Tuesday, December 14, 2010

"What Makes Christmas Special at the DiPasqua's": X-mas Guest Post and Giveaway with Lila DiPasqua

The things that make Christmas Special …at the DiPasqua’s! 
   It’s no secret that the books in my Fiery Tales series are based on fairy tales. Classic fairy tales with my own sensual twists, to be precise. Oh, but that’s not all! I’ve even set them in the very time and place when the genre of fairy tales was born! Yup, during the time period when the creator of THE TALES OF MOTHER GOOSE—17th century French lawyer/writer Charles Perrault first brought the world Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty, to name a few.
He lived during a time that was as elegant and refined as Regency England—in the reign of the Sun King. Now that was one flashy monarch! He did everything on a grand scale. Don’t believe me? Check out the home he had constructed for himself—the opulent Palace of Versailles!
Christmas during the 17th century was strictly a religious holiday. The King and the royal family spent most of the day at mass. Gifts were exchanged in January, on the 12th night. Oh, and there was no Christmas tree. Christmas trees were a German tradition.
As much as I love this time period—and I do so adore it!—I just couldn’t imagine Christmas without a tree. Or five. *winks*

Here is a list of the *must-haves* every Christmas at our home:
    Funky Red Tree Mr.DiPasqua Got
  1. Christmas trees! (If you don’t count the funky red ones my husband bought, we have 3).  The two smaller trees are about five feet tall.  The larges one stands near the fireplace—10 feet high—with a foot-tall angel adorning the top.  It isn’t easy getting her placed safely each year.  The kids and I stand around the tree, arms out, ready to catch the angel in case she topples while hubby stands on a chair and tries to place her on top.
The Largest DiPasqua Tree
    1. Ornaments.  TONS of them. Confession time: I have an obsession with Christmas ornaments.  I make them.  I buy them.  I get them as gifts (my birthday is less than a month before Christmas). In truth, I have A LOT of Christmas ornaments, thus the need for a lot of trees. :)  My husband, children and I enjoy traveling.  Everywhere we go, we buy a Christmas ornament to bring home for our tree.  It’s a wonderful keepsake and a tradition!  Every year when we decorate the tree and pull out these ornaments, we get to remember our trips and the fun we had.   
      Some Christmas Ornaments from the DiPasqua's Travels
    1. Wreaths, garland and manger. Oh, my! The rest of our home is decorated for the holidays.  Lots of shades of red!  (It’s my favorite color). Oh, and if you’re wondering about the manger, it’s a miniature one. My mother always made sure to put one out every Christmas. I carried on with the tradition.  When the kids were very little, my son (then 3 years old) had a habit of snatching Joseph or Mary from the manger.  Once they went missing for several days. We found them in a shoe box on a shelf too high for our little son to reach. (Now that he’s older, my son tells me wants to be an engineer – much like Adam de Vey in THE PRINCESS IN HIS BED. I think he’ll be good at it.  I still have no clue how he *engineered* that shoebox feat).   
    1. Gingerbread House.  We build one every year!  Since I’m a terrible baker, (Seriously.  Baking is just not my forte) the Gingerbread kits are the only way I could ever make one.  They’re pre-made.  We put the icing and the candy decorations on. (Okay, maybe not *all* the yummy candy makes it onto the Gingerbread House….hehe)
    1. Christmas Carols.  Throughout the month of December, you’ll hear Christmas carols in our home. I love them!  O Holy Night is my favorite. Though the kids and hubby prefer, Grandma Got Run Over By a Reindeer.
    1. Christmas lights on the outside of our home. This is hubby’s domain.  He hangs the lights outside every year…and well, he likes to get creative.  Last year he and our youngest decided it would be a good idea to tie a plastic Santa to our chimney. Santa looked like a hostage.  (Did I mention the neighbors think we’re weird? *snort*) 
    1. Presents—of course!  I’m excellent at hiding them. No one has been able to find them before Christmas, yet—and I’ve got 3 snooping children and an equally snooping hubby always on the hunt for them.  I’d tell you where I place them, but hubby might read this post.  *grins*
    1. Christmas Dinner—a three course affair.  We never skimp on dessert.  Lots of food and love poured into the meal.
    1. Now there is one last thing that makes Christmas complete—family and friends. They are truly what make Christmas special. What would any holiday be without them?

    From the DiPasqua household to yours, I wish you all a wonderful Holiday season.  May 2011 be filled with good health, joy and prosperity for us all! 


    QUESTION: What are some holiday traditions in your household? 

    GIVEAWAY—One lucky commenter will receive a copy of STUD MUFFINS (This book has wonderful muffin recipes and some yummy eye-candy—a double treat!! *smiles*) AND an autographed Cinderella’s slipper ornament (in keeping with the holiday season, the fairy tale theme of my books and my very own sexy Cinderella retelling coming out Aug. 2011 – A MIDNIGHT DANCE)


    ~*~Giveaway Details~*~
    Lila DiPasqua has generously offered to giveaway a copy of STUD MUFFIN and an autographed Cinderella's Slipper Ornament 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 with either an answer to Lila's question or a question 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' Lila'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

    -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 Lila DiPasqua in:


    1. My family has never really had any 'traditions' as such but I have to have the standards....the tree, the decorations, the carols etc but with a huge extended family we all bring a little of our faves to the dinner table. I ALWAYS HAVE TO HAVE A GOOD OLD ENGLISH TRIFLE minus the booze, I like mine with bubbles in a glass:)

    2. Forgot to add my points
      +5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower
      +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook
      Total 7

    3. Going to Granny's house is a big family tradition in our family. We go there on Christmas Eve. Then our own houses on Christmas, everyone shows up.

