The way a man smells.

I was asked to write a guest post recently for Contemporary YA Month. The topic I’m supposed to write about is how to make the male characters in a book swoonworthy. I joke that it requires a lot of research, much like a MANday post. Lots of trolling the internet for pictures of hot guys with abs. But really, it’s more than that.

So I’ve been thinking a lot about it. What do I love about men? What do I love about my husband? What characteristics did I look for when I was dating? Yes, I used to tell my friends that there was nothing wrong with wanting my happily ever after wrapped in a hot package, but I knew it was more than that.

But when thinking about my husband, one thing immediately comes to mind. And no, it’s not his abs or his man parts. It’s the way he smells. Hubby is a big guy, almost six five, and when I hug him my nose is the perfect height to nestle into his neck. And his neck always smells amazing. Cologne, no cologne, sweaty, freshly showered, it doesn’t matter. He just has this smell that makes me feel like I’m home. Like I’m exactly where I belong.

In the Harry Potter book series, I loved that when they did their love potions, the potions smelled like the person they would eventually end up with. I can’t recall which book it was, but Harry’s potion smelled like treacle tart, a broomstick, and “something flowery that he thought he might have smelled at the Burrow.” Later we find out that it smelled like Ginny’s hair. We react strongly to smells.

When a friend of mine read an early version of That Boy, one of the things she told me she loved was the way I had described how two guys smelled. Phillip, her best friend, smelled all manly and musky. “His neck smells really good. I love the way Phillip smells, all manly and musky and quite yummy. For a minute, I almost forget about that Matt guy.” Later she meets that Matt guy. She’s very attracted to the way he looks, but here’s how she described the way he smells, “He smells different than Phillip, more like soap, but still very nice.” My friend told me she knew right then that Jadyn would choose Phillip eventually, just because of the way he smelled.

So what about you? What is it about a man that makes you weak in the knees? Does your man have a certain scent that drives you crazy? Is that what attracted you to him in the first place??

If you want to hear more about what makes a man sexy, check out my book, That Boy.  A contemporary novel about falling in love with the boys next door. That Boy has been popping in and out of the Kindle Top 100 for Contemporary Romance. To find out what readers think of the book, check out all the reviews and rating on goodreads.

Continue Reading

Movie Review – A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas

It’s movie review day here at Glitter, Bliss, and Perfect Chaos. Today we’re seeing A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas. I’m super excited about this movie. I love hilarious, raunchy comedies, and I’m hoping this is a good one!

Here’s the trailer.

The Verdict: I hate when I have high hopes for a movie and am disappointed. And I don’t think it was just me. I expected to laugh and laugh at this movie. I counted six times that the audience at the theater laughed, and some of those seemed a little forced. Like we were desperate to find something to laugh at, so we’d feel like we got our money’s worth. Also our first laugh was about thirty minutes into the movie.

So here’s the deal. We used to have a thing. Like a few years ago. We were both younger, and it was a time in my life where making bad decisions was the norm. I forget why we broke up. Maybe because he was always high, but I forget. Then last night, he called me and wanted to hang out. I’m not sure if I was feeling nostalgic or just a little lonely, but I went.

I used to think he was hilarious, but when we were together, I just didn’t laugh that much. He’s an okay guy. I don’t know if it was that I’ve changed or if he’s changed. Or maybe he’s stayed the same, and I’ve grown up. Our date felt forced. I felt like I owed him somehow. Like I laughed a little, just because I used to tell him he was funny, even though he wasn’t that funny to me anymore. And I don’t care what anyone says. Getting a baby high on second hand smoke is sorta funny. Having a baby on cocaine and ecstasy, not so funny. It just isn’t.

I wasn’t embarrassed to be seen with him, and I certainly didn’t go back to his place. I just left when the date was over. He didn’t really do anything wrong, we just didn’t have a connection anymore. It was just kinda a Bad Date.

My 17 yr. old daughter and her friends are going to see this movie this weekend. I will update this review after they see it, to see if maybe they thought it was funnier than I did. I will also point out the movie critics gave this movie a B-, which for critics I thought was really high! Pun intended.

