Caroline Clemmons–ten days and counting.

Another oldie from Christmas last year. Giveaways over with.

 Our next guest, romance writer Miss Caroline Clemmons, is waiting by the fire to assail you with her memories of Christmas past. 😉 *Steps inside, closes door* What’s that? Yes, I promise, I’ll douse the flames before Santa shows up.

Ah, Caroline, good. We have guests waiting to meet you, dear, so anytime you’re ready, the floor is yours.

Ten Days and Counting…

by Caroline Clemmons

Yes, I’m as eager for Christmas Eve as any six-year-old kid. Anticipation swirls through our home. I’m a big list maker, so I’m checking off the list as if I were the real Mrs. Claus. Wait, maybe I am. LOL Tree up and decorated, cookies made, candies made, gifts wrapped (thank goodness for gift bags!) and under the tree, stockings hung by the chimney with care. Now I can relax and enjoy the holiday. Uh-oh! The cards, the Christmas cards aren’t addressed and stamped. Ah, well, that’s for this afternoon.

What are your favorite Christmas memories and traditions? Are they from your childhood, handed down for generations, or did they originate with you?

My parents each had dismal holidays as they grew up. When my dad was four, his mom died on Christmas Day. He and his siblings were never allowed to celebrate the time because my grandfather thought it would be disrespectful to Dad’s mom. My mom grew up very poor, and her stepfather showed marked favoritism to his own children. One year when my grandmother was ill, she sent my step-grandfather to town with the money to buy gifts for my mom, her sister, and her stepsister. Unfortunately, Mom’s stepfather bought her an orange, her sister and apple, and his daughter a doll. Sad year for my mom and her sister.

I don’t want to be Debbie Downer, so please let me tell you the happy result of the bad times my parents endured. As a child, I was always given a wonderful Christmas. (Actually, I had a wonderful childhood.) We didn’t have much money, but my parents made certain I didn’t realize it. Except for a Red Ryder B-B gun (my mom and dad really did say I’d put my eye out), I received everything I asked for from Santa. So did my brother–except for the year he asked for a pool table. Where he thought we’d put one in our small house, I have no idea. Anyway, Christmas was always a BIG day following a month filled with dreams and anticipation.

My favorite childhood Christmas was when I was three. I remember everything about that Christmas Eve, even where I sat and who was there. That year, we lived in Southern California and the Christmas Eve celebration was at our home. All the relatives were there. Santa arrived with gifts for each of the children. Imagine how impressed I was that Buster Reed knew Santa personally and arranged to pick him up at the airport just for us! Wow, who knew one of my favorite relatives had that kind of pull? Years later, I learned Santa was really Buster’s older brother, Roy, in a very realistic red velvet suit. Buster, Roy, and their brother Chester also had a sparse upbringing. Buster knew how to overcome adversity, and he determined to spread joy wherever he went…and he did for all of his life.

Fast-forward almost twenty-five years and my husband, our eldest daughter, and I were visiting the Reed family for Christmas. Once again, Santa appeared, this time crawling through the Reed’s two-way fireplace so that it appeared he’d come down the chimney. His appearance was so realistic that the college-aged non-family guests couldn’t believe Santa hadn’t slid down the chimney. The suit may have been the same one, or a very good copy, but this time Herschel Johnson wore it. My daughter’s eyes were as wide as mine must have been years and years earlier. She didn’t even look at the doll Santa gave her until he had to leave for the North Pole.

The point is, traditions don’t have to be many generations old. We can build our own traditions that we choose to observe each year. We have the opportunity to build new memories as we embrace the old ones. What traditions are your favorites? What traditions began with your generation?

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

*wipes tears from eyes* Oh, Caroline! How funny. Thanks so much for coming by with some Christmas Cheer. 😉 Folks, if you’d like to learn more about Caroline and her fine books, check out her website at: http://carolineclemmons.com/

Linda LaRoque–Born in Ice

This is another old one, from last year (December 14, 2011). So the Christmas references and the giveaway …yeah, all outdated and over with. Still, I wanted to keep this for post.

 Please welcome romance writer, Linda LaRoque to our little home to tell us a little about her futuristic tale, Born In Ice.

Born in Ice

This futuristic romantic suspense story grew from a dream, one of a woman frozen in a block of ice and found by fishermen from an undersea world. She’s taken to their home and with the help of advanced medical technology, she recovers. In time she learns she must learn to fit into their social system, one different from what she’s known.

Blurb:

Pulled from an icy grave…into a world of doubt and danger.

