New Year Wish – 2020

Hello and welcome!

Thank you for the kind words, the shares for this past year. I hope my posts made you smile and that you found new stories you enjoyed.

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Happy New Year

Boldog Új Évet

Bonne année

Hauʻoli makahiki hou

Frohes neues Jahr

Blwyddyn Newydd Dda

Felice anno nuovo

¡Feliz año nuevo!

Gott nytt år

Gelukkig nieuwjaar

Maligayang bagong Taon

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See you next year, until then happy reading/listening!

Christmas Wishes – 2019

Hello and welcome!

A short message to wish you and yours…

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Boldog Karácsonyi Ünnepeket!

 

Merry Christmas!
Fröhliche Weihnachten
Joyeux Noël
¡Feliz Navidad!
Mele Kalikimaka
Nollaig Shona Dhuit
Nadolig Llawen !
Buone Feste Natalizie
God Jul
Glædelig Jul
Vrolijk Kerstfeest
Sretan Bozic
Kala Christouyenna
Feliz Natal
Pozdrevlyayu s prazdnikom Rozhdestva s Novim Godom
Kung His Hsin Nien bing Chu Shen Tan
Suk sarn warn Christmas
Chuć Mưǹg Giańg Sinh

May the good times and treasures of the present become the golden memories of tomorrow.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

KaLiCon 2019 – thoughts and a giveaway

Hello and welcome!

As some of you may know, I attended KaLiCon this year again with M. A. Abraham, if you missed my intro post you can check it out here.

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Only the 2nd year and the event Kali Willows, Kacey Hammell and their kickass team organized was absolutely amazing. I enjoyed it all.

the registration bags and the swag received…

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the ELVEN GAMES 2.0 Thursday afternoon where I got to help out, we had so much fun. Among other contests, I got them to do sock monkeys, they are not easy to do and was impressed with them. The pink one got first prize!

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the double feature movie night on Thursday in our PJs. We had some LOL moments when some of the gals got their stuffed animals to be naughty, Sharon’s poor teddybear got traumatized by the monkey 😀 … my red dragon felt left out though 😉

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but got some cuddles from two other cute teddybears 😉

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Murder Mystery Dinner with full production on Friday night

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the book signing was FREE to the general public on Saturday

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the Halloween party where everybody dressed up on Saturday night … and danced our tushies off 😀

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The food was great at all meals.

I won this beautiful table arrangement at one of the lunches, made by The Briers Edge. One of my friends at the table liked it so much, I gave it to her.

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The silent auction was even more successful than last year, so many great items donated, the proceeds went to the YMCA Strong Kids Campaign.

I won the bid on this art made also by The Briers Edge, depicting C. A. King‘s  book, “Miracles Not Included“.

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Oh the laughter… the awesome conversations… the dancing… the shenanigans … we had a blast! Great memories!!! Finally got to meet Andi Lawrencovna and she is such a delightful person to be around, lots of fun too. Got to see again some old friends, meet new ones too from which I know there will be a few that will be long lasting friendships.

There was a contest for the readers for which I entered too. I didn’t win, but had a blast writing the short story, fan-fiction in my fave world, the Elven Chronicles, where my ultimate BBF took me to the masquerade ball at KaLiCon. I had no idea would be that hard to let the story out of my hands. I don’t know how authors do it, like letting your baby go out into the wild world LOL the few that read the story so far say they enjoyed it.

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I was really good this signing, bought only a few books.

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I recommend Pépé G. Woodman‘s “The Dragon Within“, it is such a heartfelt and inspirational book with lots of beautiful photos. The author will be chatting with me in the new year here on the blog. Hope you will join us then.

For more info, check out the KaLiCon websiteTwitter and Facebook. Hopefully there is another event planned next year.

And now the giveaway … a bag with all kinds of swag, a copy of “Invited, A Dinner to Die For” I bought an extra copy just for you and got signed by the authors. Also two signed books generously gifted, “Mythic Iron” from Kali Willows and “Guarding Midnight” from Kacey Hammell.