So when I was searching google images trying to find a photo of someone hot and shirtless from the movie, I seached Kal Penn because I figured I’d have the best luck there. I didn’t find a photo of him shirtless, instead I found this. He has nothing to do with the movie, but I’ve got to leave you with a little hotness.

 

Just a reminder of how we rank movies here at Glitter, Bliss, and Perfect Chaos:

One Star = Walk of shame. I was in last night’s dress, carrying my shoes as I rushed off. I can’t believe I wasted my time on him and pray no one I know sees me.

Two Stars = Bad date. He didn’t really do anything wrong, we just didn’t have any chemistry. Maybe he just wasn’t my type. I probably won’t answer if he calls.

Three Stars =Hookup. We had a great night together. Don’t know if it will be more than that, but it was sure fun while it lasted.

Four Stars = Stalking him. What a night! We danced, we kissed. Now if I could just get him to call me.

Five Stars = Happily ever after. I love him! I want to marry him, have his babies, and live happily ever after.

Continue Reading

Sex.

Sex. The title alone had you clicking over here as fast as you could. Lets face it. Sex sells.

I had a brief twitter conversation with my writer friend, Lani Wendt Young a few days ago. Lani recently released the first book in what has become my favorite new series. The book is called Telesa: The Covenant Keeper. For those of you MANday followers, she also wrote one of the hottest MANdays ever on Somoan Rugby Players and their tattoos.

So the question was, How much sex is too much sex? How should we handle sex in our books? Both Lani and I write crossover fiction. Our characters are young adults, so the books will fall into the young adult categories, but are being read by adults too.

My book, That Boy, follows a character from 4th grade to age 22. I kept the book pretty clean from a sex standpoint. I didn’t really do it on purpose, it just fit the character. She didn’t lose her virginity until freshman year of college (not that she didn’t try!) and sex really isn’t part of the story until the very end when she finally falls hard for the boy she should have been with all along. Plus, she would DIE before she told hard core details about her sex life. She loves sex. She likes to giggle with her friends about sex, but she’d never give out down and dirty details.

The sequel, That Wedding, has to be different. Jadyn is now 22. She’s engaged and getting married. Sex is pretty much her life. It doesn’t help that I’m in love with Phillip. My dirty little mind could wander for days thinking about all I’d like Phillip to do to me. I could even go into great detail about that. But I don’t. It doesn’t fit the character.

I’m also working on a new book series. The main character is 17. She’s sexually active and there are some scenes in the first book where I feel like I’m pushing the edge a little. I thought for fun, I’d share a little scene from this new book. It’s not edited and still a bit rough, but you’ll get the idea. The girl, Keatyn, is at a boarding school. She meets a guy and sleeps with him way too fast. Like they have known each other for two weeks. She’s not a virgin, but the boy that she had lost her virginity to, and who she thought was the love of her life, broke her heart. She’s still reeling from that.

