6 Items People Forget to Pack For a Trip to the Beach

It’s August! In my neck of the woods, that means hot, sunny days at the beach. Can you imagine that 40% of the people who were asked when they pack for their trip to the beach answered “the night before”?  The night before! That last-minute scramble to toss things into a suitcase means there's always stuff that’s forgotten. Here’s a list of the top 6 items people forget to pack for a trip to the beach.



6. An Extra Bag for Souvenirs. Do yourself a favor and pack an extra tote to carry home your souvenirs—t-shirts, sweat shirts, beach towels, salt water taffy, delicious fudge, buttery caramel popcorn. Believe me, you’ll need an extra tote!

5. A Book to Enjoy. Relaxing on the beach is the very best place to enjoy a beach read. Hardback, paperback, or e-book; it doesn’t really matter. There is nothing like turning those pages while digging your toes in the sand.

4. Beach Umbrella. Sitting in the blaring sun starts off kinda nice. But after an hour or so, the shade of a beach umbrella will be a great relief.

3. Sunglasses. Protect your eyes! The sun’s rays are stronger near the water and sand due to reflection. Grab a pair of sunglasses and protect yourself from those UV rays.

2. Toothpaste. It sounds crazy, but people brush before leaving the house and forget their toothpaste. Keep a couple of travel-size tubes ready for any trips you might take.

And the item that's forgotten most often???

1. SUNSCREEN. Yikes! Sunscreen comes in a wide variety of SPFs. When planning your trip to the beach, choose the sunscreen that’s right for you and toss it into your suitcase. Your skin will thank you!

Have I got a Beach Read for you!

ROMANCE BEACH BUNDLE 1 is on sale for just 99¢! You save $7 off the regular price of this 3-book bundle. Here’s what readers have to say about the sweet, clean bundle of books:

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July Sale! Wild Hearts of Summer is #99cents!

On Sale for 99¢ ~ Save $3 

Cathy Whitley’s two best friends, Sara and Heather, may have found the men of their dreams… and that’s all well and good for them. But that’s not going to happen to Cathy. She allowed love to catch her off-guard once and it drained her, body and soul. She’ll never let it happen again.

Brad Henderson has been chasing Cathy for years. He’s settled for their on-again-off-again, “friends with bennies” relationship for far longer than he expected. Attempting to navigate the rip currents surrounding her heart has left him swimming in circles.

Then everything changes for Brad when a letter arrives in the mail. He is stunned and wonders if his new life will draw Cathy closer—or push her further out of reach.

One way or the other, it’s time to draw a line in the sand…

Find this Bargain-Priced eBook:

Kindle Worldwide

Nook

Kobo

Apple iBooks

Also available at regular price in Paperback

The first three books of the Ocean City Boardwalk Series revolve around 3 women friends who live and work in Ocean City, Maryland. They’re stand-alone stories; however, readers would enjoy them best by reading them in order.

Titles in the Ocean City Boardwalk Series:
Following His Heart, Book 1 (Just $1.99)
Wild Hearts of Summer, Book 3 (99c)
Her Mr. Miracle, Book 8 (99c)

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FREE June 16th - 20th! AN HONORABLE MAN #Kindle

 Download Today!



FREE TODAY! An Honorable Man, Bk 1

The Black Bear Brothers Series ~ #Kindle

United States Kindle Store

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I loved this book because it was filled with Native American history and traditions.” ~Kindle Reader Review

The essence of romance is creating characters who complete each other as the story comes to a satisfying close. An Honorable Man delivers.~D. Taylor

A well written story embracing Native American traditions and loyalty to family. ~Jeanette A.

...deals with some heavy topics. I read it in two parts and loved the characters. ~Kindle Reader Review 

Find all the books in The Black Bear Brothers Series by clicking here.



Marriage Advice by @Donna_Fasano

Because June is the most popular month for weddings, many of you will be celebrating anniversaries this month. If you were a June bride (or groom), Happy Anniversary to you! As I was researching for this post, I found some great marriage advice offered by the Farmer’s Almanac. (Yes! The Farmer’s Almanac is still in publication.) Here’s what they say are the keys to a happy marriage:

“Be prepared to give more than you are receiving and you will receive more than you know.”

“The secret is Communication, Compromise, Cooperation, and Compassion.”

“Listen, listen, listen.”

Those pieces of advice are great, but I also found these delightful tidbits that feel a little more down to earth and they made me chuckle:

“Never hate each other’s guts at the same time.”

“The four most important words in any marriage—I’ll do the dishes.”

“Never laugh at your spouse’s choices. You are one of them.”

And my favorite piece of marriage advice:

What’s your best piece of marital advice?

I have some books that feature weddings and marriage. Whether inspired by a love match, a second-chance, or a marriage-of-convenience, each one of these beach-reads offers a heartwarming happily-ever-after at the end.











