Introducing: Patricia Talbert of The Final Ride

I met Patricia Talbert through a mutual friend, Linda Yezak. You could say Linda made Patricia Talbert what she is today. 🙂 So, without further ado, I’d like to introduce you…

Welcome to my blog, Patricia Talbert–one-time high class social coordinator from New York–now a rancher “living the dream” in Texas.

Patricia, when you first arrived on the Circle Bar Ranch, you were a fancy-dressed greenhorn, but you settled in pretty quickly. You were so feminine and ladylike. What on earth made you want to try bull-riding?

CowboyPatricia: At the time, it was the only way I could think of to spend time with Talon. Can you believe that? His ranch work stretched over acres and acres of land, and if I didn’t ask him to teach me to ride, I wouldn’t have seen him from sunup to sundown!

Your background is political. How did you get there and why did you leave?

Patricia: My dad brought me into the outskirts of the political world. He is a US Senator for the State of New York, and when his social coordinator retired, he hired me for the job. It meant hobnobbing with other senators and congressmen, judges, lobbyists, foreign dignitaries—well, you name it, I’ve rubbed elbows with it.

I thought I was happy in that life. Reasonably happy, anyway. I left only because I had to tend to the Texas ranch I inherited from Uncle Jake. After learning more about the faith he and Aunt Loretta had, I wanted it. Then, after learning what real friendship was through the relationships I started developing here, I realized the so-called “friends” back home weren’t friends at all.

But after getting to know Talon and discovering what a Christian man of integrity was like, I knew I’d never find anyone like him in New York or DC. That sealed the deal. I never want to go back, except to visit family.

I can well imagine. What drew you to the oh-so-masculine cowboy, so-not-your-type, Talon Carlson?

Patricia: Let’s start with that oh-so-masculine part and move on from there. One day, I was sitting at my desk in the ranch office, just watching him out the window. He was right across the road, repairing the barn roof in the Texas heat, which meant he had his shirt off. My, oh my . . .

I didn’t realize he was exactly my type until I got to know him. After being married to my late husband, Kent Talbert, I learned not to trust, not to believe, not to take a man’s word on anything. Kent made it difficult for me to love again, so I wasn’t quick to fall for Talon. I watched how others treated him with respect. Saw how deeply his friends loved him, and how his ranch family rallied around him. I experienced for myself his sense of humor, his affection, and, yes, his respect for me.

I admit to taking things slow with Talon, but believe me, I have no doubt where this is going.

Ha ha! Yes, I can well imagine.  Your versatility and strength (Talon called it spunk) brought you through the first installment of the Circle Bar Ranch novels. But your adventurous spirit kind of took a nosedive in the sequel. What caused this turnaround?

Patricia: If you’re talking about my bull riding, believe me, nothing will knock the adventure out of you like waking up with a face full of muck. When Mostro bucked me into the mud and muck of the holding pen, I figured I’d had my fill of riding.

cattle-640985_1280But I still feel adventurous, and I’m totally ready to see what life on the ranch has to offer. And what I have to offer it. Can you imagine, me on a ranch? My best assets are my diplomacy and my Park Avenue wardrobe. If this isn’t adventurous, I don’t know what is!

I think dealing with New York politicians and socialites might be the more difficult of the two. So, other than Talon…who’s your hero, and why?

Patricia: On the ranch, it’s definitely Frank Simmons. He’s like a surrogate father to me. His quiet guidance and gentle humor are invaluable. He assured me of God’s love for me. Of course, I had to prove it to myself, but Frank was right. He usually is.

He’s definitely one of my favorite characters in both books. In Book 2, there are big changes in store for the ranch and its inhabitants. Is there anything you can comment on? Without a spoiler, of course.

