Hold onto your hats, this…is Don’t Tell The Bride: The Untied Kingdom edition! This is the show where the groom gets the whole wedding budget, and the bride gets no say in how it’s spent.
Tonight, the pressure’s on for ex army major Will Harker, as he attempts to organise the perfect day for his bride to be Eve. For this couple, it all started when he saved her from drowning in the Thames after a paragliding accident.
“I thought she was an alien. Just dropped out of the sky with one giant wing.”
“But you still swam in after me. I could’ve been from the planet Zog.”
“We’ll, I didn’t see no bugger else doing it.”
“Oh, cheers. There’s romance for you!”
Going out with a soldier was an alien idea to Eve, too. “He is about ninety percent scar tissue. And it’s catching. I’d never been shot at until I met him. You’re such a dangerous man, Harker!”
And will the wedding he plans be just as risky?
“Oh God. He’ll probably hold the reception in the NAAFI.”
Day one, and Harker is searching for a venue. “Can’t be in a church. Been married before. The local register office looks like a barracks I was once in that smelled of feet. Maybe not there.”
Eve has slightly higher aspirations for her dream venue. “A stately home, you know, high ceilings and antiques and sprung ballroom floors. Don’t reckon I’ll get that, though. His ex lived in a house like that. He wasn’t a fan.”
His choice of catering probably isn’t going to go over well, either. “How much? No. Food can’t cost that much. You must be bloody joking. I’ll get the pub to put some sandwiches on.”
As one fifth of the pop sensation Grrl Power, Eve got used to wearing some top designer labels. Her dream wedding dress has always been something, “Elegant. Simple. Nothing huge or frou-frou. I’ve been to some celebrity weddings where the bride looked like she was wearing a birdcage and a net curtain. That’s not for me!”
But while Eve is relaxed about her dress, the thought terrifies Harker. “There’s a wedding shop on the high street. Scares the life out of me. I’d rather get shot. I honestly would. But there’s no getting round it, is there? She can’t get married in her pyjamas. It’s an important thing, I don’t want her to think I don’t realise that. She wants a proper wedding dress. Something with, you know, frills. Lace. One of them cage type things to hold the skirt out. Yeah.”
It’s the end of week one, and Harker has got a register office that looks like an army barracks, a pub, and a dress that’s part birdcage. It must be time for the stag!
“The what? What do I want a stag for? We’re having chicken at the…oh, you mean the party. Yeah…pub, I think. That’s that sorted. What’s next?”
Er…he really is going to just go to the pub. Let’s move on, shall we? Next he needs to pick out bridesmaid dresses. “Some woman on the radio asked Eve if she was getting her bandmates back together as bridesmaids. I’d tell you what her reply was, but I’ve been told you can’t swear on telly this time of night.”
Meanwhile, Eve is about to get the first piece of news about her own wedding. “I can’t believe I have to be sent an invitation to my own wedding. That’s wrong in about…five different ways. And…oh. So is this invite. I’d say he did it in five minutes on the computer, but he doesn’t know how to use a computer.”
But he knows someone who does. “Got a mate to do ‘em with a, what d’you call it, laptop. Ridiculous, what stationery companies charge, just for a bit of paper and some fancy writing.” True enough, but there does seem to be one person he’s forgotten to invite. “What, her mother? Oh aye, that’d be perfect. Ever seen a mother of the bride punched by her own daughter?”
Now there’s one week to go, and Harker is a bit dubious about one part of his wedding prep. “She told me to get a haircut. I bloody hate getting haircuts. Look, if some bugger’s coming at my head with a blade, I’m basically going to shoot him. I don’t reckon hairdressers like that.”
It’s the day before the wedding, and Eve finally gets to see what Harker has picked out for her to wear. “Oh, you’re KIDDING me. I look like a loo roll holder!”
After weeks of preparation, the big day is finally here, and Harker is finally getting the hang of romance. “The thing is, all this girlie stuff, I completely hate it. But Eve doesn’t, and she’s the point of it all, isn’t she? It’s to make her happy. I’d do anything for her. To be honest, I’d wear the damn wedding dress if it made her happy. I, er, really hope it doesn’t come to that, though.”
Grab your fascinators - it’s Four Weddings time! To celebrate the release of The Wedding Diary by Margaret James, we’ve asked four lovely Choc Lit authors to imagine their characters’ weddings.
