Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Easy Cake Recipe by Cindy Flores Martinez


Have you ever tried Tres Leches Cake? It’s one of my favorite cakes, and I have an easy recipe to share.

In my latest Christmas story, Mia’s Gift, which is part of the Small-Town Christmas Wishes Series, my heroine Mia owns a cupcake shop with her best friend Diane. In a scene, Mia talks about having baked Tres Leches Cupcakes as a child.

Tres Leches means “three milks”, and there are many cake recipes that start from scratch, but my easy recipe makes a light and yet flavorful cake that’s just as delicious.

Easy Tres Leches Cake

1 box yellow cake mix (and the ingredients to bake the cake)

1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk

1 cup heavy whipping cream

1 container whipped topping

Directions

Bake the cake according to the instructions on the box in a rectangular pan. Let it cool.

Poke holes all over the top of the cake with a large fork.

In a bowl, mix the three milks together and spoon the mixture over the cake letting it soak through. Some recipes say to use the whole mixture, but I use only half.

Refrigerate for a half hour and spread whipped topping over the top.

Optional: garnish with strawberries or other fruit and/or cinnamon

Enjoy!

FREE on Kindle Unlimited
Where to buy: AMAZON


Cindy Flores Martinez is a USA Today bestselling author. She writes Christian Romance. She has an MFA in Creative Writing with an emphasis in Screenwriting. Her debut novel, Mail-Order Groom, started as a screenplay and movie project, which she shopped around Hollywood, New York, and other parts of the world. You can learn more about her at www.cindyfloresmartinez.com

Monday, November 11, 2019

November is the Month of Gratitude by Josie Riviera

For many of us, November is the month when we celebrate Thanksgiving.
But, how can we nurture gratitude in our hearts?
Here are some simple ideas that may jump-start the season of giving.
Say "thank you" more often. Your loved ones do many things for you during the day, whether it's walking the dog, preparing meals, or brewing the morning coffee. Express your gratitude by saying "thank you" for everyday, mundane tasks.

Then, take the time to share with people how much joy they give you.
We've all heard the term, "Count your blessings," and are aware that many simple items in our lives are considered luxuries elsewhere.

So, give a name to your blessings, write them down, and share these blessings with your friends and family.

Many of my readers are aware that my daughter lives in Ireland, and I won't see her for Thanksgiving. However, I'll make a point to call her, and let her know she is missed and loved.

What are you grateful for? Please leave your comments below.
 
I'm grateful for all our readers and wish everyone who celebrates a wonderful, blessed Thanksgiving.



 
Do you love sweet emotional romances and a great bargain?
Leading Hearts: First Books in Series,is a new release! 3 full-length stories in one bundle.


All books in my sweet romance bundle are first in the series.

Bundle includes:
A Love Song To Cherish, (contemporary inspirational romance tackles addiction)
Seeking Fortune, (a reader favorite Romany/Gypsy inspirational romance,) and
 1-800-CUPID, (home-flipping series.)

These books have something for everyone.


Snag your ebook copy at the special, introductory pre-order price of only 99¢ for all 3 books.
Also available in Paperback.


Josie Riviera is a USA TODAY bestselling author of contemporary, inspirational, and historical sweet romances that read like Hallmark movies. She lives in the Charlotte, NC, area with her wonderfully supportive husband. They share their home with an adorable shih tzu, who constantly needs grooming, and live in an old house forever needing renovations.
To see her latest family adventures, follow her on Instagram.
And remember to join our Sweet Romance Reads Facebook cafe.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

New Christmas Books from Sweet Romance Read Authors #sweetromance






Christmas Next Door
Vickie McDonough & Susan Page Davis

Visit an Old West Texas town where a mysterious benefactor leaves gifts each Christmas, but also where four pairs of neighbors battle over hearsay, secrets, and mysteries.
THE MARSHAL NEXT DOOR by Vickie McDonough (1885)
The marshal’s deputy claims he’s seen the marshal’s young sisters snooping around businesses where there have been recent thefts. Marshal Yates can’t believe his sisters might be the thieves and seeks out a woman to mentor the impetuous teenagers. But when evidence is found against his sisters, will he have to arrest them at Christmastime?

