Sunday, December 14, 2014

Rise of the Faire-Amanti - Raine Thomas Release Day Blitz

Stranded in the desolate Dark Lands, Kyr and Ty share a bittersweet reunion. Alametria lies on the brink of darkness. Their people are still reeling, believing she’s dead at Ty’s hands. With no other choice, many have turned to the Guardians and Advisor Vycor for guidance, never suspecting they’re being led to slaughter.

Kyr and Ty encounter overwhelming challenges in their fight to save their people: a deadly environment, murderous Marauders, and powerful protections preventing them from reaching the palace. When the journey itself could mean their deaths, the one thing that keeps them going is the thought of bringing VycorDane to justice.

Facing a battle on multiple fronts, lacking resources, and significantly outnumbered, Kyr and Ty must rely on each other in the race to save their planet. Will they beat the odds and restore peace to Alametria...or will Vycor’s evil destroy them all?

Turning so he faced Kyr, he lifted a gloved hand to her shoulder. Are you sure you want to do this?

She nodded, but he saw the rapid pulse in her neck belying her fear. They were both struggling to ignore the flight reflex pounding in their minds.

He considered walking to the storage bay and pulling out the sleeping pallets Gren had packed for their use, but he worried that taking even that much time would have them both abandoning this plan and giving in to the protections. Instead, he bent down and kissed her.

The feel and taste of Kyr shoved every other thought to the far corners of his mind. Although it had only been a few days since he last touched her like this, he felt like a starving man being offered a sumptuous buffet. Her soft lips eased open beneath his, begging him to deepen the kiss. He obliged, rubbing his tongue against hers as she tasted him just as thoroughly.

He ached to touch her. He broke away from her long enough to yank off his goggles and gloves. She hastily did the same. As if of one mind, they didn’t stop there, stripping out of their flight gear with quick, purposeful movements. When Ty was done, he helped Kyr remove the rest of her clothing. Then they came together in a mad rush, their mouths once again finding each other in a searing kiss.

Open your mind to me, Kyr thought. Only to me.

Yes. Only you.

He barely processed her demand over the raging need coursing through his body, but understood what she wanted. Since their first time joining here in the Dark Lands, he had learned that he had to keep a barrier between them when they made love. If he didn’t, they ran the risk of their joined power spiraling out of control like it had that time. On the more practical side, there was also the fact that if he allowed himself to feel everything she felt, their lovemaking would be over practically before it started.

Trust in us, she encouraged him as her hands ran along the muscles of his arms and chest.

Heedless of the consequences, he did as she asked, fully opening his mind to hers.

Raine Thomas is the award-winning author of bestselling Young Adult and New Adult fiction. Known for character-drivenstories that inspire the imagination, Raine recently signed with multiple award-winning producer Chase Chenowith of Back Fence Productions to bring her popular Daughters of Saraqael trilogy to the big screen. She's a proud indie author who is living the dream. When she isn't writing or glued to e-mail or social networking sites, Raine can usually be found vacationing with her husband and daughter on one of Florida's beautiful beaches or crossing the border to visit with her Canadian friends and relatives.

Catch up on the rest of the Ascendant Series here

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Another Shot at Love/Done With Love - Niecey Roy Promo

Wow, wow, wow!
Another Shot at Love & Done with love are some of my books and now 
they have amazing new makeovers!
These are some books you don't want to miss out on!

Sexy RomCom
What's Love??? series
Imogen Gorecki has a problem—her twin sister just got engaged, and guess who’s the best man? That’s right, her scum-of-an-ex-boyfriend whom she caught cheating with a bottle-blonde, with fake breasts and a stripper’s flexibility. There’s a disturbing possibility her eyes will never recover. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Hottie McTottie Monday/Cover Reveal Noel's Hart - Katie Mettner

Happy Hottie McTottie Monday Cover Reveal!
Today I'm featuring the 3rd book in the Snowberry Holiday Series, 
Noel's Hart!
This series is filled with sexy Hottie McTotties!

DRUM ROLL PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Back Blurb: 

Psalm 61:4: “You are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings.”

