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Interesting Reading

May 2016
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Please welcome today’s guest, Christine Young to the blog. Christine is an author and owns Rogue Phoenix Press with her husband. Please make Christine feel welcome by leaving your questions and comments for her in the comments section below. One lucky person who leaves a comment on one of Christine’s blog tour stops will win a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card and an ebook copy of Dakota’s Bride. When you’ve finished here, be sure to visit for a list of Christine’s other tour stops. 


Cover Blurb From Highland Sunrise

Cover_Highland SunriseHe Made Her An Offer…

Life has thrown Christel McClellan some experiences that could have devastated a less determined woman. Beautiful, self-assured and fiercely independent, she is trying to forget the loss of her stillborn child. But is the child alive?

She Couldn’t Deny…

Life is carefree for Ryder MacLaren who loves to see what is on the other side of the sunrise. Laird of Clan MacLaren, he is wealthy, handsome and happily unencumbered…until stunning Christel McClellan enters his life. When he hears her story, he believes the child she thought dead has been sold to a wealthy buyer.


An Excerpt From Highland Sunrise

But Christel pushed away from him and pointing, “There, do you see her. She is sitting on the wall.”

Ryder strained to see the apparition Christel pointed toward but he saw nothing. “No, but I think I hear her.”

“Yes, she is crying, not weeping as usual. Do you know anything about her story?” Christel turned to him, hope shining in her soft blue eyes.

“I’ve heard her lover died. But that was a long time ago.”


Ryder pulled her back into his embrace, not ever wanting her to leave. He would hold fast to her for as long as she would allow him. “At war… I don’t recall which one. The clans seem to have always been at war with someone, especially the English.”

He felt the nod of her head against his chest. “Does anyone know the legend? I would seek them out.”

Her breathing was slow and she seemed relaxed. But Ryder feared for her. If she started asking questions, would this ghost come to harm her? He didn’t know anything about apparitions. But he also knew he would have to give her a chance to discover the truth. “Only if you let me go with you. I would be honored. There is a woman, older than time. She wanders the castle grounds. Most see her in the late evening and early morning.”

“Old as time, no older?”

A shimmering silver light hung over the castle and floated above the turrets. Ryder pointed toward the light. “Is that her?”

“She’s a bit reclusive.” Christel turned in Ryder’s arms. “Yes, that’s her.

“One might say that about her.” His hands rested at the small of Christel’s back. He wanted to kiss her but didn’t want to frighten her again. Maybe a lazy gentle kiss would be accepted. The thought made him grin.

He traced her neck with the tip of his finger, hoping she would find his attentions acceptable then bent close to her. “I want to kiss you. Will you let me?” She shivered in his arms but turned her face up to him.

“Yes.” She breathed softly. Her words gentle yet hesitant.

Her reticence bothered him. What had happened in her past? His thoughts shot to Lord Rathen and her hasty departure from London. Every part of him tightened with disgust. He would discover the truth and make the despicable rake pay for any injustice committed against Christel.

Watching her eyes for signs of fear, Ryder lowered his mouth to hers. He touched her gently, molded his lips against her, thrilled to hear the sigh of pleasure emanate from her. He ran one hand up her back, pulling her closer, reveling in the feel of her softness against his hard planes. Her breasts pushed against him. The need to feel every inch of her pulsed through him but he didn’t dare.

He moved back and once again looking into her eyes. She lowered her lashes then returned his gaze.

“Don’t think, little one, just feel and know that I would never hurt you. I want more but I won’t rush you.”

She touched his cheek with one slender fingertip. “Kiss me again.”


 About Christine Young

Born in Medford, Oregon, novelist Christine Young has lived in Oregon all of her life. After graduating from Oregon State University with a BS in science, she spent another year at Southern Oregon State University working on her teaching certificate, and a few years later received her Master’s degree in secondary education and counseling. Now the long, hot days of summer provide the perfect setting for creating romance. She sold her first book, Dakota’s Bride, the summer of 1998 and her second book, My Angel to Kensington. Her teaching and writing careers have intertwined with raising three children.  Christine’s newest venture is the creation of Rogue Phoenix Press. Christine is the founder, editor and co-owner with her husband. They live in Salem, Oregon.



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Please welcome today’s guest Gina Brewton to the blog. Gina isn’t an author, and she’s not here to talk about her book. Instead, she’s here to talk about one of her interests…stained glass. Like Gina, I find stained glass beautiful. While I don’t have any full stained glass windows in my home (which incidentally was a church before we bought it) I do have a couple of stained glass pictures that my sister made for me. These hang in our front window. Please make Gina feel welcome. :) Don’t forget to scroll to the bottom of the post and fill out the Rafflecopter for your chance to win one of our weekly grab bag prizes.

In history, stained glass was a thing reserved for the most luxurious buildings. You could only find them in castles, churches and other places where members of high society resided. Today, they’re not just for royalty. Anyone can install amazing stained glass windows in their house that look just as magnificent as those in any cathedral or castle. Here are just a few examples of some incredible stained glass windows in homes around the world.

The Montacute House


The Montacute House is adorned with stained glass all throughout. This Elizabethan mansion was completed in 1601 and was, at the time, the quintessential statement of wealth, showmanship and ambition. This stained glass window overlooks the gardens at the Montacute House, displaying the various coats of arms associated with the mansion along the top.

A Melbourne Home


This elegant, artistic stained glass comes from Melbourne, a small town in Ontario. This stained glass window uses a simple pattern and symmetry to create a stunning, earthy-colored window you just can’t seem to take your eyes off of.

