached Bert. “We have video of this.”
“Good.”
“What?” Horrified, Bert followed Alpha Hogan’s gaze. There on the table was an old tablet that had been propped up. They taped his beating?
“Should make for interesting viewing, don’t you think, Bert? Maybe this will convince Alvin,” Alpha Hogan said.
Panic flooded him at the implication. “Oh goddess, no! You can’t mean to show Alvin that video! You bastard! Do you know what that’ll do to him?”
“Get his attention, I’m hoping. I’m sure Delta Alvin will appreciate the seriousness of the situation after viewing it.” Alpha Hogan laughed with Dun, ignoring Bert’s agonized look. “But….” Then Alpha Hogan glanced at Bert and flashed a tight-lipped smiled. “Just in case he doesn’t fully grasp it, we’re going to give your mate all the—shall we say—motivation he needs.”
Heart pounding in terror, Bert fought viciously, but his body had nothing left to give. Wheaton jerked his arms behind him. Bert’s head spun from the pain. Dun wound the rope around his chest and through the open back of the chair until he was securely tied.

“Make sure he screams. Loudly too.” Indifferent, Alpha Hogan studied Bert. “Delta Alvin needs to understand exactly who he’s dealing with.”

Monday, November 20, 2017

It Takes Two to Tango - Rainbow Award Honorable Mention






So happy to announce that Tango earned an Honorable Mention in the Rainbow Awards. The Rainbow Awards is an annual contest celebrating outstanding work in LGBT fiction and nonfiction. Hosted and owned by blogger Elisa Rolle, the contest is open to all authors of work containing LGBT fictional characters and work chronicling the true stories of LGBT persons.

 Winners will be announced on December 8, 2017.






Fur, Fangs, and Felines: Book Four

Werecats mating with humans was bad enough…. But an Alpha werewolf?

Aidric’s life takes an unexpected turn when he meets Alpha Carter Lovelock of the Dark Lake Pack—who is apparently his mate. Now Aidric must decide whether to accept the mate the goddess chose, or deny her gift because cats and dogs just don’t mix.

Carter is in a pickle. He always assumed his mate would be a female werewolf. How else is Carter supposed to carry on his line and retain Alphaship? When Aidric comes into his life, Carter’s ex, Sabrina, isn’t giving up easily. Her brother, Delaney, is a thorn in Carter’s side, and some of the other werewolves go out of their way to make Aidric feel unwelcome, including one of his deltas, Evan.

Unfortunately, what little headway they make is destroyed during a full moon hunt when enemy werewolves attack Aidric and threaten the pack house where the Dark Lake pups are kept—an ambush that could have devastating consequences on their future.

Werewolves are notoriously insular, and before Carter and Aidric can build the life they want with each other, they’ll face a fight for acceptance.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Finicky Friday - Healthy Apple Raisin Cakes



Apple Raisin Cakes





Prep 10 m
Cook 7 m
Ready In 17 m
servings 203 cals


Ingredients

2 eggs, beaten 

1 cup applesauce 

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 

2 teaspoons white sugar 

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup whole wheat flour 

2 teaspoons baking powder 

2 teaspoons vanilla extract 

1/2 cup raisins


Directions

In a large mixing bowl, combine eggs, applesauce, cinnamon, sugar, flour, baking powder, vanilla, and raisins. Form small cakes out of the batter.

Heat a nonstick griddle over medium heat, fry the cakes until both sides are browned, about 5 to 7 minutes.


Can be serve with additional applesauce.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Finicky Friday - Pan-Fried Catfish with Fresh Veggie Relish



Pan-Fried Catfish with Fresh Veggie Relish




Time for Finicky Friday!


Ingredients

1 medium red bell pepper, very finely chopped

1 cup very finely chopped carrots

2 tablespoons very finely chopped red onion

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

3/4 teaspoon grated peeled gingerroot

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, crumbled

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

4 catfish fillets (about 4 ounces each), rinsed and patted dry

2 teaspoons canola or corn oil



Instructions

In a medium bowl, stir together the relish ingredients. Set aside.

In a small bowl, stir together the chili powder, oregano, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle over the fish. Using your fingertips, gently press the mixture so it adheres to the fish.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat, swirling to coat the bottom. Cook the fish for 3 minutes. Turn over. Cook for 3 minutes, or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.

Serve the fish with the relish spooned on top or on the side.

Serves 4


Nutrition Facts
~Serving Size: 3 ounce fish and 1/4 cup relish

Calories 175

Carbohydrate 1 g

Protein 24 g

Fat 8 g

Saturated Fat 1.5 g

Sugars 0

Dietary Fiber 0

Cholesterol 0


Sodium 60




Saturday, November 4, 2017

At Sixes and Sevens - Release date Nov 10th





Book #4 in the Fur, Fangs, and Felines series 


Preorder Buy Link:

Blurb:
Werecats mating with humans was bad enough…. But an Alpha werewolf?
Aidric’s life takes an unexpected turn when he meets Alpha Carter Lovelock of the Dark Lake Pack—who is apparently his mate. Now Aidric must decide whether to accept the mate the goddess chose, or deny her gift because cats and dogs just don’t mix.
Carter is in a pickle. He always assumed his mate would be a female werewolf. How else is Carter supposed to carry on his line and retain Alphaship? When Aidric comes into his life, Carter’s ex, Sabrina, isn’t giving up easily. Her brother, Delaney, is a thorn in Carter’s side, and some of the other werewolves go out of their way to make Aidric feel unwelcome, including one of his deltas, Evan.
Unfortunately, what little headway they make is destroyed during a full moon hunt when enemy werewolves attack Aidric and threaten the pack house where the Dark Lake pups are kept—an ambush that could have devastating consequences on their future.
Werewolves are notoriously insular, and before Carter and Aidric can build the life they want with each other, they’ll face a fight for acceptance.

