Who Is Mistral Dawn?

Mistral Dawn is a thirty-something gal who has lived on both coasts of the US but somehow never in the middle. She currently resides in the Southeast US with her kitty cats (please spay or neuter! :-)) where she works as a hospital drudge and attends graduate school. Taken By The Huntsman is her first effort at writing fiction and if it is well received she has ideas for several more novels and short-stories in this series. Please feel free to visit her on FaceBook or drop her a line at mistralkdawn@gmail.com

Monday, December 31, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. I know, I know, it's New Year's Eve and no one wants to think about the 2020 election. I don't blame you, I wish things were easier and we didn't have to fight so hard, too. But, like it or not, the 2020 election campaigns are already underway, and it's important for everyone to know where all the candidates stand on important issues. This video is important because it illustrates why it's so important to get the right Democratic nominee if we want to win in 2020. Neoliberal bullshit like what Biden is spouting here is a sure way to lose, and we as a country can't afford that.




Sunday, December 30, 2018

Delicious Vegetarian Dip #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

With all those New Years parties coming up, I thought I'd share one of my favorite dip recipes. Enjoy! :-)

Ingredients:
3 large eggplants
5 cloves garlic minced fine
1/2 cup chopped basil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup tahini
1/4-1/2 cup olive oil
2 tbsp sriracha (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Put the eggplants on a foil-lined baking sheet and put them under the broiler in your oven. In half an hour, turn them over. After another half an hour, check on them by inserting a toothpick or fork. If they are completely tender with no resistance, take them out. If there is any resistance, turn them over and check on them in fifteen-minute intervals, turning them each time, until they are completely soft. Remove them from the oven and wrap them up in the tin foil, crimping it tightly. Let them rest for about 15-20 minutes.

Remove the eggplants from the foil and cut them open. Use a spoon to scoop out the softened insides and place the mush in a strainer over a bowl. Once all the eggplant insides are in the strainer, use a paper towel to push down firmly on the mush to remove the excess liquid. Once the eggplant is completely drained, transfer it to a food processor and add the rest of the ingredients except the olive oil. Pulse the ingredients together until the eggplant completely breaks down. Drizzle the olive oil into the mixture slowly while the food processor is running until it's creamy and easy to dip or spread. Serve warm or cold with pita wedges or crackers.

Bon appetit!



Saturday, December 29, 2018

#Winter #Wonderland Of #Reading #Christmas #Giveaway! $120 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Christmas!  Please take a moment to check out the Winter Wonderland of Reading Authors & Bloggers Christmas Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 160 prizes, and the grand prize is $120 cash payable through PayPal!! :-)  Now isn't that worth taking a few minutes to check out? ;-)   Here are all the details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  And don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)





Friday, December 28, 2018

Examining Assumptions And Questioning "Givens"...


Hey Everyone!! :-)

If you read my work, at all, you've probably noticed that there are little bits of social analysis sprinkled here and there throughout them. Below I've posted an excerpt from Taken By The Huntsman that's an example of this. I think fiction can be a useful tool for examining some of the assumptions and "givens" we surround ourselves with. It gives us room to step back and look at our world from the perspective of someone who isn't immersed in it. I hope you find the reflections in this passage interesting. :-)

Excerpt from Taken By The Huntsman:
Cassie realized Maeve thought she was threatening to fire her and she instantly felt sorry. She wasn’t used to having authority over other people, and she hadn’t thought how Maeve might interpret her questions. “No Maeve, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean that I thought you should leave, I only wondered if you were being forced to stay here against your will. I don’t have any intention of firing anyone who wants to be here.”

Maeve looked at Cassie a moment longer and then patted her arm. “No harm done, then. The master wouldn’t keep me here if I didn’t want to stay. The Erlking is a good master. He isn’t given to beating his servants in fits of anger, he treats his people fairly, and when someone belongs to the Erlking other Fae do not threaten them. In all the years I’ve served here, I’ve never seen the master dismiss or discipline a person who didn’t deserve it.”

Cassie thought about that. The idea that an employer could beat an employee just because they were angry disturbed her. But, then, didn’t similar things happen in some of the places she had worked? Oh, none of her bosses had ever physically assaulted her, but some of their verbal assaults were nearly as hard to bear. And how many companies thought nothing of exposing their employees to danger and failing to protect, or even warn, them? Many bosses routinely harassed, bullied, browbeat, and otherwise abused their employees. And even though employees could theoretically leave, many people felt trapped because they needed employment to survive.

And, even though she personally had never been physically assaulted by one of her employers, she had certainly heard plenty of stories from her coworkers. Some bosses seemed to feel they had the right to touch their employees however, wherever, and whenever they pleased. And to fire any employee who had the temerity to object. Yes, theoretically there were legal protections in place for such abuses. But many employees, especially those in the lower income strata as she had been, had neither the time nor the resources to pursue such avenues.

