What the Holidays Mean to Me

I am doing a super fun “12 Days of Christmas” event that Catarina’s Reading and Things is putting on!

I canNOT believe Christmas is just two days away! I’m not sure who is more excited, me or my  daughter!

Okay…maybe my husband?

ANY-WHO today’s question is “What does the holiday season mean to you?”

I actually have two answers, and both are near and dear to my heart.

First, I am a Christian, and ultimately Christmas is for celebrating the birth of Christ. Each year my husband and I go through the story of Advent with my daughter…

well, actually this year we have gone through it several times, as she has been wanting to read the whole story over and over every night.

It’s been fun.

Also, just a side-note: Jesus did not, in fact get gold, frankincense, and myrhh.

Oh no.

According to my (at the time) three year old, he got ice cream, milk, and a cool car which she still insists on to this day.

I’m not going to argue.

(Have you tried arguing with a 3-4 year old? Pointless. Utterly pointless)

*ahem* Moving on

So that’s it…that’s my primary answer: Jesus’ birth, and many years later I am still utterly in awe of the whole thing.

The second answer I would give is that this season is all about generosity, which ties in closely with my first anyway.

The older my daughter gets the more I realize how easy it is to forget to give, how hard it can be to give (especially for a child so young), and yet how IMPORTANT it is for our children to learn how to give.

Not just giving presents, but giving of ourselves joyfully.

Putting others ahead of our own wants.

This is a super hard concept for a four year old, and I don’t expect her to fully grasp that right now, but it is important to us, as blessed as we are, to give in whatever ways we can.

But we want her to learn how amazing it is to give rather than always getting.

So, it all  boils down to one word:

Generosity.

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway!!!!

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The Redeemable Prince

 

This is it y’all…the last…one
*sob*
The last book in the series that was my fall into the rabbit hole that is Indie.
The last book in the series that transformed my life (in the reading sense) in the most amazingly delicious way ever.
The last book in one of the best (in my humble opinion) love stories I’ve ever read.
Like, right up there with Pride and Prejudice good.
Or at least I think so.

And this book WILL NOT disappoint! We have read the love  story of Kiran and Eden (TEAM KIRAN ALL THE WAY THE WHOLE TIME!!!), Avalon and Amelia, Jericho and Olivia, and we finally get to read Sebastian and Seraphina’s story!

IT IS SO GOOD!!!!
Here it is y’all:

 

Purchase on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1wBL3UQ

Seraphina Van Curen and Sebastian Cartier thought they were soul mates once upon a time. But for over a year, they have been well aware of just how quickly love can turn to hate and how cruel fate can be.

They might not be able to stand the sight of each other, but that’s okay since they avoid each other like the plague.

When danger strikes too close to home, and ancient Magic surfaces, they find themselves in the center of a deadly war. Seraphina and Sebastian strike an uneasy truce in order to end Dmitri Terletov, once and for all. They must work together to save what’s left of the Kingdom and protect the people they love most.

Along the way, they discover fate isn’t finished with them yet.

Fate is just getting started.

 

Haven’t started the Star- Crossed Series yet?  Reckless Magic is FREE!

Free on Amazon: http://amzn.to/137ush0
Free on Nook: http://bit.ly/1wBKfPR
Free on iBooks: http://bit.ly/1swKKwd
16 year old Eden Matthews has been in and out of private schools for the last two years. She can’t seem to stop herself from closing them down. Kingsley is her last chance to finish high school and the last private school willing to accept her.

She is focused on just getting through graduation until she realizes Kingsley is not like the other private schools she’s been to. The students may be different, but so is she. And after meeting Kiran Kendrick, the boy who won’t leave her alone and seems to be the source of all her problems, she is suddenly in a world that feels more make-believe than reality.

To top it off, she is being hunted by men who want to kill Kiran and her best friend Lilly is taken away to a foreign prison. Eden finds herself right in the middle of an ancient war, threatening everything she loves. She alone has to find a way to save her best friend and the boy who has captivated her heart.

Reckless Magic is an intricate story about mystery, adventure, magic and forbidden love. Eden Matthews is an unlikely heroine determined to save the world and be with her one, true love before it’s too late.