Excerpt:
THERE WAS nothing better than being the butt of a cosmic joke.
My mate was a werewolf. A werewolf. Just what the hell was I supposed to do with that? The fact my cat wasn’t freaked out surprised me. It certainly freaked me out. What was my goddess thinking? My cat huffed, annoyed with me. Well, he was in good company—I was annoyed with myself.
I rested my forehead against the windowpane. In the week since I found out who my mate was, all I’d done was torture myself with the information. Enough already. Turning from the windowpane, I stripped and threw my clothes on the couch. There was just enough time to play outside before the sun set.
Squatting in front of the fire, I cleared my mind and let the change take me. I groaned loudly with the first crack of the bone. My body twisted in ways a regular human body was never intended to. Things tore and modified as I shrunk. Muscles realigned and bones reformed in a feline shape.
My spine tingled as my tail grew. Ears sprouted on top of my head, and my face pushed out to form a muzzle, complete with whiskers. Damn things caused my nose to twitch, and I pawed at it to stop the itch. Hair sprouted over my body, and then all four paws hit the ground. I stretched one leg out behind me—oh yeah, that felt good.
I took a step and stretched the other leg out, then swished my tail lazily behind me as I shook out my coat. All my human worries faded into the background as I strolled into the kitchen toward the patio door. One thing occupied my mind, and I pushed through the cat door I’d installed. I stood on the back porch and yowled loudly.
Snow!
I plowed into the pristine landscape, joy spreading through my heart. Wet coldness surrounded me, and I pranced. I loved snow. Loved it. However, since my clowder lived so far south, it was rare we got the cool fluffy goodness.
Bouncing around in the snow, I reared up on my hind legs and… hey. Hey! What was that? My front paws hit the ground, and I crouched, darting my eyes to the left and right. Something dark and slender fluttered right outside of my line of vision. Quiet. Must be quiet. Quick as a flash, I turned and pounced. The long furry thing wiggled away, jumping back and forth.
Jumping in the air, I twisted and came down. Whap! Whap! Whap! Growling, I pursued the long slender thing hopping around, determined to get it. Round and round I went, turning in circles as I chased…. Suddenly I stopped, plopped my butt down, and nonchalantly licked my paw.
Jeez. That was my tail.
Damn thing was always distracting me. Satisfied no one had seen, I flopped down in the snow. Fortunately my coat was thick enough to keep me warm. I stuck a paw out and watched it sink down. My ears twitched. Okay, that was totally cool. I shot out my other paw from underneath me to lay it upon the snow, and it too sank. Fun! Fun!
I bulldozed my way through a gigantic snowdrift. Wheeee! Nothing could stand in my way. The snowdrift I battled through might be larger than Mount Everest, but I would persevere and take no prisoners. I’d slay my enemies. The cold wouldn’t stand in my way. As I tunneled forward, the cold embraced me in its chilly arms.
Damn. I paused in the snow tunnel I’d created. It was kind of cool in here, but a bit harder to breathe than expected. Ears twitching, I backed out and shook my head. Snow flew everywhere. My nose twitched. Oh. Oh dear. I pawed at it, but….
Achoo!
I sniffed, snorted, and twitched my nose. Sneezing as a cat was probably the most uncomfortable thing ever, and I pawed at my nose. Ugh. Not much I could do since I currently had paws and not fingers.
All of a sudden, I froze, and my ear swiveled. What was that? Casually, I turned. Several feet away from me there was movement, which caught my attention. I crouched, my itchy nose forgotten. Listening closely, I tracked the sound, but I wasn’t sure…. Yes!
Something moved, and it wasn’t my tail this time. On superlight paws, I tiptoed across the snowy whiteness, edging ever closer. My breathing leveled out as I prowled nearer… nearer. There it was again, and I paused. Ears twitching madly, I scanned the area, and even though nothing moved, I knew where the sound originated.
I focused on it, waiting… waiting. Holding my breath, my tail skittering behind me, I pounced… and whatever I’d heard burrowed madly through the snow, escaping. I debated chasing after it, but I wasn’t really hungry. Besides, playing was more fun than hunting. I fell backward, kicking my back legs. A shower of snow rained down. There was nothing better than being a cat.
I rolled onto my paws and shook out my coat. Too bad my mate wasn’t here. I’d love to see him rolling around in the snow. We could run, or he could chase me. Or I him. The human part of me snorted in derision. I ignored him. Humans made things much more complicated than they needed to be.
A red bird landed on a branch above me, and, unable to resist, I raced toward the tree. I sprang, claws extended, and climbed. Up the tree I flew until I found the branch where the bird sat. Carefully I edged out on the limb, my eyes glued on the prize and… with a squawk, the red bird flew off. Damn.
Annoyed, I sharpened my claws against the tree. Yeah, bird, that could’ve been you. Oh well, part of the fun was climbing the tree anyway. Trees were fun. So were balls of yarn. And boxes. Ohhhhh. I loved an empty box. An empty box sitting in the sun was even better. Oh! Oh! And a blanket in the box that was sitting in the sun where I could nap. Yeah. Kitty heaven.
My tail drooped. But lately even those things couldn’t cheer me up. Thoroughly disgusted with myself, I climbed down the tree and trudged across the snow toward the house. After I slipped inside through the cat door, I shifted into my human form.
Tired and aggravated, I dressed, then knelt in front of the fireplace, stirring the fire. The month of February promised to be a cold one, even down here in the South. The flames danced across the surface of the wood in an explosion of heat and energy, consuming it. The process would continue until there was nothing left but ash.
Morosely I stared into the fire, unable to stop the comparison between the wood and myself. Was this my fate too? To be consumed? Would there be anything left of me if I mated Carter—I refused to call my mate by his damn title inside my head.
