SMJ’s Christmas Countdown Continues

Apologies, Apologies for missing so many days of the Christmas Countdown!

SockwithM&M

I really have to apologize. There is no excuse for my lack of posting the past few days except…no, there’s no excuse. Can I make it up to you by giving you some M&M’s? I don’t mind sharing even though M&M Peanuts are my favorite.

You’re probably thinking, what’s he doing with M&M Peanuts. Didn’t he just recently make chocolate chip cookies?

I know, but I needed a change from cookies. Besides, I know I’ll be making more cookies over at Sandra’s someday soon. She likes to bake up a bunch of different kinds of cookies. I can’t wait to find out what we’ll make this year. One cookie she makes that I really like looks like a candy cane. They’re fun to make and eat. If she makes them, I’ll try to remember to post a picture. I’ll also see if she’ll share the recipe with you, though I can’t promise. You know how people can be about ‘secret’ recipes.

So, while there are other things to tell you about, I thought I would show you what I was doing yesterday when I should have been posting. See, it was a SNOW DAY for most of the schools in the area. You know what that means, right? We hChristmasTreead a bunch of snow! I mean a bunch! Oh, first, let me show you how snowy and cold it was with a picture Sandra sent me. I know, I know, it’s another Christmas tree picture, but look out the window behind the tree. That’s not just snow on the window, that’s how hard it was snowing outside. The little dog at the bottom of the picture is Rudy, Sandra’s dog. Here’s a fun piece of trivia. Rudy is a rescue from Japan. Yep, you read that right, Japan. Before you ask, no, he doesn’t bark in Japanese, silly.

As you can see from that picture it was pretty crazy weather. We had to wait until the afternoon to go outside and play because it was too windy. When it stopped snowing and the wind eased up a little bit, some of my Sock
Munkee family here at Mom’s house and I went outside to play in the snow.

IMG_20151215_052233Yes, yes, that is a reindeer Sock Munkee, but it isn’t the one from the last post. I’m still hoping Mom might bring him home for Christmas. Although, as long as he finds a good home, I’ll be happy and I know Santa will make sure he does.

This is only part of the crew. They pushed past the rest of us and ran out the door. Then they all jumped in the snow and started singing. Silly, silly, monkeys.IMG_20151215_052159

Over to the right, you can see a couple more of the family. See the one with the orange sweatshirt? He never takes that thing off. He’s such a Syracuse fan. He watches or listens to all the games. When they don’t win or at least play well, he is not fun to be around. He pouts and grumbles for hours. Now that I think about it, he acts kind of like Sandra does when her Yankees don’t do well. Sheesh, sports fans are a little crazy.

FIMG_20151215_052447or now, here’s one more picture of all of them after we came in from playing.
I’m not in the picture, because I took it . I’m getting to be pretty good with the camera. Don’t you think so? It’s a pretty good family pic, but there’s still more family. I’ll have to remember to get Mom or Casey to take one of all of us for Christmas so you can see everyone.

I promise to try and do more catching up tomorrow. What did you do on your last snow day?

Later!

SMJ

Review of Sea Breeze by Jennifer Senhaji

Sea Breeze Review by Sandra S. Kerns

First, let me introduce you to author Jennifer Senhaji in her own words.Jennifer's Author Photo

I was born and raised in San Francisco, CA, and have a husband and two children. Music is an addiction. I can often be found in the car, singing along at the top of my lungs to whatever is playing. I work full time, and I split my spare time between family, reading, blogging, and writing. I’m a habitual quoter. Lines from films and TV shows constantly pop into my head—my kids are the only ones that really get it. I’m an only child, and so of course I married a man who is one of ten children. Other than English, I speak Spanish, Moroccan, and a little French. I love to travel, but don’t do enough of it. Reading has been a passion for most of my life and I now love writing. I’m a klutz, and in my own mind, I’m hilarious.

 

Sea Breeze

Want a fast, fun, exciting read? Check out Jennifer Senhaji’s Sea Breeze available now on Amazon just click the book cover to buy it.

I read this book through in one sitting because I was enjoying myself so much. To me this is a story of metamorphosis. Jordan has lived her entire life responsibly because there was no other choice she could see. When an unexpected chance to spread her wings drops in her lap after an emotional life event, she grabs hold and never looks back. Well, maybe once or twice, but she never turns back. She has decided to try new things and a cruise ship is just the place for that. (Have you seen the activities on the ships nowadays?) Anyway, the one thing she isn’t looking for is one of the first she finds, a HOT man. Not only hot, but fun and sweet without being syrupy. Their journey through the Caribbean was so much fun because the author made you feel like you were right there. You could feel the humidity and the ocean breezes. There is romance, a cruise, you visit Puerto Rico, and watch the characters’ voyage through self-discovery. A great read from every perspective.

That’s my take, actually there’s so much more but I don’t want to spoil the fun for you. I do have permission to give you a little excerpt to whet your appetite, but before that here’s a little more insight into the story. Be sure to read all the way through the post. At the end there’s a special prize!

ABOUT SEA BREEZE:

Jordan has never been in love, or been anywhere. Trapped in Vegas, she schleps drinks and dodges losers, while suffering under a burden only she can shoulder. Her life is an endless stretch of blah with no escape.

Until now.

Instead of looking back, she’s sailing forward.

