Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Christmas Celebration

For the next week I'm featuring our Christmas novella, Riverwalk Christmas. Grab a cup of coffee, tea or hot chocolate and join us for some of our thoughts about Christmas. At the end you'll find a question for you to answer and comment. The prize for this week will be a special Christmas "Box" filled with Christmas goodies including books and a special Christmas Angel Teddy Bear.

Blurb for A Riverwalk Christmas
A vivid setting, rich in cultural history, Christmastime along the San Antonio Riverwalk is a delightful setting for four modern romances. Ecko finally meets the right kind of guy, but can he trust her motives? Valerie hires an old flame to revive her business, but will he stick around? Gabriela has a chance to forgive and find love, but can she? Sienna's job brings her the chance of a lifetime, but will her rowdy family spoil it?

Now some answers about their own Christmases from the authors.
What is your favorite Christmas memory?

My best Christmas memory is bringing home our pre-mature son for Christmas. He only weighed 41/2 pounds, but he was the most precious gift for us.

It is hard to choose one 'best' Christmas memory, because there are so many that come to mind. But I do remember one Christmas in particular, Christmas of 1993. It was my first Christmas that I ever spent away from my family, and I'd driven with a friend to Illinois to visit her family for Christmas. Her parents pulled me right in and included me in their traditions as if I were another daughter. Then when we left church that evening, it had started to snow. On Christmas morning when I woke up and looked out the window, it was truly a White Christmas. I gasped like a little kid when I saw snow covering the trees, everything. I felt like it was a special gift, just for me from God that year.

Two years ago, my eldest son was in London attending grad school and not expected to return home for the holidays. Imagine my shock when, on Christmas night, he walked into my mother's kitchen and surprised me! The following year - last year - my kids arranged for a trip to London for me to visit Josh, another HUGE surprise. These two are tied for first place in Christmas memories in recent years.

What is your Dream Gift for this Christmas?

My dream gift is to have all our children here at one time including all our grandchildren and great-grandson.
I would love to have a 3G Kindle

That all my children will be in the same room at the same time at some point during the holiday. I think it's doable, but we've yet to figure out how.

What is your favorite Christmas traditon?
One of our favorite holiday traditions is our New Year’s Eve open house. Our youngest son was born on December 31 and we always celebrated his birthday with a party for him. When he was older, we’d go out to an early dinner with him then he’d go out with friends and we started having friends over for that evening and have been doing that for over twenty years. We’re already making plans for this year.

We have an "open house" on Christmas Eve, immediately after the service is over. We love to cook and bake lots of goodies, sweet and savory, but one family really doesn't need to eat that much food. So it was natural to invite our friends to stop by for a few minutes, say hello and celebrate, and then go on their merry way. This is our 15th year.

I'm a newlywed, so I'm looking forward to making new holiday traditions that will include our blended families. Suggestions are welcome.
What does the gift of Jesus mean in your life?
Without the gift of Jesus, I wouldn't be who I am today. I wouldn't be married to a wonderful Christian man or have the family I have. I wouldn't have the joy of knowing Him as my personal Lord and Savior. He is everything to me and without Him, I am nothing.

It's hard to be brief, but looking back over the Christmases of my life, I am thankful that the one constant I've had is Christ. Even when I wasn't making very good choices or acknowledging Him, He was still there with mercy and love. Life brings such joy, but it can also blindside us with those painful curveballs. In spite of that, Christ has been there no matter what, more than any friend or family member could be. I can't say enough what that means to me, and I wish everyone could understand and know that for themselves. Kathleen:

Jesus is the reason for the season. The saying is oft repeated but really gets to the core of the greatest gift. Without God, I would have nothing to offer. Thus, I cling to His gift and pray I never take Him - or it - for granted.
Now what is a tradition your family has at Christmas?
Tell us about it and be in the drawing for our special Christmas Box filled with goodies for Christmas.
Sorry, but we have to limit this to the United States. Blessings, and we hope to hear from a lot of you.



Andrea Schultz said...

Hi Martha -
We always put up a tree. This year, we will go without, due to our VERY feisty 12 week old Cocker pup, Sammy!
Blessings -
andrealschultz at gmail dot com

Ponderings by Andrea blog

Karen said...

Hey Martha, My favorite tradition at Christmas is our whole family getting together and going to Christmas Eve service together at midnight. If our church doesnt have a Christmas Eve service we find a church that does. I have done this my whole life and it keeps me focused on the reason for the season! Also our family reads the Christmas story before we open presents and go around the room and say what God has done for us this year or what we have learned about God this year. Those are my favorite traditions.

Edwina said...

On Christmas Eve, I cook a special dinner and my family eats before we leave for the 9PM candlelight Christmas Eve service. It is, for me, the highlight of the season and the year. My son lives out of state (currently) and it's the one time of the year that all of us are together, in church and we celebrate the Eucharist together.

Linda said...

When our son was little, we'd bake a birthday cake for Jesus and sing happy birthday to Him and pray before opening gifts.

Now we go to my mother's (actually sister's since mom is in assisted living).
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Anne Payne said...

We have snack foods and watch It's a Wonderful Life and Mickey's Christmas Carol on Christmas Eve:) Obviously, we started this when our children were very young but we still love getting together and watching them! My daughter and I always watch While You Were Sleeping during the Christmas break as our girl time together :)

Katy said...

