Sunday, September 30, 2012

Revealing Wild at Heart Covers

I'm proud to be a member of the Diamond State Romance Authors and very proud of the project they've been working on for the last several months. It's the Wild at Heart Anthologies, Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, that will benefit the Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge in Arkansas. A national call for submissions proved that there are many authors who care about animals in need. The authors involved contributed to these books by donating their work toward this cause.

Volume 1 consists of adult stories focused on large-animal rescue and/or the dangers of keeping one as a pet. Volume 2 consists of young adult stories. All proceeds will benefit TCWR, and the books will be sold by TCWR in their bookstore and online.

Special thanks goes to Delilah Devlin and Elle James who have worked many hours on this project. Elle designed the covers. To see a checklist from Elle on how this process of creating a book worked, click here to read her post on the DSRA blog.

The tigers pictured on the covers are residents of the facility. Missy is featured on the cover of Volume 1, and Loretta is the tiger model for Volume 2. Until the release date, go check out the awesome work done by  There are more than tigers at TCWR: bears, bobcats, ligers, lions, and a cougar. We are excited about the opportunity to help these animals in need.

Volume 1 Story/Authors:

A Boy, A Girl, A Tiger - Cynthia D’Alba
Saving Akira - Candace Sams
True Instinct - Charlene Roberts
Beached - Dustin Stevens
Spirit of a Tiger - Elle James
Sunlight and Solace - Gina Wilkins
Archer Falls - Lauren Smith
Wedding Crasher - Lindy Dierks
Saving Angel - Lynda Frazier
Buck - M Marie
Storm Haven - Vanessa North

Volume 2 Story/Authors:

Freedom - Connie Wilkins
Cat’s Rule - Aileen Fish
Salveje - Anna Meadows
Home by Midnight - Brinda Berry
In the Piney Woods - Delilah Devlin
The Girl and the Puma - Jane Hansen
Vision Quest - Karis Walsh
Refugee - Lori Freeland
Teens Gone Wild - Margaret Ethridge
Fierce Wild - Megan Mitcham 
Heart's Solace - Tara Fox Hall

We're planning a November release, so be sure to put these books on your TBR lists and watch for the annoucement!  You'll be helping a wonderful cause and enjoying these great stories while you do. *smile*

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.  


Saturday, September 29, 2012

Sweet Saturday ~ Slow-Cooked Stuffed Apples

Welcome to Sweet Saturday at Charlene Blogs.  I'm anxious to get into all the great recipes that come with Autumn and the holiday seasons.  So, this week I'm warming things up with an easy irresistible dessert, slow-cooker way.  *smile*  I got this recipe from  Thank you Taste of Home for allowing us to share them. :)

It's a tender stuffed apple filled with chewy pecans and yummy caramel topping.  Pam Kaiser of Mansfield, Missouri shared it.  

Slow-Cooked Stuffed Apples

Slow-Cooked Stuffed Apples Recipe
photo by Taste of Home

  • Prep: 20 min. 
  • Cook: 3 hours
  • Yield: 6 Servings

  • 6 large tart apples
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • Granola and caramel ice cream topping, optional
  • Core apples and peel top third of each; brush peeled portions with lemon juice. Place in a 6-qt. slow cooker.
  • Combine the pecans, apricots, brown sugar, butter, cinnamon and nutmeg. Place a heaping tablespoonful of mixture in each apple. Pour 2 cups water around apples.
  • Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hours or until apples are tender. Serve with granola and caramel topping if desired. Yield: 6 servings.
Nutritional Facts
1 stuffed apple (calculated without optional ingredients) equals 256 calories, 11 g fat (4 g saturated fat), 15 mg cholesterol, 50 mg sodium, 43 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 1 g protein.

Have any ideas to personalize it?  Do share!   

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.


