Holiday Hangover…And it’s not even December yet!

We can drive ourselves crazy, chasing the “perfect” holiday, until all we feel is the chase and the need for a big ol’ nap to rest up for the next surge of family and friends and celebrating. I know I am. But I’m also getting all kinds of reader mail about the subtext of my Christmas novel–what it really means to be “happy” at the holidays and how hard that can be for some of us, unless we work for it. Overwhelmingly (with a few notable exceptions on Amazon, readers who find my premise depressing), the response has been hopeful and excited and folks walking away with a life-affirming new take on what this time of year can mean to them and others. We might have to work hard to find the “happy” sometimes, and holidays are rarely perfect the way we see them in movies and ads and so forth. But the mere fact that we have something to fight for and families or friends to share the struggles of the season with makes this…wait for it…A Wonderful Life.

its a wonderful life

For me, watching with gratitude how wonderfully Christmas on Mimosa Lane is being received, I’m seeing the hard work of the last six months (and the effort I’m pouring into writing the sequel that will be out next Summer, OVER the holiday season) pay off in a way that’s better than any tangible present I will get this year.

Readers are reading, and they’re responding, and they’re loving COML enough to want to talk about what it’s meant to them. That’s this authors idea of a dream come true. Which reminds me of a favorite quote…


Notice the “action” in Walt’s words of wisdom.

Writing COML like it would be the end of me, more than a few times. But look at the beautiful result. Sweet Summer Sunrise has the potential to be equally as powerful, but writing the draft and then honing those bare bones into something meaningful isn’t what I’d prefer to be spending my holiday doing. But I dream of readers loving and sharing that story, too. So I keep writing.

Holidays can be like that, whether you’re working through them or not. We have to want our “happy” sometimes. Wonderful isn’t always a gift–it’s often more of a pursuit that you have to tackle and wrestle to the ground and fight for until it submits. Will you make your holiday what you want it to become, or will you despair of ever being able to get there?

wake up with thoughts of wonderful

I know. I have holiday hangover already, and we’ve just barely recovered from Thanksgiving around here. There’s another full month to get through. But this time of year isn’t about enduring. It’s about living your dreams, just as I challenged my Christmas on Mimosa Lane characters to take charge of and live theirs. It takes courage, as Walt said. It takes faith, as we learn from It’s a Wonderful Life. And it takes discipline of the mind and imagination, each and every morning we wake up, to see something amazing within our grasp.

We can drive ourselves crazy with all we hope to accomplish, or we can purse our holiday with hope and excitement and the determination to make magic happen, regardless of how tired and overworked and weary we are.

I’m waking up this morning and wishing for all of you the same as I do for myself today and through the holiday–find a way to make a difference in others’ lives this season, and believe that the same love will flow back to you!

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