Arie...I kind of blame his parents...

As a mom of four, I hate when the mom takes the blame for every stupid thing their kids do. However, I really think that Arie's parents talked him into Becca. It was clear his emotions and feelings were for Lauren and he was trying to talk himself into Becca. Let's be clear. Both women are too good for him. He can't man up enough to figure out what he wants and have any convictions. Maybe he was overwhelmed and doesn't do well in a crisis. But as his parents, they KNEW he couldn't make a choice and yet they told him theirs. Strongly. Multiple times. And he was in such a confused state, I think he went with someone else making the decision for him. It was easier.

Keep in mind that his ex-girlfriend said he would be a great bachelor until it was time to pick just one. Baby Bekah called it too by saying he's a manipulative person who says what anyone wants to hear to get his own way.

The thing that bothers me most about him is even after he'd broken Becca's heart, he had NO consideration for her feelings at all. He was completely lacking in empathy. Even when talking with her on tonight's show, he seems to want her to feel bad for him. I think our bachelor is so in his own head that he's probably not capable of sacrificing for another person. He's probably been spoiled and told that he's allowed to get whatever he wants. (I'm not a fan of his family, can you tell? I think they created his narcissism or at least enabled it.) . This show certainly didn't help.

When asked if he has regrets by Chris Harrison, Arie says he regrets asking Becca to marry him. TO HER FACE!! Not that she's hurt, not that he was unfair to her, no, he regrets that he made a mistake. This guy is utterly clueless and if Lauren doesn't run I fear for her future. When she is having a baby Arie will tell her that her wailing is really bothering him. Could she please keep it down?

If any of you have read by Ashley Stockingdale, I'm thinking Arie is Seth Greenwood come to life. As far as Becca being the Bachelorette, I hope she's ready. She deserves so much better than what happened to her. She allowed that jerk to talk to his ex and "get some closure." That is going to harm her trust in anyone. There are long-term repercussions to what he did and I don't think he will ever get it.


Christian Scavenger Hunt Stop #21

 

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Welcome to the Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt! If you've just discovered the hunt, be sure to start at Stop #1 and collect the clues through all 30 stops, in order, so you can enter to win one of our top 5 grand prizes!


  • The hunt begins on 3/1 at noon MST with Stop #1 at LisaTawnBergren.com.

  • Hunt through our loop using Chrome or Firefox as your browser (not Explorer).

  • There is NO RUSH to complete the hunt--you have all weekend (until Sunday 3/4 at midnight MST)! So take your time, reading the unique posts along the way; our hope is that you discover new authors/new books.

  • Submit your entry for the grand prizes by collecting the CLUE on each author's scavenger hunt post and submitting your answer in the Rafflecopter form at Stop #30. Many authors are offering additional prizes along the way!
  • It is my honor to introduce Karen Witemeyer!









More Than Meets the Eye

When her family is threatened, Evangeline doesn’t expect falling in love to be their best defense. Yet how can she follow her heart when it tugs in opposing directions?

***

A Heroine with Heterochromia

By Karen Witemeyer

My June release, More Than Meets the Eye, will be the first book in a new series. While there is an excitement that comes from getting to know a new group of characters, there is also a pressure to make them fresh and unique.

The premise behind my new Patchwork Family series is a group of orphans who bond to form their own family when their orphan train derails. These youngsters have been passed over and left unclaimed. Zach, because he is a belligerent loner with a giant chip on his shoulder. Seth, because he is sickly, weakened by asthma. But how could I make my cheerful, tenderhearted Evangeline undesirable to adoptive families?

Mismatched eyes.

Psychologists will tell you that humans crave symmetry. It's why certain faces are universally more attractive than others. When that symmetry is out of balance, it creates cognitive dissonance. To justify our discomfort, we place blame on the cause, calling it unnatural or something darker, like witchcraft. The greater the dissonance, the greater the reaction. So, I didn't simply give my heroine slightly different colored eyes. I made them drastically different. One dark brown and one vividly blue. These are the eyes I patterned Evangeline's after.

My husband loves the fantasy genre, and he and I recently watched The Shannara Chronicles based on Terry Brooks's novels. General Riga is a ruthless villain on a quest to eradicate magic. His evil is highlighted by his unnatural eyes—one dark brown, the other vivid blue.

My sweet-natured heroine has nothing in common with that villain, yet she feels the sting of rejection and prejudice because of her eyes and is challenged by the hero to stand tall in a world that fails to appreciate her inner beauty because they are blinded by what they see on the outside.

