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adventWe’re entering the third week of Advent. This week is called Gaudete Sunday. “Gaudete” (pronounced gow / dey / tay) is the Latin word for “rejoice” and this is the week priests wear rose-colored vestments and we light the rose-colored candle, because we are rejoicing reaching the half-way point through this anticipatory season.

This third week, the pink or rose candle is the Shepherd’s Candle, and it represents Joy.

As a matter of faith, of course I approach Christmas with a sense of joy.

As a romance writer, this season is no different.

Think of the joy a couple shares on that first exhilarating date. Or when they first say “I love you.” Or when they get engaged. Married. When they first move in together. When they first learn they’re expecting. That first doctor’s visit when they hear that rapid heartbeat, maybe even see a blurry image on a screen. When they hear that first cry, hold that sweet bundle in their arms. Take that precious baby home for the first time.

There is joy all around. Every first, every milestone. Every moment people choose to savor instead of squandering.

What joyous occasion are you looking forward to this season? What milestone are you celebrating? What everyday activity are you experiencing with a new sense of wonder instead of that same old sense of acceptance or dread? Why don’t you share your story here?