Christmas 2016. Some might say that in a bid for “room for love,” the family and I all converged on a house in Ramona, California. The place was enormous and sat on a hill overlooking a steep drop-off below. An infinity pool ran right out to the edge of that drop-off, and a hot tub sat to its left. Anyone who has read my book Sand & Mistletoe knows the rest of the story. For the uninitiated, I’ll tell it from my point of view (since it’s the one I experienced).
There I was in our bedroom, typing furiously away on a book that released the following week, when I heard a shout. It’s the Havigs. We’re like the Big Fat Greek Wedding folks–without the Greekness (we save that for my dear friend instead). So a shout could be anything from someone pouring ice cubes into the hot tub to #2son chasing down one of the bestekids, or any number of other issues.
Then my bedroom door banged open. I don’t remember who stood there because the words, “Dad fell down the hill” kind of drove all other thoughts from my mind. I raced out of the room and to the hot tub where, no joke, my kids were using phones for flashlights to help my mostly blind (without his glasses) husband try to get back up. He’d fallen at least fifteen feet onto some boulders.
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How, you might ask?
Well, that’s the fun thing. Pretend there are air quotes around “fun.” Air quotes the size of tiger claws. See… there was zero lighting around the pool. And when you climbed out of the hot tub, it was onto a narrow ledge… a slippery, narrow ledge. With nothing to prevent him, my husband’s foot went, WHOOSH!… and down he went.
Seriously, I kind of felt sorry for the poor gal who rented us the house. I know she thought we’d sue. When we left, #2daughter let her know about the slipperyness and the lack of lighting to know where not to go and she had it installed before any of us got home. No, we didn’t sue. We’re not big fans of the whole lawsuit thing.
But… it makes for a great Christmas story… no really, I fictionalized it into a story that is nothing like that actual weekend and yet has enough of the family personalities (hopped up on literary steroids) that people sometimes say, “I can see (insert daughter here) in it, but she’s not like that!”
Exactly how I hoped it would be! It was my first time renting an Air BnB… and shocker… wasn’t my last! But those (including the one that had the scariest tub I’ve ever nearly broken my neck getting in and out of!!!) are stories for another day.
So what’s the thing with this story? Well… I’ll tell you.
Room for Love by Marguerite Martin Gray released yesterday!
God gave her peace then; maybe He’ll do it again.
When Amy Lee’s son heads off to college, the bed and breakfast owner finds life even lonelier and emptier than she had after losing her husband. She needs something to occupy her mind and heart while she reinvents her life again. What more could she ask for than an after-school program for local children and a renewed interest in painting?
Then the arrival of a professor of archeology shakes her world and makes her yearn for the way things were only a few short months ago.
Still grieving the loss of his beloved wife, and ignoring the warnings and protests of his grown children, Professor Walker Standish escapes on a six-month sabbatical. His heart, barely beating these past months, jerks to life again when he finds more than a room at a B & B.
Where an ocean meets the shore, love has room for one more.
Take a trip to the Suamalie Islands where palm trees sway, the sand and sea pulse with life, and the people will steal your heart.
The authors are all sharing their Air BnB stories, complete with giveaways, so you don’t want to miss them!
Marguerite Martin Gray: July 25
Chautona Havig: July 26
Rachel Skatvold: July 27
Susan K. Beatty: July 28
Tabitha Bouldin: July 29
Amanda Tru: July 30