Saturday, September 2, 2017

How to Have a Victorian Christmas - Guest post by Michelle Griep and #Giveaway!!!!

Today we welcome Michelle Griep to my blog. Michelle is very graciously offering a copy of her new book  12 Days At Bleakly Manor to one person who comments.  Please leave contact information. Answer the question in blue, below: 

If you listen hard enough, you just might hear the faint sound of Christmas Carols even though it’s only September. That’s right. . .Christmas is only 16 Sundays from today, folks! It’s never too early to get in the holiday spirit, and I’ve got some great ideas for you to whip up a Victorian Christmas for this December.

A Victorian Craft: Christmas Crackers
The Christmas Cracker was invented by a sweet shop owner named Thomas Smith. He was inspired to up his Christmas sales by an idea he got while visiting Paris. He saw a bon-bon wrapped in tissue paper with both ends twisted and that gave him the idea for a “cracker.” His were filled with candies.

You can make your own cracker by saving toilet paper tubes. Put little treats inside (candy, small toys, or really anything) then wrap the tube in tissue paper and tie it at each end, leaving enough paper for a person to grab onto. Partner up and pull the tubes apart so that they break open, then scramble for the prizes.

A Victorian Parlour Game: The Laughing Game
Victorians loved to laugh—which is why this game was so popular. To play, have everyone sit in a circle. Each player takes a turn to say, “Ha,” “Ho,” or “Hee.” The first player to start laughing loses and is out of the game. Play continues until only one player is left, who should of course receive a prize. I suggest a kazoo because how fun is that?

A Victorian Drink: Wassail Punch
Wassail was served to caroling groups after their singing was done. Recipes vary from family to family, but here’s one that’s quite common:

6 small apples, washed, cores removed
1 pint cider or hard apple cider
2 cinnamon sticks
2 pinches ground cloves
a pinch of nutmeg
1 lemon, sliced

1.     Roast the apples in an ovenproof dish for 45-50 minutes at 375, until the skins are beginning to split.
2.     Meanwhile, heat the cider and add the spices. You can also add ¼ cup of sugar if you like it sweeter.
3.     Add the lemon slices and roasted apples, then serve while hot.

Now then, after all that work—or even before all that work—how about you grab a cup of tea, put up your feet, and really get into the Victorian mood by reading my latest release, 12 Days at Bleakly Manor? Here’s a blurb:

England, 1851: When Clara Chapman receives an intriguing invitation to spend Christmas at an English manor home, she is hesitant yet feels compelled to attend—for if she remains the duration of the twelve-day celebration, she is promised a sum of five hundred pounds.

But is she walking into danger? It appears so, especially when she comes face to face with one of the other guests—her former fianc√©, Benjamin Lane.

Imprisoned unjustly, Ben wants revenge on whoever stole his honor. When he’s given the chance to gain his freedom, he jumps at it—and is faced with the anger of the woman he stood up at the altar. Brought together under mysterious circumstances, Clara and Ben discover that what they’ve been striving for isn’t what ultimately matters.

What matters most is what Christmas is all about . . . love.

Settle in for Book 1 of the Once Upon a Dickens Christmas series—a page-turning Victorian-era holiday tale by Michelle Griep, a reader and critic favorite.

This sounds so good. So tell us, readers, in the comments: What do you like best about the Victorian era or Christmas?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas. She is the author of historical romances: The Captured Bride, The Innkeeper’s Daughter, 12 Days at Bleakly Manor, The Captive Heart, Brentwood’s Ward, A Heart Deceived, and Gallimore, but also leaped the historical fence into the realm of contemporary with the zany romantic mystery Out of the Frying Pan. If you’d like to keep up with her escapades, find her or or stalk her on FacebookInstagramTwitter, or Pinterest.

 buy link:


Marilyn R. said...

Nice to meet Michelle Griep and her Victorian Christmas tidbits. I like the decorations from the Victorian era. 12 Days at Bleakly Manor sounds like a delightful read. Our mother would enjoy reading it, since she loves the Victorian era and decorates with a Victorian them. Thank you for sharing. I'm going to have to make the Wassail Punch since it's the original recipe for Wassail.

Unknown said...

The sharing of food, fellowship, decorating, and the true meaning of Christmas all produce wonderful memories!

Sabrina said...

I like it was simpler times and more handmade items :)

Rick Estep said...

Family, I think we've lost sight of what that means and how much we need to belong to a loving family.

Pam K. said...

I love the family getting together and the traditions we have at Christmas. Singing Christmas hymns is also a favorite.


Jeanne Crea said...

Delightful interview and sounds like a book I would really enjoy reading! Love the old fashioned decorations of the Victorian Era, and the family traditions we continue from our parents and grandparents. From my husbands Italian family, we have home made ravioli on Christmas Eve. Love all the faith and family gatherings!

Paula Shreckhise said...

I love the Victorian era for the clothes and the decorations. For Christmas, they would put handmade fancy hearts, fans, flowers etc, on the tree.
At Christmas I like to recall my childhood and visiting relatives. Or memories of when my four kids were little. Thanks for the chance to win. paulams49ATsbcglobalDOTnet

Caryl Kane said...

Wonderful interview with Michelle! The Victorian Era is so romantic! I love that most people focus on loving others during the Christmas season.
psalm103and138 at gmail dot com

lollipops said...

congratulations to Pam

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