#FunFriday Christmas Village 2016

Good morning and welcome to the 2016 Christmas Village. I decided to show you this year the step-by-step to getting the village all set up. Some of you may wonder how many hours it takes. From getting out the boxes to the final “Lights on” I would say about 10 hours over two nights. I still have some mini-lights to get on the village as I ran out of batteries. Sigh. Anyway, hope you enjoy it.

#ManCandyMonday and the Christmas Spirit

With it being only 21 degrees in NY/NJ this morning, I definitely needed a little heat to warm me up!

The first blast of heat came as I was finishing up reviewing the galleys for THE CLAIMED, the second book in the Sin Hunters series. Wow, Virginia and Christopher have major heat going on, plus it’s been exciting to see the action scenes come together in the final version. I can’t wait for it to be out and hear what you guys think!

Of course, heading out into the cold on my walk to work has me needing a little more heat and since it is the holidays, I thought why not bring back an old favorite and help get you in the mood for trimming the tree. I did my Christmas tree yesterday along with my Christmas village. I’ll be sharing those photos with you tomorrow!

But for now, here’s our Guilty Pleasure for this morning and Man Candy Monday! Hope he helps warm you up!

13 Things to Do on the Holiday Countdown

With Christmas Eve just over a week away, it seems time to do the countdown of things still left to do for that big day! So here goes:

1. Make a list.

2. Check it twice.

3. Find out who has been naughty and who has been nice. (LOL! Okay I’ll get serious now).

4. Keep to budget for gifts that I still need to buy.

5. Check the pantry and make a list of what’s needed for Christmas Eve dinner.

6. Coordinate with Sis who helps out with the meal.

7. Make sure hubby has my favorite Gloria Estefan Christmas CD ready for the night.

8. Wrap. Or maybe find some nice gift bags for all the goodies.

9. Call friends and see how they are doing.

10. Send out Christmas cards.

11. Buy some more people and cars for the Christmas Village. It’s looking a little lonely.

12. Write. Write. Write.

13. Remember it is Christ’s birthday and thank the Lord for all my blessings.

Take a moment to share what’s on your holiday to-do list.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Since I mentioned the Christmas Village, I thought I’d share this little slideshow I created of this year’s Christmas Village that my daughter and I put together. If you can’t see the video below, you can click here or cut and paste this link: http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1703762830471

Thursday 13 – Holiday Favorites

With Christmas just over two weeks away, I am struggling with work and writing deadlines and getting the house ready for Christmas Eve, and yet there is no denying that I am getting in the holiday mood. I love this season with all that it represents – love for each other and sharing that love through the simple things like a hug or a smile. For Christians like me, the celebration of our Lord’s birth and embracing the principles of love and respect for all humans, regardless of race, ethnicity or religion. The important things, you know.

But there are also the little things that bring a smile and lift the heart and so today I am sharing thirteen of those little things that elicit joy in me during this holiday season!

1. Christmas carols. Love to hear them and sing them.

2. The smell of roast pork on Christmas Eve morning.

3. Hot apple cider.

4. Hot chocolate.

5. Christmas lights.

6. Santas. One year we were on a train filled with dozens of Santas on the way to Santacon. What a blast!

7. The Nutcracker. We go to see the ballet every year as part of our holiday tradition.

8. Christmas trees. Love picking one out and decorating it (look for more on this on Fun Friday).

9. Exchanging gifts with friends and family.

10. A child’s face on Christmas morning as it lights up at the presents Santa brought.

11. Watching Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the original animated one).

12. Christmas Eve dinner with family and friends.

13. Going to NYC to see the holiday windows, the tree in Rockefeller Center and the pond at Bryant Park.

Hope you enjoyed today’s Thursday Thirteen. I welcome you to share some of your favorite things about the holiday season.

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others’ comments. It’s easy, and fun!

As a P.S. – This is a photo my Christmas village from a few years back. It’s still in the works this season and I hope to finish it soon!