Sunday, November 25, 2012

Fyer Family Christmas Traditions~ It's all about the music

I was in one of my FB groups this morning and the subject of Christmas traditions came up. It got me thinking about what my families traditions were and thought I would share. ENJOY!

My family tradition normally starts with pulling out our ornaments the day after Thanksgiving to see what theme we are going to have. One year it was Victorian, one year African, one year Navy and Silver.(We take our themes seriously).We may have to go out to Garden Ridge and pick up additional ornaments or pick out a Christmas theme. (They have the best and largest assortment of ornaments.)

Once we have a theme, we go to the Christmas tree farm or road side seller and pick out a fluffy Fraser Fir. The needles are short and thick, and the branches are kinda limber and waxy feeling. While the merchant prepares the tree, we partake of spicy cider or hot chocolate. They load the tree. Even on the roof, the crisp scent of pine is putting everyone in the Christmas spirit. We get the tree home, I ramble in my desk drawer and pull out the Christmas Mix CD I made, the one everybody loves. The first song has to be The Temptations singing, "Merry Christmas." There is something about hearing Eddie Ruffin singing that song, "In my mind, I want you to be free"  which makes it "officially" Christmas. It like being on Wall Street and having the bell rung. We all sing parts of the song pretending to be the Temptations (LOL!). My favorite parts are the high parts, which I butcher, but, by the end of the song nobody cares. We are all in the spirit.

By this time, have the Christmas tree in the stand, even though my sister is complaining that it's crooked. (but she NEVER gets down there and messes with those hard ass screws which have to be screwed into the trunk of the hand and yes the tree moves a bit!) . Yes, I am salty behind that. I mean, here she is, sitting up eating sweet potato pie and drinking Michelob Ultra while I'm slaving away under that tree...Just because she's the eldest and I am the youngest doesn't mean I'm her slave! "I'm a grown woman with a child of my own...Okay I've said too much, lets just move on. (LOL)

By the time the tree is up, Michael Jackson has seen his momma "Kissing Santa Claus", James Brown has begged Santa to, "Go Straight to the Ghetto", and The Emotions have asked, "What Do The Lonely Do At Christmas?"  Yes we love a soulful Christmas. After the tree is up, we go to the classics. Aaron Neville croons "Please come home for Christmas." and we all ask, "Whatever happened to Aaron Neville? Somebody says, "He's still alive." (LOL) and I lament over how I had such a big crush on him when I was a girl. They all make fun of that before going to the next thing. The lights are half the way up by the time Otis Redding  is singing " Merry Christmas Baby."  At that point we are all sitting on the couch or the floor cause, lets face it, we are tired and need a food break.

We  go get plates of Thanksgiving left overs and nuk them in the microwave, I have to "touch" the collard greens to make sure they are heated all the way through because I HATE sitting down and finding out my collard greens have a cold spot :-) By now I've put on Nat King Coles "Christmas song". Everybody gets all quiet because you have to listen to Nat with "Reverence" it's tradition! By the end of that song (because it is a long song), we are all having slices of sweet potato pie or my famous Rum cake. The "Itis" is trying to set in and we are only part of the way through. Somebody has turned on a TV, someone has gotten a call/text and leaves the room. That's when you have two groups left: the kids and the "Die-Hard" Christmas traditionalist. We NEVER say die.(LOL)
Eartha Kitt comes on purring "Santa Baby" and both groups get into it. what girl doesn't like " a little decoration bought at Tiffany".  I've hit my decorating stride by the time Lena Horne walks us through a "Winter Wonderland". We are putting those silver hangers on the ornaments when we realize we have more ornaments then we do hangers! Some kid with true grit, goes on recon for paper clips. The kid  comes back with enough for the rest of the ornaments thus saving the day and earning them the right to put the angel on top of the tree.