Savannah Hart grew up in the school of hard knocks and as an adult wants everything in her life to be perfect. She’s poured blood, sweat and tears into her home and her business to make that happen. Suddenly faced with choosing between her home, her shop, or her health, she discovers an added complication, Noel Kiss.

Noel Kiss is determined to stay in Snowberry and get to know his twin, December, again. He buys the local family restaurant, only to discover his new neighbor is Savannah’s Flower Emporium, run by none other than the mysterious Savannah Hart. 

Desperate for relief Savannah agrees to Noel’s crazy proposal. She tells herself when her life is perfect again she will tell him goodbye, but Noel knows his life is perfect with her in it. Can Noel convince her that his arms are the shelter she’s been looking for or will he be holding a broken heart on Valentine’s Day?

Here on Forget The Housework I like to interview the Hotties I'm featuring and I managed to convince mild mannered Noel to come by for a visit. 

Tobi: Welcome to Forget The Housework, Noel! I owe Jay a pizza from Gallo's for convincing you to come, but it was worth it!

Noel: Hi, Tobi, thanks for having me today. I'm laughing about the pizza. I was quite charmed to be asked and planned to come all along, but it was fun messing with Jay. My sister really picked a keeper when she married him.

Tobi: Wait, so I didn't have to offer pizza from the best place in town to get you to come here?

Noel: *Laughing* No, but we can let Jay think he had something to do with it, makes him feel special. I don't think Gallos is the best place in town though. Have you ever heard of Kiss's Cafe? That's the best place in town. *wink*

Tobi: Always the salesman, aren't you? I'm familiar with the Kiss's Cafe in Rochester, Minnesota. That's where we met you in December Kiss, but there isn't one in Snowberry? 

Noel: Yet. Give me another month or so and there will be. I'm remodeling Bucks Tackle Barn and turning it into a Kiss's Cafe. With both Kiss twins in the town there has to be a Kiss's Cafe there too.

Tobi: Congratulations, Noel! I know it will be a big success, Jay couldn't stop talking about that December Morning omelette you make. We know December lives in Snowberry, but are you moving there too? When we left Jay and December you were heading back to Rochester after Christmas.

Noel: *Shifts uncomfortably* I was, but then I needed a place to stay and Snow's best friend Savannah offered her spare room to me. I don't know why, she didn't know me from Adam, but it was very kind of her. Anyway, I couldn't stop thinking about December, Snowberry or Savannah after I returned to Rochester. Something was telling me I needed to go there to stay, not just to visit. It was quite unlike me I have to admit. I drove into town, bought a shut down restaurant and propositioned a woman all in the span of one day.

Tobi: *Raises eyebrow* Propositioned a woman? That sounds worthy of a read right there.

Noel: *Snort* It sounds far more studly than it was, actually. She needed help and I had the capacity to offer it, so I did.

Tobi: I don't think it's a bad thing to follow your gut. Sometimes those things we can't get out of our head are the ideas and plans that change our life, sometimes good and sometimes bad, but I'm betting this time it was good.

Noel: In this case it was good and bad. Savannah has been through so much I had no idea about until I got to know her better. I had a decision to make and I made it with the help of an angel. Once I made it felt relief that I was following the path He wanted me to follow, that made everything else that happened easier to deal with.

Tobi: An angel? That sounds intriguing.

Noel: *Shaking head* You should have been me waking up from that dream! I wondered if the white coats were going to come and haul me away or if I was even awake. It took a lot of coffee that morning to convince myself it was real, but I truly believe it was. I guess Savannah did too because when I told her she didn't tell me I was crazy and ask me to leave.

Tobi: *Laughing* I'm glad she didn't tell you to leave, because we just met you and I'm sure we will learn a lot about you in Noel's Hart. Maybe a little bit more about December too?

Noel: *Grinning* Yes! There is a lot to learn about the Kiss twins. I regret the years December and I spent apart and the pain I caused her. I know she has forgiven me, but I'm not sure I can ever forgive myself. I didn't do right by her. She was always my other half and I missed her so much those eight years we were apart. I didn't realize until Jay showed up in my cafe just how much was missing in my life because she wasn't part of it. I wanted to move to Snowberry so I could be there when my niece or nephew is born and be part of my sister's life again. 

