Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas in Australia: X-mas Guest Post and Giveaway with Anna Campbell

Christmas Upside Down! 
Actually, who’s to say that you guys aren’t upside down and we Aussie are the right way up?

Hi Rita! All the best of the season to you and yours! I love the idea of doing a series of pieces on special Christmas memories here on Not Another Romance Blog.

I’ve only experienced one Northern Hemisphere Christmas – way back in the Dark Ages, aka 1985, when I lived in London. It was exactly like the Christmases that still feature on our Christmas cards here. You know, snow and church bells and robins in frosty landscapes and people rugged up against the bitter cold.

And it didn’t feel like Christmas to me at all!

All we girls in our apartment tried to make it a real Christmas, we really did. A couple of us went to the midnight service at St Paul’s cathedral (sadly so crowded you couldn’t see anything although you could hear the heavenly music from the choir), we cooked a turkey (and nearly came to blows over how to do it!) and heated up a Marks and Spencer plum pudding, we even crowded into the downstairs neighbor’s place to watch the Queen’s Christmas message.

But it just wasn’t…right.

For Aussies, Christmas means long summer days and heat and summer fruit. When I was a kid, summer was the only time you could get watermelon (it’s now available all year and it’s seedless and, you know, it doesn’t taste nearly as good as it used to!). And mangoes! Mangoes are the taste of an Australian summer.

Christmas means stuffing yourself silly with a turkey (that has previously been stuffed silly) and plum pudding even though it’s about 100 degrees outside and anyone with any sense would be eating ice-cream and salads. It means having family around and listening to the stories you’ve heard a million times before – but everyone’s too hot to shift out of earshot.

It means looking forward to a day of doing absolutely nothing (except continue the digestion process and maybe pick at the mountains of leftovers) as we all flop in front of the TV and watch the Boxing Day cricket match after Christmas Day. Or heading for the beach to cool off.
It also means swearing that next year, we’ll all eat something sensible like seafood or a barbecue instead of this huge stodgy meal designed for the middle of an English winter.

Then next year, of course, it’s turkey and pork and ham and gravy and baked veg and all the glorious stodge once again!

More info in  Author Preview
I wish you all a very happy Christmas (or whatever holiday you celebrate at this time of year).  
So have you ever experienced a Christmas that just wasn’t your traditional celebration? How did it feel?
I’d love to hear your stories. And in turn share one of mine! One lucky commenter will receive a signed copy of my latest release MY RECKLESS SURRENDER! Good luck! 
--
~*~Giveaway Details~*~
Anna Campbell has generously offered to giveaway a signed copy of her latest release, 'My Reckless Surrender' to one (1) lucky commenter. Follow the guidelines below and comment for your chance to win! The giveaway will end on Thursday, December 23rd, 2010 at 11:59:00 PM. The winner will be announced on Christmas Eve and contacted via email shortly after. 

Giveaway Guidelines: To be entered in the giveaway all you have to do is leave a comment and either answer Anna's question or leave one of your own!
*Make sure to include your email address (NO EMAIL= INVALID ENTRY)

For Extra Entries (do one or more of the following for extra shots at winning):
+2 'Like' Anna's Facebook Fan Page
+2 'Like'  The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook
+4 Spread the word: Tweet on Twitter, Post a Facebook status, or blog about this guest post and giveaway (provide a link in you entry comment)
+5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower

(A how-to guide for providing links to specific Facebook and Twitter status': here)

-Tell me in your comment which extra entries you are entitled to or they won't count!
--
Hope you enjoyed today's X-mas Guest Post from Anna Campbell in:

53 comments:

  1. sounds like a great book!
    +2 Like Not another romance blog on fb

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey, thanks, Elizabeth! Thanks for checking out the blog.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello Anna

    As you already know I love your books but once again thank you for another great chance to win one of your books !! I am really dying to read this book!

    +2 'Like' Anna's Facebook Fan Page

    +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook

    +4 Spread the word: Facebook status

    +5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower

    Have great day
    Your Fan
    Desere

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh no I forgot to include my email address I am so sorry Anna my email address is desere_steenberg@yahoo.com I hope it will be seen as a valid entry please !

