Happy Holidays from The Sweetest Romance Authors! Visit with us today as we share our favorite holiday memories. And we want to hear from you, too! What is your favorite memory?
Make sure to leave a comment with your contact information, and you'll be entered to win some fabulous free reads! Up for grabs:
Taking Advantage by Larry Hammersley
Sabotage by Anne Patrick
Love Turns the Tide by Gail Pallotta
Loyalty's Web by Joyce DiPastena (U.S. Only)
Turtle Soup by Danielle Thorne
In Good Faith by Regina Andrews
Larry Hammersley: A Favorite Holiday Memory
Sixty or more years ago, I received an electric train and accessories for Christmas. I still have that old Lionel Train and all the tracks, search light, stop light, buzzer for the track, all the neat cars, train depot, and other attachments. Many hours of fun have I gained down through the years with that!
Did you know?
My newest short romance story, TAKING ADVANTAGE, is a sweet romance involving two high school seniors in a 1949 school. Zack Thompson is crazy about Gloria Garner but he’s afraid he doesn’t have a chance. In his way are three sports heroes that she’s dating and Zack is no good at sports. The biggest obstacle is Gloria’s mother who insists that Gloria only dates the jocks because she has been basketball queen for all four years. Can Zack overcome these odds?
My favorite holiday memory is a trip my family took to my grandmother’s house one Christmas when I was young. All of my aunts, uncles and cousins were there, and the kids got to stay next door in an old building once used by the Katy Railroad. We spent the days exploring the old depot behind my grandma’s house, and the nights were spent huddled around the old wood-burning stove in our sleeping bags, giggling the night away.
Did you know?
My latest release is an inspirational romantic suspense titled, SABOTAGE. District Judge Katie McKinley takes her career very seriously. No one knows that better than her old childhood friend and first love, Graham Bishop. Her ruling cost him his family’s ranch. So it’s no surprise when an attempt is made on her life that the sheriff turns his suspicions to Graham. Katie feels horrible knowing what her ruling cost her old friend, and knows his outburst in her courtroom gave the sheriff every right to suspect him. But the Graham Bishop she grew up with would never harm her. Even when all the evidence points to him she refuses to believe it. Could she be wrong?
SABOTAGE can be purchase from my publisher:
or most online bookstores.
It was Christmas Eve. None of us could find my elderly great-aunt and Grandmother. Known in our family for their delicious Southern cooking, they left a juicy three-layer coconut cake and a fruit cake on the kitchen counter. But they were gone when we got up at eight o‘clock. My mother called the hairdresser and several stores in the small town at the foothills of the North Carolina mountains where we lived. No one had seen them. By four o’clock in the afternoon my mother’s face turned ashen with worry. I got an uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach from listening to the possibilities, the most likely being a car wreck in our tiny, peaceful community where nothing ever happened. My other aunt suggested that a stranger could have ridden through town and kidnapped them. By six o’clock my mother had tears in her eyes, and I hardly could hold back mine. At seven-thirty the headlights of a car cut through the dark. We ran to the door. There stood my great-aunt and Grandmother in jeans and sweatshirts. My grandmother had a hoe; my great-aunt, a shovel. My grandmother said, “I had a dream several months ago. In it I saw a spot where our ancestors buried silver to hide it from robbers, so we went to dig it up. We wanted to give it to you for Christmas. It isn’t there.” She looked over at my aunt. “I guess we look awful to be celebrating Christmas.”
They looked beautiful to me.
Did you know?
In Gail Pallotta's, LOVE TURNS THE TIDE…
Shattered by a failed romance and challenged by a new job, feature writer Cammie O’Shea dreads meeting Bill Collins, editor of The Sun Dial, a new newspaper in Destin, Florida. But her real source of angst turns out to be Vic Deleona, a real estate developer she interviews. Still in pain from her heartbreaking split-up, Cammie wants no new relationships. But Vic thwarts her efforts to complete his article, arranges extra meetings and attempts to court her. She resists his advances. However, after several mysterious break-ins occur, including one at Cammie’s condo, she and Vic launch their own investigation into the crimes. Cammie grows fond of him, but she gets an opportunity to return home to her old job. Will Vic solve the crimes and win Cammie’s heart, or will she leave Destin?
