Karen’s Killer Fixin’s with NOT A SISTER WIFE, Stewart Falls Cheerleaders Book Six #YA #Friendship #Non-Fiction by Shannon Kennedy #Recipe ~ Grandma’s Meatloaf

Karen’s Killer Fixin’s **AUTHOR SPECIAL** with SHANNON KENNEDY!

Welcome to my Friday bonus feature called Karen’s Killer Fixin’s **Author Special**!! Today, instead of one of my recipes, I will introduce you to a new author who will share one of her favorite recipes. Not only will you and I occasionally learn how to make something new and delicious, but we’ll also get a chance to check out some fantastic authors. Introducing author SHANNON KENNEDY and her favorite recipe for GRANDMA’S MEATLOAF!


Stewart Falls Cheerleaders Book Six


With the help of her best friend, Samantha Tiernan-Bradley, 14-year-old, Jeannine Vandermiller escaped from the Truth Keepers, a polygamous community in Montana where she’s lived her entire life.

The last thing she intended was losing her beloved family when she ran away because she didn’t want to marry the bishop of their fundamentalist church and become his latest celestial or spiritual wife. She always thought she’d marry the boy next door when he finished law school. They were supposed to have their Promise Ceremony this summer, but that was before the bishop chose her as his next sister-wife.

Jeannine feels all alone in Stewart Falls, Washington. Everything is so different, not just a brand-new school with harder classes for girls. There are strange clothes and forbidden activities like movies, cell phones, computers, jewelry, cheerleaders, and boys too! And Samantha has changed too. Jeannine wonders if she still trusts her best friend.

What can she do?

Will she ever be able to return home?

And does she want to?



Stewart Falls Cheerleaders Book Six




Providence, Montana
Monday, March 26th, 2019

My mother and our next-door neighbor, Sister Elizabeth Bradley were baking custard hand-pies for the quilting bee later this week. Personally, I didn’t see the need to spend the next two days cooking for the upcoming visit by most of the women in our church. We could buy an assortment of cookies and pastries from the bakery in town owned by one of Sister Elizabeth’s grown daughters where I worked after school. I really liked Naomi Bradley who let me use her computer to play games, update her website and email my older brother away at college.

Of course, I knew better than to suggest such an idea and I definitely didn’t share my forbidden activities. My parents weren’t as strict as some in the community, but they still wouldn’t tolerate me speaking my mind and if one of the elders or the bishop learned what I actually did at the bakery, I’d have my name read as a sinner at Sunday services. Maman rarely sent me for a switch anymore. She said at fourteen, I was old enough to marry, to be a wife and mother, too old to be whipped like a sassy-mouthed, girl child. Yet, if I embarrassed the family name, that would change in a heartbeat.

So, I went to the henhouse without protesting to collect eggs when she wanted fresh ones. Besides, I’d been trying to convince her and Papa to let me participate in the ‘Promise Ceremony’ this June when I graduated from eighth grade. I wanted them to announce my engagement to Ephraim Bradley, rather than have Papa keep looking for a husband for me in a different Truth Keeper household, one in a distant state. Acting like one of the bishop’s spoiled town girl daughters wouldn’t endear me to Ephraim’s mother and her husband had a great deal of influence with the elders who advised the bishop.

I slid my hand under the warm feathers of the next Rhode Island red hen and eased out the egg before moving to the next nesting box. The door flew open, and I glared past the clucking chickens toward one of my younger brothers, eleven-year-old Justinian.

“Close that,” I ordered. “I don’t want to chase chickens all over the yard and be in trouble with Papa if I lose some of his prized hens.”

“Okay, okay.” Justinian hastily closed the door. “Don’t get persnickety, Jeannine. Have you seen Papa?”

“Not lately.” Another egg and I moved on, my ankle-length, dark blue skirt swishing under my apron. “Why does Maman want him?”

“The bishop is here with two of his wives and several elders. Maman said for me to fetch the eggs and to see if Papa was in the barn. She’s serving tea and some hand-pies to our guests. She told them she hoped you’d hurry home from the Bradley’s house.”

