Category Archives: Books by Kayce Lassiter

Loons of a Feather (A Delta Jane Novel) by Kayce Lassiter

Loons of a Feather (A Delta Jane Novel), kayce LassiterLoons of a Feather (A Delta Jane Novel)

There are two kinds of matches in life—the kind humans make on their own, which succeed or fail depending on how much work they put into the relationship, and the “made in Heaven” kind that are especially blessed to last a lifetime. Matches made in Heaven are the fulfillment of a special blessing the creator has bestowed on a family line because of some great service or noble deed performed by an ancestor. These matches are heralded by the appearance of a glimmer, the spirit of an unborn child, to the mother’s godparent. The glimmers come to the godparent in the form of an aura attached to the collar of a dog that’s destined to remain with the family to look after the child. It’s the godparent’s responsibility to ensure the match is made before the glimmer fades and dies, taking with it the promise of true love and happily-ever-after.
Fairy Godmother, Delta Jane, is tasked with making a heaven-sent match for Shannon Burnett before the spirit of the child she is destined to have fades out of existence. Shannon, however, has a serious dilemma. She is attracted to two men—Michael Tanner who seems to be “another undependable cowboy”, and her high school boyfriend Jackson Miller who seems anxious to pick up where they left off twelve years before. It’s going to take all the resources and creativity Delta can muster to help Shannon grow beyond her past hurts to see these men for who they really are and make the right choice.

Will Shannon resolve her anger with her cowboy father? Is rancher Michael Tanner cut from the same cloth? Is Jackson Miller a better choice?
Who will Shannon choose? Will Delta Jane make the match before the glimmer is gone forever?

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5.0 out of 5 stars Three Cheers for Kayce Lassiter, February 6, 2014
By D M Warner (PHOENIX, AZ, US) – See all my reviews
Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
Hold on to your hats (or rather your helmets)! Kayce Lassiter has done something no one else has done…..in her book, Loons of a Feather, she has gifted us with Delta Jane, the hippest, most color-coordinated, craziest fairy godmother the world has ever known. And thank goodness! Delta Jane’s job is to bring people together so they can fall in love, if she can keep her brother, fairy godfather in training Bubba, from casting his own spells, which never seem to turn out right. In Loons of a Feather, which I loved (and you will, too), it’s Delta Jane’s job to bring together Shannon and Michael, two people who are obviously made for each other despite the various ups and downs of previous relationships and the fear of giving one’s heart once more. Loons of a Feather was a joy to read…I only wish I had a Delta Jane in my life. And I look forward to reading more stories about Ms. Lassiter’s feisty, spunky motorcycle-riding fairy godmother! Rev your engines and come join the fun!

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Katie’s Rock by Kayce Lassiter

katie's Rock, Kayce LassiterKatie’s Rock

Katie Schaffer is a single mother who slings drinks for a living. Her parents are gone, leaving her alone to care for her four year old son and a cocker spaniel with more energy than brains. When she meets Arizona ranchers Jake and David McAllister, the two handsome brothers both go into a full-court-press to win Katie’s affections. She quickly chooses Jake, but soon finds the road to love is a whole lot rockier than she expected. Jake is still raw from his divorce and is struggling with the pain of having his family torn apart. If she loses Jake, Katie stands to lose the entire McAllister family. Not only has she come to love them very much, but this would be the second family Katie has lost. Will Jake commit to Katie? Did Katie choose the wrong McAllister brother? If she loses Jake, can Katie survive losing her second family in three years?

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The Hinkiest Fairy Godmother in the Universe Rides Again!

The Hinkiest Fairy Godmother in the Universe Rides Again!

Delta Jane is back and Loons of a Feather is now a reality.  Yep, I made it…got it loaded, proofed, and released on time.  Was there really any doubt I would get there in time, you ask?  Well hell yes…it’s me, people!  Did you forget who you were talking to?  I’m the master procrastinator and there was much panic, many late nights, lots of bleary-eyed cursing sessions, and twisted belly pains.  But my new novel, Loons of a Feather, is finally available on Amazon.   Yeah…happy dancing across the pasture again.

Ya-Hoo!    (Throws cowgirl hat in the air!)

The official release date is tomorrow—February 1—but if you go to Amazon right this very minute, it’s up and available for order.  So pass the word!

Loons of a Feather_Small_200x323x300dpi

Tell your mother, your sister, your neighbor, your cousin, your niece, your grocery store clerk, your therapist, your gynecologist…tell ‘em all!!!  Wait…maybe not your therapist…Delta might not help your cause any.  🙂  And don’t forget to tell the guys too.  I was amazed at how many men bought a copy of Katie’s Rock and Midnight on the Double-B at my book signing last weekend…some as Valentine’s gifts for their sweetie and some as Valentine’s gifts for themselves.  So contrary to popular opinion, men DO buy romance…at least, the smart ones do.  🙂

Click Here To Buy Now

Don’t forget to tell me if you like the cover or not…I designed and created it myself and I’m not above begging shamelessly for compliments.  LOL

And if you click on the link at the top, it will take you straight to the book on Amazon where you can order it either in print or e-book format.  Yeah again!