The laws always seemed to be structured to protect those with money against those without. And finding the "proof" that the courts wanted wasn’t always possible. What was an employee supposed to do? Tell their boss, "Wait just one moment before you grope me, so I can set up some recording equipment?" And, of course, anyone who dared to complain about, or expose, a dangerous situation would instantly become a target for reprisal. Cassie knew there were laws that ostensibly prevented such retaliation; she also knew there were plenty of ways for employers to get around such laws. No, the Fae's system might not be perfect, but neither was the one she was used to.

She’d just have to wait and see how Cadeyrn handled such matters, and how he treated his people.


I hope you enjoyed that little snippet. If you'd like to read more, you can get your copy of Taken By The Huntsman at the link below. Happy Reading! :-)





Thursday, December 27, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: Under A Hunter's Moon: Shadows Over Seattle: Prequel 1 By Timothy Bateson!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Timothy Bateson in my APC spotlight, today! Timothy is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and his paranormal, urban fantasy short story, Under A Hunter's Moon, looks great! Here's the description:
Richard Parsons is a lupine, one of the many breeds of shape-shifters living in Seattle. Mortal legends of his kind call them werewolves. When a traveling exhibition returns to Seattle, Richard takes a night time visit, with plans that go beyond seeing a particular display. However he is unprepared for the memories and emotions that come flooding back.
"Under A Hunter's Moon" is the first of the "Shadows Over Seattle: Prequel" series, giving readers a chance to meet the characters who will be appearing in the main series. Every story is a snapshot of an event in that character's past, and can be read as a standalone short story, or as part of the series. At 4,200 words in length, "Under A Hunter's Moon" is a quick, easy, read that introduces readers to the "Shadows Over Seattle" setting.
If you think this sounds like something you might enjoy, go ahead and grab your copy here:


Thank you all so much for stopping by! Happy reading! :-)



Wednesday, December 26, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 890


Hey Everyone! :-)

Agent Thoth discusses more of the trials and tribulations associated with living with hominids. Incidentally, if you've missed Agent Thoth's earlier entries, you can find them here: Thoth's Journal


Department for the Preservation and Confirmation of Intelligent Life (DPCIL)
Agent Thoth's Personal Log

Day Eight-Hundred-Ninety:
Yesterday, my hominid-servant presented the juvenile felid, the canid, and myself with several packages. The packages seemed to be important to her, because she made rather a production out of laying them out in front of us and telling us about them. Then, she carefully removed the crinkly wrapping from around them to display their contents, which were interesting. But, quite honestly, not nearly as interesting as the crinkly wrapping or the containers the contents had been delivered in.

The contents were more of the baubles she periodically presents us with, eatables that are enjoyable but common offerings, and the pernicious herb she sometimes uses to alter our behavior. But nothing that required instant attention. The wrapping, on the other paw, made a fascinating sound when pounced on, and would fold and unfurl in ways that were guaranteed to entice every hunting instinct possessed by any self-respecting DPCIL Agent. And the containers, well they were a wealth of captivating scents that told of far-off places filled with exotic consumables. Plus, the mesmerizing aroma of that damnable herb permeated every inch of them, making them nearly irresistible just by itself.


My hominid-servant, naturally, missed all the allure offered by the wrapping and containers, and seemed rather miffed that we did not appreciate her offerings more. She consoled herself by taking one of the socks off of the wall, where she had hung it, and eating the treats she had hidden within. When the canid joined her, she retrieved another of the socks and offered the contents of it to the canid, who seemed to enjoy them. Unfortunately, she did not offer a sock to the juvenile felid or me, so I was unable to properly catalog the contents. Perhaps, she will make such an offering in the coming days, as there are still more sock hung on the wall that have not yet been emptied.


Hominids really are clueless, aren't they? ;-) You may have noticed that Agent Thoth has a new look. I hope you like his new picture as much as I do, but I'd love to hear your thoughts, either way. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. ;-) Happy reading, everyone!




Tuesday, December 25, 2018

#MerryChristmas And #HappyHolidays!!! :-)



Hey Everyone!! :-)

I just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays and to share a very short reflection from Petri. Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from Intrinsic Connections:
It was funny how life turned out sometimes. Living in the underworld had taught her that surviving each day was a victory and looking ahead too far just invited headaches. But, now, she was starting to realize that the future wasn't something to be feared. She wouldn't go so far as to say she was excited about it, but the possibilities were starting to pique her curiosity. One thing she did know for certain, no matter what the galaxy threw at them, she and Chessie would face it together.


