Friday, March 7, 2014

I'm Not Betting Against Phil Again

March 20 is the first day of spring. While a few signs of its arrival have been sighted NE PA, it's doesn't seem so close. Layers of ice cover most of the area. Sadly this year, Punxsutawney Phil was right on. However, we'll take hope in the small things.

Spring brings many memories to my mind. One is my grandmother. As soon as the weather broke and the coal stove was dampened down and the windows open to let fresh air breeze through the house, it was time for spring cleaning. The furniture was moved back and the carpets rolled up and taken outside and hung over the wash line. It was the younger childrens' job to bat the heck out of them. The carpets wouldn’t be brought back into the house until the last a spec of dust fell from its fibers.

While the carpets were handled, drapes, furniture cushions, and pillows found their way to the wash line too. The venetian blinds were stripped from the windows and put into huge tubs of sudsy water. Grandpa was called if any repairs had to be made. This was the time, before the real work began.

Once he was done, and his tools put away, the furniture was brushed and wiped down. (They didn’t have vacuum extensions during this time period. Grandme’s vacuum was huge and roared like a T-Rex.) Dust Bunnies were rounded up. The furniture was move to the center of the room. The walls were stripped of all adornments and then, came the hot soapy water. The walls wiped sown. Hot soapy pine water was used on all the wood work. And, hot vinegar water was use to scrub the windows. Newspaper was used to dry them and make them shine. Finally the floor was scrubbed.

Only after the room passed Grandme’s inspection was everything put back into place. Then it was onto the next room.

While the women worked inside the men were busy outside. The house was taken care of before the spring planting could begin.

Spring cleaning usually took a good four days, but by Sunday all the chores were done and we could relax and enjoy a Sunday dinner in a sparkling home.

So a the next few weeks, like my grandmother and my mother, I’ll begin my spring cleaning. My job will be made easier by modern conveniences. I can’t wait to smell inside the freshness of SPRING.

Disclaimer: I’m not as old as this blog might make me seem, but this is my grandmother I’m blogging about. She had her ways and her tools and we helped doing the job her way.

For a great weekend read to warm your heart, try PERFECT

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Valentine's Day In Mule Post, Texas


My readers wanted to know what happened to Isobel and Warner, so I decided to share one of their Valentine moments.
ENJOY the snippet!

Isobel slipped out of Warner’s truck and was immediately trapped by his hard body. Her shawl fell from her shoulders and Warner’s warm lips caressed her exposed bare skin. The man’s maleness wrapped around her senses, crushing her defenses into dust. Her knees buckled as tingles followed his assault over her dress’s thin strap, up the cord of her neck to the sensitive area under her lobe.

Tilting her head toward the snow moon, Isobel’s eyes drifted close. “We’re together six months and you still can’t wait until we get inside?”

“Remember our first date?” He mumbled against her ear.

“I’ll never forget. You wanted me so bad.”

He pulled back and chuckled. “I wanted you. You ripped my shirt off before I made it up the porch steps.”

“I think all the smoke you’ve inhaled while investigating fires has affected your memory, Yankee.” With her hands splayed on his hard chest, she pushed him back. “Why don’t we head in and I’ll show exactly how you assaulted me.” She entwined her fingers with his and started toward the house only to be yanked back.

“I need to show you something first.” Grabbing both her hands, Warner backpedaled toward the barn.

“No. I’m not dressed for the loft.”

“Trust me.”

Isobel laughed. “I’m in trouble if I do that.”

Warner rolled back the barn door and hit the light switch.

Lizzy whinnied.

Isobel took a moment to give the mare now completely blind in her right eye a treat of winter apple. As the horse’s soft muzzle tickled her palm, Isobel wished she’d find another horse as great as Lizzy was at the barrels and as pretty as the Appaloosa she’d seen at auction last week.

“Come on.” Warner’s hot breath brushed her ear.

Her new dress would smell of straw and beast if Warner had his way. The gravel floor crunched as Isobel dug her FMN cowgirl boot heels into its firmness. “No way I’m going to make out—”

A nicker drew Isobel’s attention to a stall that should be empty. “What was that?

She peered through the bars at the handsome Appaloosa colt she’d lost to a higher bidder at the auction. Her heart thumped under her breast. “I don’t understand. How?”

Warner’s eyes danced with wicked joy. “I knew how much you wanted him. Happy Valentine’s Day, sweetheart.”

Isobel laced her fingers around Warner’s neck and pulled him closer. “Yankee, you’re going to get your shirt ripped off again.”

Tuesday, January 21, 2014



My name is Stephanie, and I have a story for you.

It all started Labor Day weekend. It was so peaceful in the cool, green mountains of northeast Pennsylvania. Well, as peaceful as it could be with two kids who didn't want to be camping with their mom.

Then it happened.



It didn't take me long to realize who I was dealing with.

Needless to say that I was scared out of my mind. Look at me. Where was I to hide from the Russian Mafia?

Then John came into our lives. He was working the case. Together, I knew we had a chance.

Yes, some say we shouldn't have fallen in love. FBI agents don't do that. Right? (ROLLING EYES) The heart knows what it wants.

The weeks the kids, John and I spent on the run are ones we'll never forget and neither will you.
HIS WITNESS TO EVIL is FREE as a Amazon download Today only January 21, 2014.

Please spread the word. What I learned teaming up with the FBI might help you one day.

And while you're at Amazon, check out SEIZED BY DARKNESS. Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Ah 1 And Ah 2

January is a depressing month for many. Some of you might've cried cabin-fever as soon as the ball dropped in Times Square. If you’re one of the millions who each year suffers from SAD or cabin-fever, would you love not to? I know your answer is yes.

I love winter. I love everything about it except the darkness. I really don't know how those living in the north hemisphere can handle twenty hours of darkness.

As much as I love winter, my body does tend to slow down and if I don't get moving, my mind says, “Okay, if you’re not going to move, I might as well rest too.” Not good for a writer. Not good for anyone really.

I didn’t want to shut down this year and then have to play catch-up, so on January first I sat some pretty aggressive goals for 2014. To make those goals, I had to move and move I did.

I began to dance in the morning for twenty minutes as a form of exercise. I love to dance. So the minute my feet hit the floor, I’m struttin’ my stuff to any beat I want. In a week, my energy level soared.

If you don’t believe me that dancing works, here are some articles verifying the benefits of shaking your booty. Check them out.

What is great about dancing is you don’t need a video or a special piece of equipment. Just crank up the radio and dance. And dance in the sunlight. Dance your way through January and February.

Do you have a way to fend off SAD or cabin fever you’d like to share?