He tells everyone we’re tired and drags me into the house. 
Then I think his hormones kicked into overdrive or something.
He’s kissing me, like fast, hard, long kisses. He pushes me up against the counter in the kitchen, then against the wall in the hall. We finally get to the bedroom, where he quickly shuts and locks the door, then pushes me up against it, kissing me, like ravaging me. I say ravaging because I have snuck quite a few of my mom’s Harlequin Romances, and this is the kind of thing I have always pictured. 
Always dreamed of. 
A boy that wants me so bad, he can barely stand it. 
It wasn’t like this with Brooklyn. It was some intense kissing and then a brief, It’s about time we did this, and then up to his room. It was fun and sweet, not this barrage of kisses.
We start frantically undressing each other, kissing, hugging, breathing.
At this point, I think my hormones kicked in too, and honestly I’m thinking,  Just do mekeep going, don’t stop. I’ve never felt such desire in my life. But just when I’m ready to speed things up, he decides to slow them down. 
He’s wearing nothing but boxers and all that is protecting my virtue is a skimpy lace thong.  
He kisses me. My shoulder, my chest, my stomach, and then slowly strips away what little clothing is left on me.
I can’t even tell you how hot I am.
After he slowly slides off my thong, he’s back to a full scale assault on my body. 
He’s kissing, touching, rubbing, licking, well, everything
Everywhere. 
And it feels very, very good. 
I feel like he’s standing outside my front door, knocking on it. No, make that ringing the door bell, repeatedly, and I want to invite him in. I really want to. My body is definitely in agreement with me on this. My body has been pleading it’s case, begging, saying, Please, please, can he please come in and play, be our our friend, make us feel incredible? But my brain is arguing back, saying, You have only know this boy for a little over a week. It took you three years and all summer to let Brooklyn in and now you want to let this virtual stranger in??? Shouldn’t you be in love with him? What if you get pregnant? What if he’s just using you? What if this ruins everything? Then my body yells at my brain and says, Shut up!!!!  Seriously, shut up!!! I don’t freaking care if he’s using us, I want him NOW!! Freaking right now!!! 
My body wins this round. My brain shuts up for a bit and lets us feel. Feel the electricity running between us, causing every nerve ending I have to practically fizzle and spark. He moves between my legs and, ohhhh, what he’s doing is feeling pretty amazing, and pretty soon I’m trembling and breathing hard with pleasure. And I really don’t think I can take much more. My body screams, OMFFFFFGGGG!!!!! LET THIS BOY IN, NOW!!!!!
I say breathlessly, “Dawson….”
He stops and looks at me, tilts his head at me in question.
I just give my head a little nod. A barely perceptible teeny little yes nod. 
And invite him in.

 

I’d like to know how you feel about sex in the romance books that you read. What do you like? What is too much? I think I write the way I like to read. My preference is to hear about what leads up to the sex. The romantic hot part and then cut away and let my imagination work the rest. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this, so please comment. Do you like to hear about emotions, feelings, the way he touches you? Or do you prefer to read about throbbing body parts and moaning?

Continue Reading

Movie Review – In Time

It’s movie review day here at Glitter, Bliss, and Perfect Chaos. Today we’re seeing Justin Timberlake, Amanda Seyfried, Matt Bomer, and Alex Pettyfer’s movie, In Time.

Here’s the trailer.

The Verdict: This movie has an interesting premise. Time is the new currency. As typical in society, the poor never have enough time, the rich have more time than they need. The movie definitely has things that make you think. Like if you are working your life away, are you taking the time to enjoy it? And if you already have everything you need, are you enjoying what you have?

And did I mention that at age 25 you stop aging? Whatever you look like on your 25th birthday, that’s how you will look until your time runs out. Which makes it just a little weird when the main character is hugging his mother on her supposed 50th bday, but she looks and talks like the girl he should have been sleeping with. You get introduced to the big bad guy and his mother in law, wife, and daughter basically all look the same. He even jokes it gets confusing to him sometimes. Um, ick?

So the guy with no time, gets time, goes to the part of town where everyone has time, meets a girl with wayy too much time, and they sorta fall for each other. Here’s the thing though, if you’re a rich girl, who’s trying to be wild and just got out from under daddy’s thumb, and you’re off alone with the hot guy, and neither of you have much time left, wouldn’t your first thought be, I really wanna do him? Yes, it would. You wouldn’t sit around having all sorts of boring conversations about how people aren’t living! You’d be throwing him on the bed, and doing some living of your own. Then if you want you can like solve the rest of the world’s problems.

This movie wasn’t fantastic, this movie wasn’t bad. Justin Timberlake is a cutie. Amanda Seyfried should have totally boycotted wearing the horrible red wig in this movie. All I could think about when I was watching her was TAKE OFF THE WIG!

And speaking of time, the movie seemed a bit long to me. (109 minutes to be exact.)
Also, it was really hard for me to concentrate much about their problems when the two people I most wanted to spend my time with in the movie were not on screen nearly enough!! Case in point. Matt Bomer.

 

This movie would have been more exciting had it all taken place in Matt’s bed. And we were on a time limit, but then we kept getting more time, and then spending it VERY wisely.

