Wednesday, December 13, 2017


I'm so excited to be a stop on the 
blog tour for author
Julie Seedorf
and her new book
Book 2 in the Brilliant Minnesota Mysteries

It’s Christmas in Brilliant, Minnesota, and Brilliant is known for its glitzy Christmas traditions. A world-renowned Christmas pageant, the town square decked out with Santa’s Village and a live nativity scene bring visitors to Brilliant each year. Just as the tourists arrive, Jezabelle Jingle and her mystery writer friend, Miranda, find the body of Ernest the elf dead and wrapped in a bundle of Christmas lights in the town square. Is Ernest part of a new holiday puzzle the Discombobulated Decipherers need to solve? Or is dead Ernest part of a bigger plot? Will Jezabelle decipher the clues so Brilliant can celebrate Christmas in peace? Or will Jezabelle be the next gift-wrapped box under the village tree?


Winners will be chosen after December 20
at the end of the tour

One lucky reader will win a set of print copies of


USA only

Enter using the Rafflecopter form at the end of this post.

This giveaway is through Great Escape Book Tours, not Lisa Ks Book Reviews.


I am excited to be on Lisa’s Blog today. I decided to talk about food in this blog. Cozies are known to have delicious recipes in them and up until now I haven’t added any recipes to my books. Most of the recipes I named were the kooky creations I had in my mind but this book was different. I knew I needed to stretch myself a little and find a recipe that would work with my books.

I turned to my Granddaughter Maggie. She makes the most sumptuous cupcakes and most of the time they are her own recipe. Unfortunately our time together is limited because of distance and schedules. We took a week this past summer to work on our recipes.

We did a lot of baking and we came up with one recipe we loved but unfortunately before this book got published this Grandma lost the recipe in all of my notes. The other recipe needs tweaking. It doesn’t rise we experimented and kept throwing things in just to see what would happen. That is the recipe you will find in the book called Work-In-Progress Cupcakes. We are inviting our readers to tweak our recipes and send them to us and we will put them on a blog or website and pick one and put it in the next book with permission of course.

Now I want to introduce you to Gladys Johanson. Her daughter Emily is a good friend. I met Gladys when Emily and I were in high school. Gladys recently celebrated her 100th Birthday. She is amazing. I am including in this blog post the column I dedicated to Gladys. One of Gladys recipes is in my new book. It is called Lemon Love Notes. If you know Gladys you would know she puts love into everything she does. Enjoy this column, my book and the recipes.

Something About Nothing

by Julie Seedorf © October 2017

100 Years Young

If you think in terms of a year, plant a seed; if in terms of ten years, plant trees; if in terms of 100 years, teach the people. Confucius

I love this quote from Confucius. Confucius was a Chinese teacher, a politician, and philosopher that lived between 551 BC and 479 BC. This thought came to mind as I contemplated the people in my life who have reached the grand age of 100. I am awed by the fact I have an aunt that is going to be 101, an uncle who lived to be 102 and now I have a friend who celebrated her 100th birthday on October 19.

My friend's name is Gladys Johanson and I first remember meeting Gladys back in my late high school years when one of her daughters was my best friend.

I want to share a little history of Gladys life. Gladys was born in Matawan, MN on October 19, 1917, and was the fifth child of Minnie and Herman Vogelsang. She had two brothers and two sisters and two brothers that died in infancy. She married Wilbur Johanson on November 18, 1937. He passed away November 29, 1975. She has lived in the same house since she married Wilbur.

One of the many amazing things about Gladys, at least to me, is the fact she has 14 children, having them all within 20 years. And… of these 14 children seven were boys and seven were girls. When I think of the stress we go through today raising one or two children, I can’t imagine raising 14. Yet, I always remember Gladys smile and her kind heart for everyone. Her smile today is as welcoming as it ever was. She has a happy glow surrounding her.

Gladys was a stay-at-home mom until later years when her final child was in school. She then entered the working world at Stamper's factory and she never missed a day of work in the ten years she worked for them. I wonder how that happened with 14 children, even though at that point all were not still at home, we all know kids and germs go together and illness usually follows the adults in their life. How many of us now could say we haven’t missed a day of work in ten-years?

Here is another little tidbit I didn’t know. Not only did Gladys take care of her house and her children she also was the bookkeeper for her husband’s carpentry business. Remember there were no computers back in those days just brain work and the pen and pencil and maybe a typewriter.

I had the joy of sitting down with Gladys and her daughters Corrine, Kim, and Dawn. I admit I had lots of questions because I was curious, not only on tips for aging but having been an only child myself, how it felt to be one of 14 children.

My experience in knowing some 100-year-old people has been that they didn’t seem like people that worried a lot. I asked Gladys about that. She answered, “I never worried, tomorrow was another day.” And, “When there is a will there is a way.” As for being 100, she said she really didn’t feel any different than when she was younger. Her daughter Susan in an email told me as Gladys aged and started to discover things that she could no longer do she would announce with a chuckle, “Well, I guess I can’t do that anymore.”

One of the things Gladys and her children attribute to longevity is a healthy diet. The backyard was a garden and Gladys and her husband raised the food for their family. The gardening became an assembly line and even the smallest child was put to work doing something. Canning was a big part of their life in having their homegrown food year round.

According to Gladys daughters, each child had their own job. Saturdays were cleaning day and you did not go anywhere until the chores were done. And if you are a teenager out there today reading this column—the kids in this family had to earn money and put their own gas in the car if they wanted to drive.

