Category Archives: Real-Life Romance
Love stories abound this month, but I know you’re busy. So on a practical, and succinct, note I’ve curated the best stories. Quoted and paraphrased for brevity. Here we go, 60 seconds of IRL love:
“Costco. Bought one tire at a time until I worked up the courage to ask him out.” (17 + years together )
“She was my student. Adult ESL.” (9 years)
“It was after the war. My best friend’s boyfriend’s buddy needed a dance partner.” (50+ years)
“1965 anti-war protest. I was studying to become a priest.” (40+ years)
“Scattering the ashes of deceased husband.” (3 years)
“Knew him from square dancing. We were doing dishes when he threw the dishtowel over his shoulder, got down on one knee and proposed.” (20+ years)
“On the job. Funeral home.” (25 years)
“On the bus, commuting to work. Saw each other every day.” (30+ years)
“Conference. Slept together before our first date.” (15+ years)
“Too broke to take a vacation, I played tourist with my best friend and an acquaintance set up a sailboat trip for us. Met the love of my life.” (50+ years)
“Overseas. Volunteer relief work. I was drawn to his compassion.” (20+ years)
“She put her paw in my hand. Everything went still in that moment.” (6.5 years)
‘Tis February — the month of Valentine’s Day! So I thought I’d share a few things I love. Because, er, the world needs more love, yeah?
First, even though I’m a little behind on newfangled music, I stumbled over this song from a country-western singer (!) that I loved. It has an odd sci-fi quality to it I thought. Plus…love. Apparently the heroine in the video is also the singer’s wife. How delightful is that?
Second of the things I love… I finished a book! The first of 2017. 🙂 Man, I LOVE the feeling of finishing a book. It’s a new title from one of my pen names, Jenna Dales, who has been sadly languishing on a far back burner while I cavort with my other pen name, Elsa Jade. I’m tempted to pit them against each other in a Thunderdome-style write-off. But that wouldn’t be very loving, would it? So in the interests of fairness, sisterhood, and romance, Jenna Dales’ story is off to New York and while we wait to hear back, Elsa Jade is going to write the next story. Wish me lucky in love, and we shall see whom readers love more!
And thirdly, for a touch of real-life romance… Here are my two best beloveds, both of them smiling.
Happy almost Valentine’s Day!
Since I’m single and in my late 30’s, I feel like I need an excuse for why I’m still alone or I fear that my friends and family will come up with their own ill-fated conclusions. My shield of armor has always been to deflect with humor. In my 20’s I used to joke that my Prince Charming must have been hit by a bus and he lacked health insurance. When I hit 30, I turned the tables on my interrogators by joking that I’m clearly no good at finding a man so they must add finding me a husband to their to-do list. Ha-Ha! That should buy me some more time.
So while I’m waiting for love to magically show up at my doorstep, here are some of the lessons I have learned over the past 27 days at See Jane Publish…
· I might already be having lunch at the same place as him. (Thank you M.L)
· I might have already met him but he needs time to grow into a better man. (Thank you Melissa)
· I might have to think outside-the-box and spend more time at Costco. (Thank you Jamie)
Once I find him…
· I have instructions on how to write him love letters. (Thank you Linda)
· I have some tips on how to have a happy marriage. (Thank you Nancy)
· I have to get an FTD Membership to be able to afford all the flowers I could get from my husband (Thank you Sheryl)
SJP wanted to do something special for the month of February to honor Valentine’s Day. Since one of the main complaints about my beloved Romance genre is that they say love in those kinds of novels don’t exist in real-life this is my opportunity to thank all this month’s wonderful guest bloggers for sharing their stories to prove otherwise. If for no other reason, maybe I, your Single Jane, just needed to hear them.
Note from Jessie: Cassiel Knight is one of the original “Janes” coming back to share her wonderful engagement story with us. As a sneak preview, I’m not surprised that this tale (pun intended) involves a dog because canine companions are central to her life and one of the many reasons we are such good friends.
Most women, I think, want a romantic proposal story. I feel fortunate I that, for this romantic month, I have one to share.
Steve and I had been dating for almost a year but were friends before that so we had some time in together. In fact, at that time, we were living together pretty much meaning I had a room in the dormitories on base at Hickam Air Force base in Hawaii but I wasn’t staying there. Marriage had sort of come up, I remember it did but don’t remember specifics. In April of 1990, my birthday month, we were just doing our thing and decided to go out to dinner and take a walk on the beach near sunset. Not a bad way to spend the birthday day. Don’t ask me what I ate or where; can’t remember. But I remember the beach.
We pulled into one of the many little sites along the coast and headed to the shore. Not too long into our walk, we were so caught up in each other, talking and laughing, we didn’t notice a sneaker wave until it came up and smacked us both from feet to knees.
It was a tiny bit chilly so Steven said he had a blanket in his car so off he ran. Once he got the blanket, we sat, dried-off, talked and gazed out at the water.
