A Victorian Christmas

Hello, I thought some happy Victorian Christmas poems would be great for this time of year, but they are hard to come by. The lyrics generally break your heart by the second verse.
But I was in luck as I found a humorous one, but I also came across this modern poem that touches the heart. So I put that one on first. The Victorian poetry that follows is light and flighty for the Victorians, that is!!


Little tree
little tree
little silent Christmas tree
you are so little
you are more like a flower
who found you in the green forest
and were you very sorry to come away?
see i will comfort you
because you smell so sweetly
i will kiss your cool bark
and hug you safe and tight
just as your mother would,
only don’t be afraid
look the spangles
that sleep all the year in a dark box
dreaming of being taken out and allowed to shine,
the balls the chains red and gold the fluffy threads,
put up your little arms
and i’ll give them all to you to hold
every finger shall have its ring
and there won’t be a single place dark or unhappy…

Poem by E.E. Cummings found in Ten Beautiful Christmas Poems on website Leah Dobrinska

Berries on holly proclaim ‘tis cold!

Cousin Annette, I am warmer thus;

A hand and a waist if my arms enfold,

The hand and waist will be cozy, puss!

For here we can sit and defy the wind,

Though panes are rattled with blinding sleet,

And happily one of us thus may find

That winter is best for us both, my sweet!

 

Mistletoe grows on the oak they say!

Cousin Annette! – she is fast asleep,

But this is a dangerous game to play,

For wandering rogues may on tiptoe creep.

The mistletoe’s beckoning over her head,

My fluttering heart, you must cease to beat;

Sleep soft! While over the floor I tread –

And wake at the touch of my lips, my sweet!

 

Winter is bringing the travellers home!

Cousin Annette, have I cause to fear

Lest one loved better than I may come

To claim the hand that is resting here?

The falsest women are fair as you,

And lips as pretty have sworn deceit;

But on my honour I’d swear you true –

As true as the rose at your breast, my sweet!

 

Winter is long! Ay, winter’s long!

Cousin Annette, is it time to go?

Perchance the lover and love-sick song

May melt forever with winter’s snow?

The dearest thoughts in the heart lie deep

Through snows of winter and rose-time heat,

But if your memory tries to sleep,

Remember the mistletoe kiss, my sweet!

 

Excerpt from ‘The Mistletoe Kiss’ from London Society Christmas edition 1868.

The Mistletoe Kiss

A Winter Song by Clement W. Scott

HAVE A  WONDERFUL  AND HAPPY

CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR.

Short Christmas stories to enjoy all year long. Christmas Shorts, EIGHTEEN sweet to spicy tales to enjoy any time of year.

Gingerbread Cake Means Christmas by @JoanReeves #mgtab

In our home, it’s not officially Christmas until I make Old-Fashioned Gingerbread.

Everyone talks about gingerbread men and gingerbread houses during the holidays, and both of those items are really cute. But, to me, they look better than they taste.

I don’t like crisp, hard-baked gingerbread cookies. Maybe it’s because my mom never made gingerbread people or houses. She made gingerbread cake and served it warm from the oven with a dollop of cream cheese frosting sprinkled with lemon zest on top. From scratch.

Oh, my goodness, the smell of the gingerbread baking made salivary glands go into overdrive. And the taste? Amazing.

Many people think it takes too long to make a cake from scratch so they buy a cake mix. I’m sure the cake mix is probably a good product, and you may want to try it.

However, I’d like to share my recipe for homemade gingerbread with you. It’s darker in appearance than the picture shown on the box. That’s probably because my recipe calls for molasses. That’s what gives it the darker color, rich aroma, and depth of flavor.

Old-Fashioned Gingerbread

  • 1/2 cup sugar, white or brown
  • 1 egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup molasses
  • 1 cup hot water (hot from the tap, not boiling)
  1. Butter a 9x9x2 inch baking pan and set aside. Turn your oven on and set it for 350 degrees F.
  2. Sift flour into a small bowl along with the ginger, baking soda, nutmeg, and salt.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl, and add the egg. Beat well.
  4. Add the molasses to the butter mixture and beat well.
  5. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the butter mixture a little at a time. Mix well after each addition until all is incorporated.
  6. Carefully stir in the hot water and mix well.
  7. Pour the batter into the baking pan and place in the preheated oven.
  8. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 40-45 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  9. Serve warm plain or with a dollop of whipped cream or cream cheese frosting.

I made Gingerbread this past weekend so, for me, it’s officially Christmas!

Be sure and enter our Rafflecopter on our Home Page and check out all the wonderful Holiday Romances—books and box sets galore—you’ll find from the very talented authors of The Authors’ Billboard.

Holiday Romances by Joan Reeves

Above are a few of my Christmas Romances for your consideration. I invite you to sign up for my Newsletter which has new release information and giveaways too.

I wish you a Merry Christmas and a very Happy, Healthy, Prosperous New Year!

The Beauty of Joy

I love hanging out with people who are joyful. They radiate kindness, tenderness, and a love for life. With a smile and kind encouragement, a person filled with joy brings a feeling of expectation to everyone around them.

Joy is contagious, bringing lighthearted pleasure and laugh out loud moments.

So, during this magical holiday season, make a joyful noise. May your homes be filled with love, and your moments filled with laughter.

I have two new sweet holiday romances for December, and only 99¢!

A Cbocolate-Box Christmas: Love is sweeter with a touch of mischief.

A Chocolate-Box New Years: Fresh pasta isn’t the only specialty that takes extra time…

A Chocolate-Box New Years

Why My Outdoor Lights Stay Up Until March

Why My Outdoor Decorations Stay Up Until March by @_NancyRadke #mgtab

I am one of those who put my outdoor lights up around Thanksgiving and don’t take them down until after March. I especially love the white fairy lights that cast a warm glow on everything. This year I plan to put up some larger, colored lights, but I still want the tiny white fairy lights around my windows.

So why do I leave my decorations up so long? It has nothing to do with decorating and everything to do with a slight amount of SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder). I live near Seattle where it gets dark around 5 pm, starting in November and continuing through February. I happen to be very sensitive to outdoor light or lack of it.

In the summer, I get up with the sun and am pretty much happy all day. I rarely close my curtains. (Some of my windows don’t even have curtains.) But in the winter, when it is dark out, it makes me want to sleep and not get anything done. Closing the curtains doesn’t work. I KNOW it is black on the other side. Pitch black. Dark as the inside of a wolf’s mouth at midnight.

One year I put up fairy lights as a decoration. I didn’t think much of it until I realized that it kept my windows from feeling dark. Even though I KNEW it was dark outside, it didn’t FEEL that way. I could leave my curtains open. Even with them shut, light shone on them from the outside, as if it wasn’t dark out.

I no longer wanted to start closing down at 3:30, 4 pm, and instead felt full of energy. Hooray! Fairy lights are wonderful. I put them on a timer so that they would come on before it started getting too dark and not go off until 10 pm. This worked so great that I left them up until the spring equinox was close enough that I no longer needed them.

So if you feel dreary during the long northern winter nights, get those fairy lights working for you. Don’t take them down in January just because the holiday season is over. You may be the only house on the block with your lights on, but if it works, keep them on.

My Christmas story this year, Three French Hens, takes place on a Montana ranch, with freezing cold weather, darkness, and the bank threatening to foreclose on a widow and her son. The hero finds his way to her door because she had put a bright light up on the barn to help guide herself back home. He thought at first it was a star helping him find his way. That’s the way I feel about fairy lights.

Click here for set containing this story.

The set shown here is Unforgettable Christmas Dreams, put out by the Authors’ Billboard. If you want to enter our monthly contest, click this link.

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