Friday, December 27, 2019

Hot Property Book Review

I was excited to get to the fourth book in the series, Hot Property (Hot Zone) by Carly Phillips.  Since we talked about all three sisters, I couldn't wait to see who this book was going to talk about.  I read the copy from the library which after looking at Amazon seems to be the out of date version (Hot Property (The Hot Zone) by Carly Phillips) so feel free to check out which ever version you can find.

Just one short season ago, major league center fielder John Roper had it all: the looks—and personal life—of a sports hero and the public's adoration. But this hot property's lucky streak has run out. After a World Series disaster, fans diss him, shock jocks mock him and his dysfunctional family hassles him for money he really can't spare.

Now it's up to him, and Hot Zone publicist Amy Stone, to get his life back on track.  Amy finds it's easier said than done. What with the constant intrusions of his nutty family, a crazed fan playing stalker, and Roper's refusal to put his own needs first, she's starting to think that life in the fast lane isn't all it's cracked up to be. But when the two retreat to a secluded lodge, the sexy center fielder throws Amy a curveball—one she never saw coming.…

John Roper is a client of Hot Zone and also long time friend with the sisters.  He was mentioned in many of the other books and it was great to finally get to know more about him.  He was a sports hero and loved by many for his baseball career.  However, this turned quickly when he has a disasterous World Series.  Many fans are angry and sending hate mail and packages to him.  He is being constantly mentioned on the radio for his bad performance.  In addition, he hurt his arm and needs physical therapy to get back to playing condition.  John is having a horrible time making all of this happen because his family is pulling him down with all of their drama.  He seems to be the glue that holds his family together but it is ripping apart his professional life and Amy steps in to help.  She is the newest face of Hot Zone as the niece of Spenser who recently moved up from Florida.  Amy has to trick John into going away because he can't get the radio, fans and his family to stop making this about them so that he can focus on his own recovery.  He is upset at first but then quickly learns that it might be the best thing that every happened to him.  You have to pick up the book to follow these crazy ups and downs because his family is crazy and nothing they do surprises me.  This might have been my favorite but it is always hard to tell because I always say that when it is the last book that I have read.  I thought it was a great end to a cute series.  I hope that you check it out for yourself and enjoy the whole series as much as I have.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Hot Item Book Review

Hot Item (Hot Zone) by Carly Phillips is the third in the series about the Hot Zone sports agency.  Each book in the series is about one of the sisters so you can get to know the whole family.  It is super fun to follow along with some people you already know from the other books and new ones that you haven't met.  The Hot Zone sports agency helps with PR and more for sports celebrities.

He'll push all her boundaries and make her realize rules are made to be broken…

Cool, collected Sophie Jordan loves her daily routine running her family's top sports management agency, as long as she gets to stay behind the scenes. But with big sister on maternity leave and little sis on her honeymoon, she's forced to step up to the plate. And a recent media crisis surrounding the disappearance of superagent Spenser Atkins is not going to make the job any easier.

Enter star quarterback and notorious bad boy Riley Nash who, for reasons of his own, needs to track down Atkins. Up until now, Sophie has kept a strict no-dating-clients policy, but each day with Riley makes her rule near impossible to follow. With her job and her heart on the line, Sophie will need to make the toughest choice of her life! *This book previously released in 2004. Updated for content and modernized.

Sophie is the quietest of the sisters and prefers to be behind the scenes but she doesn't have that chance for long with her big sister on maternity leave and her little sister on her honeymoon.  Sophie has to be the one to take the reigns and take care of things while her uncle and business partner are both gone.  Riley Nash is a quarterback that they have taken care of for awhile but he needs some extra help when he finds out some things that might change his life.  She spends some time with Riley and she is quickly rethinking her no dating clients policy.  They are fighting against things even after by saying that it will be a one time thing but while helping him take care of his personal life, Sophie learns a lot about him that makes him irresistible.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the great series and enjoy for yourself.

