It’s nearing Christmas and I’m so excited! I’ve been in that “magical time of year” haze. Especially since putting up our Christmas tree.
For those of you who don’t know my most favorite thing to do during the holidays is writing by the light of my Christmas tree.
Each morning in December, I get up really early while everyone is asleep, turn on the tree lights, and nestle in my couch with a cup of hot chocolate—laced with a peppermint stick, of course—in my hand and my computer in lap.
It’s such a blissful time.
December is the most favorite time I spend with my craft, a time like no other, no matter the month, season, or holiday. I don’t know how to explain it, but there is just something different about sitting in the shadows of such a timeless symbol and elegant reminder of the innocence of Christmas.
The red, blue, green, and yellow lights reflecting off the tinsel brings, not only an inner peace I don’t know if I could justify with simple words, but memories of Christmas’s long since passed. Unwrapping gifts as a child from family and friends, decorating the tree year after year, and now watching the spirit and magic of Christmas in the eyes of my daughters.
With each passing year, more and more homemade ornaments fill the pine scented branches of our yearly tree, bringing more memories that will last throughout the years just as much as the ones they join. Nearly all of the ornaments on my tree are the same ones I put on the each of the trees growing up. Old Hallmark ones with the years 1988 and 1989 written on them. Handmade ones my Grandmother stitched and stuffed when my mom was a child and money was tight. Ones I made as a young child in school, and now ones my daughter has made. It’s funny how a badly painted ball by a two year old or a Styrofoam star covered in glitter can melt your heart.
In less than a couple of weeks, I will take each of the ornaments down, boxing them up for another year. I will miss them as I am not ready to let go of Christmas just yet. I feel this way every year, and this year is no different. Of course with the end of Christmas comes the last holiday of this season. Our time to celebrate 2018 is just around the corner—another year of everyday life and another year of counting down the days until I can write by the soft glow again.
So what do I have for you on this stop of the 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway Blog Hop hosted by Stuck in Books?
A free eBook copy of my novel In the Land of Gold set during the 1897 Klondike Gold Rush!
Cora Colton can’t believe she even doubts saying yes to Christopher Payton’s proposal. From a good family, wealthy, and charming, Christopher is perfect for her. However, seeing his band of gold and diamonds, she hesitates. Something is missing, something is wrong, but she just doesn’t know what that something is.
After her father’s sudden death, Cora travels to Tacoma and learns that she is now the owner of his gold claim in Dawson City, Canada. Throwing caution to the wind, she leaves her engagement ring on the table, and departs for Canada and the adventure of a lifetime.
Arriving in the canvas tent town of Skagway on the Klondike trail, Coral catches the attention of Flynn O’Neill, an Irishman who has lived on the trail, guiding stampeeders for a few years. A bond thrusts them together, but their pasts could be what tears them apart—if they can survive the hardships and death on the trail to the land of gold.
“So what’re yeh hiding from?” A deep voice with a heavy Irish accent, from behind me somewhere, invaded my thoughts.
“I beg your pardon?” Turning to face the speaker, I spun a little too far in the chair, and the room pitched and rolled.
The unshaved ruggedness of the stranger’s chiseled jaw line exaggerated his perfect, broad smile. In my whiskey-induced haze, his devilish grin nearly knocked me off my stool.
With piercing, dark brown eyes, and black messy hair, his utter deliciousness captivated me.
“What’re yeh hiding from?”
Not in the mood for casual conversation, I desired nothing more than to tell him to leave me alone. To shout at him for approaching a woman he didn’t know and asking such a ridiculous, personal question, but the coy, seduction in his voice stopped me. He left me breathless, and for a brief second, the absurd thought of kissing him crossed my mind—annoying me even more.
What is wrong with me? I can’t kiss a stranger. I’m a betrothed woman.
“What sort of a question is that?” I asked.
“Apparently, one yeh don’t want to answer,” the Irishman laughed as he sat on the barstool next to mine. “Only two different types of women walk into a bar and get drunk within the first five minutes. One type is looking for male company,” he paused and gave me a wink. “And the other is hiding from something she doesn’t want to face.”
“I’m not drunk,” I snapped. “And, I’m not the sort of woman who is looking for male company.”
He laughed again. “No, I didn’t think yeh were.” He leaned in to whisper the last word, and the gentle roll in his voice over the letter ‘r’ sent a chill down my spine.
“I’m an engaged woman.”
“Are yeh now? Well he’s a fortunate lad, then. Isn’t he?” the Irishman glanced over one shoulder and then the other. “I’d love to meet him.”
I cleared my throat. “He’s not here.”
“And, here I thought most men wouldn’t be too keen on their fiancée coming into a bar late at night all by herself.”
“He doesn’t know I’m here.”
My cheeks flushed, burning with embarrassment.
Why on earth did I just say that?
The Irishman smirked and glanced at me out of the corner of his eye. His expression amused.
“So, what’re yeh hiding from?”
Don’t forget to check out all the fabulous blogs on this hop!