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December 31, 2015

2016 What Kind of Year Will You Have?

In 2016 I’m going to hit one of those milestone birthdays! You know the kind that makes you cringe and yet I feel so extremely blessed to still be walking this earth. As you go through life there are some good years, some not so good years, blah years and really bad years. I rate 2015 as one of those blah years - not really great, but not really bad either. So I’m planning on 2016 being a fantastic year. 

So what am I going to do to make it a great year? I’m going to improve my attitude. It all starts with me. And that’s about the only New Year resolution I’m making this year. I know I need to lose weight, exercise more, work harder, yada, yada, yada. Been there, done that and the T-shirt is worn out. So this year my number one goal is to change my attitude and be more grateful.

How am I going to do that?

December 24, 2015


From all of us here at the Plotting Princesses, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and a most joyous and prosperous New Year!  

December 22, 2015

Reflecting On My Year - By Kathy Ivan

As we all get ready to celebrate the holiday season, and I had a post due, I decided to take a look at the changes I've made in 2015 and the impact they've had on me personally and my writing. I thought with the New Year just around the corner, I'd share these with you.  (As you can see, I brought snacks.)

1. Quitting the day job.

December 17, 2015

Best of the Best #MFRWauthor #RssosSisters #amreading #christmasbooks

I am often asked what is the best book/romance book you have ever read? I have to giggle--"Besides my own??"

I like to read mysteries, thrillers, cozies, romantic suspense, contemporary and historical romance. Naturally, I have read books that have stayed with me forever. Was it because of an aahh Calgon take me away instance? Or did I finish the book and instantly, reread it?

Only two books had me instantly rereading:

A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Devereaux
Come to Grief by Dick Francis

Something about them had me wanting to experience the contents again. And to this day, I still consider them to be very special.

And then there are books that I periodically revisit, such as:

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.   

I first read Rebecca at age thirteen. For me, the book isn't a romance, but a thriller. Yes, there's a nice meet between the hero and heroine, but more importantly, the death of Rebecca. And that Mrs. Danvers??? She played with the heroine's and our minds.

Then there are authors whose works I really like and will consume everything they write:

December 15, 2015

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year @sloanebcollins #PlottingPrincesses #amwriting #fudge #traditions #MFRWorg

Christmas is my favorite time of the year.  I love the lights, the trees, the food, the traditions, and the spirit of the holiday.  I made the decision the last couple of years to not decorate due to lack of time and four cats who know no boundaries, and I really miss it.  The cats were restless last night, and I kept hearing things banging around in the kitchen so I finally investigated.  One (or more) had gotten a side drawer open and found a small Christmas tree ornament and was batting it all over the tile floor.  I hadn’t even realized it was in that drawer! 

Even though there are trees up and the store is decorated at work (my office is at the Neiman Marcus flagship store in Dallas), there are lights up in the neighborhood, and Christmas music is on the radio, it just hadn’t been feeling like Christmas is next week.  Until I got home last night and found that the annual Tin of Fudge and Cherry Mash had arrived.  My sister-in-law makes THE best fudge.  I ripped open the package, saw the gorgeous Christmas tin, took the lid off, and there it was.  FUDGE.  NOW it feels like the holidays have arrived.

December 10, 2015

Linda Steinberg on What's Your Happiness Quotient? 4 Things #MFRWorg #goodhealth #moneycan'tbuyhappiness #love

In the movie City Slickers, when Billy Crystal’s character Mitch asks Curly for the secret of life, the old man replies that it’s just one thing and you have to figure it out for yourself. 

It’s true that we’re all different, and we each have something special and specific that drives us. But we also all have common needs. The secret to a happy life? I believe it’s just four things.

December 8, 2015

#Sherlock's #Christmas Spirit @lsfabre #mfrworg

In “The Adventure of the Blue Carbuncle,” a Christmas goose leads Holmes and Watson on a merry chase from one vendor to another to apprehend the stone’s thief and determine how the Countess of Morcar’s blue carbuncle wound up in the bird’s crop in the first place. (1)

The American public might be surprised to know that while a goose served as the Christmas bird in this story, many Victorians chose to feast on turkey instead. The American bird joined the Christmas tree and crackers to become part of British holiday celebrations during the 1800s. Although the turkey was imported into the country beginning in the 1500s, the Victorians introduced it as a replacement for the traditional goose. (2)

December 1, 2015

Michelle Miles: Christmas Traditions

Every year, the day after Thanksgiving we head out to find our perfect Christmas tree. This year, we debated on whether or not to get a fake one. I was sort of leaning toward fake and flocked (because I love alliteration) but neither my husband nor I could bring ourselves to spend upwards of $300 on a fake tree.

I know, I know. We could save it for future years. But the biggest problem with that is we have storage issues and I don't think we really want to rearrange the entire garage to store a fake tree. Or even put it up in the attic storage space.

This year, Friday was rainy and cold and windy. It wasn’t exactly the best weather to get out and look for a tree. We decided to hit Lowe’s first and see what we could find. All the trees were wet because it had been raining for the last twelve hours or something crazy like that. We wandered around in the garden section looking at trees and freezing our bums off. We stopped to chat with one of the workers there who had been loading trees most of the morning. Granted, it was midday and there weren’t many people out there but there were a few here and there looking for trees. We knew we only had about an hour before it started raining again to get the tree home.

Not finding anything we couldn’t live without, we headed back inside and looked at the fake trees again. But again… we just couldn’t pull the trigger on that. Back outside, and shivering we were heading out when suddenly…there it was. The perfect tree. We snapped it up and got it home before another downpour.

Isn’t it pretty?