Photo copyright Adele Downs 2016
Archive for the ‘Exercise and Wellness’ Category
The unofficial end of summer has come and gone with Labor Day and the Delaware beaches’ narrow escape from the wrath of Hurricane Hermine. Now that the kids have gone back to school, and the tourist season has ended, lazy days and warm sun on the September sand offers beach living at its best.
The ideal time to beachcomb is during the first low tide after a storm. When Hurricane Hermine churned the ocean off the Delaware shore and littered the coastline with pebbles and shells, I put my writing aside and went on the hunt. Beachcombing is a great way to exercise and enjoy the sunshine, and for shell collectors like me, a fun way to spend a few hours. I haven’t found gold from a pirate’s chest or the remains of a sunken ship yet, but I have gathered beautiful natural treasures for my home.
Here are some of the shells I collected after Hurricane Hermine. When wet, the black and red scalloped shells look especially vibrant. Once dry, they tend to look gray or brown. The prize of the bunch is the tiny slice of very hard to find purple beach glass.
Since the ocean is still churning from the storm system, I plan to go back to the beach at low tide to hunt more treasures. Maybe I’ll find something rare or exotic. Wish me luck!
Photos copyright Adele Downs 2016
The woman who sold her beach house to Steve and me is 100 years old. Although her age is remarkable, even more impressive is that she lived alone until the day we made settlement, took daily walks around our bay community, and grew all her own vegetables in her backyard garden. She painted the kitchen and powder room at age 99, did all her own laundry and cooking, mowed her own lawn, and raked her own leaves. At 100, she finally decided to retire to an assisted living community, and my husband and I were lucky enough to cross her path when that decision was made.
We asked to what she attributed her long life and astonishing good health, and her answer was not surprising. She exercised every day, ate only organic foods, and cooked and consumed the vegetables she grew herself. “You can’t trust what’s in the food these days,” she said simply, and we believed her. Little did she know she’d sold her house to other organics foodies. It must be kismet.
Spring is greening the grass and the daffodils have bloomed around our modest beach home. The vegetable garden behind our little house is almost ready for planting. We can hardly wait to see what grows there. Like the home’s previous owner, we intend to grow organic vegetables, take long walks around the bay, and enjoy our days in the sun. If we’re lucky, maybe we’ll live to be 100 too.
Photo copyright Adele Downs 2016
My husband and I finally did it. After years of dreaming, hoping, saving, and keeping our fingers crossed for just the right deal in the beach community we wanted, we found our piece of heaven. We made settlement on a vacation home at a Delaware beach, my favorite place in the world.
I’m still pinching myself.
We thought we’d need the Property Brothers to help us find a fixer-upper vacation spot, but found a cream puff in our price range, instead. Fresh paint and new siding will make our dream home look like new. We’ve been picking out colors and moving furniture. By summer, we’ll be ready.
I just pinched myself again.
My plans for the upcoming months include working on my next novel in my Florida room. I’ll read books on the beach or by the pool, or surf fish with my husband. My camera will go with me everywhere, and I’ll get the regular exercise I need. I can almost smell the ocean breezes as I write this, and imagine early morning walks on the boardwalk with the other walkers and joggers.
Wish me well, and please be happy for me, because a lifetime of saving and planning has finally come to fruition.
Never give up your dreams, dear readers. Keep working toward your goals, whatever they might be. I finally found the right opportunity, and a place to enjoy the rest of my life.
To celebrate Valentine’s Day during Goodreads #RomanceWeek, I invited actor and cover model John Antorino to visit my blog and show us some love with his newest, better-than-chocolate photographs. John graciously agreed, and told me, “I am big on passion, love, and romance. Not just on this day of love we call Valentine’s Day, but all year long.”
Please be sure to say hello and make John feel welcome in the comments section. When you do, you’ll be automatically entered to win your choice of contemporary romance novella NATURALLY YOURS by Adele Downs or contemporary cowboy short story KISSING HER COWBOY by Adele Downs. Prizes sent via Amazon Kindle directly to your email address. Extra credit given for tweets, Facebook, and Tsu shares! Bonus credits if you follow this blog, too!
