Saturday, January 30, 2016

New Release & Author Interview | Going for Two

In honor of Going for Two’s release, I’m sharing some fun facts about the book and Queen of the League series.

I have a bit of a sweet tooth, and it comes out in full force during the fall and winter, which happens to collide with football season. It was only natural I’d give that sweet tooth to Harper in Going for Two. But because it’s all too easy for me to make a pan of brownies and plow my way through it until I’m sick, in recent years I’ve tried to satiate my sugary appetite with single serving mug cakes. I’ve had a lot of fun experimenting with recipes, and one of my greatest triumphs makes a cameo in Going for Two. I’m including the recipe in this image—though I forgot to mention that it helps to spray a little non-stick spray into your coffee mug before you pour all of the ingredients into it. It’s pretty scrumptious!

I hope you will check out the other facts—view a complete listing of locations and dates on my website,—and the series.

Thank you, Kayla, for featuring Going for Two—and me—today. Enjoy!

About the Book

Harper Duquaine is back for another season of fantasy football! This time she’s a year wiser and prepared to dominate the league. But while she finally seems to have her fantasy life in order, reality proves more challenging.

Her plans to peacefully play house with her boyfriend come to a halt when the high school suddenly names Brook its head football coach. The promotion comes with more responsibility on the field and less time at home. It also unexpectedly means more work for Harper, who already has her hands full helping a friend pull off the perfect proposal (while dodging questions about when she and Brook are going to get hitched already). Plus, a new development at work could leave her—and half of the fantasy league—jobless.

With the complications of her career and being “Mrs. Coach” adding up, Harper wonders if she’s committed to the life she’s already building or if there is something else out there.

Find the Book


And from January 20-29 you can get First & Goal, book one in the Queen of the League series, for only 99 cents.
Barnes & Noble:

About the Author

Laura Chapman is the author of Going for Two, First & Goal, The Marrying Type, and Hard Hats and Doormats. Her work also appears in Merry & Bright, A Kind of Mad Courage, and the holiday collection All I Want For Christmas from Marching Ink. She loves Huskers and Packers football, Netflix marathons, and her cats, Jane and Bingley. Laura makes her home in Nebraska, where she is penning her next novel.