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Tell me what are you reading/listening to right now. Sexy Mr. Random will pick the winner from the comments, after 3pm EST on Thursday, December 26, 2019. Open internationally! GOOD LUCK!

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

The GYST challenge – week 3 & 4 – update

Hello and welcome!

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I didn’t forget about the challenge, I just didn’t post the updates. LIFE!!!

This post will be a mix mash of things, you’ve been warned!

I did tick off tasks from my lists I made during October. Not as many as I would have liked but still more than I would have without joining… about 70% of it. Work in progress I say, lots more to do. You know when you start a project and then you think of other things that need to be done.

At top of that list there is an on-going task, I call it the mental GMST (get my shit together). Not sure if it comes with age or just people around me are getting more … how to say it delicately? hmmm …

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I see more people not using common sense, and respect is a forgotten art, no regard to what the consequences actions or words have, accepting no responsibility.

I was talking to a friend earlier and what she said made me pause. “Maybe the problem is you!” Hmmm… o_O

When did society became so complacent? If I speak up, I am rude!

I keep joking, but I will make a t-shirt with “COMMON SENSE IS MY SUPERPOWER”. I tell my DS all the time…. Thispointing to his head, is not for decoration! USE IT!

Back to the challenge… yes I am learning to stop taking the burden of other people’s actions on myself. I am learning to control my reaction to them. Making myself ‘DUH-WTF-proof’ and let it roll off me. Deep breathing exercises and wearing my “BS blockers” listening to audiobooks help. Changing perspective helps too.

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That is another task from the list that I worked on, posting my reviews for books I read/listened to, in progress … behind by about 50 books … gasp

With my birthday in a few days and trying to figure out how to go forward in many areas in my life I find myself lost in thought, some go to the past, some go to the future. I know it is not good to dwell in the past and got rid of many ‘baggages’, but there are a few that still linger … probably until I find the right ‘eraser’. As for the future, I have no idea… I used to fret. I try not to anymore, will cross the bridge when I get there.

Purging the house is still going on, last weekend I took a bag and a box to Value Village, also gave some of the clothes where I knew were needed. Started another box for donation to the local Women Shelter.

Teaching my DS to cook his fave dishes is another ongoing task, he is actually enjoying it. He forgot that when he was little he used to enjoy being in the kitchen with me, I made it fun even though there was a lot of cleanup after our cooking sessions with flour on the floor, spaghetti sauce on the wall, pancake stuck to the ceiling or the jello fights LOL fun times I am hoping to bring back.

Did you join in the challenge? Did you do any tasks? Would love to read your comments. In the meantime I will press pause, pull myself back from everything and see what I come up with.

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

The GYST challenge – week 2

Hello and welcome!

Last week I joined the “Get Your Sh*t Together Challenge”. Missed my post? Check it out here.

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Weeeelll… I made my list on the 1st, one small thing for each day, but… you know how life is, right? I didn’t do all the tasks from the list, but I did other tasks so that maybe balances it out.

I made my DS clean out his closet of the clothes he’s outgrown, it only took 6 months LOL now I have to find a good home for them, most of them are brand new. That will be a task for this week.

I cleaned out the fridge of things that I bought thinking let’s try something new, but never used. I am adventurous when it comes to cuisines, I like to try new things (within limits) but my DS is a picky eater so it is hard to get him to even taste new stuff, but slowly I am introducing him to new foods, just have to catch him on a good day. 16 is hard let me tell you 😛

One of the tasks was to spend at least one hour with my DS each night chatting about our day or things that he is interested in without phones, iPads nearby or the TV on. He surprises me again and again on how much he understand of things in general or even more complex things. Accomplished 4 out of 7, so that is not bad, right?

I made 250 swag bags for KaLiCon, it took about 9 hours EEEEK but I finished one audiobook and half way thru the 2nd one … WIN-WIN … right?

The ‘clear the clutter from the coffee table‘ task, was 75% successful, but didn’t last long.