Just in case any of you forgot anyone on your Christmas shopping list, I'll post the link below. Ebooks can be gifted and they download in minutes, so no need for anyone to miss out on their Christmas gift. And being engrossed in a new book is also an excellent excuse to escape the in-laws for a little while. ;-)  Enjoy your holiday, everyone!! :-)







Monday, December 24, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. I thought this video was really interesting for several reasons, but the major takeaway I got from it is that we all need to be more active in making our voices heard in DC. So, please take a few minutes to watch the video, and then consider writing or calling your elected representatives and letting them know what's on your mind. I know that's what I'll be doing. ;-)





Sunday, December 23, 2018

Quick And Easy #Holiday #Treat That's #Sweet To #Eat #Recipe! :-)



Hey Everyone!! :-)

I hope you're all having a wonderful and safe holiday season! :-) Whatever your particular holiday celebration is, most of them seem to include lots of rich and delicious special treats. So, I thought I'd bring back one of my favorite special treat recipes to share with you, today. :-)

Ingredients:
2 cups chocolate chips
2 cups heavy cream
2 tsp vanilla (or your favorite liquor)
1 container whipped topping
1 bag Milano Cookies
1 egg
1 round container lined with plastic wrap

Put the chocolate chips, egg, and vanilla in a blender. Heat the cream until bubbles start to form around edges. Pour the hot cream into the blender and blend until smooth. Immediately pour the chocolate mixture into the prepared round container. Put the container in the freezer overnight. Remove the container from the freezer and use the plastic wrap to lift the chocolate mousse from the container. Turn the frozen mousse upside down on a plate. Microwave the milano cookies for 30 seconds to melt the chocolate centers. Separate the halves of the milano cookies and stick the chocolate sides to the frozen mousse until the mousse is completely surrounded by cookies. Fill the top of the mousse in the center of the cookies with the whipped topping, and garnish with chocolate shavings or chocolate chips. Cut between the cookies to serve.

Bon appetit!




Saturday, December 22, 2018

#Winter #Wonderland Of #Reading #Christmas #Giveaway! $120 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Christmas!  Please take a moment to check out the Winter Wonderland of Reading Authors & Bloggers Christmas Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 160 prizes, and the grand prize is $120 cash payable through PayPal!! :-)  Now isn't that worth taking a few minutes to check out? ;-)   Here are all the details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  And don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)





Friday, December 21, 2018

The Spirit Of The Thing


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got a little more of Alyce's adventure to share with you, today! Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from Answers From Alyce:
The exhibit consisted of a large room that had been shrunk to what appeared to be 1/4 scale. The robots within the room had been made to the same scale and there were a lot of them. Hundreds, it looked like, at least. And they were all talking at once and trying to shout over each other. I put my hands over my ears, the noise was doing nothing good for the pounding in my head, and looked at Yax.

The tall alien grimaced apologetically. "This exhibit was so loud we had to put a sound blanket over it to contain the noise so that it wouldn't disrupt the rest of the exhibits," he yelled. "It can be a bit jarring when you first cross the barrier, but hopefully you'll be able to acclimate, soon."

I shook my head and shrugged my shoulder, keeping my hands over my ears. Tears were starting to stream from the corners of my eyes. Yax opened his mouth like he was going to respond, but before he could say anything, Squid-boy waddled up and let out a gurgling honk loud enough to be heard over the racket from the exhibit. He punched at his clipboard a few times, and the noise level dropped to something that didn't feel like it was trying to liquefy my brain.

I blinked the tears from my eyes and stretched my jaw until my ears popped. "What in the name of all that's holy is that?" I gasped.

"From the media sources we've been able to review, that is our best guess as to how your government functions," answered Squid-boy.

It took me a moment to process what he said, I think my brain was still vibrating from that unholy din, then I turned and looked at the exhibit again. Looked at in a certain way, the room portrayed in the exhibit did sort of look like a weird combination of the Senate and House Chambers. And was that a small replica of the White House with an itty bitty President waving his tiny little hands standing on top? Astonished, I turned to stare at my hosts.

"Is it not accurate? Your government seems to be contained in so many different buildings, we had a hard time discerning which were the most important, and which were merely ceremonial in nature. Did we not guess correctly?"

I turned back to the exhibit. "Well… I… Sort of? I guess," I hedged.

Yax stepped forward and said, "It's clear we got something wrong. What is it?"

"Um… Well, not wrong, exactly. Just not…quite…right, either," I was still having a hard time dealing with the shock of seeing how they had somehow turned our government into a Presenaouse. For some reason, the picture of a turducken kept trying to pop up in my head, but the combination of the two images was anything but appetizing. Especially, with those tiny, orange fists still waving around in the air. Shaking my head, I tore my eyes away from the strange tableau and looked at my hosts, instead. "There are some things that could be more accurate," I managed.

"What things?" asked Squid-boy.