THE SPINSTERS NEXT DOOR by Susan Page Davis (1886)
THE OUTLAW NEXT DOOR by Vickie McDonough (1887)
THE GUNSLINGER NEXT DOOR by Susan Page Davis (1888)



Christmas is the season of giving, but Sara isn’t sure she is up to the task.
Playing secret angel in high school was fun, and now, years later, Sara has the opportunity to do it once more on a bigger scale. She enlists the help of Gabe, her long-time best friend, to come up with a deserving recipient. But something is off with Gabe—he’s more attentive than usual.
The Christmas season has put Gabe in a reflective mood. His evaluation of his life has left him lonely and wanting more. But can his heart have its desire? That’s up to Sara.

Can these two long-time best friends navigate their changing relationship, or will the romance Grinch steal their Christmas joy?

Available exclusively on Amazon so can read it for free with Kindle Unlimited. 



Could granting a child's simple wish change a family's future?

Friendship, memories and wishes are powerful things and in the small town of Snowflake, Colorado they combine to form a memorial to a lost friend. Following her death, Charity Hart left six of her close high school friends, including Caro Price, fifteen hundred dollars each and an assignment to use that money to grant someone else’s secret wish by Christmas.

Temporarily back in Snowflake to help her beloved grandmother recover from an illness, nurse practitioner Caro is on the hunt for a recipient for her secret angel gift. A chance encounter in a specialty store focuses Caro’s interest on a red-headed little girl fascinated by a nativity scene.

Caro’s grandmother has matchmaking on her mind as she pushes Caro and her neighbor, Simon Novak, together. It turns out that Simon coaches the little redhead’s older brother at the high school. With Simon’s help, Caro tries to learn more about the family and it quickly becomes apparent that the widowed mother and her two children are struggling financially. But is there more going on than meets the eye, for Caro sees flashes of fear in their eyes.

Christmas is the season of wishes, and Caro, with God's guidance, is determined to make one little girl’s dream a reality! And, maybe, just maybe, fulfill a dream of her own!


Available exclusively on Amazon. Read FREE with Kindle Unlimited. 




An Act of Love
By Margaret Daley
When Dr. Max Connors discovers he has a thirteen-year-old daughter who was adopted by a family years ago, he feels betrayed. He locates where his daughter lives and decides to move to Tallgrass, Oklahoma, although he doesn’t know if he will reveal who he is. Rachel Howard, the widowed mother, is struggling with raising her daughter, Taylor, who has problems that interfere with her schooling. As neighbors, Max becomes involved with Rachel and Taylor and ends up helping them when he can. As Christmas nears and his feelings toward Rachel grow, Max must make a decision. Will Max’s secret destroy his dream to have a family?

Amazon


Mia's Gift
By Cindy Flores Martinez

Mia Rosa is thinking of leaving Snowflake, Colorado for good. Her cupcake shop on Main Street isn’t doing well, and seeing her ex-fiancé around town is awkward. When she receives a letter from her old high school friend, Charity Hart, asking her to be a secret angel, she’s convinced that she can’t go through with it. But Mia soon learns that handsome Jesse Quinn and his fifteen-year-old niece, Kristi, are in desperate need of a miracle. The group home where Kristi lives is shutting down, and no other foster homes are available in Snowflake. Will Mia be able to secretly grant Jesse and Kristi’s wish for Kristi to stay in the town she calls home?

FREE with Kindle Unlimited

https://www.amazon.com/Mias-Gift-Small-Town-Christmas-Wishes-ebook/dp/B07X9GFHL7

Saturday, November 9, 2019

Gratitude... by Christine Bush


It’s that time of year when Thanksgiving is right around the corner.  The leaves have turned, the temperature is dropping, and it’s almost here.

I think about gratitude a lot, all through the year, but I seem to really focus on it at Thanksgiving time.  Even when life has its troubles and challengers, as this year sure has had for my family, we are blessed.  We have so much to be thankful for. It's good to remember that.

I have a dear friend named Karen, who challenges us to be extra mindful of gratitude every November.  She encourages us to post additions to a giant daily “gratitude list” on line, at least three things per day. No repeats.  I love this.