I shuddered. Of all the mates out there, why him? I turned away from the fire. Questioning her will was pointless, but I couldn’t stop myself. Carter had plainly stated he thought his mate would be female since he had the burden of providing an heir for his pack.
Well, there was already one strike against me. There were many things I could do, including shifting into an animal, but providing children wasn’t one of them. I wasn’t sure if I was relieved or disappointed.
The whiteness of the landscape caught my attention, and I stopped in front of a window. Sightlessly I stared out over the stream in front of my cabin. Alpha Carter Lovelock of the Dark Lake Pack—okay, that last name did bring a smile to my lips—was a big bull of a man with cold golden hazel-brown eyes. Whoever said such a color was warm never met Carter. He was tall, taller than Marshell. If I had to guess, I’d say he was at least six foot six inches or more… and stocky. Broad.
Our meeting was brief, but I walked away with the impression of a man who commanded the space around him. Intimidating. Powerful. Sexy. The diamond earring he wore was insanely sexy too. He was the things I yearned for. I placed my hand on the cold glass pane and shivered, unsure if the action came from my thoughts or the coldness of the day.
My cat grumbled loudly, letting me know it wasn’t the cold, even though there was a fresh layer of snow on the ground. All this back-and-forth was giving me a headache. There was no denying I wanted Carter. His body—all that bulk, sharp planes, and muscles—appealed to me.
And he was bald. I clenched my fists and tapped them lightly against the windowpane. If there was one trait that drew me to a potential sex partner, it was that. I loved bald men, but it was so rare among shifters it was almost nonexistent.
Shifters simply were not bald—not on purpose, anyway. I was sure there was a story there. Sure, they could shave their heads, but once they shifted and then returned to their human forms, the hair regrew. Because of that, I didn’t get to indulge my little quirk often.
Through the years I’d noticed several humans who were bald, and I found them appealing but… well, human. Until recently we simply did not mix with them. But since Dolf’s half-human mate, Kirk, hit our clowder like a tornado, several firmly held beliefs had been destroyed.
Thanks to Kirk opening our eyes, I finally admitted I might’ve made a mistake in judging humans so harshly. I even hooked up for a one-night stand with some who, of course, happened to be bald. I found humans weren’t as bad as we always thought and was even considering asking a few out on a date when my life fell apart. Which was a nice way of saying I met my mate.
Speaking of my mate, my fingers itched to run across that hairless dome of his. My breathing spiked. Goddess, I was getting hard just thinking about all that smooth, shiny skin. My cat yowled in exasperation. He didn’t understand my human nonsense. Carter was my mate. As far as my cat was concerned, that was the end of that.
And this was just stupid.
There was no way a mating between a werewolf and a werecat could work. All I was doing was delaying the inevitable. Obviously Carter felt the same way since he hadn’t bothered to call me in the week since that meeting. He certainly wasn’t pursuing me.
Growling, I stomped to the bedroom. Well, screw him. I needed to be mated to a werewolf like I needed a hole in the head. I snatched up my cell phone and promptly dropped the thing on the bed when it rang. Startled, I hissed at it. Shit. The ringtone continued to blare as I snatched it up. If I’d cracked the stupid screen, I was going to…. I blinked in surprise.
Speak of the devil—or in this case—the werewolf. Running my finger across the screen, I unlocked my cell. My heart pounded. If I answered this, I’d have to stop avoiding the situation. Was I ready? There’d be no going back. Did I really want to take this step? Did I have a choice?
I answered the damn phone. “Hello?”
“Aidric LeClair?”
I closed my eyes for a second, took a deep breath, and then opened them. Why did his voice have to be so low and rumbly? I shivered. “Speaking.”
“This is Carter Lovelock.”
Right away I noticed he omitted his title, but that didn’t surprise me. He had no way of knowing how secure my phone line was.
“Are you there?”
“What?” Jeez, what was I doing? “Yes, I’m here. Sorry about that. I was….” Okay, no, I was not going to tell him I was perving on his voice. “Anyway. What can I do for you?”
There was silence on the line. The temptation to bang my head against the nearest wall was great, but I resisted. Had I actually asked him what could I do for him? Could I possibly sound stuffier?
“I can think of several ways to answer that question, but maybe it would be better not to.”
“I’m sorry?” I cringed. In my mind I saw my cat with his paw over his eyes. Well, guess that answered the question of whether I could sound stuffier. Apparently I could.
“Ah, is this a bad time?”
Is there ever a good time to make an idiot of myself? “No, no, it’s not a bad time.”
“I see. Cat got your tongue, perhaps?”
Whatever nerves were plaguing me suddenly ignited, and with a whoosh, went up in a screaming mass of indignant flames. Abruptly I wanted to use Alpha Lovelock as a scratching post.
“You know, your kind is proof evolution can go in reverse.”
Now I understood exactly what the term “dead air” meant. I couldn’t believe I’d said that, but by damned, he deserved it. Cat got my tongue—seriously?
Finally Carter chuckled. “I guess I did ask for that, didn’t I?”
“I would say so.” I collapsed on the bed, knees weak. Conversing with this werewolf was like pushing a boulder. Uphill. During a monsoon.
“Hey, it got you talking to me, at least—even if it was to insult me,” Carter said. Then his voice turned serious. “You and I need to meet.”
“Yes, I suppose we do.”
“I’ll give you directions to my house and—”
“No.” He couldn’t be serious.
“Excuse me?”
How much arrogance could a person cram into two words? “I’m not coming on your pac… your, ah… your place. No way.”
“You have my word you won’t be harmed.”
Whoop-de-freaking-do. “That’s nice and all, but I’m still not coming there.”
