Chivalrous Acts


I’m a modern girl. I’m independent and I’m single. I have built a career from the ground up, read everyone from C.S. Lewis to Suzanne Collins, can navigate social media with relative ease, and watch New Girl every week like it’s my job.

And? I know I can take care of myself. But hey, call me old-fashioned, too. It’s fine. I can appreciate aspects of feminism, but I prefer gender roles. I like when a guy volunteers to kill a massive spider without complaint, or lift a heavy box in my stead.

I find chivalry to be a gorgeous thing. 

Most women I know are a little like that. We love our modern independence in life and in love, but deep down, we want guys to treat us like ladies. As most women will attest, it’s become increasingly rare. Gentlemanly behavior sets our hearts aflutter. We want to see it, and many of us are waiting on it.

Some men make us question why chivalrous acts have died out. However, other men prove that sweetness still exists. I want a guy to court me a bit. In fact, I’m sort of holding out for that. Someone to sweep me off my feet? No, gosh no. Grand gestures are wholly unnecessary. I just want someone I can count on. I just want him to do little things to make me sure he’s the real deal.

Dating today is tough, and we women always seem to have doubts about the guys that roll into our lives. Does he like me? Are his motives genuine? Can I trust him completely? Guessing means you usually can’t, and confusion isn’t a good thing.

Most women would like to erase that. So if he puts in the time and does the little things, it’s like a screening process for us. He’s more likely to be into us as human beings, not hookups. He’s more likely to be Mr. Right when we’re over dealing with all those Mr. Wrongs. That’s why chivalry is as important now as it ever was.

Here’s to all the women who are looking for that chivalrous, good-hearted guy. He’s out there. These are the things he does to make us swoon. (And to all those chivalrous, good-hearted guys, keep doing what you’re doing. We love you for it.)

Here are a few of the cutest ones that would make any girl swoon:

1. Call. It would be nice to receive a phone call instead of text messages. While a text shows you were on his mind, a phone call is more personal. Call, don’t text a date invitation. Just the fact that you would take the time to actually call a woman to ask her out on a date will put you light years ahead of your competition (of which there is a lot).

2. Offer you his jacket. When the weather turns colder, and you have on light clothing, it’s cute when he offers you his jacket. It’s a sweet gesture.

3. Put your hand on the small of her back when introducing her to someone. This is something I read a long time ago and it stuck with me for some reason. This is a passive sign of affection and isn’t inappropriate in a public setting, but it bonds the two of you together and helps her feel more comfortable.

4. Open the door for her. The door to the restaurant, the car door, the door to the car picking you up. Whatever door is relevant to you both walking through, please do not lose sight of this simple but often overlooked act of kindness.

5. Suffering through a girly movie. When a man volunteers to endure a girly show or movie because he knows you’ll enjoy it, he earns major bonus points. (Even more if he does so without complaining or expecting something in return.)

Women in turn should respect the act of chivalry. I know many women out there who do not want the door opened for them because it makes them feel like their power or independence is somehow being taken away from them. They are aggressive and headstrong in society. It may not be because they want to be, but because to make it in the world, they have to be. This is true. However, can you imagine a world where chivalry didn’t exist at all? Would you want your daughter marrying a man that didn’t show her this appreciation for being the amazing, strong, supporting, dynamic woman that she is?

In short, that’s what chivalry is — a choice. The choice to do the right things, for the right reasons, at the right times.

April McManus

“Good Girl”

What’s the most romantic thing I could possibly do for myself? What about setting my alarm for the break of dawn and getting up even though it’s oh-so-early and going to sunrise yoga by myself? Really? Really! My best strategy for really making the most of my life is to get really, really good and grounded. Connect with myself. Connect with my feelings and emotions. Connect with my wants and my needs. Connect with my desires.

Now, breathe!

#April McManus
@April McManus

My Life As A Superhero (um, I mean Single Mom)!


I’m at a point in my life where I know what I want and what makes me happy. Settling for just anyone or anything is not an option. I have worked so hard all of my life to become a respectable, smart, successful woman and I know that I can have a relationship that is fulfilling if I work hard in it as well.

I love to have fun and laugh…Im witty and like when someone can throw me off a little (or a lot)! I think I’m pretty funny…I like to make people laugh and feel comfortable and relaxed around me!   I have a good heart but I hide it with a hard exterior. I’m not much into the bar scene anymore. I don’t hate it, but I’d prefer to spend quality time with someone I care about rather than a bunch of people I don’t know.

I am strong minded, strong willed  stubborn, but that’s what makes a great mother, an incredible friend, an amazing daughter and phenomenal portrait photographer.  I don’t think anyone ever starts out thinking “when I grow up, I want to be a single parent…,” but one day, you wake up and find that is where you are. The road of life just takes people on an uncertain path…at least it has for me.   I lost my mind when I had my children but I have found my soul.

FUN STUFF:  I like to work hard and play harder. I am a little crazy, outspoken, I am fun-loving, no time for drama, a tad OCD at times, and one of the best-friends you can ask for.  Sometimes to my disadvantage, I am a very independent person. I work full- time, am a sports mom who goes to practices and games, fixes things around the house by myself-for the most part, and don’t like to ask for help. (I am learning how to ask, but it’s hard)  I enjoy new adventures.

I wake up by 4:00am and asleep by 11pm pretty much everyday b/c I am a firm believer in hard work  success.  I am a social chameleon, I effortlessly blend with most all social groups.  I currently live about 15 miles from the beach and have become spoiled to it.  I am never to busy for my family/friends, I have a shoe addiction, I am dog sorta chick no cats for me, coffee keeps me going!

I’d love to meet someone who compliments my life, challenges me, and makes me better. I want to do that for someone as well. I can appreciate a man who is comfortable in his own skin and who is well established. I’ve become comfortable and happy being alone, but I’m definitely ready to share my life with someone special.  My better half would be the type of guy that enjoys his career, but “works to live.” I’m looking for someone that can engage in good conversation and is also a good communicator – there’s definitely a difference. Someone that enjoys the finer things that life has to offer, but likes to get his hands dirty too. We bring out the best in each other, always striving to be better and do better. You have a close relationship with your family and have a tremendous amount of self-worth. You enjoy sports and being active, but it’s more about the fun than the exercise.

The best thing about starting over is I didn’t look back

Well, hello there beautiful!  Hope all is well in your life.  Pretty sure if your reading this blog then you too are a courageous single mom too. 

 Single mom by choice?!?!  That’s absurd….right?  Wrong!  For me personally, these past couple of years have been extremely busy. Between, the divorce, keeping up with my photography company, learning a new career outside of the home, raising three daughters, 2 year rottie puppy and now blog writing at night on our crazy yet fun lives – I’m stretched a wee bit thin. Then there’s laundry, food shopping, cooking and cleaning to get done. Okay, okay…maybe I’m not really keeping up with the cooking and cleaning part.  And, at the end of the day, I wouldn’t trade it for all the gold in the world. 

Life as a single parent who works outside the home is rewarding and challenging. Life as a single mother who works outside the home is even more-so. I believe I am pretty typical, it seems, of many professionals just trying to balance regular old life.  I’ve tried to organize my days, but a truthfully, a systematic weekly schedule doesn’t work for me right now.

It’s a beautiful Sunday evening. I’m typing this, listening to the hum of the washing machine while Mari is sitting in her bedroom. As soon as I hit publish, I hope to take a quick walk. 


Optimistic Single Woman