Thursday, December 6, 2012

Beth Trissel and Cherished Holiday Traditions!

The Contest is closed. Congratulations Carrie!!

KAREN: I'm Thrilled to have Beth Trissel today with us! Let me start with an introduction. Beth married her high school sweetheart and lives on a farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. She's an avid gardener and her love of herbs and heirloom plants figures into her work at The Wild Rose Press. The Native Americans and the people who journeyed to Virgina are at the heart of her inspiration. She also pens historical and time travel romances set in the British Isles. 

***CONTEST: Beth is giving away a Kindle or PDF copy of A Warrior for Christmas to one lucky commenter. Read on to find out how you may be a winner!

BETH: Thanks, Karen, for having me on your blog to share a Christmas memory and my new holiday release.

Some of our family’s cherished holiday traditions are upheld, some fall by the wayside. Others are added. One that continues from my childhood is making sugar cookies.Ages ago, when my kids were small, I began this each year, young, fresh, my mind filled with visions of lovely cookies and sweet children’s faces bent over them with pleasure, then reality hit. My two oldest punched each other and fought over turns at rolling out dough that never rolled as it should and stuck to the cookie cutters. Tempers flared as once again the angel wouldn’t let go and fell apart. We still use those same cutters, btw.

Finally we had sheets filled with an assortment of Christmas figures lavishly covered with a blizzard of cookie sprinkles that rained all over the floor and crunched underfoot. Few actually adhered to the cookies, and those that did had to be pressed on with sticky little hands. When the cookies were removed from the oven, parts of them had billowed up in the baking process, while those that had been pressed almost flat by fingers mashing in the sprinkles were crispy brown.

There was no resemblance at all between our creations and the perfect replicas in the magazines. I don’t like those magazines, but love the show, The Middle, far more realistic. Rather than the holiday utopia I’d envisioned, our baking sessions ended with a tired old hag, two grinches, and cookies only a very undiscerning individual would eat, say a child or a dog. Or my dad. The idea of sharing them with neighbors was dropped, but we loved doing it and rushed at it every year with a glad cry.

Now days, my youngest art major graduate daughter, Elise, heads up this tradition.  She’s adept at it and has taken a fancy to the old time ginger cut outs from my favorite colonial American recipe. This year, after learning my extreme digestive disorder stems from gluten intolerance, we’ll need to adapt the recipe using Jule’s Gluten Free flour.

***CONTEST: Now for the contest. Beth is giving away a Kindle or PDF copy of A Warrior for Christmas to one lucky commenter who answers: Do you have a holiday tradition? If you do, please share it with us.

A brief word about my new Christmas romance novella, A Warrior for Christmas:


Reclaimed by his wealthy uncle, former Shawnee captive Corwin Whitfield finds life with his adopted people at an end and reluctantly enters the social world of 1764. He plans to return to the colonial frontier at his first opportunity--until he meets Uncle Randolph's ward, Dimity Scott. 
Deaf since a childhood bout of Scarlet fever, Dimity Scott intends to be cherished for herself, not her guardian's purse, even if it means risking spinsterhood. Then the rugged newcomer arrives, unlike any man she's ever known. Dimity has learned to manage her silent world, but unaccustomed to the dangers of the frontier, can she expect love and marriage from Corwin, who longs to return to his Shawnee life?

Available in various ebook formats at The Wild Rose Press,  Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble’s Nook book; other online booksellers. Release day was Dec. 5th, so it might take a day or two for the story to show up at all these sites.

*For more on me, my wordpress blog is the happening place. Come on over and visit at:

***CONTEST: Now for the contest. Beth is giving away a Kindle or PDF copy of A Warrior for Christmas to one lucky commenter who answers: Do you have a holiday tradition? If you do, please share it with us.


Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

Good morning! Thanks for having me on your lovely blog, Karen.

P.L. Parker said... Best Blogger Tips

Okay, this book sounds really interesting. Congratulations on the release!

Ana Morgan said... Best Blogger Tips

I love your "clash" of cultures, Beth. This will be a very interesting read!

Sandy L. Rowland said... Best Blogger Tips

We have many. There's a list of family goodies I am commanded to make.
We must watch 'It's a Wonderful Life' together. Tissues in hand.
And, we decorate the tree with a few handmade ornaments made by my mother-in-law. She passed two years ago.
It's wonderful to see the wild grand daughter cradle the porcelain doll great grandma made. Memories are good.

Amy Campbell said... Best Blogger Tips

Good Morning, Beth! I'm really looking forward to reading more by you! I'm reading Kira, Daughter of the Moon and loving it!
My Christmas tradition is fixing dinner for my family (Mom, step-dad, brother, hubby and kids).
Thanks for the giveaway!
campbellamyd at gmail dot com

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Amy Campbell

Thanks so much, Amy. I think we are doing a Christmas brunch this year.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Sandy L. Rowland
Sounds wonderful Sandy.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Ana Morgan Thanks Ana, a very favorite theme of mine. And a favorite story. :)

Megan Kelly said... Best Blogger Tips

Don't enter me in the drawing--your blurb was so enticing I bought it!
Making sugar cookies is a new adventure. I'm a chocolate chip girl myself, so waiting while the dough chills, rolling it out, cutting it, then decorating is a challenge. My dough starts rock hard then gets sticky and has to be rechilled.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@P.L. Parker Thanks so much. It's definitely unique.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Megan Kelly

Well thanks, Megan. I love chocolate chip cookies too.

