Check out my fiction -
Check out my science fiction series - The Fall of the Altairan Empire

Monday, November 26, 2012

The Need to Create

Do you feel the need to create something? It seems to be an almost universal human drive. You don't have to be an artist or a musician to participate. Everyone has an outlet for their creative urges. I like to use words to create worlds and stories. I also love playing with cloth and yarn, piecing quilts and creating costumes and crocheting all sorts of things. Even cooking can be a creative exercise. I have friends who garden to fill that need. Others who build things with wood or metals or other materials.

What is your canvas? What do you like to create?

I'll leave you with a few pictures of some of my latest projects as inspiration:

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thursday Recipe - Dog Muffins

My daughter is into gourmet cooking, plus she likes spoiling her purse dog. He's a 75 lb chow-lab mix named Wookie.

These are her muffins she likes to make for him. Our other dog, Sasha, loves them, too. Plus, if your kid eats one, it won't kill him. Easy to make and healthy, try these out for your favorite canine friend. You can adjust the ingredients to suit your dog's tastes.

Puppy Muffins

2  cups oat flour
1 cup oatmeal
2 bananas (or 1 cup of chopped fruit and veggies)
2 eggs
1 1/2 c applesauce (or pureed squash)
1/2 c peanut butter.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Put everything except oatmeal and oat flour in blender. Blend until smooth.

3. Stir in oat flour by hand.

4. Add in oatmeal in batches until it reaches a thick consistency, like muffin batter.

5. Spoon into prepared muffin tins, fill about 2/3 full.

6. Bake regular muffins for 15 minutes, small muffins for 10 minutes.

7. Remove from oven and let cool thoroughly. Store in an air tight container up to 1 week.

8. Use as treats for good puppies.

Makes about 48 small muffins or 24 regular muffins.

Monday, November 19, 2012

What Has NASA Ever Done For You?

It's called spinoff technology and it is changing your life every day. Let's keep exploring our universe. We all benefit.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Thursday Recipe - Dairy Free Rice Pudding

Call it rice pudding and no one eats it. Call it sweet, sticky rice and they eat it but no one knows what it is. This is my attempt to recreate the sweet rice served as a dessert in Thai restaurants. It's one of the few desserts I can still have, at least for this month.

Sweet Sticky Rice, aka Dairy Free Rice Pudding

2 c. short grain rice or sticky rice or glutinous rice
1 can coconut milk, plus enough hot water to equal 4 c. total liquid
1/4 c. sugar, brown or white
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 t. salt

Stir together all ingredients in a 2 quart crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 4 - 6 hours, until rice is done. Serve warm or cold. Garnish with fresh mango or strawberries, if desired. You can also add 1/2 c. raisins if you want the more traditional rice pudding.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Bestsellerbound Friendship Blog Hop

I've talked about the Bestsellerbound group before. It's the nicest bunch of authors, editors, and readers you'll ever meet. I'm so glad I discovered them. I haven't met any of them in person, but they've touched my life and changed it in ways I would have never guessed. Because of my friends there, I have a new publisher and I've found new readers for my stories. I've also found people who understand when things get tough and are there to support and help. I've found people to sympathize with. I've found people who are my friends and I'm proud to call them friends. I hope I can be there for them as much as they are for me.

Thought on friendship: You can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but don't try picking your friend's nose.

*** is a wonderful community of indie authors. Created by Darcia Helle in the late summer of 2010, and featuring resident authors, Maria Savva and Stacy Juba, the community has grown and now boasts over 500 members. Quite a few of the members are active on the forum. The group wanted to celebrate one thing that has kept them all going over the past two years: friendship. Many friendships have been formed on the board. In fact, one of the most common things our members say is that BestsellerBound is the friendliest group of writers they have found. We pride ourselves on that.

