Happy girls are the prettiest girls


Guess who's back, back again

Happy Friday!
Holy moly, bloggy friends, I am finally back! I was consumed by Don't Fight It, my contemporary romance and couldn't think to do anything but work on it. Three weeks later, and I am DONE!
With the first draft. 
There is plenty left to do to make it pretty and readable, but I believe the bones of the story are in place, and with some tweaking, it will be goooood. 

One funny thing that happened over the last three weeks was unintentional weight loss! I kid you not, I was so focused on working on my novel, or getting in my training workouts, I barely did any mindless eating, which resulted in losing 5lbs. Holy crap dudettes, that's enough motivation to keep me writing right there! I also think forgetting to grocery shop was a big player in this hah!

Now, would you like to meet Paulo, the hotty in my story?? Okay, okay, you twisted my arm! Here is his description, told to you from Julianna's pov ;)

I turn a corner and stop quickly as I catch my breath. Paulo is standing with his back to me, barefoot in a blue gi with a black belt tied at his waist. This is the first time I am able to see him clearly, and I like it very much. He has very short cropped black hair, and scruffy stubble across his chin and cheeks that I bet feels amazing on sensitive skin. I don’t have to see his eyes to remember how warm and chocolate brown they are, knowing they could melt me into a puddle just by glancing my way. He is nearly six feet tall, and athletically built with broad shoulders tapering down to lean hips. I can see he is very muscular as he demonstrates a position on the mat and my eyes soak him up while I can. His biceps bulge under the heavy material of his gi as he flips his partner over and takes his back in a complicated position that has got to hurt.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I hope I can be back blogging a little more regularly, but I already have two more books planned to write, and they are itching for some screen time too.


A whole new world

Hello, lovelies! 

I've been a little absent lately, and I apologize. My brain has been absolutely monopolized by a story idea that has finally become so strong and loud I am compelled to write it down. 

You see, I've had story ideas come to me over the years that play cat and mouse with me, teasing me with character bios, and initial plot points that get me excited. Nothing has ever been strong enough for me to write more than a few pages, or move past the general idea that first got me intrigued though. I have a plot problem, usually, as the characters are boisterous and friendly, making me want to write about them, but I have no idea what world they live in or how their story should unfold. 

Well, a story came to me a few weeks back that I marinated on, and generally just thought about for a bit. I never get coherent, good thinking done when I'm running, but this story wouldn't leave me alone, chasing me as I literally ran from it. So last week I had enough, and sat down at my laptop and banged out 10k words in one sitting. Um, where the heck did that come from? The plot is fully alive for me, and I can see where I want my characters to go, what crap they have to overcome, and how I want it to end, but they still surprise me with how they are getting there. 

It's a new adult romance, which is one of my favorite genres to read. It features a sweet, business saavy heroine and a flawed former MMA fighter turned gym owner who literally saves her from a bad situation. Chemistry commences, and the fireworks begin...then are cut off when the past keeps them apart. Intrigued, yet? If you said yes, then you are experiencing just a fraction of what has me itching to sit down at my computer day after day, making pages appear so I can see what my characters do next. 56 pages, and 32k words, and I am still going strong. This is unheard of for me! So I probably will be a little scarce while I play with my imaginary friends a bit longer. 

I have even created a playlist for the story so far. I keep adding to it as I write because new scenes call for the proper background music, so I hope to have a full playlist when this writing binge is over. For now, enjoy the first 13 songs ;) When I played a few for Billy, he told me they were slow and sultry, which apparently is what I like in music lately.


tasty Tuesday: Mahi Mahi tacos

Woo hoo it's the best day of the week, Tasty Tuesday! As always, go show my girl Cassie some love and see what she's got cooking. 
Now, I have to admit something, and it shames me to do so. I haven't done much real cooking lately. Well, I have made my breakfast tacos and smoothies a few times, but that's just scrambled eggs and sauteed veggies scooped up in a tortilla, or frozen fruit whirled together in a blender. Not much effort. As for dinners and baking? Hmmm, I've been lazy. I blame all of the books I have been obsessed with reading, the TV shows and movies I have to watch to stay current, and the running and biking I have to do to train for a half marathon. Oh, and working at the salon, doing hair and makeup for weddings, and taking a ton of babysitting jobs too. Cooking hasn't really been on my mind. I did however make these awesome tacos for the kids I babysat for last week, and they loved them! I actually can't believe I haven't shared this super easy peasy recipe with you yet, I was inspired by Rubio's habanero mango mahi mahi tacos, and I've been making it every other week or so because I love it so much. 