I blinked, trying to understand the message while I stared at my brown-haired, brown-eyed brother. Maman knew where I was. Did she really want me to go next door? If so, why? Ranches weren’t close in Montana. It always took me and my best friend, Sunny, at least an hour to walk from one place to another. And lying to the bishop? I shuddered. Why would Maman do that? She could get her name read at Sunday services by the elders or the bishop and everyone would be lecturing her for misbehaving, even Papa.

“Sister Elizabeth has her car close by the barn,” Justinian continued. “The back doors are unlocked and there’s a blanket on the seat.”

I stood and stared at him. Justinian wore black pants tucked into his boots, a hand-sewn blue shirt, and a knit cap over his brown curls. He needed a haircut before services in two weeks or he’d be next on the bishop’s list. “What’s going on, Just —?

He paled, more scared than before. “Maman doesn’t know I overheard the talk, but Bishop Zachariah chose you to be his newest, celestial wife. The wedding is in two weeks.”

“No way!” I clenched my fist and the egg broke. Slimy yolk ran down my fingers, pieces of the shell clinging to my palm while the rest fell on the straw covered floor. “I won’t. He can’t make me. I’m promised to Ephraim.”

“He’s the bishop, Jeannie. He does whatever he wants, and he wants you.”

“It won’t do any good for Sister Elizabeth to smuggle me to her house. Brother Daniel, her husband, won’t hide me from the bishop or his enforcers.”

“No, but I think she and Maman plan to get you out of town somehow.”

I shuddered at the idea. It’d never work, and Papa would be furious at the betrayal. He’d already annoyed the bishop when my best friend, Sunny’s mother arrived and took her away after her father, an Army soldier died in Afghanistan. It turned out he’d violated the custody order from their divorce when he didn’t return my friend after a visit. Papa discussed the matter with some of the more forward-thinking elders who didn’t want trouble with the police and so my BFF left for Stewart Falls in Washington State last month with her mom.

The bishop scolded Papa after services on Sunday a week ago and told him that he should have helped take Sunny away and hidden her from the authorities. Papa answered that he’d prayed about it and felt he’d honored God and the community by not bringing undue notice upon us by starting a furor with the authorities. I took a deep breath and then passed the basket to Justinian. “Get the rest of the eggs and bring them to the kitchen.”

“What are you going to do, Jeannie?”

“Go to the house and tell the bishop I don’t deserve such an honor.”

“That won’t work. He didn’t take ‘no’ for an answer when Rachael Fournier didn’t want to marry him, and he won’t listen to you either.”

“No, but if I don’t try to escape today, he won’t expect it when I succeed later.”

“All right.” Justinian nodded. “Only be smart about it, Jeannie. Don’t tell Jake or Jerry about it. The twins always play with the bishop’s boys, and at eight years old, they won’t keep it a secret.”

I wiped my sticky hand on my dress under the apron so the bishop and the elders wouldn’t know where my brother found me in the henhouse. “You’re right, but you can’t tell them either.”

“I won’t.”

It felt odd to trust him more than I did my sixteen-year-old brother, but Jasper always fought with everyone, and I knew when he heard about this, he’d be arguing up a storm with Papa and Maman. He wouldn’t understand they didn’t have much more in the way of choices than we did. If my family wanted to stay on the ranch that my great-grandfather homesteaded before the turn of the twentieth century, they had to do the ‘go along to get along’ dance and abide by the rules of the Truth Keeper community.

Bishop Zachariah spoke for God, and nobody in Providence, Montana dared to argue with him. I wasn’t quarreling with him either. Not aloud anyway. I won’t do this. I’m not becoming a sister wife. Not now. Not yet! Even if nobody knows, I promised Ephraim I’d marry him and that’s exactly what I’m going to do!

While I helped Maman fix supper three hours later, she cried while she peeled potatoes. I went over and took away the paring knife before she cut herself. “Don’t, Maman. I’ll do it. This is a tremendous honor, but I’m unworthy.”

“They won’t let me take you to Missoula to buy material for at least a suitable wedding dress.” Maman sniffed hard, more tears raining down her cheeks. “I thought we had more time. The ‘Promise Ceremony’ is months away. Your trousseau chest is less than half-full. We’ll be shamed in front of the whole congregation in two weeks. Sister Marion will taunt me, your aunties, and grand-mère for months until you have your first son —.”

