Crafting Your Unique Love Story This Valentine’s Day by Josie Riviera

With Valentine’s Day behind us, let’s turn the spotlight inward and get on board a journey of self-discovery and self-love. Let’s break free from the traditional notions of romantic love and focus on crafting a unique love story that celebrates individuality, personal growth, and the beauty of embracing the present moment.

Valentine's Day

  1. Love as a Personal Journey: View Valentine’s Day as an opportunity for personal exploration. Acknowledge the highs and lows that have shaped you. Embrace self-love as an ongoing adventure rather than a destination.
  2. Mindful Self-Care Rituals: Engage in mindful self-care rituals that nurture your body and soul. Whether it’s a rejuvenating skincare routine, a peaceful meditation session, or a long walk in nature, prioritize activities that promote self-love and well-being.
  3. Gratitude for Self: Create a gratitude list focusing on the aspects of yourself that you appreciate. Celebrate your strengths, resilience, and unique qualities. This exercise fosters a positive self-image and a deeper connection with the essence of who you are.
  4. Artistic Expression of Emotions: Channel your emotions into artistic expression. Whether through writing, painting, music, or any other creative outlet, allow your emotions to flow freely. This process not only serves as a cathartic release but also deepens your understanding of self-love.
  5. Solo Date Night: Treat yourself to a solo date night tailored to your interests. Whether trying a new recipe, watching a favorite movie, or exploring a hobby, revel in the joy of your own company. This solo date becomes a celebration of your individuality.
  6. Setting Personal Intentions: Set intentions for personal growth and self-love. Identify areas in your life where you can nurture yourself more and commit to fostering a positive relationship with yourself. These intentions become the building blocks of your evolving love story.
  7. Acts of Kindness to Self: Practice acts of kindness toward yourself. It could be as simple as affirming mantras, treating yourself to a favorite treat, or taking a break to relax. These acts create a compassionate and supportive internal dialogue.
  8. Cultivating Self-Compassion: Embrace self-compassion by acknowledging that imperfections are part of the human experience. Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding you would offer to a dear friend.
  9. Embracing Present Moments: Shift your focus to the present moment. Allow yourself to fully experience and savor the joys, challenges, and beauty of now. In doing so, you cultivate a deeper connection with your own narrative.

Appreciate the growth you’ve achieved, and reflect on the chapters of your own extraordinary love story.

It’s a 99 cent Kindle Countdown (US only), for my sweet Valentine’s romance, 1-800-CUPID.

1 800 Cupid

A house flipper looking for quick profit. A survivor with a dream. Can two broken hearts find a place to call home?

Grab your copy today before the price goes up. Available in ebook, paperback, large print paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

A New Hands-Free Way to Enjoy Books! Audiobooks!

Do you multitask: drive, clean house, garden, knit, or crochet while listening to audiobooks or podcasts?

If you do and haven’t heard about Audible Plus yet, you’re in for a treat!

This new monthly subscription program from Amazon is a great bargain! Not only books and podcasts, but Amazon originals, too.

I was introduced to Audible Plus when Kindle Direct Publishing invited me to join Amazon’s beta program for it using their Virtual Voices. I jumped in with both feet. Now over half my catalog of single titles is available to listen to for one low monthly fee. Oh, and the first month is free so it’s a great time to catch up on the Haviland Universe of stories.

I produced/directed every one of the titles I uploaded. When needed, I added a pause or corrected the pronunciation of words read by my personally selected Virtual Voice narrator. I felt that some of my stories sounded best when narrated by a man. The guy I chose has a rich voice, sort of a cross between Sidney Poitier and James Earl Jones. Perfect for my sports-themed stories and That Twin Thing.

An English woman’s voice sounded better for my time travel audiobooks. I also used it for a couple of RomComs and Triplets: Three Aren’t One.

 

If you’d rather buy and keep an audiobook, many times you can buy the corresponding ebook for only $1.99.

#FREE on Friday, February 16th only, then on special low price of 99 cents for the rest of February is AYE, I AM A FAIRY.  This book is also available to listen to for free with your Audible Plus subscription. Over twenty hours of action, romance, and intrigue, narrated by the soothing voice of Number Eight. Check both the ebook and audiobook for ‘take me away’ entertainment. A time travel romance novel, the first of fifteen in The Fairies Saga series:

For a bundle of action, romantic suspense of all flavors to read on your Kindle reader, check out UNFORGETTABLE GUARDIANS. A veritable banquet of themes and characters. Enjoy for only 88 cents or #Free with Kindle Unlimited.

How many reindeer did Santa have?