"The reason we have so many buildings for our government is because we have different parts of our government. There are three main branches of our federal government: the executive, the legislative, and the judicial. Though, you only seem to have two branches represented here. The legislative branch is divided into two parts, the Senate and the House of Representatives. The White House, where the President lives, is the head of the executive branch of our government. But you've sort of jammed them all together here, so it's a little…odd to me."

"We were trying to simplify and streamline the concept so that museum visitors would be less likely to be confused by the minutia and more able to focus on the overall concept we were trying to convey."




Thursday, December 20, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: Milo The Pug's Birthday Party! By Ashton Cartwright!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Ashton Cartwright in my APC spotlight, today! Ashton is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and his children's, preschool-level, animal care, animal fiction story, Milo The Pug's Birthday Party!, looks great! Here's the description:
It's Milo the Pug's birthday party today, and he's decided to invite his best friend Brutus over!
They're two of the friendliest puppy dogs you'll ever meet, and the shenannigans they get up to for Milo's birthday party are lots of fun!
Milo's Birthday Party is a great dog book for kids. Pug books for children should always be fun and entertaining, and this one certainly is!

If you want pug books, or fun books about dogs for kids, definitely give Milo the Pug's Birthday Party a try! It's a great bedtime story for children and toddlers, and like all short bedtime stories for kids, it has a great message about friendship.
If you think this sounds like something you, or a munchkin in your life, might enjoy, go ahead and grab your copy here:


Thank you all so much for stopping by! Happy reading! :-)



Wednesday, December 19, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 883


Hey Everyone! :-)

Agent Thoth discusses more of the trials and tribulations associated with living with hominids. Incidentally, if you've missed Agent Thoth's earlier entries, you can find them here: Thoth's Journal


Department for the Preservation and Confirmation of Intelligent Life (DPCIL)
Agent Thoth's Personal Log

Day Eight-Hundred-Eighty-Three:
My hominid-servant added a chemical to the liquid H2O she put in the tray surrounding her dead tree, and I have to admit it is now a semi-effective barrier. Not only can we no longer consider the tray a source of potable H2O, but the stench of the chemical makes even the prospect of approaching the tree daunting.

I still believe it would be possible to launch oneself across the abyss from one of the horizontal platforms that are scattered around the room and into the branches of the tree. But the thought of possibly missing one's goal and landing in the vile trench is more than enough to give one pause. For their part, the juvenile felid and the canid seem to agree with me, as they refuse to go anywhere near the foul-smelling tray.

I'm not certain if my hominid-servant's intention in deploying this noxious substance was to ward off attempts to investigate her tree, or if it has some preservative element that will retard the decomposition of the tree. Since the hominid sense of smell is not nearly as evolved as that of more civilized species, it's entirely within the realm of possibility that she does not realize how much the compound she released reeks. But, regardless of her aim, I believe she may have found an effective way of protecting her tree baubles.


Drat! Foiled again! ;-) You may have noticed that Agent Thoth has a new look. I hope you like his new picture as much as I do, but I'd love to hear your thoughts, either way. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. ;-) Happy reading, everyone!




Tuesday, December 18, 2018

#December2018 #IndieBooksBeSeen #Indie #Author #Books #Monthly #BookReview!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

It's the 18th again, so time for my #IndieBooksBeSeen monthly indie author book review!! Enjoy! :-)

Lifesong by Julia Blake:

A woman from another place finds herself trapped here on Earth, a place bereft of the music that unifies all living things, the Lifesong. It's hard enough to deal with losing the world she was familiar with, but dealing with the seemingly blind destructiveness of the world she finds herself in is what's truly distressing. Can she heal the sickness and help others to appreciate the beauty and majesty of the Lifesong?

I couldn't put this novella down. It's exactly the kind of story I gravitate to, sci-fi/fantasy with strong overtones of social consciousness. But the philosophy and ecological warnings are blended so seamlessly into the storyline, and the smooth-as-silk narrative flows so easily through the mind, that the reader hardly realizes they're being educated at the same time they're being entertained. Five stars; I recommend this book to anyone who loves science fiction and fantasy, music, cares about the environment, or who just enjoys beautifully written fiction.




Monday, December 17, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. I thought this was a brilliant bit of satire. It made me laugh, and I thought all of you could use a laugh as well. Enjoy! :-)





Sunday, December 16, 2018

Easy Vegetarian Quesadillas #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is an easy, quick recipe for some delicious vegetarian quesadillas. Enjoy! :-)

Ingredients:
1/4 cup canola or vegetable oil
12 corn tortillas (or flour, I just prefer corn)
1 14oz can refried beans
1 14oz can red kidney beans drained and rinsed
2 cups sharp cheddar or pepper jack cheese shredded
1 large tomato diced small
1/2 cup cilantro chopped small
1 onion chopped very fine or grated
4 cloves garlic minced or grated
1 tbsp cumin
2 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tbsp sriracha (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Put all the ingredients except the tortillas and oil in a bowl and mix until thoroughly combined. Put the oil in a frying pan and heat until sizzling. Put half the tortillas (or as many as there are room for in your pan) into the pan and spoon the mixture from the bowl onto each tortilla in equal portions. Put the other half of the tortillas on top of the mixture and press the tortillas together firmly with a spatula. Cook until the bottom tortillas are browned and then flip over to brown the top tortillas. Remove the quesadillas from the pan and serve piping hot as-is or with salsa and/or sour cream to dip.

