Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Romance By Any Other Name by Lori Wilde + Giveaway

Banner made by Beth from Maybe Tomorrow?

Keeping in line with my extending Valentine's Day, today's guest is another highly acclaimed and beloved romance author: Lori Wilde. I just recently discovered Lori and her novels when before Christmas I read The First Love Cookie Club and instantly fell in love with the charming story. I can't praise and recommend it enough! If you want a sweet love story, perfect for the holidays, you should absolutely read it!

Ok, I'll cede the scene, please welcome Lori Wilde who's going to talk about some gestures you might not call typically romantic but due to the underlying thoughtfulness they most certainly are.

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Romance By Any Other Name
by Lori Wilde

I’m a romance writer, so you’d think I’d be pretty romantic myself, right? Alas, that’s not the case. My husband, Bill, is the romantic one. He fills my life with smiles and kisses, frequent hugs and “I love yous.” I feel so lucky to have a man who’s not afraid to express his emotions.

But more than just telling me how he feels, he shows it. Since our marriage fourteen years ago, I’ve put gas in my own car less than a half-dozen times. Bill takes care of it.

I must confess he had me so spoiled I often forget to check the gas gauge. When his mother was going through radiation for breast cancer, I was driving to her house forty miles away, five days a week for six weeks to take her in for her treatments. One day, the “check engine” light came on and I stared down at a complete empty gas gauge. I made it to the gas station just as my car ran out of gas and rolled to the pump on fumes.

“You’ve got to stop putting gas in my car,” I told Bill after that. “I’m too spoiled. I need to take care of myself.”

He looked at me puzzled. “You don’t want me to take care of you?”

“It’s too romantic. I’m not as romantic as you. It’s feels unbalanced.”

“What do you mean, you’re not romantic? You’re driving my mother to the hospital for her treatment every single day. Neither one of her other daughter-in-laws offered to drive her even once. That’s pretty damned romantic in my book.”

I’d never thought of it that way. To me that’s just what families do for each other.
Another time, on a trip to Yellowstone, I found myself in need of a hat. Normally, I am not a hat person, but the sun was brutal and we were going bear watching, so we dropped by the gift shop to peruse the selection of headwear. The choice was quite limited and I ended up with a plain white cap. I’d wanted a souvenir of our trip, at least something that had Yellowstone written on it, but never mind.

We began our trek in search of bears. Hours later without a bear in sight, we ended up walking along the riverbank, a bit disappointed, but just happy to be together in the wilderness.

“Hey,” Bill said, “will you look at that?” He bent down and picked up a fuzzy purple and turquoise fly fishing fly. “Give me your cap.”

I handed him my cap and he painstakingly affixed the fly to it so that it wouldn’t poke me in the head, but was still securely attached. It looked quite jaunty and when Bill saw how pleased I was with the result, he said, “Let’s look for more.”

We combed the riverbanks and found a rainbow of flies. By sunset my cap was full of colorful flies and we turned to make our way back to the car.

“Honey,” Bill whispered and laid a gentle hand on my shoulder. “Look there.”

I glanced over and on the other side of the river, about the length of half a football field away, was a bear drinking at the water’s edge as the sun spread a vivid pinky, purple haze over the horizon. It was one of the most beautiful and moving (and a bit scary) things I had ever seen.

Bill took my hand and guided me back to the car and we spent the rest of the evening talking how it was one of the most romantic moments of our marriage. When we got home, I put that cap on a prominent place on my souvenir shelf to remind me that romance comes in kinds of shapes and colors.

So what about you? We’ve all gotten flowers and candy and while they are nice, they aren’t the true expressions of love. What are some of the most romantic things anyone has ever done for you? What unexpectedly romantic things have you done for other people?


GIVEAWAY RULES:

Lori has very generously offered 5 copies of The First Love Cookie Club to 5 lucky commentators who live in the US or Canada.

The First Love Cookie Club
To be entered all you have to do is:

1. fill out the main form so I have your contact info (just once, if you have already filled it out for a previous giveaway that's enough)

2. Leave a comment/question for Lori, answer her question: tell us what are some of the most romantic things anyone has ever done for you? What unexpectedly romantic things have you done for other people?

Giveaway is open to the residents of the US or Canada and ends on Friday 4 March 2011.

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