Mahi Mahi tacos
serves 4, or two really hungry people
1 pkg of 3 frozen Mahi Mahi fillets, Trader Joe's brand are awesome
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning
2 tbsp lime juice
1/2 cup mango salsa, I used the TJ's fresh fire roasted papaya mango salsa and it's divine
8 small corn tortillas, I like the TJ's De Mi Abuela corn and wheat tortillas
1/2 cup slaw type shredded veggies, I like TJ's broccoli slaw
1 avocado, sliced
optional add ons: black beans, cheese, sour cream, rice, etc.

Heat oven to 375F. Line a rimmed baking dish with foil, and coat with non-stick spray. Remove Mahi fillets from package and place in the baking dish. Drizzle olive oil over the fillets, then season with Mrs. Dash on both side, and baste with lime juice. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until fish is opaque and flakes easily. Allow to cool, then use your fork to separate the fish into large flaked pieces. Heat your tortillas according to package directions. Top each tortilla with a bit of fish, salsa, slaw, avocado, and any other toppings you like. I keep it simple with the first 4. Dig in and be amazed at how this easy to put together meal tastes. 

Seriously, Mahi Mahi and mango salsa were born to go together. It's a ridiculous combination that brings out the spicy sweetness of the salsa, and the mild buttery-ness of the fish. Perfection. A good corn tortilla doesn't hurt, and the slaw gives a much needed crunch to the rest of the soft taco, while creamy avocado is just the cherry on top for this special treat. Give it a try next time you are in a crunch and have only a short while to get a delicious dinner ready. I especially love that the fish cooks from frozen so quickly! Being able to cook frozen meat beats the heck out of defrosting something. 


Where did the week go

Wait, what day is it, and how did the week fly by so quickly? I feel like I was just writing my Monday post, and here it is Thursday evening and I've skipped a bunch of days. 

Guess it was just one of those weeks, ya feel me? 

Any who, we can all be thankful that it is, indeed, almost Friday, and the weekend is here! I've had something planned every day this week, whether is was the salon, babysitting jobs, hair and makeup for a San Francisco elopement, or massive errands to run that took me out of bed early in the morning. So it's safe to say I took Friday off of everything for myself. I turned down two babysitting jobs and made no plans so I can sleep in, get a run in, and then have a nice leisurely day ending with a BBQ dinner out with Billy. I just need a "me" day with all of the craziness.

Other than generally being very busy, I have nothing too exciting to report on, so I will keep this short and sweet, and wish you all a wonderful weekend! 


Monday recommendations

Happy day after Drinko Cinco de Mayo! Hopefully you are not nursing a tequila hangover and are happily saluting a brand new week on this lovely Monday :) No fun Cinco plans were had on my part, I was busily working from 8:30am-7pm at the salon, but I did hear all sorts of celebrating going on at the awesome Mexican restaurant, El Guapos, next door. Drunk people are funny, dude. They're also loud. Anyway... 
Hope your weekend was fantastic and Monday is treating you well.

Today, I wanted to talk about something that is going on in my life. Something that is relatively new, and is taking over. 

I'm talking about Amazon one click buying of $.99 Kindle books! 
You didn't think something was up, did you? 

Thanks to other bloggers, particularly my friends who love reading and like sharing the giveaways they enter, I have stumbled upon some awesome book bloggers who do giveaways all the time. I've been entering every one I find like a madwoman, and if you follow me on twitter, you have probably seen my myriad posts for this and that giveaway. The giveaways are cool, but that's not where my problem lies. Those same book bloggers who offer cool giveaways for free stuff are constantly updating me on the newest Amazon markdowns for books that are $.99, and I have been buying them. 
Like all of them. 

