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Archive for December, 2012

Happy day-after-Christmas, readers,

I’m not sure what the weather is like in your neck of the woods, but here in Ohio (central and northern) we’re getting a blizzard at the moment. What a good day to stay indoors and build a fire in the fireplace.

And if you’re looking for something to do while you’re shut in, (especially if you got a new E-reader for Christmas…) my latest book, Living in Harmony,  is on sale in Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Apple, and the Sony Reader.  From now until January 2nd, Book One of the New Beginnings series is under 3.00 at all participating distributors, including Amazon, CBD.com, Barnes & Noble, iTunes, etc. In fact, Amazon has it for 2.44. What a deal!

Living in Harmony won the 2012 Lime Award for Excellence in Amish Fiction by the Christian Manifesto.
So if you’re fond of Amish fiction, now’s the time to pick up my latest for cheap.
Book two of the series, Love Comes to Paradise, will release end of January through the Internet, and by February 1st in stores.
In the meantime, be safe, stay warm and dry, and off the roads if they’re nasty.
Mary

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Christmas for those with few of family

Ah, the holidays. Those two words often evoke feelings of anxiety in the hearts of many Americans. So much to do to get ready: Clean the house, then decorate it from top to bottom, inside and out; send out greeting cards, cook an enormous amount of food ahead, so that the roast turkey or glazed ham with all trimmings will look as effortless as the cooking shows on cable television. And what about the shopping, you ask? Yes, what should we buy our mother-in-laws who are so picky, our children’s ballet teacher, the neighbors who are always on diets, the work gift exchange, our best friends, and our not-so-best-friends who are bound to show up bearing wrapped packages? Did anybody mention children and grandchildren? It’s no wonder many Americans greet December with waning enthusiasm as years go by. As Christians, we know in our hearts to keep Christ at the center of the holiday, giving Him the focus. Then hopefully we’ll be able to pick and choose how much activity to partake in without losing the spiritual flavor to the season.

My husband and I represent a very small group who’s almost never heard from…people who have no one to cook culinary creations for at the holidays, who clean their house expecting few guests, and whose gift list is miniscule and growing smaller each year. I usually have far more cards than addresses in my book, and without children or grandchildren, we never find ourselves deep in debt once January rolls around. I know what you’re thinking: Lucky you. But remember, once you’ve finished your list of chores and the blessed Eve and Day finally arrives, you will be surrounded by a bevy of people who love you. My husband and I only have each other… and the Lord.

So those of you with large families living close enough to spend time with, stop focusing on everything you must accomplish. Split up the chores equitably, settle for less-than-gourmet meals, and set dollar limits on gift expenditures. Do whatever necessary to keep the Christmas season from spiraling out of control. Then take time each day to give thanks that you have been blessed with your loving families. Don’t think I’m complaining, because at least my husband and I have each other. Pity those who are alone and don’t know the Lord. I can’t imagine a sadder holiday season that that. Merry Christmas to one and all.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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Where is this newborn king of the Jews? We saw His star as it rose, and we have come to worship Him. Matthew 2:2

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Good Monday morning, readers,

I hope your weekend was lovely. It hit sixty degrees yesterday in Ohio, which is absolutely fine with me. Today I’m welcoming Amy Lillard, a fellow author of Amish fiction. Amy’s latest release is Saving Gideon from B&H Books . Here is a blurb about the story.

