Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Teaser Tuesday - Phoenix

I've finished reading Phoenix by Kelly Marshall and highly recommend it. What a compelling (and scary) story! Today's Tuesday Teaser is found at 97% on my Kindle. 
"She read the words over and over, felt the indentations created by his pen with her fingers. She clutched the book to her heart."


Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away. You don't want to ruin the book for others.)
  • Share the title and author info too so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers.
For more Tuesday Teasers, click here: Teaser Tuesdays

Monday, December 19, 2011

Teaser Tuesday - Dec 20


Another Tuesday and another Teaser. Today's two sentences are from Phoenix by Kelly Marshall. They're at the end of Chapter 2 at the 4% mark on my Kindle. This is a thriller that will keep you up at night!


"The flash of a million cameras blinded her as she looked out the window. She threw her hands in front of her eyes and stumbled backwards as the building collapsed around her."



Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page. BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away. You don't want to ruin the book for others.)
  • Share the title and author info too so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers.

    For more Tuesday Teasers, click here: Teaser Tuesday

    Saturday, December 17, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Dec 17

    Happy holidays! Welcome to our last Sweet Saturday post for 2011. Today we rejoin our friend Peggy from I.O.U. Sex as she rewards herself for all the hard work required to achieve both better health and weight loss. Tonight she’ll open the envelope containing the private investigator’s report on Mark, her first love. Peg has a unique approach to this momentous occasion.

    Peggy had already used the cosmetics lined up on her bathroom counter—everything from moisturizer to mascara—until she looked like she was ready for a night on the town. She had washed her hair too, and styled it with care, even though she'd be the only one to see it. If Kiki and June were here now, she thought, they would say I've lost my mind. Sometimes she wondered if that would be far from the truth. Still, tonight would be a special occasion, and it demanded extraordinary measures. When the voice in her head said "the envelope, please," she wanted everything to be perfect. If that was silly, so what? Nobody else would know.
    Peggy stood admiring her image in the full length mirror she had installed on the back of her closet door.
    "Geez, Louise. I look pretty damn good, if I do say so myself."
    She marveled at her new slender figure, still amazed that her bulging butt had shrunk enough to fit into size 8 jeans. An orange tank top, layered over a hot pink T-shirt, emphasized her curvy shape and perfectly fit her festive mood. She could hardly believe that was really the Peggy Marshall she knew and loved staring back at her.
    The twinkle in her deep brown eyes turned into a wink aimed at the figure reflected in the glass. She couldn't resist striking a sexy pose, and that made her burst out laughing. Yep, I'm definitely going bananas, she thought. She turned to search for the silver loop earrings in her jewelry chest and hooked them on, then waved to her own reflection before heading down the stairs. At last, she felt ready.
    Peggy's heart beat in time to her footsteps as she marched across the family room to the secretary desk in the corner. She'd felt this same way when waiting to hear if she'd made the Rayette drill team—excited, scared, almost afraid to look at the list posted on the wall of the gym. She knew that whatever she discovered would make a huge difference in her life, both then and now. With a mixture of trepidation and anticipation, she lowered the desk's front panel and reached inside until her hand rested on the oversized envelope she'd hidden there so many months before.
    "Come to mama, you little devil," she said aloud.
    With trembling hands, Peggy pulled the envelope from its hiding place and walked to the kitchen table, placing it on the wooden surface. She felt like an actress at the Academy Awards, waiting to see what the envelope held. She sat down, pulled it closer, and used a knife to slit one end, drawing the blade under the flap until it gaped open. With a deep breath and a silent prayer, she pulled out the contents.

    The details of what was in the P.I.’s report, as well as what Peggy decides to do about her former love, are revealed in the pages of I.O.U. Sex. We’d tell you here, but that would spoil the surprise!

    I.O.U. Sex would make a great holiday gift—for yourself or a friend. It’s available in both eBook and paperback formats from:

    You'll find more Sweet Saturday Samples here: Sweet List

    Tuesday, December 13, 2011

    Teaser Tuesday - Ride to Raton


    Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
    • Grab your current read
    • Open to a random page
    • Share two (2) "teaser" sentences from somewhere on that page
    • Be careful not to include spoilers! (Make sure that what you share doesn't give too much away! You don't want to ruin the book for others.)
    • Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers.

