Sunday, February 24, 2019

RAMBLINGS & RECIPES - Ever Been to a Book Convention?

I'll be spending today packing my bags and getting ready to attend my first book convention of 2019. There will be several more as the year progresses, but I really look forward to the Coastal Magic Convention in Daytona Beach each year.

How great is that!! Daytona Beach in February! Pay close attention if you live up north and are shivering in the cold and shoveling snow to your front door. 

Now you may ask... what does a person pack when attending one of these conventions? Other than beachwear, that is.

The answer is different for each convention, based on the theme. For Coastal Magic, I'm packing a bright, sparkly purple top, a feathered mask, and lots of beads in purple, green and gold. Yes! The theme for this one is MARDI GRAS! 

I will have lots of extra beads to share, so if you are attending, come find me! No need to flash! (Please!) Just ask.

Oh! And be sure to take along an extra suitcase for transporting all the wonderful books you will end up buying, along with swag and gift baskets and all kinds of stuff you will receive!

Attending these book conventions gives you a chance to really get to know the attending authors. You have time to chat with them, have lunch with them, play games with them, and even buy books from them! And they are more than happy to sign that book for you.

And even if you can't attend the entire convention, stop by the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort on Saturday, March 2nd between 4:00 PM - 6:00 PM where once again, Coastal Magic will be accepting donations for a local branch of HABITAT FOR HUMANITY. The signing is a free activity, and is open to the public.

I'll be heading north from the Keys to pick up one of my daughters in the Orlando area before heading back east to Daytona Beach, and we will be meeting my other daughter and my granddaughter there in Daytona. Once there, I will be taking lots of pictures and... yes... posting them here on my blog and Facebook page. So, watch for it!

Mojitos by the pitcher
Yield:  12 one-cup servings

      3 cups (packed) fresh mint leaves
      9 Tablespoons sugar
      1½ cups light rum
      ½ cup fresh lime juice
      6 cups club soda
      6 cups crushed ice
      12 lime wedges

1. Reserve 12 mint leaves for garnish.  Place remaining mint leaves in a medium bowl.
2. Add sugar and mash with wooden spoon until mint is aromatic and oils are released.
3. Add rum and lime juice and stir until sugar dissolves.
4. Strain mixture into a pitcher.  (Can be prepared 2 hours ahead; refrigerate.)
5. Add club soda to pitcher; gently stir.
6. Fill each of 12 glasses with ¾ cup crushed ice.  Pour mojito over ice and garnish each glass with 1 mint leaf and 1 lime wedge.


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