 

***


For those who love to smile as they read, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. Winner of the ACFW Carol Award, National Reader's Choice Award, HOLT Medallion, Inspirational Reader's Choice Award, and a finalist for both the RITA® and Christy Awards, Karen is a firm believer in the power of happy endings. . . and ice cream. Learn more at www.karenwitemeyer.com or join her private Facebook group - the Posse.

Here's the Stop #22 Skinny:


 


Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt Stop #21

Welcome to the Christian Fiction Scavenger Hunt! If you’ve just discovered the hunt, be sure to start at Stop #1, and collect the clues through all 30 stops, in order, so you can enter to win one of our top 5 grand prizes!

• The hunt BEGINS on 3/1 at noon MST with Stop #1 at LisaTawnBergren.com.
• Hunt through our loop using Chrome or Firefox as your browser (not Explorer).
• There is NO RUSH to complete the hunt—you have all weekend (until Sunday, 3/4 at midnight MST)! So take your time, reading the unique posts along the way; our hope is that you discover new authors/new books.
• Submit your entry for the grand prizes by collecting the CLUE on eachauthor’s scavenger hunt post and submitting your answer in the Rafflecopter form at Stop #30. Many authors are offering additional prizes along the way!

http://lisatawnbergren.com/2018/02/christian-fiction-scavenger-hunt-stop-1-3/

TODAY'S POST: KAREN WITEMEYER

Karen in Red Roses small

It is my honor to introduce Karen Witemeyer! For those who love to smile as they read, bestselling author Karen Witemeyer offers warmhearted historical romance with a flair for humor, feisty heroines, and swoon-worthy Texas heroes. Winner of the ACFW Carol Award, National Reader's Choice Award, HOLT Medallion, Inspirational Reader's Choice Award, and a finalist for both the RITA® and Christy Awards, Karen is a firm believer in the power of happy endings. . . and ice cream. Learn more at www.karenwitemeyer.com or join her private Facebook group-the Posse.

More Than Meets the Eye

A Heroine with Heterochromia

My June release, More Than Meets the Eye, will be the first book in a new series. While there is an excitement that comes from getting to know a new group of characters, there is also a pressure to make them fresh and unique. The premise behind my new Patchwork Family series is a group of orphans who bond to form their own family when their orphan train derails. These youngsters have been passed over and left unclaimed. Zach, because he is a belligerent loner with a giant chip on his shoulder. Seth, because he is sickly, weakened by asthma. But how could I make my cheerful, tenderhearted Evangeline undesirable to adoptive families?

Mismatched eyes.

Psychologists will tell you that humans crave symmetry. It's why certain faces are universally more attractive than others. When that symmetry is out of balance, it creates cognitive dissonance. To justify our discomfort, we place blame on the cause, calling it unnatural or something darker, like witchcraft. The greater the dissonance, the greater the reaction. So, I didn't simply give my heroine slightly different colored eyes. I made them drastically different. One dark brown and one vividly blue. These are the eyes I patterned Evangeline's after.

Evangeline's Eyes

My husband loves the fantasy genre, and he and I recently watched The Shannara Chronicles based on Terry Brooks's novels. General Riga is a ruthless villain on a quest to eradicate magic. His evil is highlighted by his unnatural eyes—one dark brown, the other vivid blue.
Desmond Chiam as General Riga

My sweet-natured heroine has nothing in common with that villain, yet she feels the sting of rejection and prejudice because of her eyes and is challenged by the hero to stand tall in a world that fails to appreciate her inner beauty because they are blinded by what they see on the outside.


Here’s the Stop #21 Skinny:

You can order Karen’s book at Amazon
Barnes and Noble, CBD, BooksAMillion or at your local bookstore!

Clue to Write Down: AND COMMENT
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Link to Stop #22, the Next Stop on the Loop: Karen Witemeyer


Wedding #Keds

As a lifelong wearer of "Keds" I can't tell you how blessed I am by this new trend of brides wearing them. Oh my goodness, I had the ugliest wedding shoes. My dress was so over the top that I thought, you know, just some white shoes...clearly, I had a lot to learn.

My daughter plans to be married in her cowboy boots. This is something I don't get, but Keds? Keds are the perfect wedding dress accessory. They're comfortable. They're SOOO cute and now they have bling. I mean, sign me up! I want to get married again. I need a do-over. And not just because my dress had shoulder pads a mile wide and my hair was in all its '80's glory. Because now people, now you can wear Keds with your dress.

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Arie #TheBachelor can't make up his mind...

I mean, is it me? Or is it woefully unattractive that Arie can't man up and make up his mind? I mean, when Becca's ex shows up, does he man-up and say, "Dude, let's go!"