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

One Snowy Night Book Review

I was glad to get this holiday book to enjoy with the cold weather starting and the holidays upon us.  One Snowy Night: A Heartbreaker Bay Christmas Novella by Jill Shalvis was the next book in my pile and I didn't realize that it was just a little fast read but I super enjoyed getting the chance to meet these characters that were mentioned in other books but get to know so much more in this book.

It’s Christmas Eve and Rory Andrews is desperate to get home to the family she hasn’t seen in years. Problem is, her only ride to Lake Tahoe comes in the form of the annoyingly handsome Max Stranton, and his big, goofy, lovable dog Carl.  Hours stuck in a truck with the dead sexy Max sounds like a fate worse than death (not), but Rory’s out of options. She’s had a crush on Max since high school and she knows he’s attracted to her, too. But they have history… and Max is the only one who knows why it went south.  They’ve done a good job of ignoring their chemistry so far, but a long road trip in a massive blizzard might be just what they need to face their past… and one steamy, snowy night is all it takes to bring Max and Rory together at last.

Rory works for Willa taking care of animals and she is going home for Christmas for the first time in years.  She promised her step father that she would pick up her mom's present for him and bring it.  Her boss, Willa, arranges for Max to drive her home since he is going to the same place.  No one knew their past but they actually went to high school together and have a long and complicated history together.  Rory doesn't feel great about getting a ride with Max but she loves his dog Carl so she knows that she is going to be the best out of a bad situation because she needs to get home and doesn't have the money to get there any other way.  They are drawn to each other as soon as they see each other and then they have to get into the car and spend hours on the road driving.  They work out some of their past issues and move forward with their issues although the weather doesn't have them moving forward for long.  There are accidents, road closures and more.  They eventually need to take a detour to get a hotel for the night.  You have to pick up the book to see if they get over themselves and their past to move forward and if they ever make it home for Christmas.  It was a great story and a great addition to the series.  I can't wait to read another in this series!!

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

The Brides of the Big Valley Book Review

I saw this on the new release section so it came home with me in the hopes that it wasn't just three stories that I already read.  I was excited to find that it was three brand new stories in The Brides of the Big Valley: 3 Romances from a Unique Pennsylvania Amish Community by Wanda E. Brunstetter.  The first was Deanna's Determination by Wanda Brunstetter.  The second was Rose Mary's Resolve by Jean Brunstetter.  The third was Leila's Longing by Richelle Brunstetter.

3 Short Stories of Love in a Unique Amish Community--Now a #1 Publishers Weekly Bestseller!

In an area of Pennsylvania called The Big Valley, a uniquely blended Amish community thrives in which 3 distinct groups of Amish identify themselves by the colors of their buggy’s top—white, black, or yellow. Join New York Times Bestselling Author Wanda E. Brunstetter, her daughter-in-law, and granddaughter in experiencing the stories of three young women who search for faith and love within this special place. Deanna is a widow who sees her second chance of love slipping away. Rose Mary is at a point in life where she must choose the path of her faith and the right man to walk with her on it. Leila is burdened with family responsibilities and wonders when she will ever start a family of her own.

The three stories couldn't be more different but more intertwined if they tried.  IT was interesting because it talked about the three different groups of Amish communities that were all different because it includes different beliefs and different color tops on their buggies.  Each of the store follow different groups so that you look into the differences in the groups.  The first story was about Denna who is a widow with a young son with downs syndrome.  Denna is working to find love after she lost her first love but her new man wants to leave her after he starts to go blind because he doesn't want to be a burden.  Denna is heart broken with all of the loss in her life but you have to read her story to see how it turns out.  The second story was about Rose Mary who was dealing with the fact that she is falling for someone inside her church that wants to become English but she makes the hard decision that they shouldn't date.  After moving on, she finds herself attracted to an English person who isn't even Amish.  She wants to stay in the church and with her family but she feels a great pull towards her new beau.  You have to pick up the book to find out what she chooses to do. The third story was about Leila who is trying to deal with everything at home and feels that means that she is going to have to give up her chance to have her own family.  She is quiet and shy and doesn't get out until her family forces her to go to a singing where she quickly meets someone.  She is drawn to someone who isn't in the same church community and she isn't sure if she should retreat to her family where she feels more comfortable or try figuring out if they have a future together.  Make sure you pick up this book and see how all three stories end because I promise that you will be drawn in and have trouble putting down this different book about the differences in the Amish cultures.

