~~ "She has so many aliases, you'd think she was a spy!" ~~

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Cat Scratch Fever by Sophie Mouette

It's finally available! Cat Scratch Fever, my first-ever published novel, written with my very wonderful friend Teresa Noelle Roberts as Sophie Mouette, is back in print! Thank you, Little Kisses Press!

Here are the deets:

What development coordinator Felicia DuBois at the Southern California Cat Sanctuary needs: Sex with something other than her vibrator. Gender and number of participants optional.

What Felicia doesn’t need: Someone sabotaging the make-or-break benefit that could mean the future of the sanctuary. She especially doesn’t need ultra-sexy Gabe Sullivan from the Zoological Association sniffing around, wielding the authority to close the cash-strapped exotic cat breeding facility.

But damn his smoking hotness!

Felicia’s in a race against time to find both sexual fulfillment and the saboteur before the Sanctuary’s future becomes as endangered as the felines it houses.

Available in print and a variety of electronic formats:
KindleNook | Smashwords | Kobo

Friday, June 07, 2013

Awards make me happy :-)

I write stories, and groovy editors who like my stories buy them for their anthologies, and those anthologies go out into the world and some people buy them and like them.

And then some of those anthologies are held up for even greater praise.

D.L. King is one of those groovy editors, and she bought my story “Winner Take All” for The Harder She Comes: Butch/Femme Erotica. And now that anthology has won a gold metal for Erotica in the Independent Publishers Book Awards and a Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Erotica! It’s also a finalist for the Golden Crown Literary Awards – what a trifecta that would be!

I’m thrilled for D.L. and so very happy that my story is part of this wonderful anthology.

Thursday, June 06, 2013

The healthy mac-and-cheese experiment, take one

Remember when I asked about healthy/healthier mac-and-cheese recipes? I finally got around to trying one, last week when we were on a “make a shit-ton of food to freeze” kick.

I opted for this recipe, and made the following tweaks:

I used caulflower instead of squash, and I didn’t measure it; I basically used a small head of cauliflower. Instead of buy both peccorino Romano and Parmiagano-Romano, I just used Parmiagano-Romano. And of course I ditched the panko crumbs and parsley, because that does not a creamy mac-and-cheese make.

The result: a rather bland mac-and-cheese that tasted of cauliflower. It’s not bad, it’s just not…not at all what I wanted.

We had some shredded medium cheddar in the fridge from a previous meal, and I tried adding a bit of that to the individual servings…and it was much better. I was hesitant to use cheddar in the recipe because it normally doesn’t cook/heat well (it’s so oily), but now I’m re-thinking that. It shouldn’t take a lot of cheddar (especially if I went for the extra-sharp kind) to bump up the recipe flavor.

I’m also pondering this recipe, which is similar to the first but uses cheddar and jack cheeses. I’ve also seen one that tosses in half a cup of gorgonzola, which sounds heavenly. (I do like a spot of gorgonzola with my pasta, Gromit!)

The experiments shall continue!

Monday, June 03, 2013

A very belated birthday post

Dear Diary, my name is Dayle and this is what I did for my 47th birthday…

I’d originally wanted to go to Catalina Island for my birthday,* because you get to go free on your birthday. But my birthday actually fell on a Saturday this year, and I’d rather go during the week, and, perhaps most importantly, my birthday again fell on the same day as a nearby SCA event, King’s Hunt. So I decided Catalina could wait.

The event was near Solvang, a pretty little Danish village, so I thought it would be lovely to make a weekend of it. We headed up Friday afternoon, stopping in Santa Barbara to have a random dinner at a Thai restaurant, then continued on and checked in to the Solvang Gardens. Because they have English gardens, and are eco-friendly, and all the rooms are a little different. I didn’t get pics of our room, which was small but very pretty. We booked late so we didn’t have a room overlooking the gardens, but that was okay.

The next morning we had breakfast at this little hole-in-the-wall place in Buellton that had the best corned beef hash I have ever tasted. When I told them that, they told me about how they marinate the beef for three weeks, etc. Holy bejeesus, it was good. Once a month they do locavore dinners, and I so want to go!

King’s Hunt and my birthday have shared the day before, and last time, I brought cake. Cake, I learned, was not the best plan, as it was a hot day and the fighters didn’t want sugar in the middle of fighting, etc. Cake Fail. So this time, I thought it through, and splurged on an enormous Edible Arrangement of fruit on a stick. Success! I wandered around the event and walked up to people (whether I knew them or not) and said “It’s my birthday! Have fruit!” I ran out of fruit before I accosted everybody, sadly.

One friend had brought champagne! for me, but she had only a little and Ken had only a little and Morgana doesn’t drink, and about a third of the way into the bottle I realized if I didn’t find someone else to share this, I was going to spend the rest of the event snoozing on the dayshade floor, so I set off across the field to where Albra was merchanting, because Albra has plied me with champagne on many occasion. I lounged on the daybed in the back of her merchant booth and got whapped in the head with the back wall because it was very very windy and we polished off that bottle, mmm yes we did!

We spent the rest of the afternoon in our friends Rod and Collette’s pavilion, because, as I mentioned, it was very very windy and the dayshade was threatening to become the farmhouse from The Wizard of Oz, despite being staked down. After that, we bundled Morgana and Brian into the car and drove back to Solvang, and went out to dinner at a nice Italian restaurant. We drove them back to the event site and then curled up in our room for a movie and snuggling.

Now, here’s the thing. Solvang is smack in the middle of wine country. It’s surrounded by vineyards. What I wanted to do on Sunday, however, just goes to show what type of person I am.

Vineyards? Feh. Let’s go visit us some miniature donkeys, baybee!

Okay, first we meandered through Solvang in search of breakfast. Our intended destination was packed, so we backtracked to a little place in the center of town and ate in the courtyard. I had an omelette with lobster and Havarti and avocado, OMG, and tried to take pictures of a little bird I was feeding toast to.

We went back to the hotel (by way of the Hans Christian Andersen Museum and at least one thrift shop as well as a hat shop because Ken needs some kind of bowler but they didn’t have the right style) and lounged in the gardens for a bit. The breeze was soft, the sky was blue, the trees whispered. Mmmm.

And then we went in search of miniature donkeys.

I’d been tempted by the ostrich farm, but I’ve been to an ostrich farm in South Africa and I was a little tired so I had to triage my animal visitations that day. The miniature donkey farm has a petting zoo of rescue animals (as well as miniature donkeys): chicken, rabbits, a giant tortoise, goats, turkeys, etc.

(It was hard to get a good photo because the wee beastie kept moving around…)

And they had a zonkey. I didn’t know until I read the brochure at the hotel that such a beast even existed. It’s a cross between a zebra and a donkey. It was unimpressed by our presence and attempts to take pictures. Did I mention its name is Zeeyore?

After that, we went to a miniature horse farm, but it was hot and the miniature horses were even less unimpressed by our presence than the zonkey was, and we weren’t allowed to pet them. I did discover that miniature horses are frighteningly well endowed. There. I said it. Move on.

We had a lovely drive home; instead of sitting in traffic on the 101, we cut through Ojai (sadly, we were too late for the Ojai Raptor Center’s Open House, although I’d already resigned myself to that fact), and then stopped for Indian food in Ventura before making our way home.

It was a perfectly lovely way to spend my birthday weekend.


*If possible, I like to have adventures on my birthday. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I love the loot, but the memories are what make things truly special. In the past, I’ve gone to the LA Zoo, played with meerkats, hung out in a tiny bar to watch Styx’s drummer play, stayed on the Queen Mary, gotten a tattoo, held 80s flashback parties…