enjoy all the moments ...

The business of life is to make memories. 
So write your stories, draw them, immortalize them through photography … 
however you choose to do it is your choice and in doing so 
enjoy all the moments because in the end, 
the memories are all we have left. 
My boy several years ago on Isle of Palms

the time between by Karen White

I’ve started reading The Time Between by Karen White who happens to be one of many authors who I thoroughly enjoy reading. 

I don't normally write my thoughts about a book until I've completed reading it but I can't help but try to put into writing the feelings this book conjures. I’m less than a quarter of the way through and I am already in desperate love with the character Gigi, a young girl who it seems is really quite an old soul, wise beyond years. The use of language makes you want to highlight every line and commit to memory those that turn your heart inside out but mostly the writing and the story is absorbing in the same way a beautiful sunset can hold you hostage until it fades to dark

I’m always in awe of this author’s talent but this particular book is already making its way to my list of books to be savored and remembered like a homemade chocolate sweet.

“It was as if two souls lived within his skin, separate but not. But maybe everybody was like that, all of us living the lives we had while dreaming of the lives we wanted.” ~P 42.


#KarenWhiteAuthor #Reviews


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 An invitation from  of Urban Girl ... ""If you are a woman and you own a business, you can participate and be listed in our directory simply by filling out this form.  To keep up with events and promotions related to this day, “attend” our Facebook event and follow us on Twitter.  For more information, visit our website.""

Steeped in Evil ... A Tea Shop Mystery by Laura Childs ... A readers review

I have just finished the most recent installment of Laura Childs’ Tea Shop Mysteries, Steeped in Evil and once again, she has written a satisfying mystery with plenty of twists and turns. Three times I thought I knew who dun nit’ and interestingly the culprit was the first one I had considered. I liked that there was enough to throw me off track but I also enjoy the author’s sense of place. Although the locations are fictional, the backdrop is Charleston and since I have lived in the area, I can believe that any one of her settings could very well be a real place. The characters could very well be local Charleston characters and the many events that the main character Theodosia attends could very well be real events in the beautiful city of Charleston, SC, and surrounding area.

This particular story veered away from the typical Tea Shop Mystery formula and a common character Det. Tidwell was given a back seat, replaced by a new law enforcement character who I think could be developed more fully and find his way into future stories. I appreciated the slight change.

I also enjoy the Tea Shop recipes that are shared at the end of the story and although I have not tried any yet, I plan to do so soon enough.

This is a good read, part of a likeable series and if you enjoy cozy mysteries and the lowcountry, this is the series for you.

Want a little more with a Charleston theme? Click here

#LauraChilds #Charleston #TeaShopMysteries #SOB

Nina & Pinta Replicas ... Touring the local area

We are taking advantage of the time we are here on the Treasure Coast so we toured the replicas of the Nina and the Pinta, the boats Columbus sailed to the New World.

My boy in front of the Nina

The Pinta

Pretty impressive!
Sure, why not!

The ropes were works of art

The boats are much smaller than you would imagine. Hard to believe the crew slept on deck.

Very pretty.




My boy!

Another cocktail to try ... a Horse's Neck

Next drink to try is a  Horse's Neck because why wouldn't you want to try a drink called a horse's neck.

In a shaker, add 2 oz or so of a nice whiskey. I like Pendleton, it has a nice smoothness that I enjoy. Add some ginger ale, and a dash of Angostura bitters. Give it a good shake, pour into an ice filled Collins glass and add a long strip of lemon peal. Drink off the top ... don't use a straw.

Photo from Google Images

So what the heck are Angostura bitters anyway? Well according to Angostura, these bitters have a long history dating back to 1824 and the recipe has been kept a secret since then. Well, maybe the people that work for the company know, but most likely they are sworn to keep the secret. Somehow, I keep conjuring pirates when I think of Angostura bitter and the employees of the company where the bitters are processed "keeping the code." Maybe because it's distilled in Trinidad. Made from a secret mix of roots, berries, herbs and plants, it melds flavors and enhances not only cocktails but foods as well.