Author Interview

P&B: Describe your style. I have a pretty casual, laid-back style. I basically live in t-shirts, cardigans, leggings, and jeans when I’m at home. I have to dress up a bit for work, and I typically go with whatever looks classic and pretty, but feels comfortable. So that means sweaters, light blazers, and ballet flats. I wear a lot of black and gray—which is great, since I work at a museum—but I like some pops of color, usually blues or pinks with bluish undertones. I’m pretty pale, and those colors seem to suit me. I have a pretty solid scarf collection, my current favorite is a red, plaid blanket-style scarf. And I keep my jewelry pretty simple too. I wear a couple of pieces every day: an antique gold key necklace with “BELIEVE” imprinted in it from The Giving Keys and the classic Lokai bracelet my sister gave me for Christmas. I have a tendency to worry too much and stress out, and both of those pieces of jewelry remind me to have more confidence in myself and strive to be more balanced in how I approach life.
P&B: What's your favorite book or series? Growing up, I was a huge fan of the Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder and the Anne of Green Gables series by L.M. Montgomery. I loved learning more about what the world was like in our past through the eyes of two such independent and bright girls, who turned into young women. Like most of my contemporaries, I grew up with Harry Potter, and am a big fan of those books. I love several of Nora Roberts’s series, particularly the MacGregors and the Sign of Seven trilogy. I love historical romances from the three Js: Julie Garwood, Judith McNaight, and Julia Quinn. Most recently, I was pretty obsessed with the Hunger Games trilogy. All of these are well-written stories filled with adventure, excitement, and love. I’m actually in the process of re-reading my thirty favorite books and series. I turn the big three-oh in June, and this is my nerdy little way of celebrating. So far, I love the experience. I’m reconnecting with some of my favorite characters and stories, and it’s all a reminder of why I love books.
P&B: What's your favorite movie? This is another one that’s tough to pick just one. I actually have a top five—in no particular order—The Princess Bride, When Harry Met Sally, Return of the Jedi, Beauty and the Beast, and Sense and Sensibility. If we expand to top ten, I add in The Little Mermaid—which is sometimes a top five in lieu of Beauty and the Beast, depending on the day—Love Actually, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Willow, and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. Some of my friends tease me about that last one, but I unapologetically love it. You’ll notice a constant with all of those movies is that they each have a great love story in it. About seven years ago I met George Lucas, and I made sure to tell him he was involved in three of my all-time favorite movies.
P&B: What advice would you give to someone who wants to write a book? Just do it. Your story matters, and no one can tell it except for you. I’d also suggest really writing a story you love—or love telling—that first time. You can worry about editing, marketing, and all of the other business sides of the process after you write that book. But savor the process of creating a world and seeing it come to life on screen/paper. Writing isn’t always fun. It’s work. So make sure you savor the good parts when you have a chance. I’d also suggest that you remember that this is your writing journey and no one else’s. Don’t compare your journey to any others, which is way easier said than done. It’s easy to get jealous, annoyed, frustrated, or devastated if you focus too much on what other people have done or are doing. I have to remind myself of this often, but I’m a much happier author now that I’m focusing more on what I can control rather than what I can’t. And I’m trying to enjoy my experience, because it’s mine. To quote Miley Cyrus, “Ain't about how fast I get there/ Ain't about what's waitin' on the other side/ It's the climb.” Yes. I did just quote Miley. Ha!
P&B: Favorite nail polish color? I can’t seem to ever give you one answer! Again, I have a list. This winter, I’m really feeling “Grease Lightning” by Sally Hansen. In the spring and summer, I love “Peachy Breeze” by Sally Hansen and “Nice Stems” by Sinful Colors. When I need something more neutral—sometimes my day job calls for it—I typically go with “Sand Storm” by Sally Hansen or “Private Viewing” by Wet and Wild. Those are my biggest repeats, but I have a fairly extensive collection. I’m guilty of checking out the nail polish selection almost every time I go to a drug store, and about half the time come out with a new color to try.
P&B: Favorite treat? Oh, so many. It’s actually a bit of a problem. When it comes to junk food, I’m a sucker for barbecue Pringles or Lay’s dill pickle-flavored chips. I also love cherry sours, orange slices, cinnamon gummy bears, Whatchamacallits, Dots, and Milk Duds. When I’m practicing better self-control, I love munching on pear slices with almond butter and sliced sweet peppers dipped in guacamole. I always keep single-serving popcorn packs on hand in case I get hungry after dinner. And no matter how hard I try, I can’t kick my pop addiction. I love Diet Dr. Pepper and Diet Coke best.
P&B: If you could travel to anywhere in the world, where would you go? Even though I was fortunate to have the opportunity to spend one week in England in my early twenties, I’d love to go back. And this time I’d like to explore more of the country—including trips to Bath and Liverpool, in addition to a return to London. I’d also like to explore other parts of the UK, visiting Scotland and Ireland. I’d probably need a month to do it right. When I was in college, I mapped out a couple of plans for backpacking Europe—plans for six weeks, eight weeks, twelve weeks, and sixteen weeks—but I was never good enough at saving money, and I started an internship a few days after graduation and a full-time job a week after my internship wrapped. I don’t regret my internship or first job, but sometimes I wonder what could have been if I’d gone the backpacking route.
P&B: Best love advice you've ever received. It wasn’t advice actually given to me specifically, but one of my favorite thoughts on love comes from Sex and the City. In the movie, Carrie Bradshaw says in a voiceover, “Some love stories aren't epic novels, some are short stories. But, that doesn't make them any less filled with love.” I think that’s a beautiful thought and something that’s good to remember. Not every love story ends with happily ever after. But even having a happy for now can be something to treasure.

P&B: What's next for you?
I’m working on the next book in the Queen of the League series: Three & Out. This one will take Harper to new places and experiences, and I’m looking forward to telling this story. I’m also finishing up a standalone book, which I started during National Novel Writing Month this past November. I still need to massage this story a bit more, but I’m hoping to have it ready for publication sometime in 2016 or 2017. And aside from that, I’m really focusing on adding that balance I mentioned earlier. I’m making sure to build in time for having fun and being with the people I love. I have a lot of blessings in my life, and I want to make sure I’m appreciating them to the fullest.

Thanks so much for having me as a guest. These questions were fun to answer.


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Friday, January 29, 2016

Cover Reveal!

Lisa Edward has re-done the cover for her book, Songbird Caged, and it's amazing!!!! Could there be a hotter cover model?

Title: Songbird Caged
Author: Lisa Edward
Series: Songbird Trilogy #2
Cover Model: Dez K

Tara has made a promise. 

A promise to wait six months for Riley to come home from his tour of duty, so they can be together. 

But as secrets and lies are uncovered, it leads Tara to question their commitment, and she is finding it difficult to keep that promise.

The distance between them is growing, and only one person can fill the void, Tara’s best friend Cole.

As Cole tries to support Tara, he is struggling with demons of his own, that threaten to tear him away from the life he has built for himself.

After devastating news is received, who will be there to pick up the pieces?

