Monday, May 10, 2010

Heaving Bosoms, Part Deux

Ok, so I know I recently blogged about why I love romance novels. (By recently, I mean within like the past year) What I haven't shared with you are some really interesting figures from the Romance Writers of America (RWA).

According to their website,, romance sales for 2009 are estimated at around $1.36 billion. That's a "b" on billion. The next closest genre, religious and inspirational, is estimated at around $800 million. With an "m." Good grief!! In 2008, the romance genre held a whopping 13.5% of the consumer market. An early 2009 study shows that an estimated 74.8 million people read a romance novel in 2008, with 29 million of them being regular readers. 29% of Americans over the age of 13 read a romance novel in 2008. Also, according to the website, "Romance readers are more likely than the general population to be currently married or living with a partner." Also, "Romance readers typically begin and finish a romance novel within 7 days." That's fairly impressive.

This information means a lot to me. It means that what I've always believed about myself and my fellow romance novel enthusiasts is true. We're not sad, pathetic, moronic females waiting around for our mythical knight in shining armor.We wouldn't turn our nose up at him, but we have lives, we live them, and there are a ridiculous number of us out there.

So, yes, there's some great sex scenes, and there's always a happy ending (in more ways than one). Doesn't everyone want a little more of that in their life?

Friday, April 30, 2010

The Prettiest Girl in the World

I'm a dog person. I'm such a dog person that I'm suspicious of those who are not. There was a short six-month span of my childhood when my family did not have a dog. Our first dog was Chessie, short for Chesapeake Gold (or Chesserdoodle Stinkomatic Skootertronz McGillicuddy, depending on who you ask). She was my parents first "child." She was a red Golden Retriever that my parents got when they lived in Mississippi. I think of her as "Saint Chessie." And when she finally died, I was about seven. I cried for hours. Then there was Buffy. Short for Buffalo Girl. We got her the day before or after my birthday (I can't quite remember). She was a stunningly beautiful purebred Golden. She looked just like a Golden should, except she was short. We called her our "mini golden." Then we got Louie. Short for King Louie. He was part lab, part chow, part... god only knows. He was the silliest looking dog in the world and he peed when he got excited. But he was more my dog than any we've ever had. He was my boy. A short time later, we had to give Buffy up for adoption to an organization called Golden Retriever Rescue of North Texas. They are an amazing group of people. Buffy was a good girl, but she didn't do well with kids. And there are three of us, and our cousins (little at the time) came over all the time. So we gave Buffy to a home where she'd be happier. And she was. And I cried for hours. So we had one dog for a while. And then my mom got itchy. And we got Sandy, not short for anything, but she had a lot of nicknames (Sanny, Sandy-girl, Baby-girl, Prettiest Girl in the World, and Countess Sandra Francesca). She came to us through GRRNT, and she and Louie were the best of friends. Then, over Spring Break when I was in high school, we were told that Louie had died suddenly and unexpectedly of septic shock when a cyst had burst in his lung. Once again, I cried for hours. Sandy grieved right along with us. She missed him terribly. And once again, mom got itchy. So we got Blitzen, another rescue Golden, and Mom's spoiled baby.

And Sandy got older. She was a good dog. She loved to be dried off after her bath. For some reason, she hated baths, but loved being towel-dried afterward. She would hop up and down when you poured kibble in her bowl because she was so excited. And she always knew when I needed her to cry on. And today, we had to put her to sleep. I will miss her forever, and so in honor of my sweetest baby girl, I'm posting "Rainbow Bridge."

Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of Heaven is a place called The Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill or old are restored to health and vigor; those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them who had to be left behind. They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent; his eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling to each other in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together........

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Thank God Even Crazy Dream Come True! -Carrie Underwood

This is a short blog post, because I have to go back to jumping up and down and dancing around the room.

Today I got word that I will receive a commission into the USAF as an Intelligence Officer. Well, I should be clear. I received word that I will receive a commission into the USAF as an Intelligence Officer when I finally graduate from Kings Point in June.

I legitimately have never had better news in my life. This is the culmination of my dreams. This sets me, finally, on the path I want for my life. Not that I would've been miserable in another life, but this is the woman I want to be. In the words of my favorite Disney Princess, Belle, "I want adventure in the great wide somewhere." This is my chance, I'm taking life into my own hands and going for a wild ride.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


For those who aren't aware, I love Scrubs, the TV show. One of my favorite Scrubs moments involved Dr. Kelso, the newly retired Chief of Medicine, and Denise, a medical intern at Sacred Heart. He is trying to intimidate her and she responds with "Watch the lip Grandpa, because you wouldn't be the first old man I ever beat up." Kelso turns to JD and says, "I like her, she's got girl balls." A funny moment (better if you see it), and a phrase that has stuck with me.

