Monday, July 30, 2012

Paper Beads made into Earrings!

A week or so ago, I posted a picture showing the beads I made from magazines! Well, now I've made them into earrings. They are really cool. I've added a diamond glaze to them so they actually have the texture of plastic. Makes them more durable for sure.  Check them out at my site!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Art Game: All About Lemon

Visit Dolly at to add your flair! Post to your own blog and let Dolly know. She'll do the rest!!!

Hangin' on Tight!

A Funny Thing Happened...

I just had to share this so I won't forget it. Last week my family and I went to Wisconsin Dells for a few days to spend at the water park. There, they have this terrific candy store called Goody Goody Gumdrop where there was an abundance of all types of candy. So what does my youngest son want? A Hershey's bar.

Me: D____!   Stop petting your chocolate!
D____:       I'm not petting it.
Me:          Then what do you call that?
D____:       Stroking!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Making Beads

Every now and then I get restless and need to create. I love making jewelry, but had taken a hiatus when my kids were very young. It seems I get a bit more time to myself these days, and my interest has picked up again.

I started making beads from magazines. What fun! I'm not that good at it yet, but I feel with practice, I'll be making quite a bit of beads. I am looking at magazines in a different way than I did before. I like the pages that have multiple colors on them so I can create colorful beads. Here are a few of the beads I've made (they still need to be glazed, but for now, this is the rough version.): Link to a great website:

With accent beads, I know these will be fun. They are so colorful, it's hard to get a sense what they are really like. After I've glazed them, I will take a pic, then again after I've created jewelry. (Hey at least it didn't cost me anything to do!)

Enjoy your weekend, all!!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Handmade Jewelry

Hey All!
I am so excited! I just put my jewelry (earrings for the time being) on Etsy. I had thought about doing eBay years ago, but the process is so very frustrating.

Please check it out and give me your feedback. I have not put a banner up yet because inspiration hasn't struck yet, but at least the earrings are there.

Very exciting! Enjoy your day!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Art Game: I'm Gonna Getcha!

I'm Gonna Getcha!
Hey! Try this out! It's a blast!Visit Dolly at to add your flair! Post to your own blog and let Dolly know. She'll do the rest!!!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Gratitude with a Capital G

My hubby, Jeff Whelan, got it right when he spoke about Gratitude in his blog post. There is so much in our lives that we really need to stop and take notice of such as the big three: a roof over our heads, food on the table, clothes on our backs, but there are more profound things that need so much nurturing, that we sometimes forget about them in our busy lives: LOVE for our families, friends, co-workers (yes, co-workers) especially those who try our patience at every turn; RELAXATION is not to be overlooked, and I'm not referring to plopping oneself in front of the TV to zone out for an hour or so. I am referring to silence, meditation, and glancing quietly inward to regain our footing; FUN is something we rarely afford ourselves since we are so busy. For example, just today we all went out to the pool and had a wonderful time. My two boys were off playing and Jeff and I were able to talk! Imagine that! Well, that didn't last long, and our two boys came over and started carrying us through the water. I haven't had someone carry me in the water in years! It was wonderful. I am so pleased that I took the chance to observe and relish this joyful moment.

There are so many other things, people, places in our lives that need our gratitude. When we offer up gratitude, huge amounts of abundance comes our way. Enjoy the ride that is our lives! Namaste.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Homemade Gluten-Free Bread!

For four weeks, I struggled trying to make gluten-free bread. Instead of having dense, but holey loaves, these could have easily broken windows. Last week and this week, I finally got it right! I am posting a recipe that is a combination of recipes. Some recipes claimed to do one thing, but I found another. So this is a hodge-podge of recipes that I guess I'll call my own!  If you have any questions, please post. I'll do the best I can to answer them, as I'm new to this as well. Enjoy!

Flour Mix
1 cup brown rice or sorghum flour
½ cup teff flour
½ cup garbanzo bean flour
2/3 cup tapioca starch
1/3 cup potato starch or corn starch
2 tsp xanthum gum
Scant T sugar
¾ tsp baking soda

Other Ingredients
2 oz. sour dough starter (substitute flour with gluten free flour)
2 XL eggs or 3 small
10.5 oz lukewarm tap water
1.9 oz. vegetable oil
¾ scant tsp. apple cider vinegar
Scant 1/8 tsp dry instant yeast
1 ½ tsp salt (last ingredient to be added)

