The Hungry Family

Feeding My Family Body and Soul


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Release Day (It’s Finally Here!!)

I want to celebrate this day by eating chocolate with all of you!!

My kids often ask, “If you could have one special power, what would you want?” Of course, they mean the ability to fly (which could be handy when we’re running late for the school bus) or lasers shooting from my eyes (also handy for cooking dinner) or super speed (great for cleaning the house in the blink of an eye) but what I would really want, would be the ability to make baked goods appear out of thin air and then send them to anywhere in the world on a thought. I believe that power is the true path to world peace.

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Anyway, to day is release day for Christmas Kisses: An Echo Ridge Anthology and I wanted to share a little known fact about the book. We slipped in some pretty awesome recipes. That’s right, each story has a recipe that goes with it!

In The Candy Counter Heiress, Andy has a thing for banana flavored chocolates (and kisses) so Lucy whipped up a recipe for Chocolate Banana Nut Bread.
Christmas Makeover introduces you to one of the hot spots in Echo Ridge where the pizza is to die for. Cami Checketts has included a recipe for Emma’s Homemade Bread that will have you going back for seconds.
Rachelle Christensen’s Hope for Christmas is a story with a whole lot of heart and her recipe for Carlos’s White Chicken Chili
w/Optional Slow-Cooker tips
has a whole lot of flavor!
Soda Fountain Christmas, by Connie Sokol, celebrates the fun of yesteryear as Kenworth’s Department Store works to regain the sense of community department stores were built upon. To celebrate days gone by, Connie included a recipe for Martha Jean’s Apple Cider Donuts.
Heather Tullis, author of One Winter Night, knows how to spice up a story and her recipe for Fay’s Gingerbread Cupcakes is just the thing to cap off your holiday parties.
BUT, you get so much more than wonderful recipes with Christmas Kisses. The stories are sure to capture your imagination–and your heart–and transport you to Echo Ridge where romance, Christmas music, and twinkling lights abound. You can pick up your copy and start reading TODAY because, ta da! it’s release day!!!


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The Organized Bride

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I must admit, I get a kick out of releasing a new book. There’s just something so magical about release day…I have a totally stupid grin all day and fall asleep with it still in place. That confessed, I’m positively thrilled to let you all know that the second book in the Billionaire Marriage Brokers’ series: The Organized Bride is now available in the Kindle Store.

If you read the first book, The Academic Bride, you met Pamela Jones, a modern fairy godmother if there ever was one. Pamela specializes in business marriage contracts, but she can spot a love match from a mile away. When Pamela has a good feeling about a bride and groom, sparks are sure to fly and she’s up to her old tricks once again.

In this book, we meet MaKayla…
MaKayla thought taking a job as an event planner for a high-end hotel would be a wonderful lead into opening her own events business. However, a one year no-contact clause leaves her clientless if she quits. With nowhere to go, she is intrigued with Pamela’s offer for a one-year contract running charities and overseeing contributions–until she finds out that to take her dream job, she also has to take Gabe…for better or worse.

You can pick up your copy by clicking here.

Read on for an excerpt!

Book 2 cover

Excerpt from The Organized Bride:

Gabe gestured toward the doors. MaKayla walked a couple feet and then stopped so fast that Gabe bumped into her, knocking her forward. He reached out and grabbed her shoulders, pulling her against his chest to keep her from falling.

For just a moment, they both froze, and Gabe could smell her deep scented perfume. A tremor went through her body—or both of theirs, he wasn’t sure—and he released her shoulders.

“Sorry.” She ducked her head as she tucked her hair behind her ear again, and Gabe had the insane desire to reach out and try that himself. “I was startled because that’s my name.” She pointed to the fresh paint on the concrete. “Well, it would be if I was changing my name.” Her cheeks colored slightly.

Gabe hurried to explain. “That’s your parking spot. I should have warned you about the name, but I thought it would be best if my colleagues knew you as MaKayla Russell.”

MaKayla smiled, but it looked more like a beauty-queen-on-a-parade-float smile than the one he’d seen in her photo. “You’re the boss.”

She started toward the doors again, and Gabe fell in step beside her, partially to present a united front when they walked through the door and partially so he wouldn’t run over her again if she stopped. It wasn’t the running over her that bothered him, so much as the holding her close. That had churned up feelings he hadn’t seen in a long time, feelings he needed to keep a lid on, because he was, as she so aptly pointed out, the boss, not someone who could pursue those feelings, even if he wanted to.