    My Teaser is from Ride to Raton, book two in the Owen Family Saga Series. It's written by Marsha Ward. I'm reading it on my Kindle, and these sentences are at the 19% mark. 


    "You Owen boys always were fools for getting into scrapes. I am just glad Mr. Hilbrands is here to bail you out."

    Product Details

    Saturday, December 10, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Dec 10

    Happy holidays! Thanks for reading today’s Sweet Saturday Sample. If you’ve been following Peggy, from our book I.O.U. SEX, then you know about her healthy living program. It’s taken a while, but by eating healthy foods, exercising, and tracking her daily caloric intake, Peg has finally reached her goal weight. Thrilled when she sees the hoped-for number on her scale, she prepares to collect the rewards she has promised herself. Peggy’s first adventure is at the mall where we join her in a Victoria’s Secret dressing room.

    A few minutes later, the salesgirl returned with her arms full of beautiful lace and silk creations in every conceivable hue—the kind that Peg hadn't purchased since she'd assembled her trousseau. Left alone, she took her time trying on each style, turning to view herself in the mirror from every angle and marveling at how beautiful and feminine they made her look and feel. Even though her body wasn't as firm as it had once been, she didn't look bad, and anything was better than the way she'd been before she lost weight. She glowed with pride.
    Peggy couldn't help chuckling out loud when she read the names on the bras— Extreme Plunge Push-up, Secret Embrace Demi, Strapless Convertible. She wondered what that style converted to and what it would feel like to experience a secret embrace again. After choosing five different bras, Peg wandered around the store picking out two dozen pairs of panties that made her shiver in delight. V-Strings, Bikinis, Cheekies, and Thongs made it into her stack of goodies.
    Thongs? I can't believe I'm buying something so risqué. Kiki would be proud of me.
    When Peggy finally walked out of the store, she wore a gorgeous ecru lace bra and matching bikini panties underneath stylish new sweats. She carried four extra-large pink and white striped shopping bags full of luxurious, if somewhat decadent, lingerie. Her new sweats and pajamas were in size small, all from the Pink Collection. Although Peg worried that the style might be too young-looking for her, the sales girl said she looked hot in them. When she left her old clothes in the dressing room trashcan, she felt as if she'd shed a skin she'd worn for too many years.

    Before the afternoon is over, Peggy has visited more stores than she can shake a stick at and purchased an entire wardrobe for her new and improved body—everything from dresses to jeans, shoes to earrings. But there’s more ….

    As she steered into her driveway, Peggy's thoughts turned to the evening ahead. Tonight she would give herself her biggest reward for achieving her weight loss goal, the prize that had steeled her resistance when chocolate-frosted donuts tempted, a reward even better than all her new clothes.
    Tonight she would open the magic envelope and learn about her first love.

    What’s in the magic envelope? The report from the private investigator—the report that she’s hidden away as her ultimate prize for sticking to a healthy eating program. What will the P.I.’s report reveal? Will she learn where Mark lives? If he’s married or single? And will the P.I. explain why Mark left Dallas all those years ago without a word?



    I.O.U. SEX could be the perfect Christmas gift—especially for those Baby Boomers on your list. You’ll have to admit, the title alone will bring a laugh to any Christmas party or gift exchange! It’s available in paperback from both Create Space and Amazon.com. It’s also available in ebook formats. For more details, click on the “Buy I.O.U. Sex” tab above.

    To read more Sweet Saturday Samples, click here: Sweet List

    [*Photos at the top of this post are from the Victoria’s Secret website.]

    Monday, December 5, 2011

    Boomers and Books on Facebook


    Just a quick note to announce the new Boomers and Books Facebook page. Launched on December 2, the page is a place where we can talk about things we've read, things we think about, and things in our everyday life.


    Join in the fun here: Boomers and Books on Facebook

    Saturday, December 3, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Dec 3


    Having taken a short Thanksgiving break, we’re now returning to our friend Peggy from our book I.O.U. SEX. She is still working hard at healthy living. In fact, she finds herself concentrating on each aspect of her plan to the exclusion of almost everything else in her life. She’s obsessed!

