Archive for December 2018

Snow Globe Memories   7 comments

What is your fondest holiday memory?

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I can’t answer that with a single instance and I have a good reason for that – a couple of them, actually. More about that in a moment.

My mother was born Christmas Day. So was her father. Christmas was not my mother’s favorite holiday because it meant she never had a birthday. When you share your birthday with a deity, you don’t rate – go figure. No birthday parties and no presents. When she was little, her older sister allowed her to share her birthday in September.

When she met my father, she was in her late 30s and this man decided he could move a major holiday for the woman he loved. So we would always have “Christmas” (opening presents) on Christmas Eve and that left Christmas Day for a party. Fairbanks had a lot of bachelor men in those days, so Dad, a chef, would always invite a bunch of them over to celebrate Mom’s birthday.

I have a lot of pleasant memories from those times, but I think the one that gets me the most is a year when weather delayed my dad coming home from a remote location and Mom went to bed without opening gifts. So I sat up. I couldn’t have been more than seven because we moved out of that house the summer I was seven, but I remember sitting up on the window seat in the living room, kind of behind the Christmas tree. The tree lights were on, but if I sat back against the window trim, the drapery let me see out the window without reflections. It was a snow-globe world out there – big wet flakes drifting down from the chiaroscuro sky. And, then a long way off, a man in a tan car coat and heavy winter boots walked along the pristine street shrouded in unbroken snow and my dad walked in the door. He saw the unopened presents and he said “Be patient, monkin.” He made Mom get up and we opened the presents and then just as the last one was done, he pulled out her birthday present and said “It’s one minute past. Open it.” I think he gave her the jade earrings I now regularly wear, the ones she was wearing when the 1967 Flood destroyed almost everything they owned the following summer.

My other fondest memories are holding my newborns in my arms on Christmas Eves and Days. Both of my children were born days before Christmas, five years and 364 days apart. They were neither born early enough to play Baby Jesus in the church pageant, but I always thought I knew what Mary felt like that Christmas morn. And because they were born so close to Christmas, my mother made me extra sensitive to their birthday needs. This year will be the first year in 26 years that neither of my children will spend their birthday with us – though our son is planning to be here the following day for his sister’s birthday. She’s traveling, so hopefully we’ll get a call. And Kiernan will be home for Christmas Eve and this time with a date, so new fondest memories are in the making.

Posted December 24, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Blog Hop, Uncategorized

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Pop Up #Sale   Leave a comment

Amazon has the paperback for $2.51 today only.

Posted December 18, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

Nothing True About Love   Leave a comment

Lyndell Williams

giphy-downsized-large

#OpenBook

Do you believe in true love?

Hmmm…true love?

Okay, we are going to have to slip into a few things before I explain why I find the term true love oxymoronic and somewhat hegemonic. That’s right, my other life is about to come through on this one.

Y’all ready?

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Posted December 18, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

Christmas Lights and True Love   Leave a comment

Magical World Web

This week’s #OpenBook question is:  Do you believe in true love?

I was a little ornery last night. I was on my phone and he was on his phone, and the kid who couldn’t settle down was sandwiched between us in her persistent reminder that even if we hadn’t gone the vasectomy route, we had given life to birth control in human form. I rolled to my side and asked, “Honey, do you believe in true love? Do you think there is one person you are destined to live and love with?” And he gave me the typical husband look of, “What level of hell have I arrived upon? How do I answer this without being transported to the fiery depths of doom and pain? Or worse, the living one she might inflict upon me in real life?”

So he goes, “Um, why?” And I assured him that it was…

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Posted December 18, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

Love is Complicated   Leave a comment

This article didn’t seem to go out on my network, so I’m reblogging it.

aurorawatcherak

Do you believe in true love?

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Yeah, asking a writer who specializes in apocalyptic fiction if she believes in “true love” is going to garner a complex answer. There’s a reason I have never successfully written a romance novel. The hearts and flowers version of love doesn’t live in my house, never did and never will.

