Marilyn Brant's newest novel is out and she's visiting to share her memories of past holidays. Read her enjoyable piece and take your chance to win a copy of her previously published romances. The giveaway details are at the end of the post. Good luck and happy holidays, everyone.
I love holidays and special celebrations! Before my son was born, I used to be an elementary school teacher who loved nothing more than traveling and learning about new cultures. (Anyone who read my last women's fiction book, A Summer in Europe, already knows how much that's true, especially when it comes to traveling in beautiful Italy!! *waving to Maria Grazia*)
Well, as the teacher of my classes, I would lead my students through social studies units on topics like “communities” or “cultures," which always led to discussions -- especially during the holidays -- about “celebrations around the world.” And, since I was also really fond of films like Bing Crosby's and Fred Astaire's "Holiday Inn" (one of the inspirations for my newest novel, Holiday Man, which is a contemporary romance that takes place over a year of holidays), I couldn't imagine what could be more fun than the idea of creating and celebrating holidays!
These days, I might find myself chuckling about the goofy paper mache projects and plates filled with international appetizers my students and I made, but the truth is that always really loved teaching these units. They were so enjoyable. And, above all, my classes not only loved them, but they always learned a lot in the process.
One of my favorite activities was the reading of Byrd Baylor and Peter Parnall’s children’s book, I’m in Charge of Celebrations. The girl narrating the story has a deep love for her desert environment, and she’s come up with a number of special personal celebrations based her experiences living there. There’s “Dust Devil Day” and “The Time of the Falling Stars” and a bunch of other interesting and clever events that she uses to mark her year. Basically, she’s created days no one would ever find on a standard calendar, but she’s highlighted those singular moments of joyful celebration.
I always made my students come up with their own special celebration as an accompanying class project, but that was as much for me as it was for them. I still think back on days from my childhood and teen years that were memorable enough to warrant their own special "holiday" in my world. And, as an adult, I have a number of them, too. Special dates that I’m certain no one but me celebrates -- at least not for the reasons I’m pausing to honor them. But that doesn’t make them any less important to me than other favorite holidays, like my son’s birthday or Christmas or (because I think the Bill Murray film is hilarious and have to watch it every year) Groundhog’s Day.
What about you? Do you have personal celebrations in addition to the national holidays and traditional birthdays or anniversaries? Or, if you could make up a day of celebration, what would it be for?
A Summer in Europe~Out Now from Kensington Books!
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Win an e-book copy of Marylin Brant's romances! Open internationally, you can win either On Any Given Sundae or Double Dipping . Check them out and choose your favourite, then leave a comment answering Marilyn's questions at the end of her post, and finally add your e-mail address This giveaway ends December 30th.