Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Is Simply Surviving Christmas Your Goal?

 The Down Side of Christmas Holidays


When my girls were teens, they worked at a movie theater. One year both of them worked on Christmas Day. I remember they were surprised by the number of people, one by one, that came to the movies that day.

Some folks don't "do" Christmas for valid religious reasons. We know that. But there are a lot of people who might like to celebrate on that day but lack funds, housing, family or friends. There are those whose memories of Christmas aren't great. Or maybe they suffer from depression and lack the spirit that is supposed to come with the season.


For those that find it hard to get into the swing of parties or dinners or sleigh rides, taking a low-key approach may help. Perhaps it is the pressure of finding just the right gifts, or worrying about paying for the gifts that causes stress. Maybe it is undercurrents of tension between family members.

Our family has a simplified set up. All the little ones get gifts. They are fresh to the traditions and love every minute of the holiday. The adults -  not so much. If my kids exchange gifts with their spouses - good on them. For me and my hubby, old memories and stresses sneak into the season. It's great when the grandkids are coming or we go there. But for us alone at home, we are content to NOT exchange gifts, to eat an easy, tasty meal and to kick back with a movie and a glass of vino. And we avoid the stores, except for groceries, during November and December. That's it.

We give each other the gift of NOT having to shop or to create a perfect Turkey dinner.

Bottom line:

 Figure out what you can handle and politely say 'no thanks' to the rest. Find ways to keep the gifts joyful, not necessarily expensive. Make them, give gift cards, hand out certificates for babysitting, house cleaning or some other task that will help someone. Try a less stressful new tradition. Frozen pizza might just do the trick for you and yours. Lower expectations do not mean lesser ones. Just different ones.


Here are some links to sites that list ways to take some of the stress out of Christmas.
Health Newsletters
Psychology Today

As you go into the new year, here are some suggestions to live by.


And a very
 MERRY CHRISTMAS, HAPPY HOLIDAY OR A GREAT WHATEVER-YOU-CELEBRATE
 to you and yours.




Wednesday, December 9, 2015

4 Christmas Touchstones


 We all have touchstones that summon memories for us. Here are four Christmas ones that touch me instantly.


1) Presents under the Christmas Tree. This goes hand in hand with # 2. I also remember our dog, Nigel,who one year ate a pound of chocolate and another year half a "round" of cheese from the factory.


 2) Little kids

The thrilled response of the very young who love Grandma's homemade mitts. Children are the heart of the family when it comes to this time of year. Their anticipation is electric and their fun contagious.



3)
The Grandparents ( and great grandparents)  This was the last Christmas my Mom and Dad had together. Dad had dementia and memory issues but remembered to stay in his "Santa" role for the whole party. Mom rewarded him with a kiss.


  4) The memories of Christmas past.

 This one is me with my younger brother and our Mom. We got one big gift (mine was the doll and the cradle,) a new pair of pj's and a filled stocking. The stocking had a quarter in the toe, then an apple, an orange, some barley candy on a stick and a book of Lifesavers. 





 

From other relatives we got socks, mitts and books... the books were the best gifts for me.



What are your Christmas 'touchstones?'




Wednesday, November 25, 2015

What one Christmas gift is the greatest?

Welcomes back to Carol Falls, Vermont, with this fifth book from the Frost Family Christmas/Frost Family & Friends series.  



When a single mom is arrested for arson, the only man who can prove her innocence, and reunite her with her young daughter in time for Christmas, is the firefighter she walked out on last year.

Meet the author, Roxy Boroughs


Visit Roxy at www.roxyboroughs.com
Before turning her attention to writing, Roxy tread the boards as an actress, appearing on stage, film and TV.


Look for her romantic comedy CRAZY FOR COWBOY, and her suspense titles, the award winning A STRANGER’S TOUCH, and the follow-up novella A STRANGER’S KISS. As well as the popular FROST FAMILY & FRIENDS Christmas series, which combines sweet romance with cozy mystery.


If you didn't like writing books, what would you do for a living?


 I’ve had all sorts of jobs.
I studied drama at university and have appeared in TV shows, commercials and movies. I’ve been a historical interpreter and dressed up as characters from the past for tourists. I’ve been a radio announcer, done voice-overs, taught drama, worked in a factory, waited tables…I’ve even managed a retail store.

BUT, if I were going to choose something completely different, I’d either become a filmmaker (screenwriting and directing) or a psychologist. Hey, maybe I’d push Dr. Phil out and have my own TV show—Dr. Roxy.

Do you read your reviews? Do you respond to them, good or bad? Do you have any advice on how to deal with the bad?

I definitely read reviews. And I don’t respond to them, other than to say thank you, regardless of whether the reviewer liked or disliked the book. It’s one person’s perspective, so you must keep that in mind. Of course, I want everyone to LOVE my books. But that’s not realistic. Not everyone likes broccoli, right? Heck, I know some people who don’t like chocolate. Go figure!

Do you drink? Smoke?
I love a good wine. Preferably red with a great big taste.

I’ve smoked on stage, but never in real life. I was ill as a child—had pneumonia a few times—and the doctor warned that I should never smoke. Or even be around cigarette smoke. After hearing that, my dad went cold turkey. That wonderful man passed away in 2004. I miss him every day.
Do you have any scars? What are they from? 

Scars are a part of life, and I have a few. Of the two largest, one is across my lower belly—the operation that cured me of that childhood illness. The other is on my left breast and it’s from a lumpectomy. Yes, I’m a cancer survivor!
 
The Greatest Gift 



Heather Connolly has done some questionable things in the past. But it was all to regain custody of her six-year-old daughter, Lottie. Finally together, Heather is now planning the perfect Christmas for her little girl.

Until police officers show up at the door and arrest Heather for robbery and arson.

Only one man can help prove her innocence. It’s Zack Jones, a volunteer firefighter...and the man she ran out on after their first and only night together.

Can he give her The Greatest Gift this Christmas, and once again unite Heather with her daughter? Or will Heather’s past keep her from Lottie forever?

This story is a stand-alone sweet romance/cozy mystery. Series readers will enjoy catching up with town news and the latest happenings of the Frost Family...including a wedding.


Find The Greatest Gift at these links.

Available at the following locations as of December 1, 2015.

Other books in the series: