Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Countdown to Christmas 7

I'm late today because it's been rather a difficult day -  a time when news from several sources has brought me up against the reminder that, although so much of the world  seems to be celebrating, buying and wrapping presents, enjoying parties, planning get-togethers,  selecting lots of lovely food and drink, there are others who are struggling with sadness and pain, illness and the shock of loss.

So I want to take a moment to think of   those of you who for whom this holiday time is not the joy and happiness it is for others - those of you whose Christmnas is touched with sadness and loss that has taken the sparkle from it.  Having lost my dear Mother in law earlier in the year, it's hard to have this first Christmas when I haven't selected a special gift for her or been able to make up the stocking that she always said she was  too olde for - but that her enjoyment proved you're never too old for a Christmas stocking!

To all of you who are dealing with something like this, perhaps the illness of a loved one, or a more recent loss - my heart goes out to you, and I send my sympathy and thoughts in the hope that they might help just a little.

So I think it's appropriate that the winner of today's prize giveaway - the copy of  Blind-Date Brides - is Alison, whose best 'gift' touched me so much.  And I also related so much to the  pencils with your name on them Alison - I had some of those once and I loved them too. Charlie pounced right on the cat treat on your name so he must have agreed.  Please send your postal address to me - as alway,  use the email at the bottom of the page.

Today's giveaway is a copy of another earlier title of mine - The Italian's Forced Bride.  (2006)

"As long as I want you, you stay — and you only leave when I give you permission to go."
Alice Howard spent six passionate months as Domenico Parrisi's mistress. But she knew he would never love her back and would soon discard her — so she left him.
But now Domenico wants her back in his bed, and his terms of possession are the same as before—until he makes a discovery that changes everything: Alice is carrying his child.

And the question? Well.seeign as I was talking about stockings - tell me - do you still have one - for yourself,  for the children? And if you do, what is it like - do you have a commercially made one or is it like the one I made for my son years ago  - a plain white pillowcase that I decorated with pictures and his name done in fabric paints?
And what sor of  things do you put into the stocking (sorry - perhaps I should say  - what does Santa put in the stocking?)

As you see, even dear old Sid the Cat always had a big stocking that he hoped Santa would fill with treats.


Laney4 said...

Just realized I read CORDERO'S FORCED BRIDE, and you also have a book called THE ITALIAN'S FORCED BRIDE. Are there any more forced brides lurking, LOL?

My daughter was given a red stocking with a cat's head on top, so she prefers that one. My son's is red with a dog's head on it. My husband and I have plain red ones, except mine has some sparkle on it to differentiate.

I have a tiny one on the tree saying my son's "First Christmas". It has the glued-on glitter and is handmade.

My parents used to put oranges in our socks every year. (I never ate them, though!) I put in funky pens, chocolate bars, socks, hankies, hair accessories, etc. My adult kids now add their own contributions - which are basically things that fit and are not really expensive. I've found Sudoku and Kakuro puzzles in mine, as well as a book or two through the years....

chey said...

We still have and use our homemade red, green and white granny square stockings. We always have a mandarin orange and nuts in the shell in them. The rest is usually gag gifts and maybe a lottery ticket.

Summer said...

My brothers and I still have the same stockings from when we were kids, store bought ones that our mom stitched our names onto, and our father still has his from when he was a kid, too.

Ever since I learned to read, I've received a Christmas Archie comic in my stocking, which I still enjoy even if I am a little old for them now.

Debby said...

I do still do stockings for my daughters. They like them so much and ask me for them. I tried to skip it one year and they rebelled.
debby236 at gmail dot com

Colleen C. said...

My family still does stockings... I have mine from when I was a kid... it has this really cute Christmas mouse head on it and still plays music after all these years... we always personalize each stocking... our pets get their own hung too... Santa loves to place little goodies in them.

TashNz said...

Hi Kate. My Mum made my girls stockings when they were little and we still use them. They're in the shape of a pillowcase. The material is some sort of forest green with sparkly bits and it's a christmas pattern. We put in lollies and stuff from a shop we have in NZ called the Two Dollar shop (cheap junky stuff). My kids love em :D

Carol said...

I don't have kids of my own, but I go to my sisters every year for Christmas. She always has a stocking for everyone who comes on Christmas morning. Its usually about 10 stocking in total. They are large bought stockings that have mostly been in the family for years. My sister then buys all sorts of useful odds and ends like body wash, body lotion, books, lip balm, chocolats, etc. Its always fun watching each person go through his or her stocking to see what they got. I don't know how she does it, but its always fun.

Rachael Thomas said...

Hi Kate,
My children sixteen and thirteen still have stockings and it's as much fun filling them as it was when they were small!
With a recent loss in our family too I can relate completely to your feelings.

Kaelee said...

Hi Kate ~ I still get a stocking at my sister's place on Boxing Day. I'm just not sure how this Boxing Day will be as her husband is not well. With her 9 grand kids and her five kids and their partners, my husband and I, there will be 23 stockings sitting on the sofas.

Mary Preston said...

I made the stockings that my children used. They are past the age of Santa Claus, but not too old for the wonder, love & joy of Christmas. We now put all our gifts under the Christmas Tree. They do have small stockings that go on the tree & I put a treat in, for them to find.

Maria said...

Hello Kate,

I'm not commenting to go in the draw as I've been a winner already (I won "Claimed by the Sicilian" for my friend and as we borrow books from each other I'll surely get to read it ultimately). I just like to join in the conversation.

I have some Christmas stockings from Ireland and I put them up on Christmas Eve and put treats in them for the children. Only the youngest (aged 8) believes in Santa now and even he's not sure. But the kids love to get into the spirit of things, whether Santa exists or not.

It's a good idea at Christmas though, to keep in mind people for whom the celebration will be tinged with sadness and a sense of loss. Hopefully, you and your family will get great comfort and consolation from your lovely Christmas memories of Joy, your lovely mother-in-law.

Maria said...
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Maria said...
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Alison said...

My husband had a stocking when he was younger - an actual specially for Christmas stocking with his name on it, which he's kept. We got stockings too, but they were one of my father's socks each, with a coin, a satsuma, some sweets and little trinkets or bubble mixture in them.

Lois said...

Well, I have a few stockings under the tree that are used as decoration now... some years they get filled, most of the time not...

But my kitty named Kitty had her own, with her picture in it that did get filled... we had to put her to sleep back in March, a week after the 14th anniversary of us getting her (we never knew her birthday, so we called it her birthday anyway - she was around 2 when we adopted her, so she was around 16 this year)... and well, I just couldn't not put it out still. It was still tough to do that even this many months past, but well, miss that little stinker. :)


Julie said...

We don't have stockings, but the cats all have one. They have new ones this year which have a space to slot their photos in, with the words "Santa I've been purrfect"! They'll get food treats in them.

Jayne Hoogenberk said...

Kate you have to submit Sid to Fat Cats in Santa Hats!!

Harlequin Books is creating a book that celebrates all that is chubby & cheery about the holiday season – and we want your best cat portraits!
Submit a high resolution photo of your cat doing or wearing something festive, and your furry friend might appear in print in a book to be distributed nationwide

Send your submissions by Jan 15 2012 to:
fatcats@harlequin.ca or by snail mail Cat Photos c/o Harlequin, 233 Broadway, Suite 1001, NY, NY 10279.


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