Merry Christmas!

I wanted to wish all of you a very merry Christmas! No matter how crazy this year has been, it’s now time to celebrate how God touched Earth, light piercing through darkness.

In the Johns home, we’re having a lazy Christmas Eve… mostly because yesterday was insanely busy! We have a little cheesecake waiting to be our Christmas treat we eat when we open presents this evening. In Alberta, Canada, we are locked down–there are no gatherings allowed, so it will be the three of us, plus some video chatting with my mom and dad who live exactly five minutes down the road, but who we won’t be able to see tonight. I’m excited, anyway. πŸ™‚

It looks like my thawing turkey is still a little frozen today, which is GREAT NEWS because I stuck it in the fridge too early, according to my estimations for thawing. But it will be ready to go for Christmas Day! It’s my Christmas miracle. πŸ˜‰ I honestly thought we were going to have turkey a few days early.

I hope you all make the most of this Christmas, too. It will be a quiet one for a lot of us, but we still have phone calls, video chats, internet, and all that beautiful technology that keeps up connected! If you’re a little lonely, drop me a line on FB, Twitter, or even here, and we can wish each other happy holidays.

From my home to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas!

Dollhouse chess!


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As you might know by now, I absolutely adore dollhouse miniatures, and the newest addition to my little collection is a complete set of 1:12 chess. It’s so cute!

It has all the pieces, and the stand is metal, and it has a magnetized surface so that the pieces stick to it, which is a huge relief, because you don’t want to lose a piece that small! It would be next to impossible to find again, and I would probably cry.

My son and I tried a game of tweezer chess, and it IS a playable board!

It’s the perfect addition to my little book nook reading room I have set up, and I couldn’t love it more!

These are the teeny tiny things that make me ever so happy! I am endlessly entertained with miniatures, when I’m not writing books, that is. πŸ˜‰

I do hope you’ll pick up a copy of my newest release that’s still on the shelves! A Precious Christmas Gift won’t be on the shelves for much longer, so pick it up now, while you can! It’s an emotional Christmas read about a mother’s love. ❀

And after this… I suppose you’ll just have to grab a copy online! πŸ™‚


New ornaments


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The Johns family Christmas tree is the kind that is filled with memories. I don’t do color coordination or anything fancy, but every year we buy a new ornament or two that reflects the year before.

This year, I found a couple of new ornaments that I just love! The first one is for my husband–an avocado. He loves avocados, and I bring them home as a treat for him when I grocery shop, so I got a smile out of him when I came home with this one.

The Star Trek shuttle craft is one I found a couple of years ago, and I snapped it up. I’m the Trekkie of the family, still doing my best to win my husband over to Star Trek fandom. It’s been fifteen years, but I haven’t give up yet. πŸ˜‰

For my son, I found a Minecraft figurine. I was informed when I brought it home that it was cute, and he did like Minecraft a lot LAST year, but this year it was Roblox. So… oops.

And peeking out behind the Minecraft pig is Spiderman from a couple of years ago. πŸ™‚

I love having ornaments that remind us of the things we enjoyed over the years. One of these Christmases, my son will be all grown up, and Mr. Johns and I will be a little plumper and a little grayer, and these will be even more precious.


I hope you’ll pick up a copy of my newest release, A PRECIOUS CHRISTMAS GIFT. It’s on the shelves now!

Publishers Weekly Bestseller!


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I am just thrilled to let you know that I’m on the Publishers Weekly Bestseller’s list again! This time it’s for A PRECIOUS CHRISTMAS GIFT, and it came in at #15!

I couldn’t be happier. My author buddy, Jocelyn McClay, was the one who let me know. What would I do without good friends? πŸ™‚

There it is–the proof! With my fellow Love Inspired author Emma Miller coming in at #16.

If you haven’t picked up your copy yet, definitely do! It’s on the shelves everywhere Harlequins are sold, so grab yours! πŸ™‚ You can also pick it up online, if you’re laying low these days. This story is guaranteed to make you cry… but don’t worry, it all comes out well in the end. That’s a romance novel guarantee.


Amazon Bestseller!

There is a great sale on right now for THURSDAY’S BRIDE. It’s now $0.99 for anyone who’d like to pick up a copy online!

The sale was supposed to end yesterday, but the price is still listed, so definitely take advantage of that while you can!

Right now, Thursday’s Bride is an Amazon Bestseller. How cool is that?

So grab your copy for $0.99 while you can! And thank you so much to everyone who purchased a copy and pushed it up into the bestseller category. I’m eternally grateful!


Our Christmas wreath


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For the longest time, I wanted a wreath for our front door, but spending $100 per wreath, per season, just seemed so expensive. And then there the was the question of where you’d store all those wreaths when not in use! So I didn’t get around to it.

But then I visited a craft store, and realized that if you get a grapevine wreath and decorate it differently each season, you can do it at a fraction of the price! Plus, you don’t have to store 4-5 wreaths in your home–it’s the just the one on the door, and you swap out the decorations on it.

So I present to you, our Christmas wreath!

The leaves are leftover from the fall decoration, and I liked them, so I kept them. And I added in the red berries and pinecones.

I like it! It makes the apartment feel so much more welcoming… to no one but the Amazon delivery people and Mr. Johns, but still… It’s the thought, right?

