Saturday, December 14, 2013

‘Tis Better to Give

by Sparkle Starr from Zydeco Cakes
the Piece of Cake Mystery Series

I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m already tired of talking about the holidays. Gifts, trees, decorations, shopping, food … blah, blah, blah-de-blahblahblah. I mean, come on people! Get over it already.

christmas VillageOh, I know what you’re thinking. You think I’m a Grinch. You think I’m some Christmas-hating freak. That I don’t get all giddy and full of warm fuzzy feelings this time of year. Well, that’s not true at all.

I don’t hate Christmas. I just don’t get Christmas.

We didn't celebrate when I was a kid. I didn't have a picture-perfect holiday season like a lot of people I know. My mother (a bona fide hippie) could barely remember her own name half the time. I have no idea who my dad is (long story) and my brother left home a long time ago. So I don’t have much of a family, and what family I do have isn't  the kind of family you spent time with, y'know?

That makes Christmas a difficult time for me. I'm not whining about it. It is what it is.

We never decorated a tree or had some big celebratory meal on Christmas Day, so I don't have any decorating tips or holiday recipes to share. And I sure never woke up to presents from Santa Claus on Christmas morning. My mother was big on the the truth (sometimes a bit too big, really) so she made sure I knew the truth about that story from the time I was old enough to understand what she was saying. And yeah, I know, the reason for the season, except I never went to church as a kid either, so that's not part of it for me.

Anyway, Christmas doesn't exactly hold a bunch of magic for me. And actually, that makes me kind of sad at times. Because my truth is that I’d like nothing more than to buy a bunch of presents and deliver them to my loved ones. I just don’t have a bunch of loved ones to give presents to. That’s kind of the problem. At least, I haven’t had in the past.

Actually, I guess you could say that my friends at Zydeco are like family to me. Rita is a terrific boss and everybody likes her. And the rest of the gang is pretty great, too. I'll bet if I told any of them how I feel, they'd make sure I was part of their family. But I don't want to get in the way and besides, if I admit any of this aloud, they’ll all think I've gone soft.

So what I do is, without telling anybody, I buy presents for strangers. I've found a couple of great places that collect toys for kids who are in shelters and stuff like that. No, I don't get to see their faces when they get the presents on Christmas morning, but it's pretty cool anyway and it doesn't cost all that much. And yeah, it makes me feel better about the whole Christmas thing.

But don’t you dare tell a soul about this! Seriously. I have a reputation to protect.


As part of Killer Characters’ Seasons Readings giveaway, Sparkle and Jacklyn are giving away a signed Piece of Cake mystery. Choose any one of the four books already in print. To be eligible, just comment below and leave your e-mail address so Jacklyn can contact you!

Jacklyn Brady lives on the Gulf Coast and writes the Piece of Cake Mystery series which is set in New Orleans and features cake artist and trained pastry chef, Rita Lucero. The Cakes of Wrath, book #4 in the Piece of Cake Mystery Series, is available now!

Jacklyn loves to hear from readers. Connect with her on the web: Website | Facebook | Twitter

photo credit 1: kevin dooley via photopin cc
photo credit 2: Wysz via photopin cc

29 comments:

  1. I'm so very glad you found such a wonderful charitable way to celebrate Christmas in your own way!
    lynn@tangledyarn.com

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  2. I love this series!! sweetcandi32010@yahoo.com

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  3. Love her books havent read cakes of wrath yet celsaieh88@gmail.com

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  4. Sounds like another wonderful series to add to my reading schedule.

    bevarcher at me dot com

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  5. kim j
    wonderful idea for Christmas presents and a great new series to read
    kjohnson952@yahoo.com

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  6. I enjoy this series.
    sgiden(at)verizon(dot)net

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  7. I must look for book one in the series if I don't win one...

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  8. Giving to strangers is a great way to celebrate the season!

    cozyupwithkathy at gmail dot com

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  9. Giving gifts to strangers is a great way to celebrate!

    ElaineE246(at)msn(dot)com

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  10. Love this series, truly keeps you guessing as to who the bad guy/girl is.

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  11. Secret celebrations can be the very best!

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  12. I enjoy giving other people gifts. I like seeing or hearing their reactions. Never read anything by you. I'd love to win. Thanks.

    Meljprincess AT aol DOT com

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  13. I'd say Sparkle has managed to figure out the true meaning of Christmas. She sounds like a wonderful character - I like her already! And I like cake, so....

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  14. Giving just feels good! lkleback@hotmail.com

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  15. 'Tis the season for giving and Toys4Tots is my favorite. I read Arsenic and Old Cake not long ago - great series!

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  16. I am sure "Aunt Sparkle" have fun buying lots of Christmas presents.

    susierobertsmom at hotmail dot com

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  17. I would LOVE A Sheetcake Named Desire.

    lauraalbert@hotmail.com

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  18. I think Sparkle has the right idea by giving the gifts to children.
    libbydodd@comcast.net

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  19. Giving is much better than receiving. It makes you and others feel good. areewekidding@yahoo.com

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  20. When I first purchased my home, I took a second job to help with the bills. I taught cake decorating at J C Penney. I have fond memories of eating all my mistakes as I was learning new techniques.

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  21. I always get the warm fuzzies when I give. Fun shopping for others.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

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  22. I'm trying to get in the Christmas spirit today because our company party is tonight and the roads are slippery. I'd rather be home reading this book, I think.
    suefarrell.farrell@gmail.com

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  23. We didn't have a large family Christmas, because our family was small but what we had was enough for us. I'd love to win any of the books. dbahn@iw.net

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  24. Thanks so much to everyone who has stopped by already. I've enjoyed reading what all of you have to say. I'm putting every name into the "hat" and will be drawing one first thing tomorrow!

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  25. This December giveaway is killing me! I'm learning about so many series I want to read. My husband thought the TBR pile next to my bed was tall -- after I add all these new ones!!!!

    Jodi
    webbJM@verizon.net

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  26. You are correct, it is better to give than to receive. Thank you for the chance to win.

    griperang at embarqmail dot com

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  27. I love the tough exterior trying to hide a wounded interior - creates some great conflict for the characters. It'll be interesting to find out who this character is and what role s/he has in the book.

    Geek [at] murraylearning [dot] com

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  28. Love cozy mystery . Thanks for great giveaway.

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  29. This is one of those series on my TBR list, oh how many book are on that list!
    liz straw at sbcglobal dot net

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