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Guest Post: Mary Balogh and the Christmas Hope

Guest starring today on R@R is New York Times bestselling author Mary Balogh with a post on why, try as we might, we can never escape the power of Christmas. Don’t forget to click “more” to enter to win a copy of A CHRISTMAS BRIDE/CHRISTMAS BEAU in our Weekly Giveaway! There’s nothing better, after all, than curling up with a romantic Christmas novel this time of year.

It is easy to become weary of Christmas, especially when our senses are overloaded from early November on with lights and trees and piped music and the same old same old specials on television peppered with ads exhorting us to buy, buy, buy. By the time December comes, most of us, caught up in the annual frenzy, discover that there are at least ten times as many demands on our time and resources as there are during any other month of the year.

I feel as jaded as anyone else when, while crossing a drugstore on November 1 to reach the Post Office in the far corner, I find myself being invited to deck the halls with boughs of holly. I vow to disregard Christmas this year, to treat December 25 like any other day of the year. How freeing! But does it ever happen? No. Why not? Because, despite myself, by the middle of December I get sucked in, not by all the tedious, repetitive hype, but by the promise that despite everything that happens in our world, love and kindness and care for one another still exist as the certainty at the heart of everything. We see it in action at times of crisis and disaster, and for one day out of the year we pause and celebrate it. The strange and wonderful thing is, perhaps, that the message does not get snuffed out by all the noise and fuss but blazes its way through anyway.

And so, yet again this year, I will watch A CHRISTMAS CAROL, MIRACLE ON 34th STREET, NATIONAL LAMPOONS’ CHRISTMAS VACATION, and a few other old favorites and feel anew all the wonder and joy of the Christmas hope. December 25 will arrive, and it will NOT be like any other day of the year. It will be the best, the only Christmas Day.

What about you? Where do you fall on the spectrum—jaded or Christmas-obsessed?

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