Friday, October 30, 2009

What I'm Reading...

Le sigh....LOL

Bet you know what's coming, don't ya?

I've tried to be good...and I have been for a couple of weeks. But now, I'm back into the Troubleshooter's series. This is Max and Gina's story and one that I've wanted to read for a while. Gina is so much fun. Although Suzanne Brockmann has said she was the least well-behaved character she's written. She couldn't get her to co-operate in any way, and in reading this book, I believe it!

Here's the deats:

Cover Blurb: "Uncommon valor in the line of duty and unconditional devotion in the name of love are the salient qualities of the daring men and women who risk it all in the heart-pounding thrillers of New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Brockmann. Crafted with precision and power, her characters come alive with a depth of emotion few writers have achieved. Now, with Breaking Point, Brockmann breaks even further through the pack and delivers a stunning payload.

As commander of the nation’s most elite FBI counterterrorism unit, agent Max Bhagat leads by hard-driving example: pushing himself to the limit and beyond, taking no excuses, and putting absolutely nothing ahead of his work. That includes his deep feelings for Gina Vitagliano, the woman who won his admiration and his heart with her courage under fire. But when the shocking news reaches him that Gina has been killed in a terrorist bombing, nothing can keep Max from making a full investigation—and retribution—his top priority.

At the scene of the attack, however, Max gets an even bigger shock. Gina is still very much alive—but facing a fate even worse than death. Along with Molly Anderson, a fellow overseas relief worker, Gina has fallen into the hands of a killer who is bent on using both women to bait a deadly trap. His quarry? Grady Morant, a.k.a “Jones,” a notorious ex-Special Forces operative turned smuggler who made some very deadly enemies in the jungles of Southeast Asia . . . and has been running ever since. But with Molly’s life on the line, Jones is willing to forfeit his own to save the woman he loves.

Together with Max's top agent Jules Cassidy as their only backup, the unlikely allies plunge into a global hot zone of violence and corruption to make a deal with the devil. Not even Jones knows which ghosts from his past want him dead. But there's one thing he's sure of--there's very little his bloodthirsty enemies aren't willing to do.

Count on the intense action and raw honesty that Suzanne Brockmann consistently delivers, as she goes for broke in Breaking Point--and never looks back."

I hope it's a spooktacular weekend for everyone!!!

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Baked Honeycrisp Apples

4 Honeycrisp Apples
1/2 C brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 C dried cranberries
1/4 C chopped walnuts
4 Tbsp butter

Preheat oven to 400. Slice off top of apples and scoop out cores, leaving a well in the center. In a bowl, mix brown sugar, cinnamon, cranberries and walnuts until blended. Stuff each apple with 1/4 of the brown sugar mixture. Place apples in a deep baking dish, topping each with 1 Tbsp butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Fill bottom of pan with water and bake for 50-60 minutes, until apples are tender.

Hubby and I started Weight Watcher's yesterday. I think this would be really's fruit, right? LOL

Have a happy day!!
Peace and love,

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bill and Sam, two elderly friends, met in the park every day to feed the pigeons, watch the squirrels and discuss world problems.

One day Bill didn't show up. Sam didn't think much about it and figured maybe he had a cold or something. But after Bill hadn't shown up for a week or so, Sam really got worried. However, since the only time they ever got together was at the park, Sam didn't know where Bill lived, so he was unable to find out what had happened to him.

A month had passed, and Sam figured he had seen the last of Bill, but one day, Sam approached the park and -- lo and behold! -- there sat Bill! Sam was very excited and happy to see him and told him so. Then he said, 'For crying out loud Bill, what in the world happened to you?'

Bill replied, 'I have been in jail.'

'Jail?' cried Sam. 'What in the world for?'

'Well,' Bill said, 'you know Mary, that cute little blonde waitress at the coffee shop where I sometime go?'

'Yeah,' said Sam, 'I remember her. What about her?'

'Well, one day she filed rape charges against me; and, at 89 years old, I was so proud that when I got into court, I pled 'guilty.' The darn judge gave me 30 days for perjury.

Have a fantastic hump day!!!
Peace and love,

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

"Worry a little bit every day and in a lifetime you will lose a couple of years. If something is wrong, fix it if you can. But train yourself not to worry. Worry never fixes anything."