 

About Rachel Higginson 

Rachel Higginson Author Pic

Website     Facebook    Twitter

Rachel Higginson is the creator of The Star-Crossed Series, Love & Decay Novella Series, The Starbright Series, The Siren Series, Bet on Us and the soon to be released, The Five Stages of Falling in Love! She is also the co-creator of the podcast “Zach & Rachel Take Over the World.”

She was born and raised in Nebraska, and spent her college years traveling the world. She fell in love with Eastern Europe, Paris, Indian Food and the beautiful beaches of Sri Lanka, but came back home to marry her high school sweetheart. Now she spends her days raising four amazing kids. In the few spare moments she has to herself, she is either reading for hours on end or writing her own stories.

Season 3 of Love & Decay!!!!!!

It’s here!!! AND the cover is GORGEOUS (as usual!)!!! This is the ONLY novella series I read, and I am surprised I read it…

there are zombies involved

and blood

and gore

and so much angsty survivor stuff it’s insane!
Regan and CO. are amazing, and the start of this season comes out with a BANG!!! (Pun intended)

Seriously.

I could NOT put it down!

Go get it (and if you haven’t read any of it before the very first 6 episodes are free!!! Links to follow!

 

Amazon: http://amzn.to/1x928Iw

B&N: http://bit.ly/1yH6Rla

Smashwords:  http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/501120

iBooks is not available yet…but as soon as it is we will send it out!

 

Season Three, Episode One Blurb:

Zombies- as if that wasn’t enough to ruin any girl’s dream of a happily ever after.

It’s been six months since Reagan Willow fled the Colony and Matthias Allen’s tyrannical clutches. Six months since she broke Hendrix Parker’s heart. Six months since she watched Kane Allen sacrifice his life to save hers.
Whatever was left of her already-tattered life during the Zombie Apocalypse fell apart six months ago. Now, on the cusp of crossing the Mexican border, there is hope that she might lead her friends to a better existence.

Except Zombies are only the beginning of their problems. Reagan and her friends must battle the elements, armies of Feeders and bounty hunters desperate to drag them back to the Colony to face their greatest threat.

The Colony’s power stretches wide and far. Their only hope is to outrun Matthias and get to Mexico.

Love and Decay, Episode One is the first episode in Season Three of a novella series in a Dystopian Romance about Zombies, the end of the world and finding someone to share it with.

This story takes place over multiple episodes, with a release date every two weeks. Approximately 20,000 words.

 

Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Haven’t started the Love & Decay Series Yet?  Season One Episodes 1-6 is Free!

Free on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1sgIZTH

Free on B&N: http://bit.ly/1AlLItP

Free on iBooks: http://bit.ly/1sgJjBT

Free on Smashwords: http://bit.ly/1yEoEo4

 

Zombies- as if that wasn’t enough to ruin any girl’s dream of a happily ever after.

A vaccination gone oh so wrong and a huge portion of the world’s population was turned into Zombies. Reagan Willow is forced out of her home when her parents become casualties of the horrid Zombie Apocalypse. With the help of her best friend Haley, they’ve become somewhat of experts on surviving the dangers of a world thrust into chaos and decay.

Reagan and Haley are on a vague mission to find somewhere safe to live out the remainders of their terrifying life when they stumble upon the Parkers, a pack of brothers that seem to have the survival thing down in a much more efficient and successful way than Reagan could ever have imagined. They are also protecting their eight year old sister, Page, and will do anything to keep her safe.

The brothers decide that Reagan and Haley need help with being kept safe as well, and as a group they set off to find the Zombie-free utopia Reagan is dreaming of.

Zombies are a daily problem, constantly threatening the lives of their group, but they’re not the only peril on the journey ahead. Militia groups of power hungry men are also a constant concern. And settlements of paranoid, suspicious people turn out to be just as hazardous.

Danger looms over every inch of the way, but Reagan, Haley and the Parkers are determined to get to their goal and remain together. Soon the Parkers become more to Reagan than just traveling companions and more than friendship starts to develop between her and Hendrix, the second oldest brother.

But at the end of the world, nothing can be as simple as life and death. Now, Reagan is going to have to schedule falling in love between hunting and surviving. Hopefully she can last long enough to find out if true love can still exist when everything else has started to fall apart.

Love and Decay, Volume One, is a compilation of the first six episodes in a twelve episode season. It is a Dystopian Romance Novella Series about Zombies, the end of the world and finding someone to share it with.