Gladys is a fabulous cook and the girls shared one of their favorite dishes was their mother’s mashed potatoes. Corrine stated, “It must have been the love she put into it.”

Supper was always served at 6:00 p.m. and family members were expected to be at the table at that time. “When you heard the whistle blow you knew it was time to be in for supper,” Corrine reminisced. “The table was always set correctly and she still does that today.” The Johanson’s had different sets of dishes for every day than for special occasions. And prayers always did, and still do, accompany Gladys meals. Faith is an important staple in her life. The prayer at dinner: Abba Lieber Vater from her German roots.

At 100-years-old Gladys eyesight is still stellar and she can read the tiniest print. Her spelling and penmanship today are perfect.

Sitting down again after all these years at the Johanson table I still felt the comfort of being a part of the atmosphere. I felt the love this family has for one another with Gladys being the role model for generations of Johanson’s. These parents had the secret we are all looking for in raising our children and it was summed up by a statement from one of the daughters. “We had discipline but we always felt showered with love.”

Gladys has twenty grandsons, eleven granddaughters, twenty-one great-grandsons, nineteen great-granddaughters and three great-great-grandsons. And she has made a quilt for each one.

After spending time with Gladys I realize she led a simple, hardworking, content life knowing what was important and what wasn’t, and she is reaping the rewards of a long life with a family that loves her. Isn’t that what we all want but forget when we are caught up in the world we live in today? Gladys is a role model for all of us.

I would say Confucius statement fits perfectly with this family. Gladys planted a seed, the trees grew and those trees blossomed and planted new seeds for generations to come. Happy 100th Birthday, Gladys.



A wonderful return to Brilliant, Minnesota!

I fell in love with Jezabelle Jingle, and her hysterical, eclectic friends in book one of this fun mystery series, THE PENDERGHAST PUZZLE PROTECTORS. I’ve been wanting to get back to Brilliant ever since.

Author Julie Seedorf makes the world of cozy mysteries her own in every delightful book she writes.  And she certainly doesn’t disappoint in this second book of her Brilliant Minnesota Mysteries. Jezabelle and crew are in rare form and funnier than ever! I had more laugh out loud moments than I could count while reading, THE DISCOMBOBULATED DECIPHERERS.

There was so much happening in this story. So many mysteries and/or mysterious things continuously popped up throughout the tale, I simply couldn’t put it down until I knew if they were all connected. Trying to “decipher” the clues along with the characters left my head spinning! I mean that in a good way. My brain really got a workout.  

If you love great mystery, quirky characters, and a clean and fun read, THE DISCOMBOBULATED DECIPHERERS is just the book you want!



Winners will be chosen after December 20
at the end of the tour

One lucky reader will win a print copy of


Enter using the 2nd Rafflecopter form at the end of this post.

USA only


As human beings, we are always a work in progress. From birth to death we live, hurt, laugh, cry, feel, and with all of those emotions we grow as people, as family members, and as friends. I am a dreamer and feel blessed to have the opportunity in my writing to pass those dreams on to others. I believe you are never too old to dream and to turn those dreams into a creative endeavor. I live in rural Minnesota and I am a wife, mother, and grandmother.
I have worn many hats throughout my lifetime such as working as a waitress, nursing home activities, office manager and finally computer repair person eventually owning my own computer repair business. I never forgot my love of writing and quit my computer business in 2012 after signing a contract with Cozy Cat Press for Granny Hooks A Crook, the first book in my Fuchsia, Minnesota Series.
Adding four more books to the Fuchsia Series, adding a new Brilliant, Minnesota Series and writing a column for local newspapers feeds my writing creativity.
I also dabble a bit in watercolor painting and hope to eventually add pictures to my children’s book series, Granny’s In Trouble.
Oh, and did I tell you I like to be a little bit silly.

Author Links: Website: 
Sprinkled Notes Blog: 
Merchandise from my books: 
Purchase Link - Amazon 

December 7 – Babs Book Bistro - SPOTLIGHT, RECIPE - E-Book Giveaway
December 8 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews - REVIEW
December 9 – Books,Dreams,Life – SPOTLIGHT, RECIPE
December 10 – Laura's Interests - REVIEW, CHARACTER GUEST POST
December 11 – T's Stuff – INTERVIEW - E-Book Giveaway
December 12 – Cozy Up With Kathy - CHARACTER GUEST POST
December 13 – Lisa Ks Book Reviews - REVIEW, GUEST POST - Print Book Giveaway December 14 – A Holland Reads – SPOTLIGHT
December 15 – Valerie's Musings - REVIEW, GUEST POST
December 16 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – SPOTLIGHT - E-Book Giveaway December 17 – The Self-Rescue Princess - REVIEW
December 18 – Paranormal and Romantic Suspense Reviews - SPOTLIGHT
December 19 – StoreyBook Reviews - SPOTLIGHT, RECIPE
December 20 – The Pulp and Mystery Shelf – INTERVIEW

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  1. Sounds like a fun new series, thanks to Julie for the giveaway!

  2. Thank you for the information on both The Discombobulated Decipherers, author Julie Seedorf as well as your review. I know I'd love to read this book as well as others of hers.

  3. This sounds like a fascinating series. Would really like to read.

  4. Thanks for the information and review about THE DISCOMBOBULATED DECIPHERERS. I've very much love to read this book!

    I also enjoyed reading about Gladys. What an inspiration!

    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  5. This is a really great examine for me, Must admit that you are a single of the best bloggers I ever saw.