What I miss the most…

CoronaVirus has locked me at home since mid-March–six months to the day. At first I thought it would be a three to four weeks confinement and accepted the situation with resignation. I prepared myself a uniform for grocery shopping, something easy to wash regularly, and I chose a pair of pants and a long-sleeved shirt I was about to give away, my oldest pair of sneakers, a cap, and the little yellow purse I hate. Unfortunately after three washes, these clothes shrank…and I uploaded five pounds all around.

In front of Walmart

But grocery shopping once a month was not enough outing for oxygen breathing. I was suffocating at home, writing eight hours a day or chatting on the phone. I hardly saw my grandchildren once or twice a month, on the beach or in their backyard, always with masks on and never for more than twenty minutes. To exercise, without mask, I walked on the building catwalk with my Fitbit recording 4 to 5 miles a day. I lost my claustrophobic feeling but developed a horrible pain in my left heel, diagnosed as Plantar fasciitis by the podiatrist. I had to stop walking and I started swimming–actually floating with a noodle–in the ocean, or swimming in the building pool if I was on my own or with only two or three people. Now I bought a foot peddler and use it while watching TV at night.

Life has changed so drastically. I miss hugging my grandchildren. I don’t even see the Chicago grandkids. I miss seeing my friends and our Saturday evening dinners in a restaurant or at each other’s place. I miss shopping at the mall or my favorite stores. After gaining fifteen pounds during this pandemic, my wardrobe is reduced to a pajama with elastic band and a t-shirt. I miss wearing dresses, jewelry, makeup. And oh God, how I miss going on cruises! I don’t think I’ll ever feel comfortable in a plane or a cruiseship again.

Unfortunately, we lost too many relatives during the last six months, two to the Covid-19 and several to strokes, heart problems, and even a goal bladder inflamation, all not treated on time for fear of going to the hospital. I was tested once for Covid-19 when I had a cold in July and was so relieved the results were negative.

Now I live day by day. It’s too depressing to remember the easy-going life from before Pandemic and too scary to think about the future. As long as I can swim, use my peddler, cook and write, I count my blessings.

I just uploaded four new books, funny stories and heart-warming romance that will cheer you up. They are on pre-order:

His Son, Her Daughter: High school sweethearts reunited after twenty years by their small children. Their conflicting baggage prevents them from fully trusting each other. Yet what wouldn’t Daniel do for his son and her daughter? https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08HKPNRWH

To be RELEASED on Septenber 23, 2020

Sunshine Over Snow: When his children manage to ruin his second wedding, Brad is caught between a furious fiancée and an offended ex-wife, both determined to keep him and make him pay for his mistakes. https://www.amazon.com/DP/B08HHNSSSK

To be RELEASED on October 14, 2020

Half a Dozen with Love: At twenty, Tammy is left with the responsibility of five brothers and sisters. Dr. Jack Conan stops the Foster Care system from separating the children, but his unorthodox solution may complicate Tammy’s problems—or bring her into his arms? https://www.amazon.com/DP/B08HKQSRYC

To be RELEASED on December 2, 2020

Between Babies and Girlfriends:Abandoned baby twins, a former girlfriend, an almost fiancée complicate Dr. Brian Dutton’s life to no end.

To be RELEASED on February 11, 2021

Sunshine after the stormS

We’ve had our share of storms this year, medical, political, and natural storms, including the most recent one, first labeled hurricane, but in spite of the weather forecast prediction, Cristobal was kind enough to shift west and then north. This past week, we had a gorgeous weather in South Florida and the ocean looked so appealing, I couldn’t resist. After several months of lockdown I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed my first swim of the season.
The residents of Fort Lauderdale are mostly retirees and wise people who follow instructions and take the right precautions. No crowd on the beach. Mostly couples strolling, often with a mask on.

Two days ago I received an incredible surprise: my granddaughters’ visit. Number One turned sixteen in May and just received her driver’s license. With their masks on their faces, they signed up at the front desk of the building where a security guard recorded their temperatures. They went directly to the beach. My husband and I were waiting for them on the terrace. We took off our masks and headed straight to ocean. No hugs. I haven’t hugged them since February. This was the first time in four months that we indulged into spending time together. But what a fun time it was dodging the high waves. I lost my cap and my granddaughter saved my prescription glasses and ran to hide them in my flip-flop on the sand. After an hour, soaking the salty water, breeze and radiant sunshine, they left. They didn’t come upstairs to the condo to change or eat something, but drove straight to their house. Welcome to our new way of family life.

Maybe we will feel normal again, eventually. Although I’m not ready yet for shopping or eating at a restaurant. But the stressful lump in my throat is slowly melting away and I’m writing my new book with a light heart, and not because I have nothing else to do.

A Dance for Prince Eric: A ballerina on the run for her brother’s sake. A prince who saved them both. Do fairytales exit?
DOCTORS IN LOVE: Passionate and Dedicated, with dynamic and life-saver heroes And intelligent, warm-hearted heroines.
DOCTORS IN LOVE 2 – Sexy and Determined, the docs alleviate suffering, protect life and health, and restore respect for human beings
IRRESISTIBLE WEDDINGS Romantic, joyful, lavish, unexpected, noisy and fun. Special weddings with hot grooms and lovely brides. All about love!
SWEET AND SASSY DADDIES- Nothing tugs at the heartstrings more than the sight of a loving single dad caring for his child
CUTE BUT CRAZY: Undeterred by misadventures and challenges, these strong-willed ladies take life and love by the ears, embracing the men they have chosen through good times and bad.

