Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Ho, Ho, Ho! No Gifts - No Snow

If you don’t have all your shopping done yet, you better hurry. This year, since our children are grown, married, and far away, we’ve all decided to skip gift-giving and just buy for the one-year-old grandson in Alaska. When I mentioned the idea of not gift-giving this year, I could hear the collective sighs of my daughter-in-law and son in Texas and daughter-in-law and son in Alaska. Trying to purchase the perfect present for adults, and then having to ship them out is a nightmare. So we’ve all decided to Skype together as usual and see what each family bought our first grandchild.

Little Alaskan Harvey will be bringing in a haul this year. And to be honest, I had a fun-filled time searching and buying toys again. For the larger, more bulky ones, Amazon with its shipping was perfect. My son, Jeff, in Anchorage is receiving Harvey’s haul and wrapping them for us.

Although my husband, Scott, and I will be celebrating alone, we will do our usual enjoyable celebration of the holiday in Florida with NO SNOW. Instead of going out—and there are spectacular restaurants in New Smyrna Beach—we cook a full Christmas meal together. This year we’ll do our usual crab legs and crab cake Christmas Eve dinner with all the fixings. And on Christmas day, we’ve decided upon ham and all its complimentary dishes. And yes, I also bake cookies, if just half a batch of various kinds. The smell of chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven is one of the most glorious holiday smells I know.

What am I working on now? I’m working on a historical romantic mystery with a setting involving the early logging industry in the 1800s in Clearfield, Pennsylvania, when white pine was king of the forest. I pulled the manuscript back from my editor to try to rewrite and trim it a bit, so real edits will begin in January. The working title is called, “Willie, My Love.” The heroine, Wilhelmina Wydcliffe, is a feisty logger’s daughter, and the hero is a handsome, Chesapeake Bay sea captain named Jonathan Wain.

This year was a good one, even though there were some difficulties with health that had to be overcome. I hope the year ahead proves to be a splendid one—for us and our family, friends, neighbors, and associates.

Have a very Merry Christmas and a healthy and Happy New Year!  
May the sleigh bells ring, the children sing…and everything be merry and bright.

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