The Winner of Katy Lee’s prize is Stephanie Sullivan. Congratulations, Stephanie. Now, on to Katy’s Christmas memory.
A Christmas Memory
Growing up, I was as enchanted by the Christmas season as every child is. But I was so enamored of it, day by day, that I was reluctant to shut off the magic of the season long enough to sleep every night. So each night, I would tiptoe downstairs and sit staring up at the tree. My mother would leave the lights plugged in, and I would just gaze at the lovely lights. I’d often gently pluck my favorite ornaments and hold them, staring at them.
We had so many wonderful ornaments. I mean, I am sure if anyone else saw them, they would hardly find them magical. But oh—how much they meant to me. What was my favorite? It’s impossible to choose. (There was a diorama ornament with a tiny Santa and his reindeer. What ever happened to diorama ornaments? They are so adorable, and no one seems to make them anymore!) Another special one was a tiny song book that opened and had a music box tucked in the back. Mine played “O Christmas Tree” and my sister’s played the “Waltz of the Sugar Plum Fairy.”
I was usually alone on these midnight tree gazing excursions, but one year my sister woke up and sat under the tree with me. What a delightful treat that was, because I was able to share the loveliness of the tree and the hushed, expectant magic of the house with my sister. We played our tiny music boxes and pretended to read our ornament books aloud. Who can say what exactly made this moment so much fun? I think a lot of it had to do with being up late, with grownups sleeping soundly, and planning for the excitement of Christmas morning.
Years later, my sister sent my daughter Olivia a tiny music box ornament, one exactly like ours from childhood. And you know what? Now it’s her favorite ornament, too. I suspect that when she gets a wee bit older, I will hear Olivia scuffling around by the tree at three o’clock in the morning, enjoying her quiet moment of freedom and peace in the midst of the holiday season.
Lily will be giving away a copy of Healing the Soldier’s Heart and a handmade (by her) ornament.
The Soldier’s Homecoming
Ensign James Rowland was fortunate to return from Waterloo unscathed—at least in body. But guilt from that terrible battle has left him almost mute and crushed in spirit. Only in the company of sweet, compassionate Lucy Williams, a volunteer at the Veterans’ Group in Bath, does he begin to feel happiness is within reach.
Penniless governesses can’t afford dreams of romance. Lucy Williams is resigned to lifelong spinsterhood—until James enters her life. His mother opposes the match. Lucy herself is sure the chasm between their ranks is too wide. But now that she has helped heal James, he intends to overcome every obstacle between them…and emerge victorious in the battle for her love.
*To be eligible for Lily’s presents, you must leave a comment and live within the Continental United States. Winner will be selected using Random.org. The winner will be notified Dec 8 and posted on the sidebar as well.