Posted in Blog tour

Middle Grade Young Adult Book Blog Hop

Okay, gang. I'm condensing this now that we have the bugs worked out. Please share at any other MG/YA/Children's sites you belong to so we have make it a "kick booty" hop! Here's the poster:

Hello everyone! I hope all is well with you. Well the Christmas season has officially started. Ho! Ho Ho! There’s no better way to start it off than with a blog hop!

That’s right! A Christmas Blog Hop! Since I’m participating in this event, I thought I’d share with you my favorite Christmas movie. It’s a kid’s movie, but I never get tired of it. That movie is “Polar Express.”

I love the message in that story. It reminds us what Christmas is truly all about. I remember the first time I saw it. It was in a movie theater and I had taken my two boys to see it with me.

They sat in their seats, mesmerized by the big screen and Tom Hanks did an excellent job as the conductor. I can’t imagine anyone else in that role, can you?

It’s the story of a young boy who has stopped believing in Santa. He wakes to the sound of a train and it takes him on a wild ride. During his time on the train, he learns the true meaning of friendship and the need to just believe. It’s a heartwarming story and I recommend it for all ages.

Chris Van Allsburg wrote the book the movie is based on. Here’s the cover and blurb below.

                                                                 

Since its publication in 1985, Chris Van Allsburg’s holiday classic has sold millions of copies and has come to signify the essential spirit of Christmas for countless readers. 

Readers young and old are sure to treasure this inspiring book, which brings to life the magic of Christmas for all who believe.

Now for the giveaway! I’m giving away a fifteen-dollar Amazon gift card to one lucky winner! In addition, I’m giving away two eBook copies of one of my Super Spies books, the winner gets their choice. Below are the covers and blurbs!

The Super Spies and the Cat Lady Killer 500x750This book opens in a small town in Michigan where fifteen-year-old Sarah Cole is stuck spending the summer at her Aunt and Uncle’s with her sister, Lacey. She’s not happy with the situation until she befriends a girl named Jackie. The three girls stumble upon the ruthless murder of a reclusive neighborhood woman. One of the officers investigating the crime believes the girls are responsible for her death. Fearing that this officer will frame them for the murder, the girls organize their own detective squad. They become the Super Spies and start their own fact-finding mission.  The Super Spies can’t understand why anyone would want to murder the “Cat Lady” until they start digging into her past and discover a horrible crime that happened thirty years ago. They uncover a connection between the two crimes and attempt to bring this information to the police, only to be reprimanded for meddling in the inquest. Not only are the girls upset by the admonition, but they also struggle with the fact that their exuberant investigating could provide a legal loophole allowing the killer to go free. To make matters worse, the police don’t even believe them. Frustrated by this turn of events, the Super Spies realize it’s up to them to snare the Cat Lady killer, or die trying…

TheSuperSpiesandtheHighSchoolBomber 500x750This book opens in a small town in Michigan where Sarah and her sister Lacey are now living with their Aunt and Uncle. Still reeling from the fact her parents have disappeared, Sarah starts the school year with her new friend Jackie Jenkins. When Sarah learns the school has been bombed, she’s filled with dread. Uncle Walt is a teacher, and he was in the school when the bomb exploded. Taking matters into her own hands, Sarah decides to search for him. The rest of the Super Spies are right behind her. When a fireman chases them away from the school, Sarah becomes suspicious. She decides to investigate. The FBI arrives on the scene. Sarah realizes this bombing could have even bigger implications. Searching for the bombers, Sarah is introduced to the world of terrorism. She fears that the bombing and her parents’ disappearance are connected and terrorists are involved. To make matters worse, the bombers are determined to finish the job. Can the Super Spies find the bombers before it’s too late?

TheSuperSpiesandthePiedPiper 500x750Sarah Cole and her sister Lacey are at it once again when their missing parents’ cell phone is traced to Alden, Michigan. When the FBI declines to continue the investigation, Sarah takes matters into her own hands. She calls upon the Super Spies and they delve into the situation. Suddenly the teens find themselves immersed in small town intrigue and mystery involving a menacing stranger, who Sarah dubs “The Stalker.” But when Sarah finds out he’s connected to her parents’ disappearance she’s determined to find out what that connection is. The Super Spies embark on a journey that leads them into a web of corporate corruption at its highest level that leaves innocent victims in its wake. Can the Super Spies stop the greedy corporation before it’s too late?