Frozen in ice for seventy-five years, Zana Forrester suffers the agony of rebirth to learn her son is dead, and her daughter’s whereabouts is unknown. The year is 2155. A man’s soothing voice and gray eyes haunt her drug induced dreams. When she recovers, she meets their owner and finds her heart in danger. But, a relationship isn’t a consideration; she must find her daughter.

Brock Callahan is drawn to the beautiful woman taken aboard his salvage ship. He’s determined she’ll be his wife and a mother to his young daughter, but he vows not to love her. All the women he’s loved died. While Zana searches for her daughter, Brock must protect Zana from the evil that threatens.

My editor for Champagne Books has graciously given permission for me to post the Prologue and Chapter One of Born in Ice, so for 10 days I’ll be sharing another installment.

Chapter One – installment 10

The vehicle was a self-sealing model, one that upon impact sealed
the interior from water and gases, including oxygen. The purpose was to
preserve any life-form inside. On occasion, individuals found in bergs were
thawed, and life resuscitated.

In 2065 when widespread temperatures dropped to dangerous levels,
a drug was developed to help protect body tissues, under certain conditions,
from freezing. Individuals five years and older took a monthly dose of the
preparation. The medication gave cells the ability to be frozen and thawed
with minimal damage. Of course, there were exceptions, cases where the
procedure failed, but the success rate was over fifty percent.

Lost in thought, Brock started at Luke’s question.

“Do you know the location of the deactivation switch, Skipper?”

“Yeah.” Brock walked around, peering inside the darkened windows.
He couldn’t see much, but a shadow in front gave him pause. “Call the
hospital, and have them send a hermetic pod in case we find a body.” The
container would help preserve life if it was present. He was nervous as hell.
Always was when they pulled one of these babies out of the water. It was a
constant shock to see a human, frozen and resembling a figure in a wax
museum display, but finding bodies without hope for survival haunted him.

“They’ve got one on the way.”

He reached under the driver’s side fender well. The small box was
easy to locate. He twisted the lever, opened the container, and pushed the
button. A flurry of clicks sounded around the car.

Brock opened the door. A blast of cold air whooshed out. The faint
smell of death washed over him filling him with dread. He staggered back for
a moment. The first thing he noticed was the child’s seat in the back. Empty.

He drew near again and saw the driver’s seat was reclined. A body lay curled
on its side holding a bundle close.

His voice gruff, he called, “Bring us a light. Luke, open the doors on
the other side.”

Digger held the light as Brock leaned in to look at the bowed figure
on the seat. From the person’s figure and profile, there was no denying the
delicate features beneath the mask belonged to a woman. She was dressed
from head to toe in a silvery grey snowsuit with fur-trimmed matching boots.
Fur as soft and as gray as a dove’s wing edged her parka making her appear
even more ethereal. Dark lashes brushed her face covering, similar to a ski
mask, made with cut-outs for her eyes, nose, and mouth.

He carefully pulled the blanket away from the bundle and groaned at
the mummified features of what had once been a child. Oh, God, no. Not a
baby.

Tomorrow I’ll be ending my blog tour on Rachel Firasek’s blog at http://www.rachelfirasek.com/ I hope you’ll stop by as I share 3 books on my Christmas Wish List. Thank you all for taking this journey with me. Wow, I can’t believe I made it!

 

Please leave a comment today to be entered into a drawing for an ecopy of A Way Back, my time travel set in the 1930s oil fields of Texas. Your name will also be entered in the GRAND PRIZE drawing for my blog tour—a KINDLE. A name will be draw at the end of my tour on December 16th.

Good luck!

 

I also have a release contest going. Sign up for my newsletter by emailing me at linda@lindalaroque.com with Born in Ice in the subject line. Your name will be added to the drawing for this rhinestone frog pin. For each of my releases I try to find a piece of jewelry significant to the story. After reading Born in Ice you’ll understand why I chose this frog.

Wow. sounds great, Linda! Good luck with it. 🙂 And once again, sorry for the delay. Hopefully, my minions have locked the zombie back in her grave and we won’t have this trouble again! Thanks so much for your patience. Folks, don’t forget to leave Linda a comment so you get in the running for this cute frog. And for more on Linda LaRoque’s works, see her website, or her blog.

and if you’d like to check out–or purchase–Born In Ice (or A Way Back) for yourself, you can do so here and here.

Have a great day.

*GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED

My favorite holiday.

My favorite holiday? Halloween. I know, how that must sound, but I just love dressing up, and with my brother enamored of it too, we sometimes go all out with tableux and so forth for the holiday. Second favorite holiday is Christmas, of course–the colors, the food, the gift exchanges, what’s not to love? 🙂 It’s all the stressful stuff I could do without.