Welcome Guest – Ruth Logan Herne & Book Giveaway

Ruth Logan HerneI am over-the-moon excited to be over here on Petticoats & Pistols, because that means I’ve had another dream come true:

Ruthy’s writing westerns!

I love western lore, I love the look of a rugged cowboy, and I love Reba McIntyre’s song “Cowgirls Don’t Cry”… And I’m thrilled that Book 1 of the “Double S Ranch” series is releasing on March 15th! Talk about a swoon-worthy hero and cover!

But westerns aren’t just about heroes, although I love ’em… The backbone of the western movement is found in the women who settled there under some unspeakable conditions, the women who still help run the west. They’re the stuff dreams are made of. The ones who stayed back then and help run the heartland today are not shrinking violets. Generally these gals are unafraid to get dirty, and willing to roll up their sleeves and help in the barn before they set a fresh baking of bread.

You only have to do a walking tour of a nineteenth century cemetery to see how many women and children were lost in days of scant medical care and pre-antibiotics.

And still they forged ahead, risking life and limb to open a new land to growing families for a long variety of reasons, many of which lay back east in the smog-filled manufacturing cities. The open air of the west called to them. A land of opportunity, free land! Tempting flyers and newspaper announcements painted a glowing picture, even though the truth of the matter was often quite different.

Back in the SaddleHarsh lands and tough conditions took required health and backbone, and it’s an unfortunate truth that the loss of women in childbirth or to disease opened the door for more western brides. Opportunity sprang from great misfortune, and for each group of wagons bringing worn pioneers back east, more joined the journey west. Mail order brides back then have become the Farmers Only internet brides of today.

The image of the west called to certain types.

Women with a past, and women who thought they had no future. And also women who wanted a say in their future, women seeking the rights of suffrage had fewer men to shout them down on the prairie! And women were of great value on the prairie. Staking, running and keeping a claim wasn’t a one-man job.

The role of women and the claim of suffragists helped forge a different kind of community from the early years of settlement. As communication became easier, women’s voices grew louder, and men began listening because what choice did they have? By the first World War, it became clear that certain rights were undeniable, finally, but FOUR western states had granted women the right to vote decades earlier. Wyoming, Colorado, Utah and Idaho stood strong on the belief that women and men were equal, and raised the bar for an East Coast that had been dickering the subject for nearly six decades. Good for them!

I love creating heroines worthy of that western designation, the distinctive grit that goes hand in hand with a more feminine, nurturing side.

Settling a land isn’t for the faint of heart, that’s true, but when men and women join forces to create an unbreakable bond, amazing things happened then… and now!

Here’s a Peek at Ruth’s new book

When stock market manipulations leave Colt Stafford financially strapped, the oldest son of legendary rancher Sam Stafford returns to the sprawling Double S ranch in Gray’s Glen, Washington. He’s broke, but not broken, and it’s time to check in with his ailing father, and get his legs back under him by climbing into the saddle again.

He doesn’t expect to come home to a stranger pointing a loaded gun at his chest— a tough yet beautiful woman that Sam hired as the house manager. Colt senses there’s more to Angelina Morales than meets the eye and he’s determined to find out what she’s hiding…and why.

Writing westerns is a dream come true for Ruth. 

For a chance to win 1 of 2 copies of Back in the Saddle tell us about a dream

that came true for you.

The book can also be Pre-ordered Here:

Amazon
B&N

About Ruth

Multi-published, bestselling author Ruth Logan Herne loves God, her family, her country, chocolate, coffee and dogs, not always in that order! A country gal with a love for the big city, she is the author of nearly thirty novels and novellas and absolutely loves writing the kind of books she likes to read!

Ruth Loves Hearing from Readers

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Guest Blogger
Updated: February 19, 2016 — 9:38 am

115 Comments

  1. Hi Ruthy!! Being a woman, I can’t imagine the hardships they endured coming out West to tame the land and make a home! Brave souls that paved the way of women today 🙂 Really enjoyed the little history lesson in today’s post. I think I wouldn’t do so well, but I’d sure give it my best shot!

    A dream come true? I can’t ask for more than what God’s blessed me with in life. A loving husband, kids who turned out just fine in spite of my parenting blunders, a cute-as-a-button almost 2 year old grand-girl, good health & all the provisions we need. I didn’t think I’d ever have that, but when I look back at everything in my life, I realize my dreams already came true! Now I want to see my kids dreams come true, whatever that might be for them. That would make me pleased as punch!

