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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

This Time of Year

Welcome guest blogger Dora Hiers!

Don’t you just love this time of the year?

Kids bundling up to play in the snow, then racing inside with rosy cheeks, flushed with excitement. Christmas music playing softly on the radio. Pumpkin pies baking in the oven, the scents of ginger and cinnamon drifting through the house. Whispers and giggles as children point out colorfully wrapped presents under a gigantic pine tree loaded with pinecones and sentimental ornaments. Snuggling in front of the fireplace with hubby while you cheer for football teams or watch your favorite movie. Loading up the car for road trips to visit family members you haven’t seen in awhile. Squirting whipped cream on a tall mug of hot chocolate for a late afternoon yummy. Watching the glow of a thousand candles light up a sanctuary, and songs of praise reaching toward heaven.

Christmas is a highlight of my year. Sure, it’s crazy busy with buying and wrapping gifts, attending school and church programs, making the rounds at holiday parties, school exams, visiting relatives. But, during this hectic season, I make a conscious effort to slow down, to thank God for the “ultimate” gift given to me.

What’s the ultimate gift? A chance for a fresh start. A giant eraser to wipe away the grunge. Paint bright enough to cover black walls. Spring-cleaning from the ceiling to the floor and all those dusty blinds in between.

It’s a gift given to you by a loving Father. No strings attached. “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Eph 2:8-9, NIV)

Wow! Merry Christmas!

What about you? What’s your favorite time of the year and why?

Thank you Dora!
Check out her exciting story- available here now!

Devastated after the brutal murder of her husband, Chelsea Hammond vows never to love another lawman. Intent on rebuilding her shattered life, she turns her focus to helping troubled teens. But when an angry father bent on retaliation, threatens her, Chelsea must turn to the one man she never thought to trust: Deputy U.S. Marshal Trey Colten.

Trey wants only to protect Chelsea, but she blames him for her husband’s death. Trey can relate. He blames himself, also. As danger lurks, Trey begs Chelsea to heed his warnings. He let down one Hammond. He won’t let down another—especially one who now holds his heart.

When Chelsea is snatched from her home, can she put aside her fear, and trust Trey with her life? Can she forgive him for destroying her past and let him help to rebuild her future?

Where one journey ends, another begins…


“I suppose I should have been a vet.” Chelsea stroked the dog’s fur from his head all the way down his back, careful not to touch his wounded leg.

“Maybe. But I don’t think you’ve wasted your energy or your talents as a guidance counselor. Teenagers can’t seem to resist you, either.”
That produced a full-fledged smile in his direction. Way to go, Colten!

“Remember that natural charm I warned you about?”
He threw back his head and laughed. “Yes. And after a few days in your presence, I’m inclined to agree with you.”

He pulled into the veterinarian’s parking lot and glanced her way, surprised to see her grinning. “What?”

“Saved by the vet.”

Her words hit him like a piano dropping ten stories. She was flirting with him.

He took his time walking around to her side of the truck. He opened the door and leaned in, planting his hand on the seat next to her shapely legs.

His face hovered inches from hers while he savored the way her wavy hair cascaded down her shoulders, the lips that curved in that always graceful way, and the eyes that spoke everything his heart wanted to hear.

Her eyes closed, and her lips parted slightly.

Trey snapped out of it. He couldn’t do this. He was on the job. She didn’t know the secrets he knew, the truth about her husband.

Her eyes startled open. As much as he wanted to partake and enjoy, he couldn’t. He touched a silky curl framing her face and ran it through his fingers. “You need to know that right now I’m working. But there will come a time, soon, when I’m not.”

She can’t bear to look at yesterday.
She has no strength to face today.
She won’t believe in tomorrow

meet Dora Hiers…

After a successful auditing career, Dora left the corporate world to be a stay-at-home mom to her two sons. When her youngest son didn’t want her hanging out at school with him anymore, Dora started writing heart racing, God-gracing books. Dora belongs to the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and the Carolina Christian Writers. Dora and her husband make their home in North Carolina. When she’s not writing, Dora enjoys reading and family gatherings. She despises traffic, technological meltdowns, and a sad ending to a book. Her books always end with happily-ever-after’s.