“Well, I can’t come to you without permission from your… from Dolf.”
That was definitely a no too. “I agree. That’s not a good idea either.”
Dolf and the rest of the betas were already too interested in my life. The nosy bunch of felines would probably hide in the surrounding trees if Carter came here. It wouldn’t be curiosity killing the cat; it’d be me.
“Then what do you suggest, because we do need to meet. I’m afraid I really must insist.”
I almost told him he could insist until he turned blue in the face, but I was trying to be civil. “I think somewhere neutral would be better.”
“And private.”
I hesitated. Private meant isolated, and isolated meant… well, isolated. Although I understood why he’d request that—we didn’t have to watch what we said if humans were not about—I didn’t know this Alpha. He was my mate and wasn’t supposed to be able to hurt me, but did I really want to put that to the test?
“I… fine. I will tell Dolf where I’m going to be, though.”
“You should. Temple and Shea will know where I am too.”
I’d forgotten all about his betas. “You’re coming alone, correct?”
“I… no. I can’t. You know that. Would you allow Dolf to go somewhere unescorted?”
Damn. He had a point. Alphas never went anywhere without at least one beta with them. Now what? “So you’re going to have one of them with you?”
“I’m afraid so. That’s nonnegotiable, and you know why.”
This was turning into a massive headache, and we hadn’t even laid eyes on each other yet. I growled softly. “I am not discussing anything of a personal nature with you as long as you have an extra set of ears listening in.”
“Which is why I suggested you come here. It’s easier.”
Of course it was—for them. I didn’t find anything about going there easy. The idea of being the lone cat surrounded by nothing but wolves was intimidating. In shifted form they were bigger and heavier than my cat, which was the size of a large Savannah.
While we could be arrogant, we had nothing on werewolves. Ha! Arrogant. The word described them perfectly, along with sarcastic, bossy, and vain. They acted as if the rest of us shifters should bow down to them.
If Carter came here, one of his betas would be with him. Plus they’d have to spend several nights, considering Carter’s pack land was several hours away. I was uncomfortable offering Carter my guest room, but I might’ve done it. But his beta too? Not happening. That was one werewolf too many.
Having two strange males—who were werewolves—under the same roof with me was more than I could handle. Not to mention I only had the one spare guest room, and I couldn’t see Temple and Carter sharing a bed.
My cat immediately growled his opinion on that. I’d probably fillet that sucker if he tried to get into bed with my mate… oh no. Banging my head against the nearest wall was looking better and better. I was getting possessive of Carter, which was a bad sign. A very, very bad sign.
“Aidric?”
“What?” I snapped.
“I’ve already given you my word nothing bad will happen to you here.”
“That’s supposed to reassure me?”
The growl that came across the phone line lifted the hair on the back of my neck.
“You question my word? My word? That’s an insult in so many ways I don’t know where to begin.”
By the goddess’s right paw, what was I thinking? “Okay. That was uncalled for, and I apologize, but you have to understand how uncomfortable this makes me.”
“Apology accepted. I do understand, and I promise you if any of my wolves lays a hand on you, they will regret it.”
Well, hell. He meant it. I heard the conviction in his voice and pinched the bridge of my nose. A voice in the back of my head whispered this was a disaster waiting to happen, but I couldn’t see a way around it.
It’d be easier for me to go there, even though the thought left me trembling. On the other hand, what better way to see if I could tolerate living among the wolves? Better to find out now before we mated, than later when there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it.
“Fine. I’ll come there.” I clutched the phone as my stomach dropped to somewhere around my knees. “But understand this—the moment I feel threatened, I’m out of there.”
“Understood. If that happens, I want to know about it immediately, because you won’t feel that way for long, I promise you. Would you consent to staying for a couple of nights?”
Yep, the aforementioned headache just sank its claws into the base of my neck. “Might as well.”
“Thank you. I know this is difficult, but all I ask is that we sit down and discuss this like two rational adults.”
Then we were already screwed, because I’d never known a werewolf to be rational, but why throw that into the conversation? “Agreed. Send me your address so I can program it into the GPS.”
“I will. Is the snow awful down there?”
Oh yay. Small talk and the ever-safe topic of the weather. “No. Not really. The temperature is supposed to rise tomorrow. That’ll get it melting quickly.” Which sucked, but it was better for driving. “I need to talk with Dolf and square this with him so I can have the time off. I’ll probably leave tomorrow after lunch. Since it’ll be Sunday, the traffic shouldn’t be too bad.”
“Excellent. Send me a text so I know when you leave.”
Already with the demands. “How about you ask me to send you a text? I’m not Temple or Shea, even though I hold the same rank. And you’re not my Alp… well. You know. You might want to remember that.”
“But I do hold the same rank as Dolf. You might want to remember that.”
I gritted my teeth. We were already off to a rip-roaring start. “While I am perfectly willing to give you the respect your rank deserves, I kiss nobody’s ass. If you want me to do something, ask instead of demand. I’m your mate, not your beta.” I cursed softly for my slip of the tongue.
“You’re right. I….” Carter sighed. “Will you send me a text before you leave?”
That was better. A firm believer in starting out how I meant to go on, I answered him in the perkiest voice I could muster. “Sure. I can do that.”
“I’ll see you when you get here. Have a good evening. Good night.”
“You too. Good night.” On that cheerful note, I ended the call and slipped my cell back into my jeans pocket.
If we didn’t kill each other within the first hour, it’d be a miracle.