    Thank you for the chance to win a copy of “Back in the Saddle”, it’s been on my want-to-read list since I learned of it’s (almost) release! Congrats to you, Ruthy, another sure fire fun read 🙂

    1. Trixi! I am delighted to see you bright and early! Tossing your sweet name into the cowboy hat! And I’m raising the giveaway to TWO books because I can’t let that Connealy woman give away more than me!

      That would be wrong!!!! (I don’t know if things get bolded here, so we’ll see!!!)

      To write modern day westerns has been a dream, and when Love Inspired included me in their Big Sky continuity… and it sold like crazy…. I was hooked.

      Cowboy heroes are different. There’s that rugged quality intrinsic to working huge animals that could crush you in a heartbeat… and the women who stand by their side are a step apart. Love it!

  2. It got bolded, Party at the Petticoat Blog!!!!

  3. I am often amazed by how God grants me the desires of my heart- so many “little” dreams I have had! Whether work or something else, I’m recently often taken aback at how they have come true.

    1. Kristen, isn’t it amazing? And sometimes they’re things we’ve never even given voice to, and yet… they happen. I love that you shared that!

  4. Great blog post. I’ve read a couple of 5 star reviews for Back in the Saddle. The older western times were not easy for the women and their families. I do enjoy the history included.

    God has gifted you to write Ruth and I’m so thankful I’ve discovered your books. I have a few ion my bookshelves.

    God’s blessings as you continue to write for His glory.

    1. Marilyn! Thank you for those kind words! It is truly a gift, passed on through my mother, and I remember that I had no idea she could write until I was a grown-up and found some of her early work, hidden away. The blessing of my books is that my mother knew I wanted to be a published author before she died and asked me to use her name in my writing name… and that’s the Logan side of the family. Thank you for those blessings! I’m sending my own right back to you!

  5. What a great post! Women are unsung heroes or heroines of the west. They were just as important. It was hard times and they survived.

    1. Debra, I agree 100%. I have a series of western novellas (in our Seeker collections) and the reason men fought sometimes to the death over a woman was because a lot of them recognized how narrow the chances of survival were without one. Someone had to know how to take care of food, how to settle a home to at least subsistence levels… And of course, falling love made that all a whole lot nicer!!!

  6. Great post today. It’s hard to imagine everything women had to endure back then.

    1. Janine, we’re such wimps by comparison, LOL! Those women often had great faith to combat their great struggles, but we know a great many came back after months or years of hardship… When I think of what women braved to come to this country back in the 1600’s… and then west, 200 years later… It makes me want to whine less! 🙂

      But even today, women play a huge role on western farms and lands and ranches. The times might have eased in some ways, but the growing size of farms makes them just as vital today. Which means Angelina in the book is PERFECT for handling that house full of stubborn Stafford men!

  7. Hi Ruth,

    Love your books and can’t wait to read this one. Thanks for sharing your gift of writing with us.

    1. Aw, Patricia, you know it’s my honor! AND SO MUCH FUN!!!!!! Is it wrong to be so seriously in love with your job??? Please say no, LOL!

      I am tucking your name into the smokin’ hot cowboy hat!

  8. Having grown up on a dairy farm I love everything cowboys and wild west. I love feisty and strong heroines who could hold their own when they have to and be soft and loving also. My dream came true being able to marry a cowboy. 🙂

    1. Susan, you are Mrs. Cowboy???? Sweet!!!! I’m a farm wife so I know the OTHER side of being on the land, like when it’s our fault for rain/snow/bugs/blight…. 🙂 But like any job there’s good and bad and I’m so glad you two get to face it together! That rare and wonderful woman!

      Did you ever watch the “The Last American Cowboy” series???? I learned so much about the differences between ranching size and crop farming. Great series!!!! If you saw it, does it apply to most ranches do you think?

  9. I love all your books and eagerly wait for each new one!!!!

    1. Donna, thank you! I love this one especially (of course you love all of them as you write them, the stories take on a life of their own) but this one… Waterbrook allowed me to expand the story to include the family and the town and how nothing is really an island and that was such a treat! I hope you love this one/this series, too!

  10. Hey, Ruthy, look at you bein’ all western!
    Welcome to Petticoats and Pistols. I’ve got Back in the Saddle and I can’t wait!!!!!!!

    I was raised on Louis L’Amour books and he treated women with such respect in his books. It was a running theme how tough they were. And how absolutely forbidden it was to hurt a woman.

    He’d say, ‘the most hardened outlaw would never harm a woman, in fact even killers and robbers, foul mouthed and filthy, would step between a woman and trouble. A woman in the west was a rare and wonderful thing.’

