FINDING MR. RIGHT from Leigh Goff How do you know he’s the one? I’m a firm believer in one’s intuition. It’s the hidden sense that isn’t based on logic, but comes to us in rare moments of need. Call it a gut-feeling that many of us have had. It’s an understanding that comes from within and there’s no need to question it. I’m speaking from experience so when your inner voice says he’s a good guy, it might be worth listening. In my latest novel, Koush Hollow, Jenna falls for the local bad boy, but he isn’t so bad once she gets to see him more clearly. He’s passionate about the bayou, he cares about Jenna because he see beyond her troubling environment, and he’s honest in how he speaks. Ultimately, he makes Jenna want to be a better person and to strive to be more than a Pearl in her mom’s superficial social club. Here are my top five signs that he’s the one for you, and if these signs aren’t obvious and your intuition isn’t talking, I’ll explain. 1- He’s interested. He makes romantic gestures to let you know he’s into you. He sends you a bouquet of your favorite flowers. He leaves notes on your car windshield to cheer you up. He holds your hand when he senses you’re nervous. This means he isn’t afraid to show you that he wants more time with you. 2- He makes you laugh. Laughter is one of life’s simple pleasures. It could be a funny comment he makes when you wake up, or a silly joke he tells your friends over pizza. He’s a funny guy and he looks at life with a great sense of humor. He makes you want to spend time with him. It’s another sign that he’s interested in you. What’s not to like about that? 3- He remembers what you like. This is a gimme. You mentioned your favorite flavor of ice cream months ago at a Christmas party, surrounded by friends and loud music. You didn’t even know he heard you. Then, when you least expect it and you’re hiding at home with a terrible sore throat, he shows up with a pint of blueberry cheesecake gelato and you know this guy is something special. 4- He’s a good communicator. He makes good eye contact, he listens, and he asks questions. He doesn’t let you walk away from an argument without resolution. He knows it’s healthy to have different opinions, but it’s really healthy to talk them through and meet somewhere in the middle, and if that’s not possible, he’s okay to agree to disagree. Life gets tough and you need someone with good communication skills. 5- He makes you want to be a better person. You watch how he interacts with children, animals, and waiters and his kindness inspires you to be a bit more patient, smile more, or give a bigger tip, if you can afford it. He makes the world a better place to live in and you want to be by his side doing the same thing. Here is my Hope Chest Recipe just so you're ready when the right he walks into your life. Mr. Right’s Chicken Dinner 1 Whole chicken plus 2 chicken breasts 1 Pepperidge Farm Herb Seasoned Classic Stuffing 1 stick of butter 1 can of Campbell’s Cream of Chicken 1 can of Campbell’s Cream of Mushroom 2 cans of chicken broth Preheat oven to 350° F. Boil chicken and breasts for 20-30 minutes. Shred meat from the bone. Melt butter in a pot, then add stuffing mix. In a separate pot, add soups and broth and heat. Use a 9 x 13 dish to layer half the stuffing on bottom, shredded chicken, soup and finally the remaining stuffing. Cover dish with foil and then bake 20 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 20 minutes. Here's a little from my book to peak your interest.Where bayou magic abounds and all that glitters...is deadly.After her father’s untimely death, Jenna Ashby moves to Koush Hollow, a bayou town outside of New Orleans, dreading life with her wealthy mother.EXCERPT Hayden shook his head. “I shouldn’t expect someone like you to care.” “Like me? I’m not so different from you.” He cocked his hands on his hips and stared into my eyes. He concentrated, searching for something. “Jenna, what if that were true? How would that fly with your Pearl friends?” “What are saying?” “The night of the beach party—you stayed under the water for minutes. I thought you were drowning.” His gaze lowered to my mouth, sending a warm flutter of butterflies inside me. “Maybe you’re more like me than you ever thought possible.” Surprised, I pressed a hand to my stomach. I glanced back at the yacht club. “I-I have to go.” I stumbled