Friday, January 30, 2015

Harlequin Heartwarming Valentine's Giveaway & Upcoming Tour!


Valentine's Day is fast approaching and the Harlequin Heartwarming authors are giving away extra special prize packs in the name of romance and love :). Treat yourself to a chance to win or chance to win a prize for a loved one. My upcoming March release, After the Silence, is in one of the prize packs (yay!), but I'm humbled to be included with so many extraordinary authors...I know you'll be wishing you could win them all! Check out the prize pack on Rafflecopter. Enter here or at our original announcement at the Heartwarming Authors Blog HERE.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

But that's not all...

I have a pre-release tour in February with even more fab prizes, including swag and a $100 Amazon gift card :). Check out the tour announcement and details at Prism Book Tours HERE or sign up to get involved with the tour HERE.


So many ways to win! February is going to be a fabulous month :). Spread the love. See you around!

Friday, January 9, 2015

Cover Reveal!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful start to 2015! May you all have great health, happiness, peace and love this year and forever after :).

Last January 1st, I kick started my year with the release of my debut Harlequin Heartwarming, The Promise of Rain. And now, I'm celebrating January 2015 with the cover reveal of my next book in the series, After the Silence (March 1, 2015). 


Does following her passion mean losing her way?

Marine Ben Corallis is an expert at facing death, but nothing comes close to the terror that grounds him when his wife is killed in a car accident the day he returns from duty. He's left to raise an infant, a toddler and a ten-year-old girl who hasn't uttered a word since her mother's death.

It's hard not to care for the widowed marine with three young children. Yet he's still grieving, too burdened with guilt to fall in love again. And Hope Alwanga's future as a doctor awaits her on the other side of the world, in Nairobi. If two such opposites can't agree on a common country, how can they ever create a safe place to call home?

Available for Pre-Order:

Harlequin (Coming soon in both print and ebook format)
...and wherever you shop for ebooks

Happy 2015 to all!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

My backyard chickens, coop building and hawk attacks

While helping my rooster scare off a hungry hawk this morning, it occurred to me that I never posted updated photos of my backyard flock. That handful of chicks I posted pics of back in March quickly grew to a flock of 18 chickens (they call the addiction 'chicken math'). One of them ended up being a rooster, which is fine since we live in the countryside. He has saved quite a few hens from hawk attacks, but we did lose one not long ago...and another to egg-binding complications. So our current number is 16, including the roo, Excalibur.

Excalibur, an Easter Egger
Taken when he was younger.
We have Easter Eggers, Speckled Sussex, Plymouth Barred Rock, Cuckoo Maran, Buff Orpington and Black Australorps. I'd  have to say that my favorites are the EE and Barred Rocks. This spring, I'd love to add some Rhode Island Reds to our family.

If you recall, we decided to build a coop from scratch. Yes, I thought it would save money. No, it didn't. Well, it did if you compare what we made to buying an equivalent, but it wasn't the cheapest project. I just got all HGTV with it LOL. So here are a few pics summarizing the process. It's 8 x 8 with a sealed floor covered in sand that I scoop like kitty litter. We put in sand/sweet pdz filled poop boards under the roost and every window, eave, vent etc...is covered in 1/4 in hardware cloth to keep out predators. Lots of door locks too!












Note: I now have shredded pine in the nest boxes. They thought the shredded paper was delicious. 


Cynder our Barred Rock
Zuni my sweet Easter Egger who lays blue eggs
The hen up front is Rain, an Easter Egger. She lays pinkish brown eggs. My other EE, Moon (not pictured), lays green eggs.


The nutrient difference free ranging makes. Store bought on the left. Ours on the right. See the color?
So now my biggest problem is hawks. I love all animals and know the hawks needs to eat too, but I'd rather they not eat my chickens. We have evergreen trees the chickens hide under...and plenty of other places to take cover, but the hawks have figured out that our evergreen trees have a fence near them. A perfect place to perch and wait.

That hawk I mentioned was hanging out this morning? He came back while I was in the middle of writing this post and went after one of my Buff Orpingtons named Pippa (after the little girl Pippa in The Promise of Rain). I heard our rooster alarm and ran out in time to chase the hawk away, but he did manage to peck at her comb. I now have her in our basement in a large dog crate I converted into an emergency chicken hospital a few months back. I cleaned up the blood and am hopeful that she'll be okay. She's pretty shaken though and I locked up the rest of the flock in their coop for the rest of the day.

They really love free ranging but I need to put more places for shelter up. This is their first winter with us and many of the shrubs/small trees, such as our fig, that they were successfully using as hiding places, have lost their leaves. We have large expanses of grass where I'd like to add large, ornamental grasses or shrubs where they can hide (berries to eat would be a plus). If only I could train my dogs to guard the flock and not eat them. They're still getting used to our new kitten, Grimalkin.

Predator scares or not, I absolutely love having chickens. I've done so much research on keeping free range, backyard chickens as safe as can be, but I'm off to do more. Finding that balance between giving them a beautiful life and keeping them safe isn't easy. Parenting is parenting...tough no matter what species you're caring for! Tips anyone?

I'm heading downstairs to check on Pippa. I hope you enjoyed the coop building pics!

Note: Many thanks to www.backyardchickens.com and all the backyard chicken keepers that hang out there, www.the-chicken-chick.com, www.fresh-eggs-daily.com and so many other chicken keeping sites. I'm a lurker, but without all the info and ideas shared online, plus great books and magazines, I wouldn't know half of what I do about caring for a flock of fluffy butts. Thanks!!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Pretty PLEASE, with ice cream and a cherry on top...VOTE for THE PROMISE OF RAIN!