Three winners announced here Saturday, February 14, 2015.
—UPDATE!— THE WINNERS of books NATURALLY YOURS or KISSING HER COWBOY by Adele Downs are:
Lana Moon, Brandi Leigh, and Candy Chapman. I will contact you directly to claim your prize.
Many thanks to all who stopped by to visit John and I and to those who entered my contest. I hope you enjoyed John’s feature and will enjoy reading my books.
Ready for more?
John Antorino is a fitness model, romance novel cover model, and actor whose upcoming documentary film with Eric Roberts, There Is Many Like Us, will release in 2015. John and Eric play bad guys, but I can assure you that John is one of the nicest, most down to earth guys you’ll meet in real life. He has appeared in Sex and The City, Sex and The City 2, Lipstick Jungle, The Forensic Files, and The Republic, among others. New film projects are in the works for the foreseeable future.
When he’s not working on his career, John volunteers his time in hospitals in his home state of New Jersey and around the country, visiting children with cancer. He calls his volunteer work his “true passion.”
I asked John to describe his ideal Valentine’s Day date:
“My ideal romantic Valentine’s Day date wouldn’t be the typical out to dinner and roses sent to work. Although I’m sure I’ve done that in the past. But that’s too common for me and every couple typically does that to celebrate Valentine’s Day. I’d much rather take the time and effort to make a nice homemade dinner. Candles lit. Greet her at the door with a rose and a big kiss. After dinner some good homemade dessert. A good movie. Hugging and kissing and fall asleep in my arms all night.
“I have to say though, for me, and being the man I am, I am this way all the time. Year round. It’s not just for one day on Valentine’s Day. Hugs, kisses, love, affection, romance and beautiful words should be shared daily!”
I’ve interviewed John for articles published on other romance blogs, but met him for the first time in October 2014 at the New Jersey Romance Writers Put Your Heart in a Book conference, where he represented a publisher for whom he does cover modeling.
Lucky me, John greeted me with a kiss! Book Obsessed Chicks book club president and blogger Kimberly Radicy-Rocha caught the moment on camera. John is gorgeous and likable. No wonder I’m smiling!
John Antorino is the spokesperson for Muscle Wiz and has appeared in several fitness magazines.
Wow! ‘Nuff said about this smokin’ hot pic.
“I’m a selfless, passionate lover. I love kissing and taking care of my lady in every way. When she’s with me she knows what passion, romance, and love is. Happy Valentine’s Day, ladies!” ~ John Antorino
For more information about John Antorino, visit his social media pages.
Thank you for joining us! I wish you a week filled with romance.
(Please remember that all photos on this blog post are copyrighted and the property of John Antorino. They may not be copied, shared, or used for any personal or professional purpose without express permission.)
Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, PA was the perfect place to spend a day to celebrate. After turning in my latest manuscript HER CHRISTMAS COWBOY for November 2014 release, my husband and I took a drive to enjoy a relaxing day of beauty and sunshine. We strolled through miles of gardens, ate lunch in the conservatory, and took hundreds of photographs. Here are some of my favorites. I hope you enjoy them.
Photographs by author Adele Downs and may not be copied or otherwise used without permission.
Pennsylvania is known for its mountains, rivers, forests and rich Colonial history. I was born and raised here, and am constantly amazed by all there is to see and do. I’ve posted many pictures of places and events in my home state and neighboring Delaware on this blog, which, in addition to my published books, seem to be emerging as its themes.
The harsh Pennsylvania winter weather and significant snowstorms of 2013-2014 have sometimes been followed by 50 degree days. During the most recent warm up, my husband and I took advantage of the sunshine and decided to take our routine walk along the Brandywine River trails. To our surprise, the most beautiful paths we’ve ever found were only 1.5 miles from our house! It must be true that sometimes the best things in life can be found in our own backyard.
Here are some of the pictures I shot along the way. I hope you enjoy them.