So get cozy by the fire, grab a cup of coco and get ready to read some amazing traditions and some fantastic recommendations for the holidays.
When I thought about doing a guest post for Michelle it took me a few minutes to realize that maybe the oldest tradition I can think of is still a favorite. When I was a kid our neighborhood set luminaries out every Christmas Eve. The luminaries are just a paper bag with sand in the bottom and a candle, basically- you set them out along the road (and maybe your driveway too), light the candles, and voila- a wonderful ambience. We would always go to my grandparents house on Christmas Eve, so after lighting the luminaries we would drive through the neighborhood and the road would be lined with lights.
Even more magical was the ride home. After dinner and a few presents we would come home and it was fully dark by then. The luminaries looked magical, especially if there was snow falling. Sure a few here and there would have blown out, but mostly they were still burning. I’d look out the window and see the lights, thinking about Christmas and presents and snow. Great memories.
I live on the other side of the state now, and I haven’t seen many luminaries over here, and even in the old neighborhood not everyone does it, but they still do for the most part and I miss it. It’s a wonderful, easy way to enhance the Christmas eve magic. I still look back fondly on lighting the candles with my dad as evening falls- on my favorite night of the year.
My True Love Gave To Me is a holiday anthology that came out in 2014, but I never got to it last year. This year I thought I would give it a shot, as a holiday themed anthology sounded fun. So… a year later here are my thoughts. It was a little hit or miss for me, but mostly a hit. Rather than cover each story, I’m just going to share a bit on the ones I liked.
Midnights by Rainbow Rowell starts this collection off, and I think is one of the better stories. She seems to have a knack for getting in the heads of teenagers, or sharing and reminding us of that one of a kind time. The joy and terror of first love, or love in general… as we’re becoming who we are. A great way to start this off.
Angels in the Snow by Matt de la Pena is a fun story about a poor kid who is cat sitting over the holidays, and how his life changes when he meets the girl upstairs.
Polaris IS Where You’ll Find Me by Jenny Han is a short tale about an orphan girl living at the North Pole. Whimsical and cute, I enjoyed it.
It’s A Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown is another winner, about love found in a Christmas tree lot. I won’t say much else other than to say this is a nice story, and I would have liked to see more.
Beer Buckets and Baby Jesus is a cute story about expectations and how people are often not what they seem.
Christmas, CA by Kiersten White is a neat story about seeing things for how they really are, and the sacrifices we make for loved ones. One of my favorites.
Star of Bethlehem by Ally Carter is about a girl who just wants to go anywhere, to get away- and does so, finding herself in the unlikeliest place. And maybe the best place. Another good story.
All in all this was a fun collection, and while a few of the stories didn’t work for me, by and large this is a winner. There’s lots of variety here and I think a wide range of readers will find something to enjoy with a mug of something warm.
About the Guest
Thank you for stopping by to check out today’s Holiday Tradition and Book
Have a great day!