It really is raining today. Actually, it's freezing rain and icicles are hanging off the trees. I love a rainy day. I usually find them cozy, but it's quite cold and gray outside today and I'm feeling forgotten.

I had a blast kick-starting 2014 with my debut, The Promise of Rain, but the downside to a January release, is that by the time end of year contests roll around, folks have forgotten that your book release date qualifies it for a nomination. I realize not all books are for all people, but it really did get awesome reviews...you can check them out HERE.

So this week, I noticed two Goodreads Listopia lists/contests up that focus on wholesome, tender romances. One is for Favorite Harlequin Heartwarming...I saw my book on this list, but I'd love to see it climb the ranks...and the other I just learned about at Jennifer Shirks' blog Me, My Muse and I. It's called the Swoony Award and voting ends Dec. 31, 2014. I'd love for someone to nominate The Promise of Rain (Jan 2014)! I think at least 3 votes are needed for it to qualify for the list. It's Goodreads page can be found here, if needed.

So two contests/lists on Goodreads I'm shamelessly begging for a little love and votes on:

Favorite Harlequin Heartwarming

The Swoony Award

If you vote or nominate The Promise of Rain, thank you, thank you, thank you with virtual ice cream with a cherry and whipped cream on top! If not, no worries. I'll still thank you for reading this because that means you've taken the time to visit my blog :).

I don't have a cover of my second book, After the Silence (March 2015), to share with you yet, so I'll leave you with my kitten Grim's sweet face...


Please vote for Mommy's book! She loves animals! It has baby elephants in it who are almost as cute as I am :).

Monday, November 17, 2014

Latest Interview, New Kitten, Next Book and more!

I've been quite scarce in the blogosphere the past few months, popping in every so often at the Heartwarming blog...but that's been about it. I've missed you all, but sometimes things happen we can't control. Shortly after returning from Nationals, I became very ill, spending most of August with a fever, flu-like symptoms and foggy brain. It turns out, I had stage 2 Lyme Disease...a diagnosis that came the day I got my revisions for my second book.

Of course, the die-off reaction I had when I began Lyme treatment was severe and the arthritic and nerve pain (I had a lot of neurological manifestations) made typing nearly impossible. After a few weeks, I managed somewhat, but I had to reserve all my typing energy for revisions, and that meant no blogging (because it really hurt). I still  have some symptoms, but I'm doing so much better now and improving daily. Now, Murphy's Law, right when my hands were not functional, all my major appliances had to break down, including but not limited to my microwave and dishwasher. Sigh.

Also, last month, I had to nurse my eldest through a terrible, resistant strain of pneumonia. We're talking fevers of 103-104.5 while on medication, and an antibiotic that didn't work. He ended up on two different oral antibiotics, plus daily injections (in lieu of hospitalization). Luckily, he finally responded to treatment and is doing well...BUT...I ended up with two weeks of bronchitis that turned into laryngitis and was finally diagnosed with pneumonia myself. Not as bad a case as my kid's, but bad enough, given my asthma. I'm still recovering, but at last I have enough energy to rejoin the world.

A million other things were going on through all this and my stress levels were out the roof, but things are starting to look up now and I have some news to share (warning: cute kitten coming up)!

First of all, my latest interview at USA Today's Happy Ever After is up! It's with fellow animal lover and author Kate James and you can check it out HERE!

Secondly, my second book in my Harlequin Heartwarming series is due to release March 1st, 2015! Yay!! It's titled After the Silence and you can check out the blurb or pre-order HERE.

And finally...

I adopted another kitten from out local SPCA! Those of you who hung around here last November may recall that I adopted two brother kittens (Nimbus and Storm...or as my kid says, Stormageddon) who were taken in after their mother was killed by a car. THIS is the post I had up with their pics at the time. They're much bigger now and the best cats ever.

Well, they've just been joined by a little boy who looks like a Maine Coon mix. My teen named him Grimalkin (Grim for short) after the character in The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa (Harlequin Teen).




Now, cuddling with him makes the past few months worth it :). I hope you all have been well. See you around!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Giveaway & HEA Interview!


Happy September everyone! I hope those of you in the U.S. and Canada had a great Labor Day weekend. Today marks the first day of school in my area and fellow Harlequin Heartwarming author Catherine Lanigan and I are blogging together at the Heartwarming blog and giving away a gift bag designed for kicking back and relaxing with a book and a cup of tea (see pic ;).

The gift bag giveaway includes:

Autographed copies of Catherine Lanigan’s Love Shadows and Heart’s Desire
Autographed copy of Rula Sinara’s The Promise of Rain with matching bookmark

A canvas tote bag, approx 15x15in, (great for lunches, books, groceries & more) imprinted with the cover of The Promise of Rain

A 16 oz, BPA free, Stainless Steel Contigo Travel Tumbler

Teatulia Black Tea, Organic and Rainforest Alliance Certified

A custom ‘Sweet and Heartwarming’ bracelet from the Harlequin Heartwarming authors and…

A ‘Think Harlequin’ button pin


(Please note: The gift bag drawing is open only to entries from U.S. or Canadian residents. One winner will be chosen by random drawing. All other entries (international) will be placed in a drawing for an e-book copy each of Love Shadows, Heart’s Desire and The Promise of Rain.)

All you have to do to enter is hop on over to the Heartwarming blog and leave a comment. Pretty cool, huh?
Here's the link: http://www.heartwarmingauthors.blogspot.com/2014/09/all-shades-of-labor-day-by-catherine.html

Oh, and one more link...

My latest USA Today HEA interview is up! It's with Harlequin Superromance author Claire McEwen and she shares her personal experience growing up with an alcoholic parent. Please check it out HERE!

Have a great day!