A Little Christmas Cheer

Oh my goodness! I feel like I’ve been stuck on some amusement park ride all year. You know. The one that yanks you high in the air then drops you like a sack of potatoes and sometimes does some wild loops on the way down. But I did it. I released five books and I’m pretty proud of that. Still, I’m saying lots of prayers for an easier 2018. Not complaining. Just old and worn out.

So, Christmas is almost upon us with just a few more days left. I don’t do a lot of decorating. My tree is in the attic and that’s where it’ll stay. (I’m referencing the old and worn out part here.)

For the last 30 years no matter what, I’ve always put my Christmas angel out. She’s getting a bit frazzled (like me) but still looking beautiful.

I also decorate my dining table. This year, it’s candles and poinsettia. I lit the candles the other night when I ate and took a picture. It brightened up my spirits and put a warm glow in my heart.

I thought my French doors leading to my patio needed some cheer too. No one will see it but me but I kinda like it. It looks nice. By the way, that wreath is old too.

To celebrate this season, I’m offering two copies of CHRISTMAS IN A COWBOY’S ARMS. Six heart-warming stories by six very talented writers—including our own Margaret Brownley.

My story, The Christmas Stranger—

Alone, in a blizzard, no shelter in sight, Hank Destry pushes in all his chips and comes up losing. Half-frozen and unable to go any farther, he falls from the saddle into a snowbank. Spinster Sidalee King is returning from visiting a sick friend and sees a barking dog. The pet leads her to Hank. She digs him from the snow and takes him to her home on the Lone Star Ranch.

Her job in the mercantile represents the sum total of her life but the drifter’s plight touches her. Everyone needs someone to spend Christmas with. Could he be Miss Mamie’s lost son that she speaks of? And what are the ugly rocks Miss Mamie doles out as payment for kindnesses? Mystery and love abound this Christmas season as two lonely people receive an unexpected gift.

To enter the drawing for one of two copies of this anthology, tell me if you have a tradition at your house. Or just talk about anything. That’ll work.

Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays! Feliz Navidad! Happy Hanukah!

God be with you all.

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Here in the Texas Panhandle, we do love our cowboys. There's just something about a man in a Stetson and jeans that makes my heart beat faster. I'm not much of a cook but I love to do genealogy and I'm a bit of a rock hound. I'm also a NY Times & USA Today bestselling author of historical western romance. You can contact me through my website and I'd love to connect with you on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more. HAPPY READING!

56 thoughts on “A Little Christmas Cheer”

  1. Hi Linda,

    The candles are beautiful and rustic looking.

    It wouldn’t be the holidays without a visit to Walt Disney World. They have the most amazing decorations, lights in gingerbread house. I’m fortunate to live two hours away.

    • Good morning, Alisa…….How fortunate that you live so close to Walt Disney World! That would be so much fun. Can you believe I’ve never been there or to Disneyland in California? Nope. Probably the only only one on the planet. We just never had the money when my kids were growing up. Maybe one day I’ll make it. Thank you for the comment about my candles.

      Hugs and Merry Christmas!

  2. Several years ago one of our customers brought us tamales that his family had made with the pig they bought from us. Since then other customers have also brought us tamales for Christmas. Now Christmas eve supper has to be tamales even though we have no Mexican heritage in our family. We still have German lebkuchen, too.

    • Good morning, Alice…….Tamales for Christmas Eve sounds good to me! It’s strange how traditions get started. My youngest daughter always fixes spaghetti. Never varies. I would love that German lebkuchen. Yummy! Desserts are my thing.

      Hugs and Merry Christmas!

  3. Your angel is lovely.

    I like to bake cookies with the kids, I have a collection of Santa’s and snowmen I display, and I have a special angel ornament on my tree. We always put a star on top of the tree, and I hang a Moravian star outside.

    • Good morning, Denise……..Baking cookies with the kids makes a special bond I think. That’s something they’ll always remember and probably do with their kids. I would love to see your Christmas decorations. Ahhh, we both love angels. If I still did my tree I’d put a star on top. I think I still have the one we used somewhere along with the ornaments my kids made in school. Those tugged at my heart.

