Whenever I say, ‘Santa Lucia,’ I can’t help picturing – and, frankly, hearing – Don Knots attempting to sing the traditional Italian song as Barney Fife in The Andy Griffith Show. So many other, better singers have recorded it, but for some reason, Knots’ is the version that sticks in my head.
However, that was not my first interaction with the celebration known as the Feast Day of St. Lucy. I first learned about the primarily Swedish holiday from Kristen’s Surprise, one of the books in Kristen’s American Girl series. Being part Swede and part Italian myself, Santa Lucia Day has become a holiday that fascinates me.
I love Thanksgiving. One of my favorite parts about the holiday is hosting the big feast. There’s nothing better to me than a table full of food and surrounded by family (or those adopted as family for the day).
Despite my love of the holiday, I know Thanksgiving has a lot of pressure. It may be one day out of the year, but on it, we pack a momentous dinner, a myriad of family dynamics, and the start of the Christmas season. Perhaps that is why there is so much fuss to push Christmas off until we’ve given Thanksgiving its due. And yet, have we actually remembered what Thanksgiving is all about?
Hummus and Homicide, by Tina Kashian, is the first book in the Kebab Kitchen Mystery series. Lucy Berberian is a lawyer who returns to her home town after quitting her big city job. Her family owns a Mediterranean restaurant, where she reluctantly agrees to work. But when the health inspector dies after Lucy served her, all Lucy’s plans go awry.
Do you have a good night ritual with your children? In How do you say Good Night, illustrated by Catalina Echeverri, Zoey the Zebra wonders how the animals around her say good night. The story is her search for the answer to her question.
Christmas, that most wonderful time of the year. It can be also be challenging: winter storms muddle travel, parties over-fill our calendar, family can have its own dynamics. Nevertheless, it has always been my favorite holiday.
It’s that most wonderful time of the year. But even with lights, family, presents, holiday movies, and great food, one emotion often eludes us: Peace. We can have everything on our wish list, but that settled calm seems to slip through our fingers.
Joy, an emotion that lights up the eyes of a child when they open a gift to find their dreams come true. It fills the soul like a warm cup of soup on a winter’s night. It switches out wrinkles for smile lines on the eldest person’s face. No time is joy more easily come by, nor taken away, as at Christmas.
Love. What better topic to cover during this Christmas Season? As writers, we cover the topic of love from many different angles. It’s a desire that drives a character to good or evil. The reason behind a character’s action. Of course, there’s romantic love. So what makes Christmas Love even more special?
I love the Christmas season. It is a time when a child’s wonder is most allowed in adults. Lights sparkle on every street corner. Cheer is in the air. Snow is even more welcome. It is at this time of year, amid all the trials and tribulations of adulthood, that we can take a few weeks to remember the innocence and joy of childhood.
As a writer, it can be easy to lose sight of what we are thankful for amid rejection letters, failed technology, and endless revisions. Today, the people of the United States take a day out of our lives to remember all the things for which we can be thankful (while eating amazing food and watching American football, of course). So, for this post, I came up with a few things for which a writer can be thankful….