into a walk. My mind raced. What was that look he gave me? He followed after and grabbed onto my hand. Lightning flickered from his touch and ignited my nerves. The shiver ran the length of my arm and down to my toes. My heart raced. I turned and looked at him. I wanted to feel his eyes on my mouth again. He held me fixed in his gaze. “Promise me if you decide to become a pearl girl, you’ll do it as an informed person.” His tone was deadly serious. Right there, I felt the weight of his concern. I dropped my gaze. “Hayden, I’m too smart to be a part of something that is ethically bankrupt and environmentally dangerous, if that’s what you’re worried about.” “Don’t let them change you into one of them.” I touched my hand to his cheek and traced the line of his jaw. “Do you think my mother and her friends are really part of a pollution conspiracy and a murder cover-up?” I asked referring to his childhood recollection. “Do you think I’d ever want to be a part of that?” He considered my argument for a brief second. “This is bigger than you, Jenna. It will suck you in, if you let it.” Mama appeared behind me, interrupting the discussion. “Everything okay here?” “Fine.” I breathed in and out as quietly as I could, waiting for my racing heart to settle down. “Hayden, this is my mother, Dr. Crossland. Mama, this is Hayden Black. We’re classmates and we were discussing a history assignment.” She dissected him with her eyes and everything about her expression told me she did not approve.
As the sixteen-year-old eco-warrior is introduced to the Diamonds & Pearls, her mother’s exclusive social club, she comes to the troubling realization that secrets are a way of life in Koush Hollow.
How do the Diamonds & Pearls look so young, where does their money come from, and why is life along the bayou disappearing?
As Jenna is drawn into their seductive world, her curiosity and concerns beg her to uncover the truth. However, in this town where mysticism abounds and secrets are deadly, the truth is not what Jenna could have ever imagined.
BUY LINKSwww.LeighGoff.com and follow her on Facebook and Twitter.
from Sharon Ledwith
A real crowd pleaser at small gatherings such as book clubs or intimate bridal and baby showers, this chocolatey, sweet treat will tempt even the most disciplined of us. If cherry is your go-to fruit that makes your mouth think you’ve swallowed a piece of heaven, then read on if you dare to concoct this sinful chunk of bliss.
CHOCOLATE CHERRY CHUNK LOAF
Preheat oven to 350° F (175° C or 165° for fan ovens, Gas Mark 4).
Grease a 2 lb. (8 ½ x 4 ¼ x 2 ½ inch) loaf pan.
Remove the pits from the cherries and cut each one in half. Place cherries in a small bowl, sprinkle the 1 teaspoon flour over top and toss gently.
Sift 1¼ cups flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl.
Stir in sugar, chocolate chips, and walnuts. Set dry ingredients aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together yogurt, eggs, vanilla, and oil.
Add yogurt mixture to dry ingredients. Beat with a wooden spoon until all the flour is mixed in and the batter is smooth.
Gently fold in the flour-coated cherries.
Pour batter into prepared loaf pan. Bake for 40-50 minutes or until cake tester inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool in pan for 20 minutes, then remove cake and place it on a wire rack to cool completely.
Pour icing sugar into a bowl. Whisk in maraschino cherry juice.
Gradually whisk in water, a drop or two at a time, until a smooth, drizzle-able consistency is reached.
Whisk in food coloring, if using.
While you’re waiting on your loaf to bake and cool, how about taking a break by delving into one of my books? May I suggest a visit to Fairy Falls, or if you’re feeling really adventurous, a trip back in time with The Last Timekeepers? Whichever you choose, either series will entertain and engage, pulling you into another time and a different place.
City born and bred, Hart Stewart possesses the gift of psychometry—the psychic ability to discover facts about an event or person by touching inanimate objects associated with them. Since his mother’s death, seventeen-year-old Hart has endured homelessness, and has learned ways to keep his illiteracy under wraps. He eventually learns of a great-aunt living in Fairy Falls, and decides to leave the only life he’s ever known for an uncertain future.