Our tradition is to drive around town and look at Christmas lights on Christmas eve. I remember doing it as a child and being awed by the beautiful decorations, and my husband and I have enjoyed doing it with our kids. They love looking at Christmas lights.

:) srfbluemama[at]gmail[dot]com

Jan Marie said...

Our family had a tradition of putting up our tree (only a real one would do) on my sister's birthday which is exactly two weeks before Christmas.

My family now has a tradition of everyone gathering together on Christmas Eve to make Christmas cookies and then loading up in our cars to view the Walkway of Lights in a nearby town. The Walkway of Lights is very beautiful and unique and people come from miles around to see them.

I would love to be the lucky winner of this Christmas collection - please add my name to the drawing. Thanks!


Unknown said...

One of our traditions is to read the Christmas story. Where would we be without that birth so long ago. Please enter me in this giveaway. Thanks so much!


Ann Lee Miller said...

We go to Christmas Eve service, eat dinner, read the Christmas story from the Bible, and open gifts.

Martha A. said...

We have an old tradition of making homemade Ravioli's together, and it is always fun once we start...alot of work, but it makes Christmas day fun. On Christmas Eve, the last few years we started made a tradition to get together, watch Christmas movies and have appetizers for dinner...
It was fun to read your memories and wishes!

Wendy said...

Going to late night Christmas Eve service. I love it. For awhile the service was moved to 3 or 5 pm and we couldn't make it. They just added a 10pm service and I can't wait to start up the tradition again.

Merry said...

We have a family box that everyone adds to and we open Christmas Eve. It can be something fun like a game or something to encourage us in our walk with the Lord.
worthy2bpraised at gmail dot com

Pegg Thomas said...

Since he was 7 years old, our son has played Silent Night on his guitar for our Christmas Eve Service. He's 23 now and that is still a very special thing for us. We also love cutting down the Christmas tree. We make a huge deal about picking the right tree, stomping all through the woodlot, bickering (all in fun) over which tree is better, and finally cutting "the" tree down.

Thanks for entering me in the drawing!

twinwillowsfarm at gmail dot com

JackieW said...

When my daughter was a baby I bought a bird ornament for the tree and every year after that we bought a bird ornament...when she was old enough she helped me pick out a new one each year. When she was in her own home I gave her all the ornaments so that she could then put on her own christmas trees. Some years there were lots of bird ornaments and other years they seemed to be scarce. I wrote a little story about the birds and gave to her along with all the ornaments so she could remember how much fun we used to have collecting them. JFWisherd(at)aol(dot)com

CarlybirdK said...

My mom had a wonderful way of wrapping Christmas presents for me and my two brothers. She would wrap all of my presents in green tissue paper, my brother Dave's in red tissue paper and my brother Scott's in white tissue paper. It always looked so pretty to come downstairs on Christmas morning, and it made opening presents much more fun. That is my favorite family tradition.
Thank you for the great giveaway!

Lanita Thomas, said...

My Christmas tradition was helping my great grandmother polish our silverware and helping her prepare our Christmas dinner. At the time, I thought it was a horrible task but now as an adult who truly misses my great grandmother, I would love to be helping her now.

Unknown said...

Have really enjoyed and appreciated the sharing of all these memories and traditions... You might say my favorite tradition is that there is no tradition, each year is unique unto it's self.... looking forward to getting to know this site better... also appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the give away..... GOD bless...


Anonymous said...

Our Christmas tradition is on Christmas Eve...we go to Christmas Eve Service at church and then drive around looking at Christmas lights. We then come home, eat, and get to bed to be ready for Christmas morning!

Unknown said...

My favorite tradition at Christmas is bringing out all of the decorations and letting the kids put them on the tree. I love reliving each year as the ornaments come out, since we purchase a new one each holiday...representing something special that has happened that year. It brings joy to my heart to reread the misspelled writings my children have made that are in that box as well. There is not one moment more special to me than the eyes of my children when the tree is fully decorated and we turn on the lights. I hope they always have that light in their eyes as they grow older.

Anne Payne said...

For the past 27 yrs our family gets together on Christmas Eve for snacks and to watch our favorite Christmas movies, It's A Wonderful Life & Mickey's Christmas Carol.


Anonymous said...

I've enjoyed lighting the chritmas candle every night! We usually do it after dinner and I read to the family. When they were younger we read Christmas stories to them. Usually picture books! It was fun. We'd also build the manager until everyone was in place for christmas.

We read from a Family Advent book. But it's not as magical as when the kids were younger!!

the Book Club Network

norafindinghope (at)

Martha W. Rogers said...

Thank you so much for dropping by. I really have enjoyed reading about your Christmas traditions The winner of our Christmas Surprise Box is Jan Marie. I hope you have fun with your goodies.

Jan Marie said...

Thank you very much, Martha! I am so excited to be the winner - I enjoyed reading about everyone's traditions. I sent my address to you in an email. Let me know if you don't get it for some reason. Thanks again for this terrific giveaway.

Jan Marie

Anonymous said...

I have enjoyed Christmas since I was a small girl.
Things I remember are so minute compared to learning the real meaning as I grew up.
I love the Lord more with easch passing day and to celebrate his birth is the most important part.