Monday, March 23, 2009

An "I'm So Beautiful-I Love Myself" Moment

Okay, ladies, do you ever have those moments when you look in the mirror and say, "Dang, I'm beautiful?" Are you ever overcome with the feeling that you absolutely love yourself, curves, gray hair and all?

Women are so different from men because men have those moments frequently. My husband often looks at his reflection, runs a hand over his balding head, strikes that GQ pose, and says, "I'm pretty good looking. I smile and tell him I agree. And every time he does that it makes him even more handsome. Do you know why? Because he feels it inside and it oozes out of him.

I'm starting to have those moments myself more and more. And I'm not talking vanity, but just feeling that I love everything about me. As a matter of fact, I'm feeling that way right now. I looked in the mirror this morning and thought, "Whoa! You are awesome!"

So I challenge all you ladies out there to allow yourselves those moments and hang onto them. Rejoice in the beauty God gave you and thank Him for it:o)

Suggested Reading

Book: A World Of His Own: In The Land Of The Creoles
Author: Arlette Gaffrey

The Book
This is an historical fiction set in New Orleans in 1809. The story is about a young man who arrives in New Orleans to start a new life. The story traces his struggle to build A WORLD OF HIS OWN where he feels he truly belongs. It also follows his disastrous first marriage to a spoiled, selfish, head-strong woman who dies and leaves him with her illegitimate son and shattered dreams.

This is a must read for anyone who loves historical romance, and even if you don't. I read it in a day because I couldn't put it down. The characters are intense, the details very vivid, and the history of the Creoles is fascinating. Arlette really did her research, and being descended from the Creoles helps, I'm sure:o) She has a great writing style and the story pulls you in and doesn't let go. By the time I finished the book, I felt like I had just watched an epic love story.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Arlette and she graciously took the time to answer some questions.


Arlette, thanks so much for visiting with us today. Tell us a little about yourself.

I am a French and Spanish Creole born in New Orleans. My family goes back many generations in the Cresent City. I was born in a big mansion that had been in our family for about one years. The house has since been turned into a Bed and Breakfast Inn. Anyone interested in seeing what the house looks like can find it at www.elysianfieldsinn.com. I'm going home in May this year, and plan to stay in my old house for a few days. When I was ready for school we moved up to the Garden Dristict so I could attend Sacre Coeur (Sacred Heart) Academy, a private Catholic girl's school. When I was 18 years old I went to a fashion show, the first I'd ever been to, and before the day was over I was hired by the agency to be a professional high fashion model. I modeled from age 18 to 55 years of age. I married a career Naval Officer who was also a Navy pilot. I loved the life. We got transferred a lot so I was able to model where ever and when ever I felt like it. I have three children, one daughter and two sons, all are married. I have six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. The two oldest, one boy and one girl are married. The other four aren't, but then three of them are quite young. 12, 10 and 8 and so far they haven't been interested in getting married just yet, thank goodness.

When did you begin writing and what made you start?

All my life I flirted with the idea of someday maybe writing a book, but moving around like we did, and raising three children in strange places never gave me time. But after my children were all grown and moved out of the nest and I was all alone, it seemed like a good idea to at least give it a try. I was in my late 50's when the story began to form in my brain. For the first year I wrote the book in my head, and started to do a lot of research. Slowly I started to put the story down on paper. I didn't know how successful I'd be since I'd never had any type of writing class. I just wrote from my heart and let the story write itself. And much to my amazment it was well recieved. I love all the wonderful reviews I've received on Amazon.com.

I absolutely loved you book A World Of His Own, In the Land of the Creoles. The setting and details are amazing and the characters definitely stay in the mind. Tell us a little about the story and how your own background ties into it.

Since there was no Television in my day, story telling was one way we entertained ourselves. And my family had a lot of wonderful stories to tell about New Orleans and our Creole hertiage. My uncle owned a plantation and I would spend many summers on the plantation with my little cousins, so I knew what plantation life was like. I also had to do a lot of research to understand how sugar cane is grown and also about how steamboats were built at that time in history. And of course I had to do research on Jean Lafitte, Andrew Jackson and Henry Shreve, plus remember what I had already learned about The Battle of New Orleans. My story is about a young man who is torn from his family during the French Revolution. He is only a child, and he is sent to England to live with distant relatives. When he grows up he leaves England to return to France where all that he loved is gone, so he sets out for the new world to start a new life in New Orleans. The story follows him as he struggles to build a world of his own. He becomes a very successful plantation owner and also finds love but even that is a struggle.

Do you have any other published books?

Not yet, A World Of His Own - In The Land Of The Creoles was my first written book and the first one I've published. However I now am about ready to publish my second book which is also about New Orleans. It is set in 1846, and titled "Beyond The Columns". I recently comissioned an excellent artist to draw the cover for the book. And right now I am having it edited. When I write I get so caught up in the story that I don't always pay attention to my punctuation, so I am having someone proof read it for me. I also have two other books finished and ready for publication in the future. Both of these books take place in England and are called Regency Romances because they are set in 1814. One is titled "A Marriage of Convience" and the other is "Courting Jennifer". These books also required much research, but I learn so much when I do the research that it doesn't seem like work.

Are you working on any other projects?

At the moment I am writing another book about New Orleans, my fifth book, third about my home town. This one is set in 1734, and titled "The Casket Girl". Like my first two book about New Orleans it requires a great deal of research. But I love learning even more about that enchanting city. There is an old saying "You can take a native out of New Orleans, but you can never get New Orleans out of a native". and that's how it is with me. I have such wonderful memories of how New Orleans was when I was growing up.

Arlette, you're a pretty amazing lady. Thanks for giving us the opportunity to get to know you better:o)

Thank you. I really appreciate the interest you have shown in my book and also in me. But the pleasure is all mind I promise you.

Get your copy of A World Of His Own from Amazon.com
I promise you'll love it!

3 comments:

CTW said...

Well Jewel, you are beautiful! More often now too, I look in the mirror and say, I'm not sooo bad looking. Thanks for the reminder. Love the husband/GQ pose.

kersten campbell said...

Jewel,
I think your beautiful too! And I loved your interview with this author. Thanks for posting those beautiful thoughts.

JoAnn Arnold said...

I agree, Jewel. Reminding yourself that you are beautiful helps the day flow better.

I thoroughly enjoyed your author interview. I appreciate the fact that she, too, has punctuation problems. I don't do comas.