He does not. And it's not like I expect him to fight the dude, but could you at least say, "No, she's not going with you. She loves me now." But what does he do? He's like, "Dude, you'll have to discuss it with her. I don't know--"

Okay, I'm paraphrasing, but essentially, that's what he said and did. I don't expect him to go caveman and drag her back to his room, but could he at least put up a little fight? Instead, he labors over the point that she was with him for seven years and maybe she wants him now. He's like my high school self! Maybe that's why I have disdain...

First off, I thought he was more in love (from the looks of it) with Lauren so I was kind of shocked that he was ready to marry Becca after that date. Do you remember from the day before? The blonde girl? Not the one who likes dead, furry things, but the other one? Arie has a case of dating amnesia, which might be why he's still single at his age. "I went out with you? No, for real?"

I can't even root for him. I'm trying. I'm really trying here.


I just can't with #TheBachelor

I really am a terrible pick of Bachelors because I loved Arie before this season started. Now, I see that whenever he is flummoxed, he crams his tongue down someone's throat and we're supposed to buy that he's romantic. Ugh. It is not working for me and after watching "The Olympics" and "Victoria" I just can't summon the courage to sit through the Bachelor in Italy. With such epic quotes as, "It's so Italian." Ya think?


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Last night, I turned it off when Jacqueline was sobbing in the previews. Seriously? Girl, you are in Italy. Get OUTSIDE. Go have a cannoli. Eat pasta. Tour history. See some art. Do not sit and pine over a guy who has all the personality of moldy bread. Listen, I'm sure Arie is a nice guy, but that doesn't make him marriage material. So if you're wondering where my recaps went, I can't really make it through an episode.

I did watch "Victoria" last night, which was SOOO good. It could have been called, "What happens in the Highlands, stays in the Highlands."

While finding a picture, I know Lord M is now dead in Season 2. But you know, Rufus lives...


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IKEA: It's a trap!

When I lived in East Palo Alto, the best part was living on the Baylands, which is where the San Francisco Bay ends. It's so amazing and quiet -- the only noise is the small planes overhead from the Palo Alto airport, and I love that sound because it reminds me of my childhood. We lived near the San Carlos airport -- back when normal people had airplanes and boats for weekend fun -- not just rich people.. .When I first got married, we'd ride our mountain bikes all over the Baylands and it just made the world disappear.

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So imagine if you will, the perfect reflecting stillness of the Baylands and characters speaking to me, telling me where they are going next. It's like, I'm totally there to listen so I can get home and get it all down on paper. The sun is out. The small planes are flying overhead and the cranes and egrets are perched along the path. It's the kind of zen writers dream of...and I ruined it!
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When I lived in EPA, we didn't so much as have a grocery store. Now there's a Nordstrom Rack, a Target...and an IKEA. This is where I go horribly wrong. I think, "I wonder if I could get a cheap bookshelf and get some of those books out of my linen closet. That would leave more room for fluffy towels. That would allow me to look at my books, which makes me happy...

Yes, I know the founder of IKEA just died and no disrespect to the dead. The man made furniture affordable and who doesn't love opening a sock drawer and having to brace the rest of the dresser so it doesn't fall on your toes? I'm sure there are people out there. I'm just not one of them. But today, I'm by myself and I'm not a particularly anxious person, but when I notice the bookshelves are falling apart IN the store, I think, what was I thinking? I need to get out of here. But here's the thing, try getting out. In the words of Admiral Ackbar, "It's a trap!" (my boys would be so proud of this reference.)

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You can't go back the way you came in because it's an escalator up. The only way out is through, but through where? There are people everywhere. You think you've just been through one room, but nope, it's another meant to confuse and demean you. The ONLY thing to get your bearings is the overwhelming smell of Swedish meatballs and the cafe. And I'm not going to lie, those meatballs smell incredible. For a moment I think, I may as well just sit here and eat and regroup. I have my Kindle. I can read. I have a pad of paper, I can write down the dialogue I created earlier. I can do this.


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Then you realize, the closest you're getting to the meatballs is that smell. So you search again for the exit. WHERE is the exit? I finally went through the entire store and squeezed my way around the snaking line that went well into the warehouse. I had to take a giant elevator with other panic-stricken people wheeling large flats of pressed furniture until i saw daylight. Well, not really daylight, but some sun peaking into the underground parking garage. As I got into my car, it said I was going the wrong way. But this time, I didn't fall for that lie. I went in the out door and emerged triumphant from the parking garage.

Never again. My books can stay in the linen closet. Fluffy towels are overrated.


Goals 2018 -- (BIC!) Bum in Chair! #AmWriting

So my desk got taken over as a makeup table for my daughter. I realize this is as weak an excuse as they come. But seriously, I'd wake up, she'd be sitting here and I'd start something else and never quite sit down for the day. (An ADD highlight of my life.) So I told her today, you need to park yourself somewhere else.