Buen provechito!



Saturday, December 15, 2018

#Winter #Wonderland Of #Reading #Christmas #Giveaway! $120 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Christmas!  Please take a moment to check out the Winter Wonderland of Reading Authors & Bloggers Christmas Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 160 prizes, and the grand prize is $120 cash payable through PayPal!! :-)  Now isn't that worth taking a few minutes to check out? ;-)   Here are all the details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  And don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)





Friday, December 14, 2018

#Announcement: The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD By Eleanor Alspaugh!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

My friend Eleanor Alspaugh is here today to tell us all about her new book, The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD. Eleanor, take it away! :-)

Eleanor Alspaugh/The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD:

Author (and photographer) Eleanor Alspaugh has won two book awards for The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD, but she has been shaking things up and broadening her outreach with the hopes that more readers (men love it too!) will check out and enjoy this book! She recently released a new cover to her eBook that captures the essence of the often­­ ­CRaZy life of a Mom! In addition to a new look, the eBook price has also been reduced 25 percent celebrating this new look! Even better, not long ago, this award-winning book, The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD, was added to the many eBooks available free on Kindle Unlimited. The paperback cover will also be updated in the coming months. In the spirit of giving back, Eleanor is also just one of the many talented authors participating in the Winter Wonderland of Reading Author and Blogger 2018 Christmas Giveaway which offers many prizes to readers as well as a grand prize and is free to enter! You can visit her Facebook or web and blog sites listed below for entry information. Eleanor has also partnered with the Whistlestop Bookshop, a supporter of the book located in Carlisle, Pennsylvania where she resides with her husband and family. For a limited time only, with each purchase of The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD from the Whistlestop Bookshop, shoppers will receive a Free #MomLife tote celebrating the fun yet often CrAzY life of a mother! This award-winning book with the fun Tote will make a great gift for Moms, Family & Friends, babysitters, co-workers and others. This offer is also available at their online site located at www.whistlestoppers.com (note: shipping charges will apply). With 5 Star Reviews both professionally and by readers like yourself, you will ‘Enjoy Your Ride’ on The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD!!


Visit or follow Eleanor on this crazy ride at the following:
Website: https://www.photosbyel.com/
Blogsite: https://themgr.blogspot.com/
https://www.facebook.com/TheMommyGoRound
https://twitter.com/elalspaugh
https://www.instagram.com/elalspaugh/
https://www.pinterest.com/photosbyel/



Information about The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD:

The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD -- Winner of the 2016 Pacific Book Award for Best Parenting – Family Book and the 2016 Readers' Favorite Bronze Medal Winner in the Non-Fiction - Parenting category!

The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD is a heartwarming and humorous book which breaks the Motherhood Code of Silence with A Tell ALL series of essays on Motherhood, Childhood and Everything in between. It brings humor and love together while honestly sharing the often UNSPOKEN yet all too true experiences in raising children and the CrAzY balancing act and understanding heart Motherhood requires! It’s guaranteed to make you laugh and shed a few tears! If a mother, you will definitely realize YOU ARE NOT ALONE AND IT IS ALL NORMAL!! Dads have confessed to loving the book’s family interactions too! The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD leaks secrets from the “Motherhood Code of Silence” that even your own Mother won’t share with you! Prepare to read true confessions from the author’s own childhood and relationship with her Mother as well as the author’s "payback" role as a CrAzY hardworking mother of 3! And just in case you weren’t aware --- be warned of the existence of the Dreaded Parental Curse that may come back to haunt YOU too!! Filled with laughs, heartaches, and the joys of parenthood, you’ll be encouraged to embrace the MOM-Life experience completely with all the phases and craziness you’ll experience from infant to teen and even the fun and help of siblings and extended family! And let’s not forget Dad’s role as there’s plenty of humor when he takes charge!! Don't hesitate a moment longer! Grab a Ring on The MoMmY-Go-RoUnD and prepare for the ride of your life!! Five Star ratings & a 97% Serious Reading rating! Interview with Eleanor Alspaugh available at https://www.SeriousReading.com Book or eBook found on Amazon & on Kindle Unlimited, B&N & select bookshops like the Whistlestop Bookshop!



