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

Friday, December 24, 2021

A Little Fairytale Fun For The Holidays... 😉


Hey Everyone! 😊

Since tomorrow is Christmas, I thought I'd give us all an early present and share a peek at how the Fae celebrate. Enjoy! 😉

Excerpt from Captivated by the Winter King:
Ankou removed his trousers and arranged Kate on her back on the bed while he kneeled over her. "Hold still," he said. Lying down next to her, he leaned over and kissed her gently on the lips. Trailing his kisses down her neck and chest, he took first one nipple and then the other between his lips. Alternating back and forth, he suckled them until they stood up in stiff peaks. Summoning the bottle of stimulating lubricant to his hand, he dribbled the liquid over her swollen buds, making her gasp and writhe on the bed.

Capping the bottle and setting it aside, he continued his journey southward and swirled his tongue around her navel. When he reached the top of the tuft of hair that protected her most intimate places, he sat up and looked at her.

Groaning, Kate met her lover's eyes. She wanted to ask why he had stopped but remembered just in time that she wasn't supposed to speak unless he asked her a question. Biting her lips, she maintained her silence.

Smiling to see that his Anamchara had remembered the rules of their game, Ankou said, "I want you to close your eyes and keep them closed unless I tell you to open them. Do you understand?"

Nodding, Kate said, "Yes, Master," and relaxed into the bed, closing her eyes.          

Shifting his position so that he kneeled between her outspread legs, Ankou kissed and licked his way down to her left foot. Rubbing his fingers under the arch and around her ankle, he massaged her limb until he felt the last of the tension drain out of it. Setting it aside, he moved to her other foot.

As Ankou massaged her right foot, Kate became aware of a pressure around her left ankle. She realized it felt like her leg was being held against the bed by someone's hand, but both of her mate's hands were occupied tending to her right foot. When the implications of those two facts penetrated her consciousness, she barely kept herself from panicking. Gasping, she forced herself to remain still and silent. She wanted to sit up and see what was happening, but that would mean disobeying the rules of the game. As would asking Ankou what was going on. Her heart racing, she tried to decide what to do.

Want to find out what Kate decides to do? Need a last-minute gift that you can send with the speed of an email? Looking for something to fill up that new Kindle you bought for your special someone? Grab a copy of Captivated by the Winter King at the link below. Happy reading! 😊

Friday, November 5, 2021

#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! :-)

Sunday, October 31, 2021

Button Soup #Recipe!


Hey Everyone!! 😊

I've got another recipe for you, today...sort of. 😉 First, as befits Halloween, a story. This one isn't one of my stories. This is an old story; an old folk tale. I don't know who originally came up with it, but I've heard several versions. The title I first heard it called was Button Soup, but I've heard it called Stone Soup and a couple of other titles, too.

It's about a town miser, an Ebeneezer Scrooge-type character, who lives in a town where a lot of people are starving. He's the only one who has money, so the rest of the town comes to beg for food, but he claims he doesn't have any. So, they write to his niece (or sister or another close relative, depending on the version) who comes for a visit. He's inhospitable and tells her she should leave because he has nothing to feed her. She tells him all she needs is a single button (or pebble or ax head, depending on the version) and she can make a delicious, filling soup.

Intrigued, the miser gives her a button, which she puts in a great big soup pot with a lot of water. He's fascinated to find out how this is going to turn into soup, so he stays with her as she stirs the pot. She makes small talk and eventually mentions that while the soup will be fine as it is, it would be an awful lot better if she just had a little salt. He thinks that over and then allows how while he doesn't have any food, he does have a bit of salt put aside. So he brings it to her and she adds it to the pot and keeps stirring.

This goes on for a while, and every now and again she mentions that if she just had one thing - an onion, a potato, a ham bone, a carrot, and on and on - the soup would be just that much better. And each time he claims he has no food, but he might have a little of that one thing put aside. Eventually, she has a ginormous pot of soup.

Then, she tells him the only thing the soup needs is some friends to share it with. So, they invite the whole town, and all the starving people get to eat. The end.

Anyway, Button Soup is what I call it when I have a bunch of bits and bobs leftover and I throw them all together into a single dish to make something. Because anything can go into button soup, it just depends on what you happen to have on hand.

So, that's my recipe for you, today. Take a look in your fridge, freezer, and pantry and see what you have that needs to be used up.  Then, use a little imagination and create something yummy. It doesn't have to be soup, though soup is a good vehicle for such a recipe, it can be a casserole, a stir fry, a hash, or whatever will fit your leftovers. And, to finish it off, why not invite a friend over and share?

Bon Appetit! 😊

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Something #Wicked This Way Comes...


Hey Everyone!! 😊

The other day I was going back through Taken By The Huntsman and, as I was rereading part of it, I thought, with Halloween just around the corner, it might be fun to remind everyone just why the Wild Hunt is considered so fearsome by the Fae. So, go ahead and take a peek at Jillian's thoughts as she waits to meet the Erlking for the first time. Enjoy! 😉

Excerpt from Taken By The Huntsman:
Jillian knew that the Hunt counted among its members some of the most violent Fae, such as the Harpies, and some ancient, faded deities, such as the Morrigan. But she also knew that there were other horrors within the Hunt. There was Ionhar, the Erlking’s second in command and a member of the fearsome race of Spriggans, who were a plague upon the roads of Fairie.

