Posts Tagged ‘Christmas’

Treasured blessings of a #MerryChristmas!

Saturday, December 24th, 2016

For my husband and me, this year is a different kind of holiday season….some joyful celebrations and some sad goodbyes. As we prepared for the holidays, we heeded the advice to simplify…to focus on the true gift of Christmas.

Our downsized tree is decorated with only a few of our special ornaments.

The mantle is adorned with precious memories…..a few of the many Santas my mother lovingly painted, only one of our nativity collections (this set my father made from repurposed wood), and the clock which was our first Christmas present to each other after our wedding.

At my husband’s suggestion, I even purchased our traditional Jesus’ birthday cake at the bakery. Yes, we did simplify our decorations and traditions this year, as we prepared our hearts to celebrate the ultimate gift from God.

Christmas Day will be quiet, with church and reflecting on the miracle of Christ’s birth and all the blessings received during 2016. All will be calm and bright!

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. Luke 2:10 (KJV)

My prayer for you is that your Christmas be filled with our Lord’s treasured blessings….the LOVE of family and friends, the HOPE of our faith in Christ, and the warmth of PEACE in your heart.

Blessings and merry Christmas,

Sherida

A special Christmas #TuesdayTea celebration!

Tuesday, December 22nd, 2015

Please join me for a celebration of the Christmas season while we enjoy a festive treat of Cranberry Apricot Scones. I’m reviewing A Heart Full of Christmas, a collection of contemporary novellas all filled with the heartwarming joy of romance and happily-ever-after endings. These stories are written by five of the Seekers of Seekerville.

Christmas Tea

Christmas Tea

MY REVIEW:
A Heart Full of Christmas, Contemporary Inspirational Holiday Romance CollectionA Heart Full of Christmas, Contemporary Inspirational Holiday Romance Collection by Debby Giusti
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

SPARKLING CHRISTMAS STORY COLLECTION!

A Heart Full of Christmas is a sparkling collection of five inspirational romances written by five of my favorite authors. Each story has a different quality. The charming angel ornament on the cover is a precious hint of what is inside, as all the novellas feature the touch of a angel.

A MIRACLE FOR CHRISTMAS, by Debby Giusti, is an exciting love story of overcoming fears and focusing on the future. Watch for Gabriel, a secondary character, who is the kind of guy we all need for comfort during stressful situations.

HOME TO HIS HEART, by Ruth Logan Herne, is a story about former high school acquaintances who must confront difficult childhood memories. A relationship develops between them as his rambunctious and adorable twin boys bring them together. Ruthy knows how to “write” kiddos!

UNDER THE MISTLETOE, by Tina Radcliffe, has the flavor of my favorite Christmas tale. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but this is a charming novella, filled with trademark Tina humor. I love this story. And a recipe for gingerbread cookies makes for a perfect treat-filled ending.

HOLIDAY HOMECOMING, by Sandra Leesmith, starts with a sweet pre-Christmas birthday gathering of old friends. At the suggestion of a special waitress, they reminisce about first loves. A delightful holiday celebration and romance with Southern California style.

SNOWFLAKE KISSES, by Missy Tippens, is a warm small town romance set in High Hope, Georgia. A lovely romance evolves as a family secret comes to light. Vintage ornaments and a Christmas Eve surprise add to a sweet story.

With this group of favorite authors, you will experience suspense, heart-touching emotion, laughter, warmth, and sweet romance…..all with the strength of faith-filled grace. What a perfect set of stories to get ready for the Christmas season. A great Christmas gift to fill someone’s virtual stocking…..errrr, Kindle!

*I won a copy of this book, with no requirement to write a review. I’m thrilled to share my honest opinion about this collection.

***

Another Christmas collection of Seeker novellas is Home for Christmas, a set of historical romance stories. I highly recommend both collections….great authors, great stories, great value. And these sets are excellent for gifting!

TEA TREATS: Cranberry Apricot Scones with Orange Glaze, compliments of author Mary Jane Hathaway.

Cranberry Apricot Scone with Orange Glaze

Cranberry Apricot Scone with Orange Glaze

I first saw this recipe when author Mary Jane Hathaway posted a picture on Facebook. She was preparing these scones for sharing the recipe on the Yankee-Belle Café blog. (www.Yankee-BelleCafe.blogspot.com) She graciously allowed me to share the recipe with you. Thank you, Mary Jane and all the Yankee-Belle Café gals!

