If You Could Live Your Life Over Again…

If you had your life to live all over again, what would you do differently? Would you go to – or stay in – college? Would you pass on marrying that guy you dated throughout high school and take care of yourself first, not him?
How about never smoking (not guilty)? Or ever overeating (guilty)? Would you have tried harder to make that first marriage work and not rushed into divorce (no comment)?

If any of these thoughts tumble over and over in your head, like dark and light clothes in a dryer, then you might have the internal wiring of a writer. At least, that’s how I started.

‘What ifs’ are great beginnings to fiction! ‘What if a tornado carried a farmhouse in Kansas away to a mystical land and it fell down on a wicked witch, freeing a bunch of little folks from her terror?’ L. Frank Baum wondered, wrote it down, and the rest is literary (and cinematic) history.

Did all the horrible or fantastic events I’ve written about in my thirty or so books actually happen? Absolutely not! How about Stephen King? Let’s hope not! But regardless, creative minds manufacturing worlds and people (and critters) to populate them makes life so much more interesting.
Just because it seems like a great idea, how about grabbing a virtual (or real) box of chocolates and downloading a Valentines Day box set or two or three into your Kindle? They’re free to read with Kindle Unlimited (http://bit.ly/2KuSignUp). Oh, and if you haven’t tried KU, the first month is free! Hundreds of thousands of books to read for only $9.99 a month. And that’s not fiction!
Unforgettable Valentine, A Valentine She’ll Remember and Sweet and Sassy Valentine, dozens of Happy Ever Afters to make you smile or maybe blush…but certainly great diversion.

We all get old in the end – redux

WE ALL GET OLD IN THE END – IF WE’RE LUCKY!
I spent all day dealing with computer issues (and found out what a broken dongle is), so I’m taking the easy way out on my blog and sharing this funny email my brother forwarded to me. I looked for the name of its author, but couldn’t find where anyone claimed credit. Wish it had been me (although I’d call the gunshot sounds backfire noises).
Disclaimer: I’m only 65, so it was 50 years ago, not 60, when I was a teenager.

I changed my car horn to gunshot sounds. People get out of the way
much faster now.

Gone are the days when girls used to cook like their mothers. Now they
drink like their fathers.

You know that tingly little feeling you get when you really like
someone? That’s common sense leaving your body.

I didn’t make it to the gym today. That makes five years in a row.

I decided to stop calling the bathroom the “John” and renamed it the
“Jim”. I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.

Old age is coming at a really bad time. When I was a child I thought
“Nap Time” was a punishment Now, as a grownup, it feels like a small
vacation.

The biggest lie I tell myself is…”I don’t need to write that down,
I’ll remember it.”

I don’t have gray hair; I have “wisdom highlights!” I’m just very wise.

If God wanted me to touch my toes, He would’ve put them on my knees.

Last year I joined a support group for procrastinators. We haven’t met yet.

Why do I have to press one for English when you’re just going to
transfer me to someone I can’t understand anyway?

Of course I talk to myself; sometimes I need expert advice.

At my age “Getting lucky” means walking into a room and remembering
what I came in there for.

Actually I’m not complaining because I am a Senager (Senior teenager)
I have everything that I wanted as a teenager, only 60 years later. I
don’t have to go to school or work. I get an allowance every month. I
have my own pad. I don’t have a curfew. I have a driver’s license and
my own car. The people I hang around with are not scared of getting
pregnant. And I don’t have acne.

Life is great.

I have more friends I should send this to, but right now I can’t
remember their names.

Now, I’m wondering…did I send this to you, or did you send it to me?

Now, don’t forget to add Sweet and Sassy Valentine to your Kindle Unlimited collection (free) or splurge 99 cents to buy this marvelous box set of TWELVE romances for only 99 cents! 

Winter Flu by Mona Risk

Winter may evoke beautiful scenery of snow and Christmas time, but winter is also the time when cold and flu spread; the time for sweaters and coat; and probably hat, gloves and snow boots on certain days.

We spend more time indoors in the winter, meaning that we are in closer contact with other people who may be carrying germs. In planes, buses or trains, at work or in school, we are pressed against spluttering commuters, misting up the windows with their coughs and sneezes. It is easy to see how this could send us over a tipping point that allows nasty germs to spread through a population.