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Chocolate Angel Food Cake

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In honor of the new box set, Of Love and Magic’s, preorder status; I’ve put together a recipe for Chocolate Angel Food Cake. This cake would make a wonderful Valentine’s dessert – or any day dessert for that matter. 🙂 Check out the new book while savoring the delicious flavors of chocolate angel cake!Chocolate Angel Food Cake

Ingredients

1 1/2 cup egg whites (10-12 large eggs)

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 cup flour

1 cup powdered sugar

1/2 cup cocoa

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 ounces milk chocolate, shredded

2 teaspoons vanilla

Directions

Place the egg whites and cream of tartar in a metal mixing bowl. Beat until stiff peaks form and the whites are glossy. Add the vanilla and beat well.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, powdered sugar, cocoa, baking soda, salt, and shredded chocolate. Fold 1/2 cup of the powdered mixture into the egg whites. Repeat until all the flour mixture is incorporated into the eggs.

Pour batter into a non-stick angel food cake or bunt cake pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 -35 minutes or until cake springs back. Run a knife around the edge of the pan and invert the pan onto a funnel or cup and allow to cool for 2 hours. Remove the cake from the pan and serve with fresh whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

 

 

 

 


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Calvin Sparks and the Crossing to Cambria

As a kid, I think I made up my own world on a daily basis. It’s part of having an imagination the size of Texas. Now, I see my kids doing the same thing. Sometimes, they come together to play in these imaginary worlds, and sometimes they are off on their own adventures. One of the reasons I enjoyed reading Calvin Sparks and the Crossing to Cambria, was that it reminded me of what it was like to be a kid and have a place where I could ride a dragon, fight monsters, and use magic to make my bed.

Book Summary:

calvin sparks“I told you,” said Perry. “I told you we’d find it.” Calvin smiled and shook his head at Perry.
“You were right, Calvin,” Anna said, standing in awe. “You were absolutely right.”

For years, Calvin’s grandfather has told him stories about a cabin deep in the woods that holds an amazing secret. Then one day Calvin and his two best friends find the cabin. Inside they discover more than just the world’s coolest clubhouse. This is The Crossing—a magical portal that takes them to another world.
Soon all three are in Cambria, a fantastic world filled with bizarre people, wonderful food, real magic, and even dragons! There Calvin learns that his family has a secret history and he’s swept up in the same dangerous mission that got his father killed thirteen years ago.
Can Calvin, Anna, and Perry stand up to the evil sorcerer Galigore and his grotesque minions? Or is Calvin doomed to follow in his father’s footsteps? This epic adventure story is perfect for kids and parents alike. Full of action, adventure, mystery, and magic, it’s an entertaining read that will keep you guessing.

You can purchase a copy of the book by clicking here.

** I was given a copy of the book by the author to review.


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New Clean Romances Available

Hello All!

This has been such a busy year and it’s only mid-January. How are you coming on those New Year’s resolutions?

I wanted to take a moment and share a clean romance collection with you. Since working on Christmas in Snow Valley, I’ve fallen in love with coordinating with other authors to put together box sets. I think they are a fantastic bargain for a reader — indeed I purchase my fair share. Where else can you get several books by proven authors at $4.99? This new set, Of Love and Magic, is a wonderful collection of romances for Valentine’s Day. You can preorder now!