Now…if you are local and looking for a print copy, I’d much rather you come see me next weekend at the Chocolate Affaire where I will also have Katie’s Rock and Midnight on the Double-B.  (Hint:  You can get the book cheaper there at conference pricing and without the shipping charges.  Who doesn’t love cheaper?!)

Midnight Cover_Small_206x320x300dpiIn case you haven’t yet read Midnight on the Double-B, follow this link to Amazon where the ebook version will be FREE…yes, FREE…for 3 days.  Pick up your e-book, read it next week, and if you love Delta, zoom back to Amazon for your copy of Loons of a Feather…or trot over to the Chocolate Affaire next weekend to get a signed copy from yours truly.  Remember, Midnight on the Double-B is a short story and a fast, easy read—and it’s the precursor to Loons of a Feather, which is Book One in the Delta Jane series.  So for those of you who wanted more of Delta…here she is.  I hope you enjoy her!!!

Click Here To Get Free E-book

zzz playfile mergedOh, one more thing—leave a comment here by midnight Saturday (2/1) for a chance to win a free copy of Loons of a Feather in ebook format.  So leave a comment and I will contact you when the winner has been drawn.  What could be better?  A cranky, hinky fairy godmother…and FREE.  Yeah, baby!

That’s my story, wahoo and wazoo, and I’m stickin’ to it.  Hang on tight now ‘cuz we’re gonna go real, real fast!

Love ya,

Kayce

Loons of a Feather is on its way!

Hi…it’s me, Kayce.  I know…….long time no talk here on the Butterscotch Martini Girls site, but we’ve got the band back together and we’re rolling into the new year with big plans.  So welcome…it’s good to be back!

And…in case you haven’t heard, I have a new release coming out February 1st.  Yeah!!!  The title is Loons of a Feather and it features my kick-ass fairy godmother Delta Jane.  She rides a Harley and she has a pair of lips tattoo’d on her ass–and she’s not afraid to use ’em.  She makes love matches and cleans up after her baby brother, Bubba Ray.  So if you enjoyed Midnight on the Double-B, ride along with Delta and Bubba Ray on their new adventure.  And here is a sample of what the cover will look like…

Master-Cover-eBook-Small

So…do you love it?  I do!!!  And just to toot my own horn, I built it myself…so if you hate it, don’t tell me.  There are times when remaining in the dark ain’t so bad.  LOL  On the other hand, if you L-O-V-E it, tell me, tell your mother, tell all your friends…and be sure to tell them they will be able to find it on Amazon.com when it’s released on February 1st. 

Now that we have that settled, here’s another excerpt for ya…hope you enjoy it.  And if you do and you’re local, be sure you plan to stop by the Romance Writers’ booth at the Glendale Chocolate Affaire on Friday evening (2/7) or Saturday/Sunday morning (2/8-2/9) and say “Hi” and pick up your signed copy…and be sure you bring enough cash for chocolate whatever you want.  The selection is decadent, to say the least.

That’s my story, fun and fantastical, and I’m stickin’ to it.  Hang on tight now ‘cuz we’re gonna go real, real fast!

 Love ya,  Kayce

 Loons of a Feather  (excerpt…)

Across the street, in the shadows of a recessed storefront, Delta stood with Bubba Ray and Mac at her side.  She’d watched Shannon and Jackson leave the restaurant and round the corner earlier.  Now she waited for Michael to leave as she worked on another plan. 

With a grunt of frustration, she spoke to her brother.  “Bubba Ray, these people are gonna be the death of me.  Why the hell can’t they just roll with the program and realize they can’t make up their own rules?  Destiny has its own plan and so do I.  But they keep screwing everything up.  Just when I get the right two together, another one comes along and horns in.  I’d hate to have to put one of them in the hospital, but it’s damn tempting.”

Bubba Ray stared at her, horror written all over his cherubic face while Mac whined and bumped her leg with his wet nose.

“Yeah, I know, Mac.  It was just a thought.  Guess that’s why they have me.  But I’d much rather be sitting somewhere having a cold beer than standing here in the dark thinking up ways to throw these two together.  Hell, I’ve spent the last two days running ridiculous errands for that tight-wad Fairy just to smooth his feathers out over the fifty thou I requisitioned to cover the damages.  Now I’ve got a cop to get rid of too.  Could these people be any more of a pain-in-the-ass?  And let’s don’t forget about the old bitch that’s rattling her sword over the stupid smoking cat.  I still don’t have a clue how I’m gonna make her go away.  Fairy boy says I can’t kill her off.  Hell, that’d not only fix this case, but it’d make me feel a damn sight better.  She’s really getting on my nerves.”

There was silence as Delta tilted her head and listened to a voice only she could hear.  A moment later, she looked straight up into the dark night sky and snapped, “Oh, shut up!  I’m working myself to the bone down here and I don’t need your smart remarks.  I know performance review time is coming up.  It’ll all be resolved by then.  Just you don’t worry about it.  How’d you get your batteries recharged so fast, anyway?  Don’t you need some bed rest or something?”

