Book Review & Giveaway: Randolph the Christmas Moose by Gerry Gibson

Randolph the Moose lives with his mother in the Great White North. After a chance encounter with the reindeer from Santa Claus’ sleigh-pulling team, Randolph finds new joy in trail running as he trains to join the reindeer in Santa’s flight school. But when the head elf places him at the workshop loading dock instead (due to his tremendous bulk), Randolph has to use his brains and work ethic to earn respect at his new job… and even save Christmas.

Imagine Rudolf the red-nosed reindeer, except…

– Randolph has a healthy self-image

– Randolph has a more positive outlet for his feelings

– Randolph runs, but not away from his problems

– Randolph is pro-active, refusing to let Santa’s workshop define him as a moose

BE YOUR OWN MOOSE!

Available to buy from…

Amazon.com * Amazon.co.uk * Barnes and Noble * GPlay Paperback * Audible

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Randolph the Christmas Moose is a funny and delightful story about a moose who wants to participate in the reindeer games. It surprised me when Rudolph, of all the reindeer, told him no. How ironic is that?

Randolph kind of reminds me of Rudolph except instead of pouting, he works toward his goal. His mom helps him to realize that he doesn’t want to be a reindeer, he wants to be all he can be as a moose.

Randolph the Christmas Moose is a fun story with great illustrations that children will enjoy. Even better, it teaches children to work hard and be true to themselves. It also shows that stereotyping is not only unfair, but it doesn’t work in a business.

I love the changes that Randolph causes. Just think of how much better our world would be if we could all be as proactive as Randolph!

Randolph the Christmas Moose empowers kids to find the unique leader within themselves and to not allow stereotyping to limit their potential.”
–AUSTIN HIGHSMITH GARCES, author of The Miracle Tree and actor in Dolphin Tale 1 and 2

Randolph the Christmas Moose, filled with humor and character building, shares a twist to a familiar tale to produce an important message about how children can be hard-working, determined and true to themselves.”
–ADAM DOVICO, educator and author of When Kids Lead, The Limitless School and Inside the Trenches

“This is a charming and funny story that will not only entertain kids, but also help them understand that other people’s opinions don’t define them.”
–LINDSAY THOMPSON, filmmaker and writer for PBS’ Arthur

Randolph the Christmas Moose addresses many important childhood themes, including acceptance, endurance and bullying, without sounding ‘preachy.'”
–SUE ELDER, Ed.D., public and elementary school librarian, educator and bibliophile

Learn more at www.GerryGibsonAuthor.com

From Loving Healing Press www.LHPress.com

Enjoy these beautiful excerpts

About the Author


A former teacher, Gerry Gibson is a writer, filmmaker, soccer coach, and YouTube/podcast host. His initial foray into children’s literature, Randolph the Christmas Moose, is being published by Loving Healing Press in 2020. Gerry currently lives with his wife, Courtney, his sons, Bennett and Turner, and countless other microorganisms in Winston-Salem, NC. He writes stories for kids because that’s what he is: a big, grey-haired kid.

You can also follow the author here…
Website * Facebook * Twitter * Instagram * Goodreads * Amazon Author Page

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9. Tuesday 24th November – The Faerie Review  
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11. Thursday 26th November – Dialogue with Doris  
12. Friday 27th November – eBook Addicts  
13. Monday 30th November – Mom’s Secret Book Blog  
14. Tuesday 1st December – Beck Valley Books  

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Book Review & Giveaway: In the Nick of Time by Deedee Cummings

Book Title: In the Nick of Time by Deedee Cummings/illustrated by Charlene Mosley
Category:  Children’s Fiction (Ages 3-7), 28 pages
Genre:  Children/ Holiday
Publisher:  Make A Way Media
Release date:  November 2019

Content Rating: G. Children’s Holiday Book

A Timely Tale about a Little Brown Boy who Saves Christmas. Nick Saint never really put a lot of thought into his name until one snowy day in December when he accidentally receives a letter meant for Saint Nick. Realizing there is not much time left until Christmas, Nick opens the letter. The unexpected message inside ultimately leads him on a journey of understanding poverty, gratitude, and service to others while discovering the real meaning of the holiday spirit.