Author bio and links:
M.A. Church is a true Southern belle who spent many years in the elementary education sector. Now she spends her days lost in fantasy worlds, arguing with hardheaded aliens on far-off planets, herding her numerous shifters, or trying to tempt her country boys away from their fishing poles. It’s a full-time job, but hey, someone’s gotta do it!
When not writing, she’s exploring the latest M/M novel to hit the market, watching her beloved Steelers, or watching HGTV. That’s if she’s not on the back porch tending to the demanding wildlife around the pond in the backyard. The ducks are very outspoken. She’s married to her high school sweetheart, and they have two children.
She is a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.

Contact M.A.:
The Harvest FB fan page: www.facebook.com/#!/theharvest00

Friday, November 3, 2017

Cashew Chicken Rotini Salad


Welcome to Finicky Friday!




Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 00:12
Serves 16

Ingredients
1 (16 oz) pkg rotini

4 c. cubed chicken

1 c. seedless green grapes, halved

1 c. seedless red grapes, halved

1 (5 oz) pkg dried cranberries

1 c. ranch salad dressing

3/4 c. mayonnaise

2 c. salted cashews


Instructions
Cook the pasta according to packaged directions. Drain pasta and rinse in cold water.

In a large bowl combine chicken, grapes and cranberries. Add pasta.

In a small bowl, whisk ranch dressing and mayonnaise. Pour over salad and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

Just before serving stir in cashews.

(I've made this a few times now and loved it. I ended up adding more ranch dressing after it was fixed since I couldn't actually taste it. I just squirted it on and tossed it lol. Side note: I'm not a huge fan of Ranch dressing, but on this it is good! It's not overpowering either.)



Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per ServingAs Served
Calories 460kcalCalories from fat 265
% Daily Value
Total Fat 29g
Saturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 30mg
Sodium 92mg
Carbohydrate 37g
Dietary Fiber 2g
Sugars 11g
Protein 13g

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Winner of the Halloween Giveaway!







Chibi Librarian, you're the winner! Email has been sent. Thanks everyone who took part! There'll be giveaways coming before we round out the year. :) 

~M

Friday, October 27, 2017

Finicky Friday - Reese's Bat



Reese's Bats
These will fly away at your next Halloween party!


TOTAL TIME: 0:15
YIELD: 10 BATS

INGREDIENTS
10 mini Reese's cups
5 oreos
20 Candy eyes
1 tbsp. peanut butter


DIRECTIONS
Cut all Oreo cookies in half and gently remove the cream. Cut each half in half to create the wings.
Using a toothpick or a small spoon, apply a small dab of peanut butter to one end of each Oreo. Press onto the Reese's cup to make wings.

Next, place a small dab of peanut butter onto the back of two candy eyes and place on top of the edge of the wings. Serve.



Thursday, October 26, 2017

Halloween Giveaway! Comment to win!



America's Favorite Halloween Candy State By State

Let the candy games begin!

Not all Halloween candy is created equal. Whether you're into sour gummies or dark chocolates, playing favorites is inevitable. Check below for America's favorite Halloween candy, state by state. Curious as to what stands out?

~The candy that pulled the highest total number of votes turned out to be Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup. It was one of only three candies (the other two were Kit Kat and Butterfinger) to be voted top treats by every single state in the U.S.

~The candy of choice in the most number of states this year turned out to be the polarizing Halloween staple—Candy corn.

~Candy corn also proved to be the top pick for Oregon, Wyoming, Tennessee, Texas, and South Carolina.