Which wedding would you most like to be a guest at? Don’t forget to leave your vote at the end of the post!
Gethin and Coralie from Move Over Darling by Christine Stovell
What a beautiful spring day and what a glorious setting! Blinking, as she emerged from the cool interior of the old stone building, Coralie paused to take stock. The little church was set on top of a hill, from where emerald fields tumbled down to a turquoise sea. A winding road led to the village of Penmorfa and eventually to the garden centre where the reception was being held. Having popped over there first thing, Coralie knew that Alys and Kitty had pulled out all the stops in the large marquee with its striped-canvas roof spread out jewel-like in the beautiful grounds.
‘You look absolutely ravishing in that dress, Mrs Lewis,’ said the handsome man beside her in his sexy Welsh lilt.
Coralie shivered, delighted that her gamble had paid off. The vintage silk organza wedding dress had arrived as exactly described; prom-style, with an extravagantly-full skirt, a high neck, deep V back and a cinched-in waist. She’d accessorised it with an orange duchesse silk bow in her piled-up copper hair and matching orange shoes.
She gazed up into Gethin’s face as the sunlight caught the intense, blue-black of his hair, the twinkle of his midnight eyes, and a glint of white teeth as he smiled. Her husband. Her husband! Her once-secret love was no secret anymore and she felt like shouting it from the highest hills, telling the daffodils and anyone else would listen. But, first …
‘I look equally ravishing out of it,’ she said, stretching up to whisper in his ear, just as the photographer snapped them.
When anyone asked afterwards what she was saying to her husband, Coralie just smiled. But the photograph always reminded her of the most perfect start to their married life.
Nico and Midori from The Gilded Fan by Christina Courtenay
The wedding of Midori Kumashiro and Nicholas Noordholt was something quite out of the ordinary.
‘I’ve never seen a more exotic bride!’ cousin Temperance exclaimed when she first saw Midori in her wedding finery. ‘You look like a Far Eastern princess.’
Midori’s gown was made out of the brightly coloured silk material which had once been her best kimono. After the hardships of the recent civil war, and with most of the congregation being Puritans, it wasn’t really suitable. But it was a compromise – better than marrying in the original garment, which would no doubt have scandalised everyone. Her hair hung loose down her back, dark and glossy, almost to her knees and she needed no other adornment – she was quite simply beautiful and radiated happiness.
The groom was exceedingly handsome too, in a midnight blue silk coat, waistcoat and breeches, with a white silk shirt and stockings. It was his expression that drew the onlookers’ attention, however, as he watched his bride come towards him on the arm of her cousin Daniel. He looked like a man who’d found the greatest treasure on earth.
Temperance, as maid of honour, wore a pale blue gown that complemented her lovely eyes. Both she and the bride carried small posies of white damask roses tied with ribbons. Everyone else was dressed in their Sunday best.
A feast was held in the Marston household after the ceremony, featuring pastries, tarts, marchpane, crystallised fruits, cakes and jellies, as well as some foreign dishes concocted by the
bride herself. Wine and ale flowed freely and everyone joined in the dancing afterwards. It was the most joyous of occasions and one which the guests wouldn’t forget in a hurry.
Nate and Rowan from No Such Thing as Immortality by Sarah Tranter
I stood alone before the altar in the family chapel and closed my eyes. The stale musty air became infused with the fragrance of white roses. My daydreaming of Rowan at Ridings was reaching new heights …
‘Chill,’ James murmured at my side. He patted his pocket containing the Gray family wedding band.
‘Me?’ I queried with a wry rise of my brow. James was the one fidgeting. Aunty Hetty’s presence was more than unsettling him. He sent a fruitful rant my way.
My coat was tugged. I turned and looked down. Rowan’s nephew. I smiled but shook my head. There was a time and place for dressing up as a dinosaur. He returned to running around pews with his brother and being reprimanded by his parents.
My eyes met Elizabeth’s. Oh sweetheart. ‘I’m so happy,’ she bawled into my head, swiping away her tears of blood before they could be seen by the humans in the congregation. Frederick, arms around her, grinned at me and rolled his eyes.
Madeleine, next to him, observed silently, ‘You are the something old, Nathaniel. Any idea as to …?’
