Tuesday, July 10, 2018

The Road To Magnolia Glen

Hello, my sweet and wonderful friends!
HOW ARE YOU?
I sincerely hope you are enjoying your summer days.
Playing in the warm sunshine,
loving on your family,
and taking quiet moments to simply breathe it all in. . .
the blessings, the laughter, the memories.

All is well here with myself and my family.
Many of you have written to make sure I am okay
since I have not posted in quite a while. . .bless you!
Your love and thoughtfulness greatly touched my heart
and I can't thank you enough for thinking of me.
Since May, my days have simply filled up with summer activities
which caused me to pull away from the computer.
I must confess that I thoroughly enjoyed "unplugging" from the Internet.
In a nutshell, my days have been filled with playing baseball with my son,
going to Rockies baseball games, fishing,
splashing around in the pool, hiking the trails,
jeeping around the mountains, and having picnics in fields of wildflowers.








Oh, and did I mention my husband and I have been working on our house. . .
lots of staining and repairs along with replacing windows and trim.
We are hoping to put a new roof on before fall arrives.

I have been able to read only a couple of books
during the last month or so and I thought I would share them with you.
Normally I read at night for 2 - 3 hours,
but I have noticed lately I fall into bed exhausted from having a full day in the sun.
How about you, my friends, have you been keeping your nose buried in a book?

A couple of weeks ago I finished The Road to Magnolia Glen.
It's the second book in the Natchez Trace series.

About The Book
Bitter since his eldest brother abandoned their family in Ireland, 
Quinn O'Shea travels to Natchez, Mississippi, 
ready to shuck the weight of his duty and set off on an adventure of his own. 
It's time Connor, as head of the family, took responsibility for their younger siblings. 
While aboard ship, a run-in with three Irish sisters lands Quinn in the role of reluctant savior. 
Though it may delay his plans, he cannot abandon the Young sisters, 
especially the tenacious yet kind Kiera.
Upon arriving in the colonies, 
Kiera Young prepares to meet her intended and begin her new life. 
But she soon discovers the marriage her brother-in-law arranged was never meant to be, 
and a far more sinister deal was negotiated for her and her sisters.
Quinn offers to escort his charges safely to Breeze Hill Plantation and his brother's care, 
fully intending to seek his freedom elsewhere. 
But the longer he remains, the greater his feelings toward Kiera grow 
and the more he comes to realize true freedom might be found in sacrifice.





My Thoughts
Like I said, this book is the second in the Natchez Trace series
and yes, I would recommend reading the first one before diving into
The Road to Magnolia Glen.

The setting for The Road to Magnolia Glen
is simply lovely and absolute perfection. . .
beautiful in its own quaint and delightful way.
The characters will draw the reader in
especially Quinn with his Irish accent.
Oh, how I loved the Irish brogue. . .
I could almost hear it when I read the melodic words.

I felt the story began with a lot of excitement
and I must say that I was on the edge of my seat
wondering what would happen next,
but then the storyline slowed down. . .
in fact it slowed down a little too much.
Maybe it's because I had other things on my mind,
but I found it slightly tedious to read the middle of the book.
The beginning was good as was the ending,
but the middle just dragged along.
Don't get me wrong, the writing was very good
and I thoroughly enjoyed the interaction between the characters,
but there was just something missing. . .
I found it lacking any depth during the middle portion.

The Road to Magnolia Glen is a sweet historical romance novel
and one I would certainly recommend reading.
Just because I found the middle to be a tad slow
doesn't mean it wasn't a good book.
Also, the first book in the series,
The Promise of Breeze Hill,
was a very enjoyable read.

** I was given a free copy of this book from Tyndale Publishers for an honest review.
All thoughts are my own. No other compensation was received. **

I have one more book review that I will share soon,
but I wanted to let you know of a change that is going to take place.

Life is like a book,
some chapters are sad,
some are happy and some are exciting,
but if you never turn the page,
you will never know what the next chapter
has in store for you.
- Unknown -

After a lot of consideration and prayer
I have decided to close my Etsy shop.
While it's the perfect outlet for me to share my love for crafting
I have decided that it's time to close the doors.
Etsy supports and stands for some things that I disagree with
and cannot support so due to those issues
I feel it would be best if I pulled my support from them.
I am looking into other avenues for selling my handmade goodies
and will keep you posted.
There is not much left in my Etsy shop,
but I will keep it open until July 31st
so if you would like to purchase something please feel free to stop by.
Rose Petal Blessings

Enjoy 10% off your purchase.

I hope each and every one of you are enjoying your summer
and when things slow down here I will attempt to start sharing on my blog.
Until then please know that you are thought of often.
Love and hugs to you!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Cinnamon Roll Coffee Cake


Oh cinnamon and sugar,
how I love thee.




Hello, lovely friends!
Today I have an oh-so-wonderful treat for you.
Are you needing a little something for your sweet tooth?
Or are you having company over
and you need a quick and tasty dessert?
Maybe you just want a cinnamon roll with your cup of coffee,
but don't want to make a whole batch. . .
well, this delicious cinnamon roll coffee cake 
is just what you're looking for.




This cake is easy peasy to whip up,
and it's filled with ooey gooey goodness
that will make your taste buds thank you after you've eaten a piece.




