Welcome to my home on the web. You may have noted the mountains in the banner are the misty Blue Ridge of North Carolina. Did you know time traveling Highlanders live there? Curious about the big cat? Florida panther~from the Crimson Storm paranormal novel, Sea Panther.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Winter Warm-Up Blog Hop - #Giveaway - #HopswithHeart : Romance on Christmas Eve


Update: 12/24

And the winners are:

Dawn Marie Hamilton Writes winner - Beaded Holiday Key Chain - Dawn Hagan

The Hop Grand Prize winner - $75 Amazon Gift Card— Stephanie Osborn


Congrats Dawn & Stephanie!!




http://www.hopswithheart.blogspot.com/



Welcome!
to the
Winter Warm-Up Blog Hop












Christmas is my absolute favorite holiday season so step on through the garden gate and spend some time with me and a few of my characters during this festive time of year. Then scroll down to the bottom of the post and enter the giveaways. Merry Christmas!







Available at Amazon for Kindle
and in trade paperback.
 FREE with Kindle Unlimited.
Meet Isobell and Archibald from Just in Time for a Highland Christmas. They've unwittingly traveled forward in time from 16th century Scotland to the present day Village of Anderson Creek nestled within the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina and are having trouble reconciling their differences. Of course, the fae have been interfering and only have until midnight Christmas eve to unite the couple. The deadline is fast approaching. Christmas dinner is over, and Isobell...

~~()~~

“Can we make snow angels?” Scott hollered over bantering voices.

“Yes, please,” Young Iain begged too.

Laurie urged the lads into jackets and the entire family trudged out into the snowy garden. Patrick flicked a switch. Light illuminated the area, making the snow sparkle. The lads fell onto their backs in the snow, waving their arms and legs. The imprints left behind were the images of angels. Laurie made a large one. Patrick’s even larger.

If a once powerful warrior could display a playful side so could she. Isobell dropped onto her back to make an angel of her own. To her utter surprise, Archie threw off his plaide and plopped beside her in naught but his trews and leine. As they spread their arms to make angel wings their fingers touched. Their gazes met. A thrill shot through her.

Archie’s eyes flared. He must have felt it too.

She couldn’t let the moment pass without making one last memory with him. Isobell squeezed his fingers. “Come with me. I ken a special place.”

Archie grabbed his plaide and they slipped away from the others frolicking in the snow. She guided him through the inn’s garden, along the well-trodden woodland trail, through the meadow and into Laurie’s garden and the privacy of the orchid room. Was doubtful the family or guests would visit on this most special of nights—Christmas Eve.

“Why have you brought me here?” he asked.

“Why do you think?” She hoped her smile appeared sensual.

He raised a brow. She pressed against him, grasped his hands and pulled his arms around her, placing them on her bum. His response, a firm squeeze, urged her on. Stretching up onto the balls of her feet, she leaned in and kissed him as sweetly, as passionately, as her heart demanded.

A rough sound erupted from deep within his throat, a growl, a demand, and the kiss intensified into a meeting of mouths and tongues, wet and wild. Isobell’s breath came from Archie and his from her. When the fever calmed, forehead resting against forehead, they gasped for air.

“So, that is your answer, lass?”

“Oh, aye!” She melted against him.

He glanced around the small glass chamber then stepped away. He grabbed a cushion from one of the chairs and tossed it on the floor. Then another and another. Using all the cushions, he made a fine bed.

Archie dropped onto the cushions, tested their comfort then offered an inviting hand. “Join me.”

She fell on knees on the cushions beside him. Suddenly feeling shy, she tentatively touched his smooth cheek. She had no experience seducing a man.

Archibald wrinkled his nose in the sweetest way. “What?”

“You have been with so many other women. I dinnae ken…”

“Nae so many.”

“But Da said—”

“He said a lot of things that were not true. Aye?”

“Aye.” She lowered her gaze embarrassed for having believed all the lies.

Archie slid a palm over her hair and down an arm. “I will be gentle.”

~~()~~

Ahhh. Romance on Christmas eve. So nice. Oh, look, another couple has joined us.


