Saturday, February 17, 2018

Hashtag Perfect Man



I still believe in love. That has been my hashtag as of late. Since the split from my husband back in
September 2016, I had to separate myself from the anguish and pain of lost love and remember that I have value even if he doesn't recognize it right now. And yes, I still believe in love even more now than I did when I was married. I have to.

I believe in the fairy tale. It's not like the Cinderella story where some fabulous Prince comes to sweep me off my feet. Although I would love it if one did, really what I see so clearly in my mind's eye is an around-the-way guy. He would be similar to my father. A jack-of-all-trades.

He's a family man that loves hanging out with my family as much as his own. If he has children, he's a good father that is close to his children and fosters a good relationship with his children's mother(s). It shows maturity when there's healthy co-parenting.

Of course he is tall, dark, and handsome. When I say dark, I really mean DARK.
Like Idris Elba DARK.
Like Djimon Hounsou DARK.
Like Mahershala Ali DARK.

My round-the-way-guy will be handy around the house. I can call my brothers and several cousins to come and fix my garbage disposal but if my man can do it, that would be wonderful. I am pretty sure I could figure it out or find a tutorial on YouTube but can't I just assign that to him?

This guy absolutely CANNOT damper my sense of freedom. I love to travel. I love to hang with my friends on girl trips. I am so trustworthy that me cheating should not even cross his mind when I am on one of my excursions. And if he is suspect it is an indication of where his mind is at and what he is capable of and not a reflection on me. One thing I am, without question, is LOYAL.

He will have charisma. When he walks into a room, he fills it with his presence without saying a single, solitary word.

He will have ambition. His dreams are bigger than life and he is in hot pursuit of them. And if his ambitions are not that big then he will step aside and support all of mine. I have enough big dreams to fill a couple of lifetimes.

He is athletic, loves sports, and is an outdoors man. He is high energy and enjoys physical activity. Although, on occasion, I like to lounge around and watch TV (very rare), most times I rather be out and about doing things outside. I love the ocean. I love the mountains. I really do love long walks and they don't have to be on the beach. I love camping, hiking, and skin diving, snorkeling. I love gardening and growing my own food. I would love it if a man could work the soil right next to me or be in the water with me.

I am a girl that is wild about new experiences. But the perfect man doesn't have to be wild about it with me, he just can't inhibit me or prevent me from exploring. He must trust me enough to NEVER damper my curiosity.

I have a B.A. in Philosophy. I studied the driving factors behind HOW people think. What type of lifestyle does one pursue to live the happiest life? God, sex, religion, politics have all types of "isms" to answer that single, solitary question - How do I live my happiest life? With that being said, I crave a really good conversation - one that pushes the boundaries of my mind. And my mind has a very large surface area of possible topics and ideas. I don't have an ABSOLUTE opinion on everything. Meaning, I am open to suggestions on almost every topic.

I don't need him to be a genius. In fact, there is something to be said about a man who is simple in his day-to-day routine. For a complex thinker like myself, sometimes a laid-back man is exactly what I need. In a conversation I had with my father recently, I was telling him how fast my mind goes thinking about opportunities and wanting to move on them, about wanting a partner that can think as quickly as I do. My father, the humble man that he is, simply said, "Do you ever think about how intimidating you are? I don't know many people that can keep up with your mind." I was so shocked that everything that came out of his mouth after that comment is lost on me. I'm not the most brilliant woman in the world so I certainly did not think that I intimidate people with my mind. I say this only to remind myself that I don't need a complex thinker just someone that is willing to chime in. In fact, the simplicity of a man's mind actually gives me a different spin on my complexity.

Here I am dreaming up the "perfect man," I think I covered the physical clear enough but vague enough to keep me open to possibilities. I think my mental requirements are the same - clear enough but vague enough. Here are my emotional requirements. And it's very simple - I just want a man to take care of my heart. A man that adores me and wants to see me succeed. He pushes me and challenges me but at the end of day will smother me with affection and tenderness and an occasional bouquet of flowers with sweet love notes to remind me of all the reasons he loves me. I feel like I have such a tough exterior and I move through each day pretending to be a boss. I want a man that can reign that in without dominating me but definitely being the head of the household.

Maybe he's out there. I'm sure he is. I will not search high and low for him. I will just sit back and let him find me. #iStillBelieveInLove

Thursday, February 15, 2018

WINNER! $100 Amazon Giveaway

Thank you everyone that participated on Instagram and on Facebook. This is the first promotional I have done and it is certainly not my last. I had a lot of fun and learned a lot as well. Keep reading and watching.

St. Patrick's day is coming up -- another fave -- because it's alllll GREEN. Green is my color, next to my Kahuku/49er/CrimsonTide Red. I will be doing another promo in March.




