Saturday, November 21, 2009

Love Finds You in Holiday Florida

Romantic comedy is one of my all-time favorite sub-genres, and today I want to introduce you to one of my favorite writers of inspirational romantic comedy—Sandra D. Bricker and her newest book, Love Finds You in Holiday Florida.

In case you’re not familiar with the Love Finds You books, they are inspirational romance novels all set in real towns across America. So far I’ve enjoyed every one I’ve read, but none more than Sandie’s, because she never fails to make me laugh out loud. That doesn’t mean her books are full of slap-stick, nor are they light on emotion. Not one bit.

In fact, Love Finds You in Holiday Florida has just the right blend of comedy and deeply-touching emotion.

Disappointed that her daughter finds her predictable, Cassie Constantine decides to do something different for Christmas and go to Florida, to the vacation home she shared with her late husband. She also plans to remodel and sell the house before she returns to Boston. But Cassie’s trip to Holiday Florida turns out to be a trip of self-discovery.

Once she arrives at the vacation home, Cassie is faced with a bittersweet array of memories. Saying goodbye to this close-knit community and her goofy neighbors will be difficult.

Then Cassie meets Richard, a man who turns out to be full of surprises. Though he appears as predictable as Cassie imagines herself to be, he is anything but. Can he be the man to help Cassie realize she’s not so boring after all?

During the process of becoming unpredictable, Cassie is trying to work on a crossword puzzle her late husband gave her on their 25th anniversary.

Author Sandra D. Bricker makes clever use of this crossword puzzle by including a clue in each chapter of the book. Will the answers help Cassie discover who she is?

Love Finds You in Holiday Florida is fun, sassy, romantic and heartwarming—all the ingredients necessary for a great romance. In fact, the book is as lovable as the author herself. Readers won’t be disappointed. After you read it, you’ll want to order a copy of Sandie’s previous book, Love Finds You in Snowball Arkansas. My review of this book is posted below.

If you’d like to be entered to win a copy of Love Finds You in Holiday Florida, please leave a reply to this blog. I’ll pick a winner at random tomorrow night (Sunday) at 6pm PST. Be sure to leave your email address so I can contact you if you're the winner. (To prevent spammers from getting your e-mail, please use this format with the brackets—you [at] yourmail [dot] com—or something similar.)

To visit Sandie’s blog go to: and to visit her website, go to:

And be sure to stop by Inkwell Inspirations today, where I’ve posted an interview with Sandie and her co-authors of the devotional book, Be Still and Let Your Nail Polish Dry.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Love Finds You In Snowball Arkansas

Some women will do anything in the search for Mr. Right. Full of sass and spunk, Lucy Binoche takes her quest to the great outdoors. Readers will enjoy following along with Lucy as her journey for the perfect man turns into one of pitfalls, humor, and self discovery.

Author Sandra D. Bricker excells in adding a little extra something in her books to grab the reader's interest. In this book, readers gain insight into Lucy's character through her honest and refreshing letters to God.

And as for her search for Mr. Right? Is Lucy looking in the right direction, or should she stop and reassess her situation? Not only will readers enjoy the added bonus of the tasty recipes sprinkled throughout the book, they'll turn the pages in anticipation of what might happen next.

Love Finds You in Snowball, Arkansas is the perfect book to chase away the winter blues.

Sandra D. Bricker is a delightful voice in Christian romace. This book is great fun, and I can hardly wait for her next one. Keep writing them, Sandie, because I can't read them fast enough.

To visit Sandie’s blog go to:
and to visit her website, go to:

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The Beginning of the Blues

Some people, like my husband, take immense pleasure in the shift from summer to fall. He loves the crisp air, the colors of the leaves as they change. My son loves the winter and snow. But for other people, like myself, when the days are shorter and the sun barely makes an appearance, the blues creep in.

Blue is my favorite color,
but not my favorite season.

My blue season started to hit me last week—dark when I get up, dark shortly after I get home from work. There’s a little sliver of light on the drive to and from work. But in another couple of weeks I’ll be driving in the dark. The only daylight I’ll see during the work week is through the cafeteria windows for half an hour at lunch time. I’m so thankful there was sunshine this weekend.

Within the next couple of weeks, the blues will hit me full force. No daylight. No sunlight. Dark when I leave for work, dark when I get home. And the weekends will be dark and overcast more often than not.
It doesn’t help that baseball season will be officially over in a few days. Every year, I jokingly blame my blue feeling on the end of baseball—especially if my team doesn’t get to the play-offs.

Of course, I’m only teasing about the end of the baseball season being the culprit. In all seriousness, it really is the lack of sunlight that affects my moods. There’s a name for it: Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

Some of the symptoms of SAD are:
 Depression
 Hopelessness or sadness
 Anxiety
 Loss of energy or interest
 Withdrawing socially

If, like me, you’re affected by SAD, there are ways to battle it.

First and foremost, though, if you experience feelings of depression and sadness for more than a couple of weeks, I would highly suggest you see your doctor. Seriously. A day or two here and there when you feel sad or depressed can be manageable without medication. But if it goes on for any length of time, seeking medical help is a must. Especially if you have any thoughts of harming yourself.

One of the best things you can do is to get plenty of exercise. Exercise boosts your mood. If you can take walks outside, even better. You’ll be getting a double benefit. Exercise relieves stress, stress increases symptoms of depression. Since lack of sunlight seems to be one of the main factors in SAD, walking outside in natural light is better than walking indoors on a treadmill. Even though the sun might not be out, some of those rays that stimulate our mood will hopefully get through. Plus, there’s always something truly invigorating about fresh air.

Find things that interest you. When baseball ends, I start watching figure skating. The season actually started a couple of weeks ago, and with the return of Russian skater Evgeni Plushenko, and the excellence of Japanese skater Nobunari Oda, it’s shaping up to be a great season. It soothes my soul to watch these talented skaters jump, spin and glide on the ice.

Try not to shut yourself off from your friends and family. This is one of the fastest ways to give in to SAD and sink into an even deeper depression. While it can be hard to socialize with others when you’re feeling this way, it’s vital to your mental health. Talking, laughing, simply being with others can lift your spirits.

Do things that stimulate your mind and make you happy. Reading a good book serves both purposes for me. (If you need a recommendation, just let me know!) Writing, Sudoku, crossword puzzles, and weekend drives are all great activities. If I could take a vacation to sunny California every winter, I would. But since I can’t, I try to get outside as much as I can during the weekend. The days I don’t are the days I feel the worst.

Talk to a doctor before trying any herbal medications. Many herbal drugs interact with other medications you may be taking.

I don’t know a lot about the full spectrum lights that are available, other than they are supposed to help by exposing you to the natural light you’d normally get on a sunny day. They’re a bit pricey, but they’re supposed to work, so I’m going to try and buy one this year.

Last, but in no way least, pray. Talk to God. Sometimes when we’re depressed, it’s hard to even summon the words. But God knows what’s in our hearts. The Holy Spirit interprets for us when we can’t find the words. So don’t ignore this most important and wonderful resource.

Also, it never hurts to have your friends and family pray for you. If you want me to pray for your, if you want to pray for me, send me an e-mail and we can support each other.
(glorybooks [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Knowing the problem, recognizing the problem, is the biggest part of the battle. When we’re armed with knowledge and a plan, we have the ability to fight our way through it.

Please be aware that this is not medical advice. This is merely my experience, my opinion, and my offer of moral support.

God bless you, and I pray we can all get through these fall/winter blues and rejoice and take pleasure in these darker months. Then, before we know it, it will be spring again.