Brad and I have only ever been married to each other (33 years this month), but our parents had eight marriages between them…

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Posted December 17, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

Open Book Blog Hop – 17th December   1 comment

Another author’s take on this “true love” topic.

Stevie Turner

This week the topic is:

Do you believe in true love?

I think it all depends on what age you are.  When I was a young teenager I saw the world through rose-coloured glasses and fell in love at the drop of a hat.  Sam and I got engaged at the age of 21 after knowing each other for only 3 months!  However, we’re still married and still love each other, but my goodness, we’ve been through some testing times!  We both agreed it was true love at the start and were very starry-eyed, but that starry-eyed-ness faded when reality set in, and now a more steadfast love has emerged out of  troubled times to take us into our old age.

These days I’d be much more cautious about getting engaged to anybody after just 3 months. That’s because I’m older and wiser, more realistic, and less prone to taking…

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Posted December 17, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Uncategorized

Love is Complicated   8 comments

Do you believe in true love?

Rules:
1. Link your blog to this hop.
2. Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.
3. Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants’ blogs.
4. Tweet/or share each person’s blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.
5. Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.

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Yeah, asking a writer who specializes in apocalyptic fiction if she believes in “true love” is going to garner a complex answer. There’s a reason I have never successfully written a romance novel. The hearts and flowers version of love doesn’t live in my house, never did and never will.

Brad and I have only ever been married to each other (33 years this month), but our parents had eight marriages between them. That might account for why I have a jaundiced view of “true love”. It makes it sound like you’re destined to be together and it’s going to be wonderful. And that’s a crock of nonsense. It’s why I can’t write romance, because I think love is work. When you meet a couple who have been married for 30+ years, it’s because they CHOSE to stay together, not because they felt romantic and happy with one another.

Which is not to say I don’t believe in love. The love of God created mankind, stepped down from a perfect heaven into our messy existence (diapers) and went to the Cross for us, so I absolutely believe in His love. I think human beings, made in the spiritual image of God, can experience and give faded facsimiles of God’s love. In our bent state, we can imitate God, imperfectly. I just don’t think it’s something we feel in our warm gushy parts – except occasionally, when we’re curled up in bed with our backs melting together or when we’re holding our babies in our arms. A lot of what we call love today is infatuation, sexual lust or just plain manipulation of a significant other. Yeah, sometimes we feel like we’re “in love”, but the high divorce rate in Western society suggests we have no idea what love really is.

For me, love is something we do regardless of whether we feel it – hence why I am still married to Brad (an admittedly challenging guy) after 33 years. Many has been the time when I could have tossed all three of my family members out into the cold Alaska winter with nary a qualm, but I made dinner for them instead. That is love in action. Love is a verb in my vocabulary, only rarely a noun. It’s sometimes a feeling, but more often it’s an obligation. I have learned that when I love those around me, I gain benefits after the fact, but only if I pay the investment of love first.

Love can be hard. It’s hard to speak the truth to those you want to love you, knowing that they might just dump rage in your lap instead. You can only really do that if you view love as a verb – something you give to someone else without expecting something in return. A lot of us go through life never feeling loved and so we think love isn’t real, but it is. We experience it every time we give it, but so few of us do that these days. Sacrificial love – caring about another human being without expecting anything in return – is really not in fashion in the 21st century. We too often substitute sex for love and then when the warm romantic feelings are not reciprocated, we think there’s no love there. And that is entirely possible, because we confuse lust (a primal urge) with love (an action we do for others).

So do I believe in “true love”? If true love is hearts and flowers that lead you to happily-ever-after – no. Any time you get two human beings together, there will be conflict and that doesn’t meet up with the hearts-and-flowers concept of “true love”. I do believe in real love, which is something Jesus empowers me to give to others and occasionally it is returned to me. Sometimes that’s in my marriage or from one of my children, sometimes it’s from a random stranger. And those expressions of love toward one another have gotten Brad and I through 33 years of ups, downs, sideways and upside-downs. Is that “true love”? I don’t know. It’s real and like most things that are real, it’s messy.

Posted December 17, 2018 by aurorawatcherak in Blog Hop

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