***You can still enter Carolyn Brown, Catherine Mann, and Aemelia Gray’s contests in the previous blog post! Prizes drawn the 15th!
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prize. All prizes announced the 15th.
Theme: Sourcebook authors share their favorite places to write!
WELCOME CH Amirand….
The image above is a pic that I took with my phone of my favorite writing spot…my kitchen table. The pussy willows are from our yard and so is the forsythia in the background.
I used to write in my office, now it’s the place I stash promo for upcoming conferences and events and my extensive collection of research books. If I had to pinpoint when I stopped writing in my office, it would have to be when we re-did the kitchen and added in the lovely antique copper backsplash and repainted. The soft buttery yellow and sage green cabinets are soooo soothing that I find I really can’t concentrate if I’m in my office. My hubby thinks I need to repaint it the same colors as the kitchen…I think he wants to kick me out of the kitchen! LOL But the kitchen is where all of the action really is in our home. Here’s a pic I took on St. Patty’s Day after I took the Irish Soda Bread out of the oven.
This year I baked two different kinds of Whiskey Cake…the traditional and one I invented combining two favorite recipes..my great-grandmother Margaret Mary Flaherty’s Butter Cake with the traditional Whiskey Cake. Both were yummy.
Thanks so much for including your Sourcebooks’ Sisters, Lisa! I’m including the cover of my July book JESSE, since DYLAN’s been out since January. Besides…I love the cover for JESSE. LOL!
Jesse: The Secret Life of Cowboys
By C.H. Admirand
ISBN# 978-1402265198 Release date: July 2012
Jesse Garahan no longer believes in love. Until he meets Danielle Brockway and her tiny daughter, Lacy, on their way to their new home in Pleasure, TX. Danielle’s worthless ex-husband left her high and dry, and now she’s looking for a simple small-town to start over in — and then she meets Jesse. She just can’t seem to help herself where long-limbed, swaggering Texas men are concerned. Suddenly, life is anything but simple.
Excerpt: (can be found on C.H. Admirand’s website)
Jesse Garahan hit the gas and breathed in the hot Texas air. He loved the feel of the wind in his face and the engine rumbling beneath him as the hot sun smiled down, trying to parboil him to the driver’s seat.
He’d left the ranch in two pairs of very capable hands—his brother’s. Tapping his fingers on the steering wheel, he wondered if he could find a wild woman like the one Garth Brooks was singing about on the radio. Hell—he didn’t have time for romance right now, too much to do and not enough time to get it done in. Setting that thought aside, he concentrated on the road ahead of him and coaxing as much speed as possible out of his truck.
Flooring it, tearing ass along the road to town, he grinned. He loved driving and figured he missed his calling, having to work at the ranch with his brothers—but Garahans stuck together no matter what, and as long as the ranch still had life left in it, a Garahan would be running it. With enough work for ten men, most days he and his brothers were worn to the bone, but not ready to roll over and give up.
A speck of color off in the distance at the side of the road had him cutting back on the accelerator. Could be one of the Dawson sisters; Miss Pam had told him she’d been having a bit of trouble with her old pickup. Slowing it down, ready to lend a hand, he sucked in a breath and held it. Steam poured out from under the hood of a car that a very curvy, compact, jean-clad blonde was opening the hood to. When he noticed the rag in her hand, he knew what she was going to do.
“Damn fool woman!” He feathered the gas for more speed, cranked the wheel hard to the left, whipping the car in a perfect one-eighty. Gravel spit out from beneath his tires as he skidded to a halt behind her vehicle.
When she jumped back with a hand to her heart, he threw the truck in park and swung his door open with enough force to move the dead summer air like the early morning breeze coming across the pond at the Circle G. Stomping over to her, he grabbed her by the elbow and pulled her off to the side, out of harm’s way.
When she yanked free of his hold, he was more than ready to read her the Riot Act. Drawing in a deep breath, he was about to let loose when he heard a little voice calling.
“Lacy, honey, I told you to stay in the back seat until I fixed the car.”