A moment later, she froze as her breath hitched in her chest.  The boss had never spoken out loud to her, always just a disembodied voice in her mind, so the soft, deep baritone voice that spoke out loud took her by surprise.  She looked right to see if Bubba Ray had heard it too.  His wide eyes told her he had.  Now, this was downright embarrassing.

“Holy shit, Fairy boy, you did not just proposition me!” 

He had.  The boss had never made any kind of off-color or suggestive remark to her, had never given her any indication he might be interested in her, although it wasn’t uncommon among the fairy god folk.  Working with love matches all day long could be rather…stimulating.  But inviting her to join him in his bed and “recharge his batteries” had proposition written all over it.  Unfortunately, it also had strategic parts of her body at full attention and nodding furious agreement.  It had been a long time.

What the…

Apparently, seven decades was too long for a fairy godmother to go without sex.  She’d have to find a way to remedy that, but not with the boss.

Delta’s brain was scrambled as she searched for some other explanation or some way out.  Bubba Ray was blushing furiously and staring at his feet, refusing to make eye contact.  Hell, even Mac wouldn’t look her in the eye.  What the hell was happening here?  Where’d that come from?  She was absolutely right about what the boss hinted at and she had to find a way to change the subject…fast.  This was downright embarrassing.

Then a thought occurred to her. 

Time to pick a fight. 

With a huff, she stabbed her fists on her hips and scowled skyward.  “Fairy boy, I wouldn’t recharge your batteries if you were the last stinking fairy in the universe.  You meddled with my case.  You threw Jackson in the middle of all this out of the clear blue without a single mention of him in the case recommendations.  You did it because you didn’t know what the hell you were doing and now you’re trying to distract me.  Well, it’s not gonna work.  I’m onto you.”

Again the soft baritone slid over her with the whisper of a soft sheet. 

“Of course I did it, but I knew exactly what I was doing.  You needed a challenge.”

“What?  Challenge?  Delta doubled up her fist and shook it at the sky as her heart fluttered in her chest.  “Why, you double-dealing, sneaky, soot-feathered…”

“You’ve been getting too comfortable in your current role.  It’s time you moved up to the next level and to do it, you need tougher assignments.  The big guy thinks you need more challenge, so I gave you some stretch goals.  Think of it as an…opportunity.”

“You’re damn straight I’ve been comfortable in my current role.  I’ve got it figured out now and I can work it in my sleep.  I don’t want to move up to the next level.  I don’t need any more headaches and I don’t want any more challenges.  I like it right where I am.  Don’t you go screwing up a good thing…and I can tell you where you can put your stretch goals and your opportunity if you need directions.”

The disembodied baritone voice chuckled.  “Well, they don’t call you Bitch Number Two for nothing, that’s for sure.  I always know I can count on you to liven up a boring day.”

Bitch Number Two?

Delta was stunned.  She’d always had top billing.  Who was poaching in her territory?  “What the hell are you talking about, you big flop-footed faggit?  Bitch Number Two?  Oh hell no!  I’m Queen Bitch and you damn well know it.”

“Not any more, you’re not.  After the stunt Bitzy pulled down in Florida, you’ve been bumped.  You’ve got to admit, an alligator in the punch bowl to break up the wrong wedding was a stroke of twisted genius.”

“Stroke of genius?  Are you kidding me?  She put two people in the hospital and almost blew her cover with that little stroke of twisted genius.  Shit!  You corporate types are all alike.  Doesn’t matter how many bodies you leave in your wake, as long as the case comes in on time and within budget.”

“Oh, not that tired old song and dance again,” quipped the fairy godfather.  “Give it a rest, Delta.  You’ll understand once you’ve moved to the next level.  Just hang in there, hag, and you’ll get up to speed yet.”

Delta’s temper blazed red-hot.  “Hag?  Who you callin’ Hag, you puffed up pile of horse-feathers!  And for your information, I am not moving up.  I like it here and you can’t make me do it.  So stick that in your pipe and smoke it!  Don’t you have some real work to do—like knitting a sweater for that ugly-ass bald cat of yours?”

Mac barked his agreement.

A split second later, there was a peal of thunder and lightning shot across the clear night sky.

Delta rolled her eyes and cackled as she shouted.  “Yeah, you talk tough for a guy in tights and wings.”  With a glance at Mac, she added, “Whose idea was it anyway to assign a Fairy in tights to the redneck task force?  The big guy must’ve been having a slow day.” 

Mac whined his agreement just as a louder, larger bolt of lightning shot across the sky and struck her Harley parked next to the building changing it into a moped.

Delta stared at the moped for a moment and then cursed under her breath, “Ass!”  With a wave of her fingers, the moped was restored to the Harley she rode in on.

Another bolt of lightning, the moped was back and the back tire was flat.

“Shit!”  Delta glared at the moped.  “I hate working with fairy godfathers.  They’re so damn temperamental.  You’d think after three hundred years, they’d have gotten past all the sensitivity crap.”

Camping again…just like I had good sense!

Hi, all!  Been a while…what cha all been up to?  Me?  Mostly just working my butt off to stay out of trouble.  Yep…some things are harder to do than others and some things never change.