Monday, December 23, 2019

Menu Plan Monday 12/23

Pasta with garlic bread and sauce
Chinese with Family
Steak, Twice Baked Potatoes, Rolls and Apple Tarts
Pasta with meatballs or Lasagna and garlic bread
Rosemary Chicken with potatoes or egg noodles
Holiday Party with Family

Last week was a blur but we had all the meals on the plan and even though I was exhausted, I made it happen.  Sunday night we actually had two guests come and stay for dinner who were friends of my son so it was a larger meal then I thought was happening.  This week is a little more relaxed since we are off of school.  We have company coming so we have more for dinner but I think that we are going to have enough in the house that I am not going out to get anything special but milk at the store.  Fingers crossed there aren't lots more trips to the store!!

Friday, December 20, 2019

Playing for Keeps Book Review

I was excited to get back to this series even though there was wait list for many of the other newer books in the series.  Playing for Keeps: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis is the 7th book in the series.  It was a little wait since I finished all the books that I had from the library but this one came in pretty quickly so I picked it up after finishing my last book that I was reading.

If you’re planning on falling in love…When it comes to the confident, charismatic Caleb Parker, Sadie Lane feels the spark—the kind that comes from rubbing each other the wrong way. She’s a tattoo artist, he’s a straight-laced mogul. But after they accidentally co-rescue an abandoned dog from a storm, Sadie sees a vulnerable side to the seemingly invincible hottie.
you’d better be sure…Caleb doesn’t do emotions. Growing up the underdog, he’s learned the hard way to build up an impenetrable wall. Perfect for business. Disastrous for relationships. He’s never worried about it before—not until he finally gets behind Sadie’s armor and begins to fall.
… someone is there to catch you. Both guarded and vulnerable, Sadie and Caleb are complete opposites. Or are they? Shocked at their undeniable connection, can they ever admit to wanting more? That all depends on what they’re each willing to risk.

I have enjoyed the mentions of Caleb Parker in other books because he is friend and business partner to Spencer.  I have also really enjoyed the mentions of Sadie because she calls him suits and works in the tattoo shop and the day spa.  It was interesting knowing both of the people at the beginning of the book but just finding out way more history.  Caleb is always wearing suits and taking care of business so Sadie thinks he is out of her league but Caleb has always been interested in Sadie.  They end up getting closer when they rescue a dog together.  Caleb found the dog in the rain and since he thinks he is allergic, Sadie takes the dog home with her.  They are both strong and resilent and have gotten over a lot from their pasts which brings them together even more.  They decide to share custody of the dog and they end up trading off every day which means that they get to see each other almost every day.  The friendship grows into even more but you have to pick up the book to find out what happens that changes things.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the series and enjoy it as much as I have.

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Noel Street Book Review

I put this book on reserve a long time ago when I saw it was in the new release section online.  I didn't check until after reading it that it was in a series of books and I luckily read the one before it... but maybe not the first one in the series.  Noel Street (The Noel Collection) by Richard Paul Evans was the third book in this great Christmas series.

In this new offering from “the king of Christmas fiction” (The New York Times), #1 bestselling author Richard Paul Evans shares a story of heart, loyalty, and hope as he explores the deeper meaning of the holiday season and asks what it truly means to love and forgive.

The year is 1975. Elle Sheen—a single mother who is supporting herself and her six-year-old, African-American son, Dylan, as a waitress at the Noel Street Diner—isn’t sure what to make of William Smith when his appearance creates a stir in the small town of Mistletoe, Utah. As their lives unexpectedly entwine, Elle learns that William, a recently returned Vietnam POW, is not only fighting demons from his past, but may also have the answer to her own secret pain—a revelation that culminates in a remarkable act of love and forgiveness.

