Home for the Holidays with Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl



I’m so excited to be welcoming Jana to the blog today. Jana’s Bookish Little Christmas feature was one of the inspirations for the Home for the Holidays feature, here at What Sarah Read, so it’s such an honor to have her here today. In a perfect twist of fate, I also created a top ten post for Jana’s Christmas feature, and I love how similar but personal both lists are. Between Jana’s list below and my list over at That Artsy Reader Girl, we have the best of the holidays totally covered!

Hi everyone! I’m so excited to be participating in Sarah’s special Christmas feature, Home for the Holidays, this year! If you know me at all, you know I love Christmas more than most things. I’m here today to share with you my ten favorite things about Christmas. Sarah has written up her own Christmas top ten for my blog’s Christmas event, A Bookish Little Christmas, so make sure you stop by to read hers!

1. Memories

Here is my little sister, me, and my mom baking cookies together.

The magic of Christmas always makes me look back on my childhood. I grew up a Navy brat, so I moved every 2-3 years growing up as my dad received orders for new duty stations. As such, I’ve spent many Christmases in many different places. My fondest memory is of when we were living on base in California. Someone had sleigh bells and walked through our neighborhood ringing them on Christmas Eve. I bolted out of bed and squealed with glee because Santa was here! I also have many happy memories of hanging out in the kitchen baking Christmas cookies with my mom and little sister.

2. Coziness

Don’t you think Christmas is a super cozy time of year? I love curling up by the fire with a fuzzy blanket and hot chocolate, reading while Christmas instrumentals play in the background. I also love sitting by the tree watching it snow outside.

3. Music

One of my Christmas pageants! These people are some of my very dearest friends.

I LOVE Christmas music, but I’m a major traditionalist. My very favorite Christmas song is It’s the Most Wonderful Time of Year, but only if it’s sung by Andy Williams. Find the Christmas Traditional Radio station on Pandora and you’ll hear all my favorites! I also love singing Christmas music. I was in choir my entire life, and in college I was in three Christmas pageants.

4. Books

I spend all December reading Christmas books, mostly romances, and I love them so much! A few of my very favorites are Starry Night by Debbie Macomber; Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle; Operation White Christmas by Nikki Edwards; and The Unlikely Romance of Kate Bjorkman by Louise Plummer.

5. Movies

I’m one of those Hallmark Christmas movie people… My mom and I record all the new ones and then watch as many as we can before Christmas. Some are way too cheesy and we make fun of them relentlessly, and some of them make us swoon and even get a little misty. Some of my favorites are Finding Father Christmas, The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, Window Wonderland, and One Starry Christmas. I also love The Holiday, The Santa Clause, and Polar Express.

6. Lights

I love Christmas lights a lot. Some might say too much. The tree has, like, 12 strings on it every year, and I put thousands up on the house. I also love going to see Christmas light displays with my mom and sister. We go to two drive-through displays that are amazing (one of them is synchronized to Christmas music). We also go see the lights at Temple Square in Salt Lake City, the lights at my city center, and two pretty amazing displays at a couple local shopping centers.

7. Ornaments

I have way too many favorites, so here are a few of them. L to R: A stack of books for my blog, the year I started kindergarten, Florence, Italy, and Bellagio, Italy.

I collect Christmas ornaments! I buy one from every pace I travel, for milestones in my life, and ones that relate to my hobbies. My tree is basically a scrapbook. I also collect the lighthouse series from Hallmark because they make the tree twinkle beautifully. It’s so much fun to put them up every year and remember all the fun things I’ve done and all the good things that have happened to me.

8. Baking

I love baking Christmas cookies! My sister helps me, and we spend an entire day or two baking all of our favorites. I particularly love spritz cookies and whipped shortbread cookies.

9. Snow

I’m always dreaming of a white Christmas. I find snow to be so invigorating and beautiful. I love it when the world looks like Narnia outside. Things seem quieter and cleaner and brighter when it’s snowing.

10. Happiness

We all struggle. Life is hard, and it’s gotten harder for me as I’ve gotten older with health issues and other personal trials. Christmas has the power to make me happy, though, and it’s a combination of everything I’ve listed here that makes me so happy and gives me hope for a better tomorrow.

And there you have it! I hope you have a very happy holiday season, filled with magic, love, and happiness.

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5 comments for “Home for the Holidays with Jana from That Artsy Reader Girl

  1. […] December 1: 2017 Christmas Novels | New Release List December 2: Handmade Holiday Cards by Andi of Andi’s ABC’s (+ Giveaway) December 3: Christmas Songs Book Tag 2017 December 4: The Boyfriend Swap by Meredith Schorr | Book Review December 5: Anna Bernard’s Favorite Holiday Movies & TV Episodes | Guest Post December 6: Happy Holidays from Forever! | Christmas Book Spotlights & Giveaway December 7: Sarah’s (What Sarah Read) Christmas Top Ten | Book Blogger Guest Post December 8: Miracle on 5th Avenue by Sarah Morgan | Book Review & Giveaway December 9: Brookie Cowles’s 2017 Book Gift Guide | Author Guest Post December 10: The Christmas Cabin by J.L. Jarvis | Book Review December 11: A Polish Christmas by Ksenia Winnicki | Guest Post (+ Giveaway) December 12: My Top Ten Favorite Books of 2017 December 13: April’s Favorite Christmas Movies, Music, & Books | Book Blogger Guest Post December 14: Starry Night by Debbie Macomber | Book Review My Christmas Top Ten at What Sarah Read […]

  2. I LOVE this. So cute and sweet <3

  3. Love this post! Totally agree that Christmas is such a cozy time of year! I love to hang out in our living room by the Christmas tree, all snuggled in a blanket while I read a book or watch Christmas movies. 🙂

  4. danielle hammelef

    Jana, I believe you and I are soul sisters when it comes to Christmas; I could have written a similar post. Merry Christmas!

  5. […] Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.): I guest posted on Sarah’s blog during her Home for the Holidays event, and I really loved […]

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