Diana MacGregor lives in Fairy Falls. Her mother was a victim of a senseless murder. Only Diana’s unanswered questions and her grief keeps her going, until Hart finds her mother’s lost ring and becomes a witness to her murder.
Through Hart’s psychic power, Diana gains hope for justice. Their investigation leads them into the corrupt world threatening Fairy Falls. To secure the town’s future, Hart and Diana must join forces to uncover the shocking truth, or they risk losing the true essence of Fairy Falls forever.
Sharon Ledwith is the author of the middle-grade/YA time travel series, THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS, and the teen psychic mystery series, MYSTERIOUS TALES FROM FAIRY FALLS. When not writing, researching, or revising, she enjoys reading, exercising, anything arcane, and an occasional dram of scotch. Sharon lives a serene, yet busy life in a southern tourist region of Ontario, Canada, with her hubby, one spoiled yellow Labrador and a moody calico cat.
Learn more about Sharon Ledwith on her website and blog. Stay connected on Facebook and Twitter, Goodreads, and Smashwords. Look up her Amazon Author page for a list of current books. Be sure to check out THE LAST TIMEKEEPERS TIME TRAVEL SERIES Facebook page.
This quick recipe is ideal for those days you are too busy to fuss. Add a salad and a loaf of crusty bread to round out dinner. After you assemble all the ingredients on your counter pop open a bottle of Soave white wine from the Veneto region in Italy to enjoy while you cook. It’s perfect for this meal.
|Photo by Jakub Kapusnak on Unsplash|
Halve the leeks lengthwise and cut into 1-inch pieces. Wash well to remove any sand grains.
Cut the artichokes lengthwise if large.
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat, add the leeks, and cook until soft but not browned, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Remove the leeks from skillet and set aside.
Increase heat to medium and add the artichokes. Cook about 3 minutes stirring often.
Return the leeks to skillet and toss to mix. Stir in the lemon juice, salt, and pepper.
Cook the linguine according to the package directions, reserving ½ cup of the pasta water.
Transfer pasta to a large bowl. Add vegetables and toss with half the Parmesan cheese. Add a little pasta water to moisten if necessary. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
Date Night Dinners, Meals to Make Together for a Romantic Evening, is an ideal hostess and holiday gift, or for anyone who wants to spice things up.
Taylor’s cookbooks, Date Night Dinners, Summer Sizzle, and Recipes to Create Holidays Extraordinaire are released by Toque & Dagger Publishing and available at all book vendors.
How about some relief from the stress and pressure of figuring out what to serve your hungry guests during holiday get-togethers, events, or celebrations?
Cue a holiday-inspired cookbook written by the following thirteen busy authors, of various ages and genres: Carol Browne, HL Carpenter, Sara Daniel, Dominique Eastwick, Leigh Goff, C.D. Hersh, Vonnie Hughes, Alicia Joseph, Emma Lane, Sharon Ledwith, Anne Montgomery, Chris Pavesic, and Sloane Taylor. These wonderful writers have created recipes that will make your life easy and simple when it comes time to prepare tantalizing appetizers, tasty beverages, mouth-watering cookies, and decadent desserts.
The ABCDs of Cooking with Writers is your go-to recipe book for entertaining over the holiday seasons, hosting events, or celebrating that special day. Compiled by Sloane Taylor—a gourmet cook in her own right—and designed by mother-daughter duo HL Carpenter, the included recipes have been tested and approved of by the most finicky family members. Oh, and did I mention that it is FREE?
So why not have your cake and eat it too? Yes, pun intended. You’ve got nothing to lose, and time to gain when you download The ABCDs of Cooking with Writers. There’s a recipe for every holiday, celebration, or event in your life. Give yourself a gift this holiday season with a cookbook from thirteen writers who share their favorite recipes and tips to help relieve the stress in your busy life.