Putting it all together
  •  Using a standing mixer with whisk attachment, at a medium/low setting beat the starter with water, eggs, oil, vinegar, and yeast.
  • Add flour mixture and beat for 2 min. Add salt beat 1 more min.
  • Remove whisk, and cover bowl with plastic wrap. Move to warm place for 1 ½ hours.
  • After it has risen, beat it again for 3 minutes.
  • Transfer to 9x5 prepared loaf pan (greased) and place pan in plastic container that is large enough to   hold pan and cover it.
  • Allow to rise for another 1 ½ hours.
  • Set oven to 375º and place bottom of broiler pan in lowest rack in oven. Heat for 30 minutes.
  • Dust dough with rice flour and, using a greased bread knife, cut three diagonal slits across the top of loaf.
  •  Just before baking, add a handful of ice cubes or a cup of cold water to the tray and place the loaf immediately into the steaming oven. After 30 minutes, rotate 180º and bake for another 20-30 minutes. If you notice the loaf getting browner than you like, cover the loaf with aluminum foil for the duration of the baking.
  • Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
  • Carefully, using a butter knife, loosen the bread from the pan. It’s best if you turn the pan on the side and let the steam escape for a few minutes before taking out of the pan. Careful! Steam is REALLY hot.
  •  Place bread on cooling wrack.
  • Once cooled, use a bread knife to cut loaf. Store in freezer. Your bread will last longer this way, and it really tastes best warm or toasted.

If you use a bread machine, stop by this link for helpful tips!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Sparklers, Anyone?

Hope everyone had a happy 4th of July! 
Visit Dolly at to add your flair! Post to your own blog and let Dolly know. She'll do the rest!!!
Sparklers, Anyone?

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Kristie Haigwood, Indie Author

When I started this blog, I thought that it would just be about yoga. Seems that I've expanded my horizons, so to speak. Honestly, this has been such an exciting adventure. Kristie Haigwood shared with me (as you'll see in a moment) that her characters demand that their stories are told. Well, I guess that's what's happening here. I never in my wildest dreams thought that I would be so interested in learning more about indie authors. My best guess is I've seen how much work my hubby, Jeff, has put into marketing Space Orville and I guess it got me to thinking: Are all indie authors this driven? So my exploration began. I truly intend to keep up these interviews as often as I can (or as often as indies will let me!)

So it is my pleasure to introduce Kristie Haigwood to you all! Enjoy!!!

I finished your book Save My Soul last month and really enjoyed it. Please give a synopsis of the book. I am really very bad at summarizing anything, especially my own books. I feel like I'm not explaining enough so you will understand what the story is about. It took me 4 hours just to write the blurb for Save My Soul. LOL. I'm not joking, I over explain, over exaggerate things and it's really hard for me to squeeze a whole book's worth of events into a couple of paragraphs. So, I will share my blurb and a review from a reader with you if you don't mind.

Blurb -

Kendra Larkin had everything going in the right direction. Her life was seemingly perfect, and she wouldn't have changed a thing about it. Unfortunately, the course of her life was about to be forever altered. A tragic rappelling accident lands her on Dr. Adam Chamberlain's operating table.
She agrees to a deal proposed by a guardian angel to help save the soul of the man who is both her doctor and soulmate. If she is successful, she gets to keep her life. However, she later learns that it isn't just her life that's in jeopardy, but her soul as well.
Even with the help of her handsome guardian angel, Rhyan, it seems there is no happy ending in sight. Torn between her newly discovered love of Rhyan, and the undeniable attraction she has for Adam, Kendra finds herself at a crossroad. With Adam's steadfast rejection of God, and his guardian demon conspiring against her, she fears her soul may already be lost.
Will she find a way to overcome the evil her life is suddenly burdened with? Or will Adam's guardian demon win both their souls and make Kendra his own personal puppet in Hell?

Review - by M Medler "Ella"

