Ten Things

I have stayed productive this week, the way my mom used to stay busy as a means of coping with anxiety. I’m not writing new words lately, but I surely did buzz through Lady Daisy’s copy edits, and I found a cover image for Andrew, and I got both Gareth: Lord of Rakes (republished version) and the Holiday Duet uploaded onto the web store… I’ve done my daily steps like a boss, kept an appointment with the derm (and the liquid nitrogen keritosis zapper), and read a ton of amazing manuscript pages for an upcoming writer’s workshop.

All of which helps me feel more able to cope with a daunting world. And yet, staying busy is just one coping mechanism. For me, it also helps to have things to look forward to, and lots of ’em. The smiley faces on my calendar remind me that life is sweet, I have friends and writin’ buddies, my work matters, and I have reasons to rejoice. What’s on my things to look forward to that list?

A new Difficult Dukes title from Loretta Chase comes out Dec. 1, 2020: Ten Things I Hate About the Duke. ANYTHING written by Loretta Chase is cause for joy on my TBR shelf.

I’m having lunch (take out, consumed outside, sitting six feet apart) with my friend Graham. This solves all the problems of the world in about two hours flat.

The first snow flurries. We had the first frost last week. Next comes snow (but not the day I have lunch with Graham, please)!!!

Bridgerton!!! The first episode airs Christmas Day, so move over John Thornton, Mr. Rochester, and Darcy, because you have excellent company and lots of it.

Closing on the sale of my daughter’s house. We had three offers within 72 hours, and for that, I am so grateful I could just about swoon.

The blooming of my amaryllises. I have one that’s on its fourth bloom, but I’m sure I will acquire amaryllises as well. I find flowers more irresistible than ever in winter.

Spotting my first cardinal of the winter.

Baking homemade bread. I do this when it’s REALLY cold, which is also the only time I allow myself hot chocolate. Winter is for comfort food.

Climbing to bed at the end of each day with Gus (has the best purr), and a good book. I consider ending my day this way one of the greatest luxuries known to humanity. I’m reading a biography of Thomas Hardy at present–the Victorians were mighty peculiar.

And, lest we forget, next week’s publication of The Truth About Dukes. Both the Library Journal and Publishers Weekly gave Robert and Constance’s tale starred reviews, and at least for me, that never happens, so I’m doubly excited to see this story hit the shelves. What are YOU looking forward to? To three commenters, I’ll send signed print copies of The Truth About Dukes!


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42 comments on “Ten Things

  1. I’m looking forward to:
    -Reading the witty dialogue in Ash and Della’s love story!
    -Treating my melancholia w a wholistic approach vs rx drugs (so far so good…)
    – Getting fall plantings in the garden, as they will bring much beauty and color next spring, plus spread joy when I give away bouquets. Cut flowers and romance novels are MY JAM. Thank you for sharing your gift of beautifully written love stories, GB!

  2. We are updating/revamping/redoing our finished basement. Work began ten days ago and it should be finished next week FINGERS CROSSED. 🙂 I am looking forward to it being finished so we can enjoyed it. I expect we’ll be spending much time getting our library organized with the brand new shelves…so excited!

    I look forward to a low key holiday season for a change…I’ll miss some things, but not most of the craziness. If there is anything I’ve learned during the Pandemic, it’s what’s important and what is not.

    • I have saved a lot of money this year because I haven’t traveled. I figure I’ll donate most of it to the local food bank or electric bill fund, but the sum was eye-opening. Scotland is not cheap!

  3. I am looking forward to my weekend walks with my neighbor. We walk , talk and solve problems …LOL.

    My living room furniture is being delivered this week. Am so excited! My goal of getting the room to be used as a living space is within sight.

    Baking. I am baking bread, muffins and scones. Winter means baking for me.

    Looking forward to sharing turkey dinner with two of our friends this year.

    And it makes my day when my Rose greets me in the morning. Am thrilled when she eats her kibble and demands her walk. She reminds me to be greatful.

    • This has been a year of little things meaning a lot–the ability to take a deep breath, for example. Hug Rose for me, please. I’m missing few old friends right now myself.

  4. I’m looking forward to the Veterans Day discount at my local supermarket. 10% off is not to be sneezed at on a fixed income!

    I’m looking forward to having my permanent crown installed. The lab botched things the first attempt while I was having my root canal & the temporary has popped off twice before my long-suffering dentist went for her version of super glue.

    Finally, I can’t wait for the end of hurricane season. Eta is potentially crossing the state next weekend & squirting offshore over the top of me. While I’m happy to take one for the team if it will keep Louisiana from getting hit just as they’re getting things cleaned up, this one has a history of spinning up fast & I selfishly want it to stay below hurricane strength.

    • Where you are, this is NOT the most wonderful time of year, is it? And a bad crown is a thing of exquisite misery. Hope you do get it resolved, and that it stays resolved. Geesh.