      Much love and hugs. Merry Christmas!

  4. Our Christmas is Family time together. Share a meal of favorite dishes made with love from handed down recipes. A gift exchange grew too large, so the “kids” all get some gifts. The adults participate in a Chinese exchange with a monetary limit. The pets get included with gifts as well.
    The tree has old memorable and new ornaments.

    • Hi Jerri!!……I’m so glad you see you. I love your traditions. Yes, gift exchanges do get too big when families grow. I love those Chinese gift exchanges. They are so much fun…as long as no one gets mad. One disgruntled person can ruin the fun. But I’ve always enjoyed those and the riotous laughter. Of course, the pets get gifts! They’re just four-legged people. 🙂

      Thank you for the lovely Christmas card!

      Love you, lady. Merry Christmas!

    • Good morning, Caryl…….I love those candlelight services. Sitting in a dim church lit only by candles just soothes your soul and brings you closer to God. It’s a very profound experience. I hope you fully enjoy it.

      Merry Christmas!

  5. One of my favorite traditions is going to choose a Christmas tree. Once the kids have picked it out, we come home and then my husband will put the lights on the tree. After they, we let the kids put the ornaments on it. I love hearing them talk about the different ornaments. We have a wonderful time doing this. The kids and I also love to bake cookies together. We have several baking days. We love to be able to share the cookies with others. Merry Christmas!

    • Good morning, Joy……….Families used to never put a tree up until Christmas Eve but now so many do it on Thanksgiving Day. I love that tradition though of waiting and doing it as a group. It does make it so special and talking about the different ornaments tugs at the heart. You’re such a great mom. Cookie making can really create deep bonds.

      May you have a blessed and memorable Christmas!

  6. Linda- good morning your decorations are beautiful. This year I’m not doing much decorating as I’m going home to Texas and w/ Work just decided not too.
    But my mom always does theme trees which are spectacular, so I’m excited to see what she created this year. Love you and wishing you a huge 2018, but hope it’s at a slower pace that doesn’t wear you out.

    • Good morning, Miss Tonya…….I’m sure the decorations you put out are very lovely and filled with meaning for you. Don’t blame you on skipping the tree. Makes no sense to do that and it’s added work. You still have the same Christmas spirit in your heart. I feel your excitement at going home to Stephenville! I’ll bet your mom’s tree will knock your socks off. You do love the suspense. You’ll have to tell me about it when you get back.

      Thank you so much for the horse painting! I’ll always treasure it.

      Wishing you a blessed and very happy Christmas!

  7. We have an antique table top Christmas tree that’s light blue and white and has blue and white and hair that it’s sits on that looks like snow drifts. I know it’s at least from the 50’s. It’s at my parents. We go all out decorating at my parents starting Thanksgiving. We box up all the Decor and kicknacks around my parents house and get out lots and lots of Christmas decorations and decorate inside and out. It’s a Christmas wonderland at my parents. For several years we haven’t decorated at my house after decorating m6 parents. We spend out holidays there anyway.

    • Good morning, Stephanie…….My fellow warrior. You know, that’s such a special thing to do Christmas at your parents. And with our MS, we don’t have a lot of extra energy. I love your tradition of decorating there and making it a Christmas wonderland. Oh, that tree that you’ve had for so long sounds gorgeous with the snowdrifts on it made by the angel hair.

      Wishing you a blessed and very memorable Christmas!

    • Good morning, Debra………I’m so happy to see you. Your tree tradition with the pickle ornament….I sense a story there. But it surely has some sentiment attached as well as the special present. You’ll have a great time.

      Wishing you a blessed and very Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Janine………..Thank you for your compliment. It sounds like you’re as tired as I am. Give yourself a break and be kind to yourself always. Nothing wrong with that.

      Much love and hugs. Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Estella……..Thanks for liking my angel. She’s really holding up well and watching over me. 🙂 Christmas should be fun and no pressure so you have a great one, no matter what you do.

      Blessings and hugs!

  8. Hello Linda! I’m tired this year also and am not doing anything more than putting up trees and stockings. My daughter even asked if we could just leave our trees with lights, no ornaments. Bless that sweet child, yes we can!! Traditions are only watching Christmas movies in our pajamas.

