#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller
The Badge, the Goat, and the Coffee Cup

My good friend, Debbie Macomber, gave me a terrific gift this year–a U.S. Marshal’s badge. (My dad was a town marshal–very different from the U.S. variety) I thought it was a very good replica, but I should have known better. When I emailed Deb to thank her for this thoughtful present, an acknowledgement of how much I love and miss my dad, she replied that it was authentic.

Daughter Wendy and her fiance, Jeremy, donated a goat in my name. I love gifts like that–I really DO have mostly everything, and it’s nice to know someone in need got something that will make their lives easier. Apparently, a goat produces a gallon of milk per day, and this family will be able to make cheese to sell at the market.

Niece/assistant Jenni presented me with another winner–a John Wayne coffee cup. It’s sitting here on my desk now. There’s a picture of Duke on the outside, and inside is my favorite quote from him. “Courage is being scared to death–but saddling up anyway.” Ain’t that the truth? Only a damn fool is never scared–it’s how you deal with the fear that matters.

I got another late start this morning–went to the casino last night, and I’m up a thousand dollars–so I’d better get off this blog, push up my sleeves, and get some work done. As my dad always said, “We’re burnin’ daylight!”

Snow, snow…

And more snow!

The draw is beautiful, and the flakes are coming down fast and furious. Larry is feeding the horses this morning, but I’ll be slogging out to the barn later in the day. Horse care is hard work sometimes, but it’s a chance to be with them, and enjoy their very special energy, so I love it.

Today, I’ll be back to work on “Logan’s Return”, and reading through the manuscript of my October mass market western romance, “The Rustler.”

In the meantime, the first Mojo Sheepshanks book, “Deadly Gamble”, hits the stores today. It was out before, in trade paperback, but now it’s regular paperback. If you haven’t met Mojo, you’re in for laughter, adventure and LOTS of romance. The second Mojo book, “Deadly Deceptions”, hits the stores at the end of February–and it will be a regular paperback original, too. “The Rustler” will be as well.

In England and Canada, today is Boxing Day. I think that’s a nice custom. Plus, it’s a day to recover from Christmas. :) As I understand it, the tradition began with the moneyed classes boxing up their clothes and toys to make room for the new stuff and pass the pleasure on to the less fortunate.

Isn’t that a lovely idea?

Though the term “stick ’em up” is widely used in Western films, it wasn’t actually coined until the 1930’s.