Bring On The Red, White and Blue!

Everyone have your fireworks? And a safe place to shoot them off? Okay, then we’re good.  These are our go-to snacks for the Fourth of July!

Today is my Friday so I have a ton of semi-important things to complete. The first of which was moving my things back to my own bedside table. I give up. I can not sleep on the other side. I have to be closest to the door. For some reason I feel trapped unless I’m by the door. Some of that left over pirate blood I guess.

Yesterday OU Boy surprised me with a ton of macarons. And a Chocolate Cupcake with Peanut Butter Buttercream. My mouth was making some really unladylike sounds for about 20 minutes. But I did show some restraint with the Macarons, as I wanted them for breakfast.

This afternoon we have Physical Therapy, or he does, I’m going along because his first visit came with a Massage Certificate and I am all over that. I’m not sure how this holiday thing works with the 4th being on a Tuesday. As for me and mine, we will be parked at the lake. Eating watermelon, cupcakes and homemade ice cream. And slathering on sunscreen.

Have a good one!  And if you know the holiday protocol, let me know.

xx  Patricia    feb17

Grab a cup! It’s Going to get Weird!

This is what I call a working lunch. Nice cup of tea and a yummy salad. I can not even begin to tell you how glad I am that this month is over. The 28th especially. It was a year ago on that date that I woke up blind in one eye and started this year-long process of getting a new one. One of my favorite husbands died on the 28th. OU Boy hurt his back on the 28th. So much like the little boy in the park yesterday, I’m going to just start skipping that date. I refuse to acknowledge you so you do not exist.  All in favor, take a shot of tea!

I do not like to watch kids movies. Except Coraline. And the one with the mouse singing Somewhere Out There. Or Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. But as part of our vacation package, I was obliged to watch 4 of them. I’m pretty sure the kids fell asleep out of boredom. Honestly by Day 3 I was just sitting on the sofa staring into space. We had swam, camped, hiked, golfed, pretended we were on Ninja Warrior, made cards, painted rocks until I couldn’t even think like a grown up anymore.

When did meal time become a negotiation? I’m quite sure my mother put the food on the table and we ate it. Or if it was liver, we at least hid it in a napkin! The 6-year-old is a great eater. She eats anything without complaint. The 4-year-old however wants to negotiate like a pirate. And every time I cave. It’s that little smile and those twinkling eyes, the same ones that get me at 2 a.m. when he wakes me up and asks if I was thinking about a snack too. Using his best British accent. Thanks for that Peppa Pig.

   Who could say no to that face??

So if you are raising kids. I applaud you for not leaving them at the Fire Station. Boys, I can deal with, girls not so much. They talk constantly and I swear if I had to hear the word actually one more time, I was going to trade her to the gypsies for a new cooking pot.

xx Laugh! It takes years off of your face!  Patricia

Happy To Be Back Home!

I’m Back! Does anyone else need a vacation from the vacation? Not only do we need one, but we came home in worse shape than when we left.

OU Boy’s back went out after lifting the last of the supplies out of the truck. He made it to a chair float and then couldn’t get up, so we left him in the lake. It started off so nice. There was no one else about and the deer momma and her babies made a visit and we had found treasure ( treasure is defined as anything the fairies may need or something we can use to make some craft with) in this case we found an entire headdress worth of big duck feathers, 3 dead baby fish, and some really nice rocks.

There was golfing and swimming and running a Ninja Warrior obstacle course where we met a boy who said he was 7 and his birthday is next week and he’s turning 9. “Don’t you mean 8?” we asked. Nope, he says, ” I decided to skip 8 and go to 9.” I mean this boy had a plan! He was going to continue this until he was 25 he said. I had nothing. No come back. Just a confused look. Plus I was a little perturbed I hadn’t thought of that first.

Today I keep wondering why in the world we even have kids! Good Lord, it is like a full-time job when you already have a full time job. And I’m not even going to talk about the bathroom visits they make like we live in a commune or some weird parallel universe where people come in and cheer for you to go potty.

More on that subject tomorrow when I’ve recovered!

xx Patricia

 

Meet Laura Childs Cosy Mysteries! Bring Tea and some Scissors!