So how do you enter? Easy! You Tweet or Facebook share this giveaway or about my Super Spies books. Post the tweet or share in the comments section below along with your e-mail address.  I will draw names on December 16th and notify the winners!  🙂

Don’t forget the other authors in the hop! They’re giving prizes away too! Just click the links below!

1. www.beforehappilyeverafter.com/Blog                                               Before Happily Ever After

2. sharonledwith.blogspot.com/                                                                                 Sharon Ledwith

3. Kaitlin Bevishttp://www.kaitlinbevis.com/blog                                                            Kaitlin Bevis

4. ritamonette.blogspot.com/                                                                                      Rita Monette

5. www.mindyhardwick.wordpress.com                                                                  Mindy Hardwick

6. bassetbones.wordpress.com                                                                                      Mindy Mymudes

7. www.weigandchris.com                                                                                                Christina Weigand

8. stinsonsara.wordpress.com/                                                                                               Sara Stinson

9. lisaorchard.wordpress.com/                                                                                                Lisa Orchard

10. www.jenniferlhotes.com/2013/07/07/lucky-no-its-all-because-of-you/   Jennifer L. Hotes

11. www.klpickett.weebly.com                                                                                                      K.L. Pickett

 

Advertisements
Posted in Guest Author

Please Welcome Jodi DeSautels as she shares her Favorite Cookie Recipe with Us!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I’ve got Jodi DeSautels with us today and she’s sharing her Applesauce Cookie Recipe with us along with her awesome book! Take it away Jodi!

Hi everyone! I want to wish all of you a Happy Thanksgiving as well as a Happy Hanukkah! Lisa, thank you for inviting me to share a recipe.

I first tasted these applesauce cookies when I was a teenager and went square dancing. Yes, I used to do western style square dancing. No, that isn’t the same as a barn dance, but similar. Anyway, I enjoyed the recipe so much that I asked for the recipe. The baker was a dear, sweet woman named Doris. Enjoy!

Please feel free to contact me and connect with me at any of my sites.

Applesauce Cookies

 1 cup sugar

½ cup shortening

1 egg, beaten

1 cup applesauce

2 cups sifted flour

½ tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. cloves

½ tsp. salt

Cream sugar and shortening, add beaten egg, and then the applesauce.  Sift together dry ingredients.  Combine with creamed mixture, stirring well.  Drop by teaspoon-fulls on oiled cookie sheet.  Bake 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees.  Yields about 48 cookies.  *Note: ½ cups chopped raisins or nuts are optional.  (I don’t put these in.)

This is a wonderful concept book that targets both colors and feelings. It would be great for school teachers, parents, grandparents and child psychologist to use to help children express their feelings in a healthy way as well as practice colors.Clarinda Cloud has various feelings. With each feeling her face shows that feeling and she turns different colors. When she shares her feelings, she turns back to a white cloud with a happy face.

Wonderful discussions could stem from reading this book with children. “This is Clarinda Clouds angry face, what is your angry face?” for example

The reading level is set at first grade. However, considering the basic concepts of color and feelings and the repetition of the text, the audience level could spread from age 2 to 6.

You can find Jodi at these various sites.

Here is Clarinda Cloud’s webpage…. www.ClarindaCloud.com

my education site… www.DUOEducation.com

my author site… www.AuthorJodiDesautels.weebly.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanks for stopping by Jodi and sharing your book and cookie recipe with us!

November’s Tween Meme

Hello Everyone! I hope all is well with you today! It’s November’s Tween Meme today and I thought I’d touch on a topic I discussed earlier this year.   That topic is Volunteering.

The Tween and Teen years are filled with new challenges and new emotions. It’s the first time our young people are testing their boundaries, which makes these years exciting and frightening at the same time.

So, it’s not surprising that they make some incorrect choices. 🙂 In the past, I’ve said that parental involvement and keeping kids active in sports are ways to combat some of these negative choices. I still believe that parental involvement is very important in developing positive behaviors, but what about the kids who aren’t interested in sports? Some kids just don’t have any inclination in that direction.

Well, I’ve thought about this and I’ve discovered a solution. 🙂  That solution is volunteering. That’s right. I came across a wonderful organization that encourages young people to volunteer and I’m very impressed by it.

