Allan McKinney here. You know–the hero in Kathy’s latest release BOUND BY A CHILD. :)
I’m in desperate need of some help. Seriously, it’s Valentine’s Day on Friday and I need a gift that will knock Jessi’s socks off. I think you should know that she finds big romantic gestures too grand and always says I’m showing off if I offer to fly her to Paris.
I know I need more than red roses and expensive chocolates. I got some help last week on Twitter and have booked us a nice spa weekend. But I still need a gift.
What’s the best Valentine’s Day gift/surprise you ever received? What’s the worst so I know what to avoid?
Kathy will be giving away an electronic copy of Bound By A Child to three randomly chosen blog participants today. Please, help me. Jessi will never let me live it down if I screw up our first Valentine’s Day together.
…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
½ tbsp. granulated sugar
3 tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 ½ ounces Coyote Gold margarita mix
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
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
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.
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.
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
1 and a half parts vodka
1 part St-Germaine
1 half part lemon juice
Combine, shake gently, add a splash of vanilla seltzer water. Supremely delicious!
Katherine Garbera’s Sorbet and Champagne Cocktail
1 tsp. sorbet (perhaps raspberry or passion fruit)
Chilled champagne or Prosecco
Scoop sorbet into a champagne flute. Fill with chilled Champagne or Prosecco; stir.
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
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.
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!
My latest series from Harlequin Desire features a rivalry/feud, which is a nice basis for a series of books. The set-up lends itself to lots of natural conflict but also a lot of fun situations for writing. I was inspired to write the series after one of our many trips to Stratford-Upon-Avon.
What made the stories so much fun was the fact that we are human and nothing makes me want to do something more than being told I can’t. So if I were a Chandler girl and I was told by my grandfather that all the Montrose boys were off limits, I’d be the type of person who’d spend hours pursuing them.
I have always been contrary in that way and I have to be honest and admit it’s gotten worse over the years. As soon as I hear you can’t do that or that’s impossible something inside of me perks up and accepts the challenge.
The thing is and this is what I sort of used for Cari in HIS INSTANT HEIR is that I’m not a rebel. I’m a good girl and I like following the rules. So every once in a while I bite off more than I can chew by dealing with these two differing impulses inside of myself.
What about you, are you the type of person who likes to follow the rules? Or as soon as you hear someone say it can’t be done, do you go ahead and do it just because. :)
I have a couple of copies of His Instant Heir to give-away today on e-book just leave a comment to be
entered to win.
My first memories of Dr. Who are seeing some episodes on PBS on a weekend afternoon. It involved a guy dressed really funny (to me) who spoke in an accent I had a bit of trouble understanding and when my mom said to turn the TV off and go outside I wasn’t that bothered.
Fast forward a few years and I’m watching BBC America and this show comes on with Chris Eccelston and a companion called Rose. She’s clearly in love with him and he’s a hard man–who has lost everything and lives by his own code. I am instantly hooked. He’s the kind of hero I love and I like the romance between him and Rose. And I watch like three episodes when all of a sudden he’s dying…what?!
He regenerates, which is totally cool and really builds that romantic conflict for Rose because the man she loves now has a different face, a different personality and though he remembers her he’s not in love with her yet. I was a little reluctant to accept David Tennant as the Doctor but he won me over and that love story continued to grow until Rose was the one who left. There were new adventures and new companions and I enjoyed them all watching the tortured hero until once again he regenerated into a new face and a new person I was sure I wouldn’t like but eventually did. Now he’s regenerating again and there will be another new Doctor who I’m not sure I’ll like…but I see the pattern and know I will eventually love him.
It’s been 50 years since the Doctor first made his appearance and he’s changed and grown over that time. Have you been a long time Dr Who fan? Who’s your favorite Doctor?
When I was growing up (I shouldn’t admit to this) but we had two TVs in our house a big color TV in the living room and a little black and white TV in our kitchen that had to be “warmed up” before the picture could be seen clearly. My mom was really strict about how much TV we could watch and what type of stuff we watched. We didn’t see many cartoons and my parents made all of the TV choices in our house.
After school my mom would allow one 30 minute show on the little black and white TV and usually it was The Brady Bunch. Then the TV was off and it was homework or playing outside time. My mom was also a huge fan of sending us outside to play, which I’m grateful for because she forced my sisters and I to make stuff up. I think that’s why I like writing and telling stories.
Then after dinner we’d all grab our pillows and my sisters and I would lay on the floor in front of the TV in age order. I’m still not sure why we did that but we’d line up oldest to youngest and dad would turn on the big color TV and we’d watch our show for the night.
I grew up with Family Ties and Growing Pains and The Cosby show. So I’m really looking forward to catching The Michael J. Fox Show and The Crazy Ones.
We also watched the A-Team, which we loved. My sisters and I sometimes played that we were the S-Team in our backyard. Our last name was Smith… This season I’m looking forward to a couple of action packed shows Sleepy Hollow (It’s not in the UK yet!) and The Blacklist. I have had a major crush on James Spader, well since I was watching TV at my parents’ home on the living room floor.
Because I love fairytales and am addicted to Once Upon A Time I’m also really excited about it’s return and the spin-off Once Upon A Time: Wonderland. There is a show staring in the UK called Atlantis that also looks really good.
Okay, I seem to have a full calendar of TV watching ahead of me. What are you looking forward to?