    Peggy increased the incline on her treadmill to a 4% grade and cranked up the speed. Comfortable with the treadmill's pace, she used the remote to turn on the TV. When a rerun of The Rockford Files filled the screen, she smacked her forehead and spoke aloud to James Garner. "Oh my God. There must be hoof prints on my forehead 'cause a galloping dumb-ass just ran across it!"
    Peg almost fell off of the moving belt when she realized she had completely forgotten about the private investigator she'd hired to find Mark. With all the stress after June's mom passing away, her life had been filled with complications. That didn't even include all the changes she'd made to get healthier. She had simply been too distracted to give the P.I. a second thought.
    But why hadn't Hornby contacted her? He'd warned that he had a busy schedule, but surely he had some news about Mark to report by now. Peggy thought back to their meeting and tried to remember their conversation.
    Let's see, he said it would probably take a couple of months, and I told him...
    "Dad gum it." Peggy massaged her forehead with her fingertips, wondering how in the world she could have forgotten something so important. She realized she'd told Hornby to call her only on her cell phone—the old one that had fallen into the swimming pool—and she'd never felt the need to purchase another one. She'd rarely used her cell phone anyhow. No wonder Hornby hadn't contacted her.
    Peggy stopped the machine and headed toward the desk to find the P.I.'s number. She dug through the drawer looking for his business card, her heart beating fast from the workout, coupled with the anticipation of what Hornby might tell her. When she found his card, she took a deep breath and picked up her phone to call his office.

    When the P.I. informs her that he has indeed located her former steady, Peg takes no more chances and tells him to mail her the information immediately, her excitement mounting.
      
    Two days later Peggy sat on the family room couch, munching on thirty-five calories of baby carrots, drinking a bottle of water, and staring at a large brown envelope with Hornby's return address. She wondered what secrets it contained.
    She pulled the packet to her, uncertain whether or not she wanted to look inside. Then she shook her head.
    No. I'm not going to open it yet. I'll save it, like a Christmas gift underneath the tree, until I've reached my goal weight.
    It'll be another incentive for sticking to my healthy living program.
    She smiled at her next thought.
    Like a reward from Santa for being a good little girl.
    She held the envelope tight and walked to the antique secretary desk in the corner of the room. Pulling down the front, she pushed the envelope into a cubby inside and closed the lid.
    There.
    It can stay in its hiding place until I reach my goal weight, and that's all there is to it. Surely that won't take too much longer.

    When Peggy tells Kiki of her decision, Kiki says, “You've got more patience than I do. I would have ripped that sucker open and called Mark faster than you can whistle Dixie."

    But Peggy assures her friend, “Hornby's report will be an incentive to keep me on the straight and narrow…."

    Will Peggy really be able to resist the lure of the envelope’s contents—the key to her search for Mark—and wait to claim her prize? Or will she be like a curious little kid and take a peek inside?


    To read other Sweet Saturday Samples, click here: Sweet List

    Tuesday, November 22, 2011

    WINNER of our "Save a Turkey - Gobble a Book" Blog Tour Contest



    We're delighted to announce that the winner of our "Save a Turkey - Gobble a Book" blog tour contest is ...

    MARILYN!!

    Congratulations! We hope you enjoy your free eBook copy of I.O.U. SEX.

    This blog tour was so much fun for us, especially reading the names of all the favorite dishes listed in your comments. Tofurkey and turkey. Corn pudding, corn bread, cheese potatoes. Pumpkin rolls, pumpkin pie, pistachio salad. Pecan pie too. Our winner Marilyn said she goes straight for the desserts. Just reading the list of favorites was enough to add five pounds to anybody's hips!

    Thank you to everyone who participated. We're glad you enjoyed our tongue-in-cheek look at raising turkeys in your own backyard. Have a glorious Thanksgiving (or autumn season, depending on where you live) and we hope to hear from you again real soon.


    FYI: For info on ordering I.O.U. SEX as an eBook or in paperback, click on the "Buy I.O.U. SEX" tab under the header above.


    Illustration source: http://thanksgiving-greetings.blogspot.com/2010/08/corporate-thanksgiving-greetings.html

    Saturday, November 19, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Nov 19


    Those of you who have been Sweet Saturday Sample fans for the past few weeks have followed the weight-loss efforts of Peggy, one of our characters from I.O.U. Sex. As our excerpt below shows, sticking to her healthy weight loss plan not only means exercise, it also involves making good food choices as she goes about her daily life. Here’s a report on her progress.

