Thursday, June 30, 2016

Murder Messo Forte--by Donn Taylor-Review

                                                  Murder Mezzo Forte
About the book (provided by Litfuse) . . . 
He is a reclusive history professor with musical hallucinations. . . .
She a headstrong professor of religion, a converted Wiccan. Earlier, they solved a campus murder, but now police say they formed two-thirds of an illicit love triangle with a newly-murdered female colleague and they’re probably guilty of her murder. A leak of the alleged scandal to the college administration threatens their jobs.
Their desperate attempt to prove themselves innocent of the triangle and the murder plunges them into a tangle of unsavory corporate relationships among college trustees. And it puts their lives in danger from a mysterious criminal organization that seems to have tentacles everywhere.
Can this ill-matched pair’s stumbling efforts succeed against the entrenched forces of the police, the college’s incompetent administration, and that powerful but unseen criminal organization? If not, they may end up unemployed, in prison, or suffering a fate much worse.
About the Author . . . 
Donn Taylor


Donn Taylor led an Infantry rifle platoon in the Korean War, served with Army aviation in Vietnam, and worked with air reconnaissance in Europe and Asia. Afterwards, he earned a PhD in Renaissance literature and taught literature at two liberal arts colleges. His publications include three suspense novels, one historical novel, and a book of poetry. He lives near Houston, TX, where he writes fiction, poetry, and essays on current topics.
The authors website is here.  

What I thought . . . 
Actually I am still thinking.  Not done reading.  This one has been a slow read for me.  I received a complimentary copy from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review.  And I was assigned a day to post which is today.  To meet that criteria I'm giving you a sneak peak.    
You can find links to go ahead and purchase or other reviews to check out at     Amazon and Barnes and Noble. I did not find this title available at  Christian Book (dot)Com. I did find other titles from the author that actually interested me more.  (click on the bold type for a direct link).  
My thanks to Litfuse for the complimentary copy of Murder Mezzo Forte and introducing me to this fine author. 

Desserts For The 4th

Whether your planning an outdoor party or picnic or something 
indoors I've got a few ideas to share. 

Let's get started! 
Here’s a cute idea for the 4th of July…make flag oreo cookies! They would be so cute laid out on a platter. They are so easy to make too!…:
Starting with the super simple.  No need really even for a recipe. 
But check out Michelle's blog her photo tutorial is great.  A fun place to visit. 
These adorable cookies have the flavor of a red hot candy, taste amazing and are make with a cake mix! The perfect cookie for the 4th of July!:
Jodie at Mum's the Word came up with the recipe for these
fun and festive cookies.  Using red hot oil and a cake mix.
Read her post she shares her experience developing this recipe.
This 4th of July make your party sparkle radical red, white and b'dazzled blue with these patriotic DIY decorations!:    Celebrate 4th of July in style with this easy DIY dessert project from Inspired Gathering! This crafty snack does double duty as d├ęcor. You can use them to decorate dinner plates or stack them for guests to grab throughout your patriotic party.:

Cherry Cola Slab Pie Recipe The perfect easy summer dessert!:
Cherry Cola Slab Pie . . . 
Doesn't it sound and look just yummy.  Heather at Sugar Dish Me
suggests Sweet Cream Apple Butter Ice Cream as a topping. 

A no-bake berry trifle recipe that takes just 30 min! Loaded with blueberries, strawberries, layers of soft angel food cake and fluffy cream. Delicious! |
I can't believe I've never made one of these.  I need one of those gorgeous bowls!  Do you have one?  There's still time to search one out to make this super simple and pretty dessert.  

Do you have Brownie lovers among your party guests?
Red White and Blue Brownie Pizza - the perfect dessert for your 4th of July celebration. A delicious brownie crust topped with a cream cheese frosting and loaded with berries!:

Here's one more idea.  Super fun not so simple but worth the effort I think . . . 
                                 4 Th Of July Firework Mini Cakes #Food #Drink #Trusper #Tip:
                              I know our silly boy will love these!

Thanks for stopping in. I hope you've seen some fun new ideas to make your 4th fun, festive and memorable!  

I'd would love for you to comment but Blogger has removed that option some how.  I've tried to fix it and I'm still working on it. 
I think you can click on Google+ and you can leave a comment there.  

Or send me an email.  I'd love to hear from you. 

