This is a repost from July, 2012. With the holiday weekend and my company, I failed to get a new post up. Enjoy!

Last time I told you about visiting the Arabia Steamboat Museum. During the tour I was enchanted by one tiny item. Not gold or diamonds or beautiful venetian glass. Discovered wrapped in wool and tucked at the bottom of a carpenter’s tool box was a porcelain or china doll only three inches tall – a Frozen Charlotte.

Manufactured from 1950-1920, the Frozen Charlotte dolls ranged in size from less than 1” to more than 18”. The one found on the Arabia had painted bonnet strings in a color similar to the garters to the left.

If your grandmother had a bathing baby doll in a little porcelain tub—that’s a type of Frozen Charlotte.

The doll was named for a popular American Folk Ballad, Fair Charlotte, which tells of a young girl (Charlotte) who froze to death on a sleigh ride because she refused to dress warmly. The Frozen Charlotte appeared as everything from a charm in a Christmas Pudding to the inhabitant of a doll house to the pampered favorite possession of many little girls.

Since our visit to the museum, I think of the Frozen Charlotte on the Arabia at odd moments. Who was it meant for? Was a hard-working carpenter who’d been earning money back East bringing a gift for his daughter in St. Joseph? Or perhaps a litle girl had wrapped her favorite doll in a bit of wool blanket and hid it at the bottom of her daddy’s tool box as a momento, a reminder that she was waiting for him at home.


A Wildflower Welcome to LENORA WORTH


Leave a comment for a digital copies of the series! Drawing will be on Sunday.

Let’s rodeo. Rodeos have been around since the mid-1800s and the story goes that this even was actually started November 27 LenoraHeadshot2015 (2)when two cowboys in Colorado got in an argument and claimed bragging rights on which one was the best at their jobs on the ranch. Things have changed with the rodeo since that first competition but one thing remains the same.

We all love cowboys.

And cowboys haven’t changed all that much. They still live by a time-honored tradition of doing the right thing, treating women with respect, standing up for a buddy and working hard to do a day’s work. The cowboy code is as strong today as it was when the west was won.

That’s why I was both excited and challenged when my friends Lisa Mondello and Margaret Daley invited me to be a part of the Rodeo Knights contemporary novella series. We sat down together at RWA a couple of years ago and began the process of plotting these books and talking about (read—training Lenora) on how to get them published independently as e-books.  Lisa and Margaret have already ventured into the independent publishing world but I was a true greenhorn. But they were patient with me and offered up a team of people to walk me through the process of setting up accounts and learning all about the Indie market. The result is my novella “One Knight in Vegas.”

November 27 rOne Knight in Vegas (2)

This three book series is about three brothers who grew up in the rodeo in Montana.  Their family helped create a major rodeo circuit and they have all been involved in the rodeo in some capacity. My hero is Sean Knight. He’s a veterinarian who puts the animals first, so when they discover someone is sabotaging the circuit by trying to harm and kill rodeo animals, they set out to find out the truth.  When the circuit travels to the finals in Las Vegas, Sean is called in to help stock contractor and ranch owner Cella Cassidy try to save one of her prized broncs that has been poisoned.

I loved writing this story and I loved doing the research on modern day rodeos. I was a bit nervous about getting the details right so I ordered the book “Fried Twinkies, Buckle Bunnies & Bull Riders” by Josh Peter. I also read a lot of articles online to learn more. Then I had a nice telephone interview with a friend’s brother who is a retired rodeo rider. His name is Terry Holland and he is a true Texas gentleman. He also has a book about the rodeo life titled “What A Ride”. It’s a great account on rodeo life. He was a helpful source.

November 27 Rodeo Knights ad1 (2)


If you like reading rodeo-themed stories, I hope you’ll check out our series. We’re having fun with the Knight brothers. We hope you’ll have fun reading their stories. To celebrate, I’m giving away one set of the entire series. So post here and let’s talk rodeo!

The entire Rodeo Knights series is available now at the following online locations:

(Also available at Google Play and Barnes and Noble Nook Press.)

Karen’s Winner!

Click Cover to Order

Congratulations to Susan P.

Susan has another reason to give thanks today. She’ll be receiving a copy of Jolene Navarro’s A Texas Christmas Wish to enjoy as the season approaches.

May we all give thanks to the Giver of all blessings today and throughout the year.

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;

His love endures forever.

~Psalm 118:29~

Happy Thanksgiving!


May your stuffing be tasty.
May your turkey be plump.
May your potatoes and gravy
Have nary a lump.

May your yams be delicious
and your pies take the prize,
and may your Thanksgiving dinner
stay off your thighs!

-Author unknown

Happy Thanksgiving from All of Us!

Available for preorder

Calico Spy V3

Someone is killing off the Harvey Girls and undercover Pinkerton detective Katie Madison hopes to find the killer before the killer finds her—or before she burns down the restaurant trying.



We Have Two Winners, One for a Free E-Book give-away and the Other for a copy of the Tradepaper of BLACK EAGLE

bannerYes, we have two winners.  Once again do you hear the trumpets announcing congratulations?