In fact, I’m working with them on a project and I’m very excited about it! But, there will be a whole blog post about that as soon as we get all the details ironed out. 🙂  So stay tuned for that. 🙂 The organization is called VOLUNTEENATION and here’s the link to their website. Check it out! http://www.volunteennation.org/.  This is a national organization which means they have volunteer opportunities all throughout the United States.

I’m sure you all have heard one of the best ways to combat depression is by helping others…I believe this applies to tweens/teens as well and that’s what volunteering is all about.

What I love about this organization is that young people are working with other students that are the same age. They aren’t at home closed off in their rooms brooding about their problems. Volunteering takes their focus off of their issues and gets them moving in a positive direction.  In my opinion, this could lead to more fulfilling friendships because they’re working together toward a common goal.

Another positive effect this type of organization has is that there are certainly instances where young people can utilize/learn leadership skills as well as team building skills. This expertise is necessary for the working environment.

Maybe if we got our kids involved in volunteering we’d have fewer disasters like Columbine and Newtown.  Food for thought, wouldn’t you say?

I can’t say enough about this organization; it’s getting our young people headed in the right direction.

Thanks for reading my post today! I’d love to hear your thoughts! Please leave a comment and let me know what you think! 🙂

Posted in Guest Author

Please Welcome Sara Stinson as she shares one of her Favorite Recipes with us!

Lisa,

Thank you for having me today.  I’m excited to be here and ready to share one of my favorite recipes.

Living in the south, we cherish recipes handed down by our families.  I have several diverse and delicious recipes given to me by my mother and father.  Both were great cooks!  I decided to choose one of the items Dad had on his menu.

Not many people know, but my father, Fred Calhoun, owned a restaurant when he was very young, and one of his best sellers was his chili for hotdogs.  Through the years, this recipe has been enjoyed for many different occasions.  Many times, the chili made a hit at a birthday party or even at Christmas.

The following is his recipe.  Please try it sometimes and let me know what you think!  Enjoy!

FRED’S CHILI FOR HOTDOGS

Ingredients:

3 lbs. hamburger meat

4 large onions

3 24 oz. ketchups

5 Tbsp. chili powder

1 Tbsp. salt

Directions:

Cover hamburger meat in hot water in a big boiler.  Mash and stir the hamburger meat until all is separated and not lumpy.  You can use your hands or a fork.  Continue to stir and keep the meat separated while the meat browns or it will lump.  When the meat is cooking good, add the seasonings and onions.  Simmer for about 30 minutes.  Cut off.  Add ketchup and stir together.  Do not cook anymore.   It is ready for the hotdogs!  (I have found that cheap ketchup is the best.)

***

After you enjoy your meal, you can sit back and enjoy a good book.  Finger Bones and Wendy has been enjoyed and read by all ages.  It is written for anyone in the third grade and up.  Here is a summary of the book.

Finger Bones has been sending ghosts to their next destination for years. Now it’s Wendy’s turn.
The Bridgeville Clipper announces Finger Bones is dead at 122-years of age. Wendy is not upset. He will be back. Finger Bones and Wendy have unfinished business in this small town.

When ten-year-old Wendy Dee Winkelmann needs to do some serious thinking she likes to chew bubblegum. While sitting on a bench reading, she becomes friends with an old man the townspeople call, Finger Bones. Some locals consider him odd and spread rumors about the ghastly man who lives up a dirt road in an ramshackle cabin. Yet Wendy soon discovers this old man, who walks to town with a burlap bag tied to a stick, has a special job. He sends ghosts to their next destination, and the stick and burlap bag he carries are magical.

Now Wendy chases the lingering spirits. Soon she finds herself caught up in a devious plan of a dark sinister power, and if it means hurting someone, or worse, it will do whatever is necessary to succeed. It’s all up to Wendy to save Bridgeville before the evil power takes over the town.

***

AVAILABLE IN DECEMBER:

BOOK TWO:  Finger Bones and the Ghost Dog

In this story, we meet a loveable yellow lab named Max.  Max is a ghost dog and has returned to the small town of Bridgeville to help save his previous owners, Ryan and Shelley Dumpsters, before it is too late. He has a quest, and Wendy and the team are in the center of this ghostly adventure.