So if you’ve ever pined for a wreath, this is an economic/storage-friendly way to do it!

I hope you are all staying safe and healthy this holiday season. Take care of each other out there! ❀

Don’t forget about my newest release, A Precious Christmas Gift. It’s on the shelves!

Giveaway alerts!


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There are two big giveaways going on right now that you NEED to know about!

Number One:

The first is being handled by Kensington Books on Goodreads! This one is only lasting for two weeks, so you’ll want to make sure you enter soon. They’re giving away 100 free Kindle copies of THE PREACHER’S SON! This is my newest release that hits the shelves in February, so you’ll be able to find it in bookstores, Walmarts and Targets. This is the first book in THE INFAMOUS AMISH miniseries, and so far it’s getting fabulous reviews!

So pop on by Goodreads and enter!

Number Two:

I’m holding a giveaway on my author page on Facebook, as well. This is for three books, including an ARC for THE PREACHER’S SON! This also included my current release, A PRECIOUS CHRISTMAS GIFT which is on the shelves now, anywhere Harlequins are sold. I’m also including a fantastic read by UK author, Clare Revell. If you haven’t discovered her yet, you want to!

So definitely take advantage of those giveaways! πŸ™‚ There are free books to be had!

And stay safe out there, everyone! ❀

Cabbage Rolls


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Cabbage rolls are the kind of food that doesn’t have an official recipe. And I’ll stand by that! Every family has their own version of cabbage rolls, because every family likes something a little bit different.

For example, my cabbage rolls are vegetarian. (Gasp!) My Russian Mennonite ancestors just rolled over in their graves. πŸ˜‰ But my parents raised me vegetarian, so my dad made his without meat. And they were delicious! Mine are like his, but different because I have allergies now that I didn’t have before. So we tweak them for our family’s taste.

It all starts with boiled a head of cabbage.

You boil until the leaves come off the cabbage head, and aren’t too soft, because you need to use the leaves to wrap up your filling.

The filling is a mix of things you like! Some people do ground beef with rice and spices, and a very few others, like me, do a vegetarian mix.

My filling uses:

  • rice
  • spinach
  • blended chick peas
  • garlic
  • diced onion
  • salt
  • oil
  • paprika
  • lemon juice (just as dash)

Then you wrap a large spoonful of filling in a boiled cabbage leaf, and put it in a pan. You put tomato sauce on top, and bake the life out of it for about 1.5 hours. I also add a layer of cabbage leaves on top, just to make sure that the actual cabbage rolls stay moist and don’t burn.

And there you go!

Cabbage rolls!

My family loves them, and since we can’t have my parents over to eat because of Covid, I made these so that I could bring them some cabbage rolls, too. They are a lot of work, so they’re a treat.

So, for those of you who have cabbage rolls in their family repertoire, what do you use in your filling? Cabbage roll filling tells so much about a family! πŸ™‚

Don’t forget about my newest release!
A Precious Christmas Gift is on the shelves now!

Overseas releases!


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I love seeing the differing cover treatments for my books when they are released overseas. I recently got a box of the Mills and Boon version of Mountain Mistletoe Christmas that is being released together with M. K. Stelmack’s All They Want For Christmas. The Mills and Boon version is being published in Australia, New Zealand, and the Philippines.

I notice things like how in the Mills and Boon version, they don’t include the dog. Here in North America, a dog on a cover is a real pull right now! We love our pets, and we love seeing them in our fiction, too. But what sells here in North America is a little different from what appeals to readers in other countries, and I love seeing how the marketing teams work!

If you haven’t picked up a copy of Mountain Mistletoe Christmas yet, I hope you will! It’s the second book in my Second Chance Club miniseries, and I really love these mature heroes and heroines! I think you will, too!


Cassava root!

My husband is from central Africa, and one of the foods he introduced me to was Cassava root. I’m a potato lover, and Cassava root is just close enough to potatoes to be an instant favorite for me.

You can normally find it in the grocery store. I do, and I live in Alberta, Canada–oil and ranch country. So I’m optimistic that others can find it, too.

This is what it looks like. I started peeling it before I remembered to take a picture of it. But this is what they look like. And for peeling, I just use a potato peeler!

You want the Cassava to be nice and white, like a potato. If it isn’t, it’s bad–throw it out.

The picture above is what it looks like when you peel it. The picture below is after I’ve cut it up and put it into a pot to boil in salted water. This is about three Cassava roots cut up.

You want top boil them until a fork will just go through it. It should still be a little hard. The rest of the cooking will happen in a fry pan. (This is half the batch cooking.)

You sautΓ© on medium low heat with diced onion until the onion is soft, and then then take it out!

This is the finished product.

Salt again to taste. And it is SO GOOD! It’s kind of reminiscent of pirogies with onions.

Now, I feel like I should make a disclaimer here. If anyone African is reading this and shaking their head because I’m doing some of this wrong, please know that the mistakes are mine, and not my mother-in-law’s! πŸ˜‰

So there is a new food for you to try, if you’re adventurous! It’s incredibly tasty!


Don’t forget–my newest release, A Precious Christmas Gift, is on the shelves now! I hope you’ll pick up a copy!