And then there’s Alex Pettyfer. My little Alex Rider. When did he become like a MAN!?! YUM!

So, I liked him. He was nice and all, but I just kept thinking about his hot friends instead of him, and hoping that my hook up with him hadn’t ruined my chances with his friends. Cuz his friends are way hot.

One of the best things about this movie was the preview for a movie, This Means War, set to be released 2/17/12. It features two veryyyyyy sexxxxxyyyy men. Chris Pine and Tom Hardy. Check out the preview. I can’t wait to see this movie!

Just a reminder of how we rank movies here at Glitter, Bliss, and Perfect Chaos:

One Star = Walk of shame. I was in last night’s dress, carrying my shoes as I rushed off. I can’t believe I wasted my time on him and pray no one I know sees me.

Two Stars = Bad date. He didn’t really do anything wrong, we just didn’t have any chemistry. Maybe he just wasn’t my type. I probably won’t answer if he calls.

Three Stars =Hookup. We had a great night together. Don’t know if it will be more than that, but it was sure fun while it lasted.

Four Stars = Stalking him. What a night! We danced, we kissed. Now if I could just get him to call me.

Five Stars = Happily ever after. I love him! I want to marry him, have his babies, and live happily ever after.

Continue Reading

Hopes and Dreams.

Fourteen years ago today, my dreams died.

This morning, I woke up with my hand across the scar that runs across my abdomen and realized what day it was. I haven’t thought about this day for years. Because it’s a day I’d just as soon forget.

It was the day I thought my dreams died.

Fourteen years ago today, I was in a hospital room being told I couldn’t have any more children. Hopes and dreams are so fragile, yet we all cling to them. My husband and I dreamt of having a big family. We had a happy marriage, a beautiful home, a son who was almost two and a daughter who was three. We could picture our kids, all close in age, coming home for the holidays with all their kids someday.

We’d just lost a baby. I was about four months pregnant. We got through that by telling ourselves that it’s okay, we can try again. But first, I had to have a D&C. Suffice to say, it didn’t go well. My uterine artery was ruptured, as well as my uterus and bladder. I lost over a third of my blood, and I’m lucky to be here today.

For a long time after that I forgot how to dream, or maybe I was afraid to dream. My basketball coach used to have a saying posted in our locker room that said, If you can dream it, you can do it. For awhile, I was afraid if I dreamed about it, the opposite might happen, so I stopped dreaming.

I’ve fully recovered. Physically and mentally. I have lots of new dreams, and I’m not afraid to dream anymore. In fact, if anything, I think maybe my dreams have become even bigger. The older I get, the more confident I have become. Watching my kids grow, seeing their wonder in the world, their confidence, their dreams, gave me hope. For years now, most of my hopes and dreams have been wrapped around my family.

A few years ago, I wrote a book. Well, parts of a book. I dreamed of having it published. Of people reading it. Of giving a portion of the sales to charity. My family has made sure that I never lost sight of this dream. They pushed me to finish it, to publish it. And I did. And my mom and a couple of my friends bought copies. I sold three books that first month.

A few months ago, I excitedly told my family I had somehow sold 27 books that month. I told them that I now dreamed of selling 1,000 books in one month. It seemed so pie in the sky that we all laughed and laughed.

It seems very fitting to me that day came today.

Continue Reading

Throw an Easy Halloween Party!

Since we’re doing a bit of a Halloween theme with the MANdays, I thought we should do the same today. Let’s talk about throwing a Halloween party. I know, stop groaning. Sometimes the idea of throwing a party seems like so much work! But remember what Halloween is all about. FUN! Halloween has no religion around it. We really don’t have any big family traditions that we feel guilted into continuing. Halloween should just be about fun. Plus, your friends just want an excuse to dress slutty, so indulge them.

Your party should definitely be a costume party! Call your friends, say dress up, bring your own favorite brew, and join us.