By the time all of the ornaments are on and the lights are on. The kids and the "Die Hards" are making such a ruckus,  the stragglers come back in. One of them ALWAYS wants to move an ornament because there are "Too many on that branch."  so they go about moving it a mear two branches over, where it is still, in my humble opinion ( IMHO) too close to the others, but, we let it slide because, although they have been laid up on their cell phones for an hour drinking Michelob Ultra instead of doing any real work, we will let them have this moment, because it's family, and we are just happy they were able to make it this year. The angel goes on top of the tree as Nancy Wilson asks "What Are You Doing New Years Eve?". Someone wants to know why the angel has on a leopard printed dress trimmed in fur and is holding a fan made out of feathers. I reply, "Because it's MY angel and I think she looks awesome! If you want something else, buy it yourself and put it on YOUR tree."  Every body looks around and somebody brings me a glass of egg nog and pats me on the back to pacify me because I am the baby of the family, and they know I am tired and about to get out on the ledge.

Luther comes on singing, "Have Your Self a Merry Christmas" and we all laments on how he died too soon while looking at our amazing tree. Somebody says something about going to the mall or to the movies. We all start getting ready to go. I am the last to leave, I grab the last slice of sweet potato pie(because I deserve it!), look at the tree one more time, with pride, and head on out.

That's my family tradition or at least that's how it usually happens. It's all about the music with us. Fun, family and stories shared. I guess that's why Christmas is my favorite holiday. Stay tuned to my blog. I will share our cooking traditions! I'm still living down that time I put "Craisins" in my momma's, dressing!

~Gynger Fyer~ The Romance Arsonist!

Friday, November 16, 2012

My new book Thanksgiving Secrets [EBOOK] is out at Beautiful Trouble Publishing, LLC

Will looked over to the grill directly across from his into the slanted brown eyes of the sexiest woman he’d ever seen. She was wearing a tight red shirt, blue jean cut-off shorts and a red baseball cap. Her hair was long, dark brown with light highlights. She had it pulled through the loop of her hat in a ponytail down her back. Her skin was a golden brown like toffee and she was a big girl. She had to be at least five feet nine because in platform sandals she was nearly at eye level with him. Not many girls had ever come close to looking him in the eye. He’d seen her before but didn’t know who she was or at least he hadn’t until just before the cook-off. That’s when she’d strutted up to him and stood before him with her arms crossed.

“I want you to know that this ass-whupping you’re about to get isn’t personal.”
He looked at her in disbelief with a smirk on his face. She was standing so close he could see the sparkly flecks in her pink lip gloss. Her lips looked yummy and so did every part of her.

“Excuse me?” was all he could get out.
“It’s about me being a woman and the fact that no woman has ever won this grill off. It has nothing to do with our family history.”

“Wait, what history?”
“You mean to say you don’t know who I am?”
Her southern drawl was like butter melting on a warm biscuit. Hell, he didn’t know her, but he was going to.

“No, I can’t say I’ve had the pleasure, miss…”
“McCall. You might know my daddy, Riley.”
That’s when his world crashed to his feet. Leigh McCall was actually Raleigh McCall, the daughter of his family’s sworn enemy. Next to Big Billie Bob’s Bar-B-Que, there was only one other competitor in Columbia and that was Riley’s Ribs and Chicken. He’d heard his father more than once rant about how the McCalls had tried to steal the Shannessey’s barbecue recipe and call it their own. There was more to it but the name “McCall” was often preceded or followed by the words “no good.”

Will looked her up and down, taking her all in. She was as cool and confident as they came. Her look held no malice so he decided to give her the benefit of the doubt.

“Well, Leigh McCall, if you don’t mind, I’ll let the judges decide the winner. However, I wouldn’t be opposed to a little side bet, just to make things…interesting.”

The look she’d given him said she was interested. Her long, impeccably manicured finger came to her chin and tapped where a sexy cleft lay.

“Although I’ve heard you Shannesseys are poor losers and don’t honor your bets, I suppose I’d be willing to go along.”

He gritted his teeth at her slander of his family, but held his tongue. She had a saucy smirk on her face which told him she was ready for any comment he would make. This was going to be interesting.

“Well, if your barbecue’s as dry as your wit, this should be pretty easy,” he chuckled.

“Very funny, Goliath; just don’t forget to yell timber when you fall.”
With that, she made a move to walk away. He was mesmerized by her. Everything on her body moved when she walked: breast, hip, butt, and thighs. Damn. There was a sensual power in her stride that was attention-grabbing and by the looks she was getting, he wasn’t the only one who noticed.

“Excuse me; I believe we were making a wager.” He rushed on catching up to her in three strides. She stopped and turned back to him with one fist on her curvy hip. She narrowed her eyes.