It’s been so long since I read the very first Tea Shop Mystery by Laura. And I was instantly in love. This series has a lot of things I love. Tea, Charleston,Recipes and smart and funny characters. Here are a few of the titles!

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The Tea Shop Mysteries – set in the historic district of Charleston and featuring Theodosia Browning, owner of the Indigo Tea Shop. Theodosia is a savvy entrepreneur, and pet mom to service dog Earl Grey. She’s also an intelligent, focused amateur sleuth who doesn’t rely on coincidences or inept police work to solve crimes. This charming series is highly atmospheric and rife with the history and mystery that is Charleston.

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The Cackleberry Club Mysteries – set in Kindred, a fictional town in the Midwest. In a rehabbed Spur station, Suzanne, Toni, and Petra, three semi-desperate, forty-plus women have launched the Cackleberry Club. Eggs are the morning specialty here and this cozy cafe even offers a book nook and yarn shop. Business is good but murder could lead to the cafe’s undoing! This series offers recipes, knitting, cake decorating, and a dash of spirituality

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The Scrapbooking Mysteries – a slightly edgier series that take place in New Orleans. The main character, Carmela, owns Memory Mine scrapbooking shop in the French Quarter and is forever getting into trouble with her friend, Ava, who owns the Juju Voodoo shop. New Orleans’ spooky above-ground cemeteries, jazz clubs, bayous, and Mardi Gras madness make their presence known here!

Laura Childs

Laura Childs is the New York Times bestselling author of the Tea Shop Mysteries, Scrapbook Mysteries, and Cackleberry Club Mysteries. In her previous life she was CEO/Creative Director of her own marketing firm and authored several screenplays. She is married to a professor of Chinese art history, loves to travel, rides horses, enjoys fund-raising for various non-profits, and has two Chinese Shar-Pei dogs.

Laura specializes in cozy mysteries that have the pace of a thriller (a thrillzy!)  I can say I have read every one of her books. She has truly mastered the cosy mystery genre and has now branched out to writing Thrillers! Her first was Little Girl Gone and next to come out will be Shadow Girl. Both Afton Tangler Thrillers. And she has nailed it! I have read them both and she has successfully crossed over to the hard side! OH, and she is writing these under her actual name Gerry Schmitt.

Laura’s latest Tea Shop Mystery is Pekoe Most Poison. So today I’m having some Pekoe and I’m pretty sure it’s not poison!

Give her a try. I’ve never been to a library that didn’t have them all, so you can try before you buy!

xx Happy Weekend

Today’s Cosy Author is J.R.Ripley

Continuing on with the themed cosy mystery genre, today I’m introducing you to another favorite of mine.

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This is the Bird Lover’s Mystery Series. Book 4 will be out July 11th and you will see that review soon. Amy and her merry band of friends run Birds & Bees in Ruby Lake, North Carolina. I love the characters in this series. They range in age from teens to retirees. And I wasn’t that much of a bird person before, but I’m turning into one!

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Welcome to Table Rock, Arizona, the place where folks who aren’t too keen on the ‘mainstream’ move to. Maggie Miller has come here to forget about her dead husband. OK, so he isn’t really dead. That’s just what she tells everybody. Recently divorced, Maggie flees Phoenix and the sight of her husband and his new wife and moves to Table Rock to be closer to her own family. She’s also planning on opening her own beignet and coffee business, Maggie’s Beignet Café. The Maggie Miller Mystery Series is just funny. The characters in this town are outrageous, but in a good way!

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Pet chef Kitty serves gourmet meals to pampered canines, cats, birds, snakes (ugh), Vietnamese pot-bellied pigs and most any other pet belonging to her wealthy and quirky L.A. clientele. This is a town where pets have their own psychologists, psychics and masseuses, so why shouldn’t they have their own chefs, right? A Kitty Karlyle Mystery!

J. R. Ripley

J.R. Ripley is the critically acclaimed author of multiple series and currently pens A Bird Lover’s Mystery Series, the Maggie Miller Mysteries and the Kitty Karlyle gourmet pet chef mysteries. J.R. is a member of the American Birding Association, the American Bird Conservancy, and is an Audubon Ambassador with the National Audubon Society. Before becoming a full-time author, J.R. worked at a multitude of jobs including: archaeologist, cook, factory worker, copywriter, technical writer, editor, musician, entrepreneur and window washer. You may visit jrripley.net for more information or visit JR on Facebook at facebook.com/jrripley.