Saturday, September 22, 2012

Sweet Saturday ~ Lemon Fluff Dessert

Welcome to Sweet Saturday at Charlene Blogs.  This week we're keeping it cool and fluffy. *wink*  I got this recipe from  Thank you Taste of Home for allowing us to share them. :)

Here's a quick, light, lip-smacking treat with a lovely lemon flavor.  Thank you Leola McKinney of Morgantown, West Virginia for this recipe.  It's diabetic friendly so I hope you all can enjoy it. *smile

Lemon Fluff Dessert

Lemon Fluff Dessert Recipe photo by Taste of Home

  • Prep: 25 min. + chilling
  • Yield: 12 Servings

  • 1 can (12 ounces) evaporated milk
  • 1 package (3 ounces) lemon gelatin
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1-1/3 cups boiling water
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1-3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Pour milk into a small metal bowl; place mixer beaters in the bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, dissolve gelatin and sugar in boiling water. Stir in lemon juice. Cover and refrigerate until syrupy, about 1-1/2 hours.
  • In a small bowl, combine crumbs and butter; set aside 2 tablespoons for garnish. Press remaining crumbs onto the bottom of a 13-in. x 9-in. dish. Beat chilled milk until soft peaks form. Beat gelatin until tiny bubbles form. Fold milk into gelatin. Pour over prepared crust. Sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Cover and refrigerate until set. Cut into squares.  Yield: 12 servings.
Nutritional Facts
1 piece equals 221 calories, 8 g fat (5 g saturated fat), 22 mg cholesterol, 151 mg sodium, 35 g carbohydrate, trace fiber, 3 g protein.  Diabetic Exchanges: 2 starch, 1 fat.

Let me know how they turn out for you!   

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Charlene Blogs' Labor Day Blog Hop Giveaway Winner Announced!

elisabeth barrett
And we have a winner for the Charlene Blogs' Labor Day Blog Hop Giveaway!

Congratulations, Donna S.!

Donna won a $10.00 Amazon egift card.  I'll be contacting you shortly, Donna. *big smile*

Thank you all for taking part in my portion of the Labor Day Blog Hop.  If you entered for a chance to win the Romance at Random giveaway, the winners are posted on her Rafflecopter below.  If you won, please contact Romance at Random.

Thanks again, and have a great week!

Here are the results for the Romance at Random giveaway.  Congratulations winners!

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.


Saturday, September 15, 2012

Sweet Saturday ~ Hazelnut Cheesecake Parfaits

Welcome to Sweet Saturday at Charlene Blogs.  This week we're layering up with a beautiful parfait.  I got this recipe from  Thank you Taste of Home for allowing us to share them. :)


Hazelnut Cheesecake Parfaits

Hazelnut Cheesecake Parfaits Recipe
photo by Taste of Home

Prep: 25 min. + chilling
Yield: 2 Servings

  • 1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons half-and-half cream
  • 2 tablespoons whipped cream cheese
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup coffee yogurt
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2/3 cup whipped topping
  • 2 whole chocolate graham crackers, crushed
  • Chocolate curls and additional whipped topping, optional
  • In a small heavy skillet, cook and stir the hazelnuts over medium heat until toasted, about 4 minutes. Sprinkle with sugar; cook and stir for 2-4 minutes or until sugar is melted. Spread on foil to cool.
  • In a small saucepan, melt chocolate chips with cream over low heat; stir until smooth. Remove from the heat; cool to room temperature.
  • In a small bowl, beat cream cheese and brown sugar until blended. Beat in yogurt and vanilla; fold in whipped topping.
  • In two parfait glasses, layer the graham crackers, yogurt mixture, chocolate mixture and hazelnuts. Refrigerate until chilled. Garnish with chocolate curls and whipped topping if desired. Yield: 2 servings.
Nutritional Analysis:
1 parfait (calculated without optional ingredients) equals 425 calories, 27 g fat (13 g saturated fat), 22 mg cholesterol, 94 mg sodium, 42 g carbohydrate, 3 g fiber, 6 g protein.

Let me know how they turn out for you!  Any variations to personalize it to your taste?  

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Never Forget 9-11-2001

I'll never forget the day.  

I was working at Chart Bank at the time. I think every employee, and many of the customers, were gathered in the conference room staring at the television screen. It was then the second airplane flew into the other tower. Ice flew threw me so fast it numbed my arms and my legs felt like noodles. We couldn't believe we'd just seen it happen, and several people had to quiet everyone down to hear the report. I just stood there.  Staring at that screen.      

When I had to head back to bookkeeping, everyone in the office tried to look busy.  It was dead quiet...except for the radio in the corner giving updates.  I finally gave up and turned, starting at the little rectangular box on the file cabinet.  (Thank you Melody for sneaking it in so I could listen to my early Christmas music CDs.)

My heart sank that day for the victims, their families, and for the fact people could do such a thing.  And in the days that followed, reports of heroes risking their lives and working so hard to save the lives and lessen the pain of others reignited my faith in humanity that the terrorists took.

