A New Year of exciting possibilities

January is now upon us, the Christmas tree, decorations and tinsel have been packed away for another year, and ahead of us is another twelve months of exciting possibilities. We have another spring and summer to look forward to, when the world brightens with flowers, green grass and blue skies, when the sun shines and life starts anew and days lengthen.

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I love winter and all it brings, there is still so much to see and do, but I’m also every excited about the year ahead. I’m excited about all the work I have before me, and the projects I’m currently involved in. If all goes according to plan, there will be some big announcements in 2018, and as much as I’m bursting to tell you what they are I can’t just yet, as there are so many variables, but keep checking in, as I hope to be able to bring you news about some of it very soon.

The first big bit of news I can tell you though, is about my forthcoming book Wind Across the Nile. I now have a release date for it and I will be announcing it on my Facebook Group Chrissie Parker Book Group this weekend. So head on over and join the group if you would like to be one of the ones who hear the news first!

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The other bit of news is that my book Among the Olive Groves is currently on download sale on Amazon for 99p for UK readers. So if you haven’t got your copy yet, then now’s the time to grab a bargain! It’s the perfect time of year to lose yourself in a book set on a sunny Greek island.

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Enjoy January, it can be a hard month to get through after all the fun and festivities of December. Have a great year, I hope that 2018 makes dreams come true for all of you.

  • What are you looking forward to the most in 2018?

 

Chrissie is an author who loves history and enjoys travelling and days out exploring. www.chrissieparker.com

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Saying ‘hello’ to Christmas

Christmas can be a wonderful time of year. It’s when family, friends and co-workers come together, to celebrate, spend time with each other and be thankful. It’s when people believe in the kindness of others, or when dreams come true, and small miracles happen. The expectation of falling snow, warm log fires, and comfy clothes.

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A snowy winter wonderland
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Santa slippers!

I love Christmas. Every year I look forward to it. It’s such a magical time of year and I get very excited. Christmas is also a time of year when we look back over the year that’s passed, and think about all that’s happened. The good and the bad, the highs and the low. Sometimes we end the year grateful for everything that we’ve been through, other times we are just thankful just to get to December waiting impatiently for January to arrive so that we can start a new year afresh and forget about the past.

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Christmas Chrissie!

For me, this year, has been long and challenging. Unfortunately I was very ill in the Spring, something that forced me to take months out, and recuperate. Once I was finally better and able to return to my day job, I was greeted with the news that I was about to lose that job, something that hit me hard, and I still miss it and my ex-colleagues. My epilepsy medication was also adjusted and so I had to deal with that as well, despite it being something which has, in the end, been positive, and I had to undergo further medical tests. The worst thing about this last year however, was that my next book release was delayed indefinitely due to being ill and all the combined upheaval, which for me was both frustrating and upsetting. I hate letting my readers down and that’s what upset me the most. I felt like a failure and a disappointment to them. The book still hasn’t been released, but I’m further forward and very close to being able to publish it. News on that will be announced in January!

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All five of my published books

 

Despite my struggles throughout the year, my incredibly loyal readers have stayed with me, and they understood the delays with the book. As Christmas draws near I’m so very thankful for them and their support, they make what I do special, and without them I wouldn’t be an author, so they’re very important to me. I’m also grateful for my friends, both old and new, who understand my chaotic life, but are happy to be part of it and allow me to be in theirs, even if I don’t get to see some of them very often! Most of all I’m thankful my family for putting up with me, so to speak – they’ve been a huge support and I love them very much.

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One of my all time favourite reader photos. 

So, wherever you are, whoever you’re with this festive season, make it a good one. Enjoy your time together. Be thankful for what has passed, it makes you who you are. Be thankful for what you have, sometimes it isn’t what we want or expect, but things always have a habit of turning out okay in the end.

So this is me signing off for 2017, and I’m wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Thank you for all you kinds words and support this year, it has meant a lot, and see you in 2018!

  • What are you looking forward to the most this Christmas?

 

Chrissie is an author who loves history and enjoys travelling and days out exploring. www.chrissieparker.com

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The beautiful capital of France

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Me looking out across the river Seine

Everyone says that you should try and visit Paris at least once in your life. A city full of famous sights, history, culture and romance, Paris is a place that I’ve been lucky to visit more than once and a city that I have fond memories of.

My first trip to Paris was with the school. At the age of fifteen a coach full of my friends and I, accompanied by our teachers, made the trip across the channel and spent a few days in the city visiting some well known sights such as Notre Dame, The Centre Pompidou and The Eiffel Tower.

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View from the Eiffel Tower on our school visit
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Notre Dame Cathedral on our school visit
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Gargoyles on Notre Dame Cathedral on our school visit

It was my first trip abroad and it was exciting to be away from home with my friends. Paris was an interesting place, we got to see some amazing things and try out our French language skills in preparation for our GCSE exams. We scaled the heights of the Eiffel Tower, to take in the views, before walking back down (not for the faint hearted especially if you don’t like heights!). We explored Parisian cafés and shops, and visited The Louvre to view the famous Mona Lisa. The most interesting part of the trip however, was getting stuck in a lift, and being rescued by firefighters. It wasn’t something I enjoyed that much and I’ve been petrified of lifts and getting stuck in them ever since!

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The Seine

My next visit to Paris were day trips for various events, and I never got to see much of the city but still enjoyed being there, it’s a relaxing place to visit and work. It wasn’t until December 1999 when I returned again, this time for a longer stay that included Christmas and New Year. My home for the next three weeks was in the area of Pigalle, just round the corner from the Moulin Rouge and I grew to absolutely love this part of Paris.

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The Moulin Rouge at night

I would pop out in the mornings to buy bread, croissants and other supplies. I explored the streets that wound up to the Sacre Ceour and the artists quarter, and discovered some lovely shops and cafés. Jumping on the metro I went further afield to Lafayette and other neighbouring stores to see the beautiful Christmas window displays, marvelling at the huge tree in Galeries Lafayette, before going up to the roof to view the expansive skyline of Paris; a view I highly recommend.

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View across Paris towards the Eiffel tower
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Galeries Lafayette at Christmas
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View across Paris to Notre Dame Cathedral

Christmas Day was celebrated by eating ham, egg and chips in a local Parisian café, and New Year’s Eve was celebrated on the steps of the Sacre Ceour, looking down upon the lights of the city, as the millennium arrived in a flurry of amazing fireworks.

Other trips during my stay were to the Champs Elyse, Arc de Triomphe and Notre Dame. My favourite trip out was on New Year’s day, catching the metro to Trocadero and walking over the River Seine towards the Eiffel Tower taking in the New Year date 2000, before walking along the river towards Notre Dame. It’s a lovely walk and you get to see so much of the city from the bank of the river.

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The Eiffel Tower, 01 January 2000
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The Sacre Ceour

I love Paris, there’s so much to see and experience, and I discovered that one of the best things you can do in the city is just to walk the streets, enjoy your surroundings and take everything in. There is always something interesting to see, or new to discover. Sadly I haven’t been for a while, but I do hope that I’ll get the chance to go back again very soon, it’s a city that still has so much to offer, even if you have been there many times before.

  • Have you been to Paris? If so which was your favourite part?

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Chrissie is an author who loves history and enjoys travelling and days out exploring. www.chrissieparker.com