Although written under different pen names, they all come from the mind of this genius of a man who is passionate about birds, writing and the planet in general. I always know  I’m going to get a good read with one of his books.

So we have, Birds, Dogs/Cats, and Beignets in the desert. Give him a try! And if you are a Netgalley  member, check it out on the site. You may get the latest copy of one of these! Thank you to Lyrical Underground, Penguin Random House, Severn House for keeping me stocked!

Caramel Crush( A Cupcake Bakery Mystery) by Jenn McKinlay

Caramel Crush (Cupcake Bakery Mystery, #9)

After the near miss at the altar in Vegas, Mel knows she still wants to marry Joe, but Angie is the only bridezilla they can handle at the moment! And that is a full-time job.

When an old roommate from college shows up and asks Mel for a favor, because apparently Mel owes her for some mysterious event in college, of course she says yes. Diane is a bit vague on the break up but wants Mel to deliver a batch of Caramel Crush cupcakes to her soon to be ex, with an  It really is you, not me theme.

When Mel finds the intended, he isn’t in any shape to be eating cupcakes or anything else as he is now dead. As Mel tries to find out who killed him and why, she is still having to deal with Angie, who is about to have a total melt down over the wedding.

Along the way Mel has to deal with all of the mean girls from Freshman year at college and they have only gotten worse over the years. I felt so bad for her. I mean we all know Freshman year is awful. But when you are carrying around an extra 75 pounds or so, it is even worse. Even though Mel has blossomed into a beautiful woman, the memories and the barbs still hurt, but Diane keeps reminding her that she owes her big, so on she goes with her investigating!

I love all of these characters. And now I’ve read the latest one and will have to wait for more bakery goodness. The recipes in this one are super easy but oh so good!

I hope you enjoy it too! And what better to have a Caramel Cupcake with than Bigelow’s Salted Caramel Tea!

 

Image result for caramel cupcake                      Image result for salted caramel tea

xx Patricia

Checking Out The Cosy Mysteries! With a snack…

Grab a cuppa and get ready to meet some talented cosy mystery authors and their books!

Today  we are looking at the different types of cosy mysteries and what draws a reader to a certain author, their characters or the subject matter. Most cosy mystery writers have more than one series going at once. How they do that I don’t know, but they do.

Today’s spotlight author is Jenn McKinlay. She has three different series going! And all of them I love. The books above are from her Library Lover’s Mysteries.

The ones above are from her Cupcake Bakery Mysteries. Including recipes! I’m reading the latest one Carmel Crush now. So if you are into cupcakes, this may be for you!

And here we have the Hat Shop Mysteries. How one author can come up with three of my favorite things is a mystery to me, but I’m so happy to have found her!

Here’s some stuff about Jenn:

 Jenn is the New York Times, Publisher’s Weekly, and USA Today bestselling author of several mystery series and will be debuting her women’s fiction series on May 30, 2017, starting with the title About a Dog. She lives in sunny Arizona in a house that is overrun with kids, pets and her husband’s guitars.

Jenn McKinlay

Grab a book and some tea and enjoy the sunshine!

20170419_135150~4    Patricia

 

Peaches, Cobblers and Mysteries!

Feeling all peachy this morning! So I’m going to share a recipe with you!

This is my Momma’s Peach Cobbler recipe, which if you are in the south may be your Momma’s recipe also. This is the only recipe I know by heart. And last night I baked a cobbler. Yes, yes I did. And it was delicious and now I have a tummy ache, because my mouth is basically a whore and my tummy is a nun. They fight. It’s not pretty.

That juicy cobbler in the second row, first picture? That’s it. There is no rolling out of crust or dough of any kind, It is easy peasy and delicious! We had it with Harney&Sons Paris Tea and it was a party in my mouth!