“All right, Behemoth, what did you have in mind?”
“First of all, my name is WILL and I was thinking of something along the lines of dinner. You win, I’ll cook for you, and if I win, you’ll cook for me.”

She seemed to consider the idea.“ All right, it’s a deal.” She stuck out her hand and he took it.

The shock of their touch surprised him. Her hand was soft, yet firm. Before he knew what he was doing, he had her hand raised it to his mouth and he was kissing the back of it.

Their eyes locked; she blinked a few times and bit her lip. Was that a tremor he felt go up her arm? He looked at her shirt and noticed the evidence of her desire as her hardened nipples pressed against the fabric, like full-on headlights. Lord have mercy. There were cat calls and whistles from his friends at their exchange. He noticed her cheeks redden a bit before she pulled away and quickly went to her grill.

Thanksgiving Secrets [EBOOK] :: All eBooks :: Beautiful Trouble Publishing, LLC

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Readers Appreciation events! What brings you out!

I went to my first ever Reader appreciation event earlier this year in North Carolina. Granted, I've been reading books all of my life. As I got older, I read everything from historical romances and later Interracial(IR) romances. It never occured to me to attend an event. They always seemed like things old women went to. LOL

It was purely by accident that I stumbled upon the Beautiful Trouble Publishing reader appreciation event. I just happened to be on their site one day and saw the announcement. I had been reading works by their writers for nearly two years. The price was right and it was within driving distance. So, I got a ticket for me and my good friend and I went. It was long but I had a blast. I guess you could say I was hooked after that. I went to one recently in VA. I was able to make that one a family trip since my nephew lived there and I hadn't seen him in years. Again It was AWESOME! 

In case you hadn't connected the dots... It was at that first event that I made invaluable connections which allowed me to realize my goal of being a published writer; but it was more than that. I met friends there with whom I still keep in contact.

  • Do you attend reader appreciation events? If not, why? 
  • What do you love about them
  • What would make you go to an event
i am working on adding a calendar to my blog so you can see what's coming up.  Perhaps it will help you plan. 

I hope you attend at least one event this year. There are awesome perks and lets face it, we all need a break from reality every now and then. Why not do something for yourself for a change!

~Gynger Fyer ~ The Romance Arsonist

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Gynger Fyer

Words of Wysdom Wednesday~

I think as women we sometimes give too much up front too soon when we date. Most women go through this at least once in their life time. It's like we give a man a test drive but, we don't know when to bring him back to the lot to see if he has a down payment, or ask if he's just window shopping. I think it's best to limit how much you show a guy on the test drive. Don't 
let him open it up like he's on the Audobon. Keep him at the right speed limit, show him the features and then see if he's ready to make such an expensive purchase because if he isn't, someone else is. The last thing you want to be is the test drive chick, high on miles and sold at a discount! #knowyourworth

~Gynger "Settin The World On" Fyer
The Romance Arsonist

Gynger Fyer

Yes Your's truly:The Romance Arsonist , strikes again with my next story THANKSGIVING SECRETS!!!!

“Out of all the girls at Clemson, why in the hell did he have to fall for the one he wasn’t supposed to have?”~William Robert Shannessey, Jr.

Raleigh “Leigh” McCall knows falling in love with Will Shannessey is a bad idea. Their families are like the Hatfields and McCoys of barbecue in Columbia, South Carolina. It’s not like they planned it; who plans to sleep with the enemy?But that’s just what happened one fall day at Clemson University after a barbecue cook-off.

Will knew he couldn’t just walk up to his dad, Big Billy Bob Shannessey, and tell him he was head over heels in love with the daughter of Riley McCall of Riley’s Rib and Chicken (aka “The Traitor”), and that he’d been dating her for over two years…not unless he had a death wish and wanted to be unemployed.

At the same time, Leigh is past ready to spill the beans to their parents.
After all, by her estimation it’s been exactly “two years, nine months and two days!” Will knows how much the holidays mean to Leigh, affectionately known as his “cocoa puff”.

What’s a man to do when he’s caught between the woman he loves and the father who holds his future in his hands?

Secrets abound in this hilarious Thanksgiving tale of love, life and barbecue! Pull up to the table and let me fix you a plate! This is going to be finger-licking good!