Eric has left his family and friends in San Francisco to travel the world, tending bar on a cruise ship to fund his adventures. He can charm any coed who comes aboard, but Jordan sees right through him.

On the blue cobblestone streets of San Juan, everything changes. Food. Music. Exotic locations. Possibilities. Setting out to discover the world, will Jordan discover herself?

Sometimes, adventure can set you free…

An Excerpt from Sea Breeze

The ship is still in port, so the wind is minimal as I scoot out of my shorts and step into the pool. The water is warm and I dive to the bottom. Back at the surface, I float on my back and gaze up at the blue sky and white puffy clouds above me. My arms fan out around me and I sigh, content. No worries, no responsibilities. No rushing home. My time is finally mine now. Guilt tightens my chest and a tear forms in the corner of my eye. I dive back under the water to wash it away. I couldn’t stop it, no matter how hard I tried. Nothing I did was ever enough.

I swim around for a while, trying to clear my head, and stretching my leg muscles. After all the walking today, I’m bound to be sore tomorrow. After about thirty minutes, I step out of the pool and sink into the hot tub. I rest my head on the ledge and my eyes close on their own.

A while later, an older couple joins me in the steamy water. I smile at them in turn and lean back, taking in the evening sky. Hints of a beautiful sunset are on the horizon. I’ve been soaking for a while now, and my fingertips are all pruned. I smile again at the couple as they exchange a quick kiss, and take my leave. Drying off, I slip back into my shorts. I can’t help flashing back to the moment I shared with Eric. I really wanted him to kiss me, but it’s probably for the best that he didn’t.

Back in my room, I find Kim lounging on her bed, flipping through a magazine.

“Hey, where have you been all day?”

I take a seat on my bed opposite hers. “I went ashore and spent the day in San Juan. It was amazing. What did you do? Did you go ashore?”

“No. I nursed a horrible hangover until about two in the afternoon. By then, it was too late to consider going. I ended up meeting a couple of my friends for Bloody Marys by the pool, and then we went to dinner.”

“Did you have fun last night?”

“We had a blast. You have to come out tonight, Jordan.”

“What’s on the agenda tonight?”

“We’re all going to meet up at Allure around ten. It’s the nightclub here on the ship. Are you in?”

Allure… That’s where Eric works tonight. He said he’d buy me a drink.  “Yeah. I’m in.”

I hope you enjoyed this excerpt from Sea BreezeIf you would like to connect more with Jennifer here are links to her social media and a chance to win a cool prize.

AUTHOR LINKS:

Website: www.jennifersenhajiauthor.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jsenhaji13

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jsenhaji13

Blog: http://jennifersenhaji.blogspot.com

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jennifersenhaji

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/profile/view/Jsenhaji

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/author/jennifersenhaji

GIVEAWAY:

Win an eBook copy of Sea Breeze and a $5 Amazon gift card from PageCurl Publishing and Promotion. Leave a blog comment with your idea of a dream vacation to be entered to win. Winner will be announced on PageCurl’s Facebook page a week from today!

 

The Voices are Back!

 

A Little Bit About My Writing Process

BtrFlyBride4smallOkay, so it’s been a while since I posted anything. Apologies. I did let life get away from me for a bit. You understand how it is. We went on vacation, and then I had to get Butterfly Bride out for my readers before Christmas, then the holidays, and deadlines for my next release looming. Well, you get the picture. I was a tad overwhelmed.

What happens when I’m overwhelmed? The voices go away. Yep, you heard me, the voices. No, no, no, I’m not schizophrenic, or delusional. At least, I don’t think I am. Unlike Sheldon, my mother never had me tested. 🙂

I’m talking about my characters. If my characters didn’t talk to me, I wouldn’t have any stories to old housewrite. When my brain gets overwhelmed with STUFF, my characters go into hiding. I try to get them to play, but they won’t. Until I stop, take a breather, relax, and maybe get a little organized, they board up the windows and refuse to come out or even turn on the lights. During those times most of what I write is a waste of time and ends up in the recycle bin on my desktop. Hey, at least I recycle, right?

Anyway, to get me back on track my sister (read – editor) gave me a birthday present that kicked the IMG_0516boards off the windows. (See my new inspiring coffee mug on the messy desk.) My characters started dancing and singing, vying for my attention. What does that mean? I finally started writing things I didn’t have to recycle and I finished the next Masters Men book. Wait! Don’t run over to Amazon yet. I said I finished it. Now we’re working on edits, but it will be out in late February.

So, if you want, copy the pic of my coffee mug. Post it on your desktop, phone, tablet, anywhere you need that little extra inspiration to get moving again. You don’t have to be a writer, either. Hey, the voices can be any one. There are times my characters get shoved aside by the voice of a trainer I used to have and Martin starts asking why I haven’t been exercising lately. Unfortunately, Martin moved back to New Zealand, so he can’t harass me in person anymore. Believe me, he had the accent that could make me work out whether I wanted to or not. That’s why ‘that voice’ has a really cool accent.

Granted, for most people ‘the voices’ are more or less your subconscious trying to tell you something. Even when that’s the case, such as my ex-trainer’s voice, it’s best to listen. It means you really need to do something or at the very least, think about something.  So take a minute to listen to that voice in your head and be cordial. Give it an answer, or better yet, write the answer down because that will help you remember it.

Until next time,

Happy Reading!

Sandra