*On Sale for $.99 January 29th - January 31st*
Buy now

Other Books in the Series

Songbird: Book #1

Songbird Freed: Book #3

Amazon Author Page:

Plogging | Week 4

Another week gone and so is January! Sheesh, this year is flying by! I don't know about you, but I'm pretty excited for Feburary and all the fun stuff I have coming up around here. Catch you Monday, xo!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

New Release

Book Summary

Cali Stanton has one goal in life, being a doctor. She has spent the last two years helping the less fortunate in Africa. It’s a job she loves and intends to do for the foreseeable future. That is until she receives a call from her father saying he’s been injured and needs her back in Chicago. Less than a week later she finds herself behind her father’s desk at Stanton Enterprises, running the family business…something she never wanted to do. But how could she say no to her father when he insists that she is the only one he can trust?

Matthew Andersen and his brother, Jason, have spent the last two years managing security at Stanton Enterprises. However, someone is determined to take down the company and with it its acting CEO, Cali Stanton.

Cali and Matthew must work together to find out who is behind the threats to not only the company but to Cali herself while they fight their growing attraction for each other. Can they figure out the hidden threat before it’s too late?

Sherri Hayes
Sensual Romance With Heart

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Cover Reveal!!

Landon Holder is exactly the kind of man Livy Adams should stay far away from.

The flashy, flirty star defenseman for the Chicago Buffaloes is known for hooking up with women all over Chicago. Livy finds herself attracted to Landy, but his sexy good looks and charm are irrelevant. She had her heart shattered by a cheating athlete in college, and Livy vows she will never let her judgment lapse like that ever again.

Yet Livy knows she can’t spend the rest of her life focusing on building her jewelry line during the day and her evenings playing TriviaPlayOrPass! on her phone, either. Even though she does have fabulous conversations with a player named Scott, it’s time to get back in the game—in real life. While Livy tries to figure out her career path in jewelry design, she knows it’s time to take a chance on romance again, too.

But in a strange twist of fate, Livy finds herself getting to know Landy on a much deeper level. Sometimes people aren’t always as they appear to be. Just like a diamond, you have to look closely to see true clarity.

As Livy unwraps the layers around Landy to see the man behind the image, will she have a change of heart? Can she leave her past behind for a future with Landy? Or is it all a game of trivial pursuits?

Add Trivial Pursuits to your must read list of Goodreads!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

One Last Thing

 One Last Thing

 Sang Out Loud

Army by Ellie Goulding

Last DIY

Hmm, good question! I guess I'll say setting up my weekly spread in my planner.

Thing I Borrowed

Another good one...! My Aunt's lip gloss

I Was Nervous

Saturday before my cheerleaders performed halftime.

Heard I Love You

Last night, before my dad went to bed!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Valentine' Day Gift Guide | For Him

Another Holiday means another round of gift guides. Men is up first and since I clearly know what men want (that's a lie, I'm a single as single can be). So again, these are ideas of what I would get my potential boyfriend.


Let me know what you are picking up for your main squeeze this V-day & be sure to check out my gift guide for Girls, next Monday. Xo!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Plogging | Week 3

Another week gone, here's what was going on in Week 3 of January!

SoCal Sunday, you know Whole Foods, Chiptole, Trader Joe's, Starbs.

 colorblocking for next week

artsy snap filter.  
follow me on snapchat | blondek18

sneak peek for an upcoming review

pre v-day mani

doggy donut for Zoey 


oldie, but a goodie.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Winter White & Classic Black

I love the idea of mixing white and black in the Winter months. The faux fur jacket, marbled phone case, stiletto bootie, and gorgeous Givenchy bag make this outfit on trend.

Let me know what you pieces you like to mix together. Until tomorrow, xo!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Social Scene with JZ featuring Adrianna Meucci

Today on the Social Scene we get inspired by a fabulous woman, Adriana Meucci. Based out of Bergen County, NJ Adriana has always has had a love for animals. Adriana is an animal advocate, rescue volunteer, and free-lance writer. She has always loved animals since she was a little girl and always felt that they needed a voice to speak for them and protect them. Presently, she is running a social media campaign raising awareness and educating the public about pets as victims of domestic violence and the great need for animals to be allowed on-site of domestic violence shelters. On the podcast we learn all about her and the start of The PAWS Act back in 2014 . 

Adriana has become a strong advocate for the campaign. Meucci really enjoys helping those in need and puts real life struggles into perspective for people who are unfamiliar with how hard life can be at times. 

The PAWS Act provides women facing domestic violence a safe haven for them and their pets.

Adriana continues to inform us on the Social Scene how hard it is for women facing domestic violence to not only get out of their dangerous situation but also being able to get their animals out.

The sad thing is that domestic violence is truly becoming an epidemic. It is not discussed about enough which is why it is so important to get the word out.  On the Social Scene with JZ podcast we want to tell YOU how to get involved . Who doesn't want to help those who suffer with their pets get to a safe haven to go to in time of need?