No, I'll never forget.


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Sweet Saturday ~ Candied-Almond Chocolate Strawberries

Welcome to Sweet Saturday at Charlene Blogs.  I'm running late in posting this week's selection.  So sorry!  I hope I make up for it with this easy, easy recipe from  Thank you Taste of Home for allowing us to share them. :)

I've chosen a personal favorite of mine this week.  I used to love to visit my neighborhood fruit market and get these.  The lovely lady made them from strawberries she was selling...a great sales idea for sure!  

These Candied-Almond Chocolate Strawberries are diabetic friendly, so everyone can enjoy!  Laura McAllister, of Morganton, North Carolina has a bit of advice to make it extra special.  "Sprinkle the serving tray with crushed almonds.  Lay strawberries on top, and garnish with mint leaves."  


Candied-Almond Chocolate Strawberries Recipe

Candied-Almond Chocolate Strawberries Recipe
 photo by Taste of Home

Yield: 60 Servings
Prep: 35 min. + standing

  • 60 fresh strawberries (about 2 pounds)
  • 2 cups honey-roasted almonds
  • 1 package (10 ounces) 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate baking chips
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • Wash strawberries and gently pat with paper towels until completely dry. Place almonds in a food processor; cover and process to desired fineness. Transfer to a shallow bowl; set aside.
  • In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and butter; add cayenne and stir until smooth. Dip strawberries in melted chocolate; allow excess to drip off. Roll berries in almonds; place on waxed paper and let stand until set. Serve immediately. Yield: 5 dozen.
Nutritional Facts
1 dipped strawberry equals 52 calories, 4 g fat (1 g saturated fat), 2 mg cholesterol, 10 mg sodium, 5 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 1 g protein. Diabetic Exchange: 1 fat.

Let me know how they turn out for you!  

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.


Thursday, September 6, 2012

Thank You For The Love!

I wanted to take a moment and thank everyone who's supported me and the Cornerstone Deep installments of the Chronicles of Shilo Manor series.  It means the world when fans let me know how much they enjoy my books. Emails, Tweets, messages on Facebook...  Every one of them.  And it thrills me when someone tells me they can't wait for the next book or takes time to post a review.

Recently, Kay Dee Royal posted her thoughts about Cornerstone Deep.  Here's what she had to say:

Cornerstone Deep
Author: Charlene A. Wilson Genre: Paranormal/Fantasy Romance 
First Sentence: Cole moved as smoke, his elements converted into a dark mass. 
Anna, a subtle beauty and hard worker, has lived many lifetimes, unbeknownst to her. She's presently of lowly status, but has caught the eye of one Lord Dressen, who will stop at nothing to get her. 
Cole Shilo and his brothers, James and Vincent, came from Meridia, a dimension at the center of the spectrum ~ they can manipulate the elements. They are known as Grand Marshals, keeping the peace and supposedly answering to Lord Dressen. 
Dressen abuses his authority and has the Shilo boys play a part of Anna's capture ~ you'll have to read the story to find out how they conform the captives for Dressen. In this process, Cole finds something out about Anna when he's drawn to kiss her with the breath of Zephyr...a soul binding breath. 
Ms. Wilson's excellent world-building created dimensions, Gods, wizards, a weasel of a villain in Lord Dressen, along with a precious love story involving reincarnation, mind manipulation, and magick. Cornerstone Deep is the first in a series of the Shilo Manor brothers. 
Ms. Wilson's story-stars, Cole, James, and Vincent possess their own unique abilities, but also depend on the strength and power of each other. I found each of them worthy of admiration and honor in their own right. 
This is a magical, touching story of love and perseverance, one that was hard to put down. I look forward to reading the next book in Ms. Wilson's series, Cornerstone Deep Echoes. 
If you're hungry for a deep, yet magical, romance, pick up a copy, you won't be disappointed.

Thank you so much, Kay Dee! *big smile*

And Deb from HEA Romances with a Little Kick posted a review on her site with five Stilettos lining the bottom of the post.  Lol.  Gotta love a five Stilleto review!