My look shot to the open door. And there she was. Dear God! I was barely aware of her being on the arm of her Uncle Fergus. He was wearing a kilt, sword, but no shirt ― even on this day! But Rowan … She was in full-length ivory, her glorious hair piled loosely around her head, her mother’s pendant around her neck. And her smile! Our eyes had met and held and it was as if time stood still. That look within their stunning verdant depths was reflecting all that she felt, all that I felt …
I swallowed hard and inhaled deeply of the dank musty air. How I prayed time was not our something borrowed.
John and Sarah from A Stitch in Time by Amanda James
Sarah Yates, time traveller extraordinaire, looked at her reflection and felt her heart do a rumba against her ribs. Even if she said so herself, she looked beautiful…and yes, even a little radiant. The ivory silk gown clung in all the right places and rippled sumptuously to the floor. Sarah grinned, noticing that with her slightest movement, the silk caught the light and poured material across her curves like cream over a spoon.
A single string of pearls adorned her neck, the matching teardrop earrings adding lustre to her peaches and cream complexion. Hand-made lace decorating the neckline tumbled to a halt, revealing just a hint of cleavage rising and falling to the rumba rhythm.
Artistically twisted into Botticelli tendrils; her long golden hair, the side tresses secured behind her head in a simple pearl clasp, looked absolutely perfect. And today was going to be perfect. Allowed carte blanche for one special day by ‘the powers that be’, she and John had chosen a very special wedding venue and a very special time.
In a clearing of an English forest when the world was young and full of hope, accompanied by birdsong, Sarah walked a path of flower petals towards her fiancé. Divine in a dark grey suit and green shirt, his dark hair curling over the collar, John turned and shot her a smile rivalling the sunlight streaming through the leafy canopy.
At the end of the path he took her hand, his deep green eyes twinkled and his wide sensuous mouth broke into another heart-stopping smile. And Sarah knew that despite their very much ‘less than normal’ relationship, she was soon going to be the happiest woman in the world.
What do weddings mean to most of us?
That’s in addition to the ceremony, the public affirmation of love and devotion, the joining of two people and hopefully two families forever?
Well – as I was researching The Wedding Diary, I realised most weddings also mean: gorgeous dresses, gorgeous shoes, fantastic nail-art, amazing table decorations, astonishing hairstyles, lots of polyester (especially among the over-fifties), hugely unsuitable hats, hyper-critical grannies, shiny black BMWs and – cake.
You can’t have a wedding without a wedding cake, so here’s one to get the party started.
Where do your stories start? Most writers get asked this question, and there’s no easy answer. Stories often seem to come out of nowhere, but in the case of The Wedding Diary I owe a great debt of gratitude to my local writers’ group, Exeter Writers, who got the ball rolling in a discussion about writing and weddings and winning, which all came together in The Wedding Diary. It’s about a girl who wins a fabulous luxury wedding. But there are a few problems, not least of them a missing bridegroom.
Last Saturday, Exeter Writers had a little private party to celebrate the publication The Wedding Diary. I took in a batch of cupcakes, which amazingly all got eaten. Who would have thought it?
But I kept one back for Choc Lit.
So, it’s your 17th birthday - many happy returns of the day. But remember, it’s okay to eat cake but not too much - a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips and all that.
That school report which stung so much? You’re still reeling from it. What was it Mr. Knight said? - ‘Linda does not have an original thought in her head, but she seems to enjoy the class anyway.’ I know it’s set you back a bit, rocked your world - but Mr. Knight will be proved wrong. Oh, so very wrong. Teachers don’t know everything, even if the majority of them think they do.
I know, I know…..your mother took you out of school before A levels on the strength of that comment. ‘Obviously you’re not working hard enough at school. Time you left and went out and got a job.’ Hmmm, parents don’t always make the right decisions either and after your mother’s death you’ll find she’d made a few very wrong ones of her own.
But it won’t be all bad about leaving school because it’s the 1960s. Hippies, rock ‘n’roll, the Cold War, drugs, sex, skirts that are far too short (in the opinion of your mother who must be obeyed), and it will be okay to embrace some of that, if not all. Think of it as early research for your future career - long way in the future in your case.