    Peggy now walked at a faster clip. As the days of eating healthy foods and exercising progressed, the pounds seemed to melt off her body like a dripping ice cream cone on a hot summer day. She remained diligent about writing in her food journal and counting all those pesky calories—keeping score, just like June had suggested. Sure, there were days when the scales seemed stuck on a number—days when she awoke with a taste for chicken fried steak and mashed potatoes on her tongue—days when she gave in to her cravings with a yummy taste or two. But thank goodness those days were few and far between.
    With the nutrition labels on foods, it became an easy task to quantify each serving, and she found the calorie counts for fresh produce in her food counter paperback. There was even a website where she could look up all kinds of information for any type of fast food, although she didn't often eat at such places. When she did, she always chose healthy items, and even then, she tried to follow her throw-away-half rule—eating half and pitching the rest in the trash.
    The ease of sticking to this food and exercise plan amazed her, making her want to kick herself for not doing it sooner. She now thought of this as her permanent way of life. It was healthy living, period. After all, Peg knew that if she returned to her former junk food days, those blubbery pounds would come right back, and they'd probably bring all their friends with them. She certainly didn't want that.

    Our friend Peg is hanging in there! She’s learning to be aware of what she’s eating, even if she finds herself in a fast food restaurant. Ideally, she’ll choose a salad or other healthy item, but sometimes nothing but a burger will do. With Peg’s “eat half rule” she can cut 500 calories from her meal by simply choosing a Whopper Junior (340 calories) instead of a regular Whopper (670 calories)—and eating only half the Junior (170 calories). Yes, she hates to throw food away, but it’s much better for the food to go to waste rather than going to her waist, right?


    If you’d like to know the calorie and nutrition content of your favorite foods or restaurant items, try the handy-dandy calorie counter at Calorie King. It also offers inspirational stories and advice.

    To connect to all the other Sweet Saturday Samples participants, click here: Sweet List

    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    SAVE A TURKEY - GOBBLE A BOOK

    Blog Hop Tour - November 14-21




    Can suburbanites raise turkeys in their 
    own back yards?

    Recent news articles about home-grown chickens, as well as a discussion of our plans for Thanksgiving, led us to the following questions:

    How about turkeys? Would it be possible to create a personal back yard flock? (Homeowner association rules permitting, of course.)

    Curiosity led us to our computers. The Internet holds a surprising number of articles on this subject.  Here are some turkey facts:

    • It takes a broad-breasted Bronze turkey about 24 weeks to reach a weight of 16 to 25 pounds. (So you need to start planning your home-grown Thanksgiving meal way in advance.)

    • Baby turkeys are called “poults.” (Why? Shouldn’t they be called “turks”?)

    • Turkeys love to be around people. (So you should visit them once or twice a day.)

    • You’ll need a yard or fenced pen measuring at least 75 ft. by 75 ft. - about 1/8 acre - to raise a dozen turkeys. (You could put them in your front yard but that might create a traffic pile-up, so behind your back yard fence might be best.)

    • How to tell a tom from a hen? The toms will fluff out their feathers and start strutting at an early age. (Must be those pesky male hormones.)

    • Detailed instructions are given for slaughtering and plucking. (Not for the faint of heart.)

    We don’t know about the rest of suburbia, but after feeding, watering, and spending quality time with our turkeys, we’re not sure we’d be able to actually eat them. Six months of care, from birth to maturity, would make it awfully hard to swing that axe, especially if our toms looked as handsome as the one pictured below. Instead of gracing our serving platters, our turkeys would probably rule the roost, sit at our expanded Thanksgiving tables, and say, “Pass the chicken, please!”



    So, rather than murder your hand-raised Meleagris gallopavo, we suggest a trip to your local supermarket for an anonymous bird. Or better still, as the theme of this blog tour says, SAVE A TURKEY and GOBBLE A BOOK!

    GIVEAWAY: To encourage you, we're giving away a free eBook download of our novel, I.O.U. Sex. We'll also send you a collection of our favorite recipes for Turkey Day, from our kitchens to yours. To enter, simply comment on this post and include the name of your favorite Thanksgiving (or wintertime) dish. Be sure to also include your email address so we can contact you if you're our winner.

    To connect to other blog tour participants, click here for the master list:  Save a Turkey - Gobble a Book 

    I.O.U. Sex is available in paperback and eBook formats from AmazonBarnes and Noble,  CreateSpace and Smashwords.