Here is the recipe Mary Jane Hathaway and the gals at the Yankee-Belle Cafe let me share with you:  RECIPE FOR CRANBERRY-ORANGE SCONES

I used dried cranberries, which worked fine. These are simply delicious…..and taste and smell like Christmas….a perfect treat for a Christmas tea celebration.

If you want to learn about Mary Jane Hathaway’s books, click here.

PRAYER:

Dear Lord,

We pray for all Christian authors as they bring the message of hope and love to others through their books. We pray that others learn about the light of the world, placing their faith and trust in You.

In Jesus name, Amen.

***

I’m sending my prayers for all of you, dear friends, for a blessed Christmas and a year of treasured blessings in the New Year!

Thank you for visiting me and taking a bit of quiet time to celebrate the treasured blessing of Christ’s birth.

Sherida Stewart

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#TUESDAYTEA for Christmas with reviews of some Christmas e-novellas

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Please join me for a Christmas tea as I serve Biscochitos with our tea. I’ve decorated our party with this year’s addition to our nativity collection, a gift from my husband. And we’ll chat about a few e-book Christmas novellas–which make quick gifts, if you need a few more ideas. Let’s celebrate!

And the angel said unto them, “Fear not: for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10-11 KJV

Nativities are a passion of mine. Some sets I display throughout the year, but others come out for the Christmas season. This year we added this special treasure made by a Jemez Pueblo artist. A deer is included among the gathered animals since deer are an important animal to the pueblo. Rather than the traditional gifts, the wise men bring corn, a blanket, and a drum.

Pueblo Nativity

Pueblo Nativity

Biscochitos are the state cookie of New Mexico, traditionally served at Christmas. There are many different recipes for this cookie, which also is made in a variety of shapes. This is my mother-in-law’s recipe. She always made these for our Christmas festivities. They make lovely tea cookies.

Biscochitos Recipe 

1/2 cup shortening

2/3 cup sugar

1-1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

1 egg

1 tbsp orange juice

Cinnamon-sugar mix

 

Cream sugar and shortening.

Add flour, anise seed, baking powder, and salt.

Combine egg and orange juice, then beat into creamed mixture to make a moist dough.

Form dough into a long roll, about 1-1/4 inch in diameter, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm.

Remove from the refrigerator and slice cookies 1/4 inch thick.

Sprinkle one side with cinnamon-sugar mixture, then place on a cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 12 minutes until lightly browned.

Biscochitos

Biscochitos

If you’re looking for a last minute e-gift book, I’d recommend some of the faith-filled Christmas novellas available.

The Evergreen Bride by Pam Hillman

The Evergreen Bride (12 Brides of Christmas #3)The Evergreen Bride by Pam Hillman

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is a delightful Christmas story!

This historical romance set in 1887 in Sipsey Creek, Mississippi, is filled with sweet love.

I liked the enthusiastic school teacher, Annabelle Denson, who is determined to fulfill her dream of a white Christmas by traveling over her holiday to visit her cousin in Chicago, Illinois.

Sawmill owner, Samuel Frazier, is my kind of hero, with his gentleness, quiet manner, and sincere desire to make Annabelle happy.

Lovely surprises and touches of a country Christmas make this novella a charming story—a perfect story to feel the warmth of Christmas love!

View all my reviews

There are twelve books in this collection of Christmas Bride novellas, each sold separately for 99 cents.

 

Hope for the Holidays-both the contemporary and historical collections by best-selling inspirational authors would be good ideas for e-stocking stuffers.

Hope for the Holiday Contemporary CollectionHope for the Holiday Contemporary Collection by Mary Connealy

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

What a collection of great authors!

I’ve just finished I’LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS, and I smiled through the whole story. Author Tina Radcliffe has a gift for creating heart-touching characters through sparkling dialogue. Matt and Patience discover true understanding of perfect love as they move towards their Happily Ever After. The romantic tension, the interesting plot, and the touches of Christmas make this a great feel-good romance.

I’m excited to read all the other stories in this contemporary collection, as well as the stories in the historical collection, because these are all FAVORITE authors. The HOPE FOR THE HOLIDAYS collections are just right for enjoying the sparkling spirit of Christmas!

View all my reviews

Thank you for joining me for a Christmas TUESDAY TEA! I wish you a treasured Christmas filled with the blessings of hope, faith, and love!

TUESDAY TEA: A CUP OF GRATEFULNESS and a review of HOLIDAY DEFENDERS!

Tuesday, November 11th, 2014
SALUTE TO OUR VETERANS!