Buy the Book:   
Amazon
Make a Way Media
Add to Goodreads

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

What a great Christmas story for children! One of the things I like most about this book is that the characters are realistic. Nick is really into playing video games, and he has a bad habit of calling things stupid. He’s a typical kid!

One thing that’s not typical about him is his name: Nick Saint. He never realized it before, but when the mailman makes a mistake and delivers a letter that was addressed to Saint Nick, at first he calls him stupid but realizes that he’s not that stupid after all.

When Nick’s mom encourages him to find out more about his homeless classmate, Nick learns quite a lot. He never realized that many kids at his school don’t have things as good as him. I’m sure there are a lot of kids like him because it’s not something that many parents talk about to their children.

Nick not only saves someone else’s Christmas but he learns about the act of giving. He was also impressed that Cooper was asking Santa for things for his mom and brother but nothing for himself!

In the Nick of Time is a sweet and timely holiday story. It has colorful pictures, good-hearted characters, and a great lesson about our world and how we can help others.

About the Author

Deirdre “Deedee” Cummings believes literacy is a fundamental human right. She is the founder of Make A Way Media, It Pays to Read & the Louisville Book Festival, as well as, an attorney, therapist, and CEO of Abi Behavioral Health in Louisville, Kentucky. Abi is an intensive therapy agency that works to prevent the placement of children in out of home care, such as foster care, hospitalization, and incarceration. Deedee attended Bennett College in Greensboro, North Carolina, one of only two all-female Historically Black Colleges in the country. After graduating from Bennett, she earned a master’s degree and a law degree from the University of Louisville. All of her writing focuses on sharing inspiring messages that remind us all it is never too late to begin again. Deedee encourages the children she works with to write as a way to process emotions, document their journey, and express themselves more clearly. In addition to presenting on multiple topics around the country, Deedee donates hundreds of books and volunteer hours every year to families, children, churches and the local school system. She is excited to announce the launch of her tenth children’s book, This is the Earth. The inspiration for this book came from overwhelming negative media coverage about race relations in our country and across the world. This is the Earth is a book about peace, respect, and diversity inclusion: a message that must be heard and repeated often. She and her husband Anthony live in Louisville with their three children Kayla (an actress in New York), Anthony (a college student and athlete), and Nick (in elementary school).

Connect with the Author:  

website  ~ make a way media  ~ twitter  ~ twitter  ~  facebook  ~  facebook ~ pinterest ~ instagram ~ instagram ~ goodreads

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Oct 12 – Cover Lover Book Review – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
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Oct 27 –Rajiv’s Reviews – book review of In the Nick of Time
Oct 28 –My Journey Back – book review of In the Nick of Time / author interview / giveaway
Oct 30 – Stephanie Jane – book spotlight / giveaway
Nov 3 –Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
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Nov 9 – Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
Nov 11 –Priya’s Lit Blog – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 11 – Ice Fairy’s Treasure Chest – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 11 – Older & Smarter? – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
Nov 12 –She Just Loves Books – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 13 –Nighttime Reading Center – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
Nov 16 – Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 18 – Ice Fairy’s Treasure Chest – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
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Nov 23 – Amy’s Booket List – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 23 – Nighttime Reading Center – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 23 – – Rockin’ Book Reviews – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
Nov 23 – Gina Rae Mitchell  – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
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Nov 25 – Older & Smarter? – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 27 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review of In the Nick of Time / giveaway
Nov 27 – Reading is My Passion – book review of In the Nick of Time
Nov 30 – Cuzinlogic – book spotlight / giveaway
Nov 30 – Literary Flits – book spotlight / giveaway
Nov 30 – A Mama’s Corner of the World – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
Nov 30 – Writer with Wanderlust – book review of In the Nick of Time / guest post /giveaway
Dec 1 – Locks, Hooks and Books – book review of This is the Earth / giveaway
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Movie Review & Giveaway: The Santa Box

THE SANTA BOX tells the story of teenager Kallie Watts. For the past five years, Christmas has spelled disaster for her and her family. When a fire leaves Kallie and her widowed mother homeless just before the holidays, there’s only one conclusion: Kallie is cursed by Christmas. When Kallie and her mother relocate to a small California town, Kallie is confronted by her worst nightmare come true: a town overflowing with holiday decorations and Christmas cheer. Kallie’s life is soon changed forever by the gift of a Santa box. When she lifts the lid, she rediscovers the magic and true meaning of Christmas.