The start is simple. Family, friends, God, adequate food and shelter are easy to list.  But as the days pass, I have to be more aware specifically of the things around me (remember, no repeats!) Things like the community soccer field where my grandson jubilantly plays.  And his super enthusiastic volunteer coach who is giving him amazing experiences.

And then there’s the  little lady down the street in the house on the corner who spends HOURS making the most beautiful gardens, in every season.  I enjoy the view every time I go by. Exquisite.  I don’t even know this lady, but the awareness of this gratitude is convicting me to stop by and say hi and thanks, next time I see her out there.

The gratitude list goes on. I list mine, and read others. It’s inspiring. Motivation. Uplifting. 

Why?

I’m clearly seeing that it’s next to impossible to be overwhelmed by sadness or depression when you HAVE to keep your mind focused on finding three new things to be grateful for each day.  Gratitude really makes me happy, it seems.

Today?

1.      I’m grateful for my fellow writers, and the joyful, challenging stories they write that are so comforting and encouraging. And fun!

2.      I’m grateful for the gift and motivation to write my own stories, to keep my creative juices flowing.
 

3.      I’m grateful for Amazon Prime free shipping (grin).  Because I order a LOT of books!

 How about you? What are you grateful for today? I’d love to hear!
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!   Love, Christine

 

Christine Bush is a USA Today Bestselling author of romance, romantic mystery, and suspense.  She can be found living in the Lehigh Valley in Pennsylvania with her husband and 2 lazy cats, and spending time with her 14 grandchildren.   When she’s not writing, she’s teaching Psychology at a local college, and working with clients in her private practice as a Marriage and Family Therapist. She loves to hear from readers and writers!

Christine's  “Sunny Smile” is a sweet romantic mystery set on the Navajo reservation!


Friday, November 8, 2019

Try These Recipes For Thanksgiving by Kristin Wallace

It's November which means Thanksgiving is almost here. If you’re still deciding on a menu for the big day, I have a couple to share with you that you will love! 

Sweet Potato Casserole 

Ingredients:
3 cups mashed sweet potato
1cup sugar
½ cup milk
1/3 cut butter softened
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla

Blend everything together until it is smooth and creamy. Pour into a oven safe baking dish.

Topping:
1 cup chopped nuts (Use pecans or almonds. I prefer pecans.)
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup melted butter

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the melted butter and stir until it is moist. If it’s too runny or goopy add a little flour to thicken. Crumble the mixture in chunks on top so it covers the entire surface.

Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes

Smashed Potatoes

What is Thanksgiving without mashed potatoes? We make these in my house every year, and they are delicious. 

Ingredients:
1 -1½ lbs. of Yukon Gold potatoes (unpeeled)
½ tsp. of salt
4 Tbsp. heavy cream
2 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. milk
Salt & Pepper

Boil potatoes in a large pot, with a little bit of salt. Cook for about 15-20 minutes until you can poke them easily with a fork. 

Drain water and let the potatoes sit for a few minutes. Peel the potatoes, leaving some of the skin on as you go. Cut up potatoes and put them in a large bowl. Add the butter, milk and cream and beat until everything is smooth. Use salt and pepper to taste.

Derby Pie

What's Thanksgiving without pie? The last dish is for Kentucky Derby Pie. If you like chocolate you will love this.

Ingredients:
½ cup melted butter
1 cup sugar
½ cup flour
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. vanilla
¾ cup chocolate chips
¾ cup nuts (walnuts or pecans)
9 inch unbaked pie crust or shell

Combine all ingredients and mix well. Pour into the pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes or until the top is browned. DEVOUR!

Hope your holiday is DELICIOUS!


Kristin Wallace is the USA Today Best Selling Author of inspirational and sweet contemporary romance filled with “Love, Laughter and a Leap of Faith”. Her latest book, SECOND CHANCE HERO, part of the Palm Cove Tales is available now. 


AMAZON  /  APPLE BOOKS  /  B&N   /   KOBO 




Thursday, November 7, 2019

Another Road Trip with Jean C. Gordon


I'm just back from the Rebels and Readers 2019 Author event in Huntington, WV. (Who can find me?) What a great group of authors and readers. My only disappointment was a lack of historical romance authors. Although I write contemporary romance, I really like to read historical novels -- romance and non-romance. I love history and have a few favorite time period, one of which is the US Civil War period.

