Smorgasbord Blogger Weekly – 29th December 2021 – #Funnies The Story Reading Ape, #Bookreviews Terry Tyler, #Christmas Carol Taylor, #Donation Jennie Fitzkee, #Videos D. G. Kaye, #Farewell to a friend.

A small selection of blog posts from Christmas week that I have enjoyed and I hope you will head over to enjoy in full.  Thanks Sally

If you are feeling a little bit in the doldrums during the week between Christmas festivities and New Year’s Eve.. here is some cheer from The Story Reading Ape with some fabulous crackers….

Monday Funnies by Chris, The Story Reading Ape

Head over to enjoy the laughter: Monday Funnies The Story Reading Ape

Terry Tyler shares her reviews from 2021 including her top five selection (honoured to be included). And the some more….means you get 21 recommendations for great books to read in 2022.

My Top Five Books of 2021 (and some more…) by Terry Tyler

I’ve reviewed 51 books on this blog this year, and tried to do my usual top twenty or top ten … but I couldn’t. Too many instances of ‘which do I include, this one or that one?’ I found, however, that I was able to choose my top five. I don’t very often give my ‘5 GOLD stars’ rating; there were only two last year. It’s for the books that make me think ‘5 stars doesn’t really do it justice’. These are my chosen five of the seven I awarded this year.

Mistress Constancy by Gemma Lawrence

Part one of the story of Jane Rochford, wife of George Boleyn

Head over to discover the other 20 plus recommendations for your reading pleasure this year: Top five books of 2021 and some more by Terry Tyler

Another firm favourite all year around, but especially at Christmas when Carol Taylor shares wonderful festive recipes and snippets.. here is a smidgeon of what you can find in her weekly round up for Christmas week.

My Culinary A-Z is nearing the end of the alphabet…which means the last one of that
series will now be after Christmas…Christmas Music featuring more
versions of “Silent Night” plus Christmas recipes and trivia…

Welcome to my weekly roundup…This week last week has warmed up a little…the nights are still a tad cold but it’s nice to be able to sleep without a fan…

What is in store for you then this week if you are catching up… some more versions of “Silent Night”…Christmas Recipes, Winter Warmers.

Head over to enjoy all the fun, food and music: CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 19th- 25th December 2021…

This is an amazing story that demostrates how important it is to celebrate reading and books. Jennie Fitzkee​ was a guest on The Kelly Clarkson Show​ and in honour of Jennie’s commitment to reading and teaching Dollar General donated $50,000 in Jennie’s name to Read Aloud, an organisation Jennie has been a long time supporter of. Read more about this incredible moment.

Photo courtesy of The Kelly Clarkson Show, NBCUniversal Syndication Studios

Giving – Dollar General, Kelly Clarkson, Dolly Parton, and Me 

It is the season of giving. I can’t tell you how much it meant for me to give to Read Aloud West Virginia. This would not have happened if I hadn’t been a guest on the Kelly Clarkson Show. Her mother was a teacher, and grew up in West Virginia. We have a terrific connection. Kelly is a genuine giver.

This newsletter from Read Aloud West Virginia tells the story of me, back home. More importantly, it tells the story of Dollar General. The co-founder was functionally illiterate. It was his grandson who wanted to give to literacy in light of his grandfather, and founded the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

This is just like Dolly Parton! Her father could not read. She has been instrumental in giving books to children and her Imagination Library.

Appalachian roots are strong, from West Virginia to Tennessee. Giving is, too. I’m glad I brought some of that along with me when I moved to New England. Giving is everything.

Head over to read more of this incredible story: Dollar General gives $50,000 in honor of longtime supporter Jennie Fitzkee

And finally today.. Debby Gies shares two wonderful Christmas advertisements that will have you reaching for your tissues.. lovely.

Greatest Holiday Commercial Ads to Touch Your Heart

This Christmas will be difficult for so many this year, and mine is no exception. I’m not going to write any fancy or bougie words here about how cozy and mushy this time of year is for me and for so many others, between loss, hurt and this damned Corona virus, but I do want to share these beautiful commercial ads I came across. These ads reach far beyond whatever they are selling; they all encompass the human spirit of love, kindness and empathy. If you need a reason to smile (even though a tissue needed will be a guarantee), please enjoy. Hallmark has some strong competition!

Wishing you all a happy holiday season and goodness and good health for the new year forward.

Head over to enjoy the two videos.. they will warm your heart: Greatest Holiday Commercial Ads to Touch Your Heart

Sadly to end this post today a small tribute to a friend who I met online back in 2015 and then was so delighted to meet in person in 2017. Many of you already know, on the 27th December, Mary Smith’s husband gave us the news we had been expecting, but which was still hard to hear. Mary died peacefully on Christmas morning. Details of her memorial which will be streamed will be posted when arranged. She will be much missed by all who knew her in person and online and our thoughts are with her husband and son.

The last post and where you will find details of the memorial when arranged: Cancer Diary – The Last Post – Mary Smith’s Place

 Thank you for dropping in today.. stay safe… love and hugs Sally.