    And I just read a L’Amour book that kicks off with a man killing a woman, and then the desperate lengths he goes to to cover it up and as people slowly learn, he becomes reviled, even by the ruthless gunman who ride with him.

    Until Tell Sackett kills him of course. 🙂

    1. Mary, it’s like Old West code, and so much of what I love in the old west is what you describe in your series. The men are men, the women are women, but they’re both likely to jump in and save the other’s skin… and take care of what needs doing on both sides of the prairie shack door!

      That respect for women… I love that. So true!

  11. ps I mean I’ve got Back in the Saddle on pre-order. I do NOT have it yet!

  12. Liar, liar, pants on fire!!!!!

  13. Tell Sackett kills him….

    Well, there it is.

    The code survives. Man was put on this earth to cherish woman. I’m kinda glad our Tell knew that. 🙂

    1. He was (trust me) SUPER MAD!

      1. Well, a woman died. I’d be mad, too! Karate Kick Ruthy + Colt 45 Ruthy

  14. I don’t know that I have a dream come true. But I do have 3 beautiful, smart and talented daughters that God has blessed me with. They are a joy! I love westerns and cannot imagine what women went through in the old west. I have to admit my favorite western author is Louis L’Amour.

    1. Well, he’s the pinnacle, isn’t he, Naomi??? Such a talent and voice! I’d say those daughters are a dream come true in lots of ways, except when they’re brats, of course! 🙂

      And yes, a rugged, testing life. But the thought of that land, all free, for the effort.

      WOW.

  15. Hi Ruth…….welcome to our corner of the world! We’re very happy to have you. What a great subject. Women on the frontier had a great many trials, loneliness probably the biggest part. But they did what they had to do. I imagine all women back then were fueled by a dream. And men were very protective. In the book I’m writing a cowboy marries a woman sight unseen just to give her baby a name. And he becomes so fiercely protective of both.

    Wishing you great success with your books! I love the cover of Back in the Saddle!! That rugged man and his horse…draws me immediately.

    1. Linda, thanks for the welcome! And you’re right about the loneliness, I think there was probably a good many women who never made it off the prairie because the mental health issues were quite real…

      I love your story line! That’s marvelous! We love a protective, caring man, one who goes the distance.

      Kelly Howard and the Waterbrook crew did an amazing job on the cover. It really captures Colt’s persona, that he is still a cowboy first… And even coming home under a cloud is still coming home.

  16. Welcome,,what a interesting post,,i love westerns too,,my dream came true when i married my second husband over 12 yrs ago,,i had been in an abusive marriage for 30 yrs,since i was 17 yrs old,,got my kids raised and graduated and then i left,,never thought i could trust another man,,i thought all men cussed and screamed and beat their wives,,then i found my husband who has barely raised his voice in all these years,,never have i any fear of being hit,,he is my knight in shining armour and my dream come true,,this is the way marriage is supposed to be,not keeping the kids out of the house busy with stuff so we wouldnt have to go home,,home now is the place i dont want to leave and it is a very good feeling

    1. God bless you, Vickie. I’m so thrilled for you that you got out of that situation. And found a way to make your dream come true.

    2. Vickie, I am so sorry you had to go through that. Dreadfully sorry, and I can totally understand why you thought you were done with men… And what a blessing to have such a nice, loving relationship now!

      You know life is so complicated, and we tend to know what we live and don’t always realize that there are choices out there.

      I’m so glad you’re here today! Thank you for taking the time to stop over!

  17. Can hardly wait to read your book as I was asked to do some research for it. Lol. City bred but farm girl at heart. A dream come true for me would be to meet you in person and spend time on your farm.

    1. Yvonne, head East, LOL! I loved that you were able to answer those questions for me, and that when I got to central Washington I felt solid… and was able to visit Cle Elum and Ellensburg and see the hills before last year’s wildfires.

      The PNW is gorgeous, and so different from the deciduous woods of the Northeast, so that was fun to see! And so many nice people! AND MAPLE BARS AT THE CLE ELUM BAKERY!!!!

      I must send them some books! 🙂

      Thank you for your advice, Yvonne!!!

  18. My dream come true.
    I actually give a speech on this very topic.
    Because the fact that I am a published author today is my dream come true. AND IT TOOK FOREVER!!! So much endurance. So much hard work. And the fact that it happened. FINALLY HAPPENED!