I nearly stabbed a potato before I managed to control myself. She’d raised her voice, so she’d be heard in the dining room where two of the elders sat waiting for the meal. Didn’t she know they’d overhear this conversation? I wasn’t marrying the bishop, not in two weeks, not ever. I didn’t say that.

I focused on the bowl of potatoes in front of me and followed her example, speaking for the audience. “Perhaps, we could ask Papa if we can use the telephone after supper. If you call your sisters and mother and beg for their help, they might aid us in filling my hope chest with household linens and other goods. Granted, they will not be new, but we could say they are family heirlooms. That would give them status —.”

“Do you think that will be suitable, chérie?” Maman hugged me quickly and leaned close, whispering. “Keep up the act, Jeannine.”

“One can only pray it does but remind them not to share the keepsakes from your great-grandmother. It will break Grand-mère’s heart when Becky and the rest of Bishop Zachariah’s daughters destroy them.”

My comment brought Elder Gauthier into the kitchen, a hulking, gray-haired giant in a formal dark suit like Papa’s but my father only wore his at Sunday services and on special occasions. The elder glared at me. “You should not be so disrespectful of your future daughters.”

“Tell them that,” I retorted, careful not to raise my voice and pretended peeling potatoes took most of my attention. “Becky constantly bears false stories about me and my friend Merry Sunshine Bradley. You’ve read her name more than once on Sundays and made her beg forgiveness from the community. She will be very angry when she learns of my new status, especially when she must mind me and call me, Maman.”

Elder Gauthier’s scowl deepened, and he narrowed his gray eyes. “I must discuss this with the bishop. You are very young, Jeannine Vandermiller, but you’ve always been an obedient daughter of the community and a credit to your family. None of the elders have ever felt the need to chastise you. It’s why the bishop chose you.”

“I try very hard to honor my parents and their raising,” I said, in my sweetest voice and saw him nod agreement. I certainly didn’t mention it was all a part I played. I did my best to act unobtrusive, modest, and quiet like a mouse, the way a girl was supposed to be in the Truth Keeper church and community. How was I to know it’d recoil on me like a rattlesnake?

Only Sunny knew the truth and helped hide it. I spent too much time on the Internet or snooping around listening to other people’s conversations. If any of the elders or the bishop actually knew the real Jeannine Yvette Vandermiller, I’d have my name read at every Sunday service as a sinner. The bishop didn’t trust me or my parents, or he wouldn’t have left two of his strictest enforcers behind.

Most of the elders used their first names like other men in the community, but not the more senior ones. No, they opted for their last names because they thought they were better than others in our church. Dread swept through me, and I took a deep breath. I wouldn’t be the bishop’s newest wife. No, not me. It wasn’t happening to me. I wouldn’t let it.

On Sundays when Jasper’s name was read, he’d argue with the bishop or the elder who claimed he’d broken the tenets of our church. My older brother always refused to apologize to the community for his sins. Maman would be crying because we had to leave before the meal with our friends, relations, and others in the congregation. Jasper would be defiant all the way home and my four younger brothers would huddle in the back seat of our car, hoping Papa didn’t remember their errors in judgement. I’d be busy trying to comfort Maman.

When we finally arrived home, my father always sent Jasper to fetch the razor strap hanging on a nail in the back porch. Papa didn’t use the flexible, long, rectangular piece of leather to sharpen his straight razor like his father had. Instead, he, Jasper and the belt disappeared into the barn with Papa saying, “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.”

By the time they came in for supper, Papa’s anger would have melted, and Jasper’s eyes were red. None of us mentioned he’d been crying, and he’d go to my mother and apologize for her mortification.

She always forgave him. I hoped she’d understand and forgive me when I ran away. I didn’t know where I’d go, but I wasn’t staying in Providence, Montana or marrying the bishop. I won’t be a sister wife and have a baby before I’m fifteen. I won’t!