One of my favorite Christmas memories is a relatively recent one. My dad passed away shortly before Christmas in 2002 after an extended hospital stay. I was so sad, I didn’t want to put up a Christmas tree that year. My sister (both of us are single), stayed after the funeral to spend Christmas with me. She put up the tree and decorated it beautifully, bringing a lift to my spirits that I had tried so hard to push away. But she didn’t stop at that. On Christmas morning, she talked me into improvising a brunch modeled on a Christmas high tea that I had attended the year before. Our 1st course included such mundane dishes as mini-peanut butter and ham sandwiches, the 2nd homemade scones with jam, the dessert course Hershey Kisses and other Christmas candies. And because neither of us drink tea, we served hot chocolate instead and called it first a “High Cocoa”, and then a “High Kokolorum” after a poem that I memorized and recited in the 5th grade. (Click here for the poem. - http://www.dansanders.net/2009/10/23/a-dash-of-the-dictionary/ ) Every year since, my sister and I continue to get together on Christmas and share a High Kokolorum. I love this memory because it proves that it is never too late in life to begin a wonderful new tradition!
Did you know?
Joyce DiPastena is the author of two sweet medieval romances, Loyalty’s Web (a 2007 Whitney Award finalist) and Illuminations of the Heart (a 2009 Whitney Award finalist). Her short medieval Christmas story, “An Epiphany Gift for Robin” is included in the short story anthology, Stolen Christmas. All her titles are available on Amazon.com. You can learn more about Joyce and her books by visiting her website at http://www.joyce-dipastena.com and her JDP NEWS blog at http://jdp-news.blogspot.com .
E.A. West: A Memory
My favorite holiday memory happened on Christmas day a few years ago. My grandma, who loved , had passed away a couple of months earlier, and it was difficult knowing that for the first time in my life I wouldn't see her for Christmas. It was a frigid day with the actual temperature below zero, snow covering the ground, and not a cloud in the pale blue sky. As my family headed out to visit relatives, we started seeing an unusually large number of cardinals, my grandma's absolute favorite bird. Then, just a few blocks from our house, it began to snow, something else my grandma loved. As the big fluffy white snowflakes drifted down from that sunny, cloudless sky, we all felt like the cardinals and snow were God's way of telling us my grandma was happy and still with us in our hearts. It was a Christmas miracle.
Did You Know?
My most recent release, Riley’s Mission, is a short romantic suspense that’s perfect for an evening in front of a cozy fire. Jade Rosen is a former Israeli operative in hiding from a cold-blooded killer she left in a Syrian prison. Riley Jackson is an Indiana National Guardsman charged with locating a missing terrorist and his guards, who aren’t responding. Trapped in a flooded hospital, with Jade desperately ill and Riley working to protect her, can they find their happy ending or will they pay the ultimate price at the hand of a man determined to see Jade dead?
My favorite memory is the years my mother forced us all to go caroling, and she ended up being the only one who sang. As teenagers, we loved the treats, but we were sometimes mortified by our mom's holiday enthusiasm. To this day, I still love making cookies and treats for the holidays, I just don't sing about it! (Photo: Christmas Morning, 2006)
Did you know?
Danielle is the author of sea adventure romances, BY HEART AND COMPASS, TURTLE SOUP, THE PRIVATEER, and a just-released Regency with a Navy hero, JOSETTE. Check out her books at www.daniellethorne.jimdo.com!
In TURTLE SOUP…Sea turtles may be endangered but after an encounter with marine biologist, Jack Brandon, nothing will stop Sara Hart from naming her deli, Turtle Soup. When Jack takes a job at the nearby Georgia Aquarium, Sara finds the environmental poster boy at her door, hungry and carrying a chip on his shoulder. Neither thinks the other has what it takes, until a scuba class reveals what lies beneath the surface.
Christmas in New England is filled with tradition, snow, sentimentality, sending Christmas cards and religious services. Many times families and friends will go door-to-door, singing Christmas carols. I love the celebratory nature of Christmas, the hope and the humility of the Lord’s beginnings.
We all get together for a buffet on Christmas Eve, and then attend Midnight Mass together. I am in the choir, which is really a privilege. It gives me chills to sing the glorious praises of the Lord, and to look out into the congregation and see the beaming faces of my family and loved ones. Due to everyone’s busy schedules, Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve is one of the only times all year through that we are all together.
On Christmas morning, we wake up and race downstairs to put the turkey in the oven and see the gifts Santa has left for us all. Then we have a big breakfast and go for a walk to see our neighbors, particularly the ones who might not have a lot of family in the area. After that, it's back to my house! My family and I prepare a Christmas feast, and everyone starts arriving around 1pm. The visiting and feasting winds down around 9pm, and then we go next door to my sister's for dessert. She makes sugarplums and mince pie tarts, yum, and we toast with champagne. Then we go home and collapse!
Did you know?
Regina is giving away a copy of IN GOOD FAITH!
We hope you enjoyed our pictures and memories. Please leave a comment and your contact information to be entered in our Holiday drawings!