Joining a new linky part at Clebrate Your Story and linking at a few regular parties.  Check my list on my parties page.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Edition-Count Down To The 4th

Welcome to Count Down To 4th 
Today I planned some decorating ideas but before we get started 
I wanted to share this . . . 
Having company over this summer? Make sure your backyard is party-ready! To transform your outdoor space into an awesome bash, follow these steps. Create a well stocked bar of soft drinks, champagne, water, and perhaps a signature specialty cocktail. If you’ve got a pool, get a fun pool float such as a swan or flamingo. Use reusable plastic drinkware and dinnerware in fun patterns. Set up a water-resistant speaker and turn up the music. Visit eBay for 8 ways to make your outdoor bash great.:  There are some cool tips here

Next on with some great decorating ideas . . . 
13319966_1012775512093642_4968987591207420533_n.jpg 564×564 pixels:                        Got a worn chair.  Grab some paint and make it Patriotic!  (there was no link on this PinI'd love one!
Mason Jar 4th of July Silverware Holders - Crafty Morning:
Got any jars laying around.  I have some from Pasta sauce.  I use them for left overs.  What a cute and simple idea for the 4th!

Time is  'a tickin' maybe we don't have time to paint.  How about this cool idea . . . 
 Click here to visit Debbie at Confessions of a Plate Addict she has some great ideas.  
Memorial Day Beverage Station
Here's a little of my decorating the rice paper lanterns are from 
Dollar Tree.  They are like 3 years old.  I use inside.  They have battery twinkle lights.  This year I added the flags and the flag wands from Big Lots.  Makes a nice little display I think.
I took this photo after our Memorial Day dinner.  Missing a few glasses.  I guess I should have tidied up. HeHe.

USA | Petunias, red white and blue. So traditional - easy to take care. Very pretty !!! . . . . ♥ it.:
Gorgeous and super simple if you can still find Petunia's at your garden center!

Quick and Easy Fourth of July Decorating • Tutorials and ideas, including this patriotic paper chain by DIY Network!:                                                                                  Source
Why didn't I think of this?  I am so going to do this.  My grandson will be over on Thursday.  We can deck the balcony rail and make it Patriotic and Festive and Frugal!
homemade globes for outdoor string lights... easy addition to patio celebration using any color combination,,,:
          Oh my goodness.  Another project for Thursday!
Make This Instagram-Worthy Photo Booth Backdrop for Your 4th of July Party via Brit + Co.:
How about a super simple idea for a photo booth.  These are made with ribbons and fabric but I've seen them done with the Dollar Tree plastic table clothes.  Super cool idea.  Be sure and visit the source for the 'How To'.
Summer is here and pool noodle is everywhere. But pool noodle has many uses not just in the swimming pool. First of all, you can do so many things with a pool noodle for home projects. For example, you can make some small exquisite pendants with the colorful pool noodles to decorate your home. Besides […]:
Save those pool noodles. There are some great ideas on this site!

Are you inspired?  I'd love to see your ideas!  Leave me a comment let me know which idea you want to try!  

Come back tomorrow for Dessert!  And a surprise!  See you then!

                                      Check my Parties page for where I linked!

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Let's Have A Party--Appitizers for the 4th

Welcome to day 2 of our Count Down To The 4th.

Let's serve a few appitizers for our party. Let's start with super simple . . . 
Pepperoni and cheese with blue tortilla chips, 4th of July! 4th of July apps. 4th of July appetizer:
What a great idea.  Super simple!  Who doesn't like cheese?

 How about a little pantry salsa to go with those Blue Corn Chips.
Pantry Salsa is our families favorite salsa. It reminds me of the salsa at my favorite Mexican restaurant but it can be made at home with pantry staples in just minutes! - Crazy4Smiths:
I made this salsa recipe a few weeks ago.  It was really good. It makes alot so I cut the recipe in half.  I just dumped all the ingredients in the blender and chopped away.  We really enjoyed it.
14 Festive Fourth of July Appetizers - "Kick off your Fourth of July party with these summery light appetizer bites, dips, and finger foods." : rd  #4thofJuly:
Another super simple idea.  Great for those frozen meatballs.  Grab some puff pastry and a star cookie cutter and you have a fancy looking yummy treat!
                                                    Parmesan & Basil Stars - Great appetizer or snack recipe for 4th of July celebrations!:
A little more work.  These can be whipped up in 20 minutes.  
Patriotic Deviled Eggs – This appetizer is sure to be a hit at your 4th of July party. Click here for the easy recipe!:
Who doesn't like a deviled egg?  Especially a blue or red one?
4th of July recipes: Patrick Henry Pigs in a Blanket:
Super simple.  Grab a couple of boxes of these from your groceries freezer section.  Run out to Hobby Lobby for a package of flags. And your ready for a great party!  Fast and simple.  
If you have time you can buy crescent rolls and little smookies 
and make your own!  
American Flag Vegetable Tray & Dill Dip Recipe. 4th of July Party Ideas.
Simple and yummy.  And healthy.  Grab the kids to help you.  They'll love lining up the veggies into a Flag.  