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White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cookies #Recipe by @Donna_Fasano

Now that I’ve been fully vaccinated and life is opening up a bit, I was able to celebrate Mother’s Day in style. My son, his wife, and my granddaughter came for a 4-day visit. It was so nice to spend time with the ones I love. I baked White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies for the event. I had never baked these cookies before because white chocolate never appealed to me and macadamia nuts are so darned expensive. But I decided to give them a try and they were a bit hit. Here’s my recipe:

White Chocolate Chip Macadamia Nut Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 11 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2/3 cup vegetable shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 12 ounces white chocolate chips
  • 1 1/2 cup macadamia nuts

(Note: coarsely chop 1 cup of the nuts and leave 1/2 cup whole)

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375° F. Cream the sugars, butter, and shortening together. Once they’re fully incorporated, mix in the eggs and the vanilla.
  2. Add flour, soda, salt. Stir to combine.
  3. Add white chocolate chips and nuts.
  4. Drop dough by rounded tablespoonfuls (I use a cookie scoop) about 2 inches apart onto an ungreased cookie sheet (I use non-stick baking mats). Bake until light brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Cool slightly before removing from cookie sheet.
  5. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

This month I am offering a 2-book boxed set for just 99¢. You save $6 off the regular price of FALLING FOR A SINGLE MOM. But please take advantage of the offer soon as the book is only on sale through the end of May.




If you’re a mom, I hope you had a WONDERFUL Mother’s Day. If you have a mom, I hope you celebrated her! Please comment below to tell me how you celebrated the day. I love to hear from you! 


Fully Loaded Blondies by @Donna_Fasano #Foodies #Desserts

Sometimes, you just need something DELICIOUS. These blondies are loaded with good stuff! I hope you enjoy them.

Fully Loaded Blondies 


5 Tablespoon butter, softened

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla

3/4 cup all purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup chopped nuts

1/2 cup sweetened shredded coconut

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Pre-heat oven to 350° F. Spray an 8-inch x 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray and set aside.

In a mixing bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar. Add the egg and vanilla and stir until ingredients are fully incorporated.

Add flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir to thoroughly combine.

Stir in nuts, coconut, and chocolate chips. Using a rubber spatula, scrape batter into prepared pan. Batter will be stiff. Press batter into all corners and flatten top evenly. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from oven. Cool. Cut into squares.

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This month, I'm offering TWO HEARTS IN WINTER for just 99 cents. 
Save $3 during the month of March.

Gluten-Free Muffins with Banana Powder by @Donna_Fasano


Because I have family members who suffer with celiac disease, I have been playing around with gluten-free recipes. I also purchased banana powder and decided to incorporate it into this recipe. If you don’t have banana powder, see the note at the end of the recipe. These muffins are light and airy and delicious! If you didn’t know they were gluten-free… you couldn’t tell. Yum.

Banana Millet Muffins  


1/2 cup brown sugar

2 large eggs

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1/4 cup water*

3/4 cup millet flour

1/3 cup banana powder*

3 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup walnut pieces


1.    Preheat oven to 350° F. Prepare a 12 cup muffin tin by spraying with baking spray (or line with cupcake paper.)

2.    In a medium size bowl, blend together the brown sugar and the eggs until there are no lumps of sugar. Add the oil, lemon juice, and water. Mix to combine.

3.    Add the flour, banana powder, baking powder, and soda. Stir until all ingredients are incorporated. Stir in walnut pieces until evenly distributed in the batter.

4.    Fill muffin cups three quarters full. Tap tray on the counter to remove large air bubbles. Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. Cool and enjoy.

*If you don’t have banana powder, omit the banana powder and the water and add 1 ripe, mashed banana.

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This month I’m offering SECOND CHANCE VALENTINE on sale in the Kindle Store for just 99¢. Here’s more about the book:

As teens, Josie and Alex met under golden sunshine, frolicked in the surf and sand, and fell head over toes in love. But their one glorious summer ended in ruin and Josie fled Ocean City with a broken heart.

Now Josie’s grandmother is ill and needs help with the family business, a thriving harbor-side diner called Joe’s Place. So after more than a dozen years, Josie returns to her hometown only to discover she has a 180 pound problem—Alex is the Kitchen Commander at Joe’s Place. Surely, Josie can work with Alex until her grandmother is back on her feet. However, when Alex’s little girl starts scheming, not a single heart will be safe against the little matchmaker.

This book contains bonus recipes from Joe’s Place!

SECOND CHANCE VALENTINE is also available (at regular price) in Paperback

 As an Amazon, Nook, and iTunes Associate, Awesome Romance Blog earns from qualifying purchases. This post may contain paid links.