This blog is for those 18 and older.

Friday, June 30, 2023



Well, hello there.  Good to see all of your bright and shining faces again today!  Hope everyone is doing fabulous, kicking butt, and getting “stuff” done.

As for me…not so much.  LOL

Have you ever wondered if your stars were crossed? 


Oh, I’m well past that now. In fact, I’m pretty convinced that my stars have all fallen from the damn sky and are lying on the floor of the desert in the middle of BFE wishing I would just let them die and end the pain.

Okay, I can see I’m going to have to back up a little bit here.

This is about change.

(Exaggerated eye roll here.)

More specifically, about new processes, new updates, and a new software tool.

Don’t get me wrong…it’s a fabulous tool and will be of tremendous value to me once I finally learn how to use it and the new development cycle quiets a bit. Right now, the updates are coming faster than I can keep up with them.

A good thing?


In my case?

Uh…not so much.

You see, I’m distracted.  I am working my proverbial arse off pulling together a Kickstarter campaign to create a boxed set of cowboy stories for the Butterscotch Martini Girls. Which means I’m distracted as hell.

So, warnings come into my inbox and I don’t see them. Then when I go to use the tool after six months of not having even glanced in its direction…and all FREAKING HELL breaks loose!!!

What do I do? I try to fix it, that’s what I do.

…then I make it worse.

So, I fix it some more.

…worse still.

Then I try to fix it a different way.

…doesn’t fix it, but now I have a whole new problem statement.


Now…and only after almost a full week of pain…I decide to finally reach out to the help desk, begging them to rescue my sorry arse.

They were very nice when they politely explained that they might need some screen shots and files to help them.

Oh, yeah. (Head nodding.) I can do that.

So I send them a very nice PowerPoint presentation with slides and comments and arrows…it’s a damned work of art!

Oh yeah…and the files they asked for.

With a smile, they cheerfully reply, hoping to confirm that I am using either .png or .jpeg files.

I am!


I started with .png, but they were too large and clearly bogged the system down. So I resaved the files as .jpg files and used those, which worked better, but brought me to the issue where not everything was showing in the viewer.

…this made me think…

Is there a difference between a .jpeg file and a .jpg file?

The internet seems divided on this question.

One source says yes…one is three letters and the other is four. (Not helpful.)

Another source says nope…no difference whatsoever. (Hmmm…maybe.)

A third source says yes…a very minor difference in the color profile due to the age of the file type. (I’m betting on door number three at this point.)

Think this would affect me and cause my issue? (Because we all know it’s about me.)

Well…I doubt it. But…we all know I cannot leave well enough alone. I have to know. So, I convince myself that it would be helpful if I tried to confirm this is not an impactor before I go back to the helpdesk and their developers.

Now I have a mission…to save the .png file again, but this time as a .jpeg instead of the older style .jpg.

Oh-kay…I’m off to see the wizard!

I open the file, save it as the newer file format, re-upload it into the tool I’m having issues with, hit the download button and…voile!


Well…not nothing. It was something. Just not the something I wanted. The circle of death spun for a few minutes as the computer was thinking. Then it spit out this very ugly error message indicating “Export Failed”.

Hmmm…that’s new.

Not good.

I decided what made sense was to put everything back where it was before I went back to the developers.

When in hell have you EVER known that to work?

Yeah…me neither.

Anyway, I went back and uploaded the original file again (.jpg), and requested a new download.

ERK! Same “Export Failed” error message.

Damn the luck!

Not only had I not diagnosed the problem, but now I had a brand-new problem statement.

If things continue to get worse, I’m going to have to stop helping!!!