Readers can connect with Dora:
Facebook: Dora Hiers Author
Twitter: @DoraHiers


Dora Hiers said...

Thanks for allowing me to visit during this holiday season, Robin! I appreciate your hospitality.

Robin Bayne said...

Honored to have you here Dora!

E.A. West said...

Wonderful post, Dora! The Christmas season is an amazing time of year filled with family, friends, and love. Plus, winter usually brings snow, which I love. :)

~Dana Pratola said...

Always a pleasure seeing you two lovely ladies again =-) Your post made me feel all warm and fuzzy, Dora =-D Even though I hate winter I love Christmas, and showing off God's blessings!

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

sounds like a great book Dora!

Good luck & God's blessings with it.

Angie Arndt said...

I love Christmastime, too, Dora. :) Not only is it our Savior's birthday, it's also my wedding anniversary (17th). Beautiful time of the year.

Dora Hiers said...

E.A., I'm with you. I LOVE snow. When our kids were younger, we always traveled over the winter break to find snow. Wonderful memories! Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks, Dana! I'm sorry you hate winter. I always look forward to snuggling in front of the fireplace! Not that we can't do that in summer, I'm just

Pamela, thanks for the good wishes! Enjoy your holiday season.

Hiya Angie. What a wonderful time to celebrate an anniversary. Merry Christmas and Happy Anniversary, my friend. Thanks for stopping by.

LoRee Peery said...

Lovely post, ladies. One of the reasons I love winter is because my mom made being snowed in one of the best experiences of my childhood.
Loved this book as well.

Donna B said...

Great post, ladies! I loved the story! God bless you all in this holy-day season.

Kate Dolan said...

I love the Christmas season too, but I do have a tendency to get so caught up in "stuff" that I forget to spend much time contemplating the reason for the season. Thanks for the reminder.

Donna L Bolk said...

Christmas is my favorite time of year. I'd like to share one of my favorite holiday memories. A few years ago, I was caught up in the 'shopping at the last minute mode'. I came out of a store and there was a man sitting on a stack of newspapers, asking for money. At first I just shook my head and said no. But for some reason I changed my mind, reached in my pocket and gave him a dollar. I remember thinking when I turned to leave how clean and smooth his hands were, how blue his eyes, and how kind and tender his smile. It was one of those smiles that warms the heart. I was struck with wonder. Why would a street begger have such clean, smooth hands? Less then thirty seconds later, I turned to look at him again, and the man was gone. I didn't see wings, or a heavenly light, but I do believe, I met an angel that night. Merry Christmas everyone, and thank you for letting me share.

Mary Manners said...

Dora...what a lovely post. I'm so thankful for friends like you to share in the Christmas season joy.

Robin...thanks for hosting Dora and everyone else this month. What a wonderful Christmas gift!!!

Dora Hiers said...

Thanks, LoRee. I'm so thankful for special memories like that, aren't you? Living in FL, we always loaded the sleds in the car and traveled to FIND snow! Thanks for stopping by, LoRee.

Hey Donna B. that phrase! Thanks for stopping by. Merry Christmas to you!

You're not alone, Kate. It's hard not to get caught up in the busy-ness of the season. Nothing like flicking in a Christmas worship cd to listen to while I'm wrapping presents or addressing cards to help me remember why we celebrate. Merry Christmas! Thanks for stopping by.

Donna L, nothing like glimpsing an angel to get you in the Christmas spirit! Wow! I can only imagine what it was like for Mary to actually talk to an angel. Thanks for sharing.

Mary, thanks for your friendship. WRP authors are an awesome group! I'm so proud to be part of Pelican. Merry Christmas!

Marianne Evans said...

I always love getting to know you better, Dora!! Both you and Robin are such fantastic ladies!!! Great post, and congrats again on the wonderful book Journey's End!!

Dora Hiers said...

Backatcha, Marianne! I can't wait to meet you in Chicago next year for the RT Booklover's Convention. You're such a sweet friend. Thanks for your kind words.

Robin Bayne said...

Thanks everyone for commenting! Donna Bolk, amazing angel story, thanks for sharing! I only wish we could tell which homeless were real, which were angels and which had their Mercedes parked around the corner!