So of course, we had to check out the Guyandotte Civil War Days re-enactment that just happened to be last weekend when we were in Huntington. We've been to two re-enactments in Western New York and Eastern New York, and wanted to see things from the other side. We've also been to Gettysburg and Chickamauga Battlefields. 

Unfortunately, we weren't able to fit in any of the scheduled re-enactments in Huntington, but we visited the camps.




Have you ever seen a battle re-enactment? Have a favorite historical period?

Another of my favorite periods is 17th-18th century Scotland. And look what I found at the readers event -- cover model Scott Nova. 


For those of you who've read my Sweet Horizons, what do you think about Scott as Eric Slade if I do his story as my next Indigo Bay book?


And if you haven't read it, check out Sweet Horizons on Amazon, B&N, Apple Books, or Kobo.



For My New Releases
Follow me on BookBub Sign up for my Readers Newsletter 
Visit my Website 
Facebook: JeanCGordon.author 
Twitter: @JeanCGordon

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Making changes...and chaffles! Roxanne Rustand

When I developed a yearning to be a writer, it seemed like an impossible goal. I couldn't imagine actually "getting the call" from an editor. During those next five years, give or take, it seemed like an insurmountable barrier--like scaling Mount Everest barefoot. In the winter. But it also seemed as if once over that first peak, the process would be easier.  Surely then I would have learned the necessary skills! I was so naive. I didn't realize that the learning process would continue over the years--which has actually made it all so much more interesting, fun and challenging. Even after twenty years of writing for Love Inspired and other Harlequin lines, I never cease to be fascinated by all that I don't know, and the ways I want to become better.

In September I attended the Novelists Inc annual conference and also the the all-day pre-conference "Un-con" where authors discuss all aspects of being published; sharing what works (or doesn't work) for them. I couldn't take notes fast enough--and by the end of the week, I had filled a spiral notebook. It was wonderful!

I've been learning in other ways this fall.  That annual resolution for trying to lose weight usually lasts a day at best, because I'm an avid cook.  I love experimenting, love cooking for family and, well...love eating, too. LOL! There are two tall sets of bookshelves in the kitchen plus a smaller one, crammed with over three hundred cookbooks that I've collected over the years, and I subscribe to a number of cooking magazines as well.  I love trying out new ethnic restaurants, Do you have an engrossing hobby?  It might be better for me if mine didn't involve calories!  :)


At any rate, I finally heeded my doctor's advice and got more serious about health at the end of August.  Because so many friends have found success with a low carb diet, I've been trying that. And, despite the siren's call of my favorite cookbooks on the shelves and the glossy food magazines that arrive every month, I've found it fun to learn about a new way of thinking.

For instance, I had no idea that there were a number of Facebook groups devoted to low carb eating--and a number of groups are devoted to "chaffles." A new word in my lexicon, but instead of experimenting with a new souffle or unique versions of creme brulee, I've been experimenting with these sweet or savory mini-waffles that have almost no carbs (around 1-3 grams) and can used as, well, a waffle--or as a sub for bread. Or, with sweetener and flavorings, a treat!


Here are the pumpkin-shaped chaffles I made this morning, with this tiny waffle iron. The recipe is so simple, and one of these cuties is just 67 calories, 5 grams of protein and 1 gram of carbohydrate. Two could be a sandwich!

CHAFFLES
1/2 cup shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
1 egg
Pinch of salt
1 Tbsp almond flour
Seasonings of choice

This morning I added lemon zest, pumpkin pie spice, and a bit of sweetener, but the options for sweet or savory versions are endless.

What do you enjoy doing?  Have you developed new interests over the years?  Have you tried making positive health changes lately? I would love to hear about what you have been doing!

Leave a comment and you'll be entered in a drawing for my new Love Inspired novel, SNOWBOUND WITH THE COWBOY, which will be out in late December!