Mary Hemingway
1908-1986, Author and Journalist

Oh boy. I need to tattoo this someplace that I can see it on a regular basis. I am the world's worst at worrying. But I'm going to try to get better. I really, really am trying!!!

Have a great day!!
Peace and love,

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Baked Pesto Chicken


Baked Pesto Chicken:

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
½ c basil pesto
2 plum tomatoes
shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 400. Cover cookie sheet with foil. Put pesto and chicken in bowl. Toss until chicken is covered. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Place slices of tomato on top of chicken and sprinkle with cheese. Bake another 3-5 minutes.

Serve with a box of angel hair pasta and herbs and French bread.

Eat up!!

PS...I need to brag on my kidlet for a minute (I learn so much from my kids, especially when it comes to perseverence and tenacity!). His dad ran cross-country in high school and always talked about how much fun it was so kidlet decided he wanted to run cross-country. The first race he ran his time was around 32:00 (I think). I can't remember the exact time but I know it wasn't very good in his opinion. I was impressed that he'd finished without collapsing along the way - that would have been me.

Anyway, through out the season he managed to cut his time down to 24:15 - it's amazing that he cut so much time off from the first race. But you know how kids can be. Especially kids that you think are your friends. Especially, especially when those kids are running 2-3 minutes faster than you.

On Tuesday, 2 of his friends in particular were really ugly to him, teasing him about being the "slowest." Which isn't true, he runs about mid-pack, but it still hurt his feelings. As it would anyone. He decided he was going to cut his time down to under 23:00 minutes - they told him he couldn't do it.

When he hit the 1 mile mark yesterday his time was a little under 6:00 - off to a good start. I was excited and yelling, "You can do this. You know you can do this."

When he hit the 2 mile mark, his time was a little under 15:00 minutes. I knew better than to tell him the time so I kept up my, "You can do this. You have this PR (Personal record). YOU CAN DO THIS! - I called his dad with shaky fingers and said, "His 2 mile mark was a little under 15:00!!"

Dad's response: "What? He's normally there around 17:40, isn't he?"

Me, shaking with tears in my eyes, "I think so. OMG, I've gotta get to the finish line."

When I saw him coming down the final stretch the clock was just clicking over the 22:00 mark. Holy shit!!! And guess what? He's still ahead of one of those friends - the one who insisted he couldn't do it in under 23:00.

Finish line time: 22:49 !!! Wooo--hoooo!!!!!

This time when I called his dad, I was crying. And Grey looked like he was about to pass out. In fact, he was weaiving a little and I was really afraid he might go over. But that was okay! LOL

I'm so proud of him and, once again, he's taught me the value of determination.

OK...enough bragging. Thanks for indulging me!!

Peace and love,

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hump Day Humor

Today's Hump Day Humor is compliments of my kidlet. He kept telling me he had this video on You Tube he wanted me to watch, I kept putting him off. His sense of humor and mine, aren't exactly the same.

But this was great!!! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!!

Have a fantastic Wednesday!!!

Peace and love,

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Food For Thought...

"When you paint success pictures in your mind, you initiate an inner process whereby your attitudes, hopes, aspirations, and enthusiasm are elevated in response to an image of a more promising future. Every person who aspires must first sell themselves hope, the promise of a better life."

U.S. Andersen
Author of The Magic In Your Mind

Have a great day!!
Wishing you much peace and love,

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Barbecue Chicken Pizza

This recipe is from the Weight Watcher's 20 Minute Recipe Magazine. I just got the magazine so I haven't had a chance to try this recipe yet, but it sounds great and I'll probably fix it over the weekend.

1 (14 oz) Italian cheese-flavored pizza crust (such as Boboli Original)
Cooking spray
2 Cups chopped cooked chicken
2/3 Cups spicy barbecue sauce, divided
1/3 Cup slivered red onion
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 Cup (4 oz) pre-shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese

1. Preheat oven to 450
2. Place pizza crust on an un-greased baking sheet; lightly coat crust with cooking spray.
3. Combine chicken and 1/3 cup sauce in a small bowl; stir well. Spread remaining 1/3 Cup sauce evenly over pizza crust, leaving a 1" border. Top crust evenly with chicken mixture and remaining ingredients
4. Slide pizza off pan directly onto oven rack. Bake at 450 for 10 to 12 minutes or until the crust is crisp and cheese melts. Slide pizza from oven rack back onto pan using a spatula. Remove from oven, and cut into 8 slices.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 slice)