E-book available from Amazon,
Amazon UKApple,
  Smashwords, kobo, and Barnes&Noble.
Trade paperback available
at AmazonBAM, and Barnes&Noble.
Meet Kimberly and Robert from Sea Panther. Kimberly is running from a hit man and has taken a crew position on a yacht, unknowing of the captain's dark secret. Robert is a vampire-shifter looking for a cure. On Christmas eve they sail into New Bern North Carolina and head for the Irish pub in town, and Kimberly...

~~()~~

A drunk banged into the table and broke the steamy spell holding Kimberly and Robert enthralled. She choked on a flat laugh. He cleared his throat.

The awkward moment thickened the air. Made it hard to breathe.

Kimberly twitched her nose. Now would be a good time to find a hidey-hole to crawl into. Perspiration glazed the skin between her breasts. God, her face must be the color of a ripe strawberry.

“I overheard you,” Robert said.

“Did you?” Just great.

“Aye.” His gaze dropped to the tabletop. He picked up a drink stirrer and fiddled with it.

Mesmerized, she watched large fingers nimbly tie the thin strip of plastic into a bowline knot. The naughty image of him using the same knot to tie a silk scarf around her wrists flashed in her mind. Where had that idea come from?

“What the rest of the crew has been trying hard not to tell you is I have a rare blood disease.” Her wayward thought splintered at the unemotional statement of fact.

She gazed into his eyes, searching for something empathetic to say.

“I have to take it easy until my doctors find a donor with the right DNA makeup to help me. That is why I sleep a lot.”

“I’m sorry.” Oh, that sounded lame. Worse yet, she’d been thinking about sex. Kinky sex. My God, what had come over her lately? She’d never thought of having that kind of sex with Jason. Heat rose from toes to face. Thank God Robert couldn’t read minds. She reached for her mug, but it was empty.

“Dance with me?” He grasped her hand.

She nodded, and followed him onto the dance floor. “When they find a donor, will they be able to make you well?”

His eyes clouded. “I hope so.”

So did she.

He tucked her close, held her tight, smooth cheek against the rasp of whiskers, as they swayed with the other couples to the sweet melody of an Irish love song. She embraced hard muscle as she wrapped her arms around him.

How could a virile man like Robert be critically ill?

When the song ended, she pulled away, feeling awkward. He seemed uncomfortable too. They returned to the booth at the same time as the twins.

The moment Robert sat, his cell phone buzzed. He grabbed it from his belt. “Aye.” A dark expression hardened his features. “Do what you can. Tell Colin to be ready to motor out and set sail as soon as we arrive.”

Alarm pinched. Something bad must have happened.

He returned the phone to his belt and pulled her to her feet.

“What’s up?” Davey asked.

“We have trouble.” Robert pushed Kimberly through the crowd toward the back door. Davey and John followed. Once they were out in the night air, Robert answered Davey’s question, “It appears Miss Scot is wanted by the sheriff’s department.”

Kimberly wanted to explain, but he cut her off.

“Colin is stalling the deputies, which will buy us some time but not much. You two…” He directed an intense stare at the twins. “Go to the boat and make ready to cast off on Colin’s order. I will borrow a launch, and we will rendezvous offshore.”

John and Davey disappeared into the shadows.

“Come.” Robert tugged on her arm.

They ran down the back alley away from the Christmas gaiety. By the time they reached the outskirts of town, Kimberly panted for breath. She still hadn’t figured out how to explain the situation. “Captain, I—”

“Just answer one question. Did you break the law?”

“No.” She shook her head with force. “Definitely not.”

“Then you can explain later. Now, we need to hurry.” He led her behind a waterfront hotel. They jogged across the manicured lawn to a private dock with a Zodiac tied to it. Luck was with them. Keys dangled from the ignition.

The inflatable boat raced out into the dark night. When the town with its twinkling lights looked like a miniature holiday village, Robert idled the engine, and they drifted.

“I’m sorry. I’ve done nothing wrong.” Kimberly found it hard to believe the mess that had caught up with her.