    It’s still a wonder and an honor. I remember someone saying to me, after I received my first contract, “What are you hoping for next?”
    And I said, “I want a career. A writing career.”
    And I remember almost flinching at the NERVE. How did I ever find the boldness to suggest I might have a career in writing???
    And now I have it.
    My dream came true.
    Hard work.
    Accepting rejection and sometimes brutal criticism.
    Heading back in and doing it all again and again and again.

    The only reason I can fathom why I kept at it all those years was….I just loved to write. I loved it. And published or not, I never wanted to quit.

    1. Mary and I are in complete agreement on this. I love what I do. When I see authors complain, I cringe because we are sitting in the seat that so many would love to hold!

      I love the crazy scheduling, I love it when someone needs me to do something ASAP and I do it… and they’re so happy! 🙂

      Like Mary, this was my dream through all the nametag and hairnet jobs of raising 6 children and sending them off to school…. I wouldn’t trade any of it (even 25 years of working two jobs) because it gave me the inside track on so many industries that I can incorporate information into a story because I did it, lived it, tried it, experienced it! And got paid!

      🙂

      I am truly living the dream. With a bunch of kids, grandkids, a couple of dogs, coffee and chocolate!

  19. Colt sounds like he’s going to have to do some fast talking to get along with feisty, ranch manager Angelina! What an introduction.

    Dream which came true- college education, married almost 39 years, four children, 2.5 grandchildren ( my daughter is due in June) and I escaped the bitter cold Wisconsin winters.

    Best wishes for continued success with your writing.

    1. Laurie, either that or typical cowboy silence and grunts, LOL! Poor Colt, he’s like the classic poor little rich boy… except that it was truly a poor little rich boy story!

      I could just hug him! 🙂

  20. I love stories with strong women. I want to see what she is hiding too. Part of me has always wanted to live on a ranch. Another part of me wonders if I have what it takes. I live my dreams through books.

    1. Jan, you must read it and see and tell me what you think! I love the pre-readers’ reactions, it’s gotten great reviews and I love that they’re letting me tell ALL THREE STORIES. 🙂 I love a series!!!!

      And I know what you mean, I see shows about ranch women now and again (here and in B.C. and Australia) and it’s a different life… and I hope I’d rise to it, but in the meantime you and I can live vicariously! YES!

    2. Well, ranch life doesn’t HAVE to be hard, Jan. Only if your husband makes you go outside and help. Surely you could duck that!

      1. BURST OUT LAUGHING!!!!!!!!

  21. Avatar

    Hello everyone…I have not read many westerns but did find a new author to me William Blackstone who is deceased but his books live on and I read some for Christmas. I am anxious to read Ruth’s new book. I know whatever she sets her mind to will be great endeavor.

    1. Aw, Pauline!!! Thank you for that vote of confidence, and you’ll have to tell me what you think, okay? I hope you love it. I know I do.

    2. Pauline I hope you check back in. I went to Amazon to see what William Blackstone wrote and all that came up was Commentaries on the Laws of England…which as a Louis L’Amour reader I have heard of.
      So is that name wrong or is there another William Blackstone and could you give me a title? I’m always looking for good westerns.

  22. Great post, Ruthy. I would never have made it as a woman in that day. But I’m thankful for how they helped changed the world!

    1. Hahahahahahhahahahahah!
      Hahahahahahahahahahahaha!

      Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!

      I think you’re selling yourself short, but I do think (Now, I could be wrong, my Southern Belle friend!!!) that most settlers came from the Mid-Atlantic and the North…. The ones that made it, that is, LOL!

      I’m kidding, who knows what we would have done for love???? And with God at our right hand and a shot gun over the mantle… Life goes on!

      Thank you for coming over here. Did you bring spurs???

      1. Missy and Ruthy, I always wonder if I’d’ve come through and been a survivor of the frontier, if I’d have needed to do it.

        I like to think I’d make it…but if I did, it’d be a surprise to everyone.

        Signed,
        Mary “The Air-conditioning Wimp’ Connealy

        1. You know, we’d all like to think we could… And then we’d probably fall apart like a bunch of little flower blossoms… Which means we have to work harder to be true Steel Magnolias!!!

  23. Ruth, this is such a rousing speech!! Very William Wallace’ish!

    I am woman. Hear me roar! 🙂

    1. I love William Wallace!!!! (runs to watch Braveheart!!!!!)

  24. Can’t wait to read Ruthie’s latest. Everything she writes is gold to me. A dream coming true? My own book finally getting published.

    1. Patti, that will be my dream come true for you, too!!!! 🙂 And what a nice thing to say, thank you! Did you bring food? Don’t disappoint me, Patti!!!!

      Tucking your name in!

