Welcome Guest – Kristy McCaffrey!!!


Christmas On The American Frontier
By Kristy McCaffrey

A Christmas filled with cowboys inevitably evokes images of the Old West. Back then, the holidays were celebrated much as they are today, with holiday decorations, Santa Claus, presents, and a Christmas feast. I thought I would share some historical recollections directly from the pioneers themselves.

In 1884, Mrs. George C. Wolffarth of Estacado, Texas, reflected, “Christmas day was warm and beautiful and we had a watermelon feast on the church house lawn. Isiah Cox … had stored the melons in his cellar and they were in fine condition for the Christmas feast.”

“Now, you really must hear about my Christmas dinner!” began Evelyn Hertslet of Lake County, California, in 1885. Her holiday meal was filled with items from her native England. “The plum-pudding and mince-pies were all that could be desired, and we had also tipsy cake, Victoria sandwiches, meringues, and dessert ….”

In 1849, Catherine Haun wrote, “Although very tired of tent life many of us spent Thanksgiving and Christmas in our canvas houses. I do not remember ever having had happier holiday times. For Christmas we had grizzly bear steak for which we paid $2.50, one cabbage for $1.00 and oh horrors, some more dried apples! And for a Christmas present the Sacramento River rose very high and flooded the whole town!”

Elizabeth Le Breton Gunn, who was living in Sonora, California, in 1851, wrote this letter:

“Yesterday was Christmas Day …. We filled the stockings on Christmas Eve …. The children filled theirs. They put in wafers, pens, toothbrushes, potatoes, and gingerbread, and a little medicine …. They received cake and candies, nuts and raisins, a few pieces of gold and a little money, and, instead of books, some letters. Their father and I each wrote them letters, and better than all and quite unexpected, they found yours, and were delighted. In my stocking were a toothbrush and a nailbrush (the latter I wanted very much) and some cakes and a letter from Lewis …. We had a nice roast of pork, and I made a plum pudding. Mr. Christman gave the children some very nice presents; each of the boys a pearl handled knife with three blades, Sarah a very pretty box, and Lizzie a pair of scissors, and each a paper of macaroons.”

Englishman William Redmond Kelly visited California in 1849-50. He celebrated Christmas at a mining camp near Middle Creek. “Our dinner-table was quite a spectacle in its way in the diggings … its bear meat, venison, and bacon, its apple-pies pleasingly distributed, its Gothic columns of plain and fancy breads … the plum-pudding alone being reserved for [a] second course …”

Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote of the preparations for Christmas on the Kansas Prairie: “Ma was busy all day long, cooking good things for Christmas. She baked salt-rising bread and r’n’Injun bread, and Swedish crackers, and huge pan of baked beans, with salt pork and molasses. She baked vinegar pies and dried-apple pies, and filled a big jar with cookies, and she let Laura and Mary lick the cake spoon.” That Christmas, Laura received a shiny new tin cup, a peppermint candy, a heart-shaped cake, and a brand new penny in her stocking.

How would you like seven brand new contemporary Christmas stories set in the West this holiday season?

The weather is cold, the atmosphere is festive, and the cowboys are hot. How do you keep a cowboy at Christmas?

Don’t miss this holiday collection of modern-day cowboys and the women they love, featuring the same USA Today, Amazon Bestselling, and Award-Winning authors from “A Cowboy to Keep,” which garnered 55 reviews with an average rating of 4.5 stars.

CHRISTMAS, LIBERTY, AND THE THREE MINUTE MAN by Carra Copelin

Nashville event planner, Liberty Ann Hart, tries not to fall for a local carpenter, but his charisma is difficult to ignore, especially at Christmas and in the rustic setting of a Texas town called Mistletoe. Daniel Dylan Layman is determined to show the headstrong city woman a country life. Will a Christmas fundraiser spark a lifetime of love?