    • Hi Susan P………Sometimes we just have to take a step back and be kind to ourselves. Celebrate the way you want with no pressure and no guilt. I certainly am. I love trees with only lights. There’s something about simple. Enjoy those Christmas movies!

      Wishing you a blessed and very Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Pam……Well, you know that expression “Rode hard and put up wet?” That’s how I feel these days. I’m very grateful for the rest and an easier 2018.

      Wishing you a blessed and very Merry Christmas, my friend!

  9. You sound like me old and worn out. I didn’t get my Christmas tree out either. MY husband brought some kind of pine bush home from Walmart in a pot and I through some decoration on it and that is my tree. I put a little wreath on the door and set out Elfs and that is my decorations this year. I am just not getting into the Christmas Sprit this year and I am so ready for spring.

    • Hi Quilt Lady…….That Christmas bush sounds lovely and I’m sure it looks beautiful with decorations on it. I got one of those one year and it worked great. Plus, you get to have it afterward. No wasted money. Bless your husband! Maybe he sensed your tiredness and wanted to make it easier for you. We’re certainly allowed. Be kind to yourself is my motto.

      Blessings to your and your husband this Christmas!

  10. I love the lights of Christmas si I try to have as many as possible inside. Small white lights on our tree, 2 white ceramic angels with lights surrounding some white Nativity scene figurines and a Christmas village that shines brightly.
    Merry Christmas & Blessings!

    • Hi Connie……Lights sure make everything brighter. And they put cheer in your heart so put as many as you wish and soak up the holiday.

      Blessings to your and your family. Merry Christmas!

  11. Linda – I just started your collection. I’m reading Leigh’s story now, but can’t wait to move on to yours! If only there weren’t so many non-reading items on my to-do list. Oh, well. I’ll just savor it over the entire holiday. 🙂

    • Hi Karen……..Thank you for picking up a copy of Christmas in a Cowboy’s Arms. I think each story is special and will fill your heart with warmth. Enjoy them all.

      Blessings to you and your family. Merry Christmas!

  12. Linda, congratulations on 2017! WOW–what a great year, even though your description made me laugh. YOU DID IT! I put a tree up every year–the only year I didn’t put up my big tree was in 2014 because my sister and I went on a cruise and I got home on Dec. 23–so there was no time before or after–I had to settle for a small little 2 ft. tree. But this year, I fear it’s going to be the same way. I did buy a new centerpiece before Thanksgiving — first new Christmas decoration I’ve bought in a while–and I love it–it’s got a place for 3 candles and it is really beautiful. But I think this year I’m going to do well to just get the basics (shopping, wrapping and mailing) done.

    I hope you have a wonderful Christmas, and that 2018 is another fantastic year for you!

    • Hi Cheryl P……..Like I told Pam, I feel like I’ve been rode hard and put up wet. I really am exhausted. I didn’t mention that I also turned in two books this year in the middle of the madness. You know, the size of the tree is unimportant. Just celebrate the way you feel like it. Your new centerpiece sounds gorgeous. Yes, just focus on the basics and let everything go. No pressure. Enjoy it.

      Much love and great big Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Anne……I’m coming to your house! That apple cake and latkes sounds WONDERFUL! My family doesn’t want cake at Christmas-just pie.

      Blessings and Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Minna……It’s so good to see you. I love learning of your traditions. That sounds just beautiful. Few people over here cut down their tree anymore. We’re a bit lazy or have developed allergies to them. And to hear a declaration of peace would thrill my soul. The sound of discord is drowning out peace.

      Wishing you only the best now and always. Happy Holidays!

    • Hi Kim…….Oh my goodness! A move would not be my idea of fun at Christmas. I don’t envy you one bit. I hope it goes well and you’ll soon be settled in your new home. Maybe you can find time for a little celebration on Christmas Day.

      Sending love, some brawny movers and Merry Christmas!

  13. Wonderful decorations!!! We have a bunch we put out each year and seem to keep adding, LOL… Wishing you a wonderful holiday season!!! 🙂

  14. Linda, your Christmas angel is lovely! Thanks for sharing pictures of your decorations.

    I have collected Christmas ornaments for years, so decorating our tree is a trip down memory lane.

