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Hello, happy holidays and welcome to our hop. This week’s challenge comes from the wonderful Jenna Da Sie:

Do you have any holiday plans? Do you like to go on vacation or stay at home?

This year we are moving to Florida right after New Year’s. So now we are pretty much living out of boxes and our furniture has dwindled to a few chairs, a couch and a bed. Everything else is at the new house, waiting.

So that means no decorations, no tree. But that’s okay because we have so much to look forward to. No more snow or temperatures below 32 degrees; we even have a palm tree in the backyard and I’m going to plant a lemon tree. I am pretty excited. I can’t wait to sit out in the sunshine and read and write and be warm.

But that doesn’t mean we don’t have holiday spirit. Christmas is about doing for others and no matter where we are, we are still celebrating the essence of the holiday. And remembering what the season is about all year long.

So, wish us luck as we finish packing and leave here for warmer climes.

Happy Christmas! Oh, and look what just released!!!!

Grave Importance

Now, let’s pop over to the incredible Jenna Da Sie and find out what she has planned…

http://jennadasie.com

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Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy holidays and welcome to our hop. So glad you’re here!

This week’s challenge comes from the incredible Brenda Margriet:

I’m not much of a baker, except for at Christmas. Share your favourite holiday treat recipe!

This is a recipe I only make at Christmas, but the recipients tell me they look forward to it every year. It’s very rich, so cut into small pieces.

Kahlua Fudge

1-1/3 cups granulated sugar

1 jar (7 oz.) marshmallow crème

2/3 cup evaporated milk

¼ cup butter

¼ cup Kahlua

¼ tsp. salt

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate pieces

1 cup milk chocolate pieces

2/3 cup chopped nuts (optional)

1 tsp. vanilla

Line 8-inch square baking pan with foil. In 2-qt saucepan combine sugar, marshmallow crème, milk, butter, Kahlua, and salt. Bring to rapid boil and stir constantly (or it will burn) for 5 minutes. It has to boil for the entire 5 minutes or it will not set. Remove from heat. Add all chocolate and stir until melted. Add nuts (if desired) and vanilla. Pour into prepared pan and refrigerate until firm. Enjoy!

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Now let’s go see what the amazing Dani Jace bakes at this time of year.

http://www.danijace.com/blog

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy Tuesday! I hope your Thanksgiving filled both your tummies and your hearts.

Thanks for joining us! I came up with this week’s challenge:

What is your favorite holiday movie? Book?

I have to admit, it’s a hard choice. I do love the Hallmark movies and watch them every year. And look forward to the new ones. But one movie stands out as my all-time favorite:  “Love Actually”.

For me it has everything: humor, pathos, unexpected love and lots of surprises. The characters each face their own challenges and there is always enough laughter to counterbalance the disappointments. It is a wonderfully crafted movie! And it always puts me in the spirit. I suppose it’s because it isn’t filled with predicable sentimentality and it’s definitely not traditional. Not all the characters have happy endings, and that makes it more real for me. Because, although I would love to believe there is always a ‘happily ever after’, sometimes life doesn’t turn out that way. But the nice part is, I am left with the impression that the people who don’t get what they wanted have something waiting around the corner. And hope is what gets us through the day!

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Now let’s hop ever and see what the fabulous Brenda Margriet watches or reads this time of year…

http://www.brendamargriet.com/blog

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Hello and happy Tuesday. So happy you could join us! I came up with this week’s challenge:

With Thanksgiving coming up this week…What are you most grateful for?

There is so much to be grateful for. I am truly blessed. I have a warm house, plenty of clothes, as much food as I need (and more). I am strong and getting healthy after recovering from pneumonia. I have a wonderful, loving husband and a great dog (who never left me when I was in bed sick). I have freedom to go where I wish, when I wish.

There are so many who are not so lucky. Too many are hungry, cold in the winter, unable to get what they need to survive. Lady Gaga is talking about kindness and it cannot be over-rated. We need to remember, not just during the holidays, but every day, how much we have. And share with others. Kindness seems to have been forgotten so often these days. Road rage, shootings, abuse — it needs to change. And if each of us would simply be kind to others, it might get better. Maybe it wouldn’t stop the crazies, but it would certainly help get us through the day.

Be grateful every day, be kind. That is the most important part of Thanksgiving.

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Now let’s hop over and see what the amazing Jenna Da Sie is grateful for…

http://jennadasie.com

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Happy Tuesday and thanks for joining us. So happy you’re here! This week’s challenge comes from the remarkable Jenna Da Sie:

Write a 500 word or less flash fiction using the words TURKEY, RAIN, and TRAMPOLINE.

The old trampoline squatted forlornly in the backyard, surrounded by dirt and brown grass. It had been the only light in the darkness of a sad childhood. At least the rain had stopped, but that didn’t improve Kira’s mood. She stepped away from the window and looked around the old house. So empty it almost echoed. Everyone was gone now and it was time to clean up and move on. It wasn’t as if she’d be leaving behind any good memories. Holidays in this house had always been something to get through, not anticipate with pleasure. She wouldn’t miss this place.