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

Love ya,  

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Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Falling Down the Research Rabbit Hole


        Hello, gentle readers! Hope you are all well and staying safe!
        It’s been a week and by that, I mean, it’s been a bit crazy (the day job is always crazy—which I’m convinced is the new normal) but both DH and one of our fur-babies are not feeling well. And if those things aren’t enough, I fell down the research rabbit hole. Not sure if you’ve ever had this happen, but it’s a real thing. It doesn’t take long to go there and you never know how long you’ll stay. Hours can fly by without you even realizing it.
How did it start? Well, I needed to look up one thing—just one—for my work in progress. It was about harvesting wheat, which, up until now, I knew nothing about (well, that’s a misstatement, I know how it’s done today. I didn’t know how it was done in 1871, which is when my story is set).
I learned so much and the more I learned, the deeper into the rabbit hole I went. Believe me, it wasn’t hard. One thing just kinda led to another (I love Google…before Google, I had to go to the library to learn this much).
Of course, that just started another barrage of research, not only about wheat (how it’s planted, grown, reaped and turned into flour) but so many other things like medication for arthritis sufferers (the DH has arthritis throughout his spine like his mother did), symptoms and causes of Celiac disease (which I suspect he has but I’m not sure yet) and too many other things to mention here.
And that’s about all for me….like Alice, it’s back down the rabbit hole I go. What will I learn today? Who knows, but I’m up for the challenge!

Stay well! Stay safe! And remember to spread kindness wherever you go!


Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Cora's Pride (Wilderness Brides, Book 1) by Peggy L Henderson

 Independent and never willing to give up, Cora Miller makes up her mind that she will lead her two sisters and brother on the Oregon Trail.  It's not an ideal plan in 1852.  Every wagon is required to have a man leading, her brother too young, and Cora's new husband up and left to follow the gold trail.

Repeatedly betrayed by men, Cora trusts no one but herself and siblings.  With hard work, they can make the trail.  Ignorance might not be as blissful as the cliché claims.  

Nathaniel Wilder  doesn't see himself as irresponsible, but rather adventurous.  He constantly roams the wilds of the forests and mountains in search of life.  He always returns to the trapper whom raised him and his brothers with bounty for all.  The respectable thing to do when he meets up with someone who needs a hand is to help them.

Perfect timing when Nathaniel encounters Cora and family in dire need of assistance as marauders plan to take advantage of them.  Cora stubbornly declares she is fine on her own, yet Nathaniel secretly keeps a distant eye on the travelers.

Several mishaps later, and an acceptance of "some" help is allowed by Cora.  When Cora and Nathaniel begin to work together and learn to accept friendship, the relationship continues to strengthen and create bonds that may lead to a life of love high in the mountains or deep in the forest.

Happy reading,


Friday, June 16, 2023


Hey ya’all.  Great to see all your bright and shining faces out there today!  Sorry I was MIA on my last blog day…somehow, I spaced it out.  Well, I say “somehow”, but I can tell you exactly what happened…Kickstarter and family business managed to do a brain-wipe on me. 

Okay, let me start again so this makes sense.  Nope, there is no connection between the BMG Kickstarter campaign and my Monk…er…Family Business…those are just the two large projects that are sucking down my time right now like a chocolate junkie with a double-fudge shake. Hell, I thought a Kickstarter campaign had a lot of moving parts…it ain’t got nuthin’ on this project to try to sell off a piece of family land.  Not a ducking thing!!! 

At first glance, this land appears to have 3 live souls on title, along with 6 deceased souls…God rest ‘em. Then, as you work your way deeper into the family tree, those 6 deceased and 3 breathing souls turn into 11 departed and 18 drawing breath. Now you throw in a little (or a lot of) bureaucracy and there are 25 birth and death records to find on people who were born across multiple states, born at home, and some possibly beamed down, from what we can tell. 

We have families who have not a living soul that we can find, families who seem to have an aversion to keeping records of any kind, families who appear to be living off-the-grid, and families with a strong affinity to marrying someone new every two years. Holy Ducking Batman! 

Ever tried to stand before someone in the vital records office and try to get them to understand that you need your deceased aunt’s death certificate because she willed the piece of land on this here deed to your mother (also passed as shown on this here death certificate), and you are now the heir (as shown on this here birth certificate) to that property…if you can prove Auntie and Mother have crossed over? 