A CHRISTMAS CAROLE by Andrea Downing

Carrie Matheson is happy to start a new life at the Wyoming ranch she has inherited, but her six-year-old son wants to return to New York. As Christmas approaches and his pleas to Santa receive replies, it’s alarm bells not sleigh bells that start ringing. Tate Schrugge is amused by his new neighbor when she jogs over with some mis-delivered mail, but after she calls him Scrooge, she’s definitely not on his Christmas list. If these two can get together, it might be the Dickens of a romance.

THE PEPPERMINT TREE by Kristy McCaffrey

When an unexpected inheritance draws lawyer Skye Mallory home for the Christmas holidays, she’s surprised by a longing to set down roots in her Colorado hometown. Only one thing stands in her way—a cowboy who broke her heart in high school. Joe Carrigan has returned to the community he left years ago, ready to face his one regret in life—Skye Mallory. But this time, he won’t be so chivalrous.

THE DEVIL’S CHRISTMAS KISS by Devon McKay

Some things never change. Kristen Kelly’s hometown is still Christmas crazy. Her sister, Laney, will always need to be rescued. And Cole Lawson will never stop pestering her. The handsome

cowboy has picked right up where they left off, teasing her without mercy. And though her head tells her to run from Cole as fast as she can, her heart has a mind of its own.

SLAY BELLS by Hildie McQueen

Carmen and Jared can’t avoid the sparks that fly between them at first sight. But when a dead body surfaces at the Christmas festival, she becomes a witness and he becomes a suspect. Not exactly the recipe for a perfect match. Can they find love amidst the mayhem and sleigh bells?

THE BEST CHRISTMAS by Hebby Roman

Sofia Rossi and Gar McCulloch meet under challenging circumstances—her estranged son has been admitted to Gar’s ranch rehab-center. Sofia is a successful New York model who had an ill-advised liaison with a wealthy, married member of New York society and lost her son to her ex’s manipulation. Gar is divorced and lost his daughter to a drug overdose. When they bond together to reclaim Sofia’s son, the last thing they expect is to find redemption in each other’s arms, making this their best Christmas… ever.

COUNTING DOWN TO CHRISTMAS by Patti Sherry-Crews

Melody Evans, a professional wedding planner, views happily-ever-after endings with a skeptical eye, but she’s never lost her childlike enthusiasm for her favorite holiday—Christmas. To veterinarian rancher Leland Jennings IV, Christmas is just for kids. If he could, he’d skip the whole month of December. But he does believe there’s one woman out there for him, and he’s holding out for her. Melody revives Leland’s Christmas spirit, and he rekindles her heart.

Only 99 cents at Amazon or FREE in Kindle Unlimited

Leave a comment about what the cowboy on ‘A Christmas Cowboy To Keep’ might be bringing home for the holidays and one lucky winner will receive autographed print copies of A WEST TEXAS CHRISTMAS TRILOGY and BLUE SAGE!! Winner will be drawn tomorrow morning.

 

 

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36 Comments

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  1. Thank you for the post with the old Christmas recollections that were so very enjoyable to read.

    I believe the “Christmas Cowboy to Keep” might be bringing home a Christmas tree!

    Thank you for the contest, and Merry Christmas to you and yours.

  2. Thank you this was a beautiful blog. I believe a Cowboy would be bringing home a Christmas turkey.
    Merry Christmas to you and may 2019 be an amazing new year.

    1. How funny I chose ham! Lol

  3. Great blog! I picture a cowboy with a big old ham and him trying to keep a big ole beautiful poinsettia from getting damaged before he can get it home for the intended recipient. Wouldn’t this entire collection make an awesome Christmas gift!

  4. I love hearing about Christmas of the past. They appreciated everything they had.

  5. To loved reading this.

  6. Thank you reminding us of traditions carried out in the past in celebration of Christmas. Loved your list. For sure a cowboy will bring home his horse and a few pieces of sugar candy in his pocket.

  7. I think the cowboy would be bring home a turkey for Christmas because they all tried to have turkey if they could. They is what most of us want at Christmas. I do love me some turkey.

  8. Thank you for sharing your great post! That cowboy has candy in his saddle bag and a dainty hankie in his pocket for his special lady.