Email cleaning – ACK during book signings or busy days at the office when I can check my email only sporadically, emails pile up. So I cleaned out over 8,000 emails in the last week and I am staying on top of it, until the next books signing that is LOL

One of the more daunting tasks is to go thru a pile of papers (3 plastic bins and one wooden chest worth) and shred the papers that are not needed anymore. Since my home shredder gave its last breath a few months ago, I’ve been putting it off, but this week I’ve been bringing small bundles and get them shredded at work. I wish I had a backyard, I could make a beautiful bonfire LOL

The one task that was on my list and wanted to do last week is cleaning the computer desk, didn’t get to it yet, but I am adding it to this weeks tasks. Has to be done, the things came close to tumble off when my DS was looking for an eraser because he could not find the other 4 he has eye roll

How did you do? Did you make a list? Did you start? No worries if you didn’t. You will when you are ready.

A new week start today, wish me luck. Tonight is ‘teach the DS the art of deep scrub of the bathroom’ task.

I will be posting in a week and give you my results. Drop by and tell me what YOU did.

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

Get Your Sh*t Together Challenge

Hello and welcome!

I joined the ‘Get Your Sh*t Together Challenge’ 😀

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I first heard of it on Rosanna Leo‘s blog post, followed the link to the original creator of the challenge, Herding Cats & Burning Soup blog. An interesting post and it came at the right time.

I was chatting with my BFF last week when I said that things come to me when I need them, I just have to believe. I need little reminders when I am ready to throw in the towel.

So yes, I AM JOINING in because I need to do something about the colossal to-do-list. I always kick myself when a deadline is looming and I procrastinated each day with tomorrow is another day, although I’ve been dealing with some medical issues and pain is not conducive to do anything. Breaking it down will help me overcome the panic that creeps up on me when I think about it. Lots of the tasks are about getting rid of stuff that brings sad or painful memories. So I am looking forward to getting rid of mental and physical junk, also getting my health back.

Check out the post, there is a printable list that you can use to get ideas and things checked off.

Today I will sit down and make a plan for the next 6 days, each day tackling one small task. So I challenge you to pick one thing to change this week, what will it be?

I will be posting in a week and give you my results. Hope you will drop by and tell me what YOU did.

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

Audiobooks to listen to: Instant Gratification

Hello and welcome!

Another great audio you don’t want to miss is the one I listened to a few days ago and that is Instant Gratification by Lauren Blakely.

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A star-studded production of a new stand-alone romance from number one New York Times best-selling author Lauren Blakely, performed by a full cast of 15 narrators. Led by Andi Arndt and Shane East, the all-star cast also includes award winners and fan favorites: Vikas Adam, Bahni Turpin, Scott Brick, Zachary Webber, Jason Clarke, Emma Wilder, Hillary Huber, Joe Arden, Grace Grant, Marisa Calin, Lili Valente, newcomer Adam Lau, and Sebastian York in a special appearance.

I need a fake date. She needs my late-night expertise. Now, if we can just keep our hands off each other….

As the premier best-man-for hire in all of Manhattan, I promise discretion, so when I need a plus one for a couple of “I dos”, I turn to my gorgeous, clever, witty best friend’s sister. She’s my good friend, too, and I lust after her completely. I mean, I trust her completely.

After all, just look how she’s kept her lips sealed about the hot, multi-O night we spent together. Yes, just look at those sexy lips.

In any case, we only fell off the wagon once, and it was months ago. I’m sure we can make it through these weddings without banging each other in the limo.

Or can we?

This special production also includes a behind-the-scenes conversation with Andi Arndt and Shane East as well as a blooper reel!

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My review:

Overall 5 out of 5 stars
Performance 5 out of 5 stars
Story 5 out of 5 stars

eargasm overload
A great romcom story that we come to expect from Ms. Blakely, friends to lovers with chemistry thru the roof, with some comic relief from friends and family, comeback lines, and very little angst and no drama, which I love. The singing, the banter between friends, the heat between the couples, the energy between partners and love of family is all felt throughout the book. Jason and Truly get their HEA and judging by the few epilogues we can expect other couples will too in future books. YAY
I had a few eargasms from the intro alone. The voices are incredible, some are my faves I listened to before and some new ones too that I will be sure to check out more of. The story is alive, it was like listening to a theatre show on the radio, they made it so easy to listen to, I could not stop. It is an experience not to be missed. I know I will be listening to this one again.

