My family wasnâ€™t much of one for Christmas traditions, but something I do remember well from my childhood was my parents let us decorate the tree. I remember certain ornaments like I remember old friends: funny silky little Chinese birds with multi-coloured satin plumage that had to have their wire feet twisted around the branches to stay on: pipe-cleaner clowns inside metal rings with tiny beads for their eyes; fragile glass globes covered in glitter that felt like sandpaper against my skin; huge pine cones that my mum had decorated, and with a hoop of black wire round their stems to hang them by. That and the smell of a real tree every year: pine, damp and earth. Collecting all the needles as they fell so I could use them as grass for my toy horses. Funny how those things have stuck in my memory far more than any of the presents I ever got.
But that all ended when my parents split up. At seventeen maybe I was a bit old for all that kind of stuff anyway. It certainly killed any enjoyment of the day that first Christmas without my mum and sister at the family home. We still had a real tree, but with my dad working 12 hour shifts and no time off for Christmas, it was pretty lonely. I told myself I didnâ€™t care, but that was a lie.
Christmases after that were never the same, though not as lonely as that first one after the divorce. I met my now husband just a year later and spent the day with his family instead. Their tradition was to each open a present in turn from a huge pile stacked beside our chairs after a late Christmas dinner. Most times it took us two days to complete this ritual! Then later on we had the first of our three little monsters, and it got more complicated. Iâ€™ve yet to meet a child who could show the same kind of patience about opening presents as my husbandâ€™s family!
These days we have our own traditions for Christmas, and in some ways they reflect the magic of mine as a child. Each year our children are allowed to pick and buy a new ornament for the tree. This does make our decorations an extremely random collection, but it also makes Christmas more theirs (as it should be). Plus thereâ€™s always the decorations they make at school or craft clubs too. And though most years weâ€™ve let them do some of the decorating, this year it was solely their task. Eldest is now old enough to reach the top of our tree, while youngest has learned the decorations are for hanging and not playing catch with. On the 1st of December this year, all of us put the artificial tree together. Hubs and I put on the lights, then let the children decorate it as they wanted without even a suggestion from us adults. And they did a damn fine job, donâ€™t you think?
And this year I have an angel story for Christmas too, though Lucien is not the kind of angel that youâ€™d put on your tree. Maybe some of you would like to find him under it on Christmas morning though. 😉
How far would you fall for love?
Centuries ago, guardian angel Lucien committed a terrible sin. He gave into his own desires and revealed himself to the mortal woman he’d been charged to protect. By kissing her, he condemned himself. Torn of his wings and his angelic powers, thrown down into the City Below, Lucien now serves Satan as an incubus who claims souls for his master from the City Above, and who feeds on the energy stolen from his mortal lovers. Dark, sexy and charming, he’s been top of his league for decades uncounted.
Until His Infernal Highness decides to send Lucien looking for a lost angel. Lucien has no idea what he did to deserve such a punishment, and the touch of an angel could destroy him. Yet the challenge and the potential kudos of seducing one of his former heavenly kin leads him on.
But when he finds the angel, he learns he still has more to lose than his already forsaken soul.
After spending twelve years working as an Analytical Chemist in a Metals and Minerals laboratory, Pippa Jay is now a stay-at-home mum who writes scifi and the supernatural. Somewhere along the way a touch of romance crept into her work and refused to leave. In between torturing her plethora of characters, she spends the odd free moment playing guitar very badly, punishing herself with freestyle street dance, and studying the Dark Side of the Force. Although happily settled in the historical town of Colchester in the UK with her husband of 21 years and three little monsters, she continues to roam the rest of the Universe in her head.
Pippa Jay is a dedicated member of the Science Fiction Romance Brigade, blogging at Spacefreighters Lounge, Adventures in Scifi, and Romancing the Genres. Her works include YA and adult stories crossing a multitude of subgenres from scifi to the paranormal, often with romance, and sheâ€™s one of eight authors included in a science fiction romance anthologyâ€”Tales from the SFR Brigade. Sheâ€™s also a double SFR Galaxy Award winner, been a finalist in the Heart of Denver RWA Aspen Gold Contest (3rdÂ place), the EPIC eBook awards, and the GCC RWA Silken Sands Star Awards (2ndÂ place).
Website â€“ http://www.pippajay.co.uk
Adventures in Scifi – http://www.pippajay.blogspot.co.uk
Spacefreighters Lounge – http://www.spacefreighters.blogspot.com
Romancing the Genres – http://www.romancingthegenres.blogspot.co.uk/
SFR Brigade – http://www.sfrcontests.blogspot.co.uk/
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