Although this book is set in 1975, it makes you feel like it could be happening at anytime.  Elle Sheen is trying to do the best that she can for herself and her young son, Dylan while waitressing in the small town diner.  The worst part is that the more money they need for things the more that she has to work which means that there is less time to spend with her son.  It is hard to get ahead with breaking down car, rent past due and more.  She takes her car into the shop to find out that it needs expensive service that she really can't afford in addition to the other bills but they can't be without a car.  William Smith is a Vietnam veteran who was a prisoner of war and comes to the small town to make a new life.  He is working in the car repair shop when he meets Elle and Dylan.  William fixed Elle's car by himself on his own time but ended up really sick.  William is all by himself and fighting a nasty cold so Elle stayed and helped him through it with tea, soup and medicine.  They become friends and you have to pick up the book to find out how the friendship grows.  I thought that this was a great quick read that I had trouble putting down.  I read most of it in one night and then picked it up and finished most of it the next morning and then put it in my bag to read the last chapter.  I thought it was a great story that had me wanting to know that was going to happen next.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the great series for yourself.  It is a heart warming story that really brings the holiday feelings like all the books by this author.

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Window on the Bay Book Review

I don't remember if I got this book off the new release shelf or if I put it on the reserve but I knew that I had a limit on the time that I had to read it because there was a long waiting list.  Window on the Bay: A Novel by Debbie Macomber was a hard cover book which meant that I didn't want to drag it around in my bag making it heavier then it already was.  I was hoping that I could get through the book before the due date and I should have known that it wouldn't take me long at all because I couldn't put it down.  I don't think that it made it out of the house because I read it so quickly.

Jenna Boltz’s life is at a crossroads. After a messy divorce from her surgeon husband nearly twenty years ago, she raised her two children on her own, juggling motherhood with her beloved job as a Seattle intensive-care nurse. Now that Paul and Allie have gone to college and moved out, Jenna can’t help but wonder what her future holds.

Her best friend, Maureen, is excited for Jenna’s newfound independence. Now is the perfect time to finally book the trip to Paris they’ve been dreaming of since their college days. But when it comes to life’s other great adventure—dating—Jenna still isn’t sure she’s ready to let love in . . . until an unexpected encounter begins to change her mind.

When Jenna’s elderly mother breaks her hip, Dr. Rowan Lancaster saves the day. Despite his silent, stoic exterior, Rowan is immediately smitten with Jenna. And even though Jenna is hesitant about becoming involved with another surgeon, she has to admit that she’s more than a little intrigued. But when Jenna’s children approach her with shocking news, she realizes that she needs to have faith in love and embrace the unexpected—before the life she has always dreamed of passes her by.

This book is a story about two friends who have gone through many of lives troubles together since they were kids.  Jenna had a bitter divorce from her surgeon husband and vowed not to date at the hospital again.  She put in her effort to be a great mom to her two kids and wonderful ICU nurse.  Jenna is finding that having an empty nest is harder then she thought it would be when Paul and Allie are both out at college so she decides to try to find her own life.  Maureen is her best friend and she has decided to start dating but her quiet librarian ways make it hard to meet people.  Maureen has built a long term friendship with Logan, one of her patron's because he comes in every week and asks for recommendations on books on his lunch break from the construction site.  Logan finally breaks down and asks Maureen out.  Jenna and Maureen get back to planning their long diverted plan to going to Paris when Jenna's mom falls and ends up needing surgery.  Dr. Rowan Lancaster is the surgeon and he takes special interest in Jenna and her mom but it takes awhile to where down years of being against dating surgeons.  There are so many surprises and twists and turns in this book that even I didn't see coming so you have to pick it up and find out what happens with all four of these great characters.  I hope that you enjoy the book as much as I did.

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

About That Kiss Book Review

I couldn't believe that I was at the 5th book in the series and it was the last one in the pile from the library.  About That Kiss: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis was sadly the last book in the pile so there were no more books to reach for when I was done with it.  I had to quickly put all the books on reserve to make sure that I got to finish the series.  The great thing is that I was going to have more to read but there was a line of 39 other people waiting for one of the books so I guess we will see how long it is to get the rest of the series for my poor planning.

