Mistletoe Mishap – New Release

Mistletoe Mishap

by Tracy Krimmer

Release Date: October 21, 2019

Price: $2.99

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About Tracy Krimmer:

Tracy Krimmer loves coffee, popcorn, Drew Barrymore, and the movie Saving Silverman. She enjoys reading great books (of course) and writing realistic characters for you to enjoy. When she listens to music she prefers the 80s and 90s music she grew up on. In a typical day you’ll find her writing at one of her favorite spots–on the couch, at the kitchen table, or at her favorite hometown coffee shop.

Tracy

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Blurb:

What was meant to be a fling turns into a love they both thought they’d never have or deserved….

Alexis Paige did not make a habit of drunkenly booking travel for herself on the internet. But after the worst breakup ever, she’s going wherever the wind, and her widowed dad, urges her to go. Now Alexis is on a plane to Colorado and Mistletoe Manor. The guy seated next to her is easy on the eyes, and oddly charming, but he’s also obnoxious. She’s relieved she never has to see Grayson Wells again. She’s had enough of indecipherable men.

Until she walks into Mistletoe Manor. Grayson’s aunt runs the rustic bed and breakfast, and it’s his annual holiday spot. He knows the town well and wants to show Alexis all it has to offer. She’s leery, especially of a guy like Grayson who’s a little too smooth, but she can’t find a reason to say no. One kiss under the famed mistletoe and it’s almost too easy to say yes. She tells herself that Grayson is a fling, but it hurts to say goodbye only a few short weeks later. Darn that mistletoe…

Back at home, Alexis finds everything shifting—career, her childhood home on the market, and oh yeah, her dad’s marital status. She’s thrilled her father has found love, but it’s too much at once, especially when she’s still missing her mom and feeling like her romantic life is doomed. When her dad announces the nuptials will take place at Mistletoe Manor, she fears the trip will just make her sad over what might have been. But when Grayson turns up and puts it all on the line, will Alexis give in to love or will she regret that mistletoe kiss? 

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Vendor links: 

Mistletoe Mishap -Excerpt

Alexis hit the Unfriend button. Why did she have her assistant as a friend online anyway? Come to think of it, she still had herself connected to Jonah. She searched for his name and clicked on it.

He hadn’t posted for months, which was like him. He used the social network intermittently. His last post was the two of them on vacation over Easter. Alexis had much shorter hair, and her eyes were wide and glowing. She remembered this day as though it had just happened. She had been so in love. Alexis took the time to study his face. Did he show any signs back then that he didn’t want to be with her? His face beamed with a smile so big his eyes were slits. His arms covered her like a blanket. Everything about that picture said he loved her.

Liar.

She clicked the unfriend button on his profile as well. What about all the pictures of them together she posted on her profile page? She clicked over to her photos. There were so many. At least a hundred. Alexis loved taking photos of the two of them together. If she wanted to take them off her page, she’d have to sit and delete every single picture one by one.

Who had time for such a rigorous process? She probably did, seeing as she didn’t have a job anymore. But she wasn’t going to spend her time doing that.

“I’m deleting my account.”

“Why?”

Alexis shrugged halfheartedly. “Why not? I don’t need to be on here. I’m too old for this crap. Social media? No, thank you.” She found her profile settings and clicked into the deactivation area. She had two choices, deactivate and she could come back another time, or delete permanently.

She clicked “Permanently delete account” and confirmed she wanted to do this. With a sigh, she flopped back onto the couch and let her head fall back.

She kind of wished she could suspend her life.

Whatifs

 

The Heart of Christmas

It’s Christmas again. At one point—for most of my life really—Christmas was my favorite holiday. My father was a true Santa Claus who just adored the holiday and was able to turn it into pure magic to us kids. I wanted to do the same for my boys but I think I have failed miserably. But that’s a story for another day.

This year Christmas sneaked up on me and found me totally and utterly unprepared. Never in my long-ish life have I ever got to December 21 without a single gift bought or a grocery run done. No cookies baked, no treats arranged artistically in bags for my students and colleagues, no Christmas music playing continually on the radio. If it wasn’t for my oldest son, his girlfriend and my husband we probably wouldn’t even have a tree up this year.

Depression brought on by total exhaustion of mind and body has left me without any energy or motivation to do any of the things I so loved to do. I did “adopt” a couple kids for Christmas, I donated some of my books for a good cause, and I was the secret Santa for someone at work. But other than that I have been a total humbug.

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So when my new team surprised me with a truly Christmas-y breakfast this morning I was floored and grateful. For the first time this season I felt the spirit take me to that place where magic and wonder still live. It was heartwarming and uplifting.