My Review

The Santa Box is a sweet movie about Kallie that’s perfect for the holidays. She and her mom have to move into a new home after a fire destroyed their apartment and everything in it. Kallie is a good girl deep down but she has an attitude, especially when it comes to Christmas. Every time she loses someone close, it’s during the holidays. I had to keep telling myself at the beginning of the movie that she’s a typical teenager, although I did wish her mom would tell her to stop being rude to strangers.

Kallie tries to ignore Christmas and all that goes with it, but that’s not possible especially with her 85-year-old neighbor who has a yard full of decorations. Before she knows it, they become good friends. Their friendship is perfect because he teaches her a lot about life and love, and she’s a good listener and truly cares about him.

Kallie struggles to belong at a new school and to come to terms with loss with Christmas around the corner once again. When she receives the Santa Box, how can she use it to help her situation?

I enjoyed watching Kallie grow and learning about friendship and forgiveness and maybe giving Christmas another chance…

About the Cast

THE SANTA BOX features mostly local talent, including Shawn Stevens as Otto, and newcomer Cami Carver as Kallie. “Playing Otto was something completely new for me, but it was a role I wanted so much,” said Stevens. “The Otto character is an 85-year-old German immigrant, and naturally, Spanky originally wanted to cast an actor who was around that age. But, luckily for me, with the help of an amazing makeup artist, Vanae Morris, I was able to convince Spanky that I could pull-off a great performance of an old German man. And the character was an absolute joy to play.”

“For the role of Kallie, we auditioned dozens of young actresses and Cami originally auditioned for a different role, but she absolutely knocked our socks off!” proclaimed Ward. “We instantly knew she was our Kallie.”

In addition to the two leads, THE SANTA BOX features 20-plus major characters and dozens of extras. “Filming during this crazy time brought some unique challenges, but we acclimated to it very quickly,” said Ward. “Everyone on the production team strictly adhered to safe production guidelines implemented by the health officers we had on set. Thanks to those practices, everyone in the cast and crew stayed healthy and the production went off without a hitch.”

For more information on THE SANTA BOX, visit its IMDB page at: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt12065192/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

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Book Review: The Easy Christmas Cookie Cookbook by Carroll Pellegrinelli

Celebrate the holiday season with festive, deliciously easy Christmas cookies

‘Tis the season to pull out those cookie cutters and get ready to whip up an array of magical, mouthwatering Christmas cookies! From Gingerbread People to Candy Cane Cookies, this standout among Christmas cookbooks is packed with foolproof baking guidance, tons of festive decorating tips, and dozens of super easy recipes for tasty treats―perfect for gifting and simple enough to sweeten any occasion.

This guide is everything Christmas cookbooks should be, starting with the best practices of holiday baking. Find hands-on guidance for decorating techniques like piping icing and adding flair with sprinkles and sugar. Then, bake up some Christmas cheer with simple step-by-step recipes for more than 60 delightful cookies, brownies, bars, and even special treats not found in other Christmas cookbooks.

This top choice in Christmas cookbooks includes:

Christmas cookie kitchen―Go beyond other Christmas cookbooks―this one will show you some essential ingredients you can find in your supermarket, plus guidance on hosting your own cookie swap!
Christmas around the world―Discover cookies and traditions across the globe you won’t find in other Christmas cookbooks, like St. Nicholas Cookies (Speculaas), and Polish-Style Christmas Cookies (Kolaczki).
Yummy Yuletide treats―Enjoy 60+ classic and creative cookies ranging from Christmas Sugar Cookies to sweet and salty Bacon and Eggnog Cookies to giftable Polar Bear Chow and beyond!
Deck the halls with a wonderland of Christmas cookies in The Easy Christmas Cookie Cookbook.