16 books in the last month. That starts to add up, but it's not really an issue to buy $16 worth of books when in a hardback form each of those books could be $12-20. The problem is my inability to ignore these bloggers posting to Facebook about ANOTHER book that I just need to buy. It's like a compulsion. "So and so's book is now $.99!!!" their posts scream, and I immediately click through to Amazon and hit the one click purchase button. 

It's bad, you guys. I don't even read the descriptions anymore. I just know it will probably be a sexy new adult romance and I will love it. So here I am to share some of my favorites I have bought and read lately, because sharing is caring. And I can't be alone in my fevered purchasing. 

The Voice, by Jennifer Anne Davis was my first purchase made from the recommendation of a book blogger and a giveaway I entered. I was so intrigued by the snippet I read through the giveaway I decided to just buy the book for myself, and it is still $.99!

Off Sides, by Sawyer Bennett was my next purchase and I really loved this one! It's currently $2.99, but I would still buy it.

Give me Something, by Elizabeth Lee was a pretty decent read with an interesting premise, but wasn't amazing in my mind. I did like some of the writing catches though, so it's worth a shot, and still just $.99!

Real, by Katy Evans. OMG you guys will LOVE Remy! This alpha male fighter is ridiculous. And feral enough he likes to lick. Weird, but read it and find out what I mean. I liked the strong female lead, Brooke, and enjoyed reading her story as much as the love story that develops throughout. Now it's $3.99, but absolutely worth it.

If you want a little witchy supernatural action with a fantastic heroine, pick up Escaped by Rachel Robinson for only $3.99! Rachel is a blog friend of mine who is really on a roll with her writing. Escaped is the first in a trilogy I believe, and I know she has more stories on the way. 

Lover at Last, a Black Dagger Brotherhood series book by J.R. Ward $14.99. I gladly bought this awesome book and read it with relish, because I love the BDB series! Quinn's story breaks my heart, and finally seeing his and Blay's story come together was awesome! Male-male sex scenes in this one, just fyi in case that freaks you out. The rest of the Black Dagger Brotherhood series is typical male-female love stories though.

Books I have bought, but haven't read yet: 
Rock the Heart Michelle A. Valentine $.99
Rock the Band Michelle A Valentine $.99
Billionaire Novelist Mimi Strong 4 book series $3.99
Scrap Metal Harper Fox free!
Deceived Eve Carter free!
Beauty from Pain Georgia Cates $3.99
Take me as I am Stephanie L. Williams $4.99

Happy reading my loves! 
Stop by Meg's to do a little mingling! It's been awhile since I linked up, but thought, why not?!
Mingle 240


No Sugar for us

It's a semi-sad day for Billy and I. 
We got a call early this morning letting us know that Billy did not get a job he was applying for. 
Semi because nothing was fixed or certain, but sad nonetheless because we had been thinking and dreaming of getting the Optical manager position at the brand new Sugar Land Costco that is being built. 

What really pissed Billy off is that he didn't even get a phone interview, just the call to say they were no longer accepting transfer requests. We later found out they had hired the optical manager from the Rockwall store, just outside of Dallas. Can you guess where Billy is applying next? Yup, Rockwall ;)

So now I am doing my research and already obsessing about this new town. I am on Zip Realty searching houses. I am Googling salons and pricing for the area. For all intents and purposes, I have moved on. 

Strangely, it hardly even affected me! I heard Billy answer the phone, and from his side of the short conversation, I figured it was Costco, and negative. He confirmed, and then proceeded to feel bummed out. I went for a run. 

I expected to be extremely disappointed by anything other than "you're hired!" but I'm not. I immediately told Billy not to worry, there are tons more stores opening in Texas, and other departments that will need a manager, so we will get out there one way or another. And I absolutely believe this. Maybe if he has received 5 or 10 negative responses will I feel defeated, but right now, there are options available, and I am optimistic. 

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