Congratulations to our winner Shanna Padgett! 
She left the most beautiful shout out. 


Wednesday, February 14, 2018

#iStillBelieveInLove - Valentine's Warm Fuzzy

It's love season. Valentine's is my 2nd favorite day AFTER my birthday. I think I have been so numb for so long that I am rediscovering how to FEEL again. I used to be so moved by romantic gestures when I was young then my heart got broken... twice. I think I've been living in a fog since my first divorce. And now... now I'm ready to feel joy again. #iStillBelieveInLove

When I work on a fiction piece, I try to think of the most over-the-top display of romance and write it into a situation. This proposal right here would qualify as an over-the-top display of romance but this is not fiction and that man is a real man. **insert heart eyes emoji** #iStillBelieveInLove

What makes it over the top for me is not the amount of money he spent. No. His monologue, that speech he gave, is like WOW. I don't know very many men that can articulate their true feelings like that or maybe I just hang around the wrong ones. I love to analyze and dissect everything and get to the meat of things especially when a man claims that he loves me. I need to know the whens and the whys. I need to know if there was something in particular, some small moment when I took his breath away. Not only does this man give this woman that, he tells her what he's going to bring to the table. His devotion. He wants to be the provider. He wants to show her sons how to love a woman.

I wish this were the norm - that a man can see beyond himself and want to be in a woman's life, come what may.
I wish this were the norm - that a man wants to be the provider, the protector.
I wish I weren't surprised by his eloquence.
I wish his ability to express himself was the norm across the masses.
I applaud the woman or man that raised this young man. What a gem.

When my ex-husband and I got married, a month later he was deployed to Iraq with the U.S. Army. I wrote him every single day and sent him care packages every two weeks. But what was so beautiful was the love letters that he sent me. I go back and read those and wish for that love we had back then. It is the stuff that dreams are made of. The romance, his proclamation of undying love for me still makes me swoon even though we're not together anymore. He would always end his letters "Your Husband Forever and a Day." Remember those butterflies? Remember what undying love felt like? If we could have carried that love we had back then all the way into today, that would be so powerful.

Happy Love Day everybody. It's my second most favorite day of the year. Love everyone that is still in your life. You deserve to be happy today and everyday. #iStillBelieveInLove


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Valentines Giveaway: Final Challenge

This is the final challenge.

Participate on my Facebook page and on Instagram. Join the conversation and your name gets entered into the drawing for a $100 Amazon Gift Card -- every time you participate!! 

I draw a winner of the $100 Amazon Gift Card on Valentines Day.

Previous Challenges:

Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #3: Take a picture of your favorite outfit. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove

Challenge #4: Take a picture of your friends. Use the hashtag 4everFriends and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #5: Share a picture of your favorite love movie. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove 

Challenge #6: Share a picture of what you love to do ONLY ON SUNDAY's. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove

Challenge #7: First Celebrity Crush. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove




Monday, February 12, 2018

Valentines Giveaway: Challenge #7

It's Day #7 of my Valentines Giveaway Challenge.

Participate on my Facebook page and on Instagram. Join the conversation and your name gets entered into a drawing for a $100 Amazon Gift Card -- every time you participate!!

Previous Challenges:

Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #3: Take a picture of your favorite outfit. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove

Challenge #4: Take a picture of your friends. Use the hashtag 4everFriends and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #5: Share a picture of your favorite love movie. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove 

Challenge #6: Share a picture of what you love to do ONLY ON SUNDAY's. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove





Sunday, February 11, 2018

Strawberry Letter: 8 Feb 2018 Episode


Thursday, February 8, 2018 episode  of Strawberry Letter on The Steve Harvey Morning Radio Show was "I Think My Mom is a Side Piece."



A woman writes in saying that her mother has been in a relationship for 10 years with a man and has never met his children in all those years. The man has attended family functions with the woman's mother and is very generous with gifts for the family but he has never taken her to meet his children. The woman who writes in seems to think that her mother is having an affair with a married man. Steve Harvey and the rest of the panel agrees with the woman's assessment.

Tommy the show co-host asks, "What does the children have to do with their relationship?"

The woman who wrote in says that her mother gets upset when she brings up the obvious issue -- that the man is married and mama is just a side piece. However, the woman's mother and that man have been carrying on in this way for ten years. The assumption is that mom is "settling" for less than what she deserves. The moral and upright thing to do is to leave the married man alone. Of course that's the simple answer but that isn't the path that the mom has selected. She is obviously enjoying whatever it is that she has with her beau.