Amazon (to be released on 11/3/20)

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

The Easy Christmas Cookie Cookbook starts with instructions on some basics and how to perform many of the decorations on cookies. Then, of course, are the Christmas cookie recipes. There are also some recipes for not-quite-cookies, such as truffles (yum). After the recipes is a conversion chart which is always helpful, a list of ingredients that should be bought early if possible, and equipment you may need.

I don’t do a lot of baking except for during the Christmas season. There are certain cookies I have to make every year, and then I usually try one or two new recipes.

Some of these recipes are classics. There are several that I already bake that are just a little different from the ones I usually make. For example, the Spritz is one that has been handed down for a few generations and are a little different than the ones in this book, but close enough! I always make a recipe similar to the Snowballs, but mine doesn’t have almond extract (guess what I’m going to try this year).

I found one that I’m going to try this year. The Hot Chocolate Cookie Cups are adorable, and they sound delicious.

The one thing that would make this cookbook even better would be more pictures of the recipes like the one above.

This book has me ready for the Christmas season now! The author explains how you can whip up cookie dough to use later. I think I may do that in the next week or two.

About the Author

Carroll Pellegrinelli is a Wall Street Journal bestselling author. Her first book “Travel with the Lee Girls as They Shop and Eat Their Way Through the South – New Orleans” combines her three loves. The book is part personal travel travelogue, part guidebook and part cookbook featuring some of the area’s iconic recipes.

“Starter Sourdough – The Step by Step Guide to Sourdough Starters”, Carroll’s first full cookbook, was on The Wall Street Journal’s bestseller list. It was written to help people understand that Sourdough bread isn’t hard to make; it just takes advance planning.

Carroll’s second cookbook “The Easy Christmas Cookie Cookbook” will be released on November 3rd. It has over 60 recipes just perfect for holiday baking.

Besides God and her family, Carroll has three big loves: baking, travel and writing. As soon as she could reach the counter, her mother taught her how to cream her butters and sugars. In later years, her father took up baking bread as a way to deal with work-related frustrations. He shared what he learned with Carroll. This passion for baking lead her to a 20-year job as the Desserts and Baking Editor for About.com, which was owned by The New York Times. She created over a thousand pieces of content such as recipes, articles and how-to baking features online. Even though About.com no longer exists, some of her content can be found via The Spruce Eats website.

While her parents were imparting their zeal for baking, her grandmother introduced her to another passion – the exciting world of travel. Carroll’s grandmother took her on her first cruise at age 9. Since then she’s been on at least another 25 more. She’s traveled the world on the sea and via land on her own, and for two decades as a travel agent and tour guide.

Carroll discovered her love for writing by accident. She went back to college to finish her bachelor’s degree. There was a special program that afforded working adults the ability to complete two years of college in just one year. The third year was completed by writing life experience essays and the final year was accomplished by attending weekly classes and writing term papers. Carroll discovered her knack for writing when she had to write a 10-page paper once a week for nearly a year.

Book Review & Giveaway: The Christmas Eve Promise by Elyse Douglas

Christmas Eve Promise: Time Travel Novel (Christmas Eve Series, Book 4) by Elyse Douglas

Publisher:  Broadback (September, 2020)
Category: Time Travel, Historical Fiction, Romance, Christmas

ISBN:
Available in Print and ebook,  405 pages

Eve and baby Colleen are traveling to Ohio for the Christmas holidays to spend time with Eve’s parents.

After a few days in Ohio, they all plan to fly to Florida in Eve’s father’s private airplane.  Patrick will meet them there after he completes exams for his forensic psychology degree.

Nothing goes as planned.  The day Patrick is to leave for Florida, he receives a shocking telephone call from one of Eve’s cousins.  Sobbing, she tells him a terrible tragedy has occurred.  It stuns him and shakes him to his heart’s core.