  25. Sounds like a wonderful series. For me it’s having two wonderful daughters that have grown into two wonderful women!

    1. Catslady, I hear you, and that was my first job… to raise those six kids and see them successfully launched and then to write sweet books. God and I made a deal, that if he gave me enough time on the planet, I’d do my part and the rest would be up to publishers, and with years of rejections, I just kept on believing and writing… so this full-length series is like “The Dream Continues To Get Better and Better!”…. Raising those kids, though, that was priority one.

    2. No Peach Crisp, Catslady?

      (Sniffle)

      1. Peach cobbler would do!!!!

  26. Nothing big has come true for me yet, but I have dreams aplenty… 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hang in there, Colleen, and don’t stop dreaming! And working hard toward making those dreams come true!

    2. I agree with Mary… and sometimes it’s the little dreams that when woven together become the big picture. And the big picture becomes the dream come true!

  27. Great post, Miss Ruthy. I didn’t know four western states allowed women to vote early on. So now we know how the west was REALLY won!

    And by the way, I was fortunate enough to read an ARC of Back in the Saddle. LOVE IT! and cannot wait to revisit the ranch and your delicious cowboys–and gals. When’s book two coming?

    1. Linda, I won’t swear it, but I think Wyoming was the first nation to give women the right to vote. Isn’t that interesting? Now why Wyoming? I love it that the west figured it out first.
      So many interesting facts about the west.
      I read about a black, woman mailman who just lived the toughest life and was so universally beloved…it might’ve been in Wyoming or Montana. Very inspirational. And she drove a mail coach and could hook them up to the wagon and switch out for fresh horses so fast no one could even get there to help her.

    2. Linda, isn’t that cool to know? I love that the backwoods areas were the forward-thinking states that recognized the need for equality, and I wonder if that’s because those states didn’t have the big barons of the 19th century, Carnegie, Rockefeller, Morgan… it was more by their whits that they built their towns and villages and cities, (with some help from lumber barons out of Wisconsin and Minnesota) but I bet that made a difference.

      And thank you again for reading Back in the Saddle and endorsing it! Supper’s on me! 🙂

  28. My husband and I went to Kenya on a mission trip. Although it wasn’t something I dreamed of doing I knew it was what God was calling me to do. As I visited village after village I would pause reflect for a moment. No electric, cell phones, bathrooms or even running water. It was like a dream because I could see was God’s creations, not man’s.

    1. Sue, Kenya. Wow, I had a sister who lived for a year in Ghana helping two older woman create a language for this … she didn’t call them tribes and they weren’t nomadic… maybe Language Group is the right term. These people had their own language, never written down. So Wycliffe Bible Translators are all over the world, living in villages like this, learning the language, then figuring out a way to write the language, then teaching people to read the language and only THEN translating a Bible into that language. It’s a project with the goal of treating these people with respect by giving their language respect. It can take up …. well, I think the older woman working with this group had been there 25 years and were just finally in the Bible translation phase.
      Wycliffe had thousands of groups like this all over the planet.

    2. Sue, that’s so profound. We are so accustomed to having what we have, that we’re physically removed from the reality of probably 90% of the world.

      I have a grandson who was born in Ethiopia, a beautiful 8 year old boy who is just full of life, and we are so blessed to have him here! But I know when his parents went to pick him up from the children’s home, the pronounced differences from our normal were sharp.

      And Mary, I love that they worked to translate the Bible that way. I remember a Tlingit Indian saying last year that his people weren’t allowed to pray or sing in their language, that the missionaries to Alaska made them learn everything in English and it wasn’t until the Salvation Army came into town that they were welcomed with love and the Army translated the hymns into the Tlingit language… That made such an impression on me, how off-putting it must be when we have to have everything our own way.

  29. got to go to AK with my DH

    1. AK? You mean Alaska? Wow, Sallie. I hope I get to do that someday. I’m getting old, I’m kicking things off my bucket list left and right!

      1. Sallie, our kids gave us an Alaskan cruise last year, and it was the trip of a lifetime. We loved the cruise, we loved going inland, we visited the Klondike and learned lots of cool stuff! The only think I wished we’d been able to do would be to explore British Columbia for a day, but that wasn’t on the docket. We did stay an extra day, though and I rented a car and went into Kittitas County/Central Washington! I got to visit Cle Elum (Gray’s Glen is loosely based on Cle Elum) and Ellensburg, and to see the visuals I described in the book, and I was so delighted to be there! We loved seeing WA but we were in love with the Inside Passage of Alaska and seeing fjords, towns, just a whole different way of living.

