Love is in the Air

Or it’s supposed to be, right? It’s almost Valentine’s Day.

As a grownup, I’m not sure what that really means to me. My husband and I have fallen into the stodgy mindset that this is a day created to sell cards and flowers. We will never again make the mistake of heralding the fine dining cattle call on Valentine’s night after a particularly horrible experience at Mr. A’s in San Diego many years ago. It’s not worth the price hikes, cold entrees and hovering wait staff pushing ¬†you out so they can seat someone else at your table. It’s certainly not romantic… With all that there is to be negative and grumpy about on this day…why is it that I still hope he’ll walk through the door Friday after work with an armful of flowers or a box of chocolate? Why is there still some part of me that wants to buy in? Maybe I’m a romantic hypocrite.

Now that I have kids, there’s a whole other — very welcome — aspect to the day. I spent hours filling out Ninja Turtle valentines with the boys… Yesterday we rolled pretzel sticks in white chocolate, covered them with sprinkles and wrapped them up for the big guy’s class… today we’ll make heart-shaped cookies and decorate them for the small guy’s class. I love that they’re far too young to be jaded or put off by holidays that come with lots of glitz and goodies. It makes it fun for me to still be excited.

Actually, my life philosophy — when it comes to commercialized holidays, birthdays, or any other reason to buy a bunch of Hallmark crap and blow paper horns — is that if there’s an excuse to make a day special, shouldn’t we take it? Life can be long and dreary, I think… why not embrace any reason to make one stand above the drudgery of countless days that are all the same? Bring on the glitter and heart-shaped candies! (Now if I could just get the hubs to buy in, too!)

Do you have any Valentine’s traditions? Do you fall on the romantic side or are you more like the hubby, who thinks that he shouldn’t be told when to be romantic?

I hope you’ll share your thoughts… and come back this week for a fun V-day prize pack of awesome books and a gorgeous bracelet, courtesy of some of my author pals! Here’s a quick view of what’s up for grabs… I’ll post the rafflecopter tomorrow!




Help Me Choose a Setting – Win a Book!

Okay guys…I’m done with the draft for Men and Martinis – WOOT! (Which just means that I will put it aside for a week and then have furious revisions to do! Normally, I’d put it down a bit longer, but I’m on a deadline, so five days is about all I can afford.)

That means it’s time to start the next project! And the next project is the next Wine Country Romance. I had so much fun writing about love and wine in Paso Robles, California, I’m ready to build my next sexy wine read. The question is…where shall I set it? I have some ideas, but am curious what you guys think! SO…put your favorite wine country area in the comments and tell me:

  1. Your suggestion (city, state, country if needed)
  2. Why you are suggesting it – did you have a good experience there?
  3. Varietal for which the area is known (if applicable)

I’ll randomly select one commenter to win a copy of A Rare Vintage (kindle or paperback, you choose!) on June 15th.

Have fun!

Hey, Cool! I Won Something!

I never win anything. Seriously, they could have a raffle going on, to which I have every ticket except one. They will call the number listed on the ticket held in the hand of the short sweaty man next to me every time. They will not, despite the overwhelming odds in my favor, EVER call any of the numbers on the nine hundred tickets I hold.

And this is why I am very honored to have been nominated for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award”! (Wait, did I win? Or am I just nominated? When do they announce the winner?) Hmmm, it seems that perhaps I still have not won anything.

Nonetheless, I have been NOMINATED by Eternal Atlantis, a very cool blog written by fellow writer, Luciana, who lives in Australia and writes stories inspired by travels to Italy and Greece. Thank you, Luciana!


It seems that this honor does not come without strings. The rules are listed here:


  1. Link back to the person who nominated you: Thank you so much Luciana!
  2. Post the award image to your page.
  3. Tell 7 facts about yourself.
  • I spend an inordinate amount of time playing with Lego.
  • I am a recovering personal trainer. (Also recovering wine salesperson, travel writer, pharmaceutical sales rep and technology marketing director.)
  • I’m a tech writer in my ‘real’ life.
  • I’m a military spouse.
  • I’m a wine snob.
  • I’m a ballet dancer.
  • I love corn dogs.

4. Nominate 15 other blogs. Wow. 15. Okay: some of these aren’t writing-related… I do have other interests, you know…

  1. Poeta Officium – she’s probably already won this one. Unlike me, I think Virginia wins stuff…
  2. Ermilia
  3. Be Not Afeard
  4. Molly Writes
  5. Novels from the Ground Up
  6. Rae Spencer
  7. Live to Write, Write to Live
  8. Bohemia Speaks
  9. Daniel J. Davis
  10. JQ Trotter
  11. The Misanthropic Hostess
  12. The Selfish Seamstress
  13. Think Liz

OK. Maybe this is why I don’t win stuff. I don’t follow the rules. I’ve only got 13. There are certainly 2 more deserving blogs out there. (But I’m at work and can’t surf anymore. Actual work, etc. GAH!)

Thanks again, and congrats to my own lucky nominees (who now I think I have to email and alert. More time sucking… I may have to delay that… argh! need. more. hours. in. day.)