A cold can leave us with the strange feeling that we’ve swallowed a scratchy throat, a running nose and a mild headache; if we’re unlucky, our body is wracked with a high fever and aching limbs for up to a week or longer.

The flu season arrives so predictably when the mercury drops that it is an integral part of winter. In the short days of winter, without much sunlight, we run low on Vitamin D, which helps power the body’s immune system, making us more vulnerable to infection.

This winter season brought a virulent epidemic of flu. I heard that a hospital in California put tents in the front yard to accommodate the flow of patients rushing to the ER and organize an efficient triage.

I was sick too. After three days on home remedies, my cough escalated and I visited my doctor who put me on antibiotics, cough medicine and even steroids. Stay on bed rest and a lot of fluid.

How can you protect yourself and avoid becoming one of the flu victims? I have developed my own preventive system based on doctors’ recommendations, on reading various books and on my grandmothers’ wise advice.

  • Get a flu shot I have been taking it for twenty years. It doesn’t guarantee that you won’t catch the flu but it helps avoid complication such as bronchitis and pneumonia. Avoid shaking hands and hugging too many ‘friends’ and young relatives. Children spread germs much faster than adults!
  • Keep a scarf in your handbag to wrap around your throat if it’s suddenly cold. When I fly I surreptitiously cover my mouth to avoid breathing the germs that the plane fans generously distribute.
  • Gargle with Cepacol morning, night and during the day. When I worked as a pharmaceutical analyst at Dow Chemical, the company placed bottles of Cepacol in the restrooms and insist that all employees gargle after washing their hands. I haven’t been sick during my years at Dow Chemicals.
  • Swallow a Vit C 500mg daily. It boosts your immune system.
  • Swallow a pill of Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc. Excellent to improve your immune system.

And now a few tips from my grandmothers —useful tips that really, really work:

  • Suck on ginger candies such as Ginger Chew from Trader’s Joe. They may taste bitter the first time. Some of my friends spat them right away and yelled at me, but others got used to the taste and liked them.
  • Snack on pumpkin seeds from Publix or Kroger supermarkets–very rich in zinc that boosts the immune system.
  • Savor a tablespoon of honey with a few drops of lemon before you sleep.

Do you have any special suggestion to avoid catching a nasty cold? Please share with us?

You can follow Mona Risk at BookBub and join my newsletter.

While you rest and relax enjoy a few good books by New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors.

Be My Valentine

Valentine Day Heart on White Background

Did you know that on February 14th we are really celebrating ‘St.’ Valentine’s Day? So, who was this saint and what did he do that made him saintly? Actually, three different men named Valentine were martyred and recognized as saints by the Catholic Church.

History has contributed several Valentine legends.

Depositphotos_4962044_l-2015One such legend says that Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage for young men because in his opinion, single men made better soldiers than family men. Valentine continued to perform secret marriages for young couples. His reward? Claudius had him put to death.

Another legend tells of an imprisoned Valentine sending the first “valentine” after falling in love with his jailor’s daughter. He wrote her a love letter signed “From your Valentine.”

The truth behind the legends may be a little murky, but all the stories describe Valentine as a heroic and romantic figure.

So what about St. Valentine’s Day? How did that emerge? Some claim the Christian church created St. Valentine’s feast day to “Christianize” the pagan celebration of Lupercalia, a fertility festival. Members of the Luperci, an order of Roman priests, gathered at a sacred cave where they sacrificed a goat for fertility and a dog for purification. They took strips of goat hide soaked in blood to the streets, using it to smack women to make them more fertile in the coming year.

Holiday Card. Heart from paper. Valentines day

Today, Valentine’s Day is not celebrated the same way around the world. For example, in Japan and South Korea, women give their men chocolate.

In Norway and Denmark, men send rhyming love notes to women anonymously. The woman must guess the sender. A correct guess and she wins an Easter Egg later that year; a wrong guess and she owes her secret admirer an Easter egg.

In Wales, the custom is to give love-spoons, a tradition started when a Welsh sailor carved decorated spoons of wood for a lady he was interested in courting.

 

I’m celebrating Valentine’s Day by offering a Book Boyfriend Valentine for .99 this weekend.DropDead.Twitter Is he Drop Dead Gorgeous or Drop Dead Guilty? You’ll have to read to find out!

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Happy Valentine’s Day!