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Anna, I love your books. And I'd like a chance to win a signed copy of the MY RECKLESS SURRENDER.

    I already "Like" your fan page on FB so I've "Liked" Not Another Romance Blog page. I've become a "Follower" on the blog. And I've tweeted and FB status updated with this post!

    Our Christmas is almost same as Australian's because we share the summer weather. So outside picnics, lovos, and BBQ's!

    nas_dean@ ymail. com

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi Anna, I think I missed this? Sorry, I didn't see it until now and I'm listening to a conference all right now LOL.
    I have given my daughter my list of books and yours are there.
    I do LIKE your page in FB as you know ;)
    I just clicked LIKE for "Not another Romance Blog" and will become a follower as soon as I can figure it out hehehe...
    Peace and good luck to all. I hope I win again Anna ;)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Done! I'm a follower now too. I was having problems with my google account. And now I posted something but I don't see it here. I don't know what I did LOL

    ReplyDelete
  8. Hi Anna, like you I have spent most of my Christmases in Australia where it is usually hot and humid on Christmas Day.
    I have also spent Christmas in both England and the US and boy does the weather make a difference! (I have to confess I love Christmas in the cold...)
    Christmas in Australia kicks off the long summer vacation which lends a relaxed feel to the celebration--except to the poor cooks slaving in the hot kitchen cooking that traditional northern hemisphere feast (that my English husband insists on!) For my "day job" I edit a supermarket food magazine and the trend is definitely towards a full-on feast but cooked in the barbecue--turkey (Australians have that for Christmas, as Thanksgiving is not celebrated), ham, the lot, with salads on the side.
    Oh, and how I really know I'm in Australia for Christmas? The sound of cicadas.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Sorry, I forgot my email address ooopppsss LOL

    tonacolorado@hotmail.com I prefer this one to the gmail, normally I check my hotmail everyday. And I hope this is my last comment ;)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Hi there Anna. Thanks for the chance to win your book. Love all of your books. I haven't really ever strayed away from a traditional Christmas, not that I wouldn't mind trying though.

    iqb99@yahoo.com
    +2 Anna on Facebook
    +2 NARB on facebook
    +5 Follower

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi Desere! Great to see you here. I had fun talking about Christmas Down Under. It's so different to the way many American friends celebrate the day. Actually it's REALLY hot here today so it's starting to feel a lot like Christmas! Good luck in the draw.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Nas, it's odd, though, how the Northern Hemisphere symbols still predominate even though our Christmas has nothing to do with snow and stuff, isn't it? Hope you and yours have a wonderful Christmas and thanks so much for saying you love the books. Good luck in the draw!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ha ha, Tona! You never know your luck in the big city. Thanks so much for saying nice things about the books. Let's hope Santa's feeling romantic. Hmm, not sure about a fat man dressed in red invading my house in the middle of the night in that case! Now if it was David Boreanaz, I mightn't mind! Good luck in the draw!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Kandy, how interesting about the cicadas. I hadn't thought of them but of course you're right. On a hot midsummers day here, they're absolutely deafening. You wouldn't think something that small could make so much noise. Thanks so much for swinging by! Hope you and your family have a wonderful Christmas.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Oh, and by the way, Tona, this just went up today and it's going for a few days. You're definitely in time to be in the draw.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Danielle, I think one of the reasons I love the trad Christmas dinner (although I'm with Kandy - slaving in a hot kitchen in sultry weather is the pits!) - is that that's the only time of the year we really eat that stuff. It makes it so special. Thanks for saying you love the books! Hope your Christmas is wonderful, however you celebrate it!