Since I have found myself single at the ripe age of 42 years, I can almost relate to what the mom is doing in that she is having a convenient relationship that serves her needs. She gets all the benefits of "having" a man without the commitment of marriage. She's not worried about the domestic duties that come within a marriage relationship. She's not rushing home to cook for her family, not cleaning up after a grown man, not doing laundry, not asking for permission to do things, not having to share her money, etc. Aside from him being a married man, I can see nothing wrong with this arrangement.

Having been married for all of my adult life, I have become very jaded with the idea of marriage. I put in so much work, so much of my heart into two failed marriages. I feel ALL THE WAY done with marriage. Don't get me wrong though, I love being in love but I don't have to be married to be in love. Prior to getting married, first husband and I had a very long courtship. From the time we met to when we got married was just about three years. We separated after four years then divorced two years later. He was my first love. After signing divorce papers, I met my second husband. From the time he and I met to the time we got married was just over seven months. Just shy of 13 years, he woke up one morning and told me he wanted a divorce. I explain this only to say that there is no magic formula. The length of courtship is not an indicator of a successful marriage. I also explain this to say that a marriage is a partnership that requires two dedicated people, committed to making it work through the ups and downs. Falling in love is easy. Staying in love is the tough part. 

Steve's conclusion is that the mom will NEVER meet Mr. Right while she's dating Mr. Wrong. I can certainly understand that. I cannot say when or why I fall for a certain type of man. I just always follow my heart and my feelings and see it through to wherever it might go. My closest friends chime in that I fall for "project men" implying that I like a man that's a little rough around the edges. They need a little work to, according to them, become worthy of me. I can't call it. I love who I love. Certainly physical attraction is always the first thing that draws me in and that is probably the only common trait across my love interests.

I don't normally listen to The Big DM on my commute to work but a dear friend texted me and said I  need to listen in. She felt that there were some common themes with Strawberry Letter and my current love interest. Certainly, whatever he and I have is a little complicated and yet at the heart of it are two people that care about each other. I cannot say why he likes me but I can certainly gush about how I feel about him. And at the end of the day, we are two people with various life experiences. Why the stars saw fit for us to be together at this moment in time is yet to be determined. I see him, with all his complications, and I still choose to be in it. I know what I'm signing up for by being with him and today, I still choose to feel the way I feel about him. My life is much simpler and perhaps that is part of his attraction to me. I can't call it. People observing our relationship think he's all wrong for me. He is the Mr. Wrong preventing me from meeting Mr. Right, as Steve Harvey put it.

But what does Mr. Right look like for me? When I spoke to my father about my current love interest, his only question to me was, "Is he nice to you?" Emphatically, he is very nice to me and I get butterflies in my belly when I think of him. There is no pain associated with him; no broken hearts to speak of. When we're together we laugh without any pretense and truly enjoy each other's company. I have longed to feel that happiness for a long time. The simplicity of my father's question made it very simple for me to decide to continue on in spite of the complications of a relationship with my love interest because he is nice to me and he makes me smile. I feel like a teenager all over again - the raging hormones and the puppy love feeling even though we have progressed beyond that phase, I still feel it and I want to hold on to that feeling for as long as I can.


Valentines Giveaway: Challenge #6

I can't believe it's DAY 6 ... Challenge #6 of my Valentines Giveaway.

Participate on my Facebook page and on Instagram. Join the conversation and your name gets entered into a drawing for a $100 Amazon Gift Card -- every time you participate.

Previous Challenges:

Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #3: Take a picture of your favorite outfit. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove

Challenge #4: Take a picture of your friends. Use the hashtag 4everFriends and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #5: Share a picture of your favorite love movie. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove 




Saturday, February 10, 2018

Valentines Giveaway: Challenge #5

Wow -- late challenge... but here we go anyway.

Participate on my Facebook page and on Instagram. Join the conversation and your name gets entered into a drawing for a $100 Amazon Gift Card -- every time you participate.

Previous Challenges:

Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #3: Take a picture of your favorite outfit. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove

Challenge #4: Take a picture of your friends. Use the hashtag 4everFriends and tag me @loveneenalove



Friday, February 09, 2018

Valentines Giveaway: Challenge #4

Good Morning World. Here is Challenge #4!! 4 more days of challenges. Valentines Day - I will draw a winner for the $100 Amazon Gift Card.

Participate on my Facebook page and on Instagram. Join the conversation and your name gets entered every time you participate.

Previous Challenges:

Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #3: Take a picture of your favorite outfit. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @LoveNeenaLove



Thursday, February 08, 2018

Valentines Giveaway: Challenge #3

Valentines Giveaway - Challenge #3

Participate on my facebook page and get another entry into the drawing for a $100 Amazon Card

Previous challenges:
Challenge #1: Take a picture of something you love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove

Challenge #2: Take a picture of your first love. Use the hashtag iStillBelieveInLove and tag me @loveneenalove