Those winners are:  Elaine Breault for the free ebook copy of BLACK EAGLE and Melissa Morr for the Tradepaper copy of BLACK EAGLE.  Yea!  Many congratulations to the winners.

Elaine and Melissa, please contact me personally at karenkay(dot)author(at)earthlink(dot)net.  Insert (.) for (dot) and @ for (at).  Melissa, I will need a physical address to send the book to you, and Elaine, if you could let me know the kind of e-reader you have, I can get that to you right away.

Please let me take this time to say a hearty thank- you to all who came to the blog today and left a comment.  THANK YOU!  And may you all please have a warm and wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.

BLACK EAGLE, on sale now at


Lenora Worth Comes Two-Stepping Into the Junction!

One Knight in VegasMiss Lenora Worth is dancing this way and will arrive on Friday, November 27, 2015!

I’m so excited to have her. This talented lady loves cowboys and rodeos and everything about modern westerns.

She has a brand-spanking new book out that you’re gonna love!

And, she has books to give away too! Can’t beat that.

Get over here come Friday and see what the excitement’s about.

A Thanksgiving Recipe and Book Giveaway!!!

Photo Credit: StGrundy via Compfight cc
Photo Credit: StGrundy via Compfight cc

I know we’re all busy with holiday preparations, so I’m going to keep today’s post short and sweet. And the sweet is quite literal. In honor of the best eating holiday around, I thought I’d share my mother’s recipe for my favorite Thanksgiving dish – Candied Yams. Mmmmmm. They are so good. I never quite get mine to taste as good as hers, but they’re close enough to thoroughly enjoy.

Candied Yams

Wrap 5 large Red Garnet Yams in foil (poke a few vent holes with a short knife in each) and bake in a 400 degree oven until soft (about 1 to 1 1/2 hours). Let cool.

(Red Garnet Yams are much better than sweet potatoes, but if you can’t find them, sweet potatoes will work, too.)

candied yams
Unfortunately, I don’t have a picture of my mom’s yams, but this one came the closest. They won’t be syrupy, though. Just buttery and candied around the edges.

Unwrap yams, remove skin, and slice lengthwise into thin, oblong strips about 1/4 inch thick. Lay flat in a shallow baking dish (jelly roll pans work great), fitting them close together so almost no pan is visible. You will probably need at least 2 pans. Sprinkle generously with brown sugar. Drizzle (or spoon) melted butter over the yams until all the sugar is moistened. Bake in a 400 degree oven again until yams get dark (sticky and candied) around edges (usually 45-60 minutes).

Use a metal spatula to remove yams. Serve in a shallow dish.

Old-fashioned. Simple. And delicious!

Click Cover to Order
Click Cover to Order

The other sweet I’m offering today is a free book. WooHoo!!! Who doesn’t love a great Christmas story to curl up with around the holidays?

I had the honor of meeting author Jolene Navarro at a library event in the small Texas town of Llano. I snatched up a copy of her latest release, A Texas Christmas Wish, knowing all of my Petticoats & Pistols friends would love the chance to win a signed copy.

So, to enter for a chance to win, simply leave a comment about your favorite Thanksgiving dish.

Have a blessed day tomorrow with family and friends. May your hearts be filled with gratitude and your bellies be filled with delicious food.



BLACK EAGLE — New Release and Free Give-Away

bannerHowdy to another Tuesday!

Sometimes I wish I had a way to play trumpets on the blog because today is the release day of BLACK EAGLE.  Yea!  (Pretend you hear music with trumpets.)  Today BLACK EAGLE is released in both ebook and Tradepaper format.  Also today, I’m giving away a copy of the ebook BLACK EAGLE to some lucky winner and a copy of the Tradepaper of BLACK EAGLE to another lucky winner.  All you have to do is leave a comment, but please see the rules below (in my bio) for the rules that govern the drawing.

A couple of words about the drawing — these are also covered in the rules that govern the drawings here at Petticoats and Pistols.  You must be 18 or older to enter. The drawing applies only to US residents and is void where prohibited.  Please remember that in order to win, if you are the winner, you will not know it unless you check back tomorrow evening to see who are the winners.  This is important, because we don’t contact the winners at Petticoats and Pistols — so please, please check back tomorrow.  It breaks my heart to draw a name and then never hear from the person.  Instructions will be given when I announce the winner tomorrow on how to claim your prize.  You must contact me, okay?  So please do check back tomorrow evening.











Since the book is just out, I thought I’d leave you with a bit of an excerpt.  This excerpt is from the beginning of the book.






Kathryn’s Winner!

The Gunslinger and the HeiressCongratulations to Kim A!

After Kim commented yesterday I drew her name from my Stetson (actually I used an online name generator Wink) . She won the free copy of my book – The Gunslinger and the Heiress which is packaged as a “two for one” with Bronwyn Scott’s Playing the Rake’s Game.

Kim — if you will send me your snail mail address I will get it in the mail to you!

            kathryn at kathryn albright. com 

Thank you to everyone who participated! I so enjoy getting to know you better.

Have a lovely Thanksgiving!