So, are you craving candy yet? Ha! Me too. It may not be Halloween quite yet, but in the meantime take a look at the breakdown of favorite candy, state by state:

Alabama - AirHeads

Alaska - Snickers

Arizona - Toblerone

Arkansas - Skittles

California - Lifesavers

Colorado - Milky Way

Connecticut - Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

Delaware - 3 Musketeers

Florida - Nestlé Crunch Bar

Georgia - Pixy Stix

Hawaii - 100 Grand Bar

Idaho - Butterfinger

Illinois - Snickers

Indiana - Reese's Pieces

Iowa - Twix

Kansas - Twizzlers

Kentucky - Whoppers

Louisiana - Swedish Fish

Maine - Starburst

Maryland - Almond Joy

Massachusetts - Starburst

Michigan - M&M's

Minnesota - 100 Grand Bar

Mississippi - Hershey's Kisses

Missouri - Hershey's Kisses

Montana - Kit Kat Bar

Nebraska - Skittles

Nevada - Jolly Ranchers

New Hampshire - Tootsie Rolls

New Jersey - Sour Patch Kids

New Mexico - 3 Musketeers

New York - Sweet Tarts

North Carolina - Butterfinger

North Dakota - Sour Patch Kids

Ohio - Milky Way

Oklahoma - M&M's

Oregon - Candy corn

Pennsylvania - Swedish Fish

Rhode Island - Reese's Peanut Butter Cups

South Carolina - Candy corn

South Dakota - Laffy Taffy

Tennessee - Candy corn

Texas - Candy corn

Utah - Nerds

Vermont - Almond Joy

Virginia - Reese's Pieces

Washington - AirHeads

West Virginia - Oreos

Wisconsin - Laffy Taffy

Wyoming - Candy corn

District of Columbia - Twix


Does your candy obsession align with others in your state?

Tell me yes or no in the comments for a chance to win a $5.00 dollar GC from Amazon. Please make sure to leave an email addy. (I need a way to get in touch so I can check what email address to send the GC to.) Winner will be announced November 1st!

If it doesn’t match up, feel free to tell me your favorite! I'll start. Mississippi is Hershey's Kisses. While I like them, they aren't my fav. That would be Twix lol. 

Happy Halloween, ya'll!
~M

Friday, October 20, 2017

Finicky Friday - Graveyard Brownies





Graveyard Brownies




What You Need
2 pkg. (4 oz. each) BAKER'S Unsweetened Chocolate, divided
3/4 cup butter or margarine
2 cups granulated sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup flour
1 Tbsp. decorating gel
24 peanut butter sandwich cookies
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping (Do not thaw.)
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup BAKER'S ANGEL FLAKE Coconut, tinted green

Make It
Heat oven to 350°F.
Line 13x9-inch pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides; spray with cooking spray. Microwave 4 oz. chocolate and butter in large microwaveable bowl on HIGH 2 min. or until butter is melted; stir until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is well blended. Stir in granulated sugar. Blend in eggs and vanilla. Add flour; mix well. Spread onto bottom of prepared pan.

Bake 30 to 35 min. or until toothpick inserted in center comes out with fudgy crumbs. (Do not overbake.) Cool completely in pan. Meanwhile, use decorating gel to decorate cookies to resemble gravestones.

Microwave remaining chocolate and COOL WHIP in microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 to 2 min. or until chocolate is completely melted; stir until blended. Add powdered sugar; mix well.

Use foil handles to lift dessert from pan; spread with frosting. Stand cookies in brownies; add small amount of coconut at base of each to resemble grass.



Monday, October 16, 2017

Winners of the Giveaway!




sjjs3189

Jen CW

Megan Jo

Kayla Stone

Sam H. 



Hey y'all! Sorry it took so long to do this. With the deal with the cat and his nearly two weeks in the Animal Hospital, I just forgot. Emails have been sent!

~M


Friday, October 13, 2017

Finicky Friday - Candy Corn Bark




Candy Corn Bark


A delightful recipe only for those with a incurable sweet tooth! Candy corn mixed with chocolate sandwich cookies and pretzels will please your whole Halloween crowd.


Prep 10 m
Cook 10 m
Ready In 50 m

Ingredients
16 Halloween-colored chocolate sandwich cookies, chopped
1 1/2 cups broken small pretzels
1/3 cup raisins
1 1/2 pounds white chocolate, broken into squares
2 cups candy corn
orange and brown sprinkles


Directions
Spread the cookies, pretzels and raisins evenly onto a lightly greased small baking sheet. Melt chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of simmering water, or in the microwave, stirring frequently until melted. Remove from the heat while there are still a few chunks, and stir until smooth. White chocolate burns easily.


Drizzle chocolate with a spoon over the goodies in the pan, spreading the top flat to coat evenly. Top with candy corn and sprinkles. Let cool until firm. Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.




Monday, October 9, 2017

Love Bytes Book of the Week Poll!




Books which achieved a 4.5 or 5.0 review last week from their reviewers are entered. 

The top two books from each week’s poll will roll into their Book of the Month poll at month’s end. 


If ya have time, can y'all vote for Dragon's Hoard? 

Friday, October 6, 2017

Witches' Hat - Finicky Friday

Time for Finicky Friday!



A cute and simple little Halloween treat that everyone will love. The amount this recipe makes depends on how many cookies and chocolate kisses you have. It just depends on how many you want.


Prep 1 h
Ready In 1 h

Ingredients
2 (16 ounce) packages fudge stripe cookies
1/4 cup honey, or as needed
1 (9 ounce) bag milk chocolate candy kisses, unwrapped
1 (4.5 ounce) tube decorating gel


Directions
Place a fudge stripe cookie with bottom side up onto a work surface. Smear a small dab (about 1/8 teaspoon) of honey onto the bottom of a chocolate kiss, and secure the candy piece to the center of the cookie, covering the hole. Use decorating gel to pipe a small bow onto the cookie at the base of the candy piece. Repeat with remaining ingredients.



Monday, October 2, 2017

Bound by Destiny is live!









Bound by Destiny is live!