Excerpt from Chapter 18: Christmas in July

Being a parent has truly taught me the meaning of the expression, “Christmas in July.” It is the time of year that some children, especially mine, begin to write their Christmas lists…oh and one other thing…they begin to whine about how far off Christmas actually is!!

I’m fairly certain that when the summer gets a little boring, and a bit too hot, there’s summer reading out there that outlines the rules that children follow when making a COOL Christmas List. The first rule is to make the list I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-Y LONG! In fact, my daughter likes to make it long enough so that she can be truly despondent that she will NEVER EVER TRULY GET WHAT SHE WANTS (this year that is…) In fact, to hear it from them, they never do get what they REALLY want. (Forget the fact that a mere six months ago, they received the majority of another rather endless list of overpriced items, most of which are now cluttering up my living room, bedrooms, and playroom areas.)

Anyway, it was a hot July evening when my daughter decided to “Cool off” by writing this year’s Christmas list. She completed the list then proceeded to begin the sales pitch by gently “walking me” through her winter wonderland wish list. Not being of the Christmas giving spirit myself that Christmas List Eve, I did my best rendition of Scrooge. This response caused the list to be abandoned on my kitchen island with her modifying title, new and in my opinion, improved, as “The Never Christmas List.”

Christmas Confessions…
Now I ask you, where would my child get this rather annoying, yet comical

habit from? There can be only one answer… The Parental Curse… Used only as a last resort, and I’m sure when my own parents reached their breaking point from what else but...MY CHRISTMAS LIST!!!!

Yes, I confess. I did it. Mine was no ordinary Christmas list…My brothers were witness to this. My list was in fact almost the entire Sears Wish book with basically everything under the sun circled as a “MUST HAVE!” In an “honest” effort to save my parents some money, I skipped a few boy items here and there. In retrospect, I should have crossed off the few things I didn’t want rather than waste all that time circling things!!

Anyway, can I help it if my begging, pleading and dare I admit it?? My WHINING was much more “effective” than my brothers trying to kill each other throughout the rest of the year? Looking back, I’m now sure that my whining was the clincher that drove my poor parents to the ultimate punishment I’m still paying for… the dreaded Parental Curse cast upon their beloved daughter during a brief moment of parental insanity!! By the time I was done with poor Mom and Dad, they were probably in a state of (sticker) shock and asking that age-old Jimmy Stewart question spoken in “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Why do we have to have all these kids anyway???”

And so it came to pass. I deserved and became a victim of Parental revenge. A
simple curse that could escalate my children’s innocent act of making a “simple, little Christmas list” into a Whine Fest complete with written documentation… This incredibly powerful Parental Curse designed to punish me for years on end. And me asking the same question my parents most likely asked years before... Whatever became of those “visions of sugarplums” dancing ONLY in the heads of sleeping children!! What is it that then compels the darlings to put the visions down on paper, in list format no less? I think the answer will come out when my children write their rebuttal to this book due out in paperback in the year 2025…








Thursday, December 13, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: In Times Of Violence Young Adult Edition By Karina Kantas!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Karina Kantas in my APC spotlight, today! Karina is an active, supportive, and one of the founding members of the Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her young adult, coming of age, personal journey, contemporary urban fiction novel, In Times of Violence, looks great! Here's the description:
Jade had been sheltered most of her life. Living in an isolated village with only sex and drugs to entertain. Her mother is an alcoholic and her father doesn't give a damn.
Her only way out is to beg her Aunt to allow her to stay as a guest in their London house.
Jade meets fate head on in the form of Marcus, president of the Tyrants MC. She finally finds a family that loves and respects her and they are not BLOOD. Nothing comes easy to Jade and she is forced to fight to keep her title and status. Then just when life starts to go right, one-night changes everything 

If you think this sounds like something you might enjoy, go ahead and grab your copy here:


Thank you all so much for stopping by! Happy reading! :-)



Wednesday, December 12, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 880


Hey Everyone! :-)

Agent Thoth discusses more of the trials and tribulations associated with living with hominids. Incidentally, if you've missed Agent Thoth's earlier entries, you can find them here: Thoth's Journal


Department for the Preservation and Confirmation of Intelligent Life (DPCIL)
Agent Thoth's Personal Log

Day Eight-Hundred-Eighty:
My hominid-servant spent quite a bit of time today playing with her dead tree. First, she replaced the decorations that the juvenile felid destroyed in his effort to evade her retribution for daring to trespass upon her tree. Then, she added to their number quite substantially, to the point where I wasn't certain the weight wouldn't cause some of the smaller branches to break. The dead tree is now a truly dazzling display of blinking, flashing, glittering temptation.