Well, remember the camping story from last summer?  Yeah, I’m sure some of you do.  I’m still trying to live that one down.  And, as you’ve probably already figured out, I have not yet given up camping…but I’m now another story closer to it, I think.  You guessed it…went camping again this week and, as some predicted, my luck held true…total disaster.  Once again, God musta been having a slow week and needed a little entertainment…and he always knows right where to find me when he’s bored.  So, here’s my sad but true tale….

  As many of you already know, I have a passel of the most gorgeous, brilliant, talented grandsons a woman could ever hope for.  In fact, they’re all darn near perfect.  LOL  Anyway, I decided to take a couple of them camping for a few nights at my favorite camp spot…Woods Canyon Lake.  Yes, that is the same place I went last time…what’s your point?  Stop snickering…I haven’t even gotten to the good part yet!.

 They had been up north spending a few days with their grampa and I was going to pick them up from there on my way to the lake.  So the packing and prep fell to me to do alone.  Sigh…poor me!  Anyway, I worked most of the day on Wednesday and headed out right after I got off work to pick them up.  The plan was to be totally prepared with my list, all packed up in an orderly fashion,  and leave home by 2pm.  Reality was that my list never got completed so I was frantically stuffing last minute things in through the camper door to fall where they may in a jumbled heap, and I finally left town about 3:30pm.  Still a better start than some I’ve had in the past…so far, so good.

 I get the boys picked up from their grampa’s house and start up the hill.  Just outside Payson I remember what I forgot…the birthday cake.  One of the boys is turning 9 on this trip and there is no way I’m going to let him do it without a cake and a card, at least.  So it’s a quick trip into the Payson WalMart.  I send the boys off in one direction while I go in the other and sneak a birthday cake, card, and gift through checkout.  And true to form, I get the new girl…the checker who’s still worried about doing it right and hasn’t yet figured out that everyone who comes through her line is not her new best friend.  I wait patiently (well, almost) while she chats up the two families ahead of me and rings each and every item with slow deliberation…while she makes sure she gets everything folded just right and tucked into the bag in a neatly stacked fashion and that no bags are overloaded…while they chat about Aunt Mabel’s gallstones and Uncle Henry’s new false teeth (he needed new ones because the dog chewed up his old ones).  Honest, I did good…didn’t say anything, didn’t sigh and huff, didn’t roll my eyes…okay, maybe a little eye rolling.  But I was good, honest I was.  No one even saw the eye rolling.

   Finally, my turn comes and I try to look too busy rearranging all the “stuff” in my purse to chat.  Doesn’t work.  She just stops ringing things up and waits for me to free up so she can ask me how I’m doing.  Now, I’m not always the sharpest point on a needle, but I can tell immediately that there’s a “chat quotient” that’s required in order to get through this line.  So now I start talking really fast, hoping to get the chat out of the way quickly so I can get on my way…remember, I’ve still got a tent to pitch before it gets dark.  Even with a fast chat, I’m not gonna make it.  So I take a deep breath, suffer through the chat-fest, grab my bags, and make a run for the door as soon as she’s handed me my receipt.  Freedom!!!

 It’s now going on 7pm and the chances we’re gonna get that tent put up before dark are nil…now I’ve moved on and I’m praying I can at least get the lantern lit before complete dark falls.  This trip has now become all about flexibility and shifting goals.  Long story short, we get there and find a campsite that we can use for two nights.  We’d hoped to stay three, but it seems everyone else in the Valley of the Sun is also sick of the heat – so they’re ALL there to camp at the same time we are.  Okay, we’re flexible…we can shorten our trip to two nights…it’ll still be fun!

   Time to set up the tent.  Well, it’s an old tent and hasn’t been used since that fateful night last summer when I did a swan dive in front of the outhouse with my nightgown over my head.  And it would appear that it’s finally reached the end of its shelf-life.  The shock-cording in the pole sections is now all stretched out and getting the poles together while poking the little elastic string inside the ends takes a long time.  Between that and the fact that I forgot you have to do one pole at a time, each one stringing over the top of the last…well, let’s just say it took us almost three hours (in the dark) to set up this stinking tent.  Then there were air mattresses to fill and bedding to unload.  The boys were real troopers and did everything I asked without complaint…did I mention they’re almost perfect?  However, I’m sure the other campers were wishing we’d had a flat tire somewhere down the mountain.

 But we did get the tent up finally and our beds were warm and comfy when we finally crawled into them sometime around midnight.  Woo Hoo!  We were now officially camping!!!  As I lay there drifting off to sleep, I resolved that this would be my last trip in this old tent…when I got it home, it was going into the dumpster and a new tent might be my Christmas present to myself this year.  After all, the tree’s still up.  I could watch for a sale, buy it, stick it under the tree and I’d be ready to go come Christmas…I had my plan.  Who needs a stinking list?

 The next day dawned early but we chose to sleep late.  With all in agreement, it was  w-o-n-d-e-r-f-u-l…well, except for the three trips to the outhouse which was a very long ways away.  Guess all that water I drank on the way up the mountain wasn’t my best idea.  I’m thinking a porta potty may also end up under that tree this year!

