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Emily Westhill runs the best donut shop in Fallingbrook, Wisconsin, alongside her retired police chief father-in-law and her tabby Deputy Donut. But after murder claims a favorite customer, Emily can’t rely on a sidekick to solve the crime—or stay alive.
If Emily has learned anything from her past as a 911 operator, it’s to stay calm during stressful situations. But that’s a tall order when one of her regulars, Georgia Treetor, goes missing. Georgia never skips morning cappuccinos with her knitting circle. Her pals fear the worst—especially Lois, a close friend who recently moved to town. As evening creeps in, Emily and the ladies search for Georgia at home. And they find her—murdered among a scattering of stale donuts . . .
Disturbingly, Georgia’s demise coincides with the five-year anniversary of her son’s murder, a case Emily’s late detective husband failed to solve before his own sudden death. With Lois hiding secrets and an innocent man’s life at stake, Emily’s forced to revisit painful memories on her quest for answers. Though someone’s alibi is full of holes, only a sprinkling of clues have been left behind. And if Emily can’t trace them back to a killer in time, her donut shop will end up permanently closed for business . . .
Guest Post: How to make a toy for your cat BECAUSE YOUR CAT IS NOT SPOILED ENOUGH ALREADY
Deputy Donut, the café in SURVIVAL OF THE FRITTERS, is named after Emily Westhill’s cat, Deputy Donut. When Emily and her father-in-law Tom designed the café, they set aside one room for a combination office and kitty playground.
Dep goes to work with Emily and stays in the office and kitty playground combo. The room has windows on all four sides, looking into the dining area, the kitchen, the parking lot in back, and the driveway. One door leads directly outside, and the other leads into the dining area. If Dep tires of napping or keeping an eye on everything through her windows, she can climb carpeted columns, stairways, and ramps, and then she can run around the perimeter of the room on catwalks above the windows.
Dep likes to take her toys up to those catwalks. She also likes to drop them and watch them bounce and roll. Here’s how to make one of Dep’s favorite toys for your cat:
- Faux fur, two pieces about five to seven inches square. Choose fur with flexible, knit backings. I raided my stash for scraps, white for the “icing” and a golden beige, like a fried donut (well, sort of), for the bottom half of the donut, but maybe you’d like strawberry pink or chocolate brown icing. The backing of the fur in my stash wasn’t as flexible as I’d like.
- A few handfuls of polyester stuffing
- A teaspoon or two of catnip
- Cut two rounds of faux fur, 5”– 7” in diameter. If the faux fur in your stash is heavy or stiff, cut bigger rounds. I traced around the top of a bowl. Pin or clip the rounds together. In the center of one round, draw a small circle. I traced around a quarter, but for heavy or stiff fur, tracing around a nickel might have worked better. Use a ruler to draw a straight line from the edge of the circle to the edge of the fabric pieces.
- Starting close to the cut line, backstitch and then sew around the small circle. Don’t worry if the sewn circle isn’t round—donut holes seldom end up round. Leaving an unstitched space at the straight line, stop before your original backstitching and backstitch that end of the almost-circle. Remove the donut from your sewing machine and cut along the straight line and then around the inside of the circle, leaving a scant quarter-inch seam allowance. If your faux fur is stretchy, you don’t have to clip the seam around the inner circle.
- Backstitching at the one of the edges where the straight line was drawn, and with a quarter-inch (it doesn’t have to be exact) seam allowance, stitch around the outside of the circle, easing the top fabric as necessary. Don’t worry about any little pleats you might make or about stitching in a perfect circle—donuts aren’t perfectly round. Flip the donut over and check for stitching that went off or is too close to the edge. Re-stitch those sections with a quarter-inch seam allowance.
- This is the hardest part, especially if your faux fur is stiff or thick—turn the donut (it’s now a curved tube) right-side-out. Then the project becomes easy again. Holding the donut upright so that both open ends are up, stuff the donut, alternating polyester stuffing with pinches of dried catnip. Keep adding bits of stuffing until the doughnut is rounded, but still soft.
- Now for the second hardest part, and it’s not that difficult—slipstitch the two open ends to each other, finishing the donut shape. Mine ended up with catnip sprinkles. I don’t think the cat will mind . . .
About The Author
Ginger Bolton writes the Deputy Donut mystery series–cops, crime, coffee, donuts and one curious cat. When Ginger isn’t writing or reading, she’s crocheting, knitting, sewing, walking her two rescue dogs and generally causing trouble. She’s also fond of donuts, coffee, and cafes were folks gather to enjoy those tasty treats and one another’s company.
Ginger has joined Killer Characters! http://www.killercharacters.com
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