What were you doing eleven years ago? I know what I was doing. I was part of a group of authors planning a new blog called the Sisterhood of the Jaunty Quills.

thejauntyquills

The Original Jaunty Quills: Anne Mallory, Shana Galen, Robyn DeHart, Cindy Kirk, Margo Maguire, Shirley Karr

 

Blogs were the new thing eleven years ago. This was before Facebook and Twitter and social media. The idea of readers being able to interact directly with authors was new and exciting. It was exciting to me, a fledgling author who fangirled plenty over my favorite authors.

Over the past eleven years I’ve written hundreds of blogs for the Jaunty Quills. I’ve read thousands of blogs posted by my fellow Quills and our guests. Some days writing my post was a chore. Some days it was cathartic. Some days it was pure fun.

jq-breakfast

The 2014 Jaunty Quills: Jesse Hayworth, Mia Marlowe/Lexi Eddings, Cindy Kirk, Nancy Robards Thompson, Kristan Higgins, Shana Galen, Katherine Garbera

 

But the best part of every blog I ever wrote was reading the comments you, the readers, made in response. I can honestly say I read and responded to almost every single one. There might have been a few days when I had a newborn, was recovering from a natural disaster, or was traveling when I might have missed a comment or two. But I think those missed comments are very few.

shana-with-some-of-the-2015-jaunty-quills

Jaunty Quills 2015: Shana Galen, Vanessa Kelly, Katherine Garbera, Mia Marlowe/Lexi Eddings

 

Eleven years ago when Cindy Kirk, Margo Maguire, Robyn DeHart, Anne Mallory, Shirley Karr, Kimberly Logan, and I started the Jaunty Quills, we didn’t have any idea the blog would still be around a decade later. We didn’t have any idea that we’d become good friends. I still chat daily with former members Robyn, Anne, and Margo. I expect to keep in touch with the current Jaunties.

I hope to keep in touch with you, too, readers. Please find me on Facebook or sign up for my newsletter. You can find out all about my new adventures with my daughter Princess Galen, Sparky the dog, and the long-suffering Ultimate Sportsfan (my husband).

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Sparky

 

We’ve still got about a month left, and to celebrate we’re bring back some of the original Jaunties. Stop by November 4 to read a guest post by original Jaunty Margo Maguire and November 9 to read founding member Robyn DeHart’s post.

This isn’t goodbye. It’s so long for now.


…and the Jaunty Quills are celebrating! Today we’ve compiled our favorite drink recipes for your pleasure. If you’re looking for a cocktail to mix up tomorrow night, try one of these.

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Kathleen O’Brien’s Apple Cider Mimosa
 
Dip rim of glass in water, then into decoration of your choice–cinnamon sugar is my favorite, but red-green rimming sugar, or even gold sprinkles look great, too.
 
Fill 2/3 full with apple cider–you can use apple juice if you like a clearer, brighter drink.
 
Top off with champagne.
 
For fun, end with a curly bit of apple peel or apple slice propped on the rim.
 
Katherine Garbera’s Beer Margarita

 

Ingredients:

* 2 chilled, 12 oz bottles of beer

* 12 oz frozen limeade concentrate (slightly thawed)

* 12 oz tequila

* lime wedges

* Salt to rim glasses

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a large pitcher.  Mix until the limeade concentrate is dissolved.  Pour into glasses rimmed with salt. Enjoy immediately.

Theresa Romain’s Hot Toddy for cold winter evenings
 
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 oz. bourbon (make it 2 if you’ve been shoveling snow and are extra-cold!)
6 oz. boiling water
4-8 dried cherries, depending on preference
 
Put dried cherries, sugar, and bourbon into a mug. Add the boiling water, then stir until sugar is dissolved. Sip and get warm and cozy, then enjoy the soft boozy cherries at the bottom of the mug.
 

 Cindy Kirk’s Crazy Coyote Margarita

cocktails-386776_640

Ingredients:

½ tbsp. granulated sugar

3 tbsp. fresh lime juice

1 ½ ounces Coyote Gold margarita mix

Instructions:

1. Use a cocktail shaker to mix together 1/2 tsp. of granulated sugar, 3 tbsp. of fresh lime juice, 1 1/2 ounces of Coyote Gold margarita mix, and a handful of ice. Shake vigorously for 20 to 30 seconds.

2. Rub a slice of lime along the rim of a margarita glass. Turn the glass upside down and coat the rim with salt from a plate.

3. Pour the margarita mixture through a strainer into the salt-rimmed margarita glass. Add a lime wedge to the rim.

 Vanessa Kelly’s Kir Royale

One of my favorite Christmas drinks is a Kir Royale, which is basically a champagne cocktail. The Kir Royale is a dash of creme de cassis topped off with champagne!