Looking down, he noticed a pint-sized cowgirl staring up at him, her big blue eyes wide with wonder. Not much surprised Jesse Garahan, but the little bit of a thing, no bigger than a fairy, was wearing pink—from the top of her head to the soles of her feet—and stood out like a swirl of cotton candy at the county fair.
“Go on back now; I have to thank the man for trying to help us.” The woman’s voice was firm, but the little girl wasn’t listening. Before he could process that fact, the vision in pink was tugging on his jeans and asking, “Are you a good guy or a bad guy?”
He shook his head at the incongruity of the situation. He’d intended to put the fear of God into the woman foolish enough to open the cap of her overheated radiator while she stood in front of it, and instead here he was staring down at the tiniest, pinkest cowgirl he’d ever seen.
“I uh…” He didn’t know how to answer. If he’d done what he’d intended to do—yell at her mother—the little girl would probably be crying now, and positive he was a bad guy. “I stopped to help.”
When the little one nodded but refused to let go of his jeans, the woman came closer and soothed, “He’s a good guy, honey.”
The little girl tilted her head to one side and frowned up at him. “But he gots a black hat—Gramma says good guys wear white hats.”
Jesse chuckled. “Is your grandmother a fan of Gene Autry or Roy Rogers?”
Her little head bobbed up and down, and her cowgirl hat slipped off her head and would have hit the ground if not for the bright white cord attached to it. She was still looking up at him when she said, “Uh-huh.”
“That was a long time ago, and only on TV,” the cowgirl’s mother told her. “The good guys wear white or black hats now.”
The little one bobbled and grabbed a hold of his leg with both little hands and whispered, “Daddy wears a black hat.”
He didn’t need to know that. Concentrating, he couldn’t figure out a way to delicately loosen the little one’s grip without scaring her. Her mother surprised him by kneeling next to him. Looking down at them, he remembered the times his mother had gotten down to eye level with him when he’d been scared as a kid. It always helped ease most of his worries—except for the biggest one—why wasn’t his father coming home?
To keep from letting his mind go down that rocky path, he focused on the still-steaming engine and grumbled, “Don’t you realize how dangerous it is to open the cap on an overheated radiator?” He’d learned that particular lesson from his grandfather years ago; his pride had taken a direct hit, but he hadn’t ended up disfigured from steam burns.
The blonde’s head snapped up and their eyes met. He couldn’t help but notice the frosty blue daggers pointed directly at him.
“I was going to be careful to keep the cap facing away from me.” She cupped her hands around her daughter’s where she still held tight to his leg, and urged, “Come on Lacy, you can let go now.”
To his relief, the little one finally did as she was told. When her mother lifted the itty-bitty cowgirl up in her arms, he relaxed. The only kids he came into contact with were the handful of teenagers who came out to the ranch, working off a debt they owed to his older brother Tyler and his fiancée, Emily.
“But, Mommy,” she whispered, “I gots to ask him.”
He was standing close enough to hear. “Ask me what?”
“Are you a real cowboy?”
Before he could answer the little girl added, “I never seen one in my whole life!”
“Your daddy’s a cowboy.”
“Nuh-uh.” Lacy shook her head. “He rides bulls, not horsies, ’member, Mommy?”
Jesse couldn’t keep the chuckle inside; the rumbling sound seemed to capture little Lacy’s interest because she poked her tiny pointer finger in the middle of his chest.
“Lacy, what did I tell you?” Looking up at him, the blonde’s eyes were troubled. “I’m sorry, she’s curious about everything. We’re working on keeping our fingers to ourselves.” She smoothed a hand over the fly-away hair on the top of Lacy’s head and said, “Aren’t we, sweetie?”
“I was trying to find the sound, Mommy,” the little girl admitted. “His lips din’t move.”
Not much touched his heart since the woman he’d been planning on marrying changed her mind, but this miniature cowgirl had the walls surrounding it cracking. He smiled down at them and it felt good inside. “Name’s Garahan, ma’am,” he said, tipping his hat to the little lady. “Jesse,” he said, staring into the mother’s cool blue eyes