My Favorite Romantic Gestures
I originally wrote this blog post for a guest spot I did on Melissa's Mochas, Mysteries & Meows, a fun cozy mystery blog. In honor of Valentine's Day, I thought I would bring it out again, because it's all about love!
Let’s face it, ladies, we LOVE love. And what is love without a little romance? In my bestselling debut novel, IT’S JUST A LITTLE CRUSH, the hot leading man, Blake, has quite a few romantic tricks up his sleeve—although he doesn’t really need them to woo Lizzie, who’s been crushing on him since the moment she saw him.
My list is a combination of gestures that my fictional leading man and my real-life leading man have both used to add a little romance to their respective relationships.
Cook for her
Last year on Valentine’s Day, it just so happened that I was scheduled to be in charge of my community’s soup kitchen. I love volunteering there, and there’s nothing more important to me than making sure that people are fed and cared for. I was a little bummed that it fell on Valentine’s Day, but what better way to show love, right? Well, when I got home, hot and tired from cooking and serving over steaming pots and starving because I didn’t have time to eat, my husband had made an entire Chinese dinner (at that time, he didn’t cook hardly at all, so this was monumental), complete with my favorite wine (which he doesn’t even like), roses, AND earrings! And just this morning, I was treated to a huge surprise breakfast buffet, complete with an omelet, hash browns, and gravy!
In my book, Blake, also not known for cooking much, takes it upon himself to make Lizzie a lovely breakfast of waffles, bacon, and coffee in her kitchen while she’s still sleeping. Lizzie had had a difficult weekend, getting her car blown up, being questioned by the police, and getting her favorite dress ruined by a catty frenemy, so Blake decides to surprise her and pamper her a bit.
Give gifts: flowers and jewelry, but not chocolates—and for heaven’s sake, NEVER a scale.
Flowers as a gift for various holidays are great, but flowers for no reason—now that’s romantic! I’ll have to say that my husband did the “flowers for no reason” thing a lot more when we were dating, but it still happens every once in a while, and when it does, I get all swoony. Jewelry is always great. Just make sure it’s real and not heart-shaped.
There are gifts that can backfire, gentlemen, and chocolates are one of them. If we ladies are on a diet (which, face it, most of us at least pretend we’re on a diet constantly), then chocolates are not always well-received. Along the same line, never, EVER buy a woman a scale. Just don’t. Even if it’s state-of-the-art, beams your weight wirelessly to your computer, etc. Don’t. Do. It. My husband got me one for Christmas last year. Granted, it was kind of a symbol of a commitment for us both to get healthier, and we did actually lose 100 pounds between us. But please, wouldn’t it have been better to just buy it, and not wrap it up and put it under the tree? Nothing says “You’re fat” like the gift of a scale.
Nothing says “I love you” more than showing it in front of the whole world. Guys, women like to be touched—and by “touched” I don’t mean “groped”. There’s a difference. Public groping is uncool. Don’t do it. It makes us feel cheap. (I only remember it happening one time to me, and the idiot got slapped. And dumped.) However, holding our hands, putting an arm around us, brushing our hair back from our face (gently, especially if we’ve spent an hour styling it), and maybe a quick peck on the cheek or lips is all good, and very welcome.
Blake loves to be near Lizzie. They work together, so there’s definitely no PDA in the office, but he takes every opportunity elsewhere to hold her hand, play with her hair, hug her, and kiss her. The only instance of Blake’s PDA gone wrong is when he and Lizzie broke into a suspect’s office, and as they were trying to avoid the police, he pulled her to the ground and kissed her. He tried to convince her that their “cover” was that they were engaging in a little outdoor hanky-panky rather than fleeing the scene of a crime. Yeah, Lizzie didn’t buy it, either.
Save her life
Although I can’t say that my husband has ever had to do this for me, I’m confident that if faced with the situation, he would be very heroic.
Ever the hero, Blake saves Lizzie in the end. I don’t think I’m giving away too much of the plot here, because the book is a mystery, and they have to deal with a killer, so it stands to reason that there would be a big finish. And, considering there is a sequel, Lizzie obviously is indeed saved. Anyway, this might not be a gesture that can be done on a regular basis, but when it is, it is the ultimate romantic gesture.