Buy links



(still waiting for Smashword to okay this for the premium catalog, but when it does, it'll go out to all the other places)




Blurb:

Destiny brought them together even before they were born.

Raiden Shou, a fierce and loving Tah’Narian warrior, has everything he ever wanted. A loving mate, a highly sought-after position as Chief Helmsman of the Unity, and now the possibility of a young in the near future. But destiny never promised life would be easy.

A chance encounter with the Ne Reyn goes horribly wrong, an enemy from the past makes a reappearance, and egos flare out of control. A rejection turns lethal during a trip to Quai to collect mates for the Tah’Narian Volunteer Program. Jealousies threaten to destroy Raiden’s perfect life.

A plot is hatched, and Raiden’s mate, Dayo Kwen, is kidnapped during a mission. Time is running out as estrus looms on the horizon for Dayo. Once it strikes, Dayo knows his body will betray him. He’s alone, scared, and surrounded by enemies. Can help from the most unlikely sources change the course he’s set on? Will Raiden and Dayo overcome the obstacles they face? Only their belief that destiny bound them together can save them.







And to make things ever better... Bound by Fate has a new cover!


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Release Day - Dragon's Hoard!




Dragon's Hoard has been released by Dreamspinner Press!

Buy Link:





Blurb:

To be loved by a dragon is to be treasured.

A hundred years ago, werewolf Alpha Montgomery took a risk driven by desperation—he borrowed money from the ancient dragon Warwick Ehecatl, putting up the pack lands as collateral. Now the debt is due, and dragons don’t forget—or forgive. Warwick demands Montgomery’s son, Avery, and three businesses as compensation. As an Omega, Avery knows he is basically useless to his pack, so he might as well agree. He soon has second thoughts, though. Warwick is fearsome, and he’s free to do as he likes with Avery.

Warwick knows his race’s reputation, and he even admits some of it is deserved. But he’d rather cut off his tail than let his innocent mate’s light go out. It won’t be easy, but buried deep, there’s something between them worth safeguarding.

Cover Artist: Aaron Anderson
House Line Dreamspun Beyond | #5
Genres: Urban Fantasy / Werewolves/Shapeshifters