When love drives you crazy . . .
When sexy Joe Malone never calls after their explosive kiss, Kylie shoves him out of her mind. Until she needs a favor, and it’s a doozy. Something precious to her has been stolen and there’s only one person with unique finder-and-fixer skills that can help—Joe. It means swallowing her pride and somehow trying to avoid the temptation to throttle him—or seduce him.

the best thing to do . . .
No, Joe didn’t call after the kiss. He’s the fun time guy, not the forever guy. And Kylie, after all she’s been through, deserves a good man who will stay. But everything about Kylie makes it damned hard to focus, and though his brain knows what he has to do, his heart isn’t getting the memo.

… is enjoy the ride.
As Kylie and Joe go on the scavenger hunt of their lives, they discover surprising things about each other. Now, the best way for them to get over “that kiss” might just be to replace it with a hundred more.

I read this awhile ago and returned it to the library already so I am going back to finish my review. Joe is someone that we have heard him mentioned and now we get to meet him and get to know him.  Joe is working as a investigator and part of the tight knit group of friends.  Joe meets Kylie and his solo lifestyle quickly changes.  Kylie needs help finding something that is lost.  She goes to Joe and he takes on the case on the side to help her in exchange for wood working present for his sister.  They work together and the more time that they spend together, the more they realize that they really care for each other.  You have to pick up the book and find out what adventures they go on through out the book.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the series.  I loved this book and the series so I hope that you check out the series for yourself.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Menu Plan Monday 12/16

Pasta with garlic bread and sauce
Tacos with white rice
Spicy Honey Mustard Chicken with mac and cheese
Fried Rice with Egg Rolls
Dinner out with Family
Chicken Fries, Chicken Wraps and Homemade Fries

I moved things around because my son went to a friends house for dinner on Monday so we had Fried Rice with egg rolls because they aren't something he likes.  Tuesday was Salsa Sloppy Joes with mac and cheese.  Wednesday we did Pasta with garlic bread.  Thursday was Philly Cheese Steak Pasta.  Friday was Leftovers.  We cleaned up the fridge and got most of the stuff cleared out.  Saturday we went with pizza hut for lunch and we fed my son dinner before going to a holiday open house.  Sunday we had my son's favorite dinner which was great after a long week and we are up for an even busier one this week with something going on every night!!

Saturday, December 14, 2019

November Month End Shopping and Eating Out Budget Update

I work hard to stay under my $160 monthly budget every month using sales, coupons and gift cards to get the best deals to stock up on.  Getting to the end of the year means that I know how I am doing for the whole year which has been a little bit higher then I have been in past years.  I am also above the average for both monthly grocery spending and take out spending.  The great news is that I already had a turkey in the freezer for Thanksgiving so I wasn't out looking for the deal on that this month.  The bad news is that the local paper only including Smart Source inserts and the prices of groceries increasing means I haven't been getting as many deals in recent months. 

I just realized that I didn't get the end of the month budget review posted earlier because I kind of missed the month ending.  I know that I was at the store a lot at the beginning of the month and not as much at the end of the month because of the holiday and family visiting.  The beginning of the month posts are broken down in my half post here so I removed the descriptions here but left the picture and the amount spent on each transaction.  All of the transactions from the second half of the month have the total spent, picture and the break down of what I got at the store.

Better late then never for my November shopping totals!!

Wegman's $2.03

Wegman's $2.03

Wegman's $23.82

Harris Teeter $13.09

Harris Teeter $0.61

Aldi $15.04 

Harris Teeter $11.38

Aldi $4.48 

Harris Teeter $5.65

Wegman's $3.04

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.41

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.61

Harris Teeter $0.61

Giant $2.04

There was a weekend deal to get cereal where they were $0.99 each and I had a coupon for $1 off 3.

Giant $2.04

I had a free coupon loaded for the bread and the cereal was on sale for $0.99 each but there was a coupon if you bought three boxes.

Harris Teeter $9.02

We were out of potatoes and iceberg lettuce so I got them here because they were cheaper then Aldi.  I got the turkey lunch meat on sale and my friend printed me a coupon because I used mine and couldn't print anymore.

