Friday, January 31, 2014
Thursday, January 30, 2014
Patty Smith Hall has been making up stories to keep herself and others occupied since she was knee-high to a grasshopper. Now she’s thrilled to share her love of history with others, including her husband of 30 years, Danny; her beautiful and talented daughters, Jennifer and Carly, and her future son-in-law, Dan. Her third book based in World War II Georgia, Hearts Rekindled is available Feb. 1st.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
I went on a spiritual retreat, and it was a really good experience. We spent an entire weekend focused on the story of The Good Samaritan. I've never done anything like that before, but I am really glad I did. It was so nice taking that one piece of Scripture and really letting it sink in. I've been on a number of retreats over the years with different church groups, and I think this one was my favorite.
So many times we think that we're too busy or it's too selfish to get away from our family and life obligations for a weekend to spend time focusing on our spiritual growth, but I'm firmly convinced that not only is it good for us to get away, it's necessary! One of the things we talked about at the retreat was that in order to take care of the people around you, you've got to take care of yourself too! It's like they always tell you on the plane: put on your own oxygen mask first!
If you get a chance to go on a retreat, whether it be with your church, or another group, I highly recommend it! I may still be confused about which day it is, but I feel pretty good about all the stuff I have to conquer and I feel much more capable of taking care of my family.
What about you? Have you had experiences with going on retreats?
Monday, January 27, 2014
The Australian Open Tennis Championships were played during the past two weeks in Melbourne, Australia. Stan Wawrinka is the men's champion for this year. This is his first tennis grand slam title. For years he has played in the shadow of Roger Federer, a fellow Swiss countryman. I first saw Stan Wawrinka play when my husband and I went to The Wimbledon Tennis Championships in 2008. Since that time I have followed his career and seen how hard he has worked to attain this goal. I was thrilled to see him win.
Attaining one's goal usually takes hard work no matter what that goal is. In our stories, our characters have goals. As writers we try to put obstacles in front of our characters to make achieving that goal harder. Without those difficulties the story would probably be very boring. As romance readers we like to see the characters overcome the obstacles and achieve those goals on their way to a happy ending.
Have you achieved a goal that you've worked hard for, or is there a goal that you are working towards? Please share it with us.
Friday, January 24, 2014
Feeling faint, Nancy sagged against the rack of 50% off shoes at the front of the store, sending a pair of whimsical purple and yellow stilettos tumbling to the floor. So many of the clues pointed to the man she'd thought was the love of her life.
Thursday, January 23, 2014
“It would help if we knew his hair color.” Nancy glanced up from her list of suspects to see Shanna and Garth staring at each other with identical expressions: besotted. For the past two days they’d been meeting in Nancy’s shoe shop to try to figure out who her secret admirer was, but the only admiration in the room was between the two of them.
Award-winning Florida author Louise M. Gouge writes historical fiction for Harlequin's Love Inspired imprint. In addition to numerous other awards, Louise is the recipient of the prestigious Inspirational Readers’ Choice Award for her 2005 historical novel, Hannah Rose (first place) and her 2011 Regency novella, The Gentleman Takes a Bride, (second place). Her most recent release is a Regency romance, A Lady of Quality. Please visit Louise's Web site at http://blog.Louisemgouge.com
Tuesday, January 21, 2014
The most interesting was the fact that Blondies predate the currently more popular chocolate brownie by a number of years. According to The Food Timeline site, the first recorded Brownie recipe, ca 1896, had no chocolate in it and would produce a treat very like today’s blonde brownies.
One of the most popular candies of the mid nineteenth century was butterscotch, and many of the ingredients in this early version of blondies were the same, only combined with other ingredients so that it could be baked into a cake-like product rather than candy treat.
As for as where blondies got their names, while no one knows for certain, The Food Timeline reports 3 possibilities
It might have been in honor of a woman named Mildred Brown Schrumpf, who was, among other things, a Nutritionist, Newspaper Columnist, Food Judge, Author and Cook (born 1903)
It might have been named after Palmer Cox’s cartoon elves, dubbed Brownies, ca 1887
It might borrowed its name from a Scottish confection called a broonie
And in honor of this sweet-themed day, I thought I’d share that early first recipe with you
1/3 cup butter 1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup Porto Rico molasses
1 egg well beaten
7/8 cup bread flour
1 cup pecan meat cut in pieces
Mix ingredients in order given
Bake in small, shallow fancy cake tins, garnishing top of each cake with one-half pecan.
So let’s hear it for the blonde brownie on its special day. (But I must confess to still preferring chocolate!)
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~And, since the heroine of my Dec 2013 release, A Family For Christmas, runs a sweet shop and very likely baked some of these very confections for her customers, I thought I'd just go ahead and give away a copy of this book to one person who leaves a comment here today!
Chance came from the big city to make it on his own despite a painful secret. But Eve's strength is giving him a confidence he never expected—and a new direction for his dream. With a little Christmas blessing, he'll dare to win her heart—and make their family one for a lifetime.