  5. I am most looking forward to resuming a life of normalcy. However, as I know that won’t arrive for quite a while, I am making plans to do the best we can. In November I always start baking my Christmas cookies. In past years I’ve baked over 700 cookies to serve at our holiday parties & give out to family & friends. I’ll be cutting back this year as we won’t be hosting or attending many gatherings, though I will still deliver platters of cookies where possible. Also, I’m planning for a “socially distant” (as much as possible) Thanksgiving celebration with my two children, their significant others, & my grandchildren. My plan is to stay outside around the fire pit for as long as possible. Then I will set up individual tables for each family in our large family room, with a ceiling fan and an air purifier running. We will wear masks when not actively eating, sanitize our hands before serving ourselves at the buffet, and hope for the best. As seniors, we are doing our best to survive this and our family and friends are very respectful of proper protocols, so I am confident we will be able to approach what passes for normalcy this year! Stay well! Stay safe!

    • The things we’re having to think of this year… I was so, so grateful to have pleasant weather this week. My parents spent their last 40 years in San Diego, where 90 percent of the weather was pleasant. It makes a different to mood, mobility, and now… sociability.

  6. I am looking forward to my son coming home from college for Thanksgiving and staying until mid-January (they are doing exams online from home between Thanksgiving and Christmas) – one happy thing due to The Virus.

    I am also looking forward to the birth of my first grandbaby in mid-January and hopefully being able to get up to Virginia to help out for a bit. Finished knitting a baby hat today. Ordered nursery furniture online that was delivered over the last 2 weeks. So happy for my daughter and her husband.

    • That is something amazing to look forward to, a new era for the whole family, and such a symbol of hope. LIFE goes on!

  7. I’m rereading the Lonely Lords and enjoying them. As I know the first few all take place at the same time I’m enjoying the casual mentions of events from one to the other. Looking forward to the Last True Gentleman, which I pre-ordered early last month. I reread books I enjoy as comfort and distraction in times of stress. I’m healing from a tooth extraction and I find pleasant distraction to be the best painkiller

    • The dentist… Just as I’m hoping every head cold is not The Virus, I’m hoping every mouth-twinge these days doessn’t turn into a tooth behavin’ badly. Glad the books are a comfort, because writing them is certainly a comfort to me.

  8. I am looking forward to keeping the holiday traditions as best I can this year. I am looking forward to eggnog and fruitcake. To holiday decorating and writing holiday cards. To cooler weather.
    And to many other things that I won’t post here in the interests of keeping things nonpolitical. I like that this is a kind and gentle site with lovely readers and lovely author, and I revel in civility. So let’s keep that going!

    • Thank you for your restraint. I am looking forward to not having to exercise my own QUITE so much.
      I see the eggnog in the stores already and tell myself, “Not yet. No. You may have one quart… later.” I do the same thing with gingerbread slice and bake cookies. I know they are full of hydrogenated death, but still… one batch a year.

  9. I am looking forward to finishing my Thanksgiving Happy Mail. I am making thankfulness bags for those I have come to know and hope to send them out on Friday. I will be working on Christmas cards and packages too. I am waiting for your book to arrive. I am remembering my mom and how we would always share things we were thankful for. I miss her but am thankful to have had her. Thank you for your great books! Have a blessed week!

    • I wonder if more people will turn back to Christmas cards this year as a means of staying connected. Only one of my six siblings sends out a family update, but I love reading it and learning what everybody’s up to.

  10. I have The Truth About Dukes pre-ordered, and am definitely looking forward to that. Please send the signed book to someone else, as I only read ebooks now and I am sure there are people here who love to read physical books.

    Well, right now I am just enjoying 3 days off from work next week and catching up on some reading. Unfortunately, I also have to catch up on housework, but it is good to have a roof over my head, even if it is also over quite a lot of mess.

    • I commend you for tending to the house work. I do the minimum, and wait for the rare urges to get after a project. I am usually stuck on a book when that happens, and my cleaning spell is a way to handle the writer’s anxiety. Still… it checks a box, and this house has a lot of boxes.

      • I don’t know how much will get done over the next 3 days but at least there will be some improvement. I am retiring around next mid-year (that’s the plan anyway) and most of the clearing of our hoarder’s nest will take place after that. We just have too much stuff, three shedding dogs, and 7 house cats. The hair alone is unbelievable.

        I am counting my blessings these days, so want to say thank you for the books you write and for this very enjoyable blog. The nicest people visit here!

    • Oh, no, you all have reminded me of eggnog. Bad, bad, bad. I will definitely be coming home with eggnog next week. My cholesterol will just have to take the bump.

  11. I’m preparing a very personal holiday mailing to my clients. I ordered non specific holiday cards wishing peace to all. I’m enclosing a half sheet personal message reflecting on 2020 with special thanks for trusting their business to the company I work for and printing it on vellum to lay in the card. I’m also enclosing a small sprig of Rosemary for remembrance, love and friendship. This is one of those years when I really want everyone know we’re all in this together and I’m looking forward to sending out this special message.

    I’m also looking forward to my favorite holiday candles. There’s just something special about a house full of warm holiday fragrances. It makes a house a home.