Excerpt: 
THE SUBTLE lighting in the office in his house cast long shadows that danced across the room. Burning wood popped and hissed in the fireplace, the scent bringing back memories from yesteryear. Restless, Warwick shoved back from his monstrosity of a desk.
The warmth of the fire beckoned, and seeing no reason to deny himself, he strode across the floor. As he drew nearer, the heat wrapped around his body, and he sighed. Bending, he held his hands out toward the crackling fire. Once his fingers warmed, he straightened and turned.
With his back to the fire, he carelessly brushed a long strand of hair behind his ear. He’d opened the blinds when he’d entered his office in a hopeless bid for daylight, not that it did much good. Good thing his eyesight was better than a human’s.
The day was dreary, rainy, and overcast. He hated this time of the year. No matter how many layers of clothes he wore, the endless chill seeped in. He much preferred heat and humidity, sunny skies and warmth. His kind detested the cold.
Still staring out of the ground floor window, he took notice of the foot traffic on the street, darting here and there like worker bees. Paranormals mixed with humans—there was no hiding now. As with anything else, there were those who thought the species should be separated and those who didn’t. Werewolves had made their presence known sometime in the 1700s. Other paranormal beings had come out not long after.
Once the panic had died down, humans responded fairly well. For the most part, anyhow. There were still squabbles, of course. Humans didn’t seem to know how to do anything else. Fortunately they tended to leave paranormals alone. More often than not, they were too busy fighting among themselves.
What the humans were calling the Great War was in full swing. Warwick brushed a microscopic piece of fuzz from his shirt, shaking his head. Humans and their wars. Would they never learn? But there was no denying it afforded him the opportunity to invest in their conflicts, and dragons never passed up an opportunity to add to their hoard.
A soft knock at his office door drew his attention. He inhaled, and the scent of hair cream, freshly pressed clothes, and human teased his senses.
“Enter,” Warwick called.
Clarence Wiltshire, his clerk, opened the office door. He started toward the desk but paused when he saw no one sat behind it. Confident of where he would find his boss, he glanced at the fireplace. “Sir, there’s an Alpha Theodore Montgomery of the Sunset Creek Pack here to see you.”
Warwick pursed his lips. “Interesting.”
“I’ll say, sir.” Clarence bobbed his head. “It must be catastrophic to send an Alpha werewolf to your doorstep.”
“Only one way to find out.” As much as he hated leaving the roaring fire, Warwick crossed the floor, his footsteps muffled by the oriental rugs, and returned to his desk. “Give it twenty minutes, then escort him back. Also make sure to offer him a beverage while he waits.”
“He’s not going to like having to wait, sir.”
“I’m well aware.” Warwick picked up his absurdly expensive tailored suit coat and slipped it on. “That’s the point.”
“Yes, sir.” Clarence smirked, then wiped any emotions off his face, going back to the usual pleasant blankness he showed prospective clients. “Twenty minutes.”
“Thank you.” Warwick settled into his comfortable desk chair. This was no casual meeting. He intended to throw the Alpha off-balance by having him wait, but the ploy would also show exactly who held the power in the room.
Twenty minutes later to the second, his efficient assistant escorted Alpha Montgomery inside. Warwick stood and acknowledged the Alpha with a slight bob of his head. There was no need for him to bare his throat since he wasn’t another werewolf, not that he would anyhow. Dragons were at the top of the shifter food chain. Nor did he offer his hand. Werewolves tended to be snarly about who touched them without permission, the silly creatures.
Alpha Montgomery acknowledged the greeting and returned it, although his head bob was much more grandiose.
“Alpha Theodore Montgomery of the Sunset Creek Pack, I bid you welcome. Please, join me.”
“Thank you.” Alpha Montgomery crossed the room, his gait hurried. “I appreciate you seeing me without the courtesy of having an appointment.”
“Yes, well, circumstances are usually dire when people come to me, and often they don’t have time to make one. Have a seat.” Warwick gestured at the plush wine-colored leather chairs in front of his desk. He made a point of standing. Warwick would not sit first. Having another paranormal look up to him was another way to reinforce who was more commanding.
Alpha Montgomery gritted his teeth. Ah yes, there was nothing better than power games first thing in the morning.
As the struggle for control continued, Warwick took note of his visitor. Like most werewolves, the Alpha was a large male with muscles. Unless the wolf was an Omega, they were also hairy, above average in height, and had dark hair and eyes.
Warwick ensured his features remained blank, even as he smirked inside. Compared with a werewolf, he was not only shorter, but less muscled. While the werewolf was bulky, Warwick was lean and mean. The only thing he and the Alpha had in common was the dark hair Warwick also wore long.
“Thank you.” Alpha Montgomery lowered himself into one of the seats.
“Now, please, tell me how I may be of service.” Satisfied his point had been made, Warwick sat behind his desk. Just because the atmosphere was tense didn’t mean manners had to be left outside the door.
“I need a loan.”
“Most people do when they come to me.” Precise and to the point. He liked that. Warwick opened a desk drawer and withdrew several forms. “How much?”
Alpha Montgomery quoted a sum, and Warwick lifted a shapely eyebrow. Surprising a dragon wasn’t easy.
“I see.” He pushed the sheets of paper across the desk. “The forms are standard. Fill them out so I have an idea of what you plan to put up as collateral for such a massive loan.”
“Collateral.” Alpha Montgomery tugged at his collar in what Warwick assumed was an effort to loosen the suffocating restriction from his tie. “I, ah, was hoping not to put anything up.”
Warwick swallowed the laugh bubbling up. “And I was hoping to spend this winter on a warm, sunny beach—neither of which is going to happen, unfortunately. If you want the loan, you put up collateral. That’s the only way I do business.”
Alpha Montgomery scowled. “Do you know who I am? The connections I have? The fact that my pack is one of the largest around, that should be sufficient.”
“It isn’t.” Warwick coolly gazed across the desk. “Alpha, you need the money. I have it to give. Paranormals only come to me as a last resort, so I’m sure you’ve tried to obtain the currency elsewhere. Am I right?”
Alpha Montgomery didn’t speak, but his scowl said enough. So did the sudden spike in tension. The acidic scent of bone-deep worry filled Warwick’s nostrils. He struggled to suppress the sneeze that threatened.
“I thought so. If I loan you the money, you will put up collateral,” Warwick continued. Arrogant werewolf. Did the Alpha really think Warwick would loan him the sum he quoted with nothing more than his signature? “And from the amount you requested, I’m going to demand every property you own.”
“You can’t do that!” Alpha Montgomery’s claws peeked out as he gripped the chair arms. “If I default—”
“I’ll take everything you own, kick your pack off your land, and sell it to recoup my losses.” Warwick shrugged. “That’s the price of doing business, my dear Alpha. Take the money or not. It matters not to me.”
Alpha Montgomery growled softly. “You really are a cold-blooded bastard, aren’t you?”
Warwick faced the Alpha. His eyes shifted into a brilliant purple, the color of his dragon, with a slitted black pupil. Scrollwork, only slightly lighter than the purple of his eyes, appeared upon his eyelids and right below his eyes. His fangs, which appeared normal in human form, lengthened. His fingernails grew to deadly sharp claws as he partially shifted. “Indeed I am.” Menace, deep and thick, vibrated in his voice. “Something you may wish to keep in mind, considering I can snap your neck with little to no thought.” Warwick unleashed his power, which seeped through the room, blanketing everything. A smothered gasp came from the outer office where Clarence’s desk was located. It wasn’t the first time his assistant experienced such, and no doubt would not be the last.
Alpha Montgomery straightened in his chair and snarled as his own power rose to meet Warwick’s. Sweat beaded and rolled down the Alpha’s face. The flames in the lanterns flickered, and the air shimmered. But as quickly as Alpha Montgomery’s power rose, it dropped like a puppet with its strings cut. The Alpha collapsed back in the chair, pale and shivering.
“By all the wolf gods,” Alpha Montgomery whispered, horror finely etched upon his features.
Warwick, still composed as ever, finally allowed the smirk that had been lurking to cross his face. “That was unwise, Alpha. You may be powerful, but you’re nothing compared to me. I was centuries old before you were ever born. Test me again and the next time, you won’t walk out of here on your own two feet.”
Alpha Montgomery gulped.
“Now, are you filling out those papers or are you leaving my office empty-handed?”
“F-filling out the papers.” Fear rolled off the Alpha werewolf.
“Excellent.” Warwick leaned back in his chair and returned to his wholly human form, pleased he’d made his point. “Now, make sure to fill out the paperwork fully, please.”
Oh yes, today was going to be a good day.