Monday, March 25, 2013

Romance Novels Saved Me :)

I went through a period in my life where the only thing I would read was romance novels. A co-worker got me started and used to bring in boxes of her old romances for me to borrow. I had never really read a “romance novel” before but I ate these up. Then I moved to Oregon for a year with my now ex-husband and during that year that lead up to our divorce and the year after it, romance novels saved me. They really did. In Oregon, I was miserable and depressed and far away from family. I needed an escape and a chance to catch my breath from dealing with real life. The trip to the library was one of the highlights of my week. I read my way through countless numbers of books. Regency and historical romance were my favorite, but I read just about anything as long as it was in the romance genre. Even after the divorce when I moved back home for a while and was struggling and so unhappy, I just kept reading. I don’t know why but for some reason reading about two people falling in love and overcoming some kind of obstacle and ending with hope for the future (if not happily ever after) was exactly what I needed to believe in, in spite of the fact that my own marriage didn’t last.

I look back on those books with a great amount of fondness and happy memories. I don’t even know half the authors I read, but I do remember Julie Garwood, Lynn Kurland, Nora Roberts, Judith McNaught, Johanna Lindsey, Diana Gabaldon, and Julia Quinn to name a few.  A few years ago I tried to re-read one of my favorites from Judith McNaught and it didn’t hold up well for me, even though I had re-read it many times before.  I tried a couple more times with the same result so I just stopped trying.
I don’t read many books that would be considered straight romance any more. I like them in small doses and have new authors that I prefer. But if you look my preferences and look at the books I consider my favorites, almost every single one of them has a romance or a romantic sub-plot or relationship arc. It holds true even with the books that were favorites growing up. In fact, I really believe that just a small bit of romance makes almost any book better. I’ve learned that I make my own happiness whatever my circumstances, but what is it about happily ever after that we crave so strongly?  I’m definitely not alone in feeling that way.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

1 Year Down

I started this blog 1 year ago today, mostly to see if I could use a blog to document what I was doing with my life. This will be my 34th post and I’m pretty sure I don’t actually like blogging. Mostly because I’m not really a writer and it’s hard for me to get my words down on paper or in print form. I was always better at grammar than creative writing.  Plus, blogging takes some time.  LOL – And I’d rather spend my free time reading.  However, I’ve decided not to give up just yet, mostly because I’m just not ready to quit.

On the home front, I’m in the mood to purge. Could it be because it feels like spring is coming? I already cleaned my freezer and some of my kitchen cupboards and I’m going finish that this week. Then I think I’ll start on my closets and then my garage when it’s a bit warmer. It always feels so nice to get rid of things I don’t need, don’t want, and don’t use.

Friday, March 8, 2013


I finished my CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) training class last night. We had our disaster simulation exercise and it was very interesting, and a lot of fun. We were in a warehouse and had a drama club from a local high school act as the disaster victims. They had been all bloodied up and were moaning and screaming and did a really great job of acting like they were hurt and in shock. I was on the rescue team and had some catching up to do since I missed that class while I was in Texas. I’ve never been in a disaster and it gave me a lot of things to think about.

I took the class because it was something to do outside of my comfort zone and I would like to be able to keep my head about me and help my family and neighbors in a disaster.  I didn’t study the information in the book as well as I could have although I do have it now for a resource. But I came away from the class with a couple things. First, I have an outline of a plan to get myself a little better prepared for an emergency and I want to sit down with my family and make sure we all get better prepared. And second, I won’t be any use to anybody doing medical triage or search and rescue. :) Even the sight of fake blood makes me a little queasy and I don’t deal so well with panic. So I’ll be working on clean up or somewhere else away from the bodies in the event of a disaster. And that’s ok. Better to work with my strengths and leave the other things to people better able to handle it. So all in all, it was a good experience and I learned some valuable things.

Now I’m trying to think of what I might want to do next. I genuinely like learning and trying new things.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

There and back

I spent last week in Texas for work.  It was a good trip despite the fact that I woke up Monday morning with a cold. I went from this:
To this:

 Of course, by the time I got home, the new snow had pretty much melted away. That’s the nice thing about this time of year. Even when we do get more snow (which we probably will), it doesn’t last long and I know spring is coming.

Small town Texas is definitely not for me but it was a good trip. I crashed when I got home on Friday and took it easy all weekend. Now life is back to the usual routine.