A bridge over a beautiful waterfall

A bridge over a beautiful waterfall
Nature brings magic

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Snippet Sunday - Anila and Mkai

An excerpt from another one of my works in progress. This one has no definitive title yet. It's just Mkai and Anila's story. But here's a piece of it so I hope you enjoy.

“My apologies for lighting your fire without your permission,” Sauda said. “But we will need something to calm the little one and put her to sleep so I can check for broken bones.”
“That is understandable and there is no need for apology,” Mkai said. He set the child down on his bed. Again, she squirmed out of his grip and dashed around the room. This time, her good hand encountered one of the pillars that supported the building. She patted it a little and then started climbing. She was about halfway up when a spasm caused her to lose her grip and fall.
Mkai caught her before she hit the ground. The one violet eye that wasn't swollen shut stared blankly up at 

him. “Nimble little creature, isn't she?” Sauda asked.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Friday Food - Breakfast

Yes, I know. I'm a day late. Friday was a busy day for me and I completely forgot my blog post. But today we're talking breakfast. I'm digging into my recipe box to share some interesting recipes for a good start to your day.

Breakfast Muffin Cups

3 cups frozen hash browns, thawed
3 tablespoons melted butter
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
14 links breakfast sausage
6 eggs
2 cups shredded 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese
1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper
Chopped fresh chives or green onions

In a bowl, combine the hash browns, butter, salt and pepper. Press mixture onto the bottom and up the sides of greased non-stick muffin cups. Bake at 400 degrees F for 12 minutes or until lightly browned.

Meanwhile, cook sausage according to package directions; cut into 1/2-inch pieces. Divide sausage among muffin cups. Combine the eggs, cheese and bell pepper. Spoon over sausage. Sprinkle with chives. Bake for 13-15 minutes or until set.

Cinnamon Griddle Cakes

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons corn syrup
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

2 cups confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk

In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and cinnamon.

In a separate large bowl, beat together eggs, milk, corn syrup, butter and vanilla extract. Stir in the flour mixture.
Heat a lightly oiled griddle or frying pan over medium low heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

While pancakes are cooking, mix the icing. Combine confectioners' sugar, vanilla extract and enough milk to make a liquid frosting. Drizzle frosting on hot pancakes before serving.

Breakfast in a Glass

1 banana
1/4 cup strawberries
1/3 cup nonfat milk
1 (8 ounce) container nonfat plain yogurt

In a blender, combine banana, strawberries, milk and yogurt. Blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Snippet Sunday - Burning Dreams

This is longer than six sentences, but I couldn't pick out just six sentences this week. Here's how our two main characters meet in Burning Dreams.

Raghnall was pummeled mercilessly and beaten into the ground. His hands were trussed up behind his back and he was hauled over to the massive tree that shaded the crossroads. “They’re all dead,” someone said. Raghnall’s ears were ringing and his head was spinning. He couldn’t focus his eyes enough to concentrate.
“Then it’s a murderer we’ve got here,” one of the men holding him said. “String him up.”
A rope was produced and a noose was fitted around Raghnall’s neck. The rope was thrown over a branch and two of the men started to pull on it. Raghnall felt the scales constrict on the right side of his body. She was preparing to come out. Off to one side Raghnall heard chanting. A moment later a fireball hit him square in the chest, exploding and taking out the soldiers holding him. Raghnall dropped to the ground.
“Void take it,” a voice muttered.
Raghnall sat up. His clothing was gone, as were the ropes. The men who’d been holding him were obviously dead. He looked around. Six soldiers smoldered in a semi circle around him. He stood up, brushing the ash off. Sensing he was no longer in danger, the snake subsided.
“Ah, you’re still - intact.” A young man moved into Raghnall’s field of vision. He leaned on a staff, his gaze fixed on Raghnall. Long blond hair was pulled back in a braid which hung over one shoulder. His face was framed by a close cropped beard. He was dressed in clothing that wouldn’t look out of place on a prosperous farmer. He had a pack on his back and his belt held a number of pouches.
“Have you never seen a naked man before?” Raghnall asked as he looked around for his pack.
The young man averted his eyes before walking over to a pile of packs. “I would assume this is yours,” he said, holding up Raghnall’s pack. He tossed it over and Raghnall pulled out a spare set of clothing. He dressed himself and joined the other man at the pile of packs.
His would-be rescuer was already rummaging through one of the packs. Raghnall started searching through another pack. They worked in silence, pulling everything useful out and leaving the rest. “Now that the unpleasant business is over with, I suppose it’s only good manners to introduce ourselves. I’m called Elan.”

Friday, March 22, 2013

Food Friday - Semi-homemade

Hi everyone!

I'm resurrecting an old idea of mine and starting it again this week. Fridays are Food Fridays, a day where I share recipes that have some common theme.

This week's theme? Semi-homemade.

