09 December 2013

Yankee Doodle Christmas and a giveaway!!

In only three days my friend Sheila has a novelette being released!

Sheila Seiler Lagrand, Ph.D., earned her doctorate in anthropology at the University of California, Los Angeles. As an undergraduate at the University of California, San Diego, she studied anthropology and literature with an emphasis in writing. You will find her blog on the home page of this site. Sheila is a member of The High Calling. As a young woman she published poems in dozens of literary magazines. She has also contributed to anthropology journals and contributed a chapter to the book Fieldwork and Families: Constructing New Models for Ethnographic Research.

More recently, her work has appeared in Wounded Women of the Bible: Finding Hope When Life Hurts, Paul’s Letter to the Philippians (BibleDude Community Commentary Series), and a few volumes of Chicken Soup for the Soul. She has work forthcoming in Soul Bare. 

I was blessed to be able to read an advanced copy of this warm and delightful tale about a bit of a Christmas mix-up.  I also had the opportunity to have a sort of virtual coffee date with Sheila to ask her some questions.  Why don't you go pour yourself a cup of something comforting and join us.

Sheila, your novelette Yankee Doodle Christmas is releasing in just a few days.  That seems like a wonderful gift for a writer. What other gifts would you like to receive this year?

Karin, thanks. It IS a wonderful gift. I would love to receive the gift of time--more time--to spend with our extended family. 

What are your favourite gifts to give?

Something that shows I've been paying attention, I guess. We took three of our grandchildren to the tall ships festival and Ayden, the 9 year old, was very interested in a book about pirates. We bought him one for Christmas. 

Your main character struggles with the need for approval.  What would you say to others who share the same struggle?

Oh, that's a hard question. Because I want to say, "God made you just as you are for a reason. Of course you're 'good enough.'" But I know when I've been in the throes of insecurity, that statement wouldn't soothe my spirit. I might be more likely to pray for that person rather than dispense advice.

What was your most memorable Christmas? 

Oh, that's a tough one. They've all been memorable. Maybe it was the Christmas I spent in the hospital when I was 14, recovering from a ruptured appendix. My parents were there with gifts at 8 a.m. That left a sweet impression on me. 

Coming from the Midwest and now living in Manitoba, to me winter has always meant snow and cold.  How do you make it look and feel like Christmas in California?

We hang lights, put up a tree, decorate, drink eggnog. Sometimes it gets all the way down to the 50s, you know.  And some years it's 80 degrees on Christmas. I've lived here all my life (except for a year in Polynesia, where it's even warmer) so I really don't have anything to compare it to. Snow is something that happens in the mountains and we drive to visit it. 

Mrs. Delsey's butter cookies are mentioned often in your story.  Do you have a recipe?

What a great idea! I don't. Do you?

Now, I ask you all the  same question?  What is your favourite butter cookie recipe?  Share it with us in the comments and you'll be entered to win a free e-copy of Yankee Doodle Christmas as soon as it releases.

Winner will be chosen by random draw on Wednesday night, not by bake-off!


Sheila said...

Karin, thank you! I hope you get some great recipes!!!

Unknown said...

I love you Sheila!! So excited to read your book!!!
Pam Anderson’s All Purpose Butter Cookies
1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar

1 large egg

1 egg yolk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
2 1/2 cups bleached all-purpose flour
chopped nuts, coconut, sprinkles or sugar, for decorating
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add in egg, egg yolk, vanilla and salt and mix well. Gradually, with the mixer on low speed, blend in the flour until a smooth dough comes together.
Divide dough in half and shape each piece into a log roughly 2-inches across. Wrap in wax paper or parchment paper and freeze for about 2 hours, or until firm. Dough can also be stored for several days in the fridge (several weeks in the freezer, well-wrapped).
Preheat oven to 375F.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Take the logs of chilled dough and cut each in half. Dough may need to soften for a few minutes. Roll each smaller log in finely chopped nuts, coconut, sprinkles or coarse sugar. Cut logs into slices about 1/4-inch thick. Transfer cookie rounds to prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 12-14 minutes, until cookies just begin to brown around the edges. Cool completely on a wire rack.

JoAnn Valencia

Unknown said...

1 cup Butter, softened 1 cup sugar 1 Egg 2 tablespoons orange juice 1 tablespoon vanilla 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder Combine 1 cup softened butter, sugar and egg in large bowl. Beat at medium speed, scraping bowl often, until creamy. Add orange juice and 1 tablespoon vanilla. Continue beating, scraping bowl often, until well mixed. Add flour and baking powder; beat at low speed until well mixed.

Divide dough into thirds. Shape each third into a ball; flatten slightly. Wrap each in plastic food wrap; refrigerate 2 to 3 hours or until firm.

Heat oven to 400°F. Roll out dough, one-third at a time, on lightly floured surface (keeping remaining dough refrigerated), to 1/8- to 1/4-inch thickness. Cut with 3-inch cookie cutters. Place 1 inch apart onto ungreased cookie sheets.

Bake 6-10 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Let stand 1 minute on cookie sheet; remove to cooling rack. Cool completely.

lynndiane said...

Christmas Cut-Out Cookies (made with butter)
1/2 cup soft butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
2 Tb. cream (or milk)
1 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
Mix well soft butter, sugar, and eggs. Stir in cream and vanilla. Add dry ingredients. Chill dough 4 hrs. (or overnight). Pre-heat oven to 400 F. Roll out dough a little at a time (keeping rest of dough chilled in fridge). Cut out cookie shapes and place on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 6-8 minutes. Cool then decorate with frosting & candy sprinkles.

HisFireFly said...

The random number generator spit out #4! lynndiane please give me an email address so we can have you e-book sent to you! Merry Christmas!

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