Be sure to check out the podcast that features Adriana Meucci Social Scene with JZ

 Follow Adriana and Forgotten Victims of Domestic Violence HERE:

Keep up with JZ:

Friday, January 15, 2016

Cancer Makeup Look | Cat Eye & Bold Lip

I wanted to do a makeup look out of my comfort zone so today I bring you a cat eye & a bold lip. I normally am all about a bold lip, but you'll never see me with the cat eye. It's just not something I keep in my makeup back pocket, but today it's what I did and I am in love with the end result! Take a look at what products I used and how I achieved this super easy look!

Products Used

For the eyes | Maybelline The Nudes Palatte

1. Transition color. I used this first and then went in with it anytime I wanted to blend out a harsh line
2. Crease color. I went in with this a few times to build the crease. *Tip: make the first application of the crease color a little harsh and then as the product leaves your brush you can really blend it in small circular motions to deepen the crease.
3. Liner color. I used this as the cat eye color. I used my It Cosmetics liner brush and applied the color on the edge as well as both of the sides of the brush. This helped to make the color as even as I could using a eyeshadow. *Tip: use tape to cut out the line and pick up any excess product
4. Shimmer color. I sprayed some Ulta setting spray on to a eyeshadow brush and then dipped it in the gold shimmer shadow. I applied this to the 2/3 of my inner and middle lid. I wanted something that would help the liner pop.
For the lower lash line, I went back in with color 2 on my It Cosmetics Smugger and applied that under my lashes. 
For mascara, I used the Maybelline One by One Volumizing Mascara in Brown Black and then finished off the eyes with the Smashbox Full Exposure in Black

For the lips | Lorac Pro Matte in Pink Taupe & Ulta Matte Lip Cream in Stirring

I wanted my bold lip to really pop so I started with my favorite matte lippie in a taupe nude. Then I went in with the stunning Ulta matte lip cream lining my lips first with the tip of the brush. Once I finished lining, I went in and covered the rest of the lips with my go to dark lippie.

And then of course, I took a bunch of selfies...!

follow me on snapchat: blondek18

Plogging | Week 2

I don't know about you, but I can't believe we are halfway thru January. Sheesh, 2016 you are already flying by! Happy Friday & enjoy looking back at the week I've had. Until Monday, cheers to the freakin' weekend, xo!

sneak peek at an upcoming blog post

my baby niece Minnie

late nights at the rink are some of the most fun nights

follow me on snapchat: blondek18

reading a paperback...what?

fangirled hard over this #bloggingidol

another sneak peek of a review to come!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Must or Bust | Kisses Chocolate Truffle

Hershey's Kisses Chocolate Truffle

Smell: Chocolate. Just chocolate
Taste: Chocolate, with a hint of bitterness from the dark chocolate at the end. 

I wanted so much more from these. They are described as a dark chocolate outside with a creamy chocolate center. And well they are chocolate kisses, that's about all they are. Even after two, I tasted a hint of dark chocolate, but other than that, meh. I was these are a...


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Snow Day Movies & Popcorn Ideas

While it hasn't really snowed here all winter long, I am craving a curled up on the couch movie day. Here's what I'll watch next time I get snowed in!

Top | Left to Right; Dark Places*, Freaky Friday, The Day After Tomorrow*
Bottom | Left to Right; Divergent*, Clueless, Gone Girl*
*also amazing books!

Now that you have your movies picked out, it's time to get down to the snacks! My favorite go to movie snack is buttered popcorn with Buncha Crunch. It's sweet, it's salty, it's down right delicious. 

Some other combinations that sound amazing:

Kettle Corn with shredded coconut and dark chocolate chips
Lightly buttered popcorn with toffee chips (or broken up Heath bars)
Kettle Corn with cinnamon, roasted pecans, melted white chocolate chips
Lightly buttered popcorn, raisins, and granola

Let me know what movies you'll be watching on your snow day and what's your go to movie snack? Xo!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Red Carpet Style | Golden Globes

For last night's big event, I'm showing you my glam first and then what I would've worn. I absolutely love this glam. With the dramatic kitten eye, loose ballerina top knot, classic red lip, gold nails, and of course, a popping highlight. RCG; globes 2016
Now for my dress, I found this Zac Posen right away. I love the color of it, I think it'd be perfect for this glamourous night. Gold Giuseppe Zanotti's, some slightly over the top jewelry, and a gorgeous unicorn McQueen clutch would make this look complete. 

RCS; golden globes 2016

Think I'd end up on the best dressed list? Let me know who your picks for best & worst dressed are! Xo

Friday, January 8, 2016

Plogging | Week 1

Okay, so that may be the weirdest word you've ever read, but that's what I'm bring you today. Each Friday, I'm going to show you pictures I've taken throughout the week-I'm calling it "plogging" = picture vlogging! Some weeks, I may have a ton of pics, some weeks I may only have a few. But I'm excited to be able to look back and see memories throughout the weeks of the year to come. Today is technically a recap of the past week or so...let me know what you think about this new series. See you Monday, xo!


the only pic I have from NYE!