    OFFICIAL RULES:
    1.  Have fun!!
    2.  Invite all of your friends. Spread the word!
    3.  This tour starts: Monday, November 14, at midnight (Arizona Time)
         This tour ends: Monday, November 21, at midnight (Arizona Time)
         Winners will be drawn and their names posted by November 25 ***
    4.  Meet and mingle with all the authors on their book pages. Experience
         a new destination at every stop. Participate in every blog contest, and
         be entered for chances to win multiple prizes. Every blog visited is
         another opportunity to win.
    5.  Participation at all blogs is recommended but not required. 
         Remember,the more blogs you hop, the better your chances of 
         winning prizes.
         Every author and book page is waiting to meet and interact with you,
         so please be sure to show them some love.
    6.  Did I mention to have fun? Whoo! Hoo! Here we goooooo!

    *** Authors and book pages have full discretion to choose an alternate winner in the event any winner fails to claim their prize(s) within 72 hours of their name being posted or after notification of win, whichever comes first. Anyone who participates in this blog tour is subject to these rules.

    Sources for turkey facts:

    Photo source:  Wikipedia

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Nov 12


    Happy weekend! Welcome back to our little corner of the world where we are following one of the characters from  I.O.U. SEX on her journey to get healthier. Peggy has vowed to make better food choices and begin an exercise program, and she’s just set off on her first early morning walk around her Dallas neighborhood.

    I'm taking my first steps toward a healthy life, she thought, smiling as she stepped onto the front driveway.
    Barely half a mile later, sweat coated Peggy's body and her breath came in gasps.
    "Whew. Walking's harder than it looks." She stopped and held her side.
    Remembering what she'd read about starting gradually, and determined to complete her route, she slowed her pace but still forged ahead. Right away she realized why so many walkers and joggers wore headphones. Listening to music would be a welcome distraction, make the time pass faster, and probably lift her spirits too.
    She thought back to her days as a Rayette and an Apache Belle.
    Dancing and performing to music was so much fun. Of course, I was also a hundred pounds lighter back then.
    She made a mental note to buy a portable CD player and some country western music. Ken always hated anything with a country twang, but she could listen to whatever she wanted.
    Peggy stopped in her tracks.
    That's the first time I've thought about Ken all morning.
    That thought gave her a stab of guilt. Then she remembered something else she'd read about physical exercise—it was good for body, mind, and spirit—and she could think for herself now.
    Peggy completed her first walk with an ache in her back, a twinge in her knees, and a smile on her face. When she returned home, she went straight to the refrigerator for another bottle of cold water, lifting it high in a toast to herself and her accomplishment. She finished the water and then climbed the stairs to her bedroom, eager to record her feat in her food journal. If what the weight-loss books and articles said was true, limiting her calories to 1,200-1,500 per day, drinking plenty of water, and exercising should result in a one to two pound weight loss each week. She just knew she could do it. In fact, she wrote that on the bottom of the page.
    I can do it!
    She underlined the sentence with three bold strokes.
    Losing all this flab might not be as quick as a hiccup, but by golly, I'll stick with it no matter how long it takes.

    Short term, all these things—eating healthy, limiting calories, exercising, keeping a journal—may seem like simple solutions. But the pathway to health is a crooked one with many turns in the road. Most people need an inspirational goal to keep them on the straight and narrow. What will Peggy’s shining light at the end of the road be?

    Check out “Walk Off Extra Weight” and other inspirational articles on the Real Age website.  This site is the creation of Doctors Mehmet Oz (Oprah’s diet guru) and Michael Roizen, co-authors of YOU: The Owner’s Manual. Here’s the link: Walk Off Extra Weight 

    To connect to all the other Sweet Saturday Samples participants, click here: Sweet List

    Photo source: East Kessler Park (Dallas) Neighborhood Association

    Saturday, November 5, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Nov 5


    “Exercise 101” is a class that should be offered for those of us who haven’t seen the inside of a gym since our school days. Our character Peggy falls into that category. With a plan to limit her calorie intake and get moving, she’s starting a new exercise program. In today’s excerpt, Peg laces up her walking shoes in preparation for hitting the pavement. She’s ready to go!