You could always wind your Dad around your little finger but best not tell your Mum he gave you the money for the record player. A mercy then, that you had to wait this long to get one and you never wasted your money on Cliff Richard records. Or Adama Faith’s. The Beatles all the way for you, helped along by your love of black and white photography and that iconic photograph of them
A little bit of advice never goes amiss even though teenagers don’t like hearing it. But hear this…..if you want a boyfriend to give you a hug, say so. Don’t say ‘I’m cold,’ and give a theatrical little shiver, because men are men and don’t read emotional signals. All that will happen is that he’ll buy you a jumper in a colour that doesn’t suit you, and a style you hate - and for the duration of your relationship, or until death…whichever.
Video and DVD recordings are a long way in the future….as are computers. But what lovely memories you will store up of sitting in the back row of the cinema watching West Side Story.Watching? Well, you’ll have to go three times to make sure you see it all in between the kissing, and the hand up the jumper fumbling, won’t you?
So, have a lovely day……it might be dandelion and burdock pop to toast the happy event but there will be champagne….in the future there will be champagne ….lots and lots of it to toast each of your publications. Cheers
I’m sure I’m not the only novelist who dreams about her books being made into movies. It’s always good to share, and it’s been great to hear the audio versions of my Choc Lit novels - to listen to someone else’s interpretation of what I wrote. Sometimes I don’t remember writing that bit at all!
Of course, I dream about seeing movie versions of my stories. As I’m writing a novel, I’m visualising the characters right from the start, and while I was writing The Wedding Diary I had several people on my cast list, hoping that one day their people might want to talk to my people!
As a romantic novelist, I think a lot about heroes. Yes, it’s a hard life. So, for my hero Adam - maybe Richard Armitage as he appeared in North and South a few years ago, as a hands-on working man, even if he was the boss? Or what about Gerard Butler? He quite chunky and since Adam is a builder he’ll need to look strong and capable. Gerard’s eyes are blue while Adam’s are brown, but hey, that’s why God gave us coloured contacts. We know he can do unrequited love and yearning passion - he did both brilliantly in The Phantom of the Opera. Richard or Gerard - let’s see who is free…
Fancy yourself up on a roof, Gerard?
As for the heroine - I was thinking Jennifer Aniston or Sarah-Jessica Parker. Cat, my heroine, is a thirty-something green-eyed dark blonde, so these two ladies fit the bill perfectly. British accent - could they do a British accent? I’m sure they could, no problem.
But what about the fairy godmother, who could play the terrifying Fanny Gregory? Meryl Streep, perhaps? Or Helen Mirren? My ideal would be Ruby Wax, she of the acid wit and motor-mouth. Ruby, don’t forget to keep your cell phone charged!
The perfect fairy godmother?
Actually it’s the other way round, I’m the one who’s delivering. It gives me great pleasure to reveal the cover for my next novel, The Highwayman’s Daughter, which will be published in January 2014.
In contrast to my contemporary romantic suspense novels, the setting for this book is Hounslow Heath in the 18th century, during the golden age of “gentlemen of the road”, and it’s a swash-buckling romp, light-hearted in parts but with darker elements too, as well as a core mystery.
I really love this cover, with its hint of intrigue and the central character’s slightly androgynous clothing and untamed hair, which tells us that she’s free-spirited and possibly a bit of a tomboy. I also love the green marbled background symbolising a forested hide-out (in 1768 Hounslow Heath was still densely forested in places), and the font has undertones of Pirates of the Caribbean.
Another reason I’m very excited is that this is actually my first historical novel. I always saw myself as a writer of contemporary fiction, so when this story presented itself to me, almost completely written in my head, it was rather a shock to the system. Should I ignore it and concentrate on my contemporary work, or should I go where the story was taking me and see what happened?
I trusted my instinct and went with the story. When I’d finished it, not only was I thrilled that I’d written a novel in a historical period which has always captured my imagination – the Georgian period – I also discovered that I’d succeeded in creating my own story universe (and by that I don’t mean an alternate universe…) as well as the basis for a trilogy.
So I’m very glad I didn’t ignore the call to “stand and deliver”!
When I first saw the wonderful cover which the brilliant Berni Stevens had designed for The Wedding Diary, I cried. It was and remains just so perfect. So, on pre-publication day (The Wedding Diary is officially published tomorrow and should be in a WHS Travel Shop near you), I was very happy to have a chance to chat to Berni about her work - which you can see below.
MJ: I love the cover you did for The Wedding Diary, Berni! Please could we talk a little about your inspiration?