      I liked on Fan page and Blog page.


    4. @ Cath--I love your family standards! I really like it that everyone brings their favorite foods. Sounds lovely! :)


    5. @Pam Jones--Sounds like a great tradition to me! Thanks for stopping in to share. :)

    6. Hey Lila

      My family traditions are we all get together to open our present on Christmas eve so the kids can get a chance to play with them otherwise they are a handful to in church on Christmas morning !

      After church the whole family gets together again for a big Christmas Lunch with all kinds of our very own homemade dishes.

      Another tradition we have is my son puts up the trees (yes trees we have a white one and a green one ) he is only 5 but decorates them so lovely even if it looks like something froma cartoon (lol) I help here and there, but in the end it is our very own creation !

      And then there are the lights outside ,Reideers , sleighs ,Santa's and a really big tree in the garden ..we don't have snow here so sadly no white Christmas ,so the more lights the better !!And watching the Home Alone Movies !

      The last tradition is we always remember that Christmas is about remembering the birth Jesus and not about the lights ,gifts or parties.And about family ,peach and love .

      Have a great day
      Happy Holidays to you and your family


    7. What a cute contest! (And mouth watering prize!!)
      Ah, let's see. Well, every Christmas eve I visit Dad at Mount Laurel Cemetery and put a wreath on his grave. On the wreath, I tuck in a little card with the funniest joke I heard all year (he always loved a laugh, and so this makes it a little easier for me). On Christmas, we go to my sister's and brother in laws. TONS of people from all corners of the family. My sister started the tradition a few years before of everyone bringing an ornament - preferably one they made. When we arrive we put the ornaments (wrapped neatly) in a large stocking. We have a "secret Santa" type drawing, everyone picks out an ornament.. We guess who made it, and we get to keep the ornament we picked out and add it to our own collections for own trees. Leave it to my sis to make us work on Christmas, but it's so much fun!
      Okee dokee..
      +2 I already liked Lila's FB Fan Page
      +2 Liking Blog on FB
      +4 Spread the word = I just joined twitter. I'm @YasVandermer, so I will be re-tweeting this.
      +5 I became a follower of the blog on twitter!
      YAYY, This was fun, thanks everyone!!

    8. I am so sorry I forgot to include my extras

      +2 'Like' Lila's Facebook Fan Page

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

      +4 Spread the word:Post a Facebook status,

      +5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower

      Have a great day Desere

    9. The Yule Log is a must as is "A Christmas Story". I've gotten quite lazy about everything else. It's easy to let family traditions and such go when there aren't any kids around (my niece and nephew celebrate Hanukkah instead). I do sing Christmas carols around the house and some of the less religious ones to my niece and nephew.

      +2 'Like' Lila's Facebook Fan Page (S G-S Tieh)
      +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog (S G-S Tieh)
      +5 Follower

    10. @Desere --I think your family traditions are WONDERFUL!! It sounds like a very special time each year! Thanks for 'liking' my fan page! Happy holidays to you, too! :)

    11. @Yas---What a touching thing you to every year when visiting your father's grave! I think that's just so lovely. As is the tradition your sister started with the ornaments. I love that, too! So glad you stopped by. Happy holidays! :)

    12. @Sheree--Families are always growing and changing. I think it's wonderful that you've adopted some new traditions during the holidays as well as keeping some of the old ones! Happy Holidays, Sheree! All best in 2011. :)

    13. Our family has traditions that was never planned but just happened! Somehow we always buy the tree early but it doesn't get brought in from the porch until a day or two before Christmas. We never figured out the reason for this but the decorations are covering the house but the tree waits until the last minute!

      Our favorite tradition is putting the ornaments on the tree. When our sons were little they had "special" ornaments they would hand - some as old as from my great=grandmother. Now that the family is grown my husband and I have so much fun remembering funny things our boys did with each ornament we hang on the tree.

    14. Holiday traditions:
      Always Christmas eve at my mother's and Christmas day at my in-laws

    15. This comment has been removed by the author.

    16. My partner and I always watch 'Love Actually' on Christmas Eve, so I guess that's our tradition :) Other than that, our Christmas seems to be different every year!

      I 'like' Lila's facebook page (Kate Ryan) +2

      I 'like' your blog on facebook (Kate Ryan) +2

      I'm following via GFC as Jasmine1485 +5

      I tweeted about it: http://twitter.com/NTFancy/status/16069359759785984 +4

      Kate1485 at hotmail.com

    17. Every year my family and I all gather together on Christmas Eve and have a big buffet dinner. Afterwards we all open gifts. Then I go home and I sit and watch A Christmas Story as many times as I can. I LOVE this movie and to me it just isn't Christmas unless I watch at least two or three times. I just love it. Happy Holiday's Lila.

      +2 'Like' Lila's Facebook Fan Page
      +2 'Like' The 'Not Another Romance Blog' Blog on Facebook
      +5 Become a Follower/ Be a Follower

    18. This comment has been removed by the author.

    19. We always hear mass on christmas eve then Noche Buena with the whole family. There is also a general rule in our family, all those who are single still hang their christmas stockings. there was even a year when my 35 year old uncle hanged his sock beside my 6month old niece's sock :))) it was so hilarious, but rules are rules.

      +2 I already liked Lila's FB Fan Page
      +2 Liking Blog on FB




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