Aldi $11.70

I was out of all of this and decided to run to the store to get  marshmallows for Rice Krispie Treats and celery for the Thanksgiving stuffing.  We needed shortening for the deep fryer.  We were out of cheese and bananas so I got some of them.

Target $0

I went to Target and used a gift card for these and got a little Christmas gift with what was left of the gift card.

CVS $0.08

I was super sick and went to the store to get medicine.  They gave me a coupon for $1 off Softsoap and I got a $1 ECB so this was free.  I got $3 back in ECB and I didn't make it back to the store to spend.  I hate doing that but I am so much out of the game that I am going to just call it a win on the one soap.

Harris Teeter $15.35

We went to get soda and we had to go to two different stores before we found the ones that we wanted.  It didn't seem like too hard of an order but the first store was out of all Fanta and the we almost those the second store was out of Sprite but my husband found it on an end cap.

Aldi $0

My parents went to Aldi to get a few things and ended up throwing in all this stuff for us so it was a great bonus grocery shopping trip that didn't come out of my grocery budget.

Total Retail $376.89
Total Savings  $250.81
Total OOP $126.08

Amazing stock up month with 70 boxes of pasta and 40 pounds of flour.  I also got a lot of meat which has been enjoyed and frozen to enjoy later.  I made a bunch of pumpkin and chili to freeze to add to my stockpile.  Love having quick meals in the freezer in case there isn't time to make dinner.

Eating Out

We got Pizza Hut for $8.47 at the beginning of the month and enjoyed some yummy pizza.  We got another pizza later in the month for $8.47 ad then again the next weekend for $8.47.  My parents bought us Chinese food which was a yummy dinner and leftovers for lunch the next day with even more leftovers to use in fried rice.  I took my parents to First Watch for lunch while we were out shopping and they super enjoyed it (looking at the calendar it was actually December but still including it).  Best part is that I used my gift card so it was nothing out of pocket.  Total Spending $25.41 spent for the month

Monday, December 9, 2019

Menu Plan Monday 12/9

Pasta with garlic bread and sauce
Salsa Sloppy Joes with mac and cheese
Philly Cheese Steak Pasta
Fried Rice with Egg Rolls
Chicken Fries, Chicken Wraps and Homemade Fries

Last week was a little crazy but we got Pasta on Monday, Chili with Corn Chips on Tuesday and  then I forgot to take the pork chops out so we ended up with leftover Wednesday.  Pork Chops were Thursday with mac and cheese.  Friday we did leftovers again because we had so many.  Saturday was a Pasta Dinner at an advent celebration so I didn't even have to cook.  Sunday was my son's favorite dinner after basketball. So I didn't get two of the meals on the table as planned but I got dinner on the table every night so super happy to be ready to start another busy week.

Friday, December 6, 2019

Chasing Christmas Eve Book Review

I was shocked when I got to the 4th book in the series. I couldn't believe that I had gone through so many books.  Chasing Christmas Eve: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis was the next book in my pile so I just picked it up after finishing the last book.  I couldn't believe the pile next to my computer to review because I hadn't written a review on any of the books because I spent too much time reading.

Meet cute...Run for the hills—temporarily. That’s Colbie Albright’s plan when she flees New York for San Francisco. Wrangling her crazy family by day and writing a bestselling YA fantasy series by night has taken its toll. In short, Colbie’s so over it that she’s under it. She’s also under the waters of a historic San Francisco fountain within an hour of arrival. Fortunately, the guy who fishes Colbie out has her looking forward to Christmas among strangers. But she’s pretty sure Spencer Baldwin won’t be a stranger for long.
Make merry...Spence’s commitment to hiding from the Ghosts of Relationships Past means he doesn’t have to worry about the powerful—okay, crazy hot—chemistry he’s got with Colbie. Just because she can laugh at anything, especially herself... just because she’s gorgeous and a great listener…just because she “gets” Spence immediately doesn’t mean he won’t be able to let Colbie go. Does it?
…and hope for a miracle. Now the clock’s ticking for Colbie and Spence: Two weeks to cut loose. Two weeks to fall hard. Two weeks to figure out how to make this Christmas last a lifetime.