Tobi: Whoa, niece or nephew? *Raises eyebrow high*

Noel: *Laughing* No, there is no baby yet, but someday there will be. Sorry to get your hopes up!

Tobi: *Sigh* Durn, I'm looking forward to all kinds of new babies in Snowberry! Snow and Dully's will be here soon and then I'm hoping a little December or Jay, and then, maybe?????

Noel:  Oh no, I'm not saying a word. No way, no how! 

Tobi:*Raises brow*

Noel: *Laughing* You do have a way about you, Tobi. I could tell you, but then what fun would it be to read Savannah's story? Nope, you will have to wait. 

Tobi: *Sigh* Okay, I'll be good, but not because I want to be. Before you go did you bring me anything to share with my readers?

Noel: Of course, Jay gave me a thorough lesson on what I needed before I came to visit.

Tobi: Yeesh, that makes me sound like a real hard nose.

Noel: *Laughing* No, not at all. It makes you a sucker for a great story, so I brought you one. Well, an excerpt anyway. This is the first time I saw Savannah again after I got back to Snowberry. It broke my heart, but definitely gave me the ammunition to stay and stick my nose in where it didn't belong. 

Tobi: Awwwww, I'm very glad you did and I know Savannah is too. Thanks for stopping by today and sharing this excerpt with my readers. I know they are going to fall in love with you and Savannah's story the same way they did with December and Jay. *Rustles around in pocket and hands over a twenty* Can you make sure Jay gets that pizza I promised him?

Noel: *Laughing* Keep the money Tobi, this pizza is on me. You might need that twenty to order pizza for your kids once you start Noel's Hart! Thanks for letting me sit in the Hottie McTottie Hot Seat today and the next time you're in Snowberry, stop by for a December Morning, on the house.

Tobi: Sounds great, Noel. Thanks for coming!

Excerpt of Noel's Hart:

I climbed out of the truck, my long legs stretching to the ground until my loafers hit the pavement. I locked the door and strode across the street, stepping onto the curb, and almost slipping on a patch of ice. “Grrrr, I hate dress shoes.” I muttered, as I straightened my suit jacket. I also hate suits, but sometimes they’re a necessity.

The only guy I’ve seen pull off a well cut suit lately was December’s husband, Jay. Now that guy can wear a suit. My skinny, string bean physique always makes me look like I’m drowning in pinstripes. I definitely preferred jeans and a flannel shirt to this any day. I stopped in front of Savannah’s Flower Emporium and took a deep breath. I haven’t seen her since Christmas Day, but sent her a few texts to check on her. She always assured me she was fine, but I knew she wasn’t. It only took one look at her face to see she was far from fine, but I prayed she had someone found some relief from her pain.

I pulled the door open and the smell of fresh roses, carnations and violets hit me in the face. I took a long deep breath of the fragrant petals, surprised by how it suddenly felt like spring in the middle of winter. I made a mental note to make sure I kept fresh flowers in my café during the winter. I grinned. Guess I knew just the person to get them from.

The door closed behind me, but I didn’t see Savannah anywhere. I waited by the counter for a few moments, but when she didn’t come out, I walked towards the backroom where she cuts and sorts flowers, and does paperwork.

“Savannah? Are you here?” I called, so I didn’t scare her if she just hadn’t heard the bell. I peeked in the open door and she had her back to me, wiping her face. “Savannah, are you okay?”

She nodded, wiping her hands on her apron. “Hi Noel, I wasn’t expecting you today.”

My eyes drifted to the desk where there was paperwork spread out and the computer that now had a black screen. She still hadn’t turned to me, so I walked in and put my hand on her shoulder until she did.

My eyes took in the sight before me. She was wearing one of her signature aprons, lions stalking prey, but today it wasn’t covered in flower petals and stems like usual. It was dry, but her face wasn’t. Her face was red, her eyes watery, and the right side of her face was pulled back in an unnatural position.

“Do you need help?” I asked quickly, worried she might collapse again like Christmas Eve.