  30. Ruthy, Is the Double S Ranch series contemporary or historical? Although women supposedly have equal rights these days, I still think as ranching as being male dominated. I would love to read Back in the Saddle. Please throw my name into the handsome cowboy’s hat. Thanks!

    1. It’s contemporary, Dawn.
      (Ruthy will come charging in here to correct me if I’m wrong)
      Ranching is male dominated to an extent because so much of it just takes sheer brute strength, but woman can do a lot of the jobs. (Too many unfortunately)

    2. Contemporary, Dawn, it’s totally today. Almost straight off the news presses today! 🙂

      But I’ve done some historical Western novellas, too, for Barbour and the indie market, and I love working on them.

      The West beckons….

  31. Nice to meet you, Miss Ruthy. Thank you for the good post.

    My dream was to be a gramma. I will say I am living the dream. We have thirteen wonderful grandchildren; they’re all my favorite. I am so blessed beyond reason.

    Glad you’re living your dream.

    1. Wow, Rosie, you overachieved on that dream? 😀

    2. ROSIE!!!!!!! I love this so much! I love having grandkids, it’s such a joy and I get to have so much fun with them, and their parents are all adorable! Congratulations to you!!!

  32. (Mary only has FOUR so far, Rosie, she’s a little jealous I think…)

    GO ROSIE!!!!

  33. Mary, I’ll go to Alaska with you.

    Pick a date, honey.

  34. I have really enjoyed reading the blog posts here. When I was a young girl I dreamed of marrying a minister and working with him in a church but that dream didn’t happen. But guess what…my daughter did the very thing that I had dreamed of for myself. God sure does know what He is doing. This book sounds so good. Thanks for a chance to win a copy. I know I will love it when I get the opportunity to read it.

    1. Stella, I love that name! I need a heroine named Stella… I know several little, tiny, adorable Stellas and Evelyns. I love seeing beautiful old names coming back in style! YES!!!

      How fun that your daughter is living what you dreamed, and it’s funny how that happens, isn’t it??? God does know what he’s doing, and he makes me laugh!

      Thank you for your kind words, and for taking the time to stop over! I appreciate it, Stella!

  35. I feel that having dreams come true and being blessed are the same thing. My blessings come from our Lord.. I live in the mountains of Western North Carolina, which some people call God’s country. I love western stories, but never had to desire to go west. My Mom and Dad both lived where their parents made a trip to town once a month, they were farmers. When my parents were married they rode horses into Tennessee in a snow storm with the snow pushing the bottom of the horses stomachs. She said the house they moved into had been newly built but when it snowed they would wake up with snow on their pillows… I feel very blessed to have had the parents I did.. I loved my in-laws too… And having the family I have is a dream come true… We have three beautiful daughters …three devoted son-in-laws and five fantastic grandchildren! What more could you ask for. Blessings!!

    1. Oh, Loretta, I agree. Family first, and remember when Bing Crosby sang about counting your blessings in White Christmas??? “When you’re worried and you can’t sleep, just count your blessings instead of sheep….”

      There’s always so much to be grateful for!

      Can you imagine waking with snow on your pillows??? Who laid that roofing tile, LOL! It sounds like a wonderful family, Loretta! Thank you for taking the time to stop by!

  36. I love westerns and I can’t wait to read this one. I guess my dream come true was to have a child and God blessed me with a son who as ture out to be a fine young man.

    1. Quilt Lady!!!! What kind of quilts do you make? My buddy Judy Smith and Susanna Smith both make beautiful quilts I see on facebook… what a talent!

      We’re tucking your name into the cowboy hat and thank you for stopping by!

  37. Ruthie,
    A statue sits in Vandalia, Illinois. A pioneer woman has baby in one arm, toddler clinging to her dress, food, books, & things she would have been responsible for around her feet. My favorite, though us the rifle held closely beside her.
    Your description made me think of that statue, which has always fascinated me. I think too many of us envision Caroline Ingalls from the television show.
    Our history books don’t give enough credit to these remarkable women, so thank you for writing a story that does.

    1. Georgia, I totally agree! While I love the protective instincts of a strong man and beloved, I’m a big proponent of women learning whatever skill is needed to protect themselves and their family and feed their family if necessary.

      You didn’t have to be Annie Oakley, but gosh, shrinking violets were hard pressed to survive out on the prairie or in the mountains. What a good point, and I would love that statue, too!

      In Omaha there’s a pioneer park, filled with life size sculpted wagon trains, and the looks on their faces, the reality of WALKING cross country, and that all your worldly goods, plus your family is contained in a wagon.