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes

If you're counting Weight Watcher's Points the point value is 6 points per slice.
Calories: 281; Fat: 6. g (Sat. fat 3.1 g); Protein: 19.5 g; Carbs: 34 g; Fiber: 1.1 g; Chol: 37 mg; Iron: 1.8 mg; Sodium: 606 mg; Calcium: 169 mg.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Hump Day Humor


I'm sure y'all have probably seen this but if not, it's too funny to miss so I'm posting it as a "just-in-case." It cracks me up how he goes from omniscient-broadcaster-voice to ghetto in a heartbeat. Enjoy!!

Hope it's a beatiful day!!

Peace and love,

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Food For Thought...

I've heard his story has been circulating via e-mail so some of you may have heard/read it before. I hadn't received it until recently but I first heard it years ago. Like, ten or twelve years ago. I'd forgotten about it and was glad to receive it via e-mail. Hope you enjoy.

The Cookie Thief by Valerie Cox

A woman was waiting at an airport one night
With several long hours before her flight

She hunted for a book in the airport shop
Bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop

She was engrossed in her book but happened to see
That the man beside her as bold as could be

Grabbed a cookie or two from the bag between
Which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene

She munched cookies and watched the clock
As this gutsy cookie thief diminished her stock

She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by
Thinking "If I wasn't so nice I'd blacken his eye"

With each cookie she took he took one too
And when only one was left she wondered what he'd do

With a smile on his face and a nervous laugh
He took the last cookie and broke it in half

He offered her half as he ate the other
She snatched it from him and thought "Oh brother

This guy has some nerve and he's also rude
Why he didn't even show any gratitude"

She had never known when she had been so galled
And sighed with relief when her flight was called

She gathered her belongings and headed for the gate
Refusing to look back at the thieving ingrate

She boarded the plane and sank in her seat
Then sought her book which was almost complete

As she reached in her baggage she gasped with surprise
There was her bag of cookies in front of her eyes

"If mine are here" she moaned with despair
"Then the others were his and he tried to share"

Too late to apologize she realized with grief
That she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief

Have a wonderfully blessed day!!
Peace and love,

Friday, October 9, 2009

What I'm Reading...


I'm hopeless. It's an affliction and I don't know what to do!!! As you know, I've been working my way through Suzanne Brockmann's Troubleshooter series. I had gotten my tbr pile down to 1.

Well, I picked it up and now I can't put the damn thing down. I think this might be my favorite so far. The hero is the extremely wounded Jimmy Nash and I have a thing for wounded heroes. I like to read about them and I love to write about them.

And so, naturally, I've gotten entrenched into this book and have totally neglected my own writing. What's worse. I went to B&N today and got the next 4 in the series!!

See above comment about being hopeless.

Here's the cover and the blurb from her website:

Jimmy Nash has already lived two lives--and he can’t talk about either of them. Formerly an operative of a top secret government agency, he has found a new job with a shadowy company called Troubleshooters, Incorporated. Created by a former Navy SEAL, Troubleshooters, Inc. helps anyone in desperate need--which provides a perfect cover for its other, more perilous objective: covert special operations.

Now Nash and a quickly assembled team of expert operators have come to the earthquake-ravaged country of Kazbekistan in the guise of relief workers. There, amid the dust and death, in a land of blood red sunsets and ancient blood feuds, they must track down a missing laptop computer that may hold secrets vital to national security.

To get it done, Nash does what he does best: break every rule in the book and manipulate those who can help him get what he needs. But this time, Nash may have met his match in Tess Bailey, a Troubleshooters operative with all the right instincts--and zero field experience. The deep attraction between them is immediate... and potentially volatile, with risk at every turn.

Now these two professionals must play out their dangerous games in the world’s most dangerous place-- isolated from their own government, cutting deals with people they can’t trust, and guarding forbidden passions that threaten to compromise their crucial mission.

A full-throttle adventure teamed with heated emotion, Flashpoint proves that Suzanne Brockmann can spin suspense unlike any other author working today.

I really, really loved this book and am sure I'll go back and read it. Probably as soon as I've finished the series (if not before). It was great entertainment as a reader, but as a writer I'm fascinated by her ability to tell a story and get so deep into POV.

