The Coast Road Home

Three years ago, it was a beautiful March Saturday in New Glarus, Wisconsin. The sun was out. The day, a crisp cool prelude to spring. Divorced mom Marley Lennox wanted nothing more than to spend time with her two kids at the family farm, a peaceful setting outside of town. They’d all been looking forward to helping tend to the newborn calf and spending a quiet weekend in the countryside.

But then the shooter showed up, armed to the teeth and ready to kill. The massacre lasted less than ten minutes, but the damage had been done. Marley’s entire family had been wiped out, gone forever.

Shaken, and suffering from survivor’s guilt, Marley’s life is spiraling downward. After three years of trying to leave the past behind, she realizes she needs to get out of Wisconsin and start over, otherwise she’ll go mad. But where does she go? She decides she needs an adventure, a road trip to get her head on straight and give her time to think about her next step.

When a car accident lands her in Pelican Pointe, she’s forced to stay until she’s healed. But after meeting her doctor, Gideon Nighthawk, things start happening fast, feelings  surface that she never expected to feel again, feelings she thought were gone for good. But is she really ready to start her life over? Or will she forever live in the shadow of  guilt?  Will Gideon be enough to help her turn her life around? Or will she always feel trapped in a never-ending circle filled with grief and anger?

the day after a manic Monday

The weekend slid by without much drama, crisis, or fanfare. But hey, it wasn’t Monday yet. Little did I know Monday was preparing to kick my ass. And kick my ass it did. imagesThe week started simple enough—fresh bagels and blessed coffee. Who doesn’t like waking up to the prospect of fresh bagels, right? The night before I’d made a trip to Whole Foods to pick up a few things. The bagels were an afterthought. They’re great toasted smeared with cream cheese, right? That is, if they’re already sliced. Trust me on this. Unfortunately I bought the kind that wasn’t pre-cut. Simple fix. I take one out to toast, but first it needs cutting in half. This is where things go very wrong. I sliced open my finger instead of cutting the bagel. I’m bleeding like I’ve been stabbed so I grab a kitchen towel, wrap it around the wound to stop the flow of blood. All that red has ruined my bagel. After finally getting the bleeding under control, I’m out of the mood for the bagel. Totally. I throw back my caffeine fix like I’ve been a castaway on some tropical island for the past seven years. After getting enough coffee in me, I decide to run to the store for more Neosporin to smear on my owie. I’m also out of Band-Aids. Anyway, I get to my car, which is parked in the garage, and it won’t start. Nothing. It seems I have a dead battery because the night before—after making the trip to Whole Foods—I left the door open all night. The seat belt apparently got tangled up and kept the door from closing. After waiting for AAA to show up, I start out to the store and discover the place where I shop had a power outage during the night and they’re closed until further notice. At this point, I give up and surrender to Monday’s black hole. I drive back home, close the drapes, and crawl into bed. I figure I’ll try this again when it’s not Monday.

Romance free through March 1

Sometimes a Promise Kept Can Change Your Life

Reeling from the violent death of her husband in war-torn Iraq, Jordan Phillips is at her FINAL NEW Promise Covewit’s end, left to fend for herself and her baby. Alone and desperate in backwater Pelican Pointe, she faces an uphill battle against a judgmental and hostile town as she tries to rebuild her life. But when a mysterious and handsome stranger with a tragic secret appears, her fragile new world threatens to come crashing down around her. A heartbreaking story of love and romance, Promise Cove will hold you breathless until the very last page.

❤  Promise Cove free through March 1st!! 

cookies

“Health food may be good for the conscience but Oreos taste a hell of a lot better.”

~ Robert Redford

Same goes for these sugary cookies with creamy icing.  Thanksgiving cookies and grateful hearts. Nibbled on these instead of pumpkin pie. Four left, neighbor kids cleaned  out the rest. 

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get in the giving mood with a twist

“I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.”        Maya Angelou

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If you’re like me, Christmas has become about a huge pile of gifts that no one really needs or wants. Sure, those soft, furry slippers will come in handy on cold, winter nights, same for the new pair of gloves. And I promise to find somewhere to show off that new sweater. But let’s get real. If you want to do something special this year, maybe try giving to people who really need it. I’m not talking about re-gifting the can opener Aunt Mary sent after the fact.  Nope.

There are lots of ways to give—bake something for a sick neighbor, make a donation to a food bank, hand over your saved pennies to the Salvation Army kettle, make a donation to UNICEF. With all the disasters we’ve had this year, it’s a perfect time to write out a check to the Red Cross. Or try my favorite, a donation to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. If you’re stretched too thin to make a financial contribution, volunteer to read to a group of kids at your local hospital. Their little faces will light up in delight as soon as you open up that book and begin to read to them. You might have to wear a mask, depending on the ward, but if you speak up and speak clearly, trust me, they won’t mind at all.