Charlene Wilson is a new author to me, but I can guarantee you that Cornerstone Deep will not be the last book I read from this author. Cornerstone Deep is in a world of its own, and a book that I will enjoy revisiting again soon. 
The Shilo brothers are a huge plus in this book. They are not from this world, but they have lived and adjusted to life here. To me, Cole is the head of the trio because you can feel the alpha vibes pouring off him. James is the soft, sweet one and Vince, let’s just say, sparks my interest. 
The Shioh brother’s job on this world is to help with many things. They use their magic to take away the unpleasant memories of those in pain. They also work for Kyle Dressen, the Grand Marshall of the courts. This man is just nasty. He uses the brother’s powers as wizards to help bring people under his control. 
This is Cole’s story, who is strong, sexy and yet has his flaws. That is what made him an amazing character. Four hundred years before, Cole found his true love in their home world, where souls return time after time like clockwork. It seems to work for his brothers, but there is a hitch for Cole. All he wants is to find his lost love. 
Unfortunately, he struggles with his aim, which is how he finds himself in his current predicament. *grins* 
Anna’s character starts out as a pawn, but becomes a stronger role player as the story progresses. Anna’s soul searches for Cole; even with Lord Dressen setting her up to fail. I cannot wait to see what Mrs. Wilsondoes with this character in the future books. 
Anna and Cole’s reaction for each other is sizzling hot. Anna is a precious gift for Cole that he handed away over four hundred years ago. Now Cole has to fight to gain what he has lost…his soul mate. 
Cornerstone Deep has a well written, intriguing, suspenseful plotline. Add into that a cast of characters that bring it to life, and throw in a evil force, like Lord Dressen, who finds the brothers quite fun to play with and you have the makings of a book you just cannot put down. 
Mrs. Wilson creates pure magic with the stroke of her pen. She has managed to “Rock My World”, and then some. Bring on the next book in this series. 
Rated 5 Stilettos and a Recommend Read by Deb!

Thank you, thank you, Deb! *big smile*

If you share your own thoughts with your friends and/or blog readers, let me know.  I'd love to spread your post around the web. *smile*

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Tallies Are In For The Name The Character Contest

The tallies are in and Miss Unnamed character has a name!  Let's hear it for the young Chamber servant who, from this day forward, shall be known as Losette.  (She's clapping, giggling, jumping up and down, and knocking over that bucket of sudsy water as we speak.)  

Congratulations, Kayla Parks, for suggesting the winning name in the Name the Character contest.  Kayla will receive a signed paperback copy of Aumelan when it comes out.  Those who entered names will receive a free download of Cornerstones, which introduces the Chronicles of Shilo Manor series.  

Thank you all for taking part!  As I mentioned in my previous post, I'm considering some of the names for other characters in the book.  If I use one (or more) the person suggesting that name will also receive a copy of Aumelan.  I'll keep you posted if I choose to do that. *smile*

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Name The Character Contest ~ Vote!

The Name the Character Contest ended yesterday, and as I looked through the suggestions, I knew I'd have a hard time choosing just one.  Several of them could be used for the elite ladies of either Aumelan or Sun City instead of the simple lowly servant young woman I was looking for...I might offer another signed copy of Aumelan to someone in exchange for using one of those names for another character. *smile* (More on that in the days to come...) 

But, right now, here I am trying to decide on the right name for...Miss Unnamed.  I've narrowed it down, though, and have listed the top three below.

  • Ash
  • Elle
  • Losette

I've decided to let you all help in this decision.  I've posted this on my Facebook Fan page and also on my Facebook Profile if you'd like an idea on how the voting is going.  Leave a comment either here on Charlene Blogs or on one of those threads to case your vote. (If we're not connected on Facebook, send a friend request and "like" and I'll be happy to connect with you. *smile*)

Those who suggested names in the contest, will receive a PDF copy of Cornerstones: The First Ten Chapters From Cornerstone Deep, a sampler booklet which introduces you to the Chronicles of Shilo Manor series.  I'll send them out once we get a winner.  I appreciate you helping out! 

The person who suggested the winning name will receive a signed copy of Aumelan when it's published and bragging rights to naming a character in the book!

In case you were wondering about the other names that were suggested, here's the entire list:

  1. Tabetha
  2. Oxanna
  3. Kitina
  4. Tatiana
  5. Anastasia
  6. Adelina
  7. Idalea
  8. Adonica
  9. Liridona
  10. Ash
  11. Candice
  12. Danae
  13. Zahra
  14. Kaelyn
  15. Aria
  16. Elle
  17. Leauman
  18. Carlie
  19. Katie
  20. Barbara
  21. Amanda
  22. Jessica
  23. Ginger
  24. Kim
  25. Betty
  26. Mary  
  27. Martha
  28. Corrin
  29. Maglan
  30. Losette
  31. Dona
  32. Molly
  33. Susan
  34. Anabelle
  35. Louisa
  36. Tina
  37. Janice
  38. Orillian
  39. Missy
  40. Coo
  41. Karella

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.