BS: I’m so pleased you love it Margaret. I wanted the cover to look magical and romantic. Anything with ‘wedding’ in the title must surely be a romance and the cover needed to convey that.
MJ: The butterflies work really well. What made you think of using butterflies?
BS: I think it was the magical element again, as in wings and fairies! Plus the thought of a fairy godmother.
Butterflies are fairly optimistic creatures. They don’t live very long, but they are beautiful and ethereal. The sight of a butterfly always lifts my spirits because I immediately think of sunshine and warmer weather! (And of course the wedding season.)
MJ: I feel the colour of a cover is always very important, often suggesting the mood of a story. The sky blue of TWD seems to signify hope to me. Did you think that, too?
BS: Colour is very important for a cover, not just to convey the elements of the story but to attract the attention of the browsing reader. I just wanted the cover to be very feminine and happy.
MJ: When you design any cover, do you always read the book/novel itself, or do you work from a brief given to you by the author/publisher?
BS: For Choc Lit, I always read the book if there’s time. Sometimes I have to skim read if it’s urgent, but I will always read something. It’s important to get a feel for the story and the characters.
MJ: How did you become a cover designer?
BS: I trained in graphic design for three years, after doing a general foundation year and I’ve always loved books. After a very brief stay in advertising (which I hated with a passion), I started looking around and luckily got a junior design job with a Central London publisher.
MJ: What’s a typical working day like for you?
BS: Being freelance means there’s no such thing as a typical day. I’ve usually got several projects on at once, the majority of my work being for Choc Lit of course. This means several covers, which are all at several stages, some at visual stage – unapproved for the moment – and some approved and waiting to go to artwork stage.
MJ: What do you enjoy most about designing the covers for Choc Lit?
BS: Choc Lit publish such an amazing array of books – across all genres – it really stretches me as a designer.
Also Choc Lit’s way of working is so refreshing. There’s no cover briefing where an editor says what they want on the cover, and there’s no cover approval meeting where everyone rips to shreds everything the designers have been working on for weeks. I’m given a pretty free rein to come up with ideas initially, which is wonderful. Of course if they aren’t liked, it’s back to the ‘drawing board’ but to be able to let my imagination run riot is something I hadn’t experienced for a long time in-house. Every new cover is an exciting experience for me.
Then of course there’s the fact that Choc Lit are lovely to work with!
Where does it all happen, then?
I persuaded Berni to send me a photograph of her office. I’m impressed - it’s way tidier than mine!
The engine room, aka Berni's office, where the clever stuff begins!
Thank you for chatting to me, Berni - it was fun!
I’ve been thinking about heroes - well, not all the time obviously - but trying to fathom what it is in romantic fiction that draws a reader to a male character. One only has to think of Mr D’Arcy in Pride and Prejudice, with his haughtiness, condescension and controlled sexuality for most of us to give a sigh. And how we feel about Colin Firth in the role and coming out of the lake in his wet shirt I’ll leave to your imagination. And it’s true that so many romantic novels have as their hero a character who at first seems cold and sarcastic. If D’Arcy had been open minded, friendly and less conscious of his own superiority, would he have been such an interesting character? I doubt it.
So why do women feel a frisson and want to turn the pages to discover more about these fascinating men. And why do we find them so fascinating? An element of danger perhaps and we all know that women are attracted by power and wealth. I regard reading as a form of escapism, and many of us put down a novel feeling refreshed having lived other lives between the cover. There would be little of that in a novel where the ‘love interest’, resembled the boring guy next door.
Which brings me to reading habits. Since I’ve begun writing, I find it difficult to fit in daytime reading, usually leaving it until I go to bed. And yet from childhood I’ve been a bookworm. Holidays are now an oasis of dedication to books, reassured that as I’m out in the open air and relaxing that’s okay then - no guilt that I should be furthering the current novel. But one skill I have never mastered is to read more than one book at the same time. A single-minded person, that’s me. It would be interesting to hear whether others’ reading habits have changed since they became writers.
I consider myself to be a very lucky girl at the mo. I’m spending rather a lot of time with Nate. Anyone who has read No Such Thing as Immortality will know exactly who I mean. Nathaniel Gray, the former Earl of Ridings, but now a two-hundred year old vampire.