She shook her head and took a shaky breath, “No,” her hand went to the side of her face to cover it, “everything is fine. I didn’t hear the bell. It’s nice to see you. What are you doing here?”

She ducked her head and tried to get around me, but I stayed rooted, so she couldn’t get by. “Take a minute and get yourself together, honey. There’s no one out there.” She nodded her head quickly, but kept her eyes pointed to the ground. “I brought you some coffee.” I told her, holding the cup out. She took it and whispered thank you.

Either she was lying to me about her face or something bad had just happened, because I could hear the tears in her voice. I knelt down on the floor, looking up at her under her long auburn hair. “Is it just one of those days where you could use a hug?”

“I suppose it would be, if I had someone to hug.” She said sadly.

I stood and took the cup from her hand, tugging her over into my arms. “You can hug me.” I assured her, feeling her slip her arms around my waist. At just a hair over five feet tall her head barely reached the middle of my chest, but I liked how easily it nestled there. “I’m sorry you’re having a hard day. Is there anything I can do?”
She sighed and shook her head no, so I tucked her hair behind her ear and tried to comfort her the only way I knew how. “Whatever it is, it will be okay. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but it will.” I promised.....

Bio: Katie Mettner grew up in Eau Claire, Wisconsin and moved to the Northwoods where she now resides with her husband and three children. Katie writes inspirational romance and is the author of The Sugar Series, The Northern Lights Series and the Snowberry Holiday Series. Her stories are a reflection of her love for family, intricately woven with life experience. When the gales of November blow early you can find her at the computer with a cup of joe working on her next adventure.

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Thursday, December 4, 2014

Mr. Good Enough - Jamie Farrell

Maddie Mason isn’t desperate. She’s simply tired of waiting for the universe to deliver her Mr. Perfect. So she’s turning to the dating website she created,, to finally find her future. 

Online matchmaking is perfect for Maddie, because: 
A) History has proven she’s a poor judge of decent husband material. 
B) The dating pool in her crumbling little hometown is all but dried up. 
C) She wants babies. 

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Teen Tuesday/Never Forgotten - Kelly Risser

YA Paranormal Romance
One minute Meara Quinn is making plans for the summer before her senior year. The next she finds out that her mother's cancer has returned and they're moving away from the only home she's ever known. Every day becomes a struggle as Meara tries to cope with her mother's illness while being forced to move to another country to live with grandparents who are strangers. 

Add weird visions of a father who was absent her entire life and top it all off with one whopping secret that everyone seems bent on keeping from her, and Meara has the perfect ingredients for a major melt down. The only things keeping her from coming unglued are some new friends and Evan—the son of her mother's childhood friend—who seems to know Meara almost better than she knows herself. 

Together with Evan and her friends, Meara embarks on a new journey to unlock the secrets that will not only tell Meara who she is, but what she is.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Sweet Tea & Chocolate Cake 10 Year Anniversary Luncheon Recap

Wow, wow, wow!  
I went to my first Big Author Event November 8th in Augusta, GA!
Sweet Tea & Chocolate Cake Author Reader Luncheon!
Mom and I loaded up, dropped my boys at my SIL's and we were off for a girls weekend!
We got down in time for the dinner out and we got to sit with +Tonya Kappes, her mom, her bff Lisa and fellow reader Heather!  It was so fun getting to know everyone in person and hanging out!
Here are a few pics from the evening!

Here's the link for Tonya's Amazon and B&N

We woke up and hit the breakfast buffet and I found….
With Sugar Free syrups!  Yes, I drank about $30 worth of Starbucks that weekend! (at least)

About 11:30 was a wonderful luncheon.  We were at Tonya Kappes' table and had a blast!
Tonya made each of us wonderful gifts and our hostess from the STACC book club Anu made a beautiful centerpiece with jewelry inspired by Tonya's book Carpe Bead 'Em.

After the luncheon and speakers Dianna Love and Tonya Kappes!!!  I love hearing their stories and learning new things! <3

After we got to meet and buy signed books by the authors that each had their own tables
Including +Jocie McKade+Nancy Naigle, K.D. Wood, +Jodi Vaughn+Larissa Reinhart+Hildie McQueen (whose book club hosted the luncheon), +Linda Joyce+Jordan K Rose, Jessica Hawke, Melissa Klein and SO many more!

