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Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Who are the U.S. Marshals?

I absolutely LOVE research!!  But sometimes it's a little discouraging. So like today I decided to research the history of the U.S. Marshals. I'm writing a story in a multi-author series "The Lawkeepers" and our theme is about U.S. Marshals. I realized I didn't know that much about them, although I have stars in my eyes when I think about making my hero one of them.

Hollywood movies like to add glamor... like:
U.S. Marshals (Tommy Lee Jones)
The Fugitive (Harrison Ford)
Tombstone (Kurt Russell)
Hang 'Em High (Clint Eastwood)
... to name a few.

But did you know that the early days of being a U.S. Marshal wasn't all glamor or heroic? In fact, the U.S. Marshals were more like... secretaries??

The U.S. Marshals were created by the first Congress in the Judiciary Act of 1789 which was the same legislation that established the Federal judicial system. It was the main purpose of the U.S. Marshals to support the federal courts and to carry out the lawful orders issued by the judges, Congress, or the president of the United States.

Here are the duties they were assigned in the beginning:
* Served subpoenas / summons / writs (whatever that is) / warrants and other process issued by the courts
* Made arrests & handled all the prisoners
* Disbursed money
* Paid fees and expenses of the court clerks, U.S. attorneys, jurors and witnesses
* Rented courtrooms & jail space
* Hired bailiffs, criers (really? what is this?), and janitors
* Filled water pitchers
* Brought prisoners to the court house
* Made sure witnesses were on time and that jurors were at the court house

You know, I rather like the idea that Hollywood had of making the Marshals' jobs more glamorous. Thankfully, though, over time, the U.S. Marshals were given more duties and they actually become the heroes we want them to be.

And speaking of U.S. Marshal heroes.... I'm writing a romance right now that is scheduled to be released 4/23/19. Introducing... Lawfully Won! If you'd like to join their Facebook group, here is the link -

When wealthy widow, Hannah Hamilton, leaves home to care for her aunt in Big Springs, Texas, she's robbed and injured. However, that wasn't the worst of her woes. She also can't remember anything about her life. Accepting what the hotel owners have told her, she proceeds to work for them as a waitress in the hotel's restaurant, believing her name is Anna Cartwright. But when a man enters the hotel, she feels she knows him. But most importantly, she feels she's loved him before.

Colt Montgomery is a broken man. After confessing his love to Hannah Hamilton eight months ago and being rejected, he quit his position as the Sheriff and moved out of town. Now he's a U.S. Marshal looking for an outlaw that keeps going into hiding. When Colt sees Hannah working at a hotel far from her home, he's shocked. But when he realizes she doesn't remember who she is, he feels hopeful. If he can get her to fall in love with him as Anna, perhaps when her memory finally returns, he'll finally win the woman he's always loved. Or will he?

Marie Higgins is a best-selling author of Christian and sweet romance novels; from refined bad-boy heroes who make your heart melt to the feisty heroines who somehow manage to love them regardless of their faults. She has over 50 heartwarming on-the-edge-of-your-seat stories, and broadened her readership by writing mystery/suspense, humor, time-travel, paranormal, along with her love for historical romances. Her readers have dubbed her "Queen of Tease", because of all her twists and unexpected endings.

Bookbub - 

**Reference link -

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Non-Alcoholic Christmas Pudding, An Almost Authentic Regency Dessert

I am at the absolute most amazing place in the world. It's just a lakehouse, at the northern corner of Utah, but the people I am with are some of my favorite people in the world. I am at writing retreat with my critique group, four other amazing women (and a baby) who write Regency romance.

One of these women is an expert Regency researcher, and incredibly talented to boot, and last night (when I should've posted this) she recreated several Regency dishes for us.

For dessert, she made one of the most delicious things I've ever eaten - a recreation of a Regency Christmas Pudding.

First, for those newest to the concept, it is not a pudding in the way Americans now think of pudding. There is no J-ELLO involved.

First, I must give full credit to the person who took this recipe and made it her own, Arlem Hawks. If you want to follow her on Instagram, she does so many amazing things - sews Regency dresses, celebrates British holidays with her family, paints, and bakes French and English cuisine.

Isn't it the most lovely thing you've ever seen? Those are sugared cranberries on top. She SOAKED them in sugar syrup for almost 24 hours and they were delicious. 

On to the recipe - which you can make in an Instapot, believe it or not!

2/3 cups breadcrumbs
1/4 cup + 3 tsp self-rising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
2/3 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp of nutmeg
1/2 tsp of cinnamon 
2/3 cup dark brown sugar
2/3 cup raisins
2/3 cup golden raisins
2 Tbl apricots, dried
2 Tbl almonds
1 Small apple
zest of 1 lemon
zest of 1 orange
2 eggs
1/4 cup ginger ale
1 Tble orange juice
Butter to grease the pan

Orange Sauce Ingredients:
1/3 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup orange juice

Mix dry ingredients, dried fruit, nuts, apple, zest.

In another bowl, combine eggs, ginger ale, orange juice, and whisk everything together. 

Fold together. Cover and chill overnight. 

Next day, butter your pan! Press pudding in, cover with parchment and foil, tie with a baking string. 

Steam in your instapot for 15 minutes - NOT pressure cook! Then steam on low pressure for 1 hour. 

Steam 30 minutes before serving. :-) 

Combine orange sauce ingredients in sauce pan, melt everything together on low heat. Then drizzle over individual servings of pudding. 

This recipe served five hungry authors, with a nice big piece left over. 

Again, this recipe was created by Arlem Hawks, who everyone should keep an eye on. 

I'm Sally Britton, and my Regency novels are so much fun. Please check them out - they're all stand-alone romances and you can find them here!