A Bit of a Rant ~ Gluten Free

Hey, all. It seems like forever since I’ve been here or anywhere for that matter. I hate to tell you I’m going to rant just a bit, not so much as a complaint but so that those of you who can’t have gluten are aware.

Due to a family issue, we’ve spent quite a bit of time at the hospital. Like all day for several days. One thing I’ve discovered, at least as far as our hospital is concerned, they’re not gluten free friendly.

All their fried foods are cooked in the same oil, even their fish, so if you’re allergic to fish you can’t eat the fries.

The salad bars contain pasta and too often the spoons are transferred from one tray to the next.

The available entrees contained soy sauce, which you have to be careful of because most soy sauces contain gluten.


Sooo, there you have it, my little rant. But seriously, this is more about being aware of what’s available and where the contamination can occur. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.


Monday Meet: A True Sharpener

27f99abfe41b0a8c0b12a0.L._V341012408_SX200_I connected with Caryl McAdoo for the first time, over the American Christian Fiction Writers email loop. A friendship developed before we met face to face in Indianapolis September 2013 and we instantly bonded.
When the praise and worship service kicked-off, I thought I heard what could only be the voice of an angel behind me. I turned, and it was Caryl!
Not only can the girl sing, she’s also an extremely talented writer who inspires the love of Christ through her books. Her supportive nature and incredible gift as a writer and critique partner have sharpened my writing. Proverbs 27:17 says, As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another. Caryl is a true sharpener and a creative genius, full of ideas. We talk and sparks fly and  creativity flows whether coming up with new ideas for marketing, websites, new books, new ventures, or praise of the Lord, who brought us together. I am truly blessed with Caryl McAdoo in my corner and I count her as a dear friend.
And, to top it off, Caryl’s books are the best I’ve ever read in Christian Fiction. Vow Unbroken and Hearts Stolen will be released on September 5th.
Contributed by Holly Michael

Dairy Free Product of the Month

Something new! Around the middle of each month, I’m going to share a cool, dairy free or gluten free product that I’ve discovered and enjoyed. Stayed tuned as I scour heath food stores and supermarkets for the latest and greatest.

I just found this at my local store and literally jumped for joy! Not just lactose free, but dairy free. There is a difference…



Monday Meet-My First “Writer” Friend

Smith - Headshot 2It was my first writers’ conference. I stumbled into a classroom, not realizing until it was underway, I was in the wrong room. But from the first greeting, the instructor had me hooked. I enjoyed that first session so much, I changed my schedule to attend her second session. I even repeated one of her sessions.

Ginny Smith opened the windows of my faltering imagination. She read my “faulty” fiction and encouraged me to keep working. Get into a critique group. Join ACFW. But never think of giving up. I returned to the conference the following year, and the next after that, when she was keynote speaker.

Ginny’s delightful sense of humor and generous gifts of chocolate kept everyone well entertained. We left with the wheels of inspiration turning in our minds, and the tools to work more efficiently, as she shared from her own experiences.

She was my first real “writer” friend. And even today, if I’m having a tough time with something, and need a word of encouragement, I know I can count on her. Though she’s a lot busier now than she was several years ago, she still makes time for friends.

Contributed by Betty Thomason Owens

Blog: www.bettythomasonowens.com

Co-writer at: Writing Prompts & Thoughts & Ideas…Oh My!



Monday Meet-Going the Extra Mile

becky white (1)

Becky (sunglasses in the middle)

In 2004, Becky White told me one day, “What you need is a book writing project, Jean.” She became determined to help me from my constant weeping after my son died from suicide. Becky took a deep breath on the other end of the phone. “I’ve decided we’re doing a children’s book of Bible stories. You come up with the in-your-own-words stories. I’ll tie it in with how the readers can apply each story to their lives with an action activity.”

My shoulders no longer slumped and my heart flitted to a higher note for I would not only be working with my best friend, but one of the best authors I’d ever met. Becky wrote under the name Becky Daniel and Rebecca Daniel from 1979 until 2004, while she edited two magazines and wrote 300 activity books for Good Apple Inc. From 2001 and 2009 Becky’s professional dreams came true. Holiday House’s children books published–Double Luck: Memoirs of a Chinese Orphan and Betsy Ross.

I loved every minute Becky and I spent on the project, and she managed to dash underfoot the lonely feelings I’d been struggling with for months. She never lost patience when I didn’t understand how something worked within our writing project. The valuable time she took away from her own work improved my writing skills.

Even though we haven’t actively sought a publisher for the project, the cherished hours Becky and I spent on the Bible stories far outweighed seeing the book in print. The most important thing Becky taught me? Go the extra mile in helping others, especially a friend who is in need. Becky has blessed my heart.

Contributed by Jean Ann Williams





6 Ingredient Vegan Chocolate Silk Pie by Minimalist Baker


This is the newest website I’ve found that offers dairy-free recipes...Minimalist Baker.

Photo by Minimalist Baker


  • 1.5 cups raw walnuts
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa or cacao powder
  • 1 heaping (packed) cup pitted dates, soaked for 10 minutes in warm water and drained
  • 12 ounces silken tofu, drained, patted dry
  • 1 3/4 cups dairy-free semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup light or full fat coconut milk (or another dairy-free milk)
  1. Prepare the crust by pulsing walnuts and cocoa powder in a food processor until it reaches a fine meal. Remove and set aside.
  2. Place soaked dates in the food processor and process until small bits remain and it’s sticky. Add back in the walnut-cocoa meal and process until well combined.
  3. Transfer to a glass pie pan lightly oiled with coconut oil. Alternatively, place parchment in the bottom for easy removal. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the crumbs and press with your hands to form a uniform crust that goes up the sides (see photo). Pop in the freezer to set.
  4. Melt the chocolate chips over a double boiler or in the microwave in 30 second increments. Once melted, work quickly to add to a blender along with the tofu and coconut (or other dairy free) milk. Blend until smooth, about 1 minute, scraping down the sides as needed.
  5. Pour over crust and smooth. Cover and freeze until set. Alternatively, refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until pretty firm. For easiest serving and longer storage, freeze.
  6. Serve and top with coconut whipped cream. Will keep in the fridge for several days, though best when fresh. Freeze for up to a few weeks, covered well.

Go here to find more about this pie and more recipes…


Monday Meet-My Most Devoted Fan


For the month of August and sprinkled throughout the rest of the year, we will feature writers and the help they’ve received during their journey…

There are so many people who helped me along the way to becoming a published author—teachers who taught me good grammar; all those who taught workshops or wrote books to improve my writing; all those who critiqued my works and were honest enough to tell me the truth; my publisher and my editor, of course.

But the person I’m most grateful for is my husband, Ron Duncan!

He is my most devoted fan—even though he hasn’t read all my books yet. During the first ten years of our marriage, I wrote and wrote looking for that elusive first contract. In spite of that, he never told me to stop spending so much time at my computer writing stories. Instead, he gave me more time by taking over most of the household duties. And without a complaint!

As a published writer, he’s taken me to event after event. Some nearby and others not so near. And again without a complaint!

And on a side note, I’ve been struggling with serious health issues the past two years—bilateral brain tumors. He’s taken on even more household duties along with visits to doctors and hospitals for treatments. And again without a complaint!

A simple thank you isn’t near enough to express the gratitude to my awesome husband! I couldn’t have done it without you so thank you!

Lillian Duncan writes stories of faith mingled with murder & mayhem. You can learn more about her and her books at www.lillianduncan.net