All the best,
Roxanne Rustand



Sunday, November 3, 2019

Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter #Recipe

I recently made butternut squash ravioli and I cheated. Rather than taking the time to make my own fresh pasta, I picked up a package of won ton wraps at the grocery story. These Ravioli were utterly delicious! I hope you’ll try this super quick method. No one will notice that you didn’t make your own pasta.

Butternut Squash Ravioli
Makes about 48

1 butternut squash, about 2 1/2 lbs
1 tablespoon olive oil, for roasting the squash
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
1 12 ounce package of won ton wraps

Sage Brown Butter

1/4 cup butter
10 fresh sage leaves

Directions:

For the ravioli:
1.     Preheat oven to 400°. Carefully cut the squash in half and scoop out the seeds. Discard seeds. Rub squash with olive oil and roast, cut side down, until soft when poked with a knife, about 35-45 minutes. Let cool and then scrape squash flesh out of the peel and place in a bowl. Discard peel.
2.     Mash the squash and add Parmesan cheese, garlic powder, onion powder, sage, cinnamon, salt and pepper. Stir until thoroughly combined.
3.     Fill each wan ton wrap with a heaping teaspoon of squash filling. Moisten the edges of the wrap with water and fold into a triangle, sealing edges tightly. Continue until all wraps are filled. (Don’t be surprised if you run out of filling or if you have some filling left over. It all depends on how large the squash is.)
4.     To cook: Fill a pot with 2 quarts of water and bring to a boil. Add about a tablespoon of salt to boiling water, and then gently drop the ravioli into the water. Simmer for 4-5 minutes. The ravioli are done when they float to the surface. Don’t overcrowd the pot. Cook in batches. Drain with a slotted spoon and place on a warm platter. Serve with Sage Brown Butter.
5.  Optional serving suggestion: After ravioli have been simmered and drained, fry them in olive oil, 3 minutes on each side, to give them a crispy texture. Mmmm.

For the Sage Brown Butter:


1.     Place butter and sage leaves to a small sauce pan. Cook over medium low heat until the milk solids turn brown, about 10-15 minutes. Do not overcook. You want brown butter, not burned butter.
2.     Pour butter sauce over the ravioli and serve.


Enjoy!

Please look for my newest release:

Available Nov 5th! #Ad 
You can preorder it today by clicking on the book cover below.

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Land Rush Dreams by Vickie McDonough


I was recently on a Facebook party promoting my Land Rush Dreams series, and I was surprised to learn how many people had never heard of the Oklahoma land runs. So, let me enlighten you, in case you haven't heard of them either.

Actual Land Rush Image, public domain
There were seven land runs in Oklahoma, but by far, the most well-known were the 1889 and the 1893 runs. The first occurred on April 22nd, 1889, which led to the settling of the Canadian, Cleveland, Kingfisher, Logan, Oklahoma, and Payne counties in Oklahoma. Nearly two million acres of Unassigned Indian Lands were claimed in a single day. The terms "Boomer," Eighty-Niners" and "Sooner" were birthed during the days before this run. Now you know where the Oklahoma Sooners from the University of Oklahoma got their name. #BoomerSooner.

The Land Run of September 16, 1893, was known as the Cherokee Strip Land Run. It opened 8,144,682.91 acres to settlement. The land was purchased from the Cherokees. It was the largest land run in U.S. history, four times larger than the Land Rush of 1889. 

That's a very brief overview. The land runs proved to be too chaotic, so the government they switched over to land lotteries to settle the final Unassigned Indian Lands. In my Land Rush Dreams series, I feature both of the land runs mentioned above and the land lottery. I always enjoy mixing real-life history with fictional stories.


Just $1.99 for a limited on Kindle / #FreeKU

Gabriel's Atonement

Land Rush Dreams, book 1
Features the Land Run of 1889

All Gabriel Coulter ever wanted was to live a comfortable life as a successful gambler, but a confrontation with a disgruntled cowboy who’d just lost his monthly pay to Gabe leads to a family man dying in his arms. Even though it was self-defense, the only way Gabe knows to get rid of his guilt is to return the money he won to the man’s wife.