    And then there’s mulled cider and baked apples. Truly a fall/winter tradition in this neck of the woods.

    The thing I look forward to the most is that intense faith filled season that is Christmas. A season centered on the love of our Lord and the hope of better days ahead. Decorating for Christmas is my favorite thing to do. I take two weeks of vacation every year to get it done and to take some time to truly reflect on the season.

    God bless you all. Stay safe and stay healthy.

  12. I’m looking forward to:
    * THE TRUTH ABOUT DUKES – Congratulations on the dual starred reviews!
    * Cooler weather and the cool weather foods: Chili, Chicken Tortilla Soup, Chicken & Dumplings, and Roasts & Veggies.
    * Thanksgiving – even though we are not going to be doing the ‘normal’ turkey day thing.
    * The Bridgertons
    * The end of 2020 and the hope that comes with a new year.

  13. I am looking forward to finally finishing putting all my plants to bed for the winter. We have had record breaking heat and sweating outside in November is.no.fun.

    Even though I just got back from a vacation to the quietness of the beach, I am already praying I am fortunate enough to go next year. Reading on the beach under the umbrella is just the best thing ever for peace of mind and soul.

    And I look forward to Dukes, Dukes, and more Dukes. Love those rakes too !!!

  14. Looking forward to making the Christmas time baked goodies. The chocolate Advent calendar will be in the store soon, along with the Christmas Stollen. I should be receiving my everyday Dirndl soon. Fully machine washable! I don’t have to take it to the dry cleaners after food or drink gets on it. I will be able to wear a Dirndl more often now.

  15. It’s going to be 80 today here (nearly 25 degrees above average). What is this winter you speak of? 😉 I’m planning to wear shorts and run the AC. I can’t wait to read your next Dukes book — and yay for starred reviews!

  16. I’m looking forward to the end of 2020. And the beginning of a new year. The only thing that’s saved this year, for me, has been: Starbucks. Their insta posts on fall tunes was fun. Their comments always sweet. And let me just say, “Pumpkin Spice Lattes are back!”

  17. I just had an eye exam last week and found out that I don’t need any glasses except the my reading glasses. After having worn glasses over 60 years it’s very strange to not need them any more. I’ve got two upcoming doctor’s appointments, one tomorrow and another on Saturday, and I need to call and try to schedule my next Rheumatology appointment. Next week I have an appointment to hopefully get a state ID so I can then find somewhere to live so I don’t have to sleep on my daughter’s couch anymore. I answered a knock on the door earlier to find a gentleman from the school district who asked me about school age kids, there are four here so they gave us a bag of food for each child, it had a corn dog, a taquito, lots of fruit and veggies and at least 7 half pints of milk along with one half pint of orange juice. This school district has some of the lowest income people in the city so they’re trying to help out as much as possible. I’m still reading as much as possible and my Kindle is loaded with all sorts of books. I just finished The Earl Returns (Lords of Sussex 1) by Lillian Marek last night an after reading it I’ve found a new author and I’ll be ordering more books by her in the future. I also ordered the Loretta Chase book you recommended as I really enjoy reading her books, thanks for letting us know about it.

  18. Things I look forward to: cooler weather. Digging in to my TBR pile. Shelling pecans from my sister’s trees. Enjoying a less frantic holiday season.

  19. I wish to lodge a complaint with the Creator!!! When I get a notice that my keeper shelf paperback is delayed in shipment until Eta has done with us, it’s the outside of enough! Grrrrrrr!

    I shall have to splurge on the audio by buying extra credits since November’s hasn’t hit yet & let James Langton read me through the storm. This is turning into an odd tradition that Grace & James keep me company during hurricanes. LOL

  20. I am looking forward to inventive baking. I’ve had to shift my diet because of inflammation and I am enjoying coming up with recipes that meet the new requirements. It is a challenge but I am just knowledgeable enough to be able to make a stab at it creating my own baked goods, and so far so delicious.

    I have a TBR pile a mile high, and I will glory in reading it over the winter.

  21. I have read all of the books and this with Robert and Constance is the best yet. Great Characters. I look forward to Stephens story.
    I enjoyed your contemporary stories and would be glad of some more. In looking at the FAQ’s I laughed to see a question about your non writing work. You do so many books I can not see how you possibly do other work.
    Thanks for a bunch of good reading.

  22. Just love all the Dukes series. I’m currently reading My One and Only Duke for maybe the third time. His determination and her practical good sense is enthralling for me. My favorite is The Heir but that was the first I read and fell in love with your style.

  23. I started reading regency romance novels because of Bridgerton. I love how your books are connected to each other. Building a world within your collection of books is not easy, I’m sure. It keeps me wanting to read the next book and the next series. I love how you have put out a list of what books to read in what order. I haven’t read like this since elementary school (1980’s). I did get into Harry Potter, but haven’t really read since. Lol my family is a tad sick of me reading/listening to books. My college aged daughter will want my attention; I scowl at her and inform her my book is in the middle of a sex scene. She tells me my books are always in the middle of a sex scene. I think she just has bad timing .