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Wicked Wednesday — Holiday Disasters

Eggnog Murder CompWe are celebrating the release of Eggnog Murder and are so happy for Barb who has a novella in this book. Hers is titled Nogged Off, and it appears with novellas by Leslie Meier and Lee Hollis. Here’s the blurb for the collection: With the fireplace crackling, the tree twinkling, and the carols humming, few things in life are as picture perfect as Christmas in Maine—until murder dampens the holiday spirit. It must be something in the eggnog . . .

EGGNOG MURDER by LESLIE MEIER
When a gift-wrapped bottle of eggnog—allegedly from the Real Beard Santa Club—proves to be a killer concoction for a Tinker’s Cove local, all Lucy Stone wants for Christmas is to find the murdering mixologist who’s stirring up trouble.

DEATH BY EGGNOG by LEE HOLLIS
Food and cocktails columnist Hayley Powell has never cared much for Bar Harbor’s grouchy town librarian, Agatha Farnsworth. But after the Scroogy senior has a fatal—and suspicious—allergic reaction to supposedly non-dairy eggnog, it’s up to Hayley to ladle out some justice.

NOGGED OFF by BARBARA ROSS
Julia Snowden’s tenant Imogen Geinkes seems to be jinxed. First, her poorly named “Killer Eggnog” gives all her co-workers food poisoning at the holiday party, then her boyfriend’s body shows up in Julia’s moving truck as she’s headed back to Busman’s Harbor. Now Julia has to get moving to catch the cold-hearted culprit.Cozy up with a glass of eggnog and enjoy the spirit of murder and mystery in a Yuletide treat perfect for those winter holidays . . .

Wickeds, have you ever had a holiday disaster, or do you know of one that happened to a friend?

Edith: Nothing as disastrous as those eggnog mishaps, but once we didn’t give the turkey enough time to defrost. It took forever to roast, so long that we went ahead and ate all the side dishes and were too full for the  meat when it was done! At least nobody died from eating it, though…

Sherry: That’s funny Edith! We have Christmas Eve traditions that we usually follow, early church service, pizza for dinner, followed by going out for a drive to look at Christmas tree lights. One year when we were living in Florida, we’d just returned from our Christmas drive, and Bob built a fire. I was watching the flames and noticed them reflecting in the door. Then I realized it wasn’t a reflection but actual flames outside. Before we left on the drive Bob had put ashes in a paper bag and set them outside by a bush. You can figure it out the ashes were still hot (no he was never a Boy Scout) and set the bag on fire which set a bush on fire. We quickly put it out and fortunately nothing worse than a scorched bush and a bruised ego (Bob’s).

Liz: I’ve always been a klutz. It’s been a ongoing joke in my family forever. Once when I was about 10 or so my mother gave me the very important task of giving me the honors of carrying the dessert down the stairs to where we were having one of our bigger celebrations. Of course I tripped, and a ginormous bowl of strawberries went flying down the stairs, leaving red smears on the walls and ceilings. Of course, I fell too, but the major concern was for the strawberries.

Barb: When my son was three and my daughter six months, we were traveling out the Mass Pike toward my parents’ house in Pennsylvania. Between all the baby equipment and the Christmas presents we had a soft vinyl carrier on the car’s roof. Around Auburn, MA, I said to Bill, “What is that strap flapping next to your window?” He pulled over, and I will never forget the look on his face when he inspected the roof, looked back at me, and said, “It’s gone!” It was the era of He-Man and all my son wanted for Christmas was Castle Grayskull. He had a new baby sister who he’d been excellent about and we really wanted to grant his one fervent wish. Castle Grayskull was in that roof carrier and I knew there wouldn’t be another to be found before Christmas for love or money.

At the direction of a kindly state police trooper we went to the highway maintenance building, where the four of us huddled like the most pathetic little family ever. The guys heard our sad story and went out to look, and lo and behold, word came back, they had found it by the side of the highway! They soon brought it back to us. Castle Grayskull was wrapped in clothes and unharmed. We were so relieved we hadn’t caused an accident. I remember it as one of our best Christmases ever. Castle Grayskull is still in my basement, along with all the He-men, waiting for my granddaughter.

Julie: Who can top the Castle Grayskull story? After my grandfather died, Thanksgiving became my holiday with my grandmother. We went to Maryland the first year, but the traffic was hideous, so we started the tradition of celebrating together. The first year I tried to cook dinner for her the turkey wasn’t completely defrosted. Grandma was due at 2. My roommate panicky called her mother, who talked us through getting the bird defrosted. Dinner was served by 4. My uncle had sent along a bottle of wine, and Grandma was thrilled to not have to cook, so all was good.

Jessie: Once when one of my sisters was first married she invited my husband and me to dinner at her new apartment during the holiday season. She had gone to a great deal of trouble and even went so far as to make eggnog from scratch. She knew how much I loved it and she poured me a large serving in a tall, clear glass. The taste of it was delicious but my attention kept being drawn to the strange way the contents seemed to be being squeegeed down the inside of the glass. It was not something I had ever noticed in a glass of eggnog before and when I reached the last swallow the reason became clear. The recipe had called for the egg yolks to be separated from the whites and while she had thoroughly blended the yolks into the cream, the entire quantity of whites had manged to remain a seaprate and distinct mass; first acting as an invisible, floating glob in my glass and then, most unfortunately, in my mouth. To this day, I never pour a glass of eggnog without a shudder of suspicion.

Readers: Have you ever had a holiday disaster?

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