Don’t try it.  Logic doesn’t work when applied to the rules at the vital statistics office!  They just give you their not-so-resting-bitch-face and tell you that doesn’t prove you have a need for the document. Apparently (according to the woman with the cranky attitude), that little piece of magic requires an actual court order that you can get by filing a probate, or an immediate family member.  Well…that’s what we are trying to do…but we need the death certificate for auntie in order to file a probate proving her death to the title company, and her children seem to have been raptured from the planet. 

So…can’t file a probate to establish our right to inherit until we have all of the death certs, but can’t get one of the death certs until we get a court order which they indicated could be done with the probate. And there are only so many times you can explain to them that you cannot get her kids to get it for you because…THEY HAVE BEEN RAPTURED! 

Well, that’s the kind of crap I’ve been dealing with on the monkey business side…that and the typical family nonsense that just seems to follow me like a black cloud tied to my belt. 

The Kickstarter, on the other hand, has been more fun and more productive, but one hell of a lot of work. Dani Petrone and I have been curating lots of different kinds of merchandise to come up with some really super rewards for our backers.  Going to be some really fun stuff!  So be sure you save your pennies and keep an eye out next month for some links to the pre-launch page when it opens up. We are planning some discounted “early bird” specials that will only last a short while, so you want to be there choosing your tier on Day One! 

Oh…and before I go…remember those leather bookmarks I mentioned in my last blog? The ones with the BMG logo on them? Uh-huh…uh-huh…you are gonna love ‘em!!!  They are freaking fabulous. 

In the meantime, hang in there, Cupcake. Summer’s here and those of us in the Valley of the Hotter ‘N Hell are about be thrust into the blast furnace.  Hang onto your hats and your iced tea…or Margarita, as the case may be. 

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

Love ya,  

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Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Insomnia Stinks!


        Hello, gentle readers! Hope you are all well and staying safe!
Oops! I posted on the wrong day. Apparently, I skipped a day in May and just posted when I thought I should. I realized this last night, while I was trying to go to sleep. I used to suffer from insomnia, but over the past couple years, it’s gotten much better. What works for me (at least it did until last night) is routine (surprise! When isn’t everything I do routine oriented?).
Anyway, back to last night. I went to bed later than usual (which is a no-no because I broke the routine…and yes, I paid for it). My body was tired (I did a lot of heavy cleaning yesterday and I’m not as young as I used to be). My brain? Not so much.
You know how random thoughts pop into your head and just, kinda, keep going? Like a roller coaster? Or a runaway train? There’s no rhyme or reason for these random thoughts…they just happen. At least, that’s what happened to me last night when I was trying to sleep. Some of the things that popped into my head? Here’s a few (in no particular order):
  • When is DH’s next appointment with the gastroenterologist? This prompted getting out of bed and going to the calendar, which did not have an appointment listed. I know his follow up was a month after his original appointment, so when did he go? Flip back the calendar pages. Hmmm, no appointment showing at all. When did we go? Look through my checkbook register to find out. Found the date and yes, I was right, his appointment should be coming up. Rifled through my purse looking for the appointment card, wondering why I never wrote it down on the calendar (which I’m usually good at doing). Hmmmm, no appointment card. What the heck! At this point, I was saved from more searching when my DH asked why I wasn’t sleeping. Turns out, he had the appointment card in his wallet!
  • Remember to pick up an anniversary card. Hmmmm, do I have other events this month I need cards for? Again, this prompted getting out of bed and checking the calendar then writing myself a note so I wouldn’t forget said anniversary card.
  • Should I change the living room around? I could put the couch over here and the love seat there. Wouldn’t move DH recliner…he wouldn’t like that (it’s positioned perfectly for him). On second thought, maybe it’s time for new furniture. The couch and loveseat are over thirty years old. What would I like? What color? What style? What about LoveSac, where you can make your own configuration? What would I do with the old stuff? I could always put them out front with a sign saying “Free to Good Home”, but how would I get them out of the house? It was difficult getting them in the house (I remember having to take the doors off the frame so they could be moved in). That thought prompted another one – the DH and I can’t move the furniture ourselves. The couch has double recliners and is really heavy and he can’t lift heavy things since his back surgery. Can I hire movers? Just for that? Would they even do that?
  • What should we have for dinner tomorrow? Maybe a nice roast (if I can find one that doesn’t break the bank). Maybe spaghetti (I settled on spaghetti, just need to remember to take the sauce out of the freezer).
  • Pick up a new chamois (washed my car yesterday and couldn’t find the chamois in the mess my DH calls his workshop. He couldn’t find it either!).