This story takes place over multiple episodes, with a release date every two weeks. Each episode is approximately 20,000 words.

About Rachel Higginson 

Website     Facebook    Twitter

Rachel Higginson is the creator of The Star-Crossed Series, Love & Decay Novella Series, The Starbright Series, The Siren Series, Bet on Us and the soon to be released, The Five Stages of Falling in Love! She is also the co-creator of the podcast “Zach & Rachel Take Over the World.”

She was born and raised in Nebraska, and spent her college years traveling the world. She fell in love with Eastern Europe, Paris, Indian Food and the beautiful beaches of Sri Lanka, but came back home to marry her high school sweetheart. Now she spends her days raising four amazing kids. In the few spare moments she has to herself, she is either reading for hours on end or writing her own stories.

Cover Reveal & Giveaway!!!!

Check out the cover reveal for Kat Nichols’ Family Secretshosted by Itching for Books. This is the first in her YA Paranormal series. Continue below for the intriguing cover, teasers and giveaway.
 
 

 

Series: Secret Societies Collection
Release date: January 2015
 
SYNOPSIS VIA GOODREADS:
An orphan by the age of sixteen, Sophia Morganthal now lives with her best friend and struggles in a world with no relatives. Midway through her Senior year, Sophia finds herself flying across the country to live with a family she never knew existed. She ends up with more questions than answers when she discovers that not only does she come from a long line of witches but that she must be initiated within the year to prevent a battle for coven leadership. 
 
Feeling more alone than ever, Sophia finds her solace in books. The journals of past initiates provide her with more than she ever wanted to know and make her question the path she’s on. Amidst all of the upheaval in her life, Sophia also finds one source of happiness – Connor. The last thing she needs is more complications, but Connor is the only person who makes her feel wanted for herself and not for what she stands for. 
 
As Sophia learns more about herself, and what being initiated into Blackthorne coven really means, she must answer the ultimate question – would she give up everything for her family?
 
EXCERPT
 
   After watching Alexa blow up a precious stone, I was a little hesitant to try. She watched me, her foot tapping the floor repeatedly, until I picked out a pretty blue gemstone that matched my shirt. I held it in my right hand, placing my left hand over it just as Alexa had done. Here is where I thought my previous failed attempts would come in handy since I already knew what didn’t work. But it didn’t matter much after all. My magic, perhaps knowing it was about to be used for the first time, was waiting as impatient as a child kept inside on a rainy day. Unlike those previous attempts, I was finally able to find it, grasp a tendril and tug lightly. It, whatever it was, unspooled and began to move towards my hands. I looked up at Alexa, panic building in my chest, heart beating erratically as this energy moved through my body. It began to pool in my hands, where I should have been able to send it into the stone, but somehow it was blocked. My heart continued to race, getting faster and faster as the energy filled my hands. The pressure built until I was sure my hands would burst, when Alexa placed a hand on my wrist. 
 
   “Relax,” she said. “Let it flow.” 
 
  Something snapped in my brain, a mental block I had thrown up against magic being real, and finally, my power began to pour into the sapphire. It wasn’t long before I felt some resistance from the stone, as the energy flow slowed. I pulled back, somehow instinctively knowing how and my connection to the stone broke. In my hands, I held my very own power stone. Opening my hand, the gem sat on my palm, pulsing along with my heartbeat. I barked out a laugh, staring at the stone, then raised my head to look at Alexa. 
   It was real. It was all real. Everything they told me. I shook my head, still staring at the stone in my hand. The magic energy had retreated back into my body, but I could feel it pulsing inside my chest, refusing to be hidden again, at one time both foreign and completely natural.
 
 
 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kat Nichols was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago. The youngest of four children, she’d been known to play for hours with only a cardboard box for entertainment. Her imaginary friends had friends… and family… and even little cities to play in. As she grew older, she began to put some of these stories down on paper, rather than keeping them in her head. Writing a novel had always been a dream for her, perhaps an item on her bucket list, but it wasn’t until she joined a writing group with other aspiring writers that she finally got to work.When not writing, Kat is reading or driving her son to and from practices and wishing she was reading.It depends on the day. 
Kat still lives in the suburbs of Chicago with her wonderful husband, their hilarious son and their sometimes adorable and sometimes annoying cat, Ozzie.
 
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