Momma’s Cobbler:

1 stick of butter ( don’t use fake butter)

3/4 cup of flour

Dash of salt

2 cups granulated sugar

2 cups of sliced peaches

2 tsp. Baking powder

3/4 cup of milk

*One thing I have changed about this recipe is I also toss in a few drops of Almond Extract. It’s a whole different experience!

First set the oven to 350 degrees. Plop that entire stick of butter in a glass baking dish and stick it in the oven to melt.

Take the peaches and mix 1 cup of the sugar and let them hang out for a few minutes

Now mix everything else together and whisk. It should be thin. Now, take that bubbly butter goodness out of the oven and pour the batter over it evenly. Now, be nice with the peaches and lay them across the batter. ​DO. NOT. STIR. NO. NO. NO.  Leave it in there for around an hour. When it’s not jiggly remove it and try not to burn your tongue!

You don’t stir it because the butter and the batter are magic and they combine and fold right over the fruits and Voila! A cobbler to die for! And I use this same recipe on Blueberries, Blackberries and I guess you could use most fruit.

Susan Furlong writes the  Georgia Peach Mysteries, so check her out. I hope you enjoy !

xx Patricia

Vanilla Beaned (A Cupcake Bakery Mystery) by Jenn Mckinlay

Vanilla Beaned (Cupcake Bakery Mystery, #8)

In the eighth in the New York Times bestselling series by the author of Dark Chocolate Demise, the Fairy Tale Cupcake crew goes double or nothing in Vegas…
 
Melanie Cooper and Angie DeLaura are taking a gamble by opening their first franchise of the Fairy Tale Cupcakes Bakery, so where better to hit the jackpot than in Vegas? Business manager Tate Harper has lined up a meeting with Holly Hartzmark, a former showgirl who’s looking to bring Mel and Angie’s sweet treats to Sin City, but Mel isn’t so sure she’s ready to hand her recipes over to a complete stranger—especially one as brash as Holly.

But after the potential bakery location gets blown up, Mel begins seeing another side to Holly—one that reminds her very much of herself. Determined to help a kindred spirit, Mel sets out to discover who is trying to keep the bakery from cashing in. But with a murderous mischief-maker on the loose, the odds are stacking up against a happy ending for Mel and her friends…

I’ve been looking for more cosy mystery authors and series lately. Mainly because I normally read horrendous serial killer type things and I wanted some lighter reading to balance that out and I do no like romance stories.

Imagine the shock and awe in the shock and awe that happened when I stumbled across this series. A Cupcake Bakery Mystery?? With Recipes?? Different people click with different cosy mysteries. I really dislike the ones where the girl is always schlumping around looking disheveled and not being able to decide between men, or the ones that have the main character doing everything but making coffee/tea/pastry.

This group of colorful characters, Mel, Angie and Tate are great characters. I read all the way up to this one, because I have the one that comes next, and reading it was a joy. The characters are all believable, well-developed and smart. And boy can they bake a cupcake! I spent every chapter whining about wanting a cupcake! So imagine my joy when the recipes were in the back of the book!!!

Jenn McKinlay has found herself a home on my shelf and in my blog!

 

Image result for cherry cola cupcake  Yummy!!

Give them a read and let me know what you think!

It’s Time For The Weekend!

Good Morning fellow people of the page! I woke up to a man on a ladder outside my window this morning. He was changing out an upstairs window but good grief man it’s Saturday! 9 a.m. or so would have been just fine!

Last night was the final Reign. I’m not even going to lie. I cried like a 3 month old getting his first shots! And The Originals wasn’t much better! I’m still not sure what happened at the end there. So if someone can explain that to me, please do!

OU Boy showed up with dinner last night, so I didn’t have to eat cereal at 10 at night. Thank you kind sir! However the sweets fairy was nowhere to be found. She is such a stingy bitchy thing sometimes.

I’m making a pitcher of Tazo Passion tea this morning for later. If you liked it hot, you’ll love it over ice! It’s a burst of happy for your mouth!

We are under another Heat Threat today so make sure you stay hydrated and please for the love of all that is holy, dress for the body you have, not the one you want. Please. (Lady next door).

xx  Be Kind and Be Calm5ef7878b0fbf3afdf2e4b161bcf6652e