So these were just some of the random thoughts that floated through my head when I should have been sleeping (the last time I looked at the clock, it was after 2am). On a good note, I did think of a few scenes for my work in progress so it wasn’t all bad (did I get up and jot those down? You bet I did!). Tonight though, I’ll make sure I’m in bed at the proper time to avoid all these thoughts. Tomorrow is a work day and I won’t be able to function on just three hours sleep like I’m doing today. 

  Stay well! Stay safe! And remember to spread kindness wherever you go!


Wednesday, June 7, 2023

The Ink Black Heart by Robert Galbraith

 Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott, detective partners extraordinaire with a heated undercurrent of love, are entangled in another multi-layer murder investigation.

Without experience in online discovery, Strike and Robin are jerked into the homicide case of  Edie Ledwell, cartoon artist of The Ink Black Heart.  Her partner is paralyzed from the same attack, but reveals little to no clues on the case.

Strike and Robin work excessive hours on a full load at their detective agency, of which I feel they do in order to ignore the sentiment they both almost consciously admit.  

Strike's rugged, yet handsome appearance always attracts the most beautiful and rich woman in England.  He doesn't intend to use them, but his heart is hidden in Robin's pocket.  

Robin rarely dates, but keeps herself busy searching for clues and answers for the agency.  I chuckle when Strike thinks a man is interested in Robin because he forces himself to wish her well even if any other guy is nothing more than a bloke and not good enough for her.  She silently admits she loves Strike.  Dashing my excitement as the reader, she insists on changing her feelings.

Fortunately, the murder investigation is incredibly in-depth with many characters taking part and keeping me engrossed in the story as I wait, and wait for Robin and Strike to somehow find a way to be together.  

Happy reading,


What I'm Up To


        Hello, gentle readers! Hope you are all well and staying safe!
Holy Cow! Can you believe it’s June already?!?!? Been so busy lately, that I hadn’t even changed the calendar until today (that’s kinda sad…it’s June 4th), but that’s okay. I’m having fun. Sorta.
The day job is crazy busy and I’ve come to the conclusion that crazy is the new normal (and that’s what I get for taking a few days off from said day job and extending the Memorial Day weekend to five days—believe me, I’m paying for those days off!).
I did a lot over those five days though and I’m pretty pleased with myself. Aside from my usual chores, I made a big batch of spaghetti sauce and read through Wife Wanted from beginning to end (with red pen in hand and thesaurus close by, not mention sticky notes…I’d be lost without my sticky notes!). I read it out loud so I can catch my mistakes (sometimes, it’s easier to hear them than to see them). I found, much to my utter mortification, that my hero smiles. A lot! He is a happy-go-lucky kinda guy (even though he’s had his heart broken), but still. So I’m fixing that as well as a few other things I’ve found. There’s a lot of red on these pages! I think I need a new red pen! I’ve even started looking at cover pictures even though I haven’t finished my edits and I’m not nearly ready to release this story yet.
Work is also progressing on Wife By Surprise (did I mention I changed the title of the Sheriff’s story? It’s more fitting, I think) and I’m enjoying that very much. I’m still in the ‘finding out who my characters are’ stage (even though I’ve written their biographies) and I’m learning some interesting things. Hope it all makes for a good story.
And that’s about all for me…it’s a work day tomorrow and I still have a lot to do.
Stay well! Stay safe! And remember to spread kindness wherever you go!