Jolene checking in from the Texas Hill Country. Today is release day for The Texans Twins! While trying to keep myself distracted so I won’t obsess over my latest release I’ve been decorating for Christmas.
As I open boxes and go through all the decorations I get to recall all the blessing from the past.
Sometimes you get no warning that something will happen the last time. Without fanfare, it slips into the past. The last time you carry your sleeping child from the car to their bed. The last time you watch the Olympics with your dad. Or the Christmas that will be the last time your mom gives you her annual angel.
When we bought our first house, I decided I wanted a Christmas tree based on the Luke 2:8-20.
Luke 2:8-20 New International Version (NIV)
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it was amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.
That year, twenty-one years ago she gave me the first of many angles. It became an annual event. For ten years I would have a new angel to add to my collection.
We lost her without warning in November eleven years ago. Now each year as I pull out my ornaments it’s like I get to have a conversation with my mom again. We get to remember each holiday and what was unique about that year. Each angel on the mantel is a special gift from my sisters, mother, husband, and daughters.
In my collection on the mantel, you might notice a little white plastic reindeer. My great-grandmother let me pick an ornament off her tree when I was five. It would be her last Christmas.
The interesting thing is for the last eleven years someone (without knowing my mother) has given me an angel. Some are from students others from family or friends. Last Friday I had dinner with a few of my writing buddies, and one of them brought us all little angels.
It makes me smile to think my mother is still managing to make sure I get a new angel for my house each year.
As a writer, everything in my life inspires the stories I create. In my current series Lone Star Legacy, it is centered around four sisters. I can’t imagine writing a story without family threads.
Have I mentioned that TODAY Is RELEASE DAY for the paperback? If you preordered, it is being delivered. You can also find it at most Walmarts and at some Barns and Nobles. If you go into the bookstore and can’t find it, they can order it for you. ?
The Texan’s Twins:
Big Texan Reunion
Between providing for her five-year-old twins and achieving her dream of running a wildlife sanctuary, Danica Bergmann has no room for anything—or anyone—else. So when the wildlife volunteer she’s taken on turns out to be Reid McAllister, her secret husband, who disappeared before she got a chance to reveal she was pregnant, it flips her world upside down. Six years ago he wasn’t worth chasing down, but Danica can tell Reid’s a changed man—and he’s still the only man she’s ever loved. It’s a long road to redemption, but can Danica learn to trust Reid with their children…and their future?
The Texan’s Twins are out now, but interesting enough it has a Valentine’s Day theme. It was also inspired by the song “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Around the Old Oak Tree.” The hero has been in prison. It is a story of forgiveness and redemption. This hero had me in tears, wanting him to get his happy ending.
If you love Christmas stories and haven’t read mine yet, there are two available in ebooks and are sale!
My first book: Lone Star Holiday.
A Texas Christmas Wish:
I’ll pick one person at random that tells me about their favorite ornament to receive this angel and a copy of The Texan’s Twins.