This is my feeble way of thanking them and gift them with the one thing I do best. You did my soul good this morning. Thank you.

 

Fourth of July Giggles (or Chuckles)

A fellow writer posted a seriously amusing short piece on the NaNoWriMo facebook page and I just thought it was too good not to be shared. So with his kind permission, here it is (I gave it a title because I’m a little OCD about that–I hope  you don’t mind):

A Fourth Re-Enactment

by Joseph Kennedy

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“Kids, it’s July 4th. You know what to do.”

“Fill the bathtub, and dump the tea in there.”

“Yep. Let’s get on with it.”

“Dad, you know mom gets pissed when we do this.”

“Recognizing our heritage is important. I’ll make it up to her.”

“The tea party took place in December. How about we leave her the ginseng?”

“All the tea.”

“It’s from Korea!”

“Okay. But then we’re adding the English muffins. Run down to the kitchen and get them.”

“Mom’s in the Kitchen with your six pack of Samuel Smith’s, a bottle opener, and standing next to the sink. She said it’s your move.”

“Damn. Okay kids. The Tea party is off.”

“Dad, the founding fathers wouldn’t have given in so easily.”

“Sam Adams had his own brewery.”

Into a New Year

New Year letter

You have no idea how many times I have started this blog only to discard it all. Writing an end-of-the-year reflection is not easy, it turns out. A lot has happened this year. It was not the best year of my life, but there were some pearls hidden in the muck of 2015.

I will start with the bad because I want to finish this piece with something positive. I’ve always prided myself of being an optimist, the kind of person who always looks for the silver lining and hangs on to it for dear life. It’s the only way I know of surviving some of the curve balls life throws at you. The year that is now ending has really tested me and I admit that there has been too many times lately when I have trouble finding that little gold nugget and hanging on to it.

As I get older I realize that with every passing year both my family and my husband’s will lose more and more loved ones. It’s the natural circle of life, but knowing this doesn’t make it any easier. This year my husband lost his two parents within the space of six months and I lost two wonderful in-laws. Hard to believe they won’t be here anymore. On my side of the family, I lost one of my aunts. She was always a constant presence in my life growing up.  She is sorely missed. I also lost my sweet dachshund, Shorty. He was so much more than a dog. He was family and my best friend, the one who was always there for me, no questions asked. I miss him every day.

The world itself seems to have lost its way with all the senseless acts of violence here and abroad. Sometimes it looks like we have regressed a few hundred years instead of advancing into the future. How do you wrap your head around what happened in Paris? Or San Bernadino? Or Turkey? How do you reconcile the images of Syrian refugees risking their lives to desperately flee the daily horrors of their own regime? Every morning, when I tune in to my favorite classical music radio station the first thing out of the news reporter’s mouth always starts with “this many people were killed today in an attack somewhere in the world.” Bad news have overwhelmed most of us this year and dragged our spirits down.

On a more personal note, and after twelve years of relative bliss, my work environment turned toxic this year. In a matter of a few weeks I went from waking up in the morning excited to face another day at work to having to (sometimes literally) drag myself out of bed to face another day in emotional hell. For a very calm person who always kept her cool under pressure, 2015 turned out to be the year I started having anxiety attacks at the mere mention of work. Opening a work email became the equivalent of opening Pandora’s box and my general health went down the toilet with it. I have spent more time at the doctor’s office this year than ever. There is a silver lining in this one though (even though it is not any consolation); in this hellish process, which started around Spring break and has not stopped yet, I know now who my real friends are and that it is time for me to move on with my life.

Amongst all the bad things there were some hidden gems (like the ones I just listed above). This was the year I managed to finally go visit my mom and sister. It had been three years since I had seen them. With the ever-rising prices of airplane tickets it is not easy living an ocean apart from your family. Seeing them, my nephews, my native country was bliss. While my husband basked in the sun at the beach every morning I was more than happy to just visit and catch up over a cup of espresso and a pastry.

There were some people, besides my family, who were there for me more times than I care to admit. They may not even have realized how much they were giving me by just smiling or being who they are. Thank you Kathie and Darlene, my wonderful Sippy Cup writer friends, my amazing yoga teacher Aliya, Denise, Susan, Sylvia, Doris, and Pam (your smiles, kind words, and jokes have made my life just a little brighter) and the extraordinary ladies of my Meetup group. You guys are AWESOME!

Last, but not least, this was the year I signed a publishing contract. I won’t dwell on it because I’m sure you are all tired of hearing about it by now 🙂   But needless to say I’m on cloud nine. What better way to start a new year than seeing your work come into fruition? The best thing about this though is that I am finally able to pay tribute to my father and the faith he had in me by writing under our family name, Reis.

