Thursday, December 6, 2012

Christmas Stockings

I just finished Karen Hall's Christmas Historical Romance Anthology which is a collection of 3 of her short stories obviously Christmas themed:

Christmas Stockings
The Christmas Proposal
The Comet that Came for Christmas

Christmas Stockings was my favorite but all 3 of these little novellas was a joy to read. I can best describe them as heartwarming cozy romances.

In Christmas Stockings Holly pens love letters for others, an odd job in itself but one perfect for a hopeless romantic who is also in love with Grayson (I love that name) the church vicar. Grayson goes to Holly, whom he secretly is in love with to have her pen letters for his friend who is too shy to come to Holly himself. Holly doesn't realize that she is writing love letters to herself from Grayson.

In The Christmas Proposal Cassandra offers Lord Brandon an offer he can't refuse and one that in the end gives them both their hearts desire. He is an archaeologist who needs funds. Being the heir to a dukedom is reason enough for his brother to not give him the funds he needs and since he is not yet married or of age he can't get his inheritance. The Duke believes Brandon should be at home attending family duties and not working. Cassandra is an heiress. She offers to be his benefactor if he will pretend to court her over the Christmas season and get her Aunt off her back.

The Comet that Came for Christmas is actually set in Tennessee and is the story of Victoria and Jake. 4 years earlier Jake had broken Victoria's heart. Can 2 Christmas elves help these two forget the past and forge a future that was meant to be?

I will definitely keep this anthology in my Christmas pile of books to read at this time of year. I can't rave enough over how much I loved Christmas Stockings! Truly delightful!

Legend is not clear when the Christmas stocking really came into tradition, though it seems that Clement C Moore's Twas the Night Before Christmas originally published in 1823 inspired early drawings and he was possibly the first to write down such an event with his famous, "the stockings were hung from the chimney with care, in hopes that Saint Nicolas soon would be there".

Twas the Night Before Christmas
There is an interesting tale that tells of a century's past nobleman who lost his beloved wife and was left alone to raise their 3 daughters. Either due to his despair or some other misfortune he became penniless. The poor nobleman was very worried that his daughters would never marry because he couldn't provide dowry's for them. The sisters did all the cooking and cleaning and one Christmas Eve they had hung their washing to dry -  the stockings getting hung on the fire place. St Nicolas, passing through the village, overheard talk of the nobleman's problem and he wanted to help. He waited until night and rode his horse to their cottage. He peered in through the window and when he saw the girls stockings he dropped bags of gold down the chimney and the money landed in the stockings. This solved the problems of the nobleman and his daughters were able to get married; they all lived happily ever after. News travels fast and the villagers hung stockings for the very generous St Nicolas to fill each Christmas Eve. Eventually the new Christmas tradition spread throughout the land.
"Mischief Managed" ~ Kelly 

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