I watched a biography of Carrie Underwood tonight, (Love her, by the way. She's adorable and her music is amazing!) and during one of the commercial breaks was a spot for a later biography show on Dolly Parton. I didn't watch it, because I wanted to actually get to bed at a semi-decent hour (oops), but it reminded me of how much I really love that woman. She has girl balls.

Dolly Parton has to be the smartest, ballsiest woman in the world. She started singing country music in the 60's and made it big. She stood up to Elvis Presley's "people" when he wanted to do a cover of her "I Will Always Love You" and required half of the publishing rights to the song be part of the deal. She said no, and has made millions off that single decision. It's part of why she's been called "The Iron Butterfly."

She doesn't take anything from anybody. She has to be the bawdiest, most outrageous looking woman in showbusiness, but she's also one of the most successful. She's been married to the same man, who, according to all reports, is madly in love with her, for 44 years in May. She has had a top five country hit in each of the last five decades. She's had a number one hit in four consecutive decades.

In short, Dolly Parton is a badass woman who takes life on her own terms and wins. She's sweet, funny, and tough. I think she's awesome. So Dolly, keep being an awesome woman for the rest of us to look up to.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Not Just Heaving Bosoms...

Hi, my name is Alyssa, and I'm addicted to romance novels.

For those who aren't aware, I really am. I love them. I love to read in general, but romance novels are the best! Really. People seem to have a judgement button there. I can't tell you the number of people who seem to believe that I'm unintelligent because I read romance novels. People have also come to the conclusion that I'm easy because I read romance novels. So I would like to clear up a misconception or two.

Yes, romance novels have sex scenes. Some more explicit than others. And sometimes, they're the best part of the book.

No, they're not all about sex. The point of a romance novel is to tell the story of two people falling in love. Boy meets girl, boy and girl live through a series of crazy events (often involving the solving of some heinous crime), and in the end, boy and girl live happily ever after.

Yes, they always have a happy ending. Like I said before, boy and girl live happily ever after in all romance novels. (Also, everyone er... gets their own happy ending. If you know what I mean.) That's why I love them. In real life, happy endings don't always happen, so why not live in a world where they do? It's the same reason I love Disney movies. Although there's less fun sex scenes in those.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Falling in Love with Paris... All Over Again.

Watched a truly wonderful movie tonight with my family (minus Chris, who is in Mississippi). It's called Le fabuleux destin d'Amélie Poulain (The Fabulous Destiny of Amelie Poulain). The story is of a young woman in Paris who decides to help those around her with their lives. The characters are endearingly odd and she ends up falling in love with a quirky young man who collects discarded photo booth pictures.

While the story is incredibly sweet and funny and is accompanied by a great soundtrack, the best part for me was the glimpses of Paris. I am truly a hopeless romantic, and I think the world can agree that if there is one city in the world that epitomizes romance and beauty, it's Paris. There's one scene where Amelie is leading her beau up a set of stairs in a park of some sort (I'm sure my cousin, the biggest francophile I know, would know exactly where it is) and Sacre Coeur gleams in the background against a brilliant blue sky. It was amazing. My favorite scene, I should say, is the last; Amelie and her love are riding his bike through the streets of Paris.

So now I want to go back to Paris. Desperately. I've found a dream of dancing down the Champs de Mars towards the Eiffel Tower and then riding a bike with my love through the streets of Paris. I'm going to need a baguette too.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Heartbreak and Other Mind-Benders

So I got my heart broken Sunday night (the 28th). My (now ex) boyfriend called me and told me that we shouldn't date anymore. It turns out that the reason behind this is he fell out of love with me sometime between seeing me on the 20th and drawing the conclusion on the 24th (a Wednesday). This makes very little sense to me, but whatever.

Obviously (as I'm not an inanimate block of ice), this hurt me immeasurably. I thought we had something real and he was a man I could love for... let's just stick with a long time. I was, apparently, wrong. As people do not just "fall out of love" in the space of four days, this leaves me with the desperate wonder of what in our relationship was actually real and what was simply what I wanted to hear and/or believe. Did he ever really love me? When did he stop? And why? These questions, though asked of him multiple times, will forever go unanswered. This sucks. I hate unanswered questions.

I've been told that I'm taking it well. I don't know if that's entirely true, but I refuse to wear sackcloth and ashes because he's not the man I thought he was. (It leaves me questioning my own judgement a little, but not too badly, because I have awesome friends.) The lesson I have to give from heartbreak is this; Ladies, when you're broken up with, have some pride! Don't call him incessantly. Don't drive by his house. This makes you crazy ex-girlfriend. Nobody regrets breaking up with crazy ex-girlfriend. They regret losing the one who cries, hurts, then puts on her big girl panties and kicks life in the butt and says, "Is that all you've got?!" That's the woman who makes him regret his own stupidity. So this is me, putting on my big girl panties and dealing with it.