Selfie with Tonya

Jocie McKade <3

Nancy Naigle <3
My badge with a witch hat from Tonya!
My books

Everyone I met was super sweet and I believe everyone was so excited to be there and meet and greet.
Again, I wish I had thought to take more pics.  The next event I go to I'll do much better!  

Links for all the authors listed that I met!

KD Wood  Amazon  B&N
Melissa Klein Amazon  B&N
Jocie McKade  Amazon  B&N
Nancy Naigle  Amazon  B&N
Jordan K Rose  Amazon   B&N
Larissa Reinhart  Amazon  B&N
Dianna Love  Amazon   B&N
Jessica Hawke Amazon  B&N
Jodi Vaughn  Amazon  B&N
Linda Joyce  Amazon   B&N
Tonya Kappes  Amazon   B&N

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Hottie McTottie Monday/Sugar's Faith - Katie Mettner

Happy Hottie McTottie Monday!
Yes, I know it's no longer Monday but I lost my computer charger and my mind but,
today I'm featuring the 4th book in the epic Sugar Series, Sugar's Faith!
This series is filled with sexy Hottie McTotties!

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 

When Donovan Walsh comforts his wife with the words, Níl aon suáilce gan a duáilce féin, there are no unmixed blessings in life, he had no way of knowing how quickly he would live those words. While visiting Ireland, Sugar and Van stay in a familiar place. A place filled with the ghosts and lies of his past. Stumbling through the deception of his early life Van waltzes dangerously close to losing his future. Will a voice from the past be the one to give him the answers, or will he find them in the blue eyes of his forever love? 

As the ice melts on Lake Superior, Sugar and Van dance together to find hope and love through Faith… 

Donovan Walsh and I are good friends and I was able to convince this Hottie McTottie to come back and tell me what's changed in his life this last year.

Tobi: Welcome back to Forget The Housework, Van! Do you have your coffee and are you ready to chat?

Van: Hi, Tobi, thanks for having me back! I have my coffee, but don't tell my wife. She's a little touchy about only getting one cup of coffee a day. 

Tobi: *Gasp* Is her coffeebone broken? One cup a day is unheard of for her!

Van: *Laughing* No her coffeebone isn't broken, but they say too much coffee is bad for the baby.

Tobi: *Squeal* Baby!? You're having a baby????

Van: Yes! Imagine my surprise when she told me one morning standing out on that pier. With the words, "you're going to be a daddy" she brought me to my knees. I've wanted to hear those words for so long, and now I'm about to be a granddaddy and a daddy.

Tobi: Congratulations, Van! And please, pass my congratulations on to Sugar as well. I can't imagine how surprised you were first to find out Lillie was pregnant and then Sugar, but you kinda already are a daddy.

Van: *Shrugs shoulder* Yes, I already raised Lillie, and she calls me dad, but I don't know. This feels different. I can't explain it very well, but every time I look at Tula now, I want to cry. She has given me so much and changed my world so completely in the last year. Now she's doing it again. 

Tobi: Sugar might say the same about you, only she would actually cry. 

Van: *Snort* Fair play! She always says I was the one that saved her, but she really has no idea how lost I was on November first last year. I was suddenly alone again, after all those years with Lillie, and adrift. I agreed to go to Duluth just to get out of my lonely apartment. I see now He was letting me walk through that so I would find my way to her.

Tobi: Truly a case of the Lord working in mysterious ways. My favorite memory of the first part of your story is when Sugar opened the door and saw you standing there. It was like she knew instantly she just found her soulmate. 

Van: She was so beautiful that day. Oh, you could see she was scared to death of me being in her space, but I tried to put her at ease. That ended when I spent the first night lying awake listening to her cry out from her room, all night. At about two am. when I was begging God to comfort her, I realized that's why I was there. I was there to protect her and somehow comfort her. From that moment on I was compelled prove that to her.

