Stephanie Hurt – Romance Author

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Taking time for ourselves…

Some might say, what does it mean to take time for myself. It’s funny when my accounting clients come into the office and see my books on the table beside my desk. At first they glance at them and then they do a double take. The look that comes over their face is priceless. What’s unsettling is they look at me seriously and say when do you have time for this? Will this affect what you do for me?

I actually laugh when they say that. I look at them and say ‘I don’t live in this office 24/7. I do have a family, a home and need time for myself. I shake my head and think don’t you take time for yourself. Why is it that people expect you to live for them? Just because I take care of your accounting does not mean that I live to do only that.

I realized last year during tax season that I was spending too much time catering to everyone but myself. I would spend 12 to 15 hours in my office working. What hit home was when one night I was pulling a late night and my hubby and son came to the office to visit me. That’s what they called it. I felt horrible. Then my doctor (A good friend) told me I needed to start taking more time for myself. He reminded me I was middle aged. I do not consider 44 middle aged, but evidently he does.

So I started right then and there staying in the office less, taking on less responsibilities and living life. God gave me this wonderful life and He didn’t promise me tomorrow. So why was I spending my life behind a desk. The next night I was in the house and cooking dinner when my family got home from work and school. My husband walked back out the door and came back in. He said he thought he went to the wrong house. My son was excited to have me home for a change. It took five years off my life.

Then I started publishing my books. That made me start looking at my future. I know I can’t  do taxes and accounting forever. I love my job don’t get me wrong, but tax preparation can be down right frustrating with the changing laws and constant issue drama. So I decided to start making little changes like turning over more stuff to my assistant. Some work days we spend the whole day just searching ideas for new book covers or research of the next book. That’s something I would never have done this time last year. It has helped my health, my home life, my work life, and especially my sanity. Well, maybe not my sanity, I’m not a sane person, but who is if you really get down to it 🙂

So start today, this minute thinking of yourself. Give yourself some time. Start spending some time each week just for yourself. Take a bubble bath, read a good book, take a leisurely walk, play a game with your family, watch a sappy movie or just sit and watch the clouds go by. But live like today is it. Live like you have no tomorrow. Love more intensely, take romance to another level and hug your child more than just when they are leaving for school. (Hint, if you have a teenager it might be met with a ‘really mom’ but do it anyway.)

As always, good writing and May God Bless You!!!


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Oatmeal, coffee and romance…

As I eat my apple cinnamon oatmeal and  savor my second cup of coffee I muse over my newest manuscript. Writers block, well not really writers block, more like writers laziness has took over. I think it stems from way too much on my plate.

I did something yesterday that I really hate to do. I went shopping. It’s Christmas time and it was inevitable that I would have to hit the mall. I ordered as much as I could online, but I had to break down and jump into the frying pan of shopping. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate to shop, don’t know why, but I do. Of course my mom went with me as she loves to shop. We were stuck in traffic at a dead stop for over thirty minutes. That made the experience even happier. By the time we got to the outlet mall I was just a little stressed.

But while my mom stood in line in the store, I took my packages out to the sidewalk to sit and people watch. As a writer I get a lot of good ideas by people watching. I watched this elderly couple get out of their car and he helped with her coat. You could see the immense love shining in his eyes. They were so adorable as they walked to the sidewalk and started walking hand in hand. They would look at one another and smile, with eyes twinkling. It made things seem a little better.

It got me to thinking about romance and how you keep it alive through the years. You can love someone with all your heart, but not have romance. It happens everyday. But as I watched this elderly couple, i was in awe of the romance that just seeped out of them. It was obvious to anyone that just watched them that romance just dominated them. It inspired me to get busy writing. I was humbled too by the thought that even at their age they could keep the spark alive.

So as always, keep the romance alive. If you don’t have romance in your life, it’s not too late. Cook your sweetie a romantic dinner, light some candles, and sit in the candlelight talking. Don’t talk about the finances or the problems of the day. Just talk about each other. Make it special. You won’t regret it. Maybe send him a little note on his phone, but do make sure that he is the only one looking at the text. (Been there and it was so awkward explaining it to my son who read the text for his dad that was driving. Needless to say, he now waits til he gets where he’s going to read his texts. 🙂 )

As always, good writing and heightened romance. May God Bless you!oatmeal4