7 Layer Mexican Flag Dip for 4th of July from

There are some really great ideas on Pinterest.  Just search July 4th.

Join me tomorrow for a few ideas for ideas for fast and simple decorations.  

Linking with:   The Art of Homemaking, Create With Joy, Share The Joy  Show and Share,
 No Place Like HomeTuesday's At Our HomeInspire Me TuesdayLove It Tuesday @ Kathe With an ETuesday With a TwistShare Your Cup, and Katherine's Corner

Author/Book Spotlight

Product Details

A collection of emotionally driven poetry that covers the story of pain, tribulations, happiness, self-esteem and self discovery through love and heartache. The Interlude will take readers on a journey of determination and imagery, which leads to the formation of
short stories and performance poetry.

Buy Interlude to Sentimental Me 
(click on bold type for direct links)

Book Description for Sentimental Me! Volume 1:

Sentimental Me – displays his ability to wrest good from bad, to display the courage to dig deep within himself to help others. Through an inspired melding of his unique voice and inspiring photographic images of nature, Michael provides the reader with a unique perspective of the human condition, inspiring others to follow their own creative paths without boundaries.

Buy Sentimental Me: Amazon (click for direct link)

Author's Bio:

Michael Barry Judkins was born in the Bronx, New York, along with his four brothers and sisters. Michael’s childhood memories, although bittersweet, provided a rich foundation for him to draw upon later in life as an accomplished author.

Delightful memories of trips to the zoo or picking apples with his mother contrast greatly to daily reminders of what any hard-working family must battle in building a life in an urban setting. Domestic violence. Drugs. Gangs. All play their part in shaping a person – whether for good or bad is often an individual’s choice.

After spending years immersed in typical, reactive adolescent behaviors like skipping school, smoking and drinking, Michael began experimenting with other alternatives to developing new relationships and helping resolve social issues. As he took these first, proactive steps to be part of the solution, and not the problem, the germ of the idea for his first book – Sentimental Me – was born.

Graduating from high school a year early, and after a foray into the music business, Michael completed a BS degree in Human Services and MS in Mental Health Counseling. A daydreamer for as long as he can remember, Michael’s inability to forge a relationship with his beloved father before he passed when Michael was only two years old still haunts him today. His mother’s cherished memories of his father’s spirit and honored Armed Forces service, while providing some solace, also serve to make Michael wonder what might have been, if only…
Today, with several poetry collections and short stories in the works, Michael’s first release – Sentimental Me – displays his ability to wrest good from bad, to display the courage to dig deep within himself to help others. Through an inspired melding of his unique voice and inspiring photographic images of nature, Michael provides the reader with a unique perspective of the human condition, inspiring others to follow their own creative paths without boundaries.

Michael now resides in Allentown, P.A., and welcomes all readers to feel free to contact him at to discuss your reaction to his work, or learn more about upcoming releases.

Connect with the author:  Good Reads ~  Facebook

Visit   to enter for a chance to win a print copy of Interlude to Sentimental Me or a $15 Amazon gift card (Open to USA only) Ends July 16

Monday, June 27, 2016

2nd Annual Count Down To The 4th

                                      polka dot border
Hello welcome to the 2nd Annual Count Down to the 4th. 

A week long event here sharing fun, festive  Patriotic ideas for decorating your home. 

If your like me shopping for clothes these days can be a chore.  So let's start our week by getting some ideas for 
what to wear for the holiday.

         Outfit to wear on a boat. Or July 4!:         My personal favorite from the Spring Collection: the Liberty Dress. 4th of July Dress, Independence Day Dress, Patriotic Dress. Modest Dress.:  
In case your not planning a picnic.  Some of us don't when the temps are reaching the upper 90's we tend to stay inside where it's cool!  
         A few fun looks for maybe an afternoon or evening out.  
                    Source Casual dressing for the 4th of July | Fabulous After 40:
Loved this Pin.  What a great collection.  You can visit the blog 
here.  Love the royal blue top.  This one would be great for any size it's long enough to cover what most of us need to hide!  

Great cool look perfect for a picnic, boat outing or a casual dinner.

Not sure what to wear on the 4th of July??hellip:
Source This site had some great tips on buying shorts!  