Tobi: *Heart melts* You're so romantic. 

Van: I've heard that a few times. Tula says its not a bad thing, but even if it was it isn't something I can change. Maybe it was raising a girl by myself for so many years. I never wanted to do anything that would hurt her. It was my job to protect her from pain. I guess it just added another layer to who I am. 

Tobi: *Laughing* No it's not a bad thing at all! When your story ended last time you and Sugar were headed to Ireland. Did you go? How was it? Just like you remembered? Did you enjoy a well poured glass of black stuff finally?

Van: *Grinning* Yes, life changing, yes, and yes finally! I probably had way too much black stuff, but it's just not the same here in the States. We drink it for breakfast, lunch and supper. We even cook with it. It's like milk here in the US, it's always in your fridge. 

Tobi: Life changing? I was going to ask you about all the things you did in Ireland, but your answer makes me wonder. The last time Sugar was here she told me she was looking forward to getting to know you on a whole new level, do you think that happened?

Van: You ain't codding...

Tobi: *Leans in* That's a loaded answer. Did something happen in Ireland, Van? I don't mean to pry, but you seem sad suddenly.

Van: Ireland was filled with ghosts and lies of my past, Tobi. I nearly lost my beautiful wife and child when I lost track of what's important. The things that happened were life changing, for both of us, but after everything we went through, and as much of a jackarse as I was to her, do you know what she told me? 

Tobi:*Shakes head no*

Van: She told me that when I was at my lowest, and thought all hope was lost, was when she had the most faith in me. She said I needed to go through all of that just to discover what my real gift in life is. 

Tobi: *Nods head* That sounds like Sugar. She's faith, love and hope all wrapped up in one beautiful package, to quote you. Do you think what she said was true?

Van: *Sighs with laughter* Oh, she was so right. I think it's why I picked this particular part of the story to share with your readers today. It was so easy for me to know without a question in my mind what her gifts are, but it was a lot harder for me to figure out mine. Well, the truth is, it really wasn't that hard. The hard part was for me to accept it.

Tobi: We all have gifts that He gives us, I agree. I think I know what your gift is, but I would love to hear what you decided. 

Van: *Whispers in Tobi's ear* Were you right?

Tobi: YES!

Van: *Laughing* See, everyone but me seemed to know what it was. I can tell you what your gift is.

Tobi: *Eyebrows up* Really? You know what my gift is?

Van: Yup, it's easy because I've already experienced it in just the short few minutes we've been talking. You're a listener and comforter. You know how to put people at ease, shore them up and encourage them all at the same time. You aren't condescending or fake, and you put your whole self into every encounter you have, even when you know sometimes people won't treat you with the same respect. 

Tobi: Eh, I don't know about that. I guess maybe. I never really thought about it much.

Van: *Chuckles* Eie, my lassie, ya be a special one. Don't ever change.

Tobi: Scouts honor, I'll stay true to who I am as long as you do too. I know your life is about to change so much in the next few months, though.

Van: *Winks* You ain't codding and I've never been more excited. My two girls are carrying the future generation of Walsh's, at the same time. In the not so distant future I'll be holding my child and grandchild in my arms, at the same time. I'll be a very happy man. Thanks for having me back today to visit, Tobi. I hope you fall in love with Faith the same way we have. 

Tobi: I'll tell you my secret now, I already have. *Wink wink* Before you go why don't you introduce the excerpt a little more to my readers, it's the first time we've ever gotten to hear your inner thoughts. 

Van: You betcha *chuckling, the northerners are rubbing off on me* This is an excerpt from our plane ride to Ireland. Tula was sleeping and I was trying to process the bombshell she had dropped on me earlier in the day. Amazing how the word 'daddy' can change your entire life the moment it's said. 

Tobi: You ain't codding! Thanks for stopping by Van. I always enjoy sharing a cup of coffee with you. *Claps hands* Okay, without further adieu I give you Sugar's Faith.