Ingredients:

CAKE
½ cup butter, melted
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
3 cups flour
2 tsp vanilla
4 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1½ cups milk

TOPPING
1 cup butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp cinnamon

GLAZE
2 cups powdered sugar
5 Tbsp milk
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For the cake,
mix all the cake ingredients together in a large bowl
until well combined.
Pour into a greased 9 x 13 pan.

For the topping, 
mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl 
until well combined.

Spread evenly on the batter and swirl with a knife. 
Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes
{the recipe says to bake it this long, 
but I had to bake mine for about 45-50 minutes}.

For the glaze, 
mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl 
until it is a consistency like pancake syrup.
While the cake is warm 
drizzle the glaze onto the top and it will set into a harder glaze.
Serve warm or at room temperature.




Serve this cake in the morning for brunch
or save it for dessert after supper.
And brew yourself a nice cup of tea or coffee.
Mmmm. . .
Mmmm. . .
Good!




Thanks for visiting, my friends!
I hope you have a delightful day!

Well, would you look at that,
someone finished off the cake and coffee. . . 
{{smiles}}


Sunday, May 27, 2018

True Heroism


The brave die never, 
though they sleep in dust, 
their courage nerves a thousand living men.
- Minot J. Savage -




A man's country is not a certain area of land, 
of mountains, rivers, and woods, 
but it is a principle 
and patriotism is loyal to that principle.
- George William Curtis -


Have a blessed Memorial Day, dear friends.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Blind Betrayal - Book Review

Deputy U.S. Marshal Casey Sloane 
has worked at the St. Louis Marshals office for two years 
and is given a routine assignment to help transport a reporter to D.C. 
to testify before a grand jury. 
Valerie, the reporter, was writing a story about an up-and-coming environmentalist 
who suddenly disappeared and, she later discovered, 
whose backers purportedly have ties to a terrorist.
When the seemingly ordinary assignment suddenly takes a shocking turn, 
Casey is forced to put aside her own feelings 
about the unexpected reappearance of a man from her past as she 
and two other Marshals take Valerie on the run. 
And as it becomes dangerously clear 
Valerie's testimony has even bigger implications than they knew, 
they'll do whatever it takes to make it out alive.




My Thoughts
Blind Betrayal is book three
in the Defenders of Justice series.
You can find my reviews for the first two books
by clicking on the titles below:



While Blind Betrayal had some exciting moments,
I have to admit that just like the first book
I found this one to be predictable and at times slightly unbelievable.
I found the plots to be repetitive, for example:
twice the characters are captured,
twice they are bound in a vehicle with their captors,
and twice they try to figure out how to escape the confines of the car.
There are 312 pages in the story 
and I feel as though the author's imagination could run wild 
with different plots, scenarios, and ideas.

For the most part I enjoyed the characters.
Casey, the Deputy U. S. Marshal was a likable gal
with a tough exterior, but a tender heart.
She has a few demons that haunt her every day
and throughout the book her "weaknesses" are exposed,
but in a good way. . .they make her stronger and better.

E. J., the man that Casey hates but loves shows up just before things go awry.
She can either turn her back on him and let things crumble around them,
or she can open up for them to work as a team 
in order to get them out of the mess they are in.

And then there is Valerie. . .the reporter Casey and E. J. are trying to protect.
She was probably my least favorite character.
She wasn't completely honest 
and at times her immaturity and cowardliness
rubbed me the wrong way.

Yes, there is suspense and maybe a nail-biting moment or two,
but not enough for me to give this book 5 stars. . .or even 4 stars.
I'm going to have to give it 3 stars.
I have always enjoyed Nancy Mehl's work,
but Blind Betrayal just didn't hit me in the right spot.

While Blind Betrayal is the third book in this series
I think it could be read as a stand alone book.
There are a few characters mentioned in the story
that were in the first and second books, but they don't play a big part.

** I was given a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publishers for an honest review.
All thoughts and opinions are my own. No other compensation was received. **

About the Author
Nancy Mehl is the author of 22 books, 
including the Road to Kingdom and Finding Sanctuary series. 
She received the ACFW Mystery Book of the Year Award in 2009. 
She has a background in social work and is a member of ACFW and RWA. 
Nancy writes from her home in Missouri, 
where she lives with her husband, Norman, and their Puggle, Watson. 
Visit www.nancymehl.com to learn more.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Just An Old, But New Pillow


Vintage means
pre-loved.




A little while ago I went through my pile of vintage linens
and came across this lovely lady.
She was originally made to hold clothespins,
but as you will see in the next photo she was showing some wear.
The sides were quite ragged and would only continue to unravel if used.




The lady herself is in excellent condition
and whoever embroidered her did a beautiful job.




I was going to sew her up into a tote bag,
but at the last minute I decided to create a pillow.
She looks delightful on my bed. . . 




And in my craft room
among my beloved quilts.




At the moment I have her resting on my vintage rocking chair
which is in the living room right by the fire place.
I have a feeling she will be traveling around the house.




You will notice I added 6 fabric yo-yo's
for the finishing touch to the pillow.
Of course I had to embellish her
{{smiles}}




Thanks for visiting, sweet friends.
I would love to know what you've been up to 
and what you're creating at the moment.

Have a blessed and beautiful day!
{{{hugs}}}


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