For most of us, visions of Santa’s magical reindeer fleet begin dancing in our heads as soon as the holiday decorations hit the store shelves. But have you ever wondered about the real-life animals behind the fairy tale?
Reindeer, also known as domestic or semi-domesticated reindeer, are a subspecies of the wild caribou. These hooved mammals inhabit the Arctic and subarctic regions of the northern hemisphere, covering areas like Scandinavia, Russia, Alaska, and Canada. Both reindeer and caribou boast amazing adaptations that allow them to not just survive, but thrive, in some of the planet’s harshest weather conditions. They possess incredible stamina and adaptations for living in extreme northern climates. Their wide hooves act as snowshoes to walk on snow. Special nasal passages warm cold air entering their lungs. Thick, dense fur insulates them against temperatures as low as -50°F. Their seasonal migrations traverse huge ranges as they continually seek out lichen and other sustenance.

One very interesting fact about caribou and reindeer is that the female of the species also gets antlers! Both genders drop the antlers in early winter (painlessly) and regrow them every spring, Do You know what that means? All those pictures of Santa’s sleigh being pulled by reindeer are wrong! Or they’ve been cleverly modified.
As it turns out, reindeer have a truly captivating connection to Christmas. Centuries ago, legends recounted that shamans harnessed the mystical flight powers of reindeer to traverse different spirit worlds. When emerging Christian traditions overlapped with existing pagan yuletide celebrations, the image of a sleigh led through the winter night by flying reindeer took hold in the public imagination.
The famous 1823 poem by Clement Clarke Moore “A Visit from St. Nicholas”- also known as ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ – introduced and popularized the enduring image of Santa and his reindeer to the public consciousness. Their names – Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donder (later Donner), and Blitzen – have become part of the Christmas tradition. Thus reindeer have come to symbolize the Christmas season through their connection to Santa Claus aka Saint Nicholas aka Sinterklaas.

Oh, and how many are there? Well, there are the original eight (named above), Rudolph, and ‘the other’ reindeer, Olive. What? You don’t know about her? Surely you recall the stanza in the song, “Olive the other reindeer, used to laugh and call him names…” That makes ten reindeer.

If you’re ready to tackle the tough side of life, and are ready for some tough gals who come out winners despite adversity, check out RECLAIMING ME, an intense collection of women’s fiction stories by some of your favorite authors. Inspiring! New Release.

‘Tis the Season to connect ~ Christmas Cards by Nancy Radke

I sat down yesterday and wrote out a bunch of Christmas cards to send before the days get really busy. Last year I didn’t get to them until the end of January, and I didn’t want that to happen again. I didn’t want to NOT send any out, as I want the chain to stay unbroken. Time has sped up so much that the months pass by as fast as weeks used to.

Christmas Cards

Connect with friends…

The cards we write at this time of year provide us with the incentive to connect with friends and relatives that we haven’t seen for awhile. For some of them, this is the only time we get in touch. A large Thanksgiving meal still includes only those whom you probably see regularly. Christmas cards reach out to other states and other countries where friends have moved over the years.

I love getting the cards that have a picture of the sender on it. If a short (or long) summary of their year is included, the card is more than just a happy greeting. You find out about their health, new babies, weddings, deaths, and sometimes a marvelous trip that you enjoy hearing about.

Get personal…

The little note I sent out with my cards this year included the expected arrival of another great-grandchild, along with information about my family. I included info on my health, which has greatly improved, including my mind getting clear now that my heart condition has been addressed. I’m still taking some heart medicines, but have reduced them from 5 to 3, plus I am taking the minimum dosages.

I went to Bellingham for Thanksgiving. Rural area. Really nice. Otherwise haven’t gone anywhere this year. No problem, as I’ve been busy.

I am still writing novels, but didn’t finish any books this year as I am trying to get the book of Acts finished for the DVD Show & Tell Bible while I still have my health. This project (1000s of hand-drawn pictures by various artists) was made more difficult as I had to re-do things I thought was done (while in a heart-induced brain-fog). I also put a group of parables and other teachings of Christ onto a program called Doodly. When I do the Gospels (partly done already) I plan to insert the Doodly motion files into it. I am working with my grandson in California to put the Old Testament books up on YouTube, then Acts when it is finished. Hope to eventually get the entire Bible up as a teaching tool.

Look for my novella, Changing Horses, which is a New Year’s story, along with all of my Christmas stories that are on sale. Christmas on Cougar Mountain is free. Look for our Authors’ Billboard Christmas collections that are on sale now.

Early Childhood Education

Keep safe, healthy, and enjoy your life. Have a happy 2024!