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  • Angel in a Black Fedora, by Sherry Gammon
    Ciel Björk died a tragic death…but she got over it. Now she works as an undercover angel, answering people’s prayers. She’s sent to the sleepy little town of Port Fare, New York to help turn Chloe’s dreams into a reality. As secrets are revealed, Ciel soon learns that things are not as simple as they seem.
  • A Wish in Her Hand, by Amberlee Day
    Professor Miri Keeler’s life is perfect, and she knows just the sort of man she wants to share it with. When she meets a genie who’s willing to grant her a favor, she uses her wish to get the attention of her crush, poet Jamison Arbor. But has the genie’s magic missed its target? Miri suddenly has the attention of not only Jamison, but also of Alex, an attractive maintenance man. How will she know which is the right match for her, or what’s real and what’s magic?
  • Reality Ever After, by Cami Checketts
    Pregnant at eighteen, Sydney Richland’s happily ever after is in serious peril. Her grandmother’s ghost can work miracles, but she also might ruin Sydney’s chances with the man of her dreams.
  • Prom Diaries, by Taylor Hart
    Sixteen-year-old Lacy O’Donnell discovers her best friend has cast a spell, putting everyone in a time loop, forcing them to relive the same four days before prom over and over. The good thing—Lacy doesn’t remember the loop. The bad thing—Drake Davis, the guy she’s been stalking, does. Only true love’s kiss can break the spell, but true love’s kiss has to happen at a precise moment. It’s not exact science…it’s exact magic.
  • What If Wish, by Lucy McConnell
    Morana is doomed to a life cataloging spells deep below the palace unless she can make her magic bloom. If her deepest wish comes true, it would open up all sorts of possibilities. The whispers that she was a fluke of nature would hush. The King would stop stalking her. Her parents would no longer live under a cloud of shame. And, Adam could look at her as more than a friend. Despite the promises magic holds, Morana will quickly learn that the thing she wishes for most, could be her undoing.


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It’s not Black Friday – but it feels like it!

Amazing Christmas Deals!
Christmas baking is a longstanding tradition treasured by many families. It can also add stress to the busy Christmas Season. Instead of spending hours in the kitchen and making a mess, you can have your holiday baking done in no time and dirty just one bowl with One Dirty Bowl: Fast Baking, Faster Cleanup, from bestselling author Christina Dymock. Each recipe is simply made to impress, including,
Chocolate Cherry Delights and
Santa’s Favorite Cookies.
The ebook is available for just 99 cents through December 8, 2015. You can order a copy of the book from Amazon by clicking here, or ask for it at your local book store.
Hosting a cookie exchange?
 Check out Christina’s article, published in the Desert News, full of tips for
Need a little boost to your holiday spirit?
Blue Christmas, from Amazon top selling Christian Romance Author Lucy McConnell, is available for 99 cents from December 4-10, 2015.
As head of Snow Valley hospital’s fundraising effort, Paisley Hackett barely has time to organize the craft show, cookie decorating party, and the annual Christmas Ball. What she doesn’t have time for is falling in love with Clay Jett, the incredibly handsome bass player who sweeps into town. She’s been burned by a tourist romance before and, with everything going on, Paisley will have to work overtime to protect her heart from Clay and his swoon-worthy ballads.
Need a Bigger Boost to
Your Holiday Spirit?

Blue Christmas is also available as part of the Best Seller, Christmas in Snow Valley. Written by 6 top-selling authors, Christmas in Snow Valley is a wonderful collection of clean Christmas romances.
Snow Valley, Montana, is a small community with the tradition of doing Christmas big. Festivities begin with tree lighting in the town square the day after Thanksgiving and continue until the culminating romantic Christmas Ball. From the Polar Express to a Winter Carnival, there’s something for every wonder-filled child–and every couple who’s in love–or about to be.


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Family Talk Blog Tour

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You know I am all about family! I love to share books we read as a family, recipes, and everyday tidbits that make my day. Almost everything I do centers around family. That’s why, when I was asked by the author if I’d like to join her blog tour for Family Talk, I jumped on the chance.

Our family councils tend to be informal. We may have them while eating dinner or riding in the car. In fact, I don’t know that we’d even call them family council meetings because they are short and to the point. Usually, it’s when there’s a change coming up that will affect the family – like a shift in job responsibilities or scheduling. We present the information, answer questions, and then move on. I’ve found that even that short communication makes things run smoother.

Author Christy Monson, a retired family therapist, has put together a wonderful guide to holding family council meetings. She shares stories, incites, and tips that are sure to help improve any family’s communication.

What I liked about the idea of holding formal family council meetings, was that it would train my children, mostly by example, on how to conduct a meeting and keep the attendees on task and on topic. It’s a skill they won’t necessarily learn anywhere else and once they hit the business world, it can come in handy.

There are several ways to purchase Family Talk if you’d like to pick up a copy for yourself or as a Christmas gift.

Amazon *  Familius * Christy’s website

Do you hold regular family councils or are your family meetings sporadic? I’d love for you to share what works for your family by leaving a comment below!