Van and Finn 2 months


A daddy. I stroked her arm as she shifted in her sleep until she settled her short leg between mine. When she tucked her right leg over my knee I cupped it gently with my hand, until she was comfortable and breathing evenly again. It was something I’ve done hundreds of times over the last year and it spoke volumes about how our relationship has evolved. When I first met her a year ago she couldn’t even tell me she was an amputee. She tried to hide it, to convince me she was just like every other woman.

The fact was I already knew she wasn’t. She was three times the woman of any I ever met, and when Jesse told me the truth I was stunned silent. Part of me suspected to a point she had a physical problem, and the cop in me at the time was screaming to call her on it. It was the man in me who couldn’t. When I look at her it’s the first thing I see, because for me it is the greatest part of her. She always cringes when I say that, but it’s how I feel. It’s the part of her she has overcome, not just physically, but emotionally. That night she lost the three most important people in her life, and her leg. Most people would have thrown in the towel, but not Tula. Even when she had every right to be angry and jaded about life, she just picked herself up and kept going.

I know she’s gone through some dark valleys. She’s told me just how hard it was for her to get where she is today, and I’ve experienced some of it firsthand. She was so broken when I first met her she was like an orphan, so devoid of love she didn’t know how to let her defenses down, and accept it.

I pulled her closer to me and rested my hand on her belly, closing my eyes, not that I was going to sleep any time soon. That one word had been running through my mind since she stood on the pier, the sun behind her, listening to her tell me my greatest wish was coming true. I was going to be a daddy. After our dance last night I honestly didn’t think I could love her more. I don’t know how she kept it together last night, knowing what she knew, going out there and dancing that kind of dance. But that is the essence of who she is. Grace under fire, with the courage to shut out all the other pressures and let the world see her soul. She floated in my arms last night, something I know is beyond difficult as an amputee, but when you’re born with a gift there is little you can’t overcome.

For Tula one of her gifts is dance. I can dance, but she has to dance to breathe. It’s something I’ve never experienced before in my life, and what left me so stymied the last few months. For the first time she struggled with putting aside all of the pressures from society, to do what her heart told her to do. That’s her real gift, her giving, loving, heart that has no end, even if she doesn’t realize it. I know it isn’t all that farfetched to say I’m partly to blame for all her indecision lately. Not because I don’t support her, but because we have already been through so many changes already. How could she ask me to begin another? Once she understood I wanted her to do what makes her happy she finally accepted that sharing her gift is what she is meant to do. I know without reservation that’s why she was left here that night. She simply had too many lives left to change. Mine, Lillie’s, Max’s, Nat’s and Maggie’s, just to name a few.

Sitting there this morning with my daughter on one side, and my wife on the other, both carrying my future left me short of breath. Raising Lillie was kind of thrust upon me, and I didn't have fatherly feelings for her right away. I loved her instantly, but first as a caretaker and protector, and then as a dad. I convinced myself it would be much the same way when I became a dad again, but I was so wrong. The words had barely left her lips and I was on the ground, my legs collapsing under me at the thought. This time it was instant love for a person I hadn’t even met. Most would say I'm far too protective of my women, but I don’t see that as a bad thing. I give them all the room they want to spread their wings and fly, but they also know they can run back to me for protection, and security. I never had a father, so when I was charged with raising Lillie I decided that’s the kind of father I would be. Turns out I’m not a very good father, but I do think I’m really good daddy. I guess some men would say there is no difference, but I know the truth. When I was growing up I knew about my father, the man who had helped create me, but that was all I ever knew of him. When I was raising Lillie she told people I was her ‘daddy’. I guess the difference is love.

 First thoughts after…
A perfect ending to a wonderful series.

How distracted did I get?

Sugar's Faith is an amazing conclusion to an awesome series.  Faith, who doesn't struggle with it at some point?  This story is about a husband/father to be struggling to keep his faith and deal with the mysteries from his past.  Van has been one of my favorite characters for a while now.  I felt for him as the story flew by though at times I wanted to say what the heck is wrong with you????  Once again Katie Mettner brings it home with a story that's not all rainbows and butterflies but deals with struggles and doubts many of us have in life, our relationships with loved ones and our relationship with God.  Doubt happens, faith waivers but LOVE prevails.  
I give Sugar's Faith

5 Baskets!!!