LINKS:

sarastinson.com

stinsonsara.wordpress.com

The Finger Bones Series on Facebook

Finger Bones and Wendy is available on Amazon in paperback and e-book format.

Thanks so much Sara for sharing your yummy recipe with us today!

Posted in Guest Author

Please Welcome Kristin Wallace as she shares her new release with us!

Hello everyone! I hope all is well with you! I’ve got Kristin Wallace here today and she’s sharing her New Release, “Marry Me,” with us! Check it out!

Marry Me

A Covington Falls Chronicle

MarryMe-KristinWallace-500x750

 

By Kristin Wallace

 

Marry Me is a contemporary inspirational romance set in the fictional, Southern town of Covington Falls.

Julia Richardson is no fan of weddings. A lifetime of watching her parents treat relationships like the flavor of the month has taught her that love is for fools. Then a crisis has Julia returning to the small Southern town she’s been avoiding for years. Before she knows it, Julia’s been pressed into service running her stepsister’s wedding planning business. Julia doesn’t know a garter from a garden hose, but now she must navigate couples along the bumpy path down the aisle. In the midst of it all, Julia makes the most unexpected discovery of all…love, with widowed minister, Seth Graham. Julia’s been running from love and everything spiritual for most of her life. It’s not until she finds the courage to stop running and learns to believe in the power of love, faith and family that she finds her own “I Do” moment.

Marry Me is available as an ebook at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and AstraeaPress.com

Excerpt:

(Julia and Seth see each other for the first time in 15 years…)

“Come on, Seth is around here somewhere,” Eric said. “Let me introduce you. Oh, wait… I forgot. You two know each other, don’t you?”

“Yeah, but we weren’t exactly friends,” Julia said.

In the distance, she spotted a group of men helping to set up the field. She searched for a geeky-looking beanpole, but her eyes stopped on a beautifully built, dark-haired man. All she could see was the back of him. He was tall, with shoulders a mile wide, and long, powerful legs.

Who knew they grew such delicious specimens down here in Covington Falls?

“Hey, Seth!” Eric called out. “Look who I found.”

All the men turned, including the delicious one. Oh, yeah. Mr. Tall Guy was wonderful from the front, too. Nicely crafted masculine features. Julia couldn’t quite make out the eye color, but she had a feeling they were spectacular as well. Their eyes met, and she felt a little jolt. “This one,” a voice reflected in her head. His eyes widened, and Julia knew he felt it, too. If they were in a movie this would be the moment when violins swept into a chorus and drums started pounding.

Then he frowned, and his expression became shuttered. He broke away from the group and started over in her direction. That’s when it dawned on her exactly who she’d been drooling over.

The drums turned to clanging bells.

Oh… my…

The breath lodged in her throat. There was no way the geeky boy she’d known had grown into… him! But somehow he had. She stiffened even more when she recalled this gorgeous man was also a minister.

Can you get struck by lightning for thinking impure thoughts about a minister? Isn’t lust one of the seven deadly sins?

Oh, this was not good. Not good at all.

****

It’s not good for a woman to look so amazing in a pair of denim shorts, Seth Graham thought. Not good at all.

How was it possible? Fifteen years and she still made him feel like… well… like he was fifteen. He’d grown up, answered the call to the ministry, and married and buried a wife. Yet somehow prickly, bitter, keep-your-distance Julia Richardson still scared the life out of him. Because prickly, bitter, keep-your-distance Julia Richardson was also still the sexiest female he’d ever met. A sexy woman who was now his stepmother’s ex-stepdaughter, making her his… well… he didn’t quite know what it made her. He only knew it was bizarre and twisted.

His mouth went dry like he’d swallowed a box of chalk sticks, and he could swear drums were pounding somewhere. As he walked toward her, he concentrated on not tripping over his feet or otherwise reminding her he used to be a huge putz. Their eyes locked. The drumbeat intensified. He knew the moment she figured out who he was because her eyes suddenly widened, and she drew in a shocked breath.

Yeah, Julia, the putz you remember did grow into this.

