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Sunday, December 8, 2019

Christmas memories inspired my collection~by Joanne Jaytanie

I’m excited to have had the opportunity to return to Forever Christmas in Glenville, a collection that is near and dear to my heart. Forever Christmas in Glenville was inspired by my childhood memories of the village of Sherburne, located in upstate New York.

My dedication in the Forever Christmas in Glenville Collection book.

Christmas Chemistry, book three of Forever Christmas in Glenville was recently released in the Christmas at Mistletoe Lodge collection. This multi-author collection hit the USA Today list.

I hope you enjoy this Christmas Chemistry book trailer and excerpt below.

Excerpt from Christmas Chemistry:

Owen stood at the door. He’d grown up in this house, but it never felt like home. He reached out for the door handle and hesitated. He released it and rang the bell.

“Welcome, Owen! Glad to have you home,” the maid said as she opened the door.
“Thank you, Betty,” he said. She reached for him and hugged him. Betty’s hair had turned gray, although her eyes still twinkled with warmth. She’d been the one constant in Owen’s life. Betty loved his family and had freely expressed it. It was good to see her still at the house. She’d been with his family for the last twenty-two years.
“Your mother is in the library. Rose should be down soon.”
“How is mother?”
“She has her good days and her bad days. More bad since the loss of your father.”
“And Rose?”
“Rose is Rose,” Betty said, rolling her eyes. Owen chuckled and patted her on the shoulder.
“You’re a saint, Betty.”
He walked into the library. Nothing had changed. Four years after his father’s death, everything remained where he’d left it. His father’s favorite chair was still in the corner of the room, his side table still held his father’s ashtray and pipe. A book, curled from reading one-handed, still perched on the chair. Owen was certain his mother’s rapidly declining health was worsened by her need to remain in the past.
His mother sat in front of the huge bay windows and gazed out at her glass hothouse. Her favorite place, she used to spend hours there with her orchids. Owen walked over to her and laid his hand on her shoulder.
“Hello, Mother. How are you feeling?”
She looked up at him and blinked rapidly.
“Alfred, you said you’d be joining your friends at the club for lunch. I have nothing prepared.” She blinked again as she broke eye contact and her gaze darted around the room.
“Mother, it’s me, Owen.”
She studied him and he could swear he saw the very instant she realized her Alfred wasn’t here.
“Owen. I didn’t know you were coming.”
            “Mother, we talked about this last night and again this morning,” Rose interjected as she swept into the library. “See what I mean?” she asked him. “She’s been experiencing more of these episodes over the last few weeks.”
“I’m fine, Rose. Stop fretting over me,” their mother snapped.
They spent the next hour in the hothouse. Owen pushed his mother around in a wheelchair that was new since his last visit. He and Rose had spoken about it and agreed with her doctor’s recommendation; it was safer for her, as she had fallen a couple times.
Betty joined them in the hothouse. “Mrs. Brock, it’s time for you to come inside and rest,” she said. “You’ve been out here enjoying this wonderful day for a long time now. But if you don’t rest, you won’t want to come down for dinner.” Betty smiled sadly at Owen and wheeled their mother away.
“We need to talk,” Rose said.
“That’s why I came, Rose. To talk.”
“The doctor came by yesterday. He feels the time has come to put Mother in a home where she can be cared for.”
“Is that what he feels is best for her?”
“He does. Mother has left the house twice in the last few days,” Rose said. “She doesn’t get very far, but we’re all worried one of these times she will fall down the front steps or get mugged.”
“Mugged? In Glenville?” Owen smirked at Rose.
“It could happen,” she answered in an exasperated tone.
“When was the last mugging in Glenville?”
Rose’s neck and face flushed red. “It’s also possible she could get lost; her memory is failing.”
“If that’s our next move, I’ll go to her attorney tomorrow and work out the details,” Owen said. “My guardianship of Mother should make the transition run smoothly. If Mother needs to go to a retirement home, I want to add a decent severance package for Betty in addition to her retirement.” It was apparent to him that Rose had no concern for their childhood nanny. They wandered out to the main living room. “I suppose you’ll be returning to Charleston.”
“I’m not sure I’m going back,” Rose said. “I’ve met someone here. He caught me entirely by surprise.” Owen wasn’t going to comment. Rose’s track record with men was spotty at best. At least she had managed to come away with a good settlement when she divorced her most recent husband.
“What about your house and your social responsibilities you kept telling me about? And I told you time and again to go back to Charleston. Are you saying that now you don’t want to? Betty had everything under control and I’d already planned to bring in a nurse.” Owen stopped and thought about what he just said. “In fact, I’m going to contact Mother’s doctor tomorrow and suggest that very thing.”
“No, Owen,” Rose abruptly cut him off. “It’s not safe for her here.”
“And a nursing home is better?” He would be speaking to everyone involved in the next couple days no matter what Rose said. “Father wouldn’t have wanted that.”
“Father isn’t here!”
“Precisely. And he left Mother’s care in my hands,” Owen reminded Rose. Lately he had to do this quite often. “I need to look at Mother’s current situation from all angles. If I conclude that it’s in Mother’s best interest to put her in a nursing home, then per father’s instruction, we’ll be putting the house on the market.”
“I’m staying here, Owen.”
“Yes, you already informed me.”
“In this house. I’m living here,” Rose put her hands on her hips.
“That’s not what is specified in the will.” Owen began to think there was more to all this than Rose was saying.
“My plans have changed. I have found someone and I’m staying in Glenville and living here.” Rose crossed her arms and glared at him.
“Fine. It doesn’t matter to me who buys this house.”
“I’m not buying my family home!” 

Wishing you and all those you love a very Merry Christmas!

Until next month,

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