To celebrate not only a successful 2 years as a popular indie writer forum, but also the friendships we have made on the board, a few of the regular members have organised a blog hop. The theme for this blog hop is of course, Friendship. If you follow the tour, you can read blogs by each of the participating authors based on the theme of friendship. Some of the authors will be writing about fictional friendships in their novels, others will be writing about real friendships. We are sure it will be an interesting and varied blog hop. We are also offering a big prize! One lucky winner will win the following prizes:

Secrets by Darcia Helle (Print)
Haunted by Maria Savva (Print)

Harmony's Passing by Joel Kirkpatrick (print)
Belkin Mod Standing Cover for Kindle Fire
Nexus Point by Jaleta Clegg (ebook)
Sink or Swim by Stacy Juba (ebook)
Alaskan Healing by Lana Voynich (ebook)

The contest is very simple. There is a Rafflecopter form available on the BestsellerBound Recommends blog. All you have to do is follow the instructions there to enter! Contest runs until November 26.

All the blogs are taking place today, and the contest will run until.... (insert date)

Check out the following blogs, for some wonderful stories about friendship!

BestsellerBound Recommends
A Word Please - Darcia Helle
Maria's Goodreads Blog - Maria Savva
The Tale's The Thing - Joel Kirkpatrick
One Stop Reading - Stacy Juba
Scribblings from my mind - Lana Voynich

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Thursday Recipe - New Diet

I'm dealing with too much this week. I've been put on a very strict diet, on top of the other two diets I'm supposed to be following. I'm struggling to figure out what I can still eat. None of these are weight loss diets, if you were curious. I'm supposed to be on the glycemic load diet for my blood sugar and a low-salt diet for my blood pressure. Now I get to add a diet for my kidneys. The list of banned foods is very long.


So I get to eat plain vegetables, except for tomatoes, onions, and a couple of others that I don't like anyway. I can have fresh meat, but not with any seasonings other than some herbs and salt. No pepper, no spicy mixes. I'm not supposed to eat fruit, except for bananas, pears, and blueberries. I'm banned from sauces and dressings. I can have lots of breads and grains, except I can't eat most of them because of my other diets. I can't have MSG because it triggers migraines, but I also can't do additives, preservatives, artificial flavorings or colorings. I'm going to have to start cooking from scratch. Except I'm so drained dealing with health issues and fibromyalgia I have no energy.

I've been banging my head on the wall trying to figure this out. Anyone out there have suggestions or favorite recipes?

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Thursday Recipe - Cabbage Rolls

Every once in a while, I get a hankering for some good old-fashioned down-home cooking. I have no idea where cabbage rolls originated, although I suspect they are at least partially German. They're a cross between meatloaf, lasagna, and I'm not sure what. I do know they are delicious.

Cabbage Rolls

1 lb. ground beef or turkey
2 c. chopped kale, spinach, or other dark leafy green
1 c. oatmeal
2 eggs
1/2 c. minced onion
1 t. dried basil
1 t. garlic powder
1 t. dried oregano
1/2 c. mayonnaise
12 large cabbage leaves, I prefer Napa cabbage
1 20 oz. can spaghetti sauce

Mix meat, kale, oatmeal, eggs, onion, spices, and mayonnaise in a large bowl. Squish it around until it's well combined. Set it aside.

Fill a large pot half full of hot water. Bring to a boil, then turn off heat. Dip cabbage in the hot water 2 or 3 leaves at a time, just long enough to wilt them, 15-20 seconds. Remove from the water and drain.

Heat oven to 400° F. Lightly grease a 9x13 baking dish. Scoop about 1/3 c. meat filling onto a cabbage leaf. Wrap and roll it, kind of like an egg roll, tucking the sides in and making sure the meat mixture is completely inside. Place it seam side down in the baking dish. Repeat with the other leaves and the rest of the meat mixture. Pour the spaghetti sauce over the filled cabbage leaves. Bake uncovered for about 1 hour, until meat is done.

Serve with garlic bread and a fruit salad for a complete meal.