Save My Soul is classed as a romance. I think that is wrong. I think this novel creates its own genre. I'll call it `action romance' for lack of a better description.
Kendra Larkin has a problem: She's just had an accident that should kill her. But she's too young to die, so she feels pressured to make a deal with an angel who can save her life. The trouble is, you can't trust just any odd angel and there are some little details Coen has omitted to mention in the heat of the moment.
The events begin to unravel at break-neck speed and Kendra struggles to make sense of life with a guardian angel by her side and at the same time her own feelings towards her angel, Rhyan, dashing nurse Mason and the object of the task she's been given - Dr. Adam Chamberlain, M.D.
I have to say, whenever I see mentions of angels, I worry. To me, religion is a private thing and I don't enjoy having God and Christianity shoved down my throat. I needn't have worried. Despite being full of angels from about page two onwards, Kristie Haigwood makes the storyline so real and its characters so well-defined, that it feels perfectly natural to have a guardian angel read your thoughts, talk to you incessantly and even pop in and out of existence when you least expect it.
There are so many twists and turns, you'll be pointing down the wrong path more times than not. Kendra doesn't know her mind and you'll be living her emotions and rooting for her every step of the way. You might even recognize some of her predicaments, though you might not be able to deal with them with quite as much humor and light-hearted absurdity as she does. The scenes in which Kendra tries to make the models of her photography business look more camera-friendly are the funniest I've read in many months.
I can't imagine there would be anybody that wouldn't enjoy reading this book. It is funny, exciting, fast, sexy, grown up and playful all at the same time. For me it was a wonderful find, a fantastic experience. If I was searching for a read perfectly suited to myself, I couldn't have found anything better.
Where did you get your ideas for the book? For some reason I always feel like I sound like a crazy person every time somebody asks me that question. I promise I'm not crazy; I just have very interesting friends. I don't sit around and daydream about what I'm going to write about next. I can't, it's impossible for me. Call it my muse or call it the voices in my head, but they are very real to me and they tell me what to write. I'm up to 47 voices, er...characters right now. It gets pretty crowded in my head sometimes. But hey, if I can write a novel in 21 days, then a week later turn around and write another novel in 28 days, it really doesn't bother me who thinks I'm crazy.

When did you become interested in writing? June of 2010 an idea kept playing around in my head. I would wake up thinking about it, couldn't sleep because of it, so I finally sat down and wrote a paragraph. That paragraph turned into a chapter, and that chapter turned into a book. Okay, so I never went to college, and had never even dreamed of writing a book, but now here I had one (a very rough one, but with a lot of potential, I might add). I sent it out to 57 different agents and was turned down by every one of them. I can laugh about it now. My writing has improved considerably over the last 2 years, and 5 more books. That first book is actually a series and it will be published very soon. Save My Soul was actually the 4th book I wrote.

Are you the kind of writer that needs to outline your work first or do you just sit down and start writing and let the ideas come? I sit down and start writing, and with very little sleep or food, I never correct anything until after I am finished. Writing a book is just as exciting to me as reading one for the very first time. I know it may sound strange coming from a writer, but I have no idea how the book will end, what will happen in the next chapter or even the next sentence for that matter. Like I said before, my characters tell me what to write and then I write it. Kendra was a very aggressive character. I hardly slept at all. She wanted me writing constantly. Mitch and Ciera were the same way for Forbidden Touch. I was very tired for 2 months straight. I think I slept for a whole 24 hours after finishing Forbidden Touch.

You seem very comfortable writing about the paranormal genre. Why do you think that is? 
The Paranormal world has always interested me. I had a ghost in my house when I was little. I thought for the longest that the old man was my guardian angel, but sadly it wasn't the case. I found out later on in my life that he had lived in my house before my family had moved in. He had taken his own life in the back bedroom of my house; my bedroom. LOL. Don't worry, he never tried to hurt me, but all too often I would wake in the middle of the night to find him staring at me. I was the only one to ever see him. Most kids would freak out about something like that, but I have never been normal, so I guess I am an exception to the rule. Besides, I was 3 when we moved in and 10 when we moved out. I guess I thought that it was normal for every house to have a ghost. *shrugs shoulders* As a young teen I took up reading as my hobby. I read Christopher Pike's young adult suspense novels. I was hooked. Over the years as vampires, witches, angels and other paranormal things crept into the land of words, I leeched on with a passion that cannot, and will not, ever be explained. I love the written word. I love fiction, and if you throw something in there that will make me believe there is more out there than the mundane life we all have to deal with to survive, then I'm all for it. OK, here's my two cents: We all need to believe there is something more out there! At least, in my opinion!!!

You have a new book out called Forbidden Touch. Tell me about that book? Is it similar to Save My Soul or a completely different genre? 
Same genre, different paranormal creatures altogether. Vampires this time instead of angels and demons, and again I will share the blurb and a review from a reader. You really don't want me to attempt summarizing. :o)

Ciera has to break the ultimate vampire law to save Mitch, her mortal soulmate, from a terrible fate. Dane, the vampire who would do anything to win her affection, is responsible for Mitch being framed for murder. A fast chain of events is set in motion, which leads to the soulmates being torn apart and Ciera to lose her heart to the one person she has always despised, Dane. She finds herself completely in love with both men. But a rogue vampire puts them all in grave danger. Can she keep them both? Or will she have to accept one lover’s sacrifice, to save the other?

