Christmas Interview – Darlene Jones

The countdown to Christmas continues. Sharing her thoughts and ideas about Christmas is a special author, Darlene Jones. She has written an Earth-based sci-fi series of four novels about a woman who is re-incarnated in each book in order that she can continue her work to fix what’s wrong with the world. “Em,” the very capable main character in this series reminds me very much of my guest today, Darlene Jones.

How many of you have ever ridden a camel? Pretty special!

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Questions I asked Darlene:

1. Do you celebrate Christmas?

Yes, with family and friends. The more the merrier, as they say.

2. Have you ever spent Christmas alone?

No, and I’m glad for that as I think a Christmas alone would be unbearably sad.

3. Have you ever had a non-traditional Christmas dinner?

Yes, in Mexico we have had tamales and flan. Delicious, but I missed the traditional dinner especially the leftovers for breakfast the next morning which is the best part of a turkey dinner so now we cook a turkey on the barbecue.  We also have a piñata for the kids. One year I celebrated Christmas in Mali. My friend and I were volunteers with CUSO. We found a way to make pie crust from beurre de karite (the same karite that’s used in skin care products). We found the karite oil in a big barrel at the market, bought some, and took it home not knowing what it was. We put it in the fridge and a few hours later decided, by the texture, that we had a perfect shortening. We bought canned apples from China and made an apple pie. It was a huge success with all the Canadian CUSO volunteers.

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4. What are your thoughts on gift giving?

We try to give gifts that we know our family need. After that we make donations to charity.

5. What was the most fun activity you’ve done at Christmas?

Going body boarding for one, sleigh rides down our street with all the neighbours for another. My husband brought his horse and sleigh into town and spent the day giving rides. We lived right by the river so it was very scenic and very Christmassy.

6. Do you have stockings either at Christmas, or on St. Nicholas Day?

I can’t imagine Christmas morning without stockings and we try to fill them with the traditional things we had as kids–candy canes, chocolates, mandarin oranges….

7. What was the best homemade gift you ever received?

Oh, this is an easy question. One of my secretaries gave me a night light with the bubble tube. As the light heats up it sends bubbles up the tube. She had decorated it with Christmas ribbons. It was just like the string of Christmas lights we had when I was a kid on the farm. I still have that night light and I plug it in in my kitchen each year.

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8. What would you change about Christmas?

I’d make it less commercial if I could. That’s one thing I like about Christmas here in Mexico. We aren’t bombarded with all the ads to buy, buy, buy, but people do put up decorations and trees with lights so we still have the beauty of Christmas, albeit without the snow.

9. Any additional thoughts about Christmas?

Since we moved from Edmonton, the one thing I miss is a “white Christmas.” Clean snow on the ground, frost on the trees—that was always so magical. I hope to give my granddaughter a “white Christmas” one day.

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Visit Darlene at her website:  www.emandyves.com

There you can find out all about her excellent novels.

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