Loved this book because I had liked Spencer in the previous books that I read and I was excited to finally get to know more about him and his new love interest, Colbie.  Spencer has had trouble finding love because he made a successful business and sold it so he had a lot of money.  He has been a lot more of a loaner because he only trusts his small group of friends after a college friend wrote a story about him bringing out more women who throw themselves at him.  Spencer is looking for love and trying to figure out how he will know if it is real.  He meets Colbie after he has a dog that he is walking knock her into a fountain.  He finds her a change of clothes and offers her a place to stay while she is visiting for three weeks.  Colbie ran away from the pressures of home because she was having trouble making her writing deadline. She decided that she wanted to go somewhere tropical since this was her first vacation away from home ever but there was a storm so she decided on San Fransisco.  She not only finds the freedom great for writing but she falls for Spencer.  The two of them enter into the relationship knowing that she is going to leave on Christmas Eve.  They both decide that they aren't okay with that but then Colbie reveals her secret of who she really is and it tears them apart.  You have to pick up the book to find out what happens but I promise that it is worth the read.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the series.  I hope that you will enjoy the books as much as I did.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Accidently on Purpose Book Review

I can't believe how quickly these books have gone with reading at night and in the morning through our Thanksgiving break.  I am going to miss these slow starts to the morning when we go back to regular schedule.  I think that my reading might also suffer.  Accidentally on Purpose: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis is the third book in the series and the first one that I had to have a hard back book from the library.

There’s no such thing as a little in love . . .Elle Wheaton’s priorities: friends, career, and kick-ass shoes. Then there’s the muscular wall of stubbornness that’s security expert Archer Hunt—who comes before everything else. No point in telling Mr. “Feels-Free Zone” that, though. Elle will just see other men until she gets over Archer . . . which should only take a lifetime . . . 
There’s no such thing as a little in lust . . .Archer’s wanted the best for Elle ever since he sacrificed his law-enforcement career to save her. Their chemistry could start the next San Francisco earthquake and he craves her 24/7, but Archer doesn’t want to be responsible for the damage. The alternative? Watch her go out with guys who aren’t him . . .
There is such a thing as . . .As far as Archer’s concerned, nobody is good enough for Elle. But when he sets out to prove it by sabotaging her dates, she gets mad—and things get hot as hell. Now Archer has a new mission: prove to Elle that her perfect man has been here all along . . .

Elle has been in the other books but you don't really get to know her until this book.  It is nice to get to know the reasons that she acts the way she does which is sometimes off putting.  She is very strict in the things that she does and makes sure that everyone follows the same set of rules.  Archer runs a security firm and although he is the last person that she wants to be drawn to, she still feels a pull towards him.  Archer is very closed off and doesn't have long term relationships.  He runs his business and takes in people who become close friends and family.  It does make you wonder if he can make all these great friends, why he doesn't have other long term relationships.  Elle and Archer deny their feelings in many of the earlier books but their friends get them to tell the truth.  They share a history that you learn about and she is very thankful.  I thought that this was a great book and I liked reading it just as much as the others in the series.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the series.  

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

The Trouble with Mistletoe Book Review

I was excited to start this new series after starting in the middle of the series and then going back to the beginning.  The Trouble with Mistletoe: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis is the second book in the series.  I enjoyed getting to read a series that was in order and there were already a bunch out.  I can't wait to look into other books by this author.

If she has her way . . .Willa Davis is wrangling puppies when Keane Winters stalks into her pet shop with frustration in his chocolate-brown eyes and a pink bedazzled cat carrier in his hand. He needs a kitty sitter, stat. But the last thing Willa needs is to rescue a guy who doesn’t even remember her . . .
He’ll get nothing but coal in his stocking. Saddled with his great-aunt’s Feline from Hell, Keane is desperate to leave her in someone else’s capable hands. But in spite of the fact that he’s sure he’s never seen the drop-dead-gorgeous pet shop owner before, she seems to be mad at him . . .
Unless he tempers “naughty” with a special kind of nice . . .Willa can’t deny that Keane’s changed since high school: he’s less arrogant, for one thing—but can she trust him not to break her heart again? It’s time to throw a coin in the fountain, make a Christmas wish—and let the mistletoe do its work . . .