Karen Michelle Nutt said... Best Blogger Tips


I'm so glad to have you here! Congrats on the new release!!

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Karen Michelle Nutt
Thanks Karen. Delighted to be here. This is my release day party since I didn't have one yesterday. :)

petula said... Best Blogger Tips

A christmas tradition my mum started was making a treasure hunt out of my gifts with chores to do at every clue. I used to do the chores properly as I went. When it was my son's turn he would rush round the clues get all his gifts then have to be shamed into doing the chores. Was I silly or him clever ? :-))

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@petula Fascinating! I'd say he was the smart one. :)

Donna Michaels said... Best Blogger Tips

Great post, Beth and Karen! It's fun to hear about other's traditions. Funny how they mirror your own.

Beth, I agree, The Middle is most definitely realistic. lol

Love your premise and cover. Best of luck on this release!


Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Donna Michaels

Thanks Donna, and yes, most realistic. Reminds me of our house where few of the appliances work, etc...

katsrus said... Best Blogger Tips

Hi Beth~waving. Those sound like my kind of cookies. My mom always did cookies every year. Her's were magazine perfect. As my kids grew up and we did them mine were more like your cookies. LOL. We loved them cause we made them. We always use to cut our tree the day after thanksgiving or that weekend. Was always fun to take the kids. Now I just have a fake one. Looking forward to reading your new book.
Sue B

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@katsrus Cookies, even funny looking ones, still taste good! Thanks so much, Sue. Our family also cuts our own tree and are planning to do so tomorrow.

Susan Macatee said... Best Blogger Tips

LOL, Beth! Do I remember those days! The cookies never came out right, my kitchen would be covered with flour and my sons would loose interest and drift away, leaving me with an aching back from standing over the table and a big mess to clean up.

I love your new book cover!

Sandra Dailey said... Best Blogger Tips

My favorite holiday tradition is on the romantic side. We call it "Santa's Midnight Supper".
After the kids are asleep and the gifts are arranged, Mom and Dad spend time alone with a bottle of wine and a light snack, followed by some cuddling and accompanied by soft music.
My grandparents and parents did it and we've passed it down to our kids now. We are an affectionate bunch.

Cheryl Pierson said... Best Blogger Tips

Beth, we did that with sugar cookies. My gosh, I will never forget that first time. AWFUL. I was sooooo exhausted. Yes, I had that same vision you did with the smiling faces of my children and the "Susie Homemaker" mom. It didn't happen like that. LOL I love the premise for your new book--it looks wonderful!

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Susan Macatee Sounds like we have similar memories. Thanks Susan.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Sandra Dailey What a very lovely tradition.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Cheryl Pierson Thanks Cheryl. I suspect few of us ended up with those picture perfect cookies.

Brit Blaise said... Best Blogger Tips

We have the Christmas Cookie tradition here too. And I make tens of dozens of them. Besides the sugar cookies, the same ones my mother made, we have others, peanut butter, oatmeal and ginger that have been old family favorites.

I have the same cookie cutters that I used in my childhood and the same McCoy Wishing Well cookie jar.

Now I do it with the grandchildren. Last year while I was undergoing chemo, I discovered who the REAL cookie monster was in the house. Because I didn't eat a single cookie, but made the same amount, I ended up throwing uneaten cookies away.

I haven't decided what to do this year. I'll make them, but I have to cut back. Throwing away cookies should be against the law.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

Very touching Brit. I have utmost awe of you for undertaking this with your grandbabies. I should, but don't. :) True--never throw cookies away. That would not happen here.

LisaRayns said... Best Blogger Tips

The only holiday tradition is a family gathering.

Caroline Clemmons said... Best Blogger Tips

We always make snickerdoodles. The girls always got to roll them in the sugar and cinnamon. The floor and counters looked like yours did with sprinkles, but ours were sugar and cinnamon with bits of cookie dough. We use Jules' flour now, but these cookies are a part of our tradition. The other is fudge using my mom's recipe. Mine is never as good as hers was, but we still eat it and give it to friends and neighbors with some cookies.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Caroline Clemmons I like snickerdoodles too!

bn100 said... Best Blogger Tips

Congrats on the book! We decorate the tree together.


Carriefort29 said... Best Blogger Tips

Yes every Christmas as we are putting the tree up, I tell my kids all about my dad he passed 13 yrs ago, it's my way of sharing him with them!
Book looks fabulous


Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

@Carriefort29 How touching Carrie. Thanks.

Beth Trissel said... Best Blogger Tips

Thanks everyone who stopped by and for all your lovely comments. Carrie, yours touched me the most deeply so you win a free copy. The rest of you please rush to your nearest online bookseller and get a copy. And God bless us everyone.

Mary Ricksen said... Best Blogger Tips

I gotta read it Beth! If Elise's cookies are anything like her artistic work, they must be darn good cookies now!

Alexis Walker said... Best Blogger Tips

Hi Beth, my husband just started a new tradition two years ago that involves three Christmas trees, a 4 foot by 8 foot BBQ pit, 80 people, live music and a 30 foot buffet table with all the food made by him! Yup, its our annual Christmas Party. Dare I tell him I'm too old for this? Congrats on your book. I wouldn't mind starting my own tradition by reading a Beth Trissel book on Chrsitams Eve, hint hint ;-)