Review -

A must read paranormal romance! (especially if you love vampires) I would love to start my review with all the spoilers I read during the last chapter, because I just could not believe what happened. I was emotionally worn out when I was finished with a totally unexpected and touching ending. But alas, I do not like to write reviews with spoilers, so here is my no-telling review:
Ciera, a vampire assigned to help solve murders committed by a rogue vampire, has been secretly watching and lusting after, Mitch, a detective working the murders. One of her clever skills is the ability to make herself invisible. As such, she silently watches Mitch nightly, invades his dreams, trying to help him solve the crime. Until one day, Mitch senses her and decides he must have her. After all, he has been with her in his dreams for nights. There is strong chemistry between Ciera and Mitch and you root for them to be together from the very beginning. But Ciera is conflicted knowing that she and Mitch both will die if she gets involved with him, a human.
While is against vampire law to reveal their existence to mortals, Ciera is forced to fully show herself to Mitch and tell him who she is, a vampire, in an effort to save him. When he becomes accused of the very murders he is trying to solve, they go on the run, seeking sanctuary where they could live together without fear of retribution (death) from the Elders.
With the assistance of a witch, they almost reach their destination. Unfortunately, Ciera's brother Dane, who is not her real brother but a vampire friend assigned to watch her, captures her. And another powerful vampire captures Mitch.
Dane is a wonderful character who I disliked in the beginning because he wanted to capture Ciera and seemed like the villain, but then later, I simply fell in love with him within 10 pages. He turned out to be just as captivating and handsome as Mitch. And Ciera who initially rebuffs his advances, soon finds herself falling in love with Dane as well as Mitch. She eventually decides she wants both men in her life and cannot live without either one. I cannot reveal more as there are some major twists and turns in the story. I was almost crying by the end.
I really, really loved this book. It was a great love story and I really hope I see some of the characters in books to come.

Why did you choose the self-publishing route? Had you tried getting your manuscript published the traditional route? I tried traditional with absolutely no luck as I stated before, but I really didn't think I had another option. I didn't know about self-publishing and independent authors 2 years ago. When I did find out about it, and realized how easy it was to do it on my own, I thought, why the hell not? It's my work and all the money and rights to my book will all be mine. So I guess getting turned down by all those agents was actually a blessing in disguise. Everything truly does happen for a reason. I wouldn't have it any other way. Nothing short of the Big 6 could get me to traditional publish, and they would have to have some very deep pockets. My books are my babies, and just handing them over to someone else would make me feel like I have given up on myself and my books. If I can do it on my own, then I will do it on my own.

Please tell me something that is uniquely you. Oh, geez! I find it very difficult to talk about myself. I'm not any better than anyone else in this small world just because I have a few imaginary friends that like to help me write books to entertain people. I don't care if I sell 10 million copies, I will still talk to my readers via twitter and facebook. A few book sales and some change in my pocket will not ever make me better than the awesome people who read and love my books. They make me who I am now and who I will be in the future. I am just me, and that's who I will always be. I don't want to be someone else, and that is something unique about me, because most people dream about being someone other than who they are. I just want to be me.

Where can my readers find your book.
Forbidden Touch

To follow or contact Kristie, follow one or all of these links!

Monday, July 2, 2012

One Month Gluten Free!

Today is one month gluten free for me! Wow! I am really getting the hang of this. My biggest "wow" is how awake I am. I thought because of my chronic pain I would always be tired--trying to escape, I guess. I stay awake so late now that it's really messing with my days! Once I start teaching again in the fall, I will really have to remedy this situation.

I have also found how to bake bread with gluten-free flour as opposed to using wheat flour. Here's what I've found:

  • You do NOT kneed the dough...if you do, which I found out, you get bricks instead of bread. Yuck.
  • You use a whisk attachment (I use my standing mixer for this) to mix the dough. It does not have the consistency of regular bread dough, but rather the consistency of banana bread batter.
  • After it rises 1 1/2 hours in a warm place, you beat it again and put it in a loaf pan to rise for another 1 1/2 hours. 
  • But here's the most interesting piece of information I've found: Put a broiler pan in the oven while preheating 1/2 hour before baking bread. Immediately before putting your bread in the oven, take a cup of cold water and pour in the hot broiler pan. It immediately steams, and you place your bread in the oven and bake. What a glorious loaf I had when I finished! Dense, but holey. YUM!
Although my pain is better, I still use my Tips for Managing Chronic Pain when I need them. But I feel more alert and receptive. I am glad that I trudged through the gluten withdrawal. I do hope that my pain lessens with time.

Enjoy your day, all! Namaste. 

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Independent Author Network, Space Orville

I am so proud and in awe of my husband, Jeff Whelan. He received an award from the Independent Author Network (IAN) for the month of July IAN for the most hits to his IAN page. This is not a surprise for me, I always knew once he got his book published nothing would stop him. It now seems to be happening for him (and of course our family). We are truly blessed.