Hope you all have a fantastic weekend!!

Wishing you much peace and love,

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tomato Sauced Pork Chops

6 boneless pork loin chops, cut 3/4" thick
1 Tablespoon cooking oil
1 envelope (1/2 of a 2 oz. package) onion soup mix
1 15 oz can Great Northern or small white beans, rinsed and drained
1 14 1/2 oz can diced tomatoes with basil, oregano, and garlic, undrained
2 Tablespoons dry red wine or water

1. Trim fat from chops. In a 12" skillet, brown chops in hot oil. Drain off fat. Transfer chops to a 3 1/2 or 4 quart slow cooker. Sprinkle chops with dry onion soup mix. Pour beans and undrained tomatoes over chops in slow cooker.

2. Cove and cook on low-heat setting for 7 to 8 hours or on high-heat setting 3 1/2 to 4 hours.

3. Transfer chops to a serving platter. Stir wine into bean mixture. Using a slotted spoon, spoon beans and tomatoes over chops; discard cooking liquid.

Bon apetite!
Peace and love,

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Food For Thought...

"Individuals who are positive in their thoughts always tend to look upon the brighter side of life. With their faces turned toward the sunshine, they attempt to see the good, even in the bad. Such individuals habitually think thoughts of a positive nature and they are a blessing to the world. They are in a Positive Vibration, and therefore attract other positive personalities to them."

Bob Proctor
Author and Speaker

Also, I wanted to let you know that my prolific writing buddy and friend, Cara Carnes, has a new release out today from Loose-ID. I tried to get the guys to come back and celebrate with us again, but they're still worn out from their last visit.

Happy Tuesday!!
Peace and love,

Friday, October 2, 2009

What I'm Reading...

I'm not reading much, but occasionally I do reward myself if I've met my word count goals by reading a few pages. This is the latest in the Dead End Dating Series by Kimberly Raye.

Product Description from Amazon:

Divalicious darling of the undead Lil Marchette is this close to finding her own happily-ever-after with hunky live-in bounty hunter Ty Bonner. Unfortunately, reality is biting back in a big way. Lil’s got mounting bills to pay and clients to keep happily hooked up courtesy of Dead End Dating, the ultimate meet-and-greet for New York’s fanged, furry, and fabulous. But leave it to a drop-dead gorgeous eight-hundred-year-old warlock with a big-girl fetish to take the biggest chomp out of Lil’s happiness by kidnapping Esther Crutch, one of Lil’s plus-size clients, now stamped as Grade-A Ritual Meat.

Leaving Ty warming the bed, Lil races to rescue Esther’s curvy behind before she’s turned into a Mayan sacrifice. The trail leads to Texas–hell by any other name–and as if dust, demons, and hopelessly outdated fashion weren’t bad enough, fate gives Lil an unexpected partner: her mom, who is on a mission to meddle (as usual) and grab a little mother-daughter time. Will Lil remain calm in the face of smotherly love and save Esther–or will her client bite the dust?

What are you guys reading today?

I hope it's a fantastic and safe weekend for everyone!!
Peace and love,

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Smoky Barbecued Beef Brisket

1 2-3 pound fresh beef brisket
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon celery seeds
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 Cup ketchup
1/2 Cup chili sauce
1/4 Cup packed brown sugar
2 Tablespoons vinegar
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons liquid smoke
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/3 Cup cold water
3 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

1. Trim fat from meat. Cut meat to fit into a 3 1/2 or 4 quart slow cooker. In a small bowl, combine chili powder, garlic powder, celery seeds, and pepper. Sprinkle chili powder mixture evenly over meat; rub with you fingers. Place meat in slow cooker.

2. In a medium bowl, combine ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, liquid smoke, and dry mustard. Pour over meat in a cooker.

3. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 10 to 11 hours or on high-heat setting for 5 to 5 1/2 hours.

4. Remove meat from cooker, reserving cooking juices. Skim fat off cooking juices, measure 2 1/2 Cups of the cooking juices. For sauce: In a medium saucepan, stir the cold water into flour; add the 2 1/2 Cups cooking juices. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; cook and stir for 1 minute more. Cutting across the grain, cut the meat into thin slices. Serve sauce with meat.

Peace and love,