    By the way, I loved TO MARRY A TEXAS OUTLAW! I am hoping that I will see Tally and Clay in a future book. (hint, hint)

    • Hi Cheryl C……….I enjoyed sharing pictures of my decorations. I agree about those Christmas decorations. I still have those from when my kids were in elementary school and I treasure each thing they made. Have fun taking that trip down memory lane.

      Thank you so much for liking To Marry a Texas Outlaw! That thrills my heart. Yes, you will indeed get Tally Shannon and Clay Colby in Book #1 of my new series and I think you’re going to love it. Luke and Josie also play a big role in this story. Houston also makes an appearance. We’re not done with these Legend men!

      Blessings to you and your family and Merry Christmas!

  15. Loved your Christmas story, and I love that angel. Very unique even if it is old. Thanks for sharing. I like lighting candles for evening meals during December too, but I live with two boys and a hubby, who don’t really appreciate it as much as I do. It’s fun doing stuff just for your own soul even if nobody sees it. Merry Christmas!

    • Hi Natalie…….Thanks for coming and for the compliment for my angel. Each year I wrap her carefully and hope to make her last one more Christmas. You made me laugh talking about eating dinner/supper by candlelight. LOL I can just see your hubby and sons now. They’d be asking if you paid the electric bill. So funny. I’m glad you enjoyed my Christmas story. That’s so sweet of you to say.

      Love and hugs! Merry Christmas!

  16. Hi Linda! Like others I love your Christmas Angel. And five books in one year! That’s just amazing. Congratulations to you and a Big Hooray for the rest of us. Besides a Merry Christmas I also wish you a peaceful and restful one too. Having said that, I feel like we all got a Christmas present from you in your answer to cheryl c. when you talked about your new series and the appearances made by The Legend Men. God Bless and Merry Christmas, Linda.

    • Hi Eliza…….I’m so glad you stopped by. Yes, this new series will have lots of return characters in it. Dr. Mary has moved to Texas (remember her from Houston’s book?) The women of Deliverance Canyon. Clay Colby and Tally Shannon and lots more. Plus new ones too. I’m wishing you a return to good health, much happiness, and prosperity.

      Merry Christmas to you and your son!

  17. 5 books this year is a major accomplishment. That’s e wonderful. The angel is looking great for being around awhile . I love Angels and Santa’s. I have an Ange that looks a lot like yours but mine looks her age now. I always decorate our living room
    like Santa’s workshop. The grandkids love it. It’s the first think they see when they walk in. The best is the large Christmas dinner with whole family. It’s once a year when everyone can come together. It’s a wonderful feeling.
    Carol Luciano

    • Hi Carol…..Yes, I almost killed myself but not quite. I still have lots of stories in me. How delightful that you turn your living room into Santa’s workshop! I’ve never heard of anyone doing that. What a great tradition. And to have everyone gathered around the dinner table just thrills your soul. That is the best.

      Merry Christmas!

  18. I hope that cowboy doesn’t lose his fingers and toes to frost bite! One of my favorite holiday traditions is setting out our advent wreath to mark the four sundays preceding Christmas.

  19. Our tradition since we became grandparents, is to be at the grands house Christmas morning to see their precious faces when they spy what Santa left. Priceless!

    • Hi Melanie……Oh what fun! I agree that seeing children’s faces on Christmas morning is the best life has to offer. Mine are all big now but I still love watching other people’s. That excitement, that joy, that love fills our hearts to overflowing.

      Merry Christmas!

  20. Your decorations are lovely. Personally, I feel we should decorate for ourselves. They bring us joy and comfort. A decoration may be a bit worn, but it brings back many memories. That is the beauty of them. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas season.
    No need to enter me in the giveaway. I have already read the book and it is wonderful. A nice variety of stories. It is firmly on my keeper shelf.

    • Hi Miss Patricia……I agree about old decorations. I love the memories they bring me. I’m wishing you and your dear husband good health, much happiness, and prosperity.

      Merry Christmas!

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