Blog Tour with Giveaways

Lots of people are entering my $75 Cozy Cash Giveaway. Don’t miss out on your chance to win a Murphy-themed basket of goodies with a $75 VISA gift card. To enter, click here: $75 COZY CASH GIVEAWAY.

While you’re there, I hope you’ll also follow the blog tour. To find out where I’ve been and see which stops offer other prizes, click HERE. At the bottom of the page, click “Reviews,” and each of the reviews that show up have a link to that particular blogger’s post. Have fun!

$75 Cozy Cash Giveaway!

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The blog tour for Trust My Heart has officially started, and I have some exciting details to pass along. Over the next three weeks, I’ll be appearing on a lot of different blogs. There will be opportunities to win free books on several of them, but one lucky winner will receive an awesome Murphy-themed basket of goodies with a $75 VISA gift card.

To check out the tour and enter the giveaway, click here. But hurry! The tour ends 11/23.

Writer Wednesday – Our Sweet, Lovable Fur Babies

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For our Writer Wednesday post this month, my Firebird friends and I are talking about our pets. I’ve had lots of special fur babies over the years. Tiggy, my first cat as an adult, used to “hug” me when I picked him up, wrapping his front paws around my neck and burying his face in my hair.

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Here is Suki and her pal Itsy. Suki (the Siamese) loved to play fetch. She had a little rubber mouse that she would drop at our feet and meow for us to throw it for her. This would go on until we finally wore her out. After a good nap, she was ready to go again.

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Smudge was a solid white cat who was completely deaf. As a kitten he had two gray smudges on top of his head. The smudges faded and disappeared, but the name stuck. He was super sweet and loved to go for walks and car rides, the longest of which was from Florida to Connecticut and back. We used to get a lot of double-takes on the dog walks at rest areas. Here he is in Virginia.

Our last two cats to pass away were Itsy at 14 and Suki at 17 1/2 years old. We’re now a one-cat family, which hasn’t been typical for us. Midnight is enjoying being king of the house. He likes sitting in my lap as I write. I think he’s critiquing.

Midnight in dining room

 

He also loves boxes. It doesn’t matter how small. I call this pic, “How to fit 17 pounds of feline blubber into a 7×10 box.”

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Recently Midnight discovered something that he likes even better than boxes. My mom got him his first catnip toy. That black blob you see is a stoned cat.

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After years of having only cats, we rescued two long-haired dachshunds, Morgan and Bailey. We lost Bailey to an enlarged heart, but her sister Morgan is still with us. She likes my husband, but she’s super attached to me.

 

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Morgan’s favorites things are whatever Mommy is doing, whether it’s something fun, like sailing…

 

 

 

 

Morgan in yard

 

…or just hanging out while Mommy writes.

 

 

 

 

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Today, though, she’s having a rough time. She had to have 12 teeth extracted. Doesn’t she look sad? But now as I write this, she’s sleeping peacefully beside me, having had a dose of doggie morphine.

 

 

What about you? Do you have, or have you had any especially memorable pets? (I know, they’re all special!) To check out my friends’ lovable fur babies, click the links below.

Tamra Baumann – Priscilla Oliveras – Sharon Wray

 

First Review of Trust My Heart

Trust My Heart coverTrust My Heart has its first review, on Deena Peterson’s “Just One More” blog. She says, “Carol has created an engaging story and memorable characters and this is a great end-of-summer book!” and “…this comedy of errors warmed my heart.” Click here to read the rest of the review. Trust My Heart will be release October 25, but is available for preorder now at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Writer Wednesdays – What’s in My Purse?

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The Firebirds skipped our July edition of Writer Wednesdays, since several of us were getting ready for the Romance Writers of America Conference in San Diego, but we’re back for August. This month, we’re showing what’s in our purses.

I have all the usual boring stuff, like my wallet, checkbook and note pads. But I found a few interesting things in there, too.

Like two bank envelopes…20160809_235458

I had hoped there was money in them that I had forgotten about, but unfortunately, they were both empty. (I did find $30 last week, though, in the pocket of a pair of shorts I hadn’t worn in some time.)