She eyed me warily as if to decipher if I was serious. I gave that scary mom face.

I started working on my webpage and blog today to make them cohesive. I'm pretty proud of that as I have no talent in this arena. It may show, but be kind, a writer takes enough rejection on a daily basis.

It's time to immerse myself in the life of my Wentworth Heiresses. I'm having fun with this book, but there are so many characters to set up the series, that I'm struggling keeping them all straight in my head. Each with their own goals and annoyances. But my goal for 2018 is to keep producing. I don't want to have to get a real job, so that should be my motivation. That, and my Civil War era brick wall that I want in my next house.


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Preferably in my kitchen -- like this:


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However, it's the 27th of the month and I've only written a paragraph on my new book. I need to get back to a chapter a day. So what are you up to for 2018? For me, it couldn't get worse than 2017, so I'm just excited to leave that year behind.


#TheBachelor in Tahoe -- My Recap

The crew heads to Tahoe where we get such stimulating commentary as this:


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The first date is parasailing Lake Tahoe with Seinne. She tells him that she didn't grow up seeing girls who look like her fall in love. Arie thinks this is sad and he feels good about them, so he gives her the rose. Sadly, there is no chemistry between the two of them at all. They get a private Lanco concert. My daughter informs me that this is a country band. They sing a song about being someone's forever. In truth, Seinne is way too smart for Arie. He's still trying to convince us by his commentary that there's something there we as an audience are missing. We're not.

On the huge group date, they take over the hiking trail. I SOOO HATE big groups on a trail. Just sayin. Krystal proves she's crazier than ever as she tells us she's confident even though she's like a speck of sand among a beach of long-haired beauties.

Suddenly, we are on an episode of "Survivor" and an American "Bear Grylls" tells them to pee in cup so they can survive. Or, you could just pick up a handful of snow or boil water from the creek so there's that. They do end up eating worms. Arie pulls Kendall aside and makes out ten feet from the group. Subtle.

I give them credit. It's snowing and they're hiking on granite. That's not easy. But of course, the hike ends at a mountaintop hot tub. Krystal's commentary harping on the other women is getting so old. They need to take the microphone away from her. Although everyone is doing the exact same thing as her, they are aggressive, desperate and sad. I think she's just vying for "Bachelor Pad." No one is that mean. I hope.

Lauren B and Arie sit by the fire in a fur blanket. He tells her he really loves an independent woman. That's over quickly. Enter Kendall, the quirky taxidermist comes out next. Their chemistry is on fire. I love that he likes the quirky chick. She just seems like she can have a good time wherever she is. I think she's too fun for Arie, but I like her.

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Chelsea should be really happy that Krystal can't stop talking. Chelsea looks demure by comparison. Krystal uses her time with Arie to coo and complain -- and manipulate. That Marilyn Monroe voice needs to go. She really lives inside her own make-believe world. I certainly hope this is an act and not a personality disorder.


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Southern girl Tia gets unnerved by Krystal's attack of crazy. But Arie rewards Tia with the rose.

One on One with Bekah

They go horseback riding. Daughter was like, 'They're allowed to go alone on this trail? They're sketch on horses.' They are. There's a trail guide in the distance. You can't really talk on a trail ride, so they get to a tiny barrel hot tub. Daughter also wants to know how much champagne these bougie people can drink. There's a 14-year age difference between them. The girls back at the house are worried about this, but he's got his signature handsy move and not noticing yet.


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At dinner, Arie is talking about his life in his late 20's and how different he is now and Bekah tells him she's 22. It gets awkward quickly. He visibly gulps. But he's clearly not ready to cut her loose. She calls him on his using it as an excuse. I have to say, she's got it together for someone her age and I don't think it's fake or manipulative like it is with Krystal.

Arie tells Bekah that her age terrifies him, but he gives her the rose anyway. Because he really, really feels connected to her.

There's no cocktail party tonight, so Krystal commandeers Arie in the middle of the rose ceremony. She's panicking.

Sidenote: I'm really ticked that Winchester Mystery House movie looks so stupid. I grew up going there and it's a cool place. They ruined it making it a cheesy horror film. I've been there on night tours, and it's creepy, but in an understated way. Why mess with the story? The only ghost I ever saw, I saw there. It was a friendly ghost. He wore overalls and he didn't scare me. I was eight. Okay, back to our regularly scheduled story.


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Brittany T is going home. Caroline is going home. Since we haven't spent any time with either, it's not dramatic. They're better off anyway. This show makes me feel bad about myself. LOL