Lara Talbot sees Gabe as a derelict like her husband and wants nothing to do with him--not even the much-needed money he's offered her. But as she struggles to provide for her family and makes plans to claim property in the upcoming Oklahoma land rush in hopes of finally having a permanent home, she wonders if God might have sent the meddling man to help.


Click here to purchase



Joline's Redemption
Land Rush Dreams book 2
Features the Cherokee Strip Land Rush




Sarah's Surrender
Land Rush Dreams book 3
Features the Oklahoma Land Lottery

Friday, November 1, 2019

LYN COTE ASKS Print or Ebooks? (And Special for Nook Readers!)


In my last newsletter I asked the question: Do you prefer print or ebooks. Here are some representative replies that sum up all the different ones:

Carol S wrote:
I prefer real books over ebooks. A real book in hand feels better than an ereader & doesn't run out of battery life. Unfortunately, it also takes up physical space on a shelf & costs more, so I have a lot more ebooks than physical book


Denise wrote:
Hi Lyn
Although I love having a book in my hands many books are not available here in my country.
And, many of them are too expensive now as our currency is not doing too well.
But, it has been wonderful to get all of them on my Kindle. 
Also my eyes are not that good these day and with a kindle I can enlarge the type to suit me.
Also, if I had to buy all the books that I have on my Kindle I would have to have a library!
So, although I love books my Kindle has become my best friend!  :D
Denise Port Elizabeth, South Africa

"Pat wrote:
I prefer ebooks. I had cataract surgery last year.
I have to have light right on books to read them
now. Ebooks print is darker so easier to see. I can
read it in bed at night if I’m awake & my phone is
easier to hold than a book. Pat

Cheryl wrote:
Hello,
I just received my newsletter and saw your question for your readers. I enjoy reading both print books as well as ebooks. If you had asked me these questions 6 months to a year ago, I would’ve said print books. Lately, however, I’ve really gotten into ebooks. I downloaded the  Kindle for iPhone app and I absolutely love it. I take my phone with me everywhere I go so I don’t have the added weight of a book to lug around. When my son was little I used to carry all of his necessities plus my phone and a book. I wish I had discovered ebooks way back then. I could’ve saved my back and as an unnecessary workout lol.
Don’t get me wrong I still enjoy going to the library to borrow print books but with the winter months coming up I’ll be sticking to ebooks for a while.
Anyhow, I’ve rambled on long enough. I’m enjoying reading your newsletters so please keep them coming.
Happy writing,
Cheryl

Lyn here- I appreciate your responses. But I need to let you in on why ebooks are so plentiful and print books are less available. In 2007 Amazon released the first Kindle.  But not long after that happened, the Borders and Waldenbook stores that had been in nearly every mall in the US folded. Take a moment and think about how that impacted publishers and authors. They lost HUGE amounts of selling space. Since then, Barnes & Noble has been near bankruptcy and has shut many stores and has reduced the bookshelf space in favor of toys, etc. Walmart is another major bookstore and it has also begun to reduce the space it holds for book sales. So authors and publishers have moved to ebooks which don’t take up physical shelf space in a store. I don’t expect this trend to change. Market forces are at work. So now you know--the rest of the story.

And I wanted to share this photo with you.
 This is what I see when I look out my window, I am blessed. And below is a special offer for Nook Readers!--Lyn 


One ebook FREE everywhere and one FREE only for Nook Readers! Oct 30 to Nov 3, 2009 
If you enjoy stories set in the 1920’s through World War Two, these two books: book are for you!They are first and second books in my “The Carlyle Women” series. Meant for Me is always free (on all online retailers). But book 2 Had to Be You is free only on NookBooks. Please click this link and then enter this code when purchasing the book. BNPH2BU1119 Feel free to share this code till it expires. 

Book 1  Meant for Me-When a handsome stranger about to leave for war proposes elopement, Chloe, the perfect Southern lady, runs away to 1917 New York City. "Romance of epic proportions, absorbing and satisfying,”

Book 2 Had to Be You--
Coming of age in the deep Depression, Bette faces a troubled world. When the world war ends, which will she choose--the young man she fell in love with as a girl or the man who taught her how to be a spy?

The Carlyle Women-four generations, 
each facing the challenges of her time 
and each harboring her own painful secret~