Photo from examiner.com 
Checking the Code
Photo from pirates.wikia.com

"There's the Code to consider."
"The Code? You're pirates. Hang the Code, and hang the rules! They're more like guidelines anyway.
Joshamee Gibbs and Elizabeth Swann[src]

Check out more in Food and Drink

Fat Tuesday celebration at Crawdaddy's

My boy and I never pass up an opportunity to celebrate Fat Tuesday. We both really enjoy the music and extravagance and of course the food. We stumbled upon a New Orleans style restaurant in the quaint little beach town of Jensen Beach called Crawdaddy's

 All of the wait people were dressed for the occasion, some were over the top but our waitress was really quite adorable and a very good server too. It is always so nice, adding to the experience, when the server is good at their job.

The restaurant started to fill up pretty quick. The music playing was great and really set the mood. I ordered a Hurricane and it was a well done mix of rums and juices.

 We ordered the Crawdads which came in a wonderful garlic sauce, just the right creole spiciness and a bit of a tang. It was delicious. I asked about the garlic sauce but was told it was a secret. 
A big round of french bread was served to dip in the garlic sauce. 
After the crawdads, I had the Gumbo soup and the boy had the Lobster Bisque soup. 
Both were great!

The band started playing outside and they were damn good. Nice mix of zydeco, blues and jazz.

Band members were working to make it memorable.

It was all good.

A good night, but we can't stay too long as the boy has work to finish for school, so we had 
to head home but it looks like it'll be an enjoyable night for those who are sticking around.

 @FemaleBloggerRT  #FemaleBloggerRT  @Blogionaire

What's on our bookshelf ... Tell us what's on yours?

Mari's to-read book montage

Claiming Ground
The Others
Steeped in Evil
Peace Like a River
Christmas In the West
The Last Original Wife
Wildflower Hill
Married Into It
Unbridled Cowboy
Doing the Right Thing: A Teacher Speaks
Leaning Into the Wind: Women Write from the Heart of the West
Buddhist Boot Camp
Shadow of the Wind
And Then I Found You
Unbroke Horses
Ankle High and Knee Deep: Women Reflect on Western Rural Life
The Cold Dish
A Big Sky Christmas
The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman's Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine
Madam: A Novel of New Orleans

Maria's favorite books »


A slice of King Cake for you , maybe you'll find the baby!
From http://cannataskingcakes.com/

"I found myself to be woefully uneducated in the origins of this festival. Apparently the festival goes back as far as 1160’s. The carnival we know today is a delightful mixture of the many cultures who have borrowed from the idea of celebration before fasting ... " READ MORE from the archives!

Traditionally, King Cakes are oval-shaped to show unity of all Christians. The Mardi Gras season, which begins on the "Twelfth Night (January 6th), is expressed on King Cakes by using the carnival colors of purple, green and gold. As a King Cake is cut, each person awaits anxiously for his piece to locate the small baby.  ..." 
To learn more, visit Arthur Hardy's Mardi Gras Guide

@FemaleBloggerRT  #FemaleBloggerRT  

Where is the Postman?

I love to receive mail. Not e-mail, not text. Just old fashioned {handwritten, put it in the envelope, address it with a 'to' and 'from,' put a stamp on it, in the post box, delivered by the post man/woman} kind of mail.

Here is why ...

The expectation is the enjoyment. From the moment you find the envelope in your post to the moment you find a quiet place to sit down to relish the moments is a wonderful expectation, then ... 

Looking at the handwriting, opening the envelope, starting to read:

"Dear Mari’,"

Receiving a handwritten letter opens the part of your heart that is so ready to share intimacy. 

Simple as that!

Look at a new line of beautiful line of stationary at Garance Dore'

When the rain comes ...

Lifeless grass lying quiet 
yet hopeful
Now opens it’s mouth to the sky 
for it’s fill 

And smiles for life again

© Maria Norcia Santillanes 2014

Photo from www.lightcurve.com