    Peg got up early the next morning and dressed in her new sweats, eager to tackle her first day of exercise. Following an eating plan she'd outlined the night before, she measured out ¾ cup of Total cereal, sliced a banana on top, and added a cup of 2% milk. She read the nutrition information from the cereal box and milk container, then looked up the calories for a banana in her new book while she ate.
    Only 320 total calories so far. Not too shabby.
    After her healthy breakfast, she grabbed a bottle of water, locked the door behind her, and set her pedometer to zero. She'd already decided early morning would be the best time to walk, before anyone else in the neighborhood was out and about. She'd driven her intended route, measuring the distance to the corner and back with her car's odometer, just to get an idea of how far she wanted to go. She didn't want to bite off more than she could chew, but surely even a two-ton heifer could walk the mile-and-a-half round trip. If—no, when—she mastered that, she planned to gradually increase the distance. Her new pedometer would record how far she was able to go on her first day. Another way to keep score, as June had suggested.
    Standing on the porch, she felt like an explorer starting out on a great adventure, full of hope and maybe a little fear. I'm taking my first steps toward a healthy life, she thought, smiling as she stepped onto the front driveway.

    As we all know, every journey begins with a first step. If you’d like to learn more about Peggy’s foray into the world of healthy eating and exercising, join us here again next Saturday for another peek. Or you can purchase our book, I.O.U. SEX, from AmazonBarnes and Noble, or Smashwords and read more about Peg’s determination to win this battle once and for all.

    Note: For more information on starting a walking program of your own, check out the advice on WebMD’s “Make Your Walk a Workout.” It includes advice for beginners as well as ideas for kicking up the intensity of the exercise. Safety tips are listed too. Here’s the link: Walking

    You'll find more Sweet Saturday Samples here: Sweets

    Saturday, October 29, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Sample - Oct 29

                This week we’re again following Peggy, a character from our book I.O.U. SEX. Peg has finally decided this is the day to start getting healthier. We have all experienced that moment of clarity when change is upon us, but what will Peg do with hers?

                With new resolve and inspiration, Peggy dressed and marched down to the kitchen for her first healthy breakfast. She filled the teakettle with water, set it on a burner to boil, then went in search of something low calorie to eat. She found an orange and several apples in the fridge, leftovers from when she’d made an apple cinnamon cake with citrus glaze topping. Choosing the orange, she stood at the sink and removed the peel with her thumbnail. She bit into the juicy pulp—mmmm, delicious—and wondered how long it had been since she’d eaten fresh fruit without whipped cream or sugar on it.
                While waiting for the kettle to whistle, she went to the pantry for a teabag. In her search, she found two boxes of pop tarts, some sugary cereals, and a container of pancake mix, her usual breakfast choices. She threw it all into the trash. Wherever she looked, junk food lurked on the shelves. She attacked the high-calorie items in the same way she weeded her rose beds—without mercy. Ten minutes later, the trash can overflowed and the pantry’s shelves were almost empty. She reached for a pen and started a list of all the things she’d need to buy at the grocery store later that afternoon.
                Sipping her tea, Peggy added other items to her list—workout clothes, walking shoes, socks, pedometer, notebook, as well as a book that listed the calorie content of foods.
                She’d have to do a lot of preparation to really begin attacking her fat in earnest. Rather than be daunted by the work ahead, Peggy felt energized and optimistic. She grabbed her purse and keys. The Farmer’s Market sounded like a good place to start.

    Even though she didn’t have a lot of healthy foods on hand, Peg made the most nutritious choice available to her—a fresh orange. She’s off to a great start, because she’s now aware of what she’s putting in her mouth! But as many of us know, the real challenge comes as the days turn into weeks. Can Peggy hang in there with her healthy eating plan? Is there some exercise in her future? Will she find something to inspire her to stick with this major lifestyle change?


    Book Title: I.O.U. Sex
    Genre: Women's Fiction / Romance
    Book Rating: R (sex between consenting adults M/F)
    Available in paperback and eBook formats from AmazonBarnes & Noble,  CreateSpace and Smashwords.


    Thank you to J. Gunnar Grey for once again hosting Sweet Saturday Samples. To read posts from other blog hop participants, click here: Sweet List 

    Thursday, October 27, 2011

    BAH-HUMBUG & HAPPY HALLOWEEN!








    Happy Halloween 2011! I live in a little town in far North Texas, population 1,579. There are a few "neighborhoods"--I live in one of them--and everyone else lives out in the country or near the lake. Therefore, all the children from our town and others nearby just LOVE to come "trick-or-treating" on my street. It's a real zoo around here on October 31st! But most of my neighbors have risen to the challenge and decorated their homes and yards for the occasion, as you can see from the photos above.