 After breakfast, we grabbed our fishing poles and drove down to the lake with visions of a dozen trout baking in tin foil over an open fire for dinner.  I had the butter and lemon all ready in the ice chest.  However, those trout in that lake apparently had visions of seeing another day, so they chose to forego the pleasure of “taking the bait”, so to speak, and we ended up coming back to camp empty-handed.  Well, except for the rainbow power bait, the salmon eggs, and the worms we had purchased at the lake store.  Good thing we had some steaks I’d brought along just in case or those worms mighta been dinner.  Hey, it’s not my first fishing trip.

 So come late afternoon, we lit a big fire and burned the wood down to coals and cooked our steaks.  After dinner, we worked like hell to light the birthday candles in the wind that was starting to kick up, we sang happy birthday in triple-time (before the candles blew out), and we ate cake while my grandson opened his birthday present.  It was fun.  In fact, it was so much fun that we were a bit slow to notice the clouds that were gathering overhead.  Uh-oh.  With the first clap of thunder, we all jumped into action.  Food went into garbage bags and ice chests, bags were thrown into the back of the truck, we grabbed the playing cards and our books, and jumped into the tent about 15 seconds after the rain started.  Damp…not wet…got air mattresses and lots of blankets and sleeping bags…life is still good!

 A few minutes later, as we’re getting situated in the tent, the birthday boy asks, “Gramma, does this tent leak?”

 “Nah.  It’s dry as a bone,” I replied.  “We’ll be fine.”

 He casts me a skeptical look as he rubs the top of his head.  “Oh.  Because I thought I felt a drop of water.”

 I look up just to make sure.  Nothing.  I can see water drops on the top of the rain fly, but nothing dripping in.  We’re fine.  “Nope…just your imagination.  We’re good.”

 He nods and we set about trying to decide what we want to do while we wait in the tent.

 About five minutes later, birthday boy asks again, “Gramma, you sure this tent doesn’t leak?  I thought I felt another drop.”

 “Nah…stop worrying.  The only time I’ve ever had a problem was when I was up here with your folks a long time ago and it was pouring then.  As long as the rain stays light, we’ll be just fine.”

 Now, this is where things start to go wrong.  Yeah, you knew it would because this is my story…and it did…it went wrong…it went very, very wrong.  I had no sooner finished that statement…I mean, it was not even five seconds later that there was a huge clap of thunder and the noise immediately became deafening with the downpour that ensued.  The three of us went dead silent and just stared at each other as we listened to the rain come beating down.  I looked up toward the heavens and rolled my eyes and said, “Very funny.

  Very funny.” This sent both grandsons into fits of laughter and they fell back on their mattresses in utter hysteria.  Suddenly, the older grandson sits bolt upright and wipes his face.  “Gramma, this tent is leaking.  My bed’s wet and water just dropped on my face.”

 Staring at the water trickling down his face, I could no longer ignore the fact that…yes, the tent was leaking.  It was leaking like a sieve!  As we started to look around in earnest, we realized water was not only leaking in through the roof…somehow, somewhere…it was also dripping in through the bottoms of the windows and soaking in at the base of the tent.  Another 10 minutes and we’d be floating…especially since we’d opted to forego the tent stakes the night before.

 “Time to move!”  I ordered and everyone went into action.  We initially intended just to get into the truck with our bedding to keep it (and us) from getting any wetter.  But as soon as we stepped outside the tent and I saw how black the sky was, I knew we were in for a long, rainy night.  “Boys, we’re gonna have to pack up and head home.”  I expected an argument, but apparently they were just as convinced as I that sleeping in a floating tent was a bad idea.

 “Okay, gramma, what do you want us to do?”  Was the reply in stereo.

 I put one kid in the cab of the truck and one kid in the camper to stack and stow gear as I ran back and forth bringing stuff out of the tent and handing it to one kid or the other.  Once everything was loaded, I stood up under the raised camper window, soaked to the bone and shivering, as I stared at the tent and wondered how the heck I was going to get that big old sucker down in this pouring rain.  Maybe there would be a break in the rain or at least a slowing where I could actually see what I was doing.  NOT.  So after about five minutes or so of shivering under that raised window, I finally ran out to the tent and started pulling the poles out of their holders.  I managed to get them loosened enough to drop the tent to the ground, but when I tried to get the poles to slide out of the little sleeves, nothing would budge.  The nylon was so wet that it was plastered to the poles and nothing would push through from any direction.  As I frantically worked the poles, they started to break down inside the sleeves and I now had a series of short poles stuck inside these long sleeves.  I gave up and ran to the truck, jumping into the driver’s seat.  As I sat there shivering and trying to decide what to do, I grabbed the towels I’d thought to buy at WalMart and wrapped one around my head and one around my body, trying to hold onto some body heat.  I was cold to the bone.

 The boys sat quietly, just staring out the windows at the tent.  Finally, the older one asked, “Gramma, are you okay?”  At which point, I just started laughing hysterically and within seconds, we were all laughing like we’d lost our minds.Another grand adventure!

 We waited about a half hour with no break or easing in the rain before I made the executive decision that we were leaving the tent right where it sat…which made the boys absolutely roll with laughter.  One thing’s for sure…when I die one day, there will be plenty of fun stories to tell at my funeral.