~~()~~

Perhaps not the best Christmas eve, but romance is in the air and their happily-ever-after is coming. That is the thing I love about romance novels. There is always a happily-ever-after. Thanks for visiting with me and my characters. Now for a contest...



Dawn Marie's Holiday Giveaway







For a chance to snag one of these lovely holiday key chains crafted by Nicole Laverdure, just leave a comment below with your favorite holiday activity. One name will be drawn after the hop has ended. Good luck!







Grand Prize Giveaway
Thanks for participating in the Winter Warm-Up blog hop. Be sure to check out: Hops with Heart for future blog hops. Now, hop along to some of the other participating blogs...

~Dawn Marie




65 comments:

  1. my fave winter activity was always taking a nice walk on a crisp winter afternoon :)

    parisfan_ca@yahoo.com

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    1. Sounds nice, Laurie. My whole family used to go for a long walk after Christmas dinner and then come home for dessert. Enjoy the holiday!

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  2. My favorite holiday activity is wrapping presents!!

    dstarsong@yahoo.com

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    1. That is fun, Deniz. I love to wrap too and make each gift a bit special with an item attached to the top--usually a Christmas ornament. Happy holidays!

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  3. I love shopping for just the right gift and wrapping presents. :-)

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    1. Hi, Cathy! I enjoy shopping if it is really early in the season. :) Enjoy the season!

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  4. Your Highland book excerpt was awesome! We have a Christmas tradition of making candy and cookies for the holidays. It was always so much fun to eat ourselves sick on cookie dough when we were kids. :D

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    1. Thank you, Allison. Love cookies. My dad used to call me the cookie monster. :) Today we're making cranberry rugelach. My husband's favorite. Have a merry Christmas!

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  5. Decorating the tree with my littles is my favorite.

    cepal13@yahoo.com

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    1. Oh, Corissa, decorating the tree with wee ones is so much fun. Watching them is a true joy. Happy holidays!

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  6. My favorite holiday activity is exchanging gifts!!I Love watching my loved ones eyes light up as they open gifts someone so lovingly picked out

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    1. Oh and Thank you Dawn-Have a VERY Merry Christmas :)

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  7. My son and I make ornaments every year so gathering supplies and working on them each evening has definitely become something I look forward to. Thank you for the chance to enter! wendynjason04 at gmail dot com

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    1. Hi, Wendy. That sounds like fun and quality time. My mom made ornaments every year and gave them to the children and later the grandchildren. Each of those ornaments are special to me. Have a wonderful holiday season!

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  8. Getting together with my mom, SIL and her mom and baking!!! So much fun and of course the baked goods are delicious! Thanks for the chance, my email is Tanyamarieward (at) Hotmail (dot) com

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    1. Other than the deliciousness ( is that a word?) of the baked goods, the house smells great after baking. A wonderful holiday activity, Tanya. Enjoy the season.

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  9. My favorite part of the christmas holidays is going around looking at all of the decorations and lights. I also enjoy decorating so that others can enjoy them.

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    1. Love all the decorations, Ronda. We plan to go for a drive after dinner on Thursday to check out some specially decorated home. Have a happy holiday.

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  10. My favorite activity is when everyone is gone, the house is quiet. It's just me and the hubby sitting on the couch enjoying each other reliving the fun. And drinking hot chocolate.

    roya-clan@sbcglobal.net

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    1. That sounds romantic, Mary Frances. Very nice! Happy Holidays!

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  11. spending time with my family by the way Dawn Merry Christmas oh and thanks to you and every author that has ever wrote a book without authors we wouldn't be able to read

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  12. rewriting this because i left out something spending time with my family by the way Dawn Merry Christmas oh and thanks to you and every author that hasever wrote a book without authors we wouldn't be able to read my email is LILKIM_2072002@yahoo.com

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    1. Hi, Kimberly! I love sharing my tales. :) Merry Christmas!

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  13. Decorating the tree - my son has so much fun! dythia_99(at)yahoo.com

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    1. I've always enjoyed decorating the tree too. We didn't put up a full size tree this year because we're working on the house, but I have a small Victorian wire tree with all my most precious wee ornaments. Very pretty. Merry Christmas!