    ReplyDelete
  17. I have never experinced a different Christmas than the reg. American Christmas! It is usually cold and rainy since it does not snow much on the Oregon Coast. We always open gifts from Santa Claus on Christmas morning and have a wonderful buffet with a yummy minestroni soup. I guess the soup part is different. We are not big Turkey eaters! Anyway, thanks for sharing and Happy Holidays!

    evjochum@aol.com

    +2 Like Anna Campbell on FB
    +2 Like NARB Blog on FB
    +5 Folower

    ReplyDelete
  18. Hu Anna
    I had a great chuckle at your Northern hemisphere Christmas! I guess Christmas is "imprinted" on all of us from a very young age and anything so vastly different from what we grew up with is just "not quite right"! I'm sure that goes for any of our Northern cousins who visit DownUnder for December.

    Our most "different" Christmas was the year Dad did a hangi in the back yard. It's a Maori earth oven and the food cooked that way is just fabulous.

    I think the best Christmases were the ones at my grandparents - there were so many adults around that we never had to do the dishes! But we did have to sit on the back steps and shell the peas. We had to whistle while we did it so there were still some peas left for the pot! The meat was always roast lamb and roast chicken - Grandad was a fat-lamb buyer for a freezing works and the chicken was a hapless hen from the chook yard out the back.

    If the weather was kind, the wind wasn't a nor'wester!

    Don't put me in the draw for MRS - I have my copy sitting on the shelf behind me! But I will say that your winner will be in for a fabulous Christmas treat!
    Merry Christmas, Anna!
    :)
    Sharon

    ReplyDelete
  19. I am lucky that I have had our traditional southern Christmas every year. Of course over the yrs it has become smaller.

    +2 'Like' Anna's Facebook Fan Page(old fan)(@Brenda Hill)
    +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook(@Brenda Hill)
    +4 Spread the word: Tweet on Twitter
    http://twitter.com/misskallie2000/status/14180924765773824
    +4 Post a Facebook status(@Brenda Hill)
    http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/permalink.php?story_fbid=118301691568334&id=1424713340
    +5 Follower via GFC

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot con

    ReplyDelete
  20. The first time I went to my boyfriend's family Christmas dinner, I was astounded by the veggie: a Velveeta covered head of cauliflower. In the subsequent dinners, I'd bring a salad or steamed veggies, something that was more of a real veggie dish. I know that the cauliflower with cheese is a traditional dish for his family, but to me it was a bit shocking. The ambrosia salad was a bit odd, too.

    ironss[at]gmail.com
    +2 Like Anna's Facebook Fan Page (S G-S Tieh)
    +2 Like The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog (S G-S Tieh)
    +5 Follower

    ReplyDelete
  21. Johanna, I love to hear about the different way everyone celebrates Christmas. I think one day it would be really fun to have a REAL white Christmas. You know, go somewhere like Sweden or Austria and see the snow sparkling. Friends of mine had Christmas in Salzburg and had a horsedrawn ride through the snow with bells. It sounded just glorious.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Ah, Miss Sharon, aren't you lovely, saying such nice things about MY RECKLESS SURRENDER? Thank you! Laughed at the fat lamb buyer. I think that's a bit prejudicial. I think the lamb's just got big bones. It's not fat at all! Love your memories of Christmas. We went to a volcanic valley that is still in the hands of its Maori owners when I was in NZ. It's a fascinating culture! They sang that beautiful song that's something like te ani ani mara. Do you know the one I mean. It's not the Maori Farewell that my mother used to love so much. Anyway, it gave me goosebumps, it was so lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Miss Kallie, our family Christmas fluctuates every year. It's nice to have the crowds around but it's also nice to have something more intimate. Hmm, basically as long as there's something roasted and nice gravy, I don't mind. Oh, man, I'm so SHALLOW!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Sheree, laughed at the culture clash with your boyfriend's family. It happens every time you go somewhere else for Christmas, doesn't it? I hope you and yours have a wonderful (and vegetable-filled!) Christmas! Thanks for all the support this year. It's always lovely to see you.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Hello, lovely Anna! I'm not entering your contest as I already have your fabulous MRS.

    I would love a seafood feast of prawns and oysters. Unfortunately, my hubby is allergic to both, so it's a hot lunch for us.