 Now the last dilemma I was faced with was how to get dry and stop the shivering so I didn’t catch pneumonia.  All of our clothes were either wet or packed at the very bottom of all that crap in the camper.  No way was I gonna get to it without unpacking the camper…and that wasn’t happening.  Finally, it dawned on me that my sleep shirt (translation:  nightgown) had been rolled into my sleeping bag…it might still be there in the back seat.  So we started digging and came up with the nightgown.  At the time, the irony escaped me but as I write this, I realize this was the very same nightgown (or sleep shirt) that I was wearing the last time I went camping.  Wonder if there’s some sort of spell on it.  I might have to burn that damn thing…or at least avoid taking it camping again.

Within minutes, I was out of my wet shirt and bra, and into my sleep shirt.  My shorts were wet around the bottoms, but not enough to keep me chilled.  With the dry nightgown on and the heater cranked up, I was warming up nicely as we pulled away from camp, leaving behind that old albatross of a tent, two bags of wet firewood, and a 2-gallon jug of water I refused to go back out into the rain to get.  Life was good once again!

 Until…we got down off the mountain and back to Camp Verde.  You see, this was not just an isolated rain storm.  This was one of the two days a year where it rains over the entire state of Arizona…and we chose that exact time to go camping…who woulda thunk it?  Okay, don’t be rude!  The drive from campsite to front door shouldn’t have taken more than 2-1/2 hours or so.  But this night, with the downpour and all of the steam coming up off the roads, the going was very slow.  So about 3 hours out of camp, I’m starting to squirm in my seat with the need to pee.  The boys were no problem.  Pull over next to a low bush, they hop out and take care of business, and we’re good to go.  But an old broad in a nightgown peeing at the side of the road…well, that’s tougher to ignore…and not gonna happen.

   By the time we hit Cordes Junction, it’s not a choice any more.  Either we stop at the truck stop and I go inside and take care of business…or that tent’s gonna look like a high, dry spot.  The birthday boy is sound asleep by this time, so I only have one grandson laughing his butt off as I screw up the courage to go inside.  I grab my purse and hold it in front of me, wishing I’d brought a much, much bigger purse (for coverage), and I walk into the little store at the well-lit truck stop, looking for all the world like I knew exactly what I was doing.  I walked straight to the bathroom and winced as I saw a note on the door indicating it was “for customer use only”.  Now the guilt begins.  I do my business (with tremendous relief) and then I allow my guilt to propel me out into the store itself where the clerk and no less than 3 other customers proceed to openly stare at me.  I throw my shoulders back and hold my head up high as I clutch my purse to my chest to hide the fact that I am wearing no bra under my nightgown…as I proceed to grab the closest bag of chips and head to the register.  The clerk, bless his heart, tried valiantly not to continue to stare.  In fact, he seemed totally unable to make eye contact at all as he rung up my purchase, took my money, and handed me my change.

   Back in the truck, my oldest grandson is almost in tears over witnessing the scene inside the store.  Which tells me I must be the “fun” gramma…at least, that’s the story I’m going with.  LOL

 Well, we made it home that night and for the second night in a row, managed to crawl into nice, warm beds (dry beds) at about midnight.  Life was still good.  However…the next morning, about 7am, I wake to the sound of someone in my room.  I roll over with one eye open and it’s birthday boy standing next to my bed.  “Hey, bud, you up already?” I ask.

 He nods.  “Gramma, something bit me when I tried to put my pants on.”

 I’m awake now.  “Something bit you?  What bit you?”

 “I don’t know, but it really hurts.”  He begins to cry.

 Oh crap!  I hop out of bed and we head back to the boys’ room where I begin to shake out his jeans.  Within seconds, the offending creature makes his presence known.  Now, there’s no telling whether that scorpion found its way into my house (since I live in the country) or he hitched a ride all the way back from the lake with us in search of a dry spot to sleep.  But this does appear to be the camping trip from hell…the one that just won’t end.

 So…to make a longer story shorter, we call 911, the paramedics come and check out the kid, we take him to his doctor who gives him a shot and proclaims him to be fine, and we spend the rest of the day unpacking damp camping equipment and watching movies as birthday boy keeps ice on his poor leg.  (By the way, I just talked to him on the phone and he’s doing just fine…none the worse for the wear.)

 Well, that’s the tale of this year’s camping trip.  Stay tuned…I’m thinking about making it a yearly “event”…a trip and a blog…sort of a package deal…maybe some of you would like to come along next year…or maybe I should just try to figure out a way to get a travel trailer underneath that Christmas tree instead of a new tent and a port-a-potty.

 Well, that’s my story…and I’m sticking to it.  Hold on tight now, cuz’ we’re gonna go real, real fast!

 Love ya.

Kayce

Cavemen, Cover Models, Strangers and Boobs…It’s All Good!

Well, as you know if you’ve been following our blogs, most of the BMG’s are in Pittsburgh this week for the Romantic Times Conference.  We have been working our tails off doing promo, setup, tear-down, decorating, networking, workshops, and trying not to leave the hotel with an overstock of Buttershots.  Dirty job, but someone has to do it. 