Ionhar was known to have been forced into becoming part of the Hunt after interfering when the Erlking slew his band of highwaymen. Because his service to the Hunt was not voluntary, any failure on his part to follow the Erlking’s instructions would result in a long and painful punishment. With that in mind, Ionhar was always extremely careful to be thorough in carrying out his duties. Which boded ill for anyone whom the Erlking had a reason to dislike.

The odd female Fae who had once been known as Jenny Green-Teeth was also a part of the Hunt. She had always been a lone Fae, and at one time she lured thirsty travelers to their deaths by promising them a drink of water and then drowning them in the water source she brought them to. Jillian didn’t know how such a Fae could fit into the goddess’s plan. But, apparently, she had somehow pleased the goddess, because she had later been granted additional powers. Before Jillian had been born, Jenny Green-Teeth had gained the ability to cause and control storms and had been renamed the Storm Hag. All of Fairie knew the story of the drowning Fae’s elevation, but no one was quite sure how she had become part of the Wild Hunt. One thing was certain, though, she served the Erlking loyally.

There were also the Fachan. Those Fae were actually members of the Winter Court, but several individuals had made themselves famous by joining the Hunt. They were horribly ugly Fae, whose looks were said to be enough to cause a grown male’s heart to freeze in his chest. Their entire bodies were covered in fur, and they had only one eye, one arm and hand, and one leg and foot arranged along the center of their bodies. They had large, bat-like wings on their backs, which were their only method of locomotion. The tops of their heads were one enormous mouth, which was filled with venomous fangs and a razor-sharp tongue.

All of these terrifying creatures, and so many more, answered to the Erlking. He also had the Jacks-In-Irons guarding his walls, and the Virikas to give his enemies to. If Ithel’s actions should bring the Erlking’s wrath down on the Summer Court, Jillian's people would be lost. She knew it was imperative that she do everything in her power to make it clear that the fault lay with only one Fae, and not the whole kingdom. Her mistress, Briallen, loved Ithel dearly and, for her sake, Jillian would try to make some attempt to gain mercy for the Summer king. But, in the final analysis, the fate of that male was of small concern when weighed against the welfare of the rest of the kingdom. Jillian hoped the Erlking would see her soon, before her imagination sapped all of her courage.

If you haven't read Taken By The Huntsman, and you'd like to get to know all these Fae a little better, why not grab your copy now? After all, who doesn't love a fairy tale? 😉

Sunday, October 24, 2021

Delicious, Easy Manicotti #Recipe!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

This recipe is a delicious, stick-to-your-ribs way to welcome in the cooler weather. Enjoy! :-)

1 package manicotti shells
1 15oz container ricotta cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup grated pecorino Romano cheese
1 10oz package frozen spinach thawed and squeezed dry
2 onions minced fine
4 cloves garlic minced fine
4 tsp fresh parsley chopped
2 tsp fresh basil chopped
2 tsp fresh oregano chopped
1 egg
4 cups tomato sauce (Recipe Here)
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large bowl, mix the ricotta, 1 cup of the mozzarella, 1/4 cup of the Romano, spinach, onion, garlic, basil, oregano, 2 teaspoons of the parsley, salt and pepper, and egg. Spread 1 cup of the tomato sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 inch baking dish. Stuff the uncooked manicotti shells with the ricotta mixture, and arrange them in a single layer in the dish. Cover with the rest of the tomato sauce and sprinkle with the remaining parsley, mozzarella, and Romano. Bake in a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 45 to 55 minutes, or until the cheese is browned and the manicotti shells are soft.

Buon Appetito!

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Delicious Autumn Pasta #Recipe!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is one of my favorite Fall pasta dishes. Enjoy! :-)

1 lb pasta (your favorite kind)
5 tbsp butter
1 large red onion thinly sliced
1 cup spinach chopped fine
1 small pumpkin seeded, roasted, and chunked
2 tbsp thyme leaves
2 cloves garlic minced fine
2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup grated pecorino romano
1/2 cup white wine (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, and save 1 cup of the cooking water. Drain the pasta and set it aside. Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter with the olive oil in a deep-sided skillet. Add the onion, garlic, thyme and salt and pepper and cook until translucent. Add the wine and simmer until reduced (optional step). Add the pumpkin, spinach, cheese, and the remaining butter to the skillet, stirring to combine. Add the cooked pasta and saved water to the skillet and toss them together. Garnish with more cheese and parsley, if desired. Serve hot.

Buon Appetito!

Sunday, October 10, 2021

A Quick Meal For Days On The Go #Recipe!


Hey Everyone!! :-)

This is a really simple recipe for those days when you just don't have two minutes to rub together. It's quick and easy with almost no clean-up. And it's delicious! :-)

1 English muffin or 2 slices of bread
1/2 cup hummus (your favorite flavor)
1 carrot
1 apple
1 zucchini
2 tbsp toasted pine nuts or sesame seeds

Toast the muffin or bread and spread the hummus over it while it's still warm. Use a vegetable peeler to peel off a strip or two from the carrot, apple, and zucchini and lay the strips on top of the hummus. Sprinkle the nuts or seeds over the top. Eat immediately or wrap up to take with you and eat on the go. Wrap the unused portions of the carrot, apple, and zucchini tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate to use in other recipes or to eat later as snacks.

Bon Appetit!