Willa works in the pet shop and is really great with the animals and saving some people that need help.  But she has never been lucky in love and always puts others before herself.  She ends up coming eye to eye to Keane who stood her up for a Sadie Hawkins dance in high school that she never got over.  Keane comes into the shop looking for someone to pet sit his cat for the day so that he can get some construction done which is his job.  Keane doesn't remember Willa from high school and is focused on a few construction projects that he needs to finish and make the money to move to his next project like he always does.  Willa watches the cat but doesn't loose the attitude towards Keane and he can't figure out why.  Wait for the reasons that he stood her up in high school and I think that you will be amazed.  You have to pick up the book to find out what happens next and promise you will be amazed at the roller coaster of emotions as these two deal with each other.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the great series.  I know that you will enjoy these fast reads and not be able to put them down either.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Sweet Little Lies Book Review

I started a new series from one book that I found at the free shelf at the library.  Sweet Little Lies: A Heartbreaker Bay Novel by Jill Shalvis was going back to the first book in the series so I was interested to catch up with all the people that I met in the 6th book.  It was great to find a new series to check out the whole thing.

In her Avon debut, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Shalvis launches a fun, sexy new contemporary romance series featuring a boy, a girl, and one wily wishing well.
Choose the one guy you can’t have . . .As captain of a San Francisco Bay tour boat, Pru can handle rough seas—the hard part is life on dry land. Pru loves her new apartment and her neighbors; problem is, she’s in danger of stumbling into love with Mr. Right for Anybody But Her.

Fall for him—hard . . .Pub owner Finn O’Riley is six-foot-plus of hard-working hottie who always makes time for his friends. When Pru becomes one of them, she discovers how amazing it feels to be on the receiving end of that deep green gaze. But when a freak accident involving darts (don’t ask) leads to shirtless first aid, things rush way past the friend zone. Fast.

And then tell him the truth.Pru only wants Finn to be happy; it’s what she wishes for at the historic fountain that’s supposed to grant her heart’s desire. But wanting him for herself is a different story—because Pru’s been keeping a secret that could change everything. . . .

I thought that this was starting the series off on the right foot.  I really enjoyed getting to know Pru who is a captain of tour boat and enjoys her job.  She briefly dated her boss and really hasn't had great luck in love.  She is making her life with her friends in the small tight knit community around her apartment building.  Finn is working at the pub and one of her small group of friends.  Pru ends up hitting Finn with a dart and having to administer first aid.  It is interesting to watch the friendship quickly turn into more with these two.  I hope that you check out this book and the rest of the series...stay turned for the next book in the series review.  I have a big back up of all the books that I read in a row because they were such page turners. I read five in a row very quickly and I am sure you will have the same trouble putting them down.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Menu Plan Monday 12/2

Pasta with garlic bread and sausage sauce
Chili with corn chips and cheese

Pork Chops with mac and cheese
Philly Cheese Steak Pasta
Fried Rice with Egg Rolls
Chicken Fries, Chicken Wraps and Homemade Fries

Last week was so busy with family in town and we were always on the go.   We had pasta with garlic bread and sausage sauce on Monday.  Tacos and white rice was Tuesday night when my parents came into town.  Lasagna was my made ahead and thrown in the oven to get dinner on the table after shopping.  Thursday night was Thanksgiving dinner which we had Turkey, Sausage Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, Yeast Rolls, Butternut Squash with apples, Asparagus, Black Olives and Cranberry Sauce with lots of pies for dessert.  We had leftovers for lunch and dinner on Friday.  Saturday we had leftovers for lunch and Chinese for dinner after a day out at two National Parks to get Junior Ranger badges for my son.  Sunday we had leftovers for lunch and did my son's favorite dinner of Chicken fries, Chicken Wraps and homemade fries.  Mostly the menu completed so super happy to have extra meals ready to go in case we needed them.  The biggest problem was all the dishes!!  UGH!!

I hope that this week is a little more calm but I know that we are still busy this week so we will try for an easy week to get the meals on the table.