 Nancy Robards Thompson’s Classic Manhattan

Ingredients:

2 ounces bourbon (or if you want a slightly sweeter drink, use one ounce of traditional bourbon and one ounce of honey bourbon)

1/2 ounce sweet vermouth

2-3 dashes Angostura bitters

Instructions:

Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a martini glass.

Garnish with a maraschino cherry. 

Kristan Higgins’s St. Germaine Martini

martini-glass-623438_640

Ingredients:

1 parts vodka

1 part St-Germaine

1 part lemon juice

Instructions:

Combine, shake gently, add a splash of vanilla seltzer water. Supremely delicious!

Mia Marlowe’s Hot Wassail (for the kids too!)

This is a seriously easy recipe that makes the house smell like Christmas. Here’s what you need:

1 QT Apple Juice

1 QT Cranberry Juice

1 Orange

Cinnamon Sticks

Whole Cloves

 Instructions:

Pour the juice into a 5 quart pot and heat on low setting. Stick the orange with cloves. (This is a great project for kids. They love poking the cloves into the orange in fun patterns!) You can leave the orange whole or cut it into quarters. Float the cloved orange and the cinnamon sticks in the juice. Let it simmer till you’re ready to serve!

If you prefer the vino…

Jesse Hayworth with our wine selection.

cork-738603_640

I’m more of a wine girl, and love to celebrate with a Benefit Wine [http://www.benefitwines.com/beechbrook_s/480.htm]. 

They taste good—though I’ve been known to enjoy Cardboardeaux (aka boxed wine), so take that for what it’s worth—have cool labels, and ~30% of the sale price goes to the charity you select.

 Shana Galen

I usually celebrate by toasting with my daughter and a glass of sparkling grape juice.

However you choose to celebrate, we hope it’s a wonderful beginning to 2016!

 


Jesse Hayworth
Jesse Hayworth

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FallHowdy! Jesse here–I know the picture on the side doesn’t *look* like Cindy Kirk, but this is her blog! I’m posting it because, well, Mercury is in retrograde, and Cindy had some technical issues. She’ll be checking in to comment, though!

Without further ado, here’s Cindy Kirk!

***

Autumn is my favorite season.  I love the cool nights, the days when a jacket or hoodie keeps me warm and seeing the brilliant colors worn by the trees and bushes.

As the season progresses, I love the sound of leaves and acorns crunching beneath my feet, the bite in the air and being able to sleep under a down comforter.  I love pumpkin spice lattes and hot apple cider.  And, is there really anything like stuffing and turkey and pumpkin pie with real whipped cream?

The only problem with autumn is that it’s followed by winter.  Sometimes, if I’m not careful, I find myself focusing on what’s to come rather than enjoying the here and now.  I think about the upcoming days when I’ll need to put on all sorts of cold weather gear (hat, scarf, coat, gloves and boots) simply to go outside.  I shiver as I envision icy roads and blowing snow and below zero temperatures.  I remember two years ago when we had snow on May 1. Ugh!

Not much different really than when I worked a day job.  Then I found myself dreading Sunday nights, because it meant the start of another work week (even though I actually loved my job).

Baby on His Doorstep-LR cover

I was just wondering if you, like me, find yourself wishing your life away–wishing it was Friday, wishing it was summer, wishing it was a holiday weekend or a different season.

Share your thoughts on this topic and THREE of you will win a copy of Baby on His Doorstep, on sale now for only .99 on Kindle.

Check back tomorrow to see if you’re a winner!     

 


Several of the Jaunty Quills were in San Antonio last week for the Romance Writers of America conference. We thought you’d like to see some photos from the conference (at the bottom of the page, there’s a legend telling about each photo).

Cindy and Nancy at the HQ party Cindy and Nora HQ party

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Jaunty Quills breakfast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kristan and her Rita awards date

Nancy at the HQ authors signing

Kristan at the HQ signing

Nancy and Kathy before their workshop Nancy and Kathy with Jane Porter Nancy and Kristan with RaeAnne Thayne photo (2) photo (3) photo (4) Robyn at the literacy signing Shana  going to the Source books dinner Shana and Mia looking fancy at the Rita awards Shana at the literacy autographing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nancy at the RWA literacy signing

 

 

 

 

unnamedKristan, Gail Kirkpatrick Chianese, Virginia Kantra  and Jesse

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1. Cindy and Nancy with former Jaunty Emily McKay at the Harlequin Party.