Buy Links:

 

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Marry-Me-Kristin-Wallace-ebook/dp/B00G4UN1UQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1382632992&sr=8-1&keywords=marry+me+kristin+wallace

 

Barnes & Noble:

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/marry-me-kristin-wallace/1117237787?ean=2940148391678

 

Astraea Press:

http://astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/category=662245&id=29172320

 

About Kristin Wallace

KristinWallace_Headshot

 

Growing up Kristin devoured books like bags of Dove Dark Chocolate. Her first Golden Book led to Laura Ingalls Wilder, Nancy Drew, Encyclopedia Brown, C.S. Lewis and the Sweet Valley High series. Later, she discovered romance novels and fell in love all over again. It’s no surprise then that Kristin would one day try her hand at writing them. She writes inspirational romance and women’s fiction filled with love, laughter and a leap of faith. When she’s not writing her next novel, Kristin works as an advertising copywriter for clients that have included the Miami Marlins, Discovery Networks, The Peabody Hotel, Radisson Seven Seas Cruises and Sea World. She also enjoys singing in her church choir and worship team and playing flute in a community orchestra. Kristin is a member of Florida Romance Writers where she has served as chapter president.

Connect with Kristin:

Website: http://KristinWallaceAuthor.com

Facebook  – http://facebook.com/KristinWallaceAuthor

Twitter – http://twitter.com/KWallaceAuthor

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Kristin-Wallace/e/B00G5KX80I

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7361414.Kristin_Wallace

Thanks for stopping by Kristen and sharing your story with us!

Posted in Health

Dealing with an Office Bully

Hello everyone, I hope all is well with you! I’m back today after an incredibly busy week of writing, school conferences, and a birthday party that my boys were invited to. It seemed like we had something to do every night last week.

I was glad to go to the boys’ conferences though, because I received glowing reports from their teachers. That always does my heart good to hear that my parenting is having a positive effect.

But, I digress. 🙂 Sorry. I tend to do that when I think about my kids. Anyway, as I was thinking about a post for this week, I remembered that I did a post about bullying a couple of weeks ago. It got me thinking, what do you do when you’re bullied in the workplace?

I’m sure everyone has encountered the bully who tries to intimidate by raising his/her voice and using a condescending attitude. They’re hard to deal with and if you can, I would recommend that you avoid them at all costs. But what happens when you can’t? What happens when the bully is someone you have to work with every day?

Then you have to take control of the situation. The first thing you need to do is confront the bully and tell them his/her behavior is unacceptable. You can do this in a diplomatic way or not. It’s up to you. 😉

You also need to start documenting the abusive behavior. You need dates and details about the incidents. Keep a log; because if the problem reaches the level where you have to take legal action, your lawyer will want the information.

If the behavior doesn’t stop, then you have to take it to the next level and discuss it with your supervisor. It’s imperative that you take this step. He/she will appreciate the opportunity to nip the problem in the bud.

If that doesn’t work, you need to file a complaint with senior management. If human resources doesn’t solve the problem, the next step is legal action. You’ll need to consult an attorney. Your best bet is to find someone who specializes in employment law.

I hope this post helps anyone who’s dealing with a bully at work.

***I want to say a special thank you to this site for some of the information in this post. http://www.rd.com/advice/work-career/5-ways-to-deal-with-an-office-bully/

Cover Reveal for PT McHugh!

Hello everyone! Thanks for stopping by, I hope all is well with you! I’ve got a cover reveal for PT McHugh! Check it out! This sounds like an awesome story!

BROKENSTONES_final (2)

Reis Slayton is a man without a home, family, or direction until the US military comes along. But the moment he joins, his ‘talents’ come to the attention of those higher than him – he has a sharp eye, and a willingness to shoot first and ask questions later. His deadly skills are finely tuned … and used.

But this isn’t what Reis wanted to be. Years later, after too many undercover operations, and countless lives taken, he finds himself questioning his direction. Does he believe in the government? Does he agree with his assignments? Or is he wasting his life – and conscience – on someone else’s goal?

With that thought in mind, Reis takes a leap and interviews for a new company, where he’s given the role of body guard. Against his better judgment, he takes a job that no one else wants – guarding the daughter of a wealthy family – and grudgingly moves into a new life. Soon after taking a job, he realizes that he might have found the one thing he’s never had: a family, and someone to fight for. He grows to love his new charge, and begins to feel fulfilled for the first time in his life.

But no matter how hard people try, they cannot escape the sins of their past. Will Reis be able to leave the life of an assassin behind him, and protect his new charge? Or will his history come back to haunt him, in the worst ways imaginable?