SALUTE TO OUR VETERANS!

For this Veterans Day TUESDAY TEA post, I’d like to salute our veterans and all our military members (and their families) with a cup of gratefulness! We are thankful for their sacrifices which have preserved our freedoms. As a country, we have the freedom to hear and accept these words:

“For everyone who asks receives;

he who seeks finds;

and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Matthew 7:8 NIV

Veterans Day is a perfect time to review Holiday Defenders, a collection of three inspirational romance suspense stories featuring military heroes and touched with Christmas warmth.

….

Holiday Defenders: Mission: Christmas Rescue\Special Ops Christmas\Homefront Holiday HeroHoliday Defenders: Mission: Christmas Rescue\Special Ops Christmas\Homefront Holiday Hero by Debby Giusti

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A TRIO OF CHRISTMAS GIFTS

What a Christmas treat-a trio of novellas filled with surprises and holiday romance!

The three stories in Holiday Defenders are exciting suspense-filled romances with touches of Christmas warmth.

Mission: Christmas Rescue, by Debby Giusti, has plenty of page-turning action as an intriguing mystery must be solved in order for soldier Nick Fontaine to protect his former girlfriend, teacher Liz Tate. Criminals who have abducted her brother are also after Liz and the children she is charged to keep safe. Filled with continuous excitement, the story ends with a charming Christmas tradition. A heart-touching romance by one of my favorite authors!

Special Ops Christmas, by Susan Sleeman, is set in Florida where there are harrowing attempts on scientist Claire Reed’s life. Green Beret Travis Chapman must keep her safe, even though this is difficult because of their past relationship. I was kept guessing about the attacker’s identity. Touches of holiday spirit are sprinkled throughout the story.

Homefront Holiday Hero, by Jodie Bailey, finds Kelly Walters busy with Christmas preparations for military families. Soldier Tyler Rainey is determined to find out who is behind the attacks on Kelly. There are unforeseen twists in his investigation as he finds himself attracted to Kelly.

Thank you Debby Giusti, Susan Sleeman, and Jodie Bailey, for your faith-touched stories, each a gift of exciting suspense with touches of Christmas warmth and holiday love. I read these with deepening appreciation for the holiday and year-round sacrifices of our military families. Holiday Defenders would be a perfect Christmas present to give this year!

View all my reviews

God bless all who give to our country through their service and sacrifice. Thank you!

TUESDAY TEA: Christmas Eve

Tuesday, December 24th, 2013

May your Christmas be filled with the glittering light of faith, hope, love, peace, joy, and grace brought by the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Nativity

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NIV

TUESDAY TEA: Reflecting on “My One Word” for 2013—LIGHT

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013
Join us at the Seekerville New Year's Eve party!

Join us at the Seekerville New Year’s Eve party! My critique partner and I will be hosting at 7 pm EST!

I want to give you an early invitation to a New Year’s Eve party….the annual Seekerville ’round the clock New Year’s Eve Party….and a bit of a preview. My critique partner and I will be hosting the 7 pm EST hour of the Seekerville New Year’s Eve party on December 31, 2013. As an early treat, please join me for tea today and try a sample of what we’ll be serving during the party–Fire-Crackers….yummy spiced cheese crackers. My critique partner will be bringing a sweet *chocolate* treat to the party. 🙂

New Year's Eve FIRE-Crackers

New Year’s Eve FIRE-Crackers

Seekerville (www.seekerville.net) is a special community…..a place where a group of Christian authors offer valuable writing advice and encouragement to unpublished writers. Seekerville celebrates the year’s end with a virtual New Year’s Eve party–giveaways, food (with recipes) and a time for fellowship as we each reveal the “My One Word” we have chosen for 2014. During last year’s party, the book My One Word, by Mike Ashcraft and Rachel Olsen, was featured as a thought-provoking way to look at resolutions for the next year.  (www.myoneword.com)  The challenge is presented to Christians to “Choose just one word that represents what you most hope God will do in you, and focus on it for an entire year.”

Their message calls to me. Last year, I chose LIGHT as my 2013 word. I decided on this word since I wanted to spread the LIGHT of God’s love to others because He is the LIGHT of the world. I believe God did use me as a vessel for shining the light of His love. I pray I will continue to shine His LIGHT in all I do.

Please join us for the party on December 31, 2013. I hope you’ll choose one word that will shine a LIGHT on what you hope God will do in you during 2014.

May your Christmas be blessed with glittering love as you walk in the LIGHT of our Lord!

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS

 “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12