Can you imagine…when we arrived the hotel had NO Buttershots.  What the hell were they thinking?  We made sure well in advance that it was specifically listed in the conference BDO, but someone apparently didn’t take it seriously enough.  You get six Butterscotch Martini Girls and enthusiastic readers who love to try new things all in the same spot with no Buttershots and…well, let’s just say it’s not pretty.  LOL  But we did manage to find some substitutions that got us through until the hotel realized we were dead serious and managed to finally get in a shipment of Buttershots.  The booze arrived on Thursday and this is Saturday so by now, we have ALL of the bartenders trained on the art of Butterscotch Martini-making.  Woo Hoo!!!

And yes, as Cassie mentioned yesterday, I am apparently still wearing a sign on my back that I can’t see.  My family used to tease me that it said, “If you’re weird, I’m in love,” implying that I attracted the strangest boyfriends.  And they were pretty much right at the time, as I generally managed to attract someone with either no job, no home, or no car…often, none of the above.  But I’m getting better…just, apparently, not completely free of the curse.

This time it happened yesterday morning in the restaurant.  I started out fairly safely when I joined Dani and Carol for breakfast.  They had arrived first and were almost finished when I joined them.  So halfway through my meal, they paid their bill and left me there alone to finish my coffee…here’s where it starts to get strange.

I’m sitting there finishing my coffee and a woman walks up to the table.  The restaurant isn’t really very crowded, so the tables around me are empty, which makes it fairly obvious that she’s there to talk to me.  I look up and she’s just standing there staring at my 3 empty chairs.  I’m wondering if she wants to borrow one and why when I smile and say, “Hi.”

She replies, “Hello,” as she stands there smiling and glancing at my chairs.

I wait.

Finally, she says, “I’m just looking around for a perfect stranger to sit with.”

Okay, I’ve never heard that one before…so I stare for a minute trying to figure out if this one just got off the short bus.  She looks safe enough.  I kind of squinch up my eyes and repeat after her, “You’re looking for a perfect stranger to sit with?”

She nods and smiles, but doesn’t offer any more information.

Okay, my “weirdo alarm” is starting to honk, but I ignore it because I’m bound and determined to be polite to everyone.  So I gesture toward the chair and say, “Well, you’re welcome to sit with me if you’d like.  I’m not perfect, but I’m about as strange as they come.”

She visibly relaxes and plops into the chair.  “Thanks.”

Alrighty then…now, what to say to a woman who walks through restaurants alone in strange towns looking for perfect strangers to sit with?  I have no clue.  So I decide she’s the one looking for strangers…let her come up with a topic.  Fortunately, she had no problem doing just that.

As it turns out, we had a very fun chat and she turned out to be a lovely woman who is welcome to share my table any time.  Of course, next time I won’t be a stranger any more, so it might not work.  Anyway, in the end, we both met someone new, had an enjoyable cup of coffee/breakfast break, and did not have to sit at the table alone reading a book.  Woo Hoo…

Now, another great story is the boob tale…man, are there boobs at a romance writer’s conference!  Who knew?  But this tale starts with the costume contest the night of the Faery Ball when a woman showed up in an old time costume that looked like it might have come from a Renaissance Festival…and did she have some jugs on her!  The corset she was wearing pushed those puppies up until they were pointing straight out in front of her and they were flat on the bottom and very, very jiggly on top.  Then, to make matters even stranger, she stuck a long neck Bud bottle in between those tata’s and paraded across the stage and all through the ballroom like that. It was a hoot!

Later, some of us were sitting around in the room, rehashing the party and Carol made the mistake of saying she just couldn’t imagine the beer bottle between the boobs.  Well, long story short, I decided my boobs were just flexible enough (translation…floppy) that I could show her.  So I hoisted those puppies up and stuck a water bottle between them and, Thank God, it stayed in place.  Well…at least until I quit supporting the girls, at which time the water bottle shot across the room.

Oh, the hazards and sacrifices of a career in writing.  LOL  Oh, and there was one more piece of excitement that has Dani’s nose totally tweaked out of joint.  While she spent this entire evening cruising the hotel ballroom, stalking the hallways, peeking in elevators, trying to get a glimpse of Fabio and, possibly, have her picture taken with him…guess who passes him in the hallway to our room?  Yep…me.  So I drop my books in the room and hotfoot it back to the elevators where he gallantly holds the door for me and I get to ride the 17 floors back to the ballroom with the infamous Fabio.  And I must say, girls, that I was very surprised…he’s actually very good looking in person.  Very intense, very quiet, but actually gorgeous. 

So now I guess I’m going to have to sleep with one eye open all night so Dani doesn’t beat me to death in my sleep.  LOL  By the way, be sure to ask Kayla why her fairy wings owe me an engagement ring…you talk about hot wings!  That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it…hold on tight now, we’re gonna go real, real fast!

Love Ya,

Kayce

Talk about some hot biscuits!

Well, it’s no surprise to those of you who know me that I’ve just lived through another blog moment.  Oh, Duh!