His life shattered, Patrick knows he has but one chance:  he must use the time travel lantern to return to the past in order to prevent the current tragedy.

But once again, the time travel lantern has a mind of its own, and Patrick is hurled back to a time where he must confront a strange, unfamiliar world and learn why the lantern transported him there.

When Patrick comes face-to-face with a mysterious, beautiful woman who looks and acts like Eve, and whose name is Eve, Patrick is haunted.

He recalls the promise he and Eve had made to each other on Christmas Eve the previous year—no matter what happens; no matter if they’re separated; no matter what time or place they find themselves in; no matter what obstacles they must face, they will always find each other, help each other, and love each other for all time.

The Christmas Eve Promise is a journey about the enduring promise of hope and the infinite, unbreakable bonds of love.

Amazon

Guest Review by Sal

She raised her glass to his. “I want both of us to promise that no matter what happens to us; no matter if we’re separated; no matter what time or place we find ourselves in; no matter what obstacles we face, we will always find each other, help each other and love each other, for all time.”

‘The Christmas Eve Promise’ is the fourth book in the ‘Christmas Eve’ series by the husband and wife writing team known as Elyse Douglas and, in my opinion, the best one yet.
This series, about a married couple who meet via a lantern that allows the user to time travel, has everything I love in a book. Between the romance, the time travel aspect and the mystery, I always end up loving every page of the books in this series, and this one was no different.


This book begins with a promise. On Christmas Eve 2019, Eve asks Patrick to promise that they will always find each other and always love each other, no matter what time period their lantern brings them to. The following Christmas, Eve and their new baby daughter, Colleen go on a trip to visit Eve’s parents in Ohio and then on a flight on her father’s plane. Unfortunately, during the trip they are both killed in a plane crash, along with Eve’s parents. Devastated, Patrick decides to use the lantern to go back in time to rescue them, but, of course, the lantern seems to have a mind of it’s own and it sends him back to 1925 instead.

 In trying to decide what to do next, Patrick accidentally stumbles across a woman who looks and acts exactly like Eve and even has a similar name—Evelyn. Are Eve and Evelyn the same person? Will Patrick be able to save his wife and child? These are questions you’ll have to read the book to find out. And believe me, you won’t regret it. This one captivated me and left me unable to put it down. I hope there are lots more to come in this wonderful series!

Praise Christmas Eve Series by Elyse Douglas

“The Christmas Eve Letter is a beautiful, poignant story. It is well written and will have you turning the pages eagerly.
All of the characters are well thought out, and believably written, together with the well-constructed scenery, that has you feeling as if you yourself have just stepped into the past.
The story is unique and moving. It will hold you long after you turn the last page. A perfect Christmas tale of love and hope.”-Whispering Stories

“This book is the perfect vehicle for a movie, and I can only hope that there will be more in the series. This novel is truly as close to perfection as the reader could imagine! 5 Stars!”–My Devotional Thoughts Blog and Reviews

“I enjoyed the new characters, an update on characters from the first book, and the possibility for more books.  If you enjoy time travel-themed novels you will love these books!”–StoreyBook Reviews

“I am most impressed that this book did so well as a stand-alone novel. Kudos to the author! If you are looking for a good Christmas book with time travel, give this a go!”–Carole’s Bookshelves

“I love this whole story, and I especially love Patrick and Eve’s romance and all of the adventures that they go on together. Eve is exactly my kind of character.  I still can’t stop thinking about the feeling that it gave me and the arc that the characters went on. Everyone really developed a lot in this story and it was so rewarding as a long-time reader to watch that happen. It feels like every new book in this series just keeps getting better and better and I love these characters more and more. Every time a new one comes out I feel like a kid on Christmas morning.
The Christmas Eve Secret is my favorite in the series so far, but if you have not read the first two books I would recommend doing that as soon as possible! If you enjoy romance, time travel, mystery and great writing, I promise that you won’t regret dipping a toe into this series.”–Cuzinlogic

About the Authors

Elyse Douglas is the pen name for the married writing team Elyse Parmentier and Douglas Pennington. Elyse grew up near the sea, roaming the beaches, reading and writing stories and poetry, receiving a master’s degree in English Literature.  She has enjoyed careers as an English teacher, an actress and a speech-language pathologist.