    I've also spent only one Christmas in the Northern Hemisphere--in Los Angeles. No snow, but plenty of traditional Chrissy food and carolers serenading the neighbourhood.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Oh, how interesting about the Los Angeles Christmas, Vanessa. And thank you for saying lovely things about MY RECKLESS SURRENDER. I love a good seafood feast - as you know! What a pity about dh not liking the crabby things!

    ReplyDelete
  27. He doesn't like a crabby me, either, Anna. LOL!

    ReplyDelete
  28. LOL about the lamb-size thing, Anna! But, seriously, that was his title - and I remember going out to the farms with him and sitting on the fence as he plunged his hand into the thick wool on their backs to assess them then marking them with raddle to either buy or reject them!

    I think that song would have been Po Karekare Ana - it's a gorgeous, haunting love song! It gives me goosebumps too...

    Here it is sung by Dame Kiri Te Kanawa...

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjivKwGPWe0&feature=related

    :)
    Sharon

    ReplyDelete
  29. LOL, your post made me laugh, Anna, since even after living in Australia for 12 years I can't get used to how hot and sunny it is at Christmas!! I hate the cold, but it just doesn't feel right when it's not dark by 4 pm, and the wind isn't trying to freeze my bones!

    You know how much I love your books and I have MRS waiting in my tbr pile. Can't wait to indulge :-)

    ReplyDelete
  30. Thank you so much Anna and I hope it cools down a little over there ! Merry Christmas to you and your family !

    ReplyDelete
  31. Oh, V, you're lovely even when you're crabby!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Sharon's that's exactly the song. SOOO beautiful. Makes me want to cry. Found another lovely Kiri version that she sang for the Millennium - check out the wonderful birdsong in the background! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPvyZfH8OZM&feature=related

    ReplyDelete
  33. Thanks, Christina! Hope you enjoy MRS!!! Yeah, it's odd how the REAL Christmas is whatever we grew up with, isn't it? Thanks for swinging by!

    ReplyDelete
  34. Lovely so far this morning, Desere. Mind you, it's still very early. Thanks for the Christmas wishes. Right back atcha!

    ReplyDelete
  35. i think my most unusual Christmas that didn't feel like Christmas was when I was living in Key West, Fla. After growing up in the midwest with snow, it was amazing to be warm enough out that at the most we only needed a sweater at night. Sunny skies and palm trees were so different from back home.

    ReplyDelete
  36. Hi Anna
    Nice to see you here!!!
    We did the beach bbq Christmas once...and never again!!!!!!
    Even though it was beautiful to enjoy the day and swim and lounge about, sand got into EVERYTHING LOL
    So we are back too doing a traditional Christmas meal with all the trappings in the stifling heat :-)
    +2 'Like' Anna's Facebook Fan Page
    +5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower
    +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook
    Total = 9
    Thanks for the chance
    Cath
    cbcowley@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  37. Peggy, Christmas in Florida sounds a bit like Christmas in Queensland in Australia where I'm from. Maybe a little chillier because it's midwinter over there.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Ha ha, Cath, we always used to talk about doing something different but we never did. I think the groans and moans when everybody had eaten too much in that awful heat were part of the fun! Hope you have a fun turkey day!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Christmas in Australia sounds different, but interesting.Thanks for sharing that with us!

    +2 like Anna's fb fan page

    +2 like the Not Another Romance blog on fb

    +4 posted on twitter (http://twitter.com/#!/lgm52/status/14689319625166848)

    +4 posted on fb (http://www.facebook.com/?ref=home#!/permalink.php?story_fbid=184191964931212&id=636242481)

    +5 follow via gfc

    lgm52@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. LGM, my pleasure. When Rita and I were talking about the post, she said that people would be interested to hear about Christmas in the middle of summer! Good luck in the draw.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Worst one I can think of, is when my father was in the hospital after two strokes. Not much to celebrate, but he has improved he can walk and talk now, but he has vascular Dementia, because of the strokes. But he is still with us, preparing for another Christmas. A traditional on this year.
    Win or lose I will always buy your books.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Oh, Debra, that's tough! For everyone involved. Big hugs. I hope you have a wonderful family Christmas. And thanks for saying such lovely things about the books!