      What courage and hope stirred those feet! Amazing!

    2. Look at this! here’s your statue Georgia!

      Madonna of the trail
      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madonna_of_the_Trail
      There are twelve of them strung out across the country! So wonderful. I need to see which one’s closest to me. I think they are all different!

  38. My dream come true was being able to adopt 4 kids (at different times) after we lost our 7 month old and not able to have more. Now they’re 28, 29, 30 and 34!

    1. Melody, you went through the heartbreak of all heartbreaks. I am so sorry. But I’m so thrilled that you guys were able to open your hearts and homes to 4 kids and make them your own.

      God bless you, you have an amazing story!

  39. My dream come true was to be a mom. After struggling through many miscarriages over 5 years, God blessed us with 3 children. Many years have past, my first born son will be a Senior next year (where did the time go?), and I am amazed at how God fulfilled my dream and also at how I couldn’t imagine it being any better.

    1. Oh, Heather… I hear you loud and clear on this. I ended up with my big family, but only because we weathered multiple miscarriages, too… and your heart just breaks. I think when you’ve had to walk that particular tightrope, two things happen… You can never kind of relax and enjoy pregnancy the way some do, because you steel yourself against what can go wrong… and you understood maybe a little more fully what a miracle each child is because you’ve seen the dark side of the moon.

      I am in total agreement on this! My kids give me/us such joy, such laughter. Thanks be to God!

  40. That my hubby and I when we retired recreated our transfer drive from Florida to Alaska 40 years later and took a 6 weeks car trip to redo it. He has been with me as such a loving support when we went through some tragedies. He is the love of my life and am so happy that my dream of a loving loyal husband came through and that he survived the Vietnam War even though now he struggles with it. I am very blessed.

    1. Mary, what a celebration that drive must have been!!! Talk about a cross-country excursion! WOW! I can imagine seeing things that changed, things that didn’t, and the sheer beauty of the land.

      AWESOME EXPERIENCE TOGETHER!!!!

      And the fact that you weathered life together and didn’t fall apart… isn’t that the testimony of true love? Love endures. Love never fails.

  41. Ruth…I’m excited to get your new book in my hands ??? Thank-you Sweet Lady

    1. Elizabeth, me too!!! I hope you love it, I am absolutely delighted with it, with the whole series!!!! HAPPY DANCING!!!

  42. Ruthy, my love! So good to see you at P&P!!! You know I am in love with this book and the cover!
    My dream come true??? That I’m a grandma!!!! I wanted to be one for a long time and I finally became one 4 years ago…now I have 2 granddaughters and they are the joy of my life, even though they live in a different state! LOVE THEM!!!!

    1. Valri, isn’t it so fun???? I love doing things with the grands, I love making memories with them, I love that they’re such a delightful bunch of cute goofs! It’s downright amazing!

  43. I am looking forward to reading your books. Yay another new to me author!!
    My whole life has been a dream come true. I have a wonderful husband of 52 years, four great children, 7 grandchildren, 4 step grandchildren and 4 step great grand children!

    1. CONNIE!!!!!!

      That is awesome! How fun!!!! And to look at your life as a dream come true, that’s exactly how I see it.

      Life hands out wrinkles. Grief happens. But when you look at the whole, it’s such an amazing ride, so filled with choices! Good for you and I hope you love this book!

  44. My parents were city folks who left Vancouver, BC in the 1960s, to buy property and built a home on a remote lake in the Cariboo wilderness. They weren’t really pioneering but it was a huge change of lifestyle for them. I loved visiting them there and always dreamed of living like that, or at least living rurally, but my hubby’s ministry took us to various cities and towns. Just before he retired, however, we found an affordable place, not exactly out in the country, but on a small acreage surrounded by trees. It’s peaceful and private, and the realization of a dream for us. I hope we can manage to live out our days here. 🙂

    1. Carol, was it up in the Klondike? We went to Caribou Crossing when we were on our Alaskan trip last year, and I fell in love with the tininess of everything in such a vast land. (I mean mountainous VAST land….) And Carcross and Emerald Lake… And the absolutely amazing taxidermy museum there at the Caribou Crossing. Breathtakingly beautiful, all of it, but so remote…

      I love that your life guided you in different directions, though, then brought you back to a compromise place. Think of the lives you’ve touched and those that have touched you!

      Wonderful.

  45. I am so glad having a class reunion let me know we had an author in our midst! I have enjoyed delving into the lives of the people you create in your books can’t wait to read your next adventure!

    1. Deb, isn’t it fun to see all the cool stuff we can do??? I love this! And thank you so much for reading them, I’m so glad you like them! That just makes my day!