Once my hominid-servant finished adorning the dead tree to her, apparently arbitrary, satisfaction, she then did something that I found truly interesting. She attached the base that the dead tree is set in to keep it upright to a large tray, which she then filled with liquid H2O. I'm uncertain if this new development is meant as an attempt to nourish the dead tree to delay the rate at which it decays, or if it was done in an effort to prevent my young companion's and my own investigations of the dead tree. Or, perhaps, the hope is that it will serve both purposes.

No matter which of those possible motivations my hominid-servant may have had, I fear her efforts will prove to be futile. The tree is dead; there is nothing that can prevent it from succumbing to the inevitability of entropy, now. The time to take action to preserve it would have been before it was severed from its root system. At best, my hominid-servant's actions may slow the rot. But even that much I am dubious of.

And the liquid H2O will certainly not prove to be an effective barrier to exploration. The only thing it will accomplish is to make a careful approach to the branches impossible, as it will now be necessary to leap over the tray. This will likely result in more damage to my hominid-servant's baubles, and of course more outrage from her, but that consideration will certainly not impede necessary research.

Though, I do think the tray will provide an additional convenient source of H2O for the canid, my youthful compatriot, and myself. I doubt such a possibility entered into my hominid-servant's thought process when she undertook to erect the contraption. But, perhaps, she can take some solace in the fact that it will at least serve some useful function.


Hominids can be rather dense, at times, can't they? ;-) You may have noticed that Agent Thoth has a new look. I hope you like his new picture as much as I do, but I'd love to hear your thoughts, either way. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. ;-) Happy reading, everyone!




Tuesday, December 11, 2018

History Repeating Itself...


Hey Everyone,

Today's post is something I wrote back in October, back when a crazed Trump fan mailed a dozen bombs to people Trump had named as his political enemies. Unfortunately, not much has changed in the national rhetoric since then, so I thought I'd share the thoughts I recorded at the time.

"Will no one rid me of this turbulent priest?" A famous quote attributed to King Henry II of England regarding the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. The King and Becket had political disagreements regarding the respective rights of the monarch versus the rights of the Catholic Church. Eventually, after quite a bit of political wrangling, the King was said to have uttered the question. Which was interpreted by four of his knights as an order. Those knights set out to capture Becket, and when he resisted they murdered him.

Why am I babbling about something that happened more than 800 years ago? Because human nature doesn't change. The details and the technology might be different, but we've just witnessed a similar tableau. A President who rails against his political opponents and implies that violent action against them would be welcomed by him. And his faithful followers acting accordingly.






Monday, December 10, 2018

Something Worth Watching?


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I'm back today with another video I wanted to share. I agree with the Kyle in that I don't think violence is the best way to achieve political goals, but I still think it's worth considering what regular people in France were able to get their elected leaders to do with this protest. And, as always, since this isn't getting much coverage in the corporately-owned mainstream media, I wanted to do my part in helping to make sure people know what's going on in the world. So, please take a few minutes to watch the video, and then you can draw your own conclusions. Peace!





Sunday, December 9, 2018

Use Up Those #Leftovers #Recipe!



Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is a recipe my mom used to make when we had leftover rice and vegetables and she needed an easy, fast, kid-pleasing meal. Truth be told, I still enjoy it, sometimes. ;-)

Ingredients:
2-4 cups leftover cooked rice (your favorite kind)
1-2 cups leftover vegetables (whatever kind you have on hand)
1-2 cups leftover tomato sauce
2 cups mozzarella cheese shredded
1 tbsp Italian dry seasoning mix
Salt and pepper to taste.

In a bowl, mix together the rice, vegetables, sauce, seasonings, and 1 cup of the cheese until they are thoroughly combined. Transfer the contents of the bowl to a buttered baking dish. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top. Bake in a 400 degree Fahrenheit oven until the cheese on top is brown and bubbly. Serve piping hot with a side of crusty bread.

Buon appetito!



Saturday, December 8, 2018

#Winter #Wonderland Of #Reading #Christmas #Giveaway! $120 #Cash #Grand #Prize! #Free To #Enter!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

There's a new giveaway for Christmas!  Please take a moment to check out the Winter Wonderland of Reading Authors & Bloggers Christmas Giveaway!!  There are lots of awesome books and prizes!! :-)  It's free to enter, there are over 160 prizes, and the grand prize is $120 cash payable through PayPal!! :-)  Now isn't that worth taking a few minutes to check out? ;-)   Here are all the details:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for stopping by today!  And don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)





Friday, December 7, 2018

#Animal #Rescuer's #Guide To #Staying ( #Relatively ) #Sane! #Free! :-)



Hey Everyone!! :-)

Just a reminder, for those who haven't checked it out yet, I've collected all my animal rescue/care posts together and published them as a small book.  If you'd like, you can download the book for free from Amazon, Smashwords, B&N, Kobo, and iTunes.