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For those of you who don’t do audio, here is the website where you can find all the buy links.

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

Audiobooks to listen to: Heidi’s Guide to Four Letter Words

Hello and welcome!

I just finished one of the best audiobook I listened to this year and I thought I should share it with you.

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Heidi’s Guide to Four Letter Words” is a laugh-out-loud romcom with a few cringe-worthy (for Heidi that is) situations and some hawt scenes too. I learned a few new expressions too.

Uff da is one of them, I learned that is used to express surprise, relief, exhaustion, astonishment, and dismay. It kind of means “drats!”, “oops!”, “ouch!”, “Oh no!” or “Okay!”

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I need one of these in my life LOL

Cowritten by USA Today best-selling author Tara Sivec and award-winning narrator Andi Arndt, a hysterically funny, heartfelt romance about starting over and taking chances.

Nothing good ever comes from drinking a box of wine alone. So when I decided to entertain my drunken self by setting up some hand-me-down podcasting equipment and reading the steamy parts from romance novels, I never thought anyone would actually listen. The fact that I admitted my huge crush on my sexy next door neighbor made the whole thing even more mortifying. But sometimes life surprises you, and that’s how my podcast, Heidi’s Discount Erotica, was born.

Now I, Heidi Larsen, a sweet former kindergarten teacher in Waconia, Minnesota, lead a scandalous double life reading erotic novels to the listening world. And with each episode, I find myself embracing my new alter ego more and more. Now I’m starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin and do things I never would have dreamed of – like kissing my neighbor.

Look out, Waconia, because Heidi’s on the loose! She’s in your ears, in your hearts, and down your pants…wait, that didn’t sound as good as it did in my head. Well, you get the picture, don’tcha know!

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My review:

Overall 5 out of 5 stars
Performance 5 out of 5 stars
Story 5 out of 5 stars

“sweet and hilarious”
One of the best books I listened to this year. Sweet, innocent Heidi comes out of her shell and oh boy what a ride. Hilarious at times where I burst out laughing, startled quite a few people around me, at work or in the elevator. DO NOT DRINK OR EAT while listening to this! I loved the interactions between Heidi and her quirky parents and the Aunt is my fave character. Love Brent, her hawt neighbour. They get their HEA, but there are a few twists I so didn’t expect. My first book by Ms. Sivec and I am looking forward to discovering more of her books.

Ms. Arndt is one of my fave narrators, I love listening to her voices, and with this debut novel that launches her writing career, she is even more so. I really hope there will be more because I need more stories.

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Audible

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For those of you who don’t do audio there is a preorder – Amazon US
– ebook is releasing December 3, 2019

You can follow Andi Arndt on her website, FB, Twitter. I listened to many of her audiobooks and I recommend you check out her work.

Tara Sivec can be found on her website, FB, Twitter, also check out the Pinterest board for Heidi’s book and you will see who are the characters and other tidbits. A new author for me, I will definitely check out her other books.

I wonder if I can convince Andi and Tara to send one of the characters for a chat… hmm… maybe Brent? Or Heidi’s Aunt? She is my fave secondary character… hmmm

I REALLY REALLY REALLY hope there will be more books in Heidi’s world, we need more stories!!!

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

 

RTC2019 – thoughts and a giveaway

Hello and welcome!

I mentioned in one of my earlier blogs about my plans to attend Romancing the Capital in Ottawa, Canada again this year, I did and had a blast. Got to see old friends, made new ones and as usual I went over the budget by a smidge 😉

Eve Langlais and her minions rocked it as usual. Looks like this is it, at least for a while, so I am glad I went. I want to thank all the sponsors, the authors and those who helped them for a great event.

The VIP bags were full with the generous donations from the authors.

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Thursday afternoon I was so excited to finally met in person one of my longtime on-line friends, Gayle, AKA Dark Angel, and we had a great meal and got caught up on our lives.