    ReplyDelete
  43. I love your story Anna, my dream is to have a snowy Christmas one year, but only when my kids are all grown up. For me, when I married my husband his family every year had a 'cold Christmas' and I was used to the hot roast pork and chicken etc. For years we loaded up the kids and went to lunch with my parents and then dinner with his. Finally we had 4 children of our own 12 years ago and we said no more. Now we have 'our traditional' christmas in an air conditioned kitchen LOL. Then we visit the relly's on Boxing day. Now it feels like Christmas! This year we will have our first Grandchild as well which is very exciting. But you are right, in Australia, it doesn't feel like Christmas unless the sweat is dripping off you. Although the one thing we do differently is eat lots of cold deserts, such as cheesecake and of course pavlova and triffle and ...

    Hope you have a fantastic Christmas! I'd love to win a copy of the book. qohe at bigpond dot com

    ReplyDelete
  44. I'm about to go down to Sydney to have an early family Christmas on this unusually cold summer Sunday and then next week I'm off to Mulumbimby on the NSW far north coast. I hope to throw myself into the water at Byron Bay. I'll be staying with friends who are all vegetarians and vegans so that will be an interesting experience! Have a great Christmas Anna! I've already devoured your MRS.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Alaine, love your Christmas stories! I hear you on deciding enough is enough. Luckily my brother married a girl from a Danish family and they do their big celebrations on Christmas Eve. Makes the whole Christmas Day thing much easier! I must say we've given up on plum pudding the last few years too. Although I used to love it!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Wow, vegan and vegetarian, Keziah! Nah, it's carnivore all the way here! Hope you have a lovely day today - it's a little cooler up here too although I suspect it will be sultry before it's done. We've had quite wild weather up here the last few days. Big storms! Byron Bay should be just lovely! Hope you have a wonderful Christmas. And thanks for picking up MRS!

    ReplyDelete
  47. I was out of my element one Christmas when we traveled to Florida from our home in NY to visit our daughter who had just moved there. No snow so it hardly felt like the Christmas card view but on Christmas day there was a cold snap and the temps plummeted to the low 30's. The electric went out in daughter's apartment so we couldn't cook the roast or anything else and we were freezing. Just like in the movie A CHRISTMAS STORY, the chinese restaurant was open and doing a brisk business because they had a generator. We still talk about that wonderful, crazy Christmas.
    follower +5
    salvagin@verizon.net

    ReplyDelete
  48. Dot, that sounds like a fun Christmas! I remember one Christmas where we were buckled down waiting for a cyclone to hit at the seaside resort where my family were staying. A cyclone is basically an Aussie hurricane. Scary! I think we ate Christmas lunch that night - the power went off during the day.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Hey, thanks, Rita and everybody, for the wonderfully warm welcome. Actually Christmas in Australia this year looks like it's going to be wet and cold! Clearly I jinxed myself with all that talk of sunshine! I hope wherever you are and whatever you do, you have a wonderful festive season and I wish you all the best for 2011.

    Oh, and don't forget to check back to see who won the signed copy of MY RECKLESS SURRENDER!

    ReplyDelete
  50. i spent my christmas last year at the office working :( so i missed my yearly christmas eve family dinner and mass ( i felt sorry for myself) that's why this year when september came, i already filed for a leave on christmas eve :)))

    i love my reckless surrender! Merry Christmas Anna <3

    + fan of both anna's page and notanotheromance fb page.

    ReplyDelete
  51. sorry forgot to put my email add.

    aldayrcs@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  52. We have spent every Christmas with our family, so we haven't experienced any traditions other than our own. This year we will be celebrating the holidays remembering my sister and what an important part of our lives that she was.

    +2 fan NARB
    +5 already a follower

    ReplyDelete
  53. Margaret Murray-EvansDecember 23, 2012 at 10:28 AM

    Just wanted to say I love your books and to wish you the best of the holidays. MERRY CHRISTMAS and more great reading in 2013!
    Facebook- your fan and NARB
    email - murmeme47@ Aol.com

    ReplyDelete

 

Site Beautified by Barbara ~ Back To Top