Thanks for stopping in today, and don't forget to check back tomorrow for the next installment of Mistral Dawn's Musings! :-)


Thursday, December 6, 2018

#APC #Spotlight: Time Will Tell By Scarlett Wells!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got Scarlett Wells in my APC spotlight, today! Scarlett is an active and supportive member of the  Authors-Professional Co-op Facebook group and her contemporary romance, personal journey, romantic literary novel, Time Will Tell, looks great! Here's the description:
When Emmett helps Viola on her first day of kindergarten, a friendship is forged. As the years pass, their friendship blossoms. But fate tears them apart just as they are discovering their true feelings for one another.

Can their love survive time, distance, and the challenges life throws at them? Only time will tell.
 If you think this sounds like something you might enjoy, go ahead and grab your copy here:


Thank you all so much for stopping by! Happy reading! :-)



Wednesday, December 5, 2018

#Agent Thoth's #Personal Log: Day 878


Hey Everyone! :-)

Agent Thoth discusses more of the trials and tribulations associated with living with hominids. Incidentally, if you've missed Agent Thoth's earlier entries, you can find them here: Thoth's Journal


Department for the Preservation and Confirmation of Intelligent Life (DPCIL)
Agent Thoth's Personal Log

Day Eight-Hundred-Seventy-Eight:
When my hominid-servant emerged from her nightly hibernation, today, she found the juvenile felid resting among the branches of her dead tree. At first, it seemed she didn't notice because she walked right past him with no reaction. But she soon returned with her H2O spray machine and savagely soaked my young companion without regard for the care he had so obviously taken to keep from disturbing her decorations when he made his ascent.

Naturally, he demonstrated no such concern for her baubles in his expeditious evacuation of the tree branches. Unfortunately, this resulted in several of the trinkets smashing against the floor, which drove my hominid-servant into further hysterics. Only once she had finished chasing the poor creature through every room in my domicile with her dastardly device did my hominid-servant return to clean up the mess she had caused.

But, despite the fact that the damage to her ornaments was clearly the result of her own actions, my hominid-servant maintained a steady stream of invective towards my unfortunate compatriot. Which, once again, is just further proof of the inability of hominids to behave in anything resembling a rational manner.


Hominids are so unreasonable, sometimes. ;-) You may have noticed that Agent Thoth has a new look. I hope you like his new picture as much as I do, but I'd love to hear your thoughts, either way. Feel free to let me know what you think in the comments. ;-) Happy reading, everyone!




Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Corruption And Cruelty, Common Bedfellows...


Hey Everyone!! :-)

I've got a little more of Alyce's adventure to share with you, today! Enjoy! :-)

Excerpt from Answers From Alyce:
"What's a concentration camp and how is it different from a prison," asked Squid-boy, apparently deciding to ignore my rude behavior.

"A prison is somewhere that a person who has been convicted of a crime is sent to serve a specific sentence. They know what they have been accused and found guilty of, they know how long their sentence is, there's due process and a right to representation, etc. There are an awful lot of problems with our criminal justice system, and the rights of people accused and convicted of crimes are violated with disturbing regularity, but at least they exist in theory."

I gestured at the exhibit. "These people don't even have that much protection under the law. They're just sent wherever the government wants to send them, for however long the government wants to hold them, and the only way they have a lawyer when they finally do get a day in court is if they pay for it themselves. The places they're sent are just holding facilities to warehouse people the government doesn't like. To concentrate them all in one place."

"Ah, thus the term 'concentration camps'," said Yax.

I nodded. "And they aren't being separated by size. Children are being taken away from their parents. For the adults and the older children, men and women and girls and boys are often separated. For the youngest children, toddlers and infants, they might not be separated by gender."

Squid-boy blinked at me. "I was under the impression that your species conformed to the mammalian norm of adults caring for partially developed offspring until they reach physical maturity. Is this not the case?"

My lips twitched at the way he described human families, but I nodded. "We do. Most parents love their children a lot and would do anything to see them safe and happy."

He made a buzzing sound in the back of his throat and gestured at where the uniformed robots were tearing the small robots away from the larger ones. "Then why separate the offspring from the parents?"

"Because the people running our government don't like these people and want to cause them pain. It's a deliberate act of cruelty. They took those kids away and didn't even keep track of who they took them from; they never intended to return them. They just wanted to hurt people they don't like."

"That's…"

"Barbaric. I know."

"Why separate the older children from the younger children?" interjected Yax.

I sighed. "Because older children and younger children require different types and levels of care, and because older children who don't know how to care for younger children might accidentally hurt them. Plus, separating them means that the private corporations that are running the places where the kids are being kept can charge more. And the people who own those corporations are friends with and donors to the people running our government. They put the youngest kids into what they call 'tender age facilities' and they can charge a premium for them, but really they're just concentration camps for babies."

"Corruption and cruelty working in tandem."

I nodded. "Those two things often go hand-in-hand in our society."