I’m working on book 2 of the No Such Thing series. As this book continues Nate’s story, and is written from his perspective, the two of us are finding ourselves engaged in an awful lot of one-to-one time. It’s at times like these I ask myself why I ever became a writer. It’s such a very very hard life
He’s intense, too. Seriously intense. And has been leading me astray no end. All he has to do is look at me with those eyes of his and raise a brow. Plot line? There was one once upon a time, but now I have not a clue where he’s leading me. I know where I want him to end up, but he’s presently got other ideas. But it’s his prerogative. It’s his story after all. And I am so enjoying the ride.
I’ve yet to decide on a title for this second book. No such thing as […..]? There are currently four possible blank-fillers, although the count is growing daily rather than shrinking. We will see.
So there you go. What I am presently working on. If you can of course, call it work. And to all those who have contacted me to find out when book two is out ― soon I hope
Edits also loom for Romancing the Soul, due out in January 2014. This one is rather different - not a vampire or faerie in sight. Mainstream but with perhaps a twist as two soul mates deal with the consequences of meeting during a past life regresssion. I adore the cover for this one, too - thank you so much Berni Stevens and Choc Lit!
And a couple of writing tips for those that way inclined. I’m not at all sure I’m qualified to give them. I kind of make things up as I go along. And no doubt I will not be asked to provide them again. But on the basis of recent weeks, I would suggest:
Not letting your characters go into a kitchen when you are on a diet (see - I so won’t be asked again). You might think you have your cravings under control, but your characters will likely prove otherwise. You will end up with a scene incorporating all of your favourite comfort foods. In my case, quite an accomplishment with so many of the cast being vampires, not at all interested in hot toasted bagels with marmite or macaroni cheese. You may be able to make use of some of it. You may not. But it’s safe to say it can rather take you off course.
The second ― I’m actually chuffed to bits with. In my case, it has allowed me dedicated early morning romps with Nate. The advice? If you seem to be struggling to get words down on the page, try making a dramatic change to your writing routine. I’m not a morning person at all. No Such Thing as Immortality was written very late at night and right through it on occasions. But with my boys’ bedtime getting later and later and with that, the point at which I can recommence writing (I am knackered at 9.30pm) I’ve had to take desperate measures. I’ve been setting my alarm clock to go off at 5am. And for me, sitting in front of my laptop in a freezing cold kitchen at 5.10am, kitted out in extreme weather gear, has proved an amazing incentive to write. I am only out of my warm cosy bed to write. If I don’t write, I’ve wasted that huge effort that was getting up. Previously, that pre-feeding the boys 5―7am slot was spent asleep so I now only associate that time with writing. I find I don’t get distracted with washing and cleaning because I simply wouldn’t climb out of my bed at that time in the morning to do that stuff. It may not work for everyone. In fact, it may only work for me (generally work ― kids!) ― but it’s a great sensation to know you’ve words under your belt before the day starts proper. In my case, that sensation, obviously, has absolutely nothing to do with having a bit of extra time with Nate
Hello from Sunny California where I’ve just stopped by a Starbucks coffee outlet for their free wi Fi so I could post my blog called It’s All About Romance - an appropriate title since this 3 week motorcycle/camping trip around California is all about just that.
It all started with the idea that instead of attending my thirteenth consecutive Romance Writers of Australia conference (held this year in Perth) I would go to the Romantic Times Convention in Kansas City. I’d just learned that six of the Choc-Lit crew would be there, including my editor, Rachel, who is currently editing my Septmber release, The Reluctant Bride. Exciting or wot!?
The real clincher was when my husband suggested we precede the week-long convention with a two-week holiday in the States. He’s a long-haul pilot mostly doing mostly the Melbourne to Los Angeles route and he keeps a beautiful yellow BMW 1150 GS motorcycle at the hotel where the crew stays when they’re in LA.
What better way to spend our 20th year of marriage than doing a motorcycle/camping trip through California?
For the past couple of months Eivind has been collecting the gear we need: a top of the range German-made Schuberth motorcycle helmet for me which he reckons is the safest and most comfortable as they’re made especially for women; full protective leathers. Then there’s our tent, sleeping bags, mattresses, chairs, cooking equipment. As you’ll see from the picture we’re one self sufficient unit. Personal clothing is limited but the fun factor more than makes up for it.
The past two days we’ve been soaking up the dramatic scenery at Yosemite National Park and ending the day toasting marshmallows over our camp fire.
If you ask me now and for the next two weeks what romance really means for me - I’m living it!