I have a very sweet friend back in Tennessee who occasionally sends me things – just for no reason at all.  (Best kind of friend to have, huh?)  Well, the latest gift was a package of sweet cream butter and a jar of pickled beets.  YUM!  I love both items and the fact that they came from an Amish market makes them fabulous!!!  (Hear this last word with the Joanne Worley warble, will ya?)

Anyway, as some of you may know, I’m not exactly your basic domestic goddess…goddess, yes…domestic, no.  LOL  (My story…I get to tell it my way.)

Well, as I was saying…I received this fabulous sweet cream butter in the mail and was dying to taste it, but I didn’t have any bread.  So I made a mental note to stop at the store on my way home from the drugstore Monday evening.  Then I promptly forgot.  So Tuesday morning came and I was all set to try out my new butter…and no bread.  Crap!  Time to get creative…a little out of the box thinking and I’d be rolling that yummy, warm, melted butter on my tongue.  Hmmmm

After slamming through every cupboard in the kitchen, I finally homed in on a small (old) box of Bisquick in the refrigerator door.  Bisquick can’t go bad, can it?  Nah…my mouth begins to water.  So I get out a small bowl and the milk carton and I mix up enough batter for 2 biscuits.  The batter is just a bit odd looking once mixed up but, what the hell, no bugs.  All systems “Go”!  I’m going to couple the biscuits with some fried eggs…one of my very few specialties.  Mouth still watering.

This is where things started to go horribly wrong.  I had pre-heated the oven to 450 degrees (well, pretty close).  But the problem was, the handle is missing off the front of my oven door.  So I have to use a potholder (for traction) and a big ‘ol screwdriver to open the door.  I know…I know…two screws and the handle goes back in place…and I will whenever I find the damn handle.  Anyway, in the meantime, the potholder and screwdriver work just fine for the small amount of cooking I do (none, actually).

Well, I digress…anyway, after all the work it takes to pry the door open, I’m not gonna put myself through that again and risk breaking my stunning new nails.  So I search through the drawer for something long and sturdy enough to stick in the opening and keep the oven door propped open just a bit…not much, an inch or two at the most.  After all, it’s not like it’s rocket science.  Voile…I come up with a nice, sturdy wooden spoon.  Purrrrrfect!

So the door’s propped open, the biscuits are in the oven, and I’ve fried up two of the most perfect over medium eggs you’ve ever seen…yolk is runny, no snot in the whites, no lacy brown edges…sheer perfection.  So I put ‘em on a plate and turn a bowl upside down over the top to keep ‘em warm for the 1 or 2 minutes I have left on the biscuit clock.  Ten minutes later, the biscuits seem like they’re done in the middle, but they haven’t risen a whole lot and they’re still white on the outside and starting to form a crust.  Not good.  Okay, time for more out of the box thinking.  I crank the dial to broil and leave the door propped open with the wooden spoon.  Then I promptly forget all about the biscuits.  (Yes, old age is a curse…forget everything you’ve ever heard about growing old gracefully and plan to cut your birthday cake with a chainsaw…old age is NOT for sissies!)

So when I finally smell that sickly half-burnt smell coming from my oven, I panic.  I rush over to the oven, grab the handle of the wooden spoon and crank the door open, catching it in the oven mit.  Crap!  The damned wooden spoon is on fire!  How did that happen?  I’ve got a two inch flame leaping off the end of the spoon and all I can do is stand there and stare at it supidly.  I can’t get the wood to light on a campfire without gasoline to save my stinkin’ life, but prop the door to the stove open with a wooden spoon and poof…I’ve got fire.  How is that fair?

So I shake the spoon to extinguish the fire and throw it across the room into the sink.  I grab the pan with the oven mit and pull out 2 perfectly acceptable looking biscuits…not bad.  Obviously the smoke filling the kitchen is from the flaming spoon and not my precious biscuits.  Woo hoo…my mouth is watering again, albeit a little bit tainted by the smell/odor of burnt wood.

Now, I pry the biscuits out of the pan and drop them on a plate (with a bit more “thunk” than I like to hear).  I saw them in half and slather a good portion of sweet cream butter over the top of each of the halves.  Yum….  I add the eggs to the plate (a tiny bit cold by now) and head for the dining room table, anticipation running rampant!  I sit, I cut the eggs, I take a bite of the eggs and follow it up with a much anticipated bite of biscuit/butter.  Yum………….no, yuck!!!  I guess Bisquick can go bad, after all.  Who knew that a year or two in the fridge was too long for it?  Well, I didn’t.

So in the end, I wound up eating the cold eggs and scraping the melted butter off the top of the biscuits which, by the way, tasted much like the burnt spoon smelled…go figure!  Anyway, let’s just say it’s a good thing my friend sent me that butter because without it, I might have to starve.  My cousin advised me to stop saying “I can’t cook” (because the eggs turned out perfectly) and start saying “I can’t bake”.  Well, I think that’s a very fine line to draw.  After all, two perfect eggs and canned soup does not a cook make…and, clearly, good butter does not a baker make.  So what I really need is for someone to come to my house and cook for me…working on my next gift.  I’ll let ya know how it turns out.  🙂

That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.  Hang on tight now, cuz’ we’re gonna go real, real fast!

Love ya,

Kayce