Staying healthy

I found this article carefully saved in my To Keep folder. “The 10 Best Fat-Melting Foods” as suggested by Lucy Danziger. I don’t exactly agree with all she suggested.  But with the pandemic confinement, I added twelve pounds and I’m seriously concerned about not to being able to shed them.

Apples: This fruit’s 4 to 5 grams of fiber not only are filling but also help ferry out some of the fat and calories you take in from other foods. YES, AGREED
Lentils: These legumes are rich in resistant starch (RS), a carbohydrate that may encourage fat burning and shrink fat cells. NOT SURE.
Sweet Potatoes: These spuds have RS, the same carbs found in lentils that may turn up the body’s fat-scorching furnace. RS may also increase production of peptide hormone compounds that signal the brain to stop eating. I RARELY EAT THEM. Eggs: The breakfast staple is loaded with choline, a compound known to help block fat absorption. YESSSS!!!
Edamame: The green soybeans supply 17 g of protein per cup, and your body torches more calories digesting protein than it does processing carbs and fat. NEVER TRIED IT.
Kiwifruit: A large kiwi has 84 milligrams of vitamin C—more than a day’s quota. C helps form carnitine, a compound that transports fat into cell mitochondria, where it’s burned for energy during exercise. NOPE. I PREFER MANGO.
Wild salmon: The fish’s omega-3 fatty acids could help you fight flab more effectively. They alter the expression of certain genes, shifting your body to burn fat rather than store it. ONCE A WEEK IS A MUST ON MY TABLE.
Yogurt: Lowfat and nonfat Greek and regular yogurts contain 20 percent or more of your daily calcium needs. The mineral slows production of cortisol, a hormone that encourages belly-flab buildup. DAILY. SEVERAL TIMES A DAY.
Quinoa: A complete protein, quinoa has all the essential amino acids needed to build metabolism-revving muscle. LOVE IT, BUT I DON’T KNOW HOW TO COOK IT. INSTEAD I COOK RICE.
Olive oil: Healthful monounsaturated fats found in olive oil could potentially switch on genes related to fat burning and storage.
the weight that dieters who ate the same calories but less total fat and protein and more carbs lost, a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine reveals. A MUST FOR ME.

Sitting at my desk six to eight hours a day doesn’t help. But writing is as important to my soul as comfort food.

Recommending the following books and boxes of books:

ON AMAZON: What could be more exciting for a American architect than to live in a French chateau owned by a handsome count, and to work on the restoration of a chapel in the Loire Valley?But when her professor is killed because he knew too much about a missing statue, Cheryl’s summer job changes into a dangerous treasure hunt and Count François is faced with a difficult choice. Are the statue and his chateau worth endangering the life of the impetuous young woman who’s turned his life upside down?

ON AMAZON: Natalie Borikev’s dream is finally materializing with a fabulous contract to dance on a Las Vegas stage. To save her young brother from drug addiction, she escapes to Boston with Eric Devereux, a devil-may-care, running away from gambling thugs. In Boston nothing is as Natalie expected. Her charming rescuer is actually a prince with bright prospects, but she lost everything—her budding career as a dancer, and even her brother’s affection.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08413RKNN/
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B084HNMFBL
https://www.amazon.com/ebook/dp/B084FJFCFB/
http://mybook.to/IrresistibleWeddings
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0855W6MLB/

At Home by Mona Risk

Is it four weeks or six weeks that we have been locked at home? I can’t remember, but it seems like two years. Getting dressed, wearing a few pieces of jewelry, and fixing my hair are now nice memories. I stopped opening my closets. What for? My getting-dressed routine of the morning consists of choosing between two pajamas pants and a few black t-shirts–easier to wash it all together.

We live in a high-rise and we used to have a gorgeous view. Not anymore. In September, our building association had contracted a company for concrete restoration. So all balconies were blocked in September, the rails removed and the balconies’ floors repaired. And then the Pandemic started and the workers stopped coming. No rails, no balconies. No beach and no pool.

Who cares? For every problem, there’s a solution. Right?

Two weeks ago, I discovered that the catwalk, a walkway around the building used as an emergency exit, was still accessible, yet not used by anyone. A bit too high for my taste considering I suffer from ‘Acrophobia’ or irrational fear of heights. But in time of need, one would adjust to anything. At first I held my husband’s hand, and just looked at the floor, and then it got better…

The walkway became my walking track, with fresh outdoor air to breathe, no need to wear a mask, and a view to lift any mood. So now I walk four to five miles a day. Soon I’ll stop worrying about the extra weight I added at the beginning of our confinement. And I published a book, and started a new one.

Here is my new book, just released last week:

A Dance for Prince Eric: A ballerina with a promising career on the run for her brother’s sake. A charismatic prince who saved them both. Do fairytales exist?

I am also happy to share two new boxes, one with hilarious books and another with tender, emotional stories.

Sweet & Sassy Daddies

US: https://amzn.to/3bBBMGg #ad

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B084FJFCFB

CA: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B084FJFCFB

AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B084FJFCFB

IN: https://www.amazon.in/dp/B084FJFCFB

NL: https://www.amazon.nl/dp/B084FJFCFB

DE: https://www.amazon.de/dp/B084FJFCFB

Cute but Crazy

US: http://bit.ly/RomComCBC1
Universal: https://books2read.com/CBC1