Then in the evening, I attended the “Audio & Crafts with Deborah Cooke, Debra Dunbar, and Mandy Rosko. Check out this steampunk bracelet and key chain I made, supplies brought by Mandy Rosko.

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Got to chat with Will Dages from Findaway Voices, he actually remembered my name from the awesome giveaway I won on Twitter, I was their 1,000 follower. You should check out their website if you are an author looking to get your books in audio or distribute them.

Friday morning I attended “Romance Reader Cover Bingo with Lacey Silks where I won a box of chocolates YUM

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Then I did “Sexy Cover Puzzles with Becca Jameson.

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These are just a few, I attended more after I reigned in the migraine that hit suddenly, that was a rough one too. I took a lot of breaks and wore my sunglasses for the afternoon.

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I got to put my costume-making skills to the test again, and boy, were they tested. I could not finish it fully before the event because the day I planned to, everything went sideways and had to take care of the issues thrown my way… my DS was joking that he could see the steam coming out of my ears… which took most of the day.

So here I am on the night of the Steampunk Ball and am trying to put together the costume… but again… the corset was giving me attitude, the boots didn’t fit because my ankles were swelled up (I had to settle for my funky clogs), hot flashes and my hands were not cooperating… seemed like something was telling me give up… but I said, dammit! I will not give up! So I didn’t 😛 I think it turned out pretty good.

I was again the BBF (book boyfriend) collector … steampunk style 😉

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My props were a couple of very old books bound in leather, the publishing year was not noted in them but one of them has a dedication and it was gifted for Christmas in 1934, two hand made leather bound journals…

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… and a chain with keys and lots of books.

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The food was excellent, there were prizes for best costumes and dancing too.

Also got a lot of charms too, I am sure I missed a few when I was down with a migraine or because a couple of authors didn’t give them if you didn’t guess the clue right. Oh well.

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Saturday morning had breakfast while attending Books Books & More Books Bingo with Becca Jameson and Elle Boon. We used caramels instead of stamps, they were yummy too.

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Then I had fun at “What’s Your Fortune… in Bed?” with Desiree Holt, Elle Boon, Susan Hayes, NJ Walters, and Zoe York. You should have heard the riotous laughter as the readers got to read their fortune cookies and acting them out. These were the ones I got… adding at the end “… in bed”.

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Later I was at “Draw a Stickman Cover!” with Mina Carter, Susan Hayes, and J Thompson. Had a few laughs at my stickman drawings of the covers LOL

Also attended “Two Truths and a Lie” with Molly O’Keefe, Deborah Cooke, Susan Hayes, Ellis Leigh, Zoe York, and Lilith Darville. I won one book from Ellis Leigh when I guessed her trivia.

Then I attended Milly’s World Lunch, hosted by Milly Taiden, Ophelia Bell, Godiva Glenn, Sheri Lyn, Jennifer Wedmore, Roxanne Witherell. I was sitting at Godiva’s table and got chatting, a new author for me and I am looking forward to discover her books. We got a tote bag with goodies from the authors.

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Then there was the book signing, I got to chat with the authors (got lots of swag for you),  other readers and bloggers. Here is my loot 🙂

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OY this is getting to be a long post and if you got this far in reading, you deserve a shot at the giveaway a bag full of swag and a couple of signed books generously donated by Freya Barker and Mina Carter.

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Just tell me in the comments who is your ultimate book boyfriend, with name, book title and author. If you can’t choose, give me the latest one 😉

Sexy Mr. Random will pick a winner from the comments after 3pm EST on Thursday, September 5, 2019. Open internationally! GOOD LUCK!

Until next time… read a book, listen to a book and don’t forget to show your love by leaving a review!

Happy Friendship Day <3

Hello and welcome!

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I know, every day is friendship day, but today is International Friendship Day declared by the UN.

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I am blessed to have friends like this in my life and I hope they know how much they mean to me.

Go hug / tex t/ email / call your friends… and I hope you get many hugs.

Happy thinking! ‘Till next time.

 

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