It’s time now for you to tell me how your year went. Comment away please and have yourself an amazing new year.

Raise your glasses to 2016.

May it be the year the world finds peace and you find true happiness.

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We Remember

For the Fallen by Robert Laurence Binyon (excerpt)

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted;
They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

Spring Break

Spring break! Finally! No, I am not going on some fancy cruise to the tropics or even a weekend in the mountains. I have absolutely no plans for this week and that’s what makes it so exciting for me.

I am a teacher. You know, one of those who only work from 9 to 4 and have the whole summer off… Right! And unicorns really exist. Being a teacher is an around the clock job. I may not be physically at work but I am working. Lesson plans, materials to prepare, even the simple fact of figuring out new and exciting ways to help my struggling students learn. It never stops. Then, there are the never-ending trainings, meetings, electronic paperwork, assignments to create, grade, and file in the correct binders. I will be shopping and still working. Look, the kids would really like that! Wow, this would be an awesome incentive.

I am also a writer. Writing has always been a major part of my life in one form or another. Recently writing has taken on a different tone for me. As my mortality becomes more of a reality than I would like it to be, I feel that writing is how I can leave a piece of me behind. There’s a new sense of emergency to get all those stories I have been carrying around in my head for years out on paper, like unborn children wanting to see the light of day.

Reading, much like writing, has also been always a great part of my life. Just as with writing, I now feel I have to make up for lost time. After all, there are so many good books I haven’t read yet. What if I die before I read all of them? How can I go peacefully into the afterlife knowing I left so much to do?

My plans for this week? Drink lots of coffee, read tons and write even more. I am making myself NOT work (really tough for a teacher, let me tell you) other than alphabetizing my personal library (playing with books does not count as work). Camp NaNo starts in a couple days and I am ready! My fingers are itching and my mind is racing. I am so glad it is Spring break!

International Women’s Day

In an effort to honor International Women’s Day, I decided to make a list of fictional women who have proved (in their literary or cinematic way) that women are so much more than the “weaker sex”. None of them were perfect (thus my admiration), none of them asked for notoriety- in fact most of them were reluctant “heroes”, women who had glory thrust into them or were forced to stand their ground. They were ultimately a reflection of the spirit, ideals and creativity of other women or women-supporting men and because of that, in spite of their fictional nature, they should be remembered somehow. Here are a few along with their “foes”.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer – fought demons and vampires

Katniss (Hunger Games) – despotic government

Tris (Divergent) – power-hungry ruling group

Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice) – societal rules

Clary Fray (Mortal Instruments) – demons

Hazel Lancaster (The Fault in Our Stars) – Cancer

Aibileen (The Help) – Bigotry

Liesel Meminger (The Book Thief) – Nazi rule/war

Flavia de Luce (The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie) – crime

M’Lynn (Steel Magnolias) – losing a child

Veronica Mars – criminals and society

Norma Rae – social rule/workplace injustice

Princess Leia (Star Wars) – the Empire and other creeps

Sarah Connor (Terminator) – the machines

Juno – teen pregnancy

Hermione Granger (Harry Potter) – evil and ignorance

And let’s not forget our animated sisters, Mulan and Brave

And for a few of my real-life idols, here goes a great big hurrah!

Mother Teresa, Malala Yousafzai, Anne Frank, Rosa Parks, Clara Barton, Susan B. Anthony, J.K.Rowlings, and Ruby Bridges. Thank you for being  such an inspiration.

Goodbye Christmas Break

I have never been much of a lady of leisure (some may argue that I have never been much of a lady but that’s a matter of opinion) always preferring to work than being left to my own devices. I am not sure what changed, maybe it’s just old age setting in, but these two weeks of vacation changed my mind. I LOVE not having to go to work, I love having free time to not only do the daily necessary chores but time to go and have a leisurely cup of coffee, read a book in peace, go to yoga every morning and, best of all, be able to write and write and write some more.

I have tried to steal some moments at work during my lunch hour (whoever thought of that name for a 25 minute lunch break? In my country a 25 minute lunch break is called a coffee break; time to savor a good espresso and a sweet pastry; not a full lunch), sandwich on one hand, attempting one-hand typing on my keyboard… by the time I finish a sentence, it’s time to wrap it up and go back to work. It just doesn’t work.

I am planning some write-ins with friends and some writing sprints with other like-minded people for the next few weeks but I am going to miss having the luxury of just sitting for a couple hours a day and lose myself in my imaginary worlds of wonder and words. What do you do to keep up with your writing during a work week?