Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2022- ‘Lucky Dip – A Valentine Gift by Gwen Plano

Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 1000 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine.

The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history, family and the most recent series was #PotLuck where I shared a random selection of different topics. This series is along the same lines… but is a ‘Lucky Dip’. I have posts scheduled for another few weeks but that will bring this current series to an end. Another series will begin in the new year.

In this series I will be sharing posts from the half of 2022

Today author and poet Gwen Plano shares a tribute to her grandfather that she posted in February in celebreation of Valentine’s Day.

A Valentine Gift  

Amidst the demands of the times, we pause and celebrate those we love. How wonderful is that! Stores are filled with bouquets of flowers, boxes of chocolate, and rows of cards. Today LOVE is getting needed attention.

With Valentine greetings spread across the blogosphere, there’s one special Valentine I’d like to share with you today – my grandfather Valentine F Butters.

Born February 14th, Val (as he was called), quickly became beloved by all who knew him.

For most of his life, he didn’t have much, and he didn’t care. He loved life – the challenges, the joys, and all the moments in-between.

What I remember most about my grandfather is his laugh. No matter the circumstance, peeling potatoes or reading me a book, he’d offer a heartfelt chuckle.

​My mom was a twin, and when she arrived, the whole community responded. They were the first twins in the farming community and quickly lost their names to be called “The Twins”.

​For Val, they were a miracle. He spent long hours in the fields caring for this miracle, and each year another arrived.

I never heard my grandfather say anything unkind or thoughtless. If he spotted one of his grandkids in tears, he’d pick them up and listen to their story, then he’d offer hugs and say, “It’s not so bad, now is it?” I heard this expression more than once, and it always made everything better.

Much like the Twins, my grandfather saw his grandchildren as miracles. But Papo (as we called him) was our miracle.

Thinking back over the years, there are many Valentines I cherish, but my grandfather tops the list. In his memory, I offer a simple Tanka poem and wish you a very happy Valentine’s Day.

©Gwen Plano 2022

My thanks to Gwen for allowing me to share the posts from her archives and I know she would love to hear from you.. hugsx

About Gwen M. Plano

Growing up in Southern California, Gwen M. Plano loved learning, and she loved imagining stories, some grandly epic, all personal and heartfelt. She taught and served in universities across the United States and in Japan, then retired and focused again on her stories.

Her first book, Letting To Into Perfect Love, is an award-winning memoir recounting some of her struggles in life while providing insight into the healing process.

Gwen shifted to fiction after this first book and joined forces with acclaimed author John W. Howell in writing a thriller, The Contract: between heaven and earth. Its sequel, The Choice: the unexpected heroes, soon followed – this time a solo effort. The Culmination, a new beginning, is the third book of the series.

Gwen lives in the Midwest with her husband, traveling and writing, sharing those stories only she can imagine.

Books by Gwen M. Plano

One of the reviews for Culmination

Mae Clair 5.0 out of 5 stars A Political Thriller with Strong Characters  Reviewed in the United States on January 16, 2021

Book three in a series, The Culmination reads easily as a standalone novel. A political thriller, that addresses denuclearization, tensions in the Middle East, and the fate of refugees, much of the story echoes current headlines. The plot is complex involving multiple heads of state, along with the strategical give and take of political maneuvering on a global level. The author clearly put an extensive amount of research into this book, and it shows. Adrenalin-fueled scenes alter with more cerebral moments, and even a few romantic interludes.

I especially loved the evolution of the relationship between the two central characters, Margaret Adler, VP of the United States and Ivan Smirnov, acting President of Russia. During the course of the novel those titles change, and we learn more about each, including richly developed backgrounds. I was thoroughly invested in the difficulties Margaret and Ivan faced, both on personal and political levels. Their scenes together were among my favorites of the book. There’s also a young refugee child who factors into the story and who stole my heart.

A unique combination of character-driven and plot-driven fiction, I recommend this compelling tale to readers who enjoy strong character development and complexly-plotted intrigue. 

Read the reviews and buy the books: : Amazon UKand : Amazon USAs Gwendolyn M. Plano: Amazon US follow Gwen : Goodreads –website:Gwen PlanoTwitter: @gmplano


90 thoughts on “Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2022- ‘Lucky Dip – A Valentine Gift by Gwen Plano

  1. Everyone should have a grandfather like this—someone who picks us up when we’re down and helps us understand that family is far more important than material possessions.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Pingback: Smorgasbord Weekly Round Up – 26th September – October 2nd 2022 – Hits 2004, Bocelli, Culinary ‘H’ foods, Basking Sharks, Podcast, Reviews, Health and Humour | Smorgasbord Blog Magazine

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