  9. Kristy, I loved this blog! How fascinating to know how simple the gifts were back then, yet how treasured. The food they prepared was so interesting. Grizzly bear steaks! I imagine paying $1.00 for a cabbage was a fortune back then.

    Good stuff! Merry Christmas, my friend!

    1. Thank you, Pam!!

  10. Before you even asked the question I noticed how neat that picture of the cowboy bringing home the tree on his horse was! So obviously he’s bringing home a tree – but I think he’d bring home some simple presents in his saddle bag or a new blanket to share. 🙂

  11. I can see him bringing home the tree and a big fat deer or Turkey. She would cook squash,potatoes from the garden, pumpkin pie. Thank you for sharing your wonderful books and stories. Merry Christmas.

  12. What a fascinating post which I enjoyed greatly. The Old West interests me very much. Cowboys are my heroes. The cowboy would be bringing home turkey for all.

  13. The cowboy is bringing a tree home. The family can enjoy the fruits of his labor. Thanks for this interesting feature and lovely giveaway.

  14. I loved hearing about all the Christmas stories! This is my favorite time of the year! I think the cowboy would bring a fresh hunted turkey, a tree being pulled behind the horse and something special and sparkling he purchased from the mercantile for the one he loves.

  15. Thanks so much for having Kristy here today, and Kristy–great post! I loved learning about the various ways Christmas was celebrated in the Old West. It has been a pleasure working with you once more.

    1. Thanks for the support, Andrea. It’s a great collection!

  16. Hi Kristy, great to have you! I always love reading about those early Christmas celebrations. They were so simple and heartwarming. Letters from home were treasured and meant more than anything. I can only imagine the loneliness. Congrats on the new book! It looks wonderful. It’s going on my list.

    1. Thank you, Linda!! I love reading the writings from back in the day. They have a flavor that’s hard to replicate.

  17. It’s amazing how those pioneers still kept Christmas under those conditions on the frontier! Great post Kristy!

    1. It certainly puts our own celebrations into perspective. 🙂

  18. I too love hearing about things in the past. Would love to read this

    book. Thank you & God bless

  19. I think he might have brought home venison (or as we call it here in Alabama deer meat) for their Christmas dinner! Or maybe ribbons or combss for his lady’s hair! Simple things meant a lot to the early settlers!!

  20. I’m loving everyone’s comments! Thanks so much for stopping by. It’s nice to take a breather from all the hustle and bustle of the holidays and reflect on what it meant to those early pioneers. Happy Holidays to all you lovely readers.

  21. I believe the cowboy would bring home oranges and penny candy for stockings. He might also bring some sugar and coffee.

  22. Well is see a tree he is pulling but I’m thinking Elk or moose meat maybe.

  23. Merry Christmas to all.

    Dreaming of a cowboy bringing home a tree so we could decorate it together. That would be a nice Christmas to me.

    Have a wonderful new year.

  24. A Christmas tree.

  25. something small and special for the stocking

  26. Thanks to everyone for a lovely day reading your comments. We’ll have a winner picked tomorrow morning. Have a great night!

  27. Thanks for a great post. I may be too late for the drawing but I believe that the cowboy will have his saddle bag filled with ribbon, vanilla and stick candy. The ribbons can be used to decorate the tree and then, after Christmas, they will come in handy in tying back his lady’s hair. The vanilla can be used for Christmas cookies but I’ve been told that a little on your neck is a very pleasant substitute for perfume and the stick candy is for both their pleasure.
    Merry Christmas!

  28. These all sound like wonderful stories. Anthologies are favorites and holiday themed ones are always enjoyable.
    The cowboy on the cover is bringing the tree home to be decorated. He is planning on a decorating party for 2 and in his pocket is the ring he plans on offering when he proposes to his sweetheart on Christmas Eve.

  29. Perhaps he’s bringing home a special ornament!

  30. He is bringing the love of his life a Christmas tree. Perhaps her first ever. Merry Christmas everybody. May God’s love and blessings cover you this Christmas and always!

  31. He is bringing the love of his life a Christmas tree. Perhaps her first ever. Merry Christmas everybody. May God’s love and blessings cover you this Christmas and always!

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