22 July 2012

Hero's Bog: Paden Winters

My problem started when I was about fifteen.  I tried to pretend I was an ordinary guy living an ordinary life, going to high school, worrying about my geometry test and wondering if I would be able to pass my drivers test.  But I wasn’t normal, though many didn’t know what had happened to me five years before, when I had been ten and abducted from school.  My parents tried very hard to keep it all secret from the media.         

Before the abduction, I lived in a bubble, surrounded by loving parents, a privileged life.  My father built yacht’s for a living so I didn’t have to question or think about what it meant to be surrounded by the ocean, by boats and all that went with that lifestyle.  But it all came to a halt the day I was taken by a monster.

For ten months I was locked on a dirty, dingy twenty-four foot sailboat, handcuffed to the table.  Every week we’d travel to another port, pull in and set anchor.  I was told that my parents didn’t want to pay the ransom, and then, later, told they were having trouble raising the money.  Of course, that wasn’t true.  My parents had paid the money right away, but my captor liked having a little boy around and so he kept me.

I was never raped, but what he did was worse.  I was never the same after that.  Just when my old life had started to fade from my memory, someone saw me through an open window and called the police.  I was reunited with my family and though I was happy, but inside me everything had changed.

And that became all too apparent when I began to get interested in girls.  This…thing... inside of me taunted me to cut myself, to cut it out of myself, and so I did.  What followed was years of therapists, institutions, behavior modifications, medicines…it all became too much.  Then one day I read about a new way to treat cutting, by distancing yourself from the trigger.  And so I moved to a place so remote and far reaching that I’d never have to worry about sexual desire again.  And for ten long years I lived alone, isolated except for the briefest moments of human contact.

Until she came and turned my world upside down.  Panthea Snow.  I'd never seen a more beautiful woman.  She released the monster again, and as much as I hated her for that, eventually I came to love her for freeing me from my demon.

{To find out how Panthea Snow saves Paden Winters from the nightmare of his past, pick up LOVE STORY FOR A SNOW PRINCESS here: http://www.bookstrand.com/love-story-for-a-snow-princess }

Thanks so much for visiting with Paden Winters!  To win a free PDF copy of the book, just leave a comment!  Winner will be drawn at random August 1st! (so be sure to leave a way to contact you!).  And please visit the other great authors on the Hero's Hop:

14 July 2012

Healthier Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have a  very picky 5 year old who will eat about six foods, and they don't include any fruits or vegetables.  Anyone who has a child who is a picky eater will know it's like trying to pull teeth to get them to try anything that they don't like.  Actually, it's mission impossible.

So I'm always trying to find new ways to hide nutritious food within something he'll eat.  Like cookies.  I found this awesome recipe that I wanted to share because the cookies were really tasty, and the results I had while making them.

The ingredients are simple:

3 ripe bananas
2 cups rolled oats
1/3 cup applesauce
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. ground flaxseed
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Using a fork, mash the bananas in a bowl.  Stir in oats, applesauce, chocolate chips, flaxseed and vanilla extract.  Mix well.  Drop by rounded spoonful onto a lined cookie sheet.  Bake for 20 mins.


I actually blended the liquid ingredients with the mashed bananas first because it made it easier to really smooth out the bananas.  Then I added the oats and chocolate chips.  On my cookie sheet I used wax paper and this was a BAD IDEA!  The cookie bottoms stuck to the wax paper and I ended up leaving half the cookie behind.  On my next sheet, I sprayed with Pam and they came off smooth as glass.  Also, make sure you ventilate the place because the cooking bananas will smoke a little.

These cookies were delicious!  The chocolate chips were just sweet enough and the consistency was nice and chewy.  I love chewy cookies.  And I didn't feel that guilty for eating them!

The only draw back was my son didn't want to eat them because he said they smelled like pancakes.  When I reminded him he liked pancakes, he informed me that he didn't like pancake cookies.  Cookies, he said, should be round, flat and not bumpy (which these cookies are).   

(I'm not a nutritionist so I can't tell you the calories or the fat content, but I can tell you that these cookies disappeared by the end of the day between me and my boyfriend!)