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  14. My favorite Christmas activity is making Christmas candies and giving them to my friends and neighbors.

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    1. That sounds yummy, Kathy. I've never tried making candies, just cookies. :) Merry Christmas!

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  15. I love going to the Christmas lights display
    Happy Holidays
    traceyj40@sbcglobal.net

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    1. Hi, Tracey. Love the lights. I so want to go to the display at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden in Richmond, but it is over two hours away. Maybe next year. :) Happy holidays!


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  16. My favorite Christmas activity is going to see the "Lights before Christmas" here at the Toledo Zoo!
    deannankeller@yahoo.com

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    1. A light show at the zoo. Interesting. Sounds like fun. Have a Merry Christmas!

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  17. My favorite holiday activity is driving around and looking at all the lights and decorations. lringel3369(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. That is fun, Lori. My husband just told me about a large display--so we plan to take a drive past the house on Christmas eve, Happy Holidays!

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  18. Handing out Christmas gifts to Homeless veterans with my family

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    1. That is so generous, Elizabeth. Thank you for being so thoughtful. Merry Christmas!

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  19. My favourite holiday activity is baking Christmas cookies with my daughter.

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    1. Love cookies. I'm baking this weekend. Happy Holidays!

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  20. My fav activities is making homemade fudge and cookies with grand kids
    kecasa4@aol.com

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    1. Time spent with grandchildren is so very special. They must love it. Happy holidays, Annie!

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  21. Winter is fave...sky extra blue inthe cold and love the sunsets

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    1. Hi, Dawn! I was a big fan of winter when I used to ski, but not crazy about the cold anymore. Brrrr! But the blue sky and sunsets are wonderful. Enjoy the holiday season.

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  22. I love Christmas Eve playing games with the kids.

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    1. Christmas Eve is always special, Kim. :) When I was a kid we used to get a huge jigsaw puzzle and put it together as a family. Loved that. Merry Christmas!

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  23. Cnnamongirl(at)aol(dot)com
    I always enjoy decorating the tree with my children as we listen to Christmas music.

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    1. Christmas music is all inspiring, Deanne. I play it every afternoon during the holiday season. Merry Christmas!

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  24. I love singing Christmas songs and watching Christmas movies.

    bookaholicholly at gmail dot com

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    1. I wish I could sing, Holly. My voice would send everyone running. :) Merry Christmas!

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  25. Baking cookies on Christmas Eve dawnhagan373@yahoo.com

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    1. It's so nice to do a Christmas activity on Christmas eve. This year, I'm baking a cranberry-apple pie. Baking will make the house smell marvelous. Merry Christmas!

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    1. That sounds like fun. Real animals and all? Merry Christmas!

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  27. Baking and decorating cookies with my children.
    carousel96@hotmail.com

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    1. I always loved to bake cookies with my mom. Enjoy them, Dana. Happy holidays!

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  28. Baking cookies and doing Christmas crafts with my Mom, and nieces and nephews we always have a lot of fun

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    1. my email is crystaley73@yahoo.com Merry Christmas

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  29. my favorite holiday activity is baking . . fudge, man catcher brownies, red velvet cake balls, etc. :)
    jessangil at gmail dot com

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    1. Oh, yum, Jessica. Now I'm hungry. :) Have a happy holiday and enjoy the sweets.

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  30. decorating the tree
    bn100candg at hotmail dot com

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    1. Decorating the tree is always fun. I really enjoy tree-trimming parties. Happy holidays!

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  31. Seeing light displays.lissabob@yahoo.com ty

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    1. The light displays always make me smile, Melissa. Have a wonderful holiday season.

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  32. Hi! Happy holidays! Thank you all for the fun!! Hope you have a blast with your family! My favorite is decorating the tree. My family and i always have a blast! Theres always a lot of laughter and fun stories! :)
    shadowluvs2read(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Decorating the tree is always great fun, Shadow. Enjoy the holiday season.

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  33. I love to drive around and look at Christmas lights.
    sstrode at scrtc dot com

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    1. I was hoping to do some of that tonight, Sherry, but it is raining like crazy here. I'm hoping it will clear later for a light show tour. Happy holidays!

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