Today being Thanksgiving didn’t help. The idea of cooking a turkey was laughable. So she could sit alone and eat it? No thanks.

A walk might help clear the cobwebs and air out the melancholy. She grabbed her coat and walked down the path to the sidewalk.

Coming toward her was the handsome neighbor from across the street. John? No, Jason. She had seen him once when she came to make the arrangements  for her mother, who had deteriorated to the point of needing full-time care.

Jason was walking the cutest golden retriever, the pup’s tongue lolling out in delight. As the man approached her, he smiled.

“Kira, right?”

She nodded.

“I heard about your mother. So sorry for your loss.”

“Thanks. And who is this gorgeous creature?” She knelt down to pet the dog’s soft fur and receive a doggy kiss in return.

“This is Sophie.” He chewed his lower lip. “Um, Happy Thanksgiving?”

She stood and smiled. “Yes. To you, as well.”

“Do you have plans? I mean, my house is full of loud, obnoxious, loving friends and family and we could always use one more.”

Kira was taken aback by his kindness. “Thank you, but I couldn’t intrude.”

“You wouldn’t be. I would love having someone new to talk to. I’ve heard all the old family stories so many times, I could recite them in my sleep.” He held out his hand, palm up. “Please. I would consider it a personal favor.”

The thought of a real Thanksgiving, with lots of people and family (even if it wasn’t her own) was something she had longed for all her life. And here was this very good looking man with stunning blue eyes asking her to join them.

And it wasn’t even Christmas yet.

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Now let’s hop over to the fantastic Jenna Da Sie and see what she’s come up with…

http://jennadasie.com

Romance Writers Weekly

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Happy Tuesday and thanks for being here. This week’s challenge comes from the amazing Brenda Margriet:

Pick a day or event in your life (ordinary or unusual) and describe it from a different point of view. This could be another person who was there, a stranger watching from a far, a pet – whatever you like.

Hi. My name is Jakita. Yes, that’s a picture of me helping with research. I am not sure what that means.

Jakita doing research

I spend my days with my human mommy, Leslie, and I have some questions. Maybe you can help with the answers. First, I know she sits at a desk and taps out things on a flat black board. She tells me she is writing books. Okay. What’s a book?

Anyway, what is this thing about fur? I wear the same fur every day and it suits me just fine. It’s warm in the winter and cool in the summer. But Mom and Dad change their fur every day and sometimes take it off completely. What is the deal with that?

Then there’s how they eat. Why would you take tiny bites of food off a small metal thing when you can stick your whole head in a bowl and get a mouthful? Speaking of…why do I have to have dry stuff, while their food smells delicious? Mom says I am not allowed human food, because it makes me sick. I think I should keep trying to eat some just to make sure.

And there’s the potty thing. I need an indoor potty. When they have to go, they go into a little room inside the house and sit down. Me? I have to brave wind and rain and cold and it just seems so unfair, don’t you think?

Also, what is the point of taking a shower every day? Do they not know that means you have to get water all over your body? Why would anyone choose to get all wet and soapy if they had a choice?

Nighttime is my favorite, though. I curl up on the bed and snuggle against my mom. Sometimes she tries to make me move. Good luck with that. I can make my 26 pounds feel like a hundred when I refuse to give ground. Hahaha.

Overall, life here is good. I love my mom and dad and my tummy is full and so is my heart.

Oh and, truth be told, I pretty sure I really write mom’s books. (What’s a book, again?) She does the typing since I don’t have thumbs and my fingers have a problem on those little black keys. But, I’ll let her take the credit since I love her.

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Now, let’s hop over to the wonderful Brenda Margriet for a different point of view.

http://brendamargriet.com/blog

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Hello and welcome to our weekly blog. Really happy you’re here! This week’s challenge comes from the fabulous Dani Jace:

One day away from Halloween. Have you ever seen a ghost or witnessed something paranormal? Received a sign from a loved one in the hereafter? If not, share the oddest thing that’s ever happened to you that you can’t explain.

I always wanted to be psychic. I thought it would be amazing to communicate with spirits. Well, that is until I saw “Ghost” and realized that it can also be a curse (just ask Oda Mae). Because I am pretty sure once that door is open, it might be pretty hard to close it. Or control it.

I had a psychic reading in New Orleans years ago, and he was so right on. Everything he predicated came true. It was impressive. But again, does that talent consume him?

My only real paranormal experience is this: I have had a few prophetic dreams.  And I mean down to virtually every last detail. It has happened rarely, but it really freaked me out. I had confided in a friend about one of the dreams, thinking there was some hidden meaning, before it actually came true. And when it did come true, my friend was as unnerved as I was.

My conclusion is that there are so many things we do not understand. ‘Where’ and ‘why’ and ‘how’ are constant questions and sometimes the answers have no ‘logical’ explanation. We just need to accept that the world of knowledge is a vast ocean and all we have is a teacup.

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Now it’s time for the incredible Dani Jace to reveal her paranormal adventures.

http://www.danijace.com/blog