    For several years now I have shopped at Sam's for some really good Halloween treats to give out, not those tiny candy bars, but full size ones. Needless to say, my house was a popular stop for all those kiddies. However, the year before last I gave out almost 200 treats before I ran out and had to turn the lights off!


    Therefore, last year my husband and I decided to take a Halloween "holiday". We turned out every light inside and outside the house and buttoned down the hatches. Then we left just before dark and drove to a nearby city to have a nice, leisurely dinner. After that we went to Target and strolled the isles in virtual isolation--the place had almost no customers! I guess we were being a bit "Scrooge-like", but we enjoyed the experience so much we've decided to give a repeat performance again this year. "Bah-humbug & Happy Halloween" everyone!

    ~ Miss Pickles (alias Sandra)




    Tuesday, October 25, 2011

    SPOOK-A-LICIOUS BLOG HOP TOUR - Contest Winner

              File:Masca.jpg
         We're pleased to announce that Nay Nay is the lucky winner of an ebook download of I.O.U. SEX. Nay Nay said her favorite Halloween costume would be a Regency ball gown, and she doesn't care if she has the figure for it or not! We feel exactly the same way.
         Thank you to everyone who took the time to leave comments and enter our Spook-a-Licious contest. If we invited everybody who entered to a Halloween party, we'd have: a gothic demon, an Amazon warrior princess, Xena, Cleopatra, a Doraemon character, a Victorian vampire, Scarlet O'Hara, an angel, an Egyptian priestess, a Greek goddess, plus party-goers dressed in gothic fey, a regency ball gown, and a glittery dress with a feathered mask. We'll be the ones in the Annie Oakley and Elvira (Mistress of the Dark) outfits. Wouldn't that be a fun group?
         To find out how to order I.O.U. SEX (as an ebook or in paperback), click on the Buy I.O.U. SEX tab above. And have Spook-a-Licious Halloween!

    Saturday, October 22, 2011

    Sweet Saturday Samples - Oct 22

    We’re here again with another Sweet Saturday Sample. Thank you to everyone who follows this weekly blog hop, and welcome to newcomers who are visiting for the first time today. We appreciate your interest and welcome your comments.

    For the past several weeks we’ve been posting excerpts about Peggy, one of our characters from I.O.U. SEX. This sweet lady just can’t seem to get her weight and related health issues under control. We join her the day after she’s had a heart-to-heart conversation about these topics with her best friends, June and Kiki.

    The next morning, bright Texas sunshine streamed through the plantation shutters in Peggy's bedroom, waking her from a night of restless sleep. She stretched her arms above her head and yawned.
    Peggy looked down at the mounds her body formed underneath the white sheet, thinking they looked like the foothills of the Rockies, with bumps and bulges galore. She sighed. What was wrong with her? Why couldn't she control herself?
    Her thoughts went back to Kiki and June's visit the night before. With their words fresh in her mind, Peggy climbed out of bed and walked into the guest bathroom. She took a long look at her face in the mirror and made a promise.
    This is the day.
    As of right now I am going to eat only healthy foods, keep a food and calorie journal, and start walking. Losing all this flab might be slower than cold molasses, but it's taken me a lot of years to gain it. One way or another, I'm going to get healthy.
    Cross my heart and hope not to die.
    Peggy removed every last stitch of clothing and stood in front of the Weight Watchers scale she'd purchased in one of her lost-cause diet attempts. She followed the directions printed on the front, tapping the scale with her big toe to activate it. When the read-out said "00", she climbed aboard and braced herself for the shock. The glaring truth flashed back at her—217 big ones. Somehow she'd lost three pounds since her last doctor's visit, but the huge number still made her cringe. It's a start, she thought, and I swear I'll never see a number that big again.

    As you’ve probably realized, Peggy isn’t your typical glamorous character from a romance novel or from women’s fiction, but she’s definitely representative of a large segment of the real world. Anyone who’s ever been on the diet merry-go-round understands the challenges Peggy faces. We hope you enjoy following her story as she works to lose her excess pounds, and at the same time joins her two friends in tracking down their high school boyfriends.

    Book Title: I.O.U. Sex
    Genre: Women’s Fiction / Romance
    Rating: R (tastefully written sex scenes between consenting adults – M/F)

    Available in paperback and eBook formats from Amazon, Barnes & Noble,  CreateSpace and Smashwords.  