Labor Day Blog Hop Giveaway!

elisabeth barrettWelcome to the Labor Day Blog Hop! September 1st through 15th, over 100 blogs will participate in this blog hop offering fantastic prizes!  

Thank you Romance at Random for supplying the overall prizes for this hop! Here's what you could win from them:

  • A Free Romance book! (10 winners in all - see  Romance at Random site for choices)
  • Be one of 5 winners to win a prize pack from author Elisabeth Barrett (check out her new release, Blaze of Winter)
  • Grand Prize is a $25 eGC   

Enter the Romance at Random giveaway below the Charlene Blogs' giveaway.

~ * ~

I want to give something away too!  So, here's what you could win at Charlene Blogs:

$10.00 Amazon Gift Card 

One lucky winner will receive a $10.00 Amazon egift card.  Enter using the Rafflecopter below and a winner will be chosen using  I'll post the winner to Charlene Blogs' giveaway on September 16th.

For the Romance at Random giveaway, Enter using the Rafflecopter below and Happy Hopping!

Check out the other blogs in the hop!

1.Romance At Random2.Ruthie Knox
3.Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews4.Reading Reality
5.Storm Goddess Book Reviews6.Manga Maniac Cafe
7.Full Moon Bites8.Reading with Holly
9.Bookie's Book Reviews10.All Things Books
11.Good Choice Reading12.The Write to Make a Living
13.The Book Diva14.Bea's Book Nook
15.Shawntelle Madison16.Elisabeth Barrett
17.Socrates' Book Review Blog18.Shelley Munro
19.Insane Hussein Reviews20.Books R Us
21.Jessica Scott22.Book Flame
23.Manic Readers Guest Blog24.My Book Addiction and More
25.SOS Aloha26.Pump Up Your Book
27.Sharon Cullen28.Under the Covers Book Blog
29.The Book Tart30.Reviews by Molly
31.Laurie's Thoughts & Reviews32.Seductive Musings
33.Romance Junkies34.Love To Read For Fun
35.Cassandra Carr36.BookHounds
37.Otterwise38.From the TBR Pile
39.Love Saves the World (INT)40.Sharon Cullen
41.So You Think You Can Write42.Babbles From Scott Eagan
43.Bronwyn's Writing44.TE Garden of Book Bloggers
45.Bookshelf Confessions46.Review From Here
47.Celticlady's Reviews48.Labor Day Hop
49.Romantic Reads and Such50.In Love with Romance
51.The Bookpushers52.Reviewing Romance
53.Queen of The Night Reviews54.Queen of All she Reads
55.Romantic Crush Junkie Reviews56.Saucy & Sinful Reviews
57.Romancing the Book58.Book Faery
59.Harlies Books60.Love, Laughter, Friendship
61.Ramblings From This Chick62.My Secret Romance
63.Rambling Reads64.Delighted Readers
65.suzy henderson66.Romancing Rakes For The Love of Romance
67.Blackraven's Erotic Cafe68.HEA Romances With a Little Kick
69.AJ's Reading Nook70.Blackraven's Reviews
71.The Readers Roundtable72.Dark Divas Reviews
73.T B R74.Romance Book Club
75.Seaside Book Nook76.Cheeky Reads
77.Mimmi's Musings78.Kindle Fever
79.Not Now...Mommy's Reading80.herding cats & burning soup
81.Kindles and Wine82.Harlequin Junkie
83.Caribbean Accent Book Reviews84.Sara Jane's Eclectic Reading Blog
85.Sharon Hamilton Author86.Coffey Brown Books
87.From the Bootheel Cotton Patch88.Teena in Toronto
89.Me and Reading90.The Romance Dish
91.All Things Books92.Amber Kallyn
93.Book Review Diva94.Leigh Ellwood
95.Me Want Food96.Captain marketing
97.One Word At A Time, Joan Swan, Author98.You've Been Hooked
99.The Things You Can Read100.The Autumn Review
101.Day Drmzzz102.Confessions From Romaholics
103.The Book of Terrible104.Between the Bookcovers
105.Charlene Blogs

Until next time, may your dreams be magical.