Hi everyone! Angel Martinez here with today's Stuff We Like :)
We're often asked what our favorites season is. It's sometimes difficult for me to say, though I can always tell you that I hate summer. The heat and I do not get along and it's just miserable. I like winter, so long as it doesn't overstay it's welcome, and I love fall, maybe because of the relief from summer, though I love the colors and the holidays.
But this time of year? I'll tell you that I love spring best. I could talk about renewal and rebirth, the resurrection of life, so on and so forth, but really it's about the garden. This is when all my favorite flowers start wake up and bloom, all those bulb plants and perennials that make me happy. Mine aren't blooming quite yet. It was a rough winter and they've had a late start. By Easter weekend, they should be.
We have daffodils galore. This isn't my garden, but mine grow like this, in a naturalized way, allowed to spread as they please:
Tulips, just a few. They're some of my favorites though, the red ones that come up in the front yard:
Hyacinths, purple - they come up next to the tulips:
I even love the scraggly wild forsythia that no one actually planted that grows near the woodpile.
It's the exuberant explosion of color after the white and grayscale of winter that makes my heart leap. Yes, there's a lot of cleanup to do. Yes, the street robins are back in their "we don't care that you're driving here" gangs. But I love spring. It does feel like new beginnings.
Freddy here with another Stuff We Like post. I had to think long and hard over the post this week. Last week's post is hard to follow up. I finally decided I couldn't so I went with something simple.
Yes. My post this week is about the star at the center of our solar system.
Why is it something I like? Well, how could I not? Because of sunshine we have beautiful trees and flowers - oxygen to breathe, nice side effect if you ask me - and it helps us feel better. Sunshine is something people need. Their body needs it. And after a long, cold winter (though I admit I'm one of the freaks who love those), it is nice to have the sun back.
I was out geocaching with friends Saturday. All I wore were pants, t-shirt, and a light cardigan (which was kinda hot but I've been sick, so better safe than sorry). It was in the 50s with the sun, and I was in heaven. I could barely contain my excitement as we walked around looking for caches, skipping and hopping along head of them more than once, happily putting my hands in holes and dirty concrete looking for the hidden finds. For me it was perfect. Sunshine, cool air, and playing around outside with friends.
And we were only geocaching because the sun was out, warming us, gracing us, allowing the weather to be nice enough for us to run around. My friend P wouldn't have gone with A and I if the sun hadn't been out, toasting us on a lovely winter day. Some people, like P, aren't big outdoorsy people, but if the sun is out, half the battle is over. At this point in the year, with spring so close, we crave the sun, need it to keep moving forward into another season and another change in our lives.
Winter can beat people down. The cold, the snow, all the nice and salt building up around the city, not to mention the long dark days or overcast days with no sun. (Yet despite all this I love winter time, there are some great aspects to the season). But our bodies get to a point in which it says "Something's gotta give" because as lifeforms on this planet, the sun is something that we need. We wouldn't be here without it, and I am grateful its there to break the cold, dark days.
Welcome to a special Stuff We Like. This week isn't brought to you by the usual Mischiefers. Nope. No Toni, Freddy, or Angel. This week happens to feature someone near and dear to Toni, so you could say it's indirectly related to her if you want. We guess. But this special guest is also familiar to the Mischiefers. We met him when Toni came to the US the first time. He was at the writer's retreat where the Mischiefer crew was born.
Toni's brother, Jonathan, had joined her for her cross country USA trip for moral support. When he showed up in the cabin, we stared at him (and her too). They were HUGE! Also, was this straight, Aussie brother of a gay mm romance writer going to fit in with a bunch of other MM writers?
It was a stupid question really. Jonathan was a blast. Perfectly fitting in with the rest of us. Laughs, good times, and fun were to be had. No one could ask for a better straight ally.
We also discovered he had a beautiful speaking voice. One day we woke up one of our roommates with him reading a book through the door to her. We died. It was awesome.
Toni recently visited Jonathan. On this trip, she finished up her latest Holland Brother book (A Very Holland Valentine), but she also managed to get him to read for her. As in, read an excerpt from her books so all of you can hear her wolves in an authentic Aussie accent.
(He really is a nice brother).
So, without further ado, Jonathan reading from the new, bigger, better version of Forbidden Mate: Holland Brothers 4.
Can you see why we adore him? Jonathan is most definitely Stuff (People) We Like.
You can find Forbidden Mate here on MCB and other third party outlets like Amazon, ARe, and B&N. (And, if you weren't aware of Toni's re-edited, expanded version of her Holland Brothers, here is the updated blurb for FM.)
Finding his mate should have been Patrick Holland's greatest day, instead it turned into a nightmare with one phone call. His mate didn't want him. His heart broke, but at sixteen he was too young to do anything. The next ten years—ten long years— of Patrick's life are spent at odds with his mate. Split by forces he can't comprehend and a long line of misunderstandings, Patrick doubts he'll ever get the man he's both loved and hated.
Jake Richmond never expected to come home from Uni to find the youngest Holland brother was his mate. Knowing the news might uplift his still grieving father, Jake shares the news only to have his young mate threatened. Jake does the only thing he can think of, protect Patrick. The next ten years are nothing but torture for Jake as he watches his mate grow into a remarkable young man.
They say time heals all wounds, but how much time?
Please note: FM has been reedited, and expanded by about 50,000 words.
Another week of Stuff We Like with everyone's favorite squirrel, Freddy MacKay.
It looks as though spring is thinking about visiting. It actually rained yesterday, since the temperature got a couple degrees above freezing.
But onto other things, like this one! *points down*
This is one of my new favorite games: Trivia Crack. I don't normally participate in a lot of the games that are out there, but I made an exception for this one.
It's basically a scaled down version of Trivial Pursuit. Players can make their own questions in the six categories and then you as a user can rate them (boring/fun) or report them, for all sorts of reason, like being in the wrong category.
I enjoy it because I always loved Trivial Pursuit, and because I don't get to see my friends on a regular enough basis to get to play TP. That or they live far, far away. This way we interact, have fun, and talk shit with each other a lot more often then we regularly would.
Sometimes I wonder where the hell the questions come from, but it's good fun and I recommend it if you like battling it out with your friends. ;)