The Krakow Medical Society House


This stained glass window comes all the way from Krakow’s Medical Society House. Again, this house is filled with stunning, colorful stained glass windows just like this one. This stained glass window was designed by StanisławWyspiański, a Polish playwright, poet and painter. He also dabbled in interior design, like when he created the windows for this stunning home.

The Simmons-Bond House


This elegant stained glass window was crafted in 1903 by an architect named Levi Prater. The yellow-brown tones of the window are significant of the times, and the house has been declared an historic place by the U.S. government. You can see these stunning windows today if you have a few dollars in your pocket, because the house is now an inn/bed and breakfast.

Red House of William Morris


William Morris was a prolific artist of the 1800s, having painted, written and been an avid social thinker. This stained glass window can be found in his Red House home in London. Morris considered the house to be a palace of art, and stunning works of stained glass can be viewed all through the home. This intricately created stained glass art is only one example of many in the home.

The Two Fish


This modern-looking stained glass example comes from a home in Luneburg. The window features two fish on either side of a doorway and a lamp in the middle. The thick metal gives the window an interesting and unique quality not often seen in stained windows.

Stained glass windows have been around for centuries. They can be seen in old, classic style, such as those in cathedrals, and they can also be seen in more modern settings. No matter what your taste, modern or classic, you can find a stained glass window  style that suits your own unique personality.

These are just a few examples of some of the most elegant, stunning and interesting pieces of stained glass art I have found. Some of these art pieces can be in installed even in our home with the help of residential window installers. Each art piece you come across is result of the hard work from creative minds!

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Gina Brewton has been in the home improvement industry for the past 7 years. She is presently working at a residential cleaning company in Toronto. She is also a part time interior designer. She has her interests in cooking, photography, craft and painting. Follow her on twitter@ginabrewton.

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Please welcome today’s guest M.J. Taylor. M.J. is here today to share some interesting information about toilets. Be sure to scroll down to the part about the toilet themed restaurant. That part made me smile for sure. 

Also, don’t forget to  leave a comment and fill in the Rafflecopter for your chance to win one of our weekly grab bag prizes. 

After baseball, the next most popular American pastime is “taking things for granted”, at least that’s what my grandmother always tells me. And any visit to a State park outhouse or a construction site Honey Bucket lets you know in a heartbeat that flushing toilets is something we take for granted big time!

While billions of people around the world are taking care of business whilst hovering over a deep dark hole, only .5% of US homes today lack indoor plumbing. Think about that the next time you complain about single-ply store-brand toilet paper.

So at any rate, in honor of the modern marvel that whisks away all of our unspeakables to the sewage treatment plant in the sky, let’s take a look at these fun facts about toilets:

It’s good to be the King!

The world’s first flushing toilet belonged to King Minos of Crete in the 18th century B.C. (Before Crapper?). Maybe that’s why the toilet is appropriately called “the throne” in many households.

Hold on, I’m on a call.

Across the globe, more people own a cell phone than own a toilet. I wonder how many people call up their friends to ask “Hey, it is OK if I come over and use the john?” Anyone with an overflowing toilet will be glad for the plumber’s hotline.


Do you find it mysterious and inexplicable how you can flush the toilet, go about your day, and come back to find the tank ready for another round?

Well, you can think Kurdish inventor al-Jazari for inventing this flush-and-fill mechanism. Over 800 years later, virtually all modern toilets use the same technology.

Can I get a nickel?

The average American household spends 5 cents per day flushing their toilets.

And you thought Europeans were more civilized.

Up until the 18th century, most city dwellers in Europe used chamber pots to gather bodily waste and then casually tossed it into the streets. Um, yeah, I think that I’m going to move out to the countryside.

“To spend a penny.”

“To spend a penny” was once English slang for using the toilet, and the story behind the phrase came from the first public toilet at London’s Crystal Palace in 1851. Guess how much it cost to use one?

You gonna be in there long?

The average person spends a total of 3 years over the course of their lifetime sitting on the can! No wonder we’re always looking for something to read.

Can I just get a plate, please?

In Taiwan there is a toilet themed restaurant where patrons eat their meals out of miniature toilet replicas, while sitting on the real thing – with cushions, of course. It’s called Modern Toilet. I just really don’t know what to say about that.


In the United States, more toilets are flushed during the Super Bowl halftime show than at any other time of the year.

An urban legend.

Thomas Crapper did not actually invent the modern toilet, but he did sell them, lots of them. In the late 1800s he founded a very successful plumbing company and was awarded many patents for his improvements. English soldiers in WWI started using the term Crapper as slang for the toilet because of all the advertisements for Crapper’s Plumbing throughout London.

Oui, oui!

The word “toilet” itself comes French. Toilette is the act of cleaning or grooming one’s self.

How dare you!

The film Psycho was the first movie to show a flushing toilet on screen. Complaints flooded the studio and movie houses about the indecency. Um, yeah, I don’t think that they’d want to see what’s on the boob tube nowadays!

Great Scott!

Toilet paper used to be sold in individual sheets, but you can thank the Scott paper company for today’s rolling version. They began selling rolls of toilet paper in 1890. Do you ever think about what people did before toilet paper? Yeah, it’s probably best that we don’t think about that.

And the grand finale – a serious note:

World Toilet Day is on the 19th of November every year. The organization works toward improving sanitation in parts of the world where there is no indoor plumbing.

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By M.-J. Taylor

Author M.-J. Taylor writes for a variety of clients on home improvement and real estate related topics.

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The Fallen Angel Series

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