I'm not much of a cook. I can cook things from scratch, but I don't do it often. One of the big things I've become known for is doctoring pre-made stuff into semi-homemade dinners.

Veggie Mix Spaghetti with Sausauge

1 large can or 1 jar spaghetti sauce
1 pkg sliced mushrooms
1 medium onion, diced
1 c. shredded carrots
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
2 small zucchini, sliced (thin half moon shapes or diced if you prefer it smaller)
1 kielbasa or other smoked sausage, cut into 1/4" slices or chunks
1 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp chili powder
Pasta, cooked and drained
Olive oil
Shredded parmesan or mozzarella cheese (optional)

Heat the olive oil in a pan. Throw in the sausage and start browning it. Add onions and mushrooms and cook until onions are translucent. Set to the side. Pour spaghetti sauce into sauce pan. Turn on to medium heat. Add canned tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, and spices. Stir together and let cook for fifteen minutes, or until zucchini is cooked. Add sausage, mushrooms, and onions and stir together. Let cook for another five minutes so flavors blend. Serve with your favorite cooked pasta. Top with shredded cheese if preferred.

Salad with homemade Ranch dressing
1 package spring greens
1 package chopped romaine
Handful grape tomatoes or one medium sized tomato, diced

Homemade Ranch Dressing
1 c mayonnaise
1/2 c buttermilk
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp dried dill weed
1/2 tsp dried chives
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
Salt and black pepper to taste

In a large bowl, whisk together all ingredients for the salad dressing until mixed smooth. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. When it's time to serve, use the salad recipe or your own preferred salad and serve with the ranch dressing.

Cheese Garlic Biscuits
2 c. Bisquick Biscuit mix
2/3 c. milk
1/2 c. shredded cheddar
2 T butter or margarine, softened
1/8 tsp garlic powder

Heat oven to 450 F. Stir Bisquick mix, milk, and cheese until soft dough forms. Drop dough by nine spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Stir together butter and garlic. Brush over warm biscuits.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Six Sentence Sunday - Only A Name

Hey all!

I'm going to try a blog schedule again so I can get back in the habit of writing blog posts. So I thought I'd start with something simple. The whole Six Sentence Sunday thing.

This week is six sentences from the revision of Only A Name that I'm working on right now.

“Scat, Bay’s gone,” Spade said. Hawk was already up. “He lit out when he thought all of us were sleepin’.”

Scat sat up. “Where do ye think he went?”

“I think he went to get the guards, maybe trade us fer his freedom,” Spade said.

“Then we’d best be gone when he comes back,” Scat said.

“Scat, it’s too dark. They’re like to have torches or somethin’. They’ll find our trail,” Hawk said.

“Well, do ye want to stay here and wait fer them soldiers to kill ye?” Scat asked. “If we move we stay alive a little longer. Maybe we’ll come across somethin’ else.”

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Um...yes, I'm still alive

*cough, choke*

*removes spider webs*


I haven't had much to say lately so I haven't been saying it. Which is quite apparent since the last time I posted a blog post was in November. I feel rather bad about that and I appreciate all of you who have stuck it out during my blog absence. I can't guarantee how frequently I'll post but I will be posting more often.

A lot has gone on in the last four months. Himself has had a few more contracts come his way. I've been told I'm not allowed to go back to work, so I'm dealing with that. I've started writing full time since I have so much free time. I finished a first draft in less than three months. I've now burned myself out on writing but the first draft of Burning Dreams is done. That's the book I started in November, won NaNoWriMo with, and then scrapped at the end of December and started over fresh in January.

I attempted the Amazon Breakthrough Novel contest this year. I didn't make it past the pitch phase. Which is fine. After everything was all said and done, I realized Only A Name, which I thought was finished, really wasn't finished and needs a total overhaul. I'm going to try it again next year, probably with Only A Name again since that's the book that starts everything.

I've also moved. We were living in a small town pretty far out from where we needed to go for shopping and Himself needed to go for work. It was a pain getting to my doctor appointments. Now we live in town and everything is within a 20 minute drive of our new place. We'll have new roommates by the 15th, but for right now it's just us and the cat in the house.

Reidar didn't take too well to the move at first. I think he was rather offended by the fact that I wrapped him in our bath towel and held on for dear life as we drove him back from the old house to the new. We didn't have a cat carrier for him and I needed some way to prevent him from tearing holes in me while Himself drove. He hid himself on a shelf in the bathroom and wouldn't even acknowledge my presence for the better part of a week. He's resigned himself to the new place and has since gone back to flopping on me every chance he gets, but for a while I was beginning to think my cat was going to hate me forever. :D

Things are progressing forward at a slow pace, but good things are coming our way. We're slowly optimistic that things are going to continue getting better. We've embarked on a new chapter in our lives. We're going to see how this one will be written before we progress on.

And because the butterfly is so symbolic of how I feel right now, this picture was posted by user seiyastock on www.morguefile.com.