Douglas has worked as a graphic designer, a corporate manager and an equities trader.  He attended the Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music and played the piano professionally for many years.

Website: www.elysedouglas.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/douglaselyse
Facebook: www.facebook.com/elyse.authorsdouglas

Giveaway

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Book Review: A Very Meowy Christmas by Patricia Fry

Rags is at his meowy best in this touching holiday story. The Ivey family and friends share the deepest meaning of Christmas while on a mountain vacation. When ten-year-old Adam and his best buddy, Simon, inadvertently venture off on their own, there is no way their parents could know they’re on a humanitarian mission. They are lost to trained searchers and their dogs, but Rags helps lead the rescue team to the boys and a secret that stuns everyone.While the spirit of Christmas flows throughout this story, it’s the touching gift-giving ritual the families share that will seriously touch you and maybe inspire you to open your heart a little wider this holiday season. This story is packed with suspense and a lot of kitty-cat action, along with some of the most heartwarming moments you’ll experience all year.

Amazon

My Review

I chose to read this e-book after receiving a free copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

This is the third Klepto Cat Mystery I’ve read. I recently read A Picture-Purrfect Christmas and A Christmas to Purr About, and I planned on finishing this book before Christmas, but I got busy with relatives and presents and the making of good memories.

There’s a lot going on in A Very Meowy Christmas. I have a feeling all of the Klepto Cat Mysteries have a lot happening! A friend of Savannah’s has been getting threatening messages so, of course, Savannah feels the need to help her figure out why she’s getting them. The amazing cat Rags is the one who clues Savannah in to there being a problem when he finds a piece of trash that is really one of the notes.

Then, the Iveys and a couple who have a son the same age as their son Adam go on a camping trip. It’s right before Christmas, and they all plan on having fun with a gift exchange of nature-made presents; but will that happen after the boys go missing? It will if Rags has anything to do with the rescue.

A Very Meowy Christmas is two mysteries in one, but it is also about friendship and family. Each of these books stand on their own, but the more of them I read, the more I get to know the characters which is always a plus.

About the Author

Patricia has been writing for publication for over 40 years, having been fortunate enough to establish a career doing what she loves. Hundreds–maybe thousands–of her articles have appeared in over 500 different publications and she has published books on a variety of topics–grandparenting, local history, youth mentoring, journaling and many aspects of publishing and book promotion. After years of writing nonfiction, in 2012, she decided to branch out and try writing fiction and the Klepto Cat Mysteries were created.
The Klepto Cat Mysteries feature Rags, an ordinary cat with a most extraordinary habit–he’s a kleptomaniac. Currently, Patricia is producing anywhere from three to five books per year in both ebook format and in print. Read the Klepto Cat Mysteries and you’ll laugh, you’ll sit on the edge of your chair in suspense, and you’ll smile at the good-feeling you’re left with when you finish each book in the series. 

Website: http://www.KleptoCatMysteries.com

Christmas Poem

Momma wants a Christmas poem,
And it’s two days late.
It’s nice being back home
But I never learned date saving.
Deadlines sound morbid
And we all know life goes on.
Just as Christmas future
Becomes Christmas present
Becomes Christmas past
Moving from ghost to ghost.

I hear the Grinch
Rattling Marley’s chains
To the tune of Jingle Bells
On a snowy winter’s night.
Flakes fall gently
Under a single, cratered headlight
Santa flogs reindeer hides
Out of reflexive lunar trances.

And we all get presents
And we all see our family
And we all eat too much
Except all those that don’t.
I’m unsure how to feel
About the do’s and don’ts,
Trading holiday spirit
For holiday solitude.

There’s a mythos here,
A subjectivity,
A joy and a pain.
A deep caring,
Wounded or welcoming,
Only the kind
Christmas can bring.

by Josh Glasson aka Cynical Wordsmith

and Momma is happy