About Author Shannon Kennedy…

Shannon Kennedy lives and works at her family business, a riding stable in Washington State where she teaches all about horses to beginners. Her life experiences span adventures from dealing cards in a casino, attending graduate school to get her master’s in teaching degree, being a middle and high school teacher, and serving in the Army Reserve – all leading to her second career as a published author. She recently retired from teaching school and plans to write more books for Fire & Ice YA, the Stewart Falls Cheerleaders realistic fiction series and the Shamrock Stable series about teen girls and their horses.


Links to Shannon’s website, blog, books, #ad, etc.:

Amazon Ebook: https://amzn.to/3x6e5pl

AmazonPrint: https://amzn.to/3Vjh3Pm

Nook Press:
Not a Sister Wife by Shannon Kennedy | eBook | Barnes & Noble® (barnesandnoble.com)

Smashwords: Not a Sister Wife (smashwords.com)

Not A Sister Wife eBook by Shannon Kennedy – EPUB | Rakuten Kobo United States

Website: www.shannonkennedybooks.com


I hope you enjoy the recipe Shannon is sharing today on Karen’s Killer Fixin’s. Happy Eating!


P.S. We’re at 697 recipes and counting with this posting. Hope you find some recipes you like. If this is your first visit, please check out past blogs for more Killer Fixin’s. In the right-hand column menu,  you can even look up past recipes by type. i.e. Desserts, Breads, Beef, Chicken, Soups, Author Specials, etc.

COPYRIGHT NOTICE: If an author’s favorite recipe isn’t their own creation and came from an online site, you will now find the entire recipe through the link to that site as a personal recommendation. Thank you.


(From Samantha’s grandma & mine)

Mix Together in Large Bowl:

1 pound hamburger
1 pound ground pork or turkey
1 small yellow onion – chopped into pieces
2 eggs – beaten
½ Cup Milk
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon garlic powder
1 Squirt of Yellow Mustard from bottle in refrigerator. (Optional)
1 Cup uncooked oatmeal or breadcrumbs or crackers – (if using crackers, break them up), or crumbled leftover biscuits or cornbread.

Place in a Loaf Pan or shape in a loaf in a Baking Dish.

Cover top with ketchup or tomato sauce.

Bake at 375 degrees until done, approximately an hour. Let rest 5 minutes or so before slicing.

Grandma always served it with potatoes, salad or steamed vegetables and homemade biscuits.

Leftovers are perfect for sandwiches the next day!


Special Giveaway: Shannon will gift an e-copy of Four O’Clock, Montana Time, Book #5 in the series, which precedes Jeannie’s story, to one lucky reader who comments on her Karen’s Killer Fixin’s Blog. Good luck!

Happy Reading!


Thanks, Shannon, for sharing your book with us!

Don’t miss the chance to read this book!

11 thoughts on “Karen’s Killer Fixin’s with NOT A SISTER WIFE, Stewart Falls Cheerleaders Book Six #YA #Friendship #Non-Fiction by Shannon Kennedy #Recipe ~ Grandma’s Meatloaf”

  1. I’m not much of a meatloaf fan. The book, however, sounds interesting. It says it’s part of a series, but it doesn’t say if it’s stand alone, or if you need to read the series in order.

    1. Hey Jaylee,
      It’s book #6 in the series. Book #5, Four O’Clock, Montana Time was about Jeannie’s best friend, Samantha. Meatloaf isn’t for everyone, but my grandma’s was a hit with me. However, she always used up all the leftovers in the fridge when she made it (part of surviving the Great Depression) so it wasn’t for everyone. I think my grandfather and I were the only members of the family who actually liked (loved) it.

  2. Welcome back to Karen’s Killer Fixin’s, Shannon. I love meatloaf. My entire family does, and my recipe is very similar, although I now stuff mine for additional flavors.

    Loved your excerpt. That poor girl! I don’t think any of us can imagine how difficult it is for a young girl in that situation. I need to read this book to discover how she escapes her planned marriage. Your book promises to be an emotional read. Thanks for sharing it with us today!

  3. I look forward to reading how Jeannine escapes this terrible situation. I enjoy a good meatloaf, so I will have to try this one.

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