  46. sad to say but I don’t have dreams only nightmares.

    1. Kim, I’m so sorry to hear that. My mind doesn’t shut off at night, either, so I have nightmares, too but come the light of day I chase them off… because each day has such promise. A chance to do good, be a better me.

      But I don’t like the nightmares, either!

  47. Having a wonderful husband & 2 great kids – it’s not a dream-it’s my Blessing! Thank you for the giveaway for your readers – looks like a good read! Have a Blessed day!

    1. Wenona, you’re welcome! I’m so glad you stopped by, and yes, a wonderful family, healthy kids. Gosh, we’re blessed!

  48. Wow, a ranch story set in Central Washington. I’ve been waiting for someone to set a “western” here since we have many farms and ranches and a “cowboy” life style as strong as Montana or Wyoming. We just happen to be a little closer to a metropolitan area since Seattle is only three hours away from most of the range areas of Central and Eastern Washington, and Spokane is the biggest city between Minneapolis and Seattle.

    The CleElum Bakery just off from Interstate 90—-We always have to stop there. Such great food!! Torchetti, maple bars, breads of all kinds, yum.

    1. I’m so glad you stopped by!!! Cle Elum was exactly as I imagined it would be, and the folks there were so nice! Dave and I stopped at the bakery, and at a convenience store, and the maple bars were to die for… so I gave them a shout out in the book!

      I love your section of the country. The deep greens, the craggy peaks, the rolling hills, the broad valley…. And I could just picture the Double S cattle, fattening up along the valley’s edge. I’m so glad you like the setting, and I’d love to hear from you after you read the book… I felt like I got it right, but the proof is in the pudding when locals read it! And how funny is it that I live twenty-five minutes from I-90 HERE, almost to the East coast! We’re almost neighbors!!!

      1. I-90 cuts our farm in half in Adams County about 1 1/2 hours east of Ellensburg. In this area if you see trees you know someone has been irrigating them. Sage brush and grass are our native habitat.

  49. Dream that came true for me – (plus hard work) I teach school in the elementary school I attended as a child. I knew when I was a child I’d come back there to teach. I’ve been teaching 3rd grade there for 32 years and still going strong. Every day is a joy and a challenge.
    susanlulu@yahoo.com

    1. Susan, I love teachers and librarians and police. I love the homespun normalcy of jobs that create the opportunities for advancement we all love for our children.

      THANK YOU!!!!!!

  50. One of my dreams that came true was tracking my mom’s family’s history from where her father was born in Indian Territory but orphaned by six years old. It took years and many research trips starting in Oklahoma and then searching records to move back through time to where they ended up being in Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, and finally to the first family settler in Penna. in the late 1600s. Putting that story together was also something that meant a lot to my mom and her sisters and brother, also easing some of the distance between the siblings while they were still all alive. I’d always been interested in the people who struck out to start new lives in what were new worlds to them, but to find it in my own family? A dream come true.

    Another dream come true was living in Scotland for a year. But that’s a story for another time.

    1. Eliza, I love that story! And I’ll enjoy the Scotland excursion, too!

      The rigors and challenges those folks faced make us wimps by comparison, so when I want to draw on that intrinsic strength, I look backward to go forward. This sounds like a great story! My husband’s paternal family came over in 1635, two brothers, the only ones that emigrated with his surname, so that means all the Blodgetts are related… How cool is that to know???

      And my paternal grandmother’s family links back to the Soule family in the early 1600s, and then moved forward from there.

      And interspersed were many newer immigrants and born Americans.

      I love looking back!!! So nice to meet you!

  51. Ruth, I have read your books for years and enjoyed them. I am certain This new series will be as enjoyable as the others.

    My initial “Big Dream” was to join the Peace Corps. I knew the day I heard President Kennedy’s speech when he proposed it that it was something I had to do. That was in high school. It took several years, finishing high school and college, before I qualified, but my junior year of college I applied and was accepted for their early training program. I did my initial training the summer between my junior and senior year, then finished school. I left for my final training and assignment overseas 4 weeks after I graduated. For a small town girl who had never been away from home, I attended the local university, it was quite a leap. It was an adventure and an experience that I will never forget. The most rewarding 3 years I could have spent.

    1. Oh, that is such a wonderful story Patricia…. I can totally see the dream of a girl become the reality of a young woman. And what an eye opener! There are stories there!!!!
      And yes, the reward of that time spent is immeasurable… As Mastercard would say: PRICELESS!

  52. I look forward to reading your new book

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