    To connect with other Sweet Saturday Sample authors, click here: The Sweet List

    Sunday, October 16, 2011

    SPOOK-A-LICIOUS BLOG HOP TOUR

    Where Boo-ks Devour You (October 17-24)



    Thank you for stopping by our blog on the Spook-a-licious Blog Hop Tour. Our post features an excerpt from I.O.U. SEX where Kiki has hatched a daring plan under cover of darkness and enlisted the help of her friend Peggy. Though it isn’t Halloween night, they’re both in disguise and gearing up for their caper. Here’s the scene:

         At on Monday morning, Kiki and Peggy sat in a black rental van behind the Westwood Hotel. An array of electronic equipment filled a black rolling suitcase resting on the seat behind them, concealed beneath Peggy’s patchwork quilt. Kiki folded back the covering, opened the case, and examined the items inside, explaining for the third time that day how everything worked.
         “I know, I know,” Peggy answered.
         Having experienced her friend’s ineptitude with anything electronic, Kiki could only hope that was true.
         The trip to the spy store off Harry Hines Boulevard the week before had opened Kiki’s eyes to a whole new world she’d never known existed. The salesman had eagerly demonstrated the features and uses of each camera in his showcase, telling Kiki more about surveillance than she ever wanted to know. She left with two high quality video systems—one disguised as a smoke detector and the other, a fully-functioning radio alarm clock. Both systems were expensive but offered high-quality video and audio components and included wireless transmitters and receivers. The salesman said both cameras were motion activated, easy to install, and would transmit color photos to receivers in a remote location. Kiki also bought two of the shop’s best digital recorders—part of the equipment she’d leave in the car with Peggy while she went inside. She had spent the night before reading the manuals, checking the built-in monitors, and familiarizing herself with how everything worked. She felt as ready as possible.
         Inside the dark van, the two women looked at each other and shared a nervous giggle. Peggy wore a black turtleneck and slacks with black tennis shoes. Her hair was pulled up underneath a black baseball cap with her brown ponytail sticking out of the hole in the back. Kiki wore a housekeeper’s uniform, her red hair covered with a black wig. She felt like an overgrown kid preparing to go trick-or-treating.
         Kiki looked at her friend and gave a wolf whistle. “You really look skinny in that outfit, Peg. How much weight have you lost?”
         Peggy gasped. “Are you nuts? This is no time to be discussing my size. You’re about to commit a crime, and I’m an accomplice.” She gripped the steering wheel with both hands and stared at Kiki with wide eyes. “Now that we’re here, I’m wondering if maybe we should reconsider. I’m not so sure this is a good idea. The way you described it, it sounded simple. But now that we’re doing it, I feel as jumpy as a skillet full of fleas.”
         “Courage, girl. This is just like when the three of us papered Greg’s house back in ninth grade. We got away scot-free, remember? This is a great plan.”
         “Hmph. That’s what General Custer said and look what happened to him.”

    What’s Kiki’s devious plan and will it succeed? The winner of our giveaway will find out with a free eBook copy of I.O.U. SEX.

    To enter our GIVEAWAY, follow these two steps:
    1.    Leave a comment below telling us what your fantasy costume would be. 
    2.   Include your email address so we can contact you on October 25th if you are the winner!



    The Official Blog Tour Rules are listed below. To continue on the tour and connect with other Spook-a-licious writers, click here: 





    OFFICIAL RULES:
    1.  Have fun!!
    2.  Invite all of your friends. Spread the word!
    3.  this tour starts: Monday, October 17, at midnight (Arizona Time)
         This tour ends: Monday, October 24, at midnight (Arizona Time)
         Winners will be drawn and their names posted October 25 ***
    4.  Meet and mingle with all the authors on their book pages. Experience
         a new destination at every stop. Participate in every blog contest, and
         be entered for chances to win multiple prizes. Every blog visited is
         another opportunity to win.
    5.  Participation at all blogs is recommended but not required. 
         Remember,the more blogs you hop, the better your chances of 
         winning prizes.
         Every author and book page is waiting to meet and interact with you,
         so please be sure to show them some love.
    6.  Did I mention to have fun? Whoo! Hoo! Here we goooooo!


    *** Authors and book pages have full discretion to choose an alternate winner in the event any winner fails to claim their prize(s) within 72 hours of their name being posted or after notification of win, whichever comes first. Anyone who participates in this blog tour is subject to these rules.