Patricia: Oh, you must be referring to Aunt Adele. She’s on a mission to lure me back to New York. You wouldn’t believe the things she’s doing to try to make me homesick. I’d be willing to bet my mother put her up to this. Aunt Adele is my favorite of all my mother’s sisters, but right now, she’s really testing my patience. Not to mention Consuela’s patience. And you know Consuela has a short fuse.  I’m doing all I can to keep the peace around here, but it’s getting more and more challenging.

You don’t want to lose Consuela! Who would do the cooking? 🙂 How do you see yourself in ten years?

cowgirl-419084_1280Patricia: I love dreaming about the future! In ten years, I hope to see my kids and my friend Marie’s kids growing big and strong like their fathers. By then, I hope to know my way around the ranch better—I may even have a school to teach city kids how to ride English and Western saddle, maybe even have a show-jumping school for the kids from the surrounding ranches.

In other words, in ten years, I see myself surrounded by Talon and friends and kids!

That’s a dream I hope you realize, Patricia. Finally, just for fun–what’s in your fridge?

­­­Patricia: Since I’m still learning how to cook, I hope whatever’s in there is something Consuela made—preferably her beef enchiladas or maybe a carne asada. Her culinary skills aren’t limited to Tex-Mex, but that’s definitely my favorite.

Sounds yummy. Perhaps I can visit sometime soon–


13316940_10206565887042896_1503291551972684209_oWith her duties for her best friend’s wedding finally behind her, Patricia Talbert looks forward to discovering what “normal” will look like at her new home in Texas. She owns a ranch now, is in love with its foreman, and is ready to assume her duties. Discovering what those duties entail isn’t an easy feat for a displaced socialite from Manhattan.

But when her aunt Adele arrives on a mission to bring her back to New York by hook or by crook, Patricia’s primary duty is to deflect the bumbling and bullish attempts–until one of Adele’s tricks takes her by surprise.

All of Talon Carlson’s dreams for the Circle Bar Ranch are coming true, along with another dream he never expected to be fulfilled–a chance to love again. Patricia is everything he ever wanted and more, but he made a promise to her not to ride bulls again, a promise he may have to break.

His desire for a better end to his riding career is intensified by vicious rumors about why he quit. If he rides again, he may provide the ammunition Adele needs to make Patricia leave. If he doesn’t, he’ll prove the gossips right.

Patricia or Talon. Which one will take The Final Ride?


A word about Patricia’s creator, Linda W. Yezak:

Linda Yezak

Over twenty-five years ago, after a decade of life as a “single-again,” author Linda W. Yezak rediscovered God’s love and forgiveness when He allowed her a second chance at marital happiness. She is now living her greatest romance with her husband in a forest in East Texas. After such an amazing blessing, she chooses to trumpet God’s gift of second chances in the books she writes. Linda’s novels are heart-warming hallmarks of love, forgiveness, and new beginnings.

      You’ll find Linda at the following locations:     

Facebook Fan Page:  http://dld.bz/LWYFacebookPage

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lyezak/

Twitter: @LindaYezak

 Amazon Page: http://dld.bz/LWYAmazonPage

Goodreads: http://dld.bz/dSPmg

777 Peppermint Place: http://lindayezak.com

Newsletter: http://dld.bz/CoffeewithLinda

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The Skinny on Some Christmas Traditions, by Nike Chillemi

http://nikechillemi.wordpress.com/

I’m so glad you stopped by today. It is with great pleasure I welcome Nike Chillemi as a guest writer. I am so honored to promote her latest release, Goodbye Noel. As you may have guessed, it has a holiday theme. Nike writes historical suspense/crime novels and she’s such a good storyteller! If the reviews (found here) are any indication, this one doesn’t disappoint.  