Mommy and Me 4th of July Chevron Maxi Dress:
Too cute.  Love this.  Available here
#modern and #modest Virtuous, a film based on #Proverbs31 visit us on facebook at

Hey, I found this really awesome Etsy listing at Available on Etsy.  Click here

top-16-patriotic-casual-woman-outfits-for-july-4th-famous-spring-holiday-fashion (13):

traveltheworldinoneday: Love this so much.:

Independence Day InspirationFive Ways To Wear ChambrayWelcome to C Fam Sisters!:
Patriotic Red White Navy Top, chevron maxi, modest shirt, mint shirt, trendy modest clothing, modest clothing, modest dress, modest dresses, dresses for church, trendy modest clothing, boutique clothes, affordable boutique clothes, summer fashionJ.Crew women’s Rory pant. Our newest cropped, wide-leg silhouette that’s, wait for it...machine washable.:
                                  Source                                                                                 Source

Do you have a little one.  Here are a few ideas . . . 
Halter Patriotic 4th of July Girl Dress by AllissonsCreations {no longer available}      Americana Dress.. the link for making this dress is a halloween dress, but instructions for how to make it are there.  You can adapt it to whatever design you want.:  Quick and simple to make
               Source                                                            Source

I hope you've gotten some good ideas.   Join me tomorrow to start planning simple menu's for brunch, picnics and cook outs and dinner!

Linking with The Art of Homemaking, Create With Joy,

Happy Homemaker Monday

I haven't joined Sandra in a while and I've missed . . . 
Using last weeks prompts.  I have to write my post on Sunday.

I have found that joining Sandra and making a few plans and making a menu for the week really helps me keep things running 

The weather...has been typical July in Texas hot and humid.  It was windy on Saturday and Sunday so it did help a little.  It's just hot
On my reading pile . . . Currently I'm reading a book by Lauren Carr.  Last week I did a spotlight on her newest book  Candidate For Murder.  I enjoyed it so much I'm reading on Kindle the previous book.  
On my t.v.   We got a 30 day trial of Netflicks so I'll be checking it out this week.  
On the menu this week . . . 

Monday-- Chicken Fried Steak, Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans from my balcony garden.  It's not a 'mess' but enough for a decent serving.  I'll be planting more for Fall.  The meat was marked down.  
Tuesday-- Taco's and Hot Tamale's and Rice. We found an Ortega dinner box with flour and corn taco shells with the mix and salsa package cheap at our crazy Kroger.  The tamales were marked down too.  A thrifty meal tonight. 
Wednesday-- Pasta.  I bought some fresh pasta on sale awhile back.  It's in the freezer not exactly sure what it is Ravioli or  Tortellini.  I'll make Alfredo sauce a salad and garlic bread.  Another thrifty meal.  That's 3 for 3.  Image result for tiny thumbs up smiley face
Thursday--Homemade Pizza Crust on sale.  Cheese was on sale.
Friday-- Hmm.  Not really sure.  I've been wanting to make 
Doritos Taco Salad.  I'll use the leftover Taco meat from Tuesday. 
We'll see what strikes my fancy.  

On my to do list . . . On Saturday I began moving all my sewing things from the master closet.  I gave the closet to the Cowboy. 
He's been using a tiny closet since we've moved here.  I am making it into a nice area for him.  Photo's coming soon. 
My list includes finishing his closet and finding places for all my stuff that was in there.  It's a challenge!  I hope to finish in time to share here . . . 
Where Bloggers Create  Click here to visit My Dessert Cottage

What I am sewing or creating . . . nothing at the moment. 
Focused on creating a new space for my craftiness.

Looking around the house . . . Oh my goodness right now it looks like a bomb went off.  You could film an episode of hoarders here. 
I have two Santa's sitting on the dining room table with me while I'm typing on the lap top. A sewing machine is to my left.  A plastic bin with breakable things I had displayed in my sewing closet.  
Fabric in stacks waiting to be put back into the new space.  It's really crazy!

From the camera . . . 
My Silly boy helped me take apart the glass shelving below the t.v. so I could move it.  All part of the new crafting space change. He 
had the best time using the screwdriver to tighten the clamps for the shelves.  

On My Prayer List . . . I've challenged myself to collect books, c.d.'s anything that I can win to donate to my daughters church for the Single Mom's Christmas event.  I've won two books this month. Please pray that I'm able to find some giveaways and that I win!  
I'll be posting and begin a list for my sidebar this week. 

Something that inspires or brings a smile to my face . . . 
Gardening.  I love my veggie garden.  This is the first time I've tried container veggie growing.  It hasn't been exactly productive but we've gotten a few tomatoes.  
I've already got seeds for Fall found them on sale last weekend.  
I'm inspired to grow as much as I can.   I love fresh and frugal.

  Thanks to Sandra for Happy Homemaker Monday it's nice to be back. 

Linking with Happy Homemaker Monday, The Art of Homemaking, Share Your Cup,
No Place Like Home, Blue Monday, Create With Joy, Make It Pretty Monday and a few more that might inspire.  My list is on my Parties page.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Simple Sunday

                    Word Art & Scripture Passages:

                                          Have A Blessed Day