Gideon Fisher wants only one thing out of life— to be left alone.  This is not the Amish way, but he’s devastated after the death of his wife.  He has lost his faith.  He buys a farm on the outskirts of the district and pulls away from his community.  But when a freak spring snowstorm brings a beautiful Englisher to his farm, what choice does he have but to let her in? Dallas socialite, Avery Ann Hamilton is intrigued by the Amish farmer who pulls her out of the snow and into his austere life style.    Poor little rich girl, Avery has just gone through—–yet another—–bad breakup.  Every man she meets only wants her for her father’s money.  All she has ever wanted is to be loved for herself.  Avery soon discovers that the Oklahoma Amish country is the perfect place to hide out and heal her broken heart. But she finds a peace in those back roads that she’s never felt before.  Now her life has purpose and meaning as she connects with God and those around her.  But it has even more as she begins to care for this man who needs both love and forgiveness. Gideon never wanted to live again much less fall in love, but Avery finds her way into his heart, showing him the beauty of life and God’s greatness.  But as the feelings between Avery and Gideon grow, can they overcome their dissimilar lifestyles or will their sheer differences pull them apart?
And here is a little something about the talented author:
Amy Lillard is an award-winning writer who loves reading romance novels from contemporary to Amish. These two genres met in her first book, Saving Gideon. Born and bred in Mississippi, she now lives with her husband and son in Oklahoma. The second book in the Clover Ridge series, Katie’s Choice, is scheduled to release May, 1, 2013. She is currently working on the third in the series. Find Amy on the web at http://www.amywritesromance.com
To win a free copy of Saving Gideon, please post a comment here to this question:
Have you ever wanted to run away from your life and hide away where no one could find you?
Have a great week, readers. And stay safe.  Mary

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Hello Readers, but I won’t say “Happy Saturday”…not with the day our country had yesterday. What senseless tragedy! What a loss of precious life! What can we do to stop this madness? My heart and prayers go the families of the victims and the entire town of Newtown, CT. May God shine His grace on your town and help you heal.

With yesterday’s tragedy, I forgot to post about my publisher’s sale of An Amish Family Reunion at most distributors like Amazon.com, CBD.com, Barnes & Noble and iTunes. This book made the CBA, CBD, and EPCA best-seller lists. From now until December 17 it will be offered for $2.99 in all e-book formats including Kindle, Nook, Kobo, Apple, and the Sony Reader. Hope you will look for it and enjoy if you missed this one.

Talk to you on Monday when I’ll welcome fellow author Amy Lilliard to Home Thoughts.

 

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Good Tuesday morning, readers.

I’m sending you sunny wishes from Wilmington, North Carolina. My super publisher, Harvest House, just sent me the trailer for my January release, Loves Comes to Paradise. I love this trailer, especially the music.! Please click on the link and tell me what you think.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CBCYVRevxis

Also, for those of you who are fans of Amish fiction. I will be a guest on Amish Wisdom, Suzanne Woods Fisher’s wonderful radio/podcast show. She does an awesome job of interviewing guests, both in fiction and non-fiction alike, besides being an award-winning writer herself. Please tune in on Thursday Dec. 6th, if you have a chance. I will be posting a direct link to tune in anytime afterward as soon as it’s available.

 

In the meantime, enjoy your day wherever you are. Don’t worry too much about the upcoming holidays. Things will fall into place as they usually do. Wherever you are in getting ready, take heart–you’re way ahead of me!

best, Mary

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Christmas in the South

Happy Saturday, readers,

I truly love Christmas…every part of it except for maybe the crowds at the mall. But it’s odd to be in the South this time of year, watching them gear up for the blessed season. As a born-and-bred Northerner, it seems so incongruous to see Christmas lights strung up the trunks of palm trees, or attend tree lighting festivals with carolers dressed in shorts! Not that I’m complaining. I certainly am NOT complaining. People who know me well know I can’t stand driving in the snow. I’ve skidded into one too many ditches! The other evening we went to the “white lighting” display in St. Mary’s GA. I’ve never enjoyed a small-town community event so much. As Santa arrived on Main St. with Mrs. Claus (in a horsedrawn carriage,)each block illuminated their lights one after another, for at least a mile. Families pushing strollers, young people, old people–everyone came out to welcome Santa to town. Along the waterfront, choirs singing carols, dancers, elves, everything you could think of made the occasion bright. And temps were in the 50’s! How lovely was that for an Ohioan? Not that I won’t be glad to be home when I get there. I may even enjoy the snow, providing I don’t have to drive far. And after all, what would I do with all those lovely wool sweaters, and scarves and parkas I’ve collected?

Here’s some photos of St. Mary’s GA. The last photo is of me standing in front of a heavy-laden lemon tree. Who even knew they grew on trees??Lemon Tree in Amelia IslandChristmas lighting in St. Mary'sChristmas in St. Mary's2

 

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