White #Christmas Memories #holiday

This year much of the country is having a warm streak for the holiday rather than a white Christmas, like the ones in my memories.

I was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, so I grew up thinking a white Christmas was normal. Pittsburgh isn’t exactly known for its temperate weather. As a kid I loved snow. I loved the way it looks when it falls from the sky, so fluffy and otherworldly. I loved playing in it, too, until my mom would come out and drag me inside to warm up. As much as I loved the snow, my parents hated it. Of course, I didn’t have to drive on the wet, slick streets or shovel the walk every time there was a new blanket of wet, white stuff, though I did help as I got older.

Little child playing in snow

This happy laughing child reminds me of my childhood.

My folks did everything they could to avoid a white Christmas, so we often piled into the car for the drive to Florida for the holidays. I learned to swim in a Miami pool one holiday.

Daytona Beach, Florida

Daytona Beach, Florida

One year we weren’t able to leave until Christmas day, for reasons I no longer recall. We got up very early and set off in the car. The fog was so thick, my dad could barely see. I remember riding with the window down, trying to keep the white line on the road in sight and telling him when he got too far away. Fortunately we drove out of the fog when we got on the turnpike and by evening we were somewhere in North Carolina. This was some years ago when almost nothing was open on Christmas. Needless to say, we were tired and very hungry and everything was closed. After finding a motel room, we drove around, looking for someplace to eat. Then we saw a lighted building, a White Castle that was open. That year Christmas dinner was hamburgers and french fries at the counter and we were very grateful for it!

White Castle logoWhen I was fourteen, we moved west to southern California and white Christmases became a thing of the past. California weather is funny. Late December is often warmer than November, and Christmas day can be warm and sunny. New Year’s Day is almost always sunny. (The Rose Parade founders in Pasadena knew what they were doing.) The closest snow may be a sprinkling of white on top of the local mountains, and depending on the weather, lots of people take advantage of the holidays to go skiing.

white chihuahua puppy

Mitzi looked much like this cute Chihuahua puppy

Another thing I love about Christmas is the piney scent of the Christmas tree. Mix in the smell of something sweet baking in the oven, and everything seems right with the world. Alas, the “real” tree disappeared when I was in college. My parents had acquired a Chihuahua puppy named Mitzi who had a fondness for pine needles. She would eat the needles that dropped off the deodar in the back yard and then throw up. That was the year my mom bought an artificial tree. She had no wish to spend the holidays cleaning up puppy puke!

Nowadays we’re bombarded with Christmas music wherever we go, to the point where I get tired of it. But then I remember playing carols on the piano (or organ) while my mother sang along in her lovely soprano. She’s gone now, as is my dad, but I remember those days with great fondness.

What is your favorite holiday memory?


Snow: Love It or Hate It? Winter Madness @psthib #RockingRomance

winter scene

Given the state of the weather back East, I thought Pamela Thibodeax’s Winter Madness the perfect choice for a spotlight. I grew up in Pittsburgh, PA., and as child, I loved the snow. Playing in it was such fun and I never had the sense to know when to come in. My mom had to put on her winter gear, come outside and drag me back in to get warmed up. As an adult, I can see why my parents hated Pittsburgh winters so much, esp. my truck driver dad. If you’re not familiar with Pittsburgh, just think San Francisco with snow and ice. A nightmare to drive in.

But here’s an excerpt to remind us all how magical winter can be.

Winter Madness coverWinter Madness
by Pamela S. Thibodeaux
Inspirational Romance


Sienna has survived what most succomb to – the death of a spouse and child and has maintained her faith despite her troubles. William has never met anyone who actually lived out what they say they believe. Is it true love between the faithful optimist and broody pessimist or simply winter madness?


Her merry hazel eyes danced with humor, but she simply arched an eyebrow at him without comment and rose from her chair. She held a hand toward him. “Come on, I know what we’re going to do today.”

He couldn’t resist the lure of her joy, and grinned as he placed his hand in hers. “What are we going to do?”

“I’m going to show you the beauty and joy of life, if only for this one day.”

Hope flared in his heart that she may be the one person who could do what he considered the impossible. After all, he’d never really gotten over her. Nor did he forget how she’d touched his heart so many years ago in a way no other had since. They paused at the door to fasten their jackets and slip on caps. She took his hand again and led him across the way and two blocks down to a park on the other side of the street. The tiny wooden bridge they traversed crossed over a creek and swayed under their feet. Sienna stopped midway to their destination.

“Listen,” she urged.

He cocked his head. “What?”

“What do you hear?” He turned in the direction she looked, stood still, and tried to hear what she heard. A smile tugged at his lips when he turned to her. Her eyes were alight with joy.

“You hear it too, don’t you?”

“Tell me what you hear, Sienna.”

“Children laughing, the sounds of joy, of love, two things that make this world go around are love and joy. A child’s laughter encapsulates both.”

His heart melted another degree.

Purchase Links:
Kindle http://amzn.to/15IyA49
Pelican Book Group http://pelink.us/15NWhrY

Author bio:

Award-winning author, Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.”

Connect with her online at:
Website address: http://www.pamelathibodeaux.com
Blog: http://pamswildroseblog.blogspot.com
Face Book: http://facebook.com/pamelasthibodeaux
Twitter: http://twitter.com/psthib @psthib

Do you love snow or hate? Leave a comment below and don’t forget to enter this month’s Rafflecopter for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card & 2015 Mouse Pad Calendar.

Linda / Lyndi

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