 

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Of course, my keys stay in my purse. The rectangular purple one is my gym key, and the boomerang key chain was given to me by a lovely writer friend from Australia, Catherine Rull.

 

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I also have quite a few in-case-of-emergency items, like a mini-sewing kit, ear plugs, Burt’s Bees lip balm, a small plastic bag of topical items like antiseptic, Blistex and sunscreen, and a small bottle of Aleve (which actually holds whatever kind of headache medicine we happen to have on hand at the time, currently Advil).

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And what writer doesn’t carry bookmarks and business cards? And of course, lots of pens, most of which are imprinted with names of other writers or writing organizations. I currently have pens in my purse from Elizabeth Heiter, Lynda Bailey, Sandra Owens, The Golden Network (Golden Heart finalists), and my own RWA chapter, TARA (Tampa Area Romance Authors).

One thing I realized that I don’t have in my purse is pictures of my kids and grandkids, except what’s on my phone. But since I carry my phone in my purse, I guess that counts.

 

Click the links below to find out what’s in my writer friends’ purses.

Tamra Baumann – Kay Hudson – Tosha (TL) Sumner –  Priscilla Oliveras – Wendy LaCapra

 

 

 

 

 

 

Some More Good News!

Although I didn’t bring home a RITA, I did have a great time at the Romance Writers of America Conference last month. But now it looks like Mistletoe Justice might have a shot at another award. I’ve received notification that it is a finalist in the Royal Palm Literary Award Competition.

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Winners will be announced at the awards ceremony at the Florida Writers Association Conference in October. This means I get to buy another gown, right?

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Writer Wednesday – My Favorite Vacation

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We’re back for the June edition of Writer Wednesday. This month, we’re sharing some highlights of our favorite vacations. It’s hard for me to chose a favorite vacation, because I’ve had so many good ones.

Like the ones that we spend with our kids in New England. After being raised in Florida, both of our girls married Navy guys stationed in Groton, Connecticut. I wouldn’t want to live there in the wintertime, but New England is beautiful the rest of the year. We especially enjoy hiking…

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and visiting waterfalls…

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And checking out some of the other sights, like the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular at Roger Williams Park in Providence, Rhode Island. Yes, these are actually real carved jack-o-lanterns.

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Dancers

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We’ve also had some fun vacations aboard our sailboat. We started sailing in 1989 when we bought a Compac 16 from my husband’s uncle. We sold our last boat, a MacGregor 26, last year and haven’t gotten a replacement yet. Over the years, we’ve had some really good times with our kids and, more recently, our dog Morgan. She loves sailing. Actually, she loves going anywhere that Mommy and Daddy go.

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But one of our favorite kind of vacations is a cruise. Cruises are a really economic way to vacation, when you consider that lodging, meals and entertainment are all included. We’ve been to the Bahamas, the Eastern Caribbean and the Western Caribbean. The last cruise we took was to New England and Canada. It was June, and this Florida girl almost froze. Our first stop we bought windbreakers. (My sweaters weren’t cutting it.) Our second stop we bought knit caps and gloves. Our third stop, I bought a couple of scarves. It was quite different from cruising the Caribbean, but we had a great time.

A few highlights from that trip…a lighthouse in Maine (I think)…

Lighthouse

Hiking in St. John, New Brunswick…

New Brunswick, hiking

The fort in Halifax, Nova Scotia… This guy wouldn’t even twitch, no matter what you said to him.

Guard at Fort, Halifax

Halifax Public Gardens…

Halifax Public Gardens

On the front of a sailboat on Bras d’Or Lake at Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia…

Sailboat

Alexander Graham Bell’s mansion on the shores of Bras d’Or Lake…

Bell Mansion

And of course, no cruise is complete without towel art!

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The final highlight of that trip was being stranded in baggage claim in the Orlando airport because the weather was too bad to unload the plane. Some members of a high school band, also stranded, pulled out their instruments and proceeded to entertain us tired passengers with music, song and dance.

Baggage claim

What about you? What particularly memorable vacations have you had? Check out what fun my writer friends have had by clicking the links below.

Tamra Baumann – Kay Hudson – Tosha (TL) Sumner – Sharon Wray – Jean Willett