2. Cindy and Nora Roberts.

3.  The gorgeous decorations at the Harlequin party.

4. Friday was Cindy’s birthday.  Harlequin threw a big party just for her. Shhh! Don’t tell her they the party was for everyone. 😉

5.  The annual Jaunty Quills breakfast.

6. Kristan and Alexander Rodriguez.

7.  Nancy at the Harlequin authors book signing (signing Cindy’s birthday card).

8.  Kristan at the Harlequin authors book signing.

 9. Nancy and Kathy before the workshop they presented.

10.  Nancy, Jane Porter, and Kathy at the Harlequin party.

11.  Raeanne Thayne, Nancy, and Kristan.

12. Cindy, Nancy, Kathy and Harlequin editor Susan Litman at the Harlequin party.

13. Harlequin editor Patience Bloom and Cindy at the Harlequin party.

14. Nancy and Kathy.

15.  Robyn at the RWA Literacy signing.

16.  Shana looking beautiful before her publisher’s party.

17. Shana and Mia before the Golden Heart and Rita awards.

18.  Shana at the RWA Literacy signing.

19. Nancy at the RWA Literacy book signing.

20.  Nancy, Kathy, and Mary Louise Wells realize former Jaunty Terri Brisbin was on their flight home.

21. Kristan, Gail Kirkpatrick Chianese, Virginia Kantra,  and Jesse.

 


…and the Jaunty Quills are celebrating! Today we’ve compiled our favorite drink recipes for your pleasure. If you’re looking for a cocktail to mix up tonight, try one of these.

Cindy Kirk’s Crazy Coyote Margarita

Ingredients:

½ tbsp. granulated sugar

3 tbsp. fresh lime juice

1 ½ ounces Coyote Gold margarita mix

 crazy_coyote_margarita

Instructions:

1. Use a cocktail shaker to mix together 1/2 tsp. of granulated sugar, 3 tbsp. of fresh lime juice, 1 1/2 ounces of Coyote Gold margarita mix, and a handful of ice. Shake vigorously for 20 to 30 seconds.

2. Rub a slice of lime along the rim of a margarita glass. Turn the glass upside down and coat the rim with salt from a plate.

3. Pour the margarita mixture through a strainer into the salt-rimmed margarita glass. Add a lime wedge to the rim.

Vanessa Kelly’s Kir Royale

One of my favorite Christmas drinks is a Kir Royale, which is basically a champagne cocktail. The Kir Royale is a dash of creme de cassis topped off with champagne!

 Kir Royale 2

Nancy Robards Thompson’s Classic Manhattan

Ingredients:

2 ounces bourbon (or if you want a slightly sweeter drink, use one ounce of traditional bourbon and one ounce of honey bourbon)

1/2 ounce sweet vermouth

2-3 dashes Angostura bitters

Instructions:

Pour all ingredients into a cocktail shaker with ice and strain into a martini glass.

Garnish with a maraschino cherry. 

Kathleen O’Brien’s Max’s Hot Apple Pie Cocktail

This was created by Max Scherff at The Fairmont in San Francisco.

Ingredients:

3/4 ounce(s) Stoli Vanilla Vodka

1 1/2 ounce(s) Butterscotch Schnapps

4 ounce(s) apple cider

1 ounce(s) whipped cream

1 cinnamon stick

Cinnamon powder, for garnish.

TheFairmont-MaxsHotApplePie-recipe-th2

Instructions:

Combine spirits and cider, steaming until warm. Add cinnamon stick to footed mug and pour in liquid. Top with whipped cream and sprinkled cinnamon powder.

Kristan Higgins’s St. Germaine Martini

Ingredients:

1 and a half parts vodka

1 part St-Germaine

1 half part lemon juice

Instructions:

Combine, shake gently, add a splash of vanilla seltzer water. Supremely delicious!

Katherine Garbera’s Sorbet and Champagne Cocktail

mld105045_1209_champagne_hd

Ingredients:

1 tsp. sorbet (perhaps raspberry or passion fruit)

Chilled champagne or Prosecco

Instructions:

Scoop sorbet into a champagne flute. Fill with chilled Champagne or Prosecco; stir.

Robyn DeHart

Robyn’s no whiz behind a bar, but she does love eggnog with a little kick of rum. Good choice, Robyn!

Mia Marlowe’s Hot Wassail (for the kids too!)

This is a seriously easy recipe that makes the house smell like Christmas. Here’s what you need:

1 QT Apple Juice

1 QT Cranberry Juice

1 Orange

Cinnamon Sticks

Whole Cloves

 Wassail with oranges and cloves

Instructions:

Pour the juice into a 5 quart pot and heat on low setting. Stick the orange with cloves. (This is a great project for kids. They love poking the cloves into the orange in fun patterns!) You can leave the orange whole or cut it into quarters. Float the cloved orange and the cinnamon sticks in the juice. Let it simmer till you’re ready to serve!

If you prefer the vino…

Jesse Hayworth with our wine selection.

I’m more of a wine girl, and love to celebrate with a Benefit Wine

BBFER+wines

They taste good—though I’ve been known to enjoy Cardboardeaux (aka boxed wine), so take that for what it’s worth—have cool labels, and ~30% of the sale price goes to the charity you select.

Shana’s Sparkling Cider

I usually celebrate by toasting with my daughter and a glass of sparkling grape juice. However you choose to celebrate, we hope it’s a wonderful beginning to 2014!

 


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