Nike Chillemi- 

In popular publications we’ve been told umpteen times the first “Christmas” celebrations came from the mid-fourth century during Constantine’s rule in ancient Rome and were adopted and adapted from solar pagan rites. This is not entirely accurate.
There is evidence the Ethiopian Church celebrated the birth of Jesus on December 25th in the 2nd century. Other Eastern churches in the second and third centuries determined the birth of Jesus to be January 5th or January 6th. The Eastern Church still celebrates the birth of Jesus on January 6th, while in the Western Church that date is Epiphany. These December 25th calculations came wholly from church history and heritage (much of that oral). This was before and separate from the papacy decision to declare December 25th the birth of Jesus for conversion reasons. The second century Egyptian theologian, Clement of Alexandria, wrote that ancient Egyptian church scholars practically tried to outdo each other with efforts to pinpoint the date of the birth of Jesus. They also came up with April 20th or 21st and May 20th…all of this having nothing to do with Roman paganism. Is December 25th the actual birthday of Jesus? I don’t know. To me every day is Christ’s birthday. 
It’s true worship of the oak and other trees were quite common in pagan Europe. However, the modern Christmas tree originated in Germany where legend has it St. Boniface cut down a great oak under which human sacrifices were made. Supposedly, in its place a tiny pine sapling grew the following spring and Boniface remarked it pointed to the heavens. That autumn he dug up the small tree and brought it into his house to have for Christmas. Many claimed these trees’ triangular shape signified the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The custom of a potted fir tree in the house at Christmas rapidly spread among Germanic Christians. In time they began decorating trees with bits of sugar candy which they gave to children on Christmas day. That tradition soon evolved into candy canes on tree boughs. Soon other gifts such as dried fruit and small bits of jewelry found their way onto trees.
Then in the 17th century, on a walk home from church late one night before Christmas, Martin Luther passed a grove of evergreen trees. When he looked up, it seemed as if the stars adorned the trees. He immediately cut and decorated a tree with lit candles for the Christmas Eve service. Cut and candle-lit trees quickly spread among Germanic Christians. When Germany’s Prince Albert married the love of his life, the young Queen Victoria, he brought to England the practice of decorating the Christmas tree with candles, candies, fancy cakes, small gifts, and toys. German immigrants brought this to Pennsylvania in the 1800s and the custom rapidly spread across America.
Eggnog is entirely American. While it’s true Europeans of wealth enjoyed eggy-milky drinks with fruit. The first true batch of eggnog was mixed up in 1607 at Captain John Smith’s Jamestown settlement. At that time it was called “egg and grog.” I’m sure we can all imagine what the ingredients were, as colonists called any drink with rum grog. It soon became a drink given to carolers at Christmas along with sweet meats and confections.
Stock.Xchng image #1148932
What about ye olde fruit cake? Cakes with fruit have been baked, well…as long as cakes have been baked. What we think of as the fruit cake, made with preserved fruit and nuts goes back to the middle-ages and the Crusades when people took this type of hearty cake on trips to sustain themselves while away from home. The British love affair with fruit cake began in the 1400s when dried fruits first arrived in the misty isles from the Mediterranean. In the mid-1800s cake with candied fruit had become a Victorian tea cake. It also became a cake served at weddings. Naturally in a time before fruit could be flown to markets from orchards and groves in a warm climate, the candied fruit cake made a perfect Christmas cake. In modern times it seems not to be as popular as years gone by, but fruit cake sales are still surprisingly high.
Whether you’re looking for a good holiday read, or the perfect gift, Nike Chillemi’s Goodbye Noel is a good fit. 


Links to order the book:

Amazon – ($2.99)                          Christianbooks – ($2.89)

Nike Chillemi has been called a crime fictionista due to her passion for crime fiction. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Edgy Christian Fiction Lovers (Ning). She was an Inspy Awards 2010 judge in the Suspense/Thriller/Mystery category and a judge in the 2011 Carol Awards in the suspense, mystery, and romantic suspense categories. She is the founding board member of the Grace Awards, a reader’s choice awards for excellence in Christian fiction. She writes monthly book reviews for The Christian Pulse online magazine. Burning Hearts is the first book in the crime wave that is sweeping the south shore of Long Island in The Sanctuary Point series. 

Fruitcake photo from: Stock.Xchng image #1148932