The Winner of Roxanne’s prize is Patty Wysong. Congratulations, Patty. Now, on to Patty’s Christmas memory.
The Christmas of 1983 was an exciting time for me. Newly-wed to my handsome husband, we had just moved into our very first home, a small ranch house that was perfect for a couple starting out. I worked full time at the hospital while finishing up my last few months of nursing school: Danny had landed a management job after graduating in the spring. Our future looked bright. But our present, at least financially, was tight. With a new house comes all the lovely things that come along with being a homeowner so there was no money to really ‘deck the halls.‘ For this year, Christmas would be on a shoe-string budget.
One item our lack of funds cut was the opportunity to get a special Christmas ornament that celebrated our first year as a married couple. I wanted one so badly–something simple like a Christmas ball that had our wedding date on it that I could look at in years to come and remember this first Christmas together. But as December 25th drew closer and the money in our bank account evaporated, I knew getting such an ornament wouldn’t be possible.
The weekend before Christmas, the nurses I worked with threw a party for our floor, just a small get together for the night-shift nurses and staff before the holiday rush. Each one of us bought a dish and a small gift to exchange. We had a great time just talking–night shift on a med/surg floor stays hectic–but it wasn’t long before it was time for the crew working that night to leave. Someone passed around a bowl and everyone drew a slip of paper with a number on it that corresponded to a gift. Once everyone had a present, I picked the first bit of tape free, my heart caught in my throat. A crystal tear shaped ornament with ‘1983’ engraved into one side
The little ornament has held a place on our Christmas tree for thirty years now, through two babies, countless moves and a roller coaster ride of ups and downs that happen in every marriage, the memories of that first Christmas together sweetly lingering on even after the holiday is over and our ornament has been carefully tucked away for another year.
The Doctor’s Bride
First stop: Hillsdale, Michigan, to break the marriage contract his late mother arranged between him and Katie Clark. Years ago, Katie left him behind in Charleston. But after a train crash, he comes face-to-face with Dr. Kathleen Clark, his childhood friend all grown up.
When Josh shows up in town, claiming they’re betrothed, Katie refuses to consider an arranged marriage. She’ll marry for love or not at all. Besides, he’s headed for Kansas Territory; her practice is here in Hillsdale. So why are they both finding it hard to break their betrothal and say goodbye?
Patty will be giving away a copy of her February release, Hearts Rekindled.
Patty Smith Hall has been making up stories since she was forced on boring Sunday drives into the Georgia countryside when she was too young to stay home. Now she’s happy to share her wild imagination and love of history with others, including her husband of 30 years, Danny; two smart and gorgeous daughters, and a Yorkie that she spoils like a baby. Her latest release is The Doctor’s Bride(Harlequin/Heartsong.)
*To be eligible for Patty’s book, you must leave a comment and live within the Continental United States. Winner will be selected using Random.org. The winner will be notified Dec 11 and posted on the sidebar as well.