Drinks

Serve one signature drink. Don’t feel like you need to have a big open bar. If people are that serious about wanting a certain kind of drink, you told them to bring it themselves. That means you can focus on one amazing drink. I’d suggest Carmel Apple Martinis. Make up a big batch of them. They are so yummy and a grown up version of the caramel apple suckers that you used to get in your trick or treat bags. Put your best single friend in charge of the martinis, so they will meet everyone. Keep in mind, whoever is serving the martinis, will probably also be sampling their way through them, so you might wanna have a back up.

Carmel Apple Martini Recipe

Drizzle some caramel sauce into the glass first, then pour in a mixture of: 2 oz. Vodka,  1 oz. Sour Apple Schnapps (we use Apple Pucker),  1/2 oz. Butterscotch Schnapps, 1 cup crushed ice. Shake it all up and enjoy!

Snacks

Do a fun orange appetizer like Hot Wing Dip. If you want to get really creative, serve it in a pie plate, then add some olives or red peppers to give it a pumpkin face.

Caramel corn. You can either make your own from the recipe below, or you can just buy caramel corn and mix it up in a bowl with candy corn, cashews and pretzels. Either way, your guests will love it! I will tell you though, this is my Grandma’s recipe and to die for! 

I found this photo on the internet. They have added peanut butter M&Ms to the mix!

Grandma’s Caramel Corn

2 c. brown sugar, 1/2 c. light corn syrup, 2 sticks butter, 1 t. soda, pinch of cream of tartar, dash of salt, 2 bags of microwave popcorn, popped. (And whatever mix ins you want: cashews, pretzel, candy corn, M&Ms.)

1). Mix sugar, syrup, & butter in a saucepan. Cook 5 minutes.    2). Add rest of ingredients and mix.   3). Pour over popped corn.   4). Bake in a roasting pan at 200 degrees for an hour. Stir every 15 minutes.   5). When you take it out of the over, then add your mix ins. Some pretzels, candy corn, cashews.  6). Spread on waxed paper to set. 

Main Course

For a main course, throw some hamburgers on the grill, then let everyone cut their own pumpkin faces into a piece of cheese. How cute and easy.

                                      

Serve some orange and green veggies. Just put in a clear bowl and let the colors speak for themselves. Think mini carrots, broccoli, orange, red and green pepper slices. Maybe some ranch dip to go with it. Or if you’re feeling creative, you can make this little skeleton that my kids and I used to make when they were little.

From my Family Fun recipe book

For dessert, buy some cute cupcakes at the store, or make these adorable ones. (I’m pretty sure you could go to the store, buy plain chocolate cupcakes and just add the Oreo halves and M&Ms.) If guests want to bring something. Say DESSERT!!! 

Adorable owl cupcakes I found on The Hidden List

Games

1). Apple Bobbing.  How easy is this? Set out a big tub of water with some apples floating in it and let them have fun. Guys love to bob for apples. I think this is maybe because they don’t wear makeup. Or maybe it’s because they know that we think they look better slightly wet and sweaty. If I was you, after a few martinis, I’d probably make it mandatory that the apple bobbers remove their shirts. You know, just so they don’t get them wet.

2). Hand out candy. Buy some big bags of your favorite candies. Everyone will love it!

3). Give out prizes for best costumes. Think simple, fun, cheap prizes. Like a condom for the most slutty costume, or a piece of sidewalk chalk or a crayon for the most creative, a plastic spider ring or fake fangs for the most scary, a fake tiara for the most prissy, tanning goggles for the best Jersey shore couple.

4). Maybe buy some Halloween tattoos and have fun putting them on each other.

5). Don’t forget old middle school classics like Suck and Blow, or the toothpick with the lifesaver. Or maybe something like spin the bottle. That will probably depend on how many martinis everyone has had!

Happy Halloween Everyone!!!  

Be sure to cast your vote for your favorite Vampires, Werewolves, and Hunters. The top four will face off on Halloween day!

 Vampire Edition – Bite Me, Make Me Yours

Warlock Edition – Cast a Love Spell on Me!

Vampire Edition – Bite Me, Make Me Yours (part 2)

Hunters Edition – Track me!

Continue Reading