Shortly after sitting, a dog (a lab or retriever-type) and owner approached from my left. It ran up to me at the blanket and…promptly peed on the blanket nearly on top of me. Steve was not happy.
So two things had happened: getting smacked with a wave then a dog peed on the blanket.
I was fine; it really set the tone for our relationship and marriage—if it’s odd, it happened to us. But of course, since he had something else planned for that time, being wet and peed on was not on this list of romance and he was kind of stressed.
Still after we shooed dog and moved to dry side of blanket, Steven turned to me and casually said something along the lines of “what’s your birthstone again? Peridot, right?”
I remember laughing and saying no then he pulls his hand out of his pocket and says, “Well, maybe this will do” and handed me the ring. Not in a box that I can recall. Just the ring.
I think I looked at it, him, then it again then throwing my arms around him, hugging and crying. He pulled away and said, “Does this mean yes?”
For the next 23 years, he liked to tell people how he never proposed to me; he merely gave me a birthstone ring and I took it from there.
About the Author: Multi-published author Cassiel Knight takes paranormal romance to new heights and in new directions by infusing her stories with strong heroines, noble heroes, sharp-edged plots and exquisite detail. Fascinated by the lore of mythology and ancient civilizations, she creates fantastical worlds that span multiple dimensions and cut across past, present and future. Her stories feature fallen angels and demons, contemporary men and women, and futuristic secret agents. A perpetual student of history, Cassiel devotes significant time and energy to researching and studying archaeology, folklore and legends. Her ability to seamlessly blend fact and fiction produces stories that pull readers in from the very first page. Cassiel’s books are available from Samhain Publishing, Lyrical Press and Champagne Book Group. For more information, visit www.CassielKnight.com. Follow her on Facebook (CassielK) and Twitter (@CassielKnight).
Note from Jessie: Nancy Brophy is one of the original “Janes” coming back to See Jane Publish to share lessons learned from her marriage. I have long envied the success of their marriage. A couple that can survive a house fire and laugh about it now must know some secrets to being in a happy partnership.
The first time I saw my husband, he stood across a professional kitchen from me. Like Harry Potter coming to Hogwarts, Chef Brophy came to teach cooking school. I knew immediately he was the guy for me. Tragically, he didn’t have a clue.
But that isn’t the story I’m going to tell you about love. Because while heart may have recognized heart (in my case, not his) that alone would not have carried us for the twenty-plus years we’ve been together.
Both of us had previous marriages. In my case the marriage was complicated, but short-lived. In the end we experienced a very polite uncoupling. I was so proud of our civility. We simply discovered we’d made a mistake and moved on. Ta-dah!
My husband’s first marriage was neither short-lived, civil, nor polite. After two decades of marriage and one child there were a few issues to handle. I did not break up my husband’s first marriage. Nor did I participate in the battle that ensued. But I was also not entirely innocent. Without me in the picture, would he have returned home? He said not. But still I wondered.
I was prepared for him to leave. I don’t remember a day I wasn’t expecting to hear the words, “I’m sorry, but I think I have to give it one more try.”
But being a writer does not entitle me to get to edit the scenes of my life.
He did not leave. Eventually, the prolonged war ended with a whisper of smoke, dissipating in a breeze.
You know that joke where the woman says, “Husbands are like puppies, they have to be trained. And the first sentence I taught him was ‘everything goes with diamonds’?” What I discovered was that my husband was training me, as well. Here are a few of his lessons:
- One of us does not slip out of the house in the morning without kissing the other good-bye.
- Being busy, doesn’t mean we get to skip the opportunity to tell the other how much they mean to the relationship.
- Gifts are not mandatory on Valentine’s Day, but the minimum of a card is required.
- Say ‘I love you’ every day. Respect the other person. Speak up for them.
- It’s not the big gestures that count. It’s the little everyday nothingness that keeps up together.
When we were rebuilding from our house fire, I choose the color “crushed berries” for our dining room. It is a deep, rich fuchsia. When it first went on the walls, grown men clutched their chests and made a strangling, gagging noise while they entered the room.
A man, who works with my husband, took him aside and asked, “What were she thinking?”
My husband smiled and said. “It’s not finished yet. In the end it will be perfect.”
If tomorrow Dan announced we were done, I would fight to keep him. There would be no polite uncoupling, because I can no longer imagine my life without him. How could I sleep at night without him by my side?
Love grows. Our marriage is not finished yet. Nor is it perfect. But it’s getting closer.
About the Author: I live in the beautiful, green, and very wet, Northwest, married to a Chef whose mantra is: life is a science project. As a result there are chickens and turkeys in my backyard, a fabulous vegetable garden which also grows tobacco for an insecticide and a hot meal on the table every night. For those